TLC Weekly Update December 18, 2020

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Last option expiration week of the year is now finally over. The rest of the year are filled with holidays so majority of the traders will not be trading. I wonder how many trading bots are aware of this and avoid trading too.

The other day my son showed me a game he’s playing online. It is a form of tower defense with several twists to make it appealing to gamers. Similar to all the other latest online games, it is free to play with extra items that one can pay for. I ended up digging out some old research on the economics of these games which explained that they make money by exploiting a form of human defect. Interesting.

In the spirit of the holiday season, here is a video on an animal letter opener.

One of the most messed up political drama this year is definitely Brexit agreement negotiation. Seriously, just watch this video and you will understand completely why there can never be any progress with the Brexit negotiation. Yet another example of politicians love wasting other people’s money …

It is time for me to slow down a bit, do some planning for next year and find inspirations from leisure reading.

Have a great weekend all!

TLC Weekly Update December 11, 2020

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Another interesting trading week almost over with all eyes on next week’s US electoral vote event (Monday, Dec 14) that may result in some shocking twists and turns. All these states filed their cases with the US supreme court may not impact the outcome though. But what if they do? I can’t imagine the mess we are going to see …

This is the time of the year people start to read up the astrology predictions for the coming year. One recurring talk about Dec 14 and Dec 21 this year keeps coming up. The other funny one is the talk about Mayan end of the world year was not 2012 but 2021. I am not a believer in astrology based on Zodiac birth month. It is still fun to read and watch astrologers, both experts and pretend ones, making forecast about people’s future.

I just learned about Russia’s organic food industry and I am very fascinated that how long will it take US to condemn all organic food because it is mostly imported from Russia.

My research on history for some mysterious reason landed me on this story about the evolution of bats. It is a good read though.

A good video by Yahoo Finance asking Paul Tudor Jones his view of the market. It is a short video packed with good info and his thoughts about the stock market may surprise you.

I am writing my 2021 business plan at the moment. After a year of total chaos and surprises, I have so much to add to my usual contingency plan. Trying to anticipate what has never happened in our own life time is difficult. Hence the research into past history to see what can happen and how that impact the economy and our lives becomes very useful.

For example, what if we have another major power outage like year 2003. Or that something like Ebola, instead of COVID-19, is spreading worldwide. The goal is to figure out what has to be done so that I will not react to these crisis level situations unprepared.

And of course, end of the year is a good time to clean out the junk. I finally have to throw away my trusted Samsung all-in-one printer / scanner. It served me well for over 10 years. Over the years, its drum died first, so I could not use it as a printer but I still keep it as a scanner. Then the scanner cover broke last time I moved so all it can do was doing autofeed scanning. And now its autofeeder gave in.

So after all, I ended up buying something this holiday season. Like it or not, life is a series of surprises.

Have a great weekend all!

TLC Weekly Update December 4, 2020

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This Non-Farm Payroll (NFP) week has surprised many people who keep talking about how overpriced the stock market is while all week the market just levitated to stay near all time high. Can’t blame them. Normal people, which include majority of the traders, do not pay attention to the obvious bullish biases during NFP weeks. It is a good thing for those who are aware of it and act on it.

Holiday season now in force so trading volume should be reduced somewhat. However, given the uncertainty of the US election still hanging around, I don’t know if the traditional Christmas rally can happen in a normal way like the past. Well, what’s normal this year at all?

Interesting read about the Donut King, there are lessons we can all learn from this story. From rags to riches once we all heard of but twice, makes it all more interesting.

This touching story about old couples who have to face the hard decision to send their loved ones to nursing home or palliative care is a problem many of us have to face eventually. From my personal experience and also shared knowledge from close friends, it gets harder if you are old and frail yourself as the caregiver. It is important to ask for help when you are exhausted and feeling hopeless.

I came across an interesting video talking about the discovery of how Ancient Egyptian sounds like. I wonder if they really got it right, or, like what most economists do, that everything they do are just pure guessing.

Here in Toronto the lockdown has escalated and a new trend has emerged. People are moving to houses in small towns outside of Toronto. It is like a mass exodus thanks to the technology we have available nowadays making it possible to work from home. These small town house prices have skyrocketed some 15-20% in a few short months while Toronto downtown core condo prices dropped 10-15% overall. This is a price shock event that will take time to absorb.

I reached a major milestone with my trading venture for which the automated day trading model I envisioned some two years ago is now mostly completed. It covers about 80% of the strategies I deem important. Looking back, if I did not made the decision to aim higher, this would never happen. Doing this while the stock markets going through its craziest time was a tough challenge. It also makes it much more satisfying.

For my trading venture, having the first model completed is just the first step, although a very important step. From here my team will have to expand on what I have accomplished and expand the research and development work across many more markets. It will be even more challenging when we start to tackle markets we are not familiar with. Can’t wait to see what we will accomplish in year 2021!

Have a great weekend all!

TLC Weekly Update November 27, 2020

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Today is Black Friday. Many shopping malls and online stores, however, have already kickstarted their holiday sales since the beginning of the week. I don’t usually participate in this holiday sale period thanks to my lack of interest in buying the latest whatever consumer items. No exception this year. I will kick back and relax a bit more at home while finishing up several projects.

An interesting story about the origin of Manuka honey. We are so used to read horror story of introducing a specie to a foreign environment can cause disaster. This one, however, is an exception.

And here is another bizarre story I bumped into when I am doing my research about important historical moments in the past. Human history is really fascinating and it can be tasty too.

A long video from Wharton School featuring Howard Marks. Not that many people have watched this video because it does not contain catchy phrases or keywords. However, this video is filled with wisdom you can hardly find from the YouTube trading gurus.

Have a nice weekend everyone!

TLC Weekly Update November 20, 2020

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Another week that the stock market flirting with all time high yet not quite able to stay that way. More vaccine news but not good enough to offset the other pressing issues. Traders should be happy that next week is Thanksgiving week. Traditionally, pro traders who are doing fine up to this point for the year would wind down their trading and take a break all week. Let’s see if trading volume will drop like the past this coming week.

I have been reading books and studying history to try to get a better perspective of the current global situation. It feels like we are going to see drastic changes in coming few years as the post COVID era is getting very chaotic already. It is important to figure out what to do and prepare for this “interesting time”.

I came across some amusing reads that has nothing to do with the big picture though.

For example, this one on the birth of chaos theory and this other article on Olive Oatman the pioneer girl are good read.

During this holiday week, would you be interested in trying the sport of egg boxing? I find this quite funny since we can never guess what people do with their spare time …

Lately, I have this burst of creativity that keeps me going 12-14 hours a day working on my projects. Very good progress is made and I am happy for that. Hopefully this can last long enough so that I can complete several projects before the end of this year.

Have a great weekend all!

Happy Thanksgiving Week to my US readers!

TLC Weekly Update November 13, 2020

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Today is Friday the 13th. Famous for handing out chaos and troubles. Well, the whole week was a mess for the financial markets thanks to Pfizer’s vaccine announcement spiked the stock markets much higher. And then everyone learnt that its CEO filed to unload most of his holdings of the company. Talking about sarcasms …

With the hanging issue of US election, everyone I talked to are as confused as I am about the near term outlook of the financial markets. A weekend break is much needed to reflect on all these latest developments. Some friends of mind are talking about using psychedelics this weekend to clear their minds. For those of you interested in New Age stuff, here is a piece on DMT trip … interesting I must say.

And for astrology fans, or just astronomy enthusiasts, the last Jupiter Pluto conjunction in this year just happened on Nov 12th. It will not happen again until Feb 4, 2033. That’s 13 years away. I am not sure what this signify. I hope, though, that it implies COVID-19 is over.

Someone sent this video to me on making a simple toy. This can be a fun project for kids and adults alike. Enjoy!

I am kind of re-reading a book I have. “Kind of” because it is a different edition. The book is The Most Important Thing Illuminated by Howard Marks. This edition has additional comments from other people and the author himself. It is a great book for anyone interested in longer term investing.

So much work to get done before the year end. I guess no holiday break for me this year.

Have a nice weekend all!

TLC Weekly Update November 6, 2020

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US election was over but the messy process of getting a US president for the next term has just started. Hopefully my prediction, that it will take years to resolve the issue, is wrong. Some people suggest that US should really be split into two countries instead of one since the votes are so distinctly divided at 50/50 level. They may have a point.

I have an extremely productive week. Multiple issues with deploying automated trading strategies are resolved. New strategy development effort has achieved great progress. Since travel around the world is still quite troublesome, looks like I will stay in Toronto doing R&D all the way into end of this year.

I grew up playing 2D fighting games. And I am pretty bad at it. Somehow I watched this video on the Tekken 7 world championship final. Amazing precision and control. How do they do that?

Just a fun video on the fastest robot solving a Rubik’s cube.

It is disappointing to see US sinking into chaos. Once upon a time, it was safe to send your children by US postal. What went so wrong that this once superpower of the world has turned into a disgrace?

I guess politics is really not my thing. Better focus on my trading.

Have a great weekend all!

TLC Weekly Update October 30, 2020

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Yesterday the few major US technology companies reported their earnings. That rocked the overnight markets into chaos. Next thing we know a 7.0 earthquake hit Turkey and Greece. What a week …

US Election is next Tuesday. For those of you who are new to trading, may I remind you to check your account to make sure you are either flat on your index trading positions as you planned, or, having enough margin to cover the potential swings. Back in 2016, when Trump won the election, we have a 5% drop that no one can get out and then a complete reversal from that low to open 2% above the closing price before the election. It is not a game for those unprepared.

I know some of you are interested in arts, here is a video about an artist who can turn stone into water. It has English subtitle. Enjoy!

It turns out I am not the only one like watching chess videos. Here is an article about the big come back of the game itself and how real-time streaming changed the landscape. I do not really have a lot of time playing chess myself. However I do enjoy playing chess puzzles and they are available for free at several well know chess sites. Check them out and see if you like it.

This week somehow many of my tasks are either completed or that I have to wait for responses from others. That gave me time to tidy up my place. It is long overdue though. Next week my schedule will return to its hectic mode again.

I will enjoy this little breathing time a bit more now.

Have a great weekend all!

TLC Weekly Update October 23, 2020

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Finally, the last US presidential debate is over. Now we just have to sit tight and wait for the outcome by election day. For traders everywhere, hopefully there will be a slow down of random news shock from the two camps. Giving the world a break until the results are in on election day would be nice. I am sure more chaos will follow after the election though …

Bitcoins is on the move again and the crypto traders are getting all excited about it. Although I don’t hold a lot of BTC anymore, it is nice to see more and more famous financial gurus willing to bet on the concept. The latest being Paul Tudor Jones. What he says 5 months ago and what he says yesterday. Of course, he is talking his book because he just bet $100 million (I can be wrong on the figure) on BTC in the beginning of the year.

Read a story about the old Nintendo NES Zapper. It is so interesting to see how game developers managed to overcome the hardware limitations back then. Since I have not played console games for a long long time, I wonder what kind of technology the current generation of shooting games uses for better gaming experience.

I encounter this question pretty much every week in random conversations all the time, “Why do people fail at trading?” All those “gurus” out there giving their personal accounts of determination and perseverance needed to win the game are pure bullshit. Some of them are the lucky ones belonging to the 4% I explained here, the rest are fake gurus who copy the answers from the others on the internet. Here is another take on the issue based on our physiology and that’s why I told everyone that they have to be awaken first before they stand a chance.

To be awaken is a process. High level of awareness is needed for anyone who want to accomplish real mastery in anything. It is a very easy task to do if you choose to practice awareness deliberately. The hard part is making it your second nature or making it effortless. Since majority of the population refuses to do anything that gives them a sense of defeat, thus people with high level awareness is very rare.

For those of you who really want to improve your awareness but lack the guidance, you can start with something easier to digest, like, The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck, so that you have some background understanding about human minds. From there you can progress to learn basic breathing techniques to control your mind. Once a slightly better foundation is built, you can then learn to observe yourself.

Just like anything that worth pursuing, you must be willing to transform yourself in order to stay the course.

Have a great weekend all!

TLC Weekly Update October 16, 2020

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This was option expiration week but then thanks to the way Softbank and its copycats cornering the stock market like no tomorrow, the option market makers have no choice but to accept defeat. Many gurus out there keep saying the stock market is not following the reality of the real economy. I have a slightly different take on the detachment of correlation though – underneath the major indices, only a handful of stocks are driving the indices to all time high while majority of the other components have not recovered like the real economies around the world. The stock markets are reflecting the reality – that only a handful of companies benefited from the situation.

Interesting read about the energy efficiency of computing. CPU overheat is something that affect computer performance ever since they were created. It looks like we finally learn more about this issue over the past several years that can contribute to major breakthrough in computer performance.

Scary tell from Loy Machedo in this YouTube video. Young people who are fortunate enough to grow up in the better parts of the world should know about the reality out there. The world is full of dark corners and the willingness to pay attention to these issues can help you develop a proper perspective of the world we are living in.

For the programmer readers, here is a long read about Amazon’s epic failure at cracking the online game industry. Sometimes, doing everything in-house just because you can afford it may lead to massive waste of resources and failure to deliver anything of significance. The same problem persists with majority of the aspiring traders who think they can afford to lose enough money to hack their way to trading success …

I have so much work to catch up with so I will wrap up here.

Have a great weekend all!