Guest Post (2/23/18)
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Investing (Differently), By Robert Bailey


What does your investing give you: More money? Or more worry?
Hearing a stock tip from Cramer or a neighbor might seem innocent. But overhearing a Cramer rant shouldn’t create angst and doubt. If you think Zut! I’ve missed the BIG ONE (again), you have a problem.
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Even for pros, investing is an emotional exercise. Unless you’re buying Tesla, stocks have nothing to do with rocket science. The antidote to investment blues is rather obvious. Read books that shape your critical mind. Warren Buffett partner Charlie Mungerstates the point. “In my whole life, I have known no wise people (over a broad subject matter area) who didn’t read all the time — none, zero.” Wise people yes—and rich. But which books?
Why not get to know Warren Buffett? “Snowball” by Alice Schroeder tracks the emergence of Warren Buffett’s persona. Inclined to research and personal development Warren’s methods refined over time. He regards “How to Win Friends and Influence People” as formative. Such wisdom is Buffett’s investment system.
You have missed clear economic logic without Thomas Sowell. In “Basic Economics: A Common Sense Guide to the Economy” Dr. Sowell covers a range of terms and concepts. Yet he shatters the dull gravity of academia—and economics. Zippy true statements such as “prices are what pay for costs” are normal. At 87, Dr. Sowell recently retired from writing. He is a dedicated researcher and thinker. His work on the causes of global poverty, racism, and debt will remain some of the most readable around.
In his previous book, Nasim Nicholas Taleb added a new word to the everyday lexicon: The Black Swan. These are unlikely events with lasting long-term impact. As a top former options trader, probability is Taleb’s passion. Don’t shrug. He is entertaining, erudite and clever in writing. With “Antifragile,” the author lays out a compelling argument. Fragility is the cause of our complex problems. Fragility? Rigid buildings, entrenched institutions and stagnant political and business processes, for starters. He writes: “Much of modern life is preventable chronic stress injury.” Allowing randomness leads to fresh courses. Novel ways of thinking about and solving dilemmas become more likely.
Could equity investing be a rigged game? “Trend Following”says it is. Michael Covel critiques traditional broker-based ‘buy and hope’ strategies and suggests the alternative. Traders trade, says Covel, and markets are not about investing. They are for trading. High returns become probable with a rules-based system for entering and exiting trades. Trend followers are in good company. Bernard Baruch and Jesse Livermore had similar systems. Billionaire John W. Henry is owner of the Boston Red Sox and other sports franchises. He has turned his trading system into real life money ball.
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You won’t find the BIG ONE in these. But with a little reading you might one day say, like Babe Ruth: “Every strike brings me closer to the next home run.”
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Robert M Bailey Copywriting was launched to address the revenue gaps in so many businesses. Not all companies need capital but all companies need clear communication that adds revenue. Working across all media for 25 years he has seen what works and what just costs money.  Parent company TrustedAdvisory provides clients with strategic private equity and tactical planning for and execution of funding. Current clients are in medtech and medical real estate development. All tend to be innovators crossing over from changes in VC funding. The eDigitalPersona writing subsidiary develops lead generation and auto-response systems for financial teams, financial newsletters, broker/advisors, and the crypto-coin industry.