The STA Blog - Technical Analysis Courses - Page 5
Anyone involved in the trading community will know of the plethora of classes, coaches, gurus and what not out there willing to turn you into an overnight success. Each has their special angle, be it motivation, risk control, discipline and Zen Buddhism. There are also excellent text books, one of the oldest of its kind is Dale Carnegie’s 1936 ‘How to win Friends and Influence People’. Now available as an audiobook which I think is currently free on Alexa hardware.
Currently Chief Market Strategist at StockCharts.com in Seattle, I’ve known David from his Bloomberg days. He also has a blog called The Mindful Investor, on which this excellent webinar is broadly based. Interestingly, his first chart maps the high and lows of his career progress as a technical analyst. An idea cobbled from interviewee graphic designer Ken, who he subsequently hired. Creativity and thinking outside the box are David’s strengths.
With precious little interesting to do in lockdown London – other than going for walks and enjoying the beautiful sunshine – I decided to attack paperwork at home. Not the utility bills, insurance policies and income tax, but the piles of things generated over many years as a journalist, author and keen technical analyst. You can tell I, like so many others, have not exactly embraced paperless work.
I consider my very long term charts – of markets, economic trends, demographics and whatever – like gold dust. However, I can see that the ink on some is fading and that eventually the paper will probably crumble and turn to dust too. Over the years these have been adequately filed and needed little rearrangement. More recent finds, currently in the pending box, were sorted and added to these.
With lockdown being de rigueur this season, and all the talk of family bubbles, travel corridors, quarantining and social isolation, I happened to spot a few potential island reversals in the charts. Which then set me thinking about their validity, considering the other idea that gaps should be filled.
You probably remember this expression from the film ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’. This makes sense, because in those days Spanish coins were minted with silver mined in Latin America, based on a system of 8 ‘reales’ – as Brazil’s currency is known today (real). In 1537, after some debasement, Spain introduced the escudo (as Portugal’s currency was later called) gold coin, worth 16 reales. After further debasement, the gold doubloon (from the word double) was introduced and worth 32 reales. I remember trading and charting – on appropriate graph paper – gilts in thirty-seconds – as US Treasury bonds are still priced today.
In a week when even President Trump was called out for spreading dubious facts on social media, you know that the format has a big problem. The obvious scare-mongering is often easy to spot, and we all know that screaming headlines sell newspapers. But when it comes to the coverage of financial markets, the economy, and long term trends, the record is truly terrible.
Sometimes in today’s ‘’instant knowledge at the touch of a smartphone’’ world, it’s very easy to become overconfident. Or assume that everyone, and anyone, could know what they need with a quick Google search.
Very recently the 2020 Cost of Living Report was published covering 133 cities around the globe, listing which were the most expensive to live in. Tied in top spot were Singapore, Hong Kong and Osaka, with New York in 4th place and Paris 5th. In case you’re interested, the cheapest was Damascus, Tashkent one place off the bottom, Almaty next, with Buenos Aires and Karachi tied at number 129.
Artist and prize-winning potter, Grayson Perry, has been busy during the lock-down. A social butterfly by nature, oft-spotted at Royal Academy parties sporting a little girl Alice in Wonderland look, last night he and his wife hosted an hour-long TV programme on Channel 4 encouraging us to take up portrait painting and drawing. Yes, really, and comedian Joe Lycett (briefly called Hugo Boss) quickly produced a very convincing one of the UK’s Chief Medical Officer Chris Whitty.
Published on the 10th April 2020 in the Financial Times newspaper, this wasn’t the first time Mr Coates had contributed an article. Acting on a hunch he had had when running a trading desk for Deutsche Bank, he then retrained in neuroscience and physiology at Cambridge University. He wanted to find out whether ‘the rollercoaster of physical sensations a person experiences while immersed in the markets alters their risk-taking’.
As a handful of countries start lifting corona-virus related restrictions, Britain looks set to enter another 3 weeks of lockdown. Tuesday the 14th April was the second STA Monthly Meeting that was held online due to limits to the size of indoor gatherings. Our guest speaker, Sankar Sharma, was obviously delighted to be invited, saying he was proud to be ‘among the best in the world of technical analysis’.
Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar came to a sticky end on the 15th of March, lending the phrase negative connotations ever since. In fact, an Ide is a very ancient word for certain dates in the calendar, the first full moon of the month (March, in this case). Tonight, the 7th April, we have another full moon, a pink super bright one as the moon’s elliptical orbit around the earth brings it closer to us than usual. It actually looks orange, and the ‘pink’ comes from the phlox that flowers at this time of year.
I’m a regular presence at Tuesday’s monthly meetings of the Society of Technical Analysts at the Institute of Chartered Accountants of England and Wales’ lovely premises at One Moorgate Place, City of London. Partly because I so enjoy catching up with members over drinks after the talk, but also because I’m tasked with doing a write-up and blog for those who didn’t make it. The meeting on the 11th March was cancelled – such a pity.
Quite by chance, about 10 days ago, someone put me on to a video available (to those who pay a television licence fee) on BBC iPlayer. Called ‘The Markets’, it was released in 1976 and is an interesting vignette of how things used to be in the City of London, and how the plumbing really works. I don’t go back that far, though I did study at the London School of Economics, but many of my work colleagues in the early 1980s were around then and regaled us with tales of the old days – not the ‘good old days’ mind you.
A very brave Joshua Mahoney of the IG platform faces an incredibly tricky time explaining the carnage in all sorts of markets on the morning of Monday 9th March 2020 – plus, trying to forecast the next step. Well done, we say, as this is precisely the time and space when we need clear advice and cool heads.
A phrase dreaded by market makers in all areas of finance who, because they are obliged to make two-way prices for existing clients throughout the business day, means there are more difficult orders on the way and the most recent price the client accepted was because it went in their favour. In other words, the dealer’s got stuck with a nasty position and scrambling out of it is about to get even harder.
Book review: ‘Unchartered: How to map the future together’ by Margaret Heffernan, published by Simon & Schuster
The Weekend FT is strong on book reviews, generally well-written, some good, rarely bad, and never indifferent. Mercifully, they cover a lot more than fiction because, as my friend the Supreme Court judge says: ‘’when you have to read a lot for your work, fiction becomes less and less satisfying’’ – as is also my case.
Media outlets – and not just financial ones – have been getting terribly excited about the share price of US electric vehicle-maker Tesla. Admittedly the firm has stolen a march over its competitors, and Mr Musk has an army of ardent fans who almost believe he’s a visionary who can walk on water. But at the heart of speculation is whether, and how quickly, can his shares hit the $1,000 mark. Price action recently has been almost vertical – with a sharp stumble here and there. Cassandras, predictably, are saying it’ll end in tears.
Robin Griffiths, who has pedigree, overviews the last 50 years: Because the STA also has 50 years under its belt
Well, we’ll have to give it to him, he’s done 53 years as a professional technical analyst/strategist, despite a BA in economics from Nottingham University. His first City job was at stockbrokers Phillips and Drew – one of the many names I remember from long ago – which produced, in Robin’s opinion, some of ‘’probably the best fundamental analysis in London.’’ Well, I bet that’s not what you expected! Exempted from 9 of the 13 actuarial exams required, he tidied up the situation ASAP.
A little social media bird let me in on a surprise. For her interview on IG TV, hosted by Victoria Scholar, veteran technical analyst Patricia Elbaz arrived with a congratulatory card and cake. This is because Victoria had passed her STA Diploma Part I exam with ‘amazing results’. I’m sure all STA members will want to extend their best wishes to all other successful candidates.
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