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  • Gold Retraces 50% Of The 1999-2011 Bull Market [View article]
    I created an instablog where we can discuss my trades, performance etc. and people can also ask options trading related questions. This will be my last comment here.
    Aug 8, 2015. 04:05 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Gold Retraces 50% Of The 1999-2011 Bull Market [View article]
    "It should be a great privileged for anyone to be accepted by you if you are doing great."

    There are in fact prolonged periods of time when we are closed and maintain a waiting list.

    No problem.. just keep doing what works for you and I will keep doing what works for me.

    The major difference between us is that I publish a FULL track record and you don't. And I'm talking about FULL track record, including allocation and return on the whole portfolio. Not just few isolated trades that might or might not make 500~1000%.

    Sorry LT.. I'm done. I can see now why most people here placed you on "ignore".
    Aug 8, 2015. 03:18 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Gold Retraces 50% Of The 1999-2011 Bull Market [View article]
    "You keep talking about 75% per annualized returns as if it dropped from heaven ! That is little better than 6% per month. Sure while it is great it is not so exciting."

    75% is YTD, which is 10%+ per month, including 40% in cash. I would bet that 99% of fund managers and retails investors would take even half with both hands.

    "I mounted an aggressive bear put spread for Jan 2016 earlier in the year as a part of my play on overall market ..which has generated over 300% on paper."

    Are you comparing returns of one isolated trade with return of the whole portfolio?? Seriously?? How much did you allocate for that trade? Can you repeat the same setup time after time and do it consistently? What is the risk of that trade? How does it blend with your overall portfolio?

    "In each case you must do your home work well to determine the potential directional move of the asset in question. How do you then select which one for a calendar spread or strangles?"

    Of course I must do my homework. I never said it's easy. A LOT of backtesting to find the best candidates and to determine the best strategy. Will it always work? No, but we are playing probabilities. Our winning ration is around 70%, which is good enough for me.

    "But for AMZN it would have been noticed from price action that a simple bull call spread could have done a far better job going into earnings."

    That's a hindsight bias. Would you make a similar call in real time? We made gains on AMZN calendar even after the stock moved 40 points before earnings, without taking any directional risk. That's the power of those strategies - you can be wrong and still make money. With directional strategies, if you are wrong, your trade is toast.

    Is it worth the effort to make around 7-10% per month on average? Well, that's for you to decide. I believe that most fund managers would kill their mother for similar returns.
    Aug 8, 2015. 12:08 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Gold Retraces 50% Of The 1999-2011 Bull Market [View article]
    "You Cannot be neutral on these 3 at same time. Could be neutral on at most 2 above to make any money depending on your objective."

    I don't need to. I need to be delta neutral on most of my positions and balance the portfolio in terms of the Greeks. Some of the positions will be vega positive, some vega negative. But if you have a mix of non-directional strategies in your portfolio, they will balance each other on portfolio level, not trade level. This is how you make money consistently and also avoid big losses.
    Aug 8, 2015. 10:11 AM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Gold Retraces 50% Of The 1999-2011 Bull Market [View article]
    Please don't twist my words. I never said it's the panacea and I never said that non-directional strategies are better or worse than directional.

    My point is simple: the non-directional options strategies CAN make very good returns if used properly. People should consider them as ONE of the strategies in their portfolios, exactly for the reason you mentioned: it's very hard to get direction correctly consistently.

    The bottom line is that it works for me and for hundreds of my members. This year the markets are flat, yet our model portfolio is up 75%. I believe this is the best proof for the efficiency of those strategies.
    Aug 8, 2015. 09:41 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Gold Retraces 50% Of The 1999-2011 Bull Market [View article]
    "It is also wrong to claim that market neutral strategies outperform."

    Right.. people keep telling me this, and I continue proving them wrong year after year. Ignorance at its best. And this same ignorance explains why doesn't everyone do it.

    "One funny market neutral strategy is to long and short 1000 shares of AAPL at same time."

    This is the best you can come with?
    Aug 7, 2015. 09:58 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Gold Retraces 50% Of The 1999-2011 Bull Market [View article]

    You are absolutely right about hedging. Unfortunately, to most people options mean leverage only. Options are much more than that. They can be used for protection, hedging, income, you name it. With stocks, there are two strategies only (buy or sell short). With options, there are about 70+ strategies. If you are bullish, you can use around 20 different strategies, covering every possible scenario and your outlook on the stock. Same with bearish.

    Even more importantly, you can make money with options when the market does nothing. Unlike what many people think, non-directional strategies can be extremely profitable if used correctly.

    The most important thing to understand is that no strategy will work all the time. This is why it is important to use mix of strategies.
    Aug 7, 2015. 09:50 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Gold Retraces 50% Of The 1999-2011 Bull Market [View article]

    I don't do day trading. My average holding period is around 7-10 days. I agree that it is more difficult to make money with day trading.

    If what you do works for you, no reason to change it. If you can get the direction right consistently, good for you. I hope you realize that leverage works both ways, and those leveraged ETFs have horrible long term performance. Just be ready to get off when the party stops.
    Aug 7, 2015. 01:20 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Gold Retraces 50% Of The 1999-2011 Bull Market [View article]

    As I mentioned to you several times, SA discontinued the options category and I cannot write articles anymore, but everyone can look at 110+ articles that I already have and get the impression about my style.
    Aug 7, 2015. 01:16 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Gold Retraces 50% Of The 1999-2011 Bull Market [View article]
    Dear Ben,

    My goal is simply to present alternative ways to make money in the stock market. No more no less. I never dismissed other strategies. If they work for you that's great. My way of trading is ignoring the Fed, the technicals, the fundamentals, and the market direction in general. It works for me and for hundreds of my members. It doesn't work for everyone.

    My way of trading is for those who are tired from guessing. Tired from losing money in corrections and market crashes (that come inevitably every 6-8 years).

    As for "creating my own buzz" - if you looked at my profile, you would see that I wrote over 110 articles and have over 2,600 followers. Unfortunately, SA discontinued options category, so I cannot write articles anymore.

    "looking to attract subscribers"? The membership was actually closed 4 times already and will be closed again soon because I have too many subscribers.. you got it all wrong.

    Too bad that so many people are missing the beauty of options trading due to their ignorance. I guess it's their loss. My options trading account is up 70-100% on average in the last few years. Up 57% this year already (can send screenshot of the account to anyone interested).
    Aug 7, 2015. 11:42 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Gold Retraces 50% Of The 1999-2011 Bull Market [View article]
    First of all, I never said I would not incur any losses. Whoever present ANY strategy and claims no losses is simply not telling the truth.

    The point of non-directional trading is that you don't depend on market direction. For example, one of the strategies is straddle when you buy simultaneously call and put on the same security. I described one of the variations of this strategy here -

    We use mix of non-directional strategies to balance the options Greeks.

    Why doesn't everyone do it? Well, many people are not ready to put the time and the effort to learn those strategies. When it comes to options, most try it by just buying low probability out of the money options, see few trades go to zero, conclude that options are too risky and give up.

    It's a shame since options offer so many possibilities if used correctly.
    Aug 7, 2015. 11:03 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Gold Retraces 50% Of The 1999-2011 Bull Market [View article]
    Well, that depends how you do it.

    If you do it with options and make defined risk bet with 100:1 risk/reward, your probability of success is usually 1:100 as well, so long term, your chances to make money consistently are not high.

    If you do it with futures for example, then you can use much more than 1x your money. Leverage works both ways, right?

    I prefer to aim for CONSISTENT 10-20% gains with high probability of success. And my gains don't depend on market direction.
    Aug 7, 2015. 10:33 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Gold Retraces 50% Of The 1999-2011 Bull Market [View article]
    "are you saying everyone else is guessing except you?"

    No, I'm saying I'm not even trying to guess. I just know my limitations. You could do all the research in the world and oil could still go back to 70. There are so many factors involved that are beyond your control. This is why I switched to non-directional trading and stopped guessing. Many people simply think that you need to "understand the markets and products" in order to be successful trader. But to me, SPY, TSLA and GOOG are just ticket symbols. I have my opinion about Tesla products, but I have no idea if the stock is overvalued or undervalued. It doesn't prevent me to trade its options each cycle before earnings and make 25-30% on average.
    Aug 7, 2015. 10:29 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Gold Retraces 50% Of The 1999-2011 Bull Market [View article]
    It is interesting to see market reactions to those events. Initial drop in futures, then after few minutes they turned positive, and now negative again. What happened during the hour after the report was out that justifies such swings?

    It is also fascinating to read all 800+ comments, from people trying to guess the direction of gold, oil, interest rates, Fibonacci, Shmibonacci, etc. I was in the same boat few years ago, and found out that 90% of the "experts", are just guessing.

    To see how reliable market forecasts are, lets take a look at Those guys asked a simple question:

    Can equity market experts, whether self-proclaimed or endorsed by others (such as publications), reliably provide stock market timing guidance? Do some experts clearly show better market timing intuition than others?

    To answer that question, during 2005 through 2012 they collected 6,582 forecasts for the U.S. stock market offered publicly by 68 experts, bulls and bears employing technical, fundamental and sentiment indicators.

    Terminal accuracy is 46.9%, an aggregate value very steady since the end of 2006.

    Did you get it? The average accuracy of the investment gurus is worse than a coin toss!!!

    Do you really think you can do it better?
    Aug 7, 2015. 09:45 AM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Gold Retraces 50% Of The 1999-2011 Bull Market [View article]

    Let me summarize our discussion, and I promise this will be my last response to you.

    1. The discussion started when you claimed that with pre-earnings straddles, you have 90%+ winning ratio and winners north of 50%. While this is one of my favorite strategies, unfortunately this statistics is very unrealistic. The real numbers are close to 70% winning ratio and around 8-10% average return per trade (including losers). I asked you to provide any data supporting your claims, but you refused.

    2. You claimed that optimal time to enter is a month before earnings, which is not my experience. I did extensive backtesting on the subject. You claimed that entering TSLA strangle a month before earnings would produce good gains - backtesting shows losses in 20-30% range. Despite my repetitive requests to provide one single setup that made money, you refused to do it.

    3. You entered two trades ULTA and QIHU a month before earnings - both are down so far, which mean that entering so early, theta does outpace vega.

    You made few absolutely ridiculous claims without backing them up by numbers, hiding behind the IP excuses. All my claims are backed up by hard numbers, real trades and backtesting.

    If you still believe in your 90% winning ratio and entering one month before earnings, keep posting trades and we will track them to see if you get anywhere near what you claim is possible. So far based on UTLA, QIHU and TSLA examples, you very far from there.

    You can post on my article if you want, it seems more appropriate place, or on your instablog.
    Aug 6, 2015. 07:22 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment