Episode: Where Fundamentals Break Down

Synopsis: Is Michael Covel on vacation or a journey? Covel opens up today’s monologue distinguishing between the two by answering a piece of listener mail. Covel gives credit to Tim Ferris and the four hour work week mentality, and discusses his ability to work from abroad and travel to a different country every two weeks. Next, Covel answers a piece of listener mail regarding his recent comments on day traders. Covel just gives his view. He’s done his homework, done the research, and put the proof out there. It’s not just Covel pontificating only about how the world should be, but trying to be objective. Day trading track records don’t appear to exist, while trend following has a track record that’s available for anyone to see in the back of Covel’s books. Tons of people out there imagine that day trading is a legitimate way to operate, but there’s just no proof that it works. Next, Covel reads another piece of mail talking about poor returns of hedge funds in the first quarter, and how certain hedge fund managers had picked the wrong direction. Covel gives another Seykota quote on the matter: “Artful politicians and religious leaders carefully keep their promises in the future, and their tithing and taxation in the now.” Covel adds: Investing gurus are part of that list because investing gurus all want to be paid right now. Covel also talks about outlier events. Are you prepared for an outlier event? Whether a crazy North Korean dictator drops a nuke, whether one of the central bank policies across the world don’t work as expected, or something else? What if the prescribed plan doesn’t work? That’s where fundamentals break down and when they do you need a plan. There’s a great video that Covel posted recently by Dr. Vernon Smith stating that standard econometric models were not explaining what was happening in the real world. They weren’t explaining bubbles, and not until Dr. Smith started studying the psychology of how people behave did he finally start to understand what was going on. Are you going to believe that Vernon Smith and Daniel Kahneman had figured something out about the human psyche when it comes to markets and money, or are you going to trust that government agencies have figured it out and are going to manage it all for you perfectly? If you do trust Dr. Smith, as Covel highly recommends, how are you going to prepare for the next event? Do you really think there’s a chance that the S&P will only go up, and will never drop by 50% again? Get a strategy to help you out when there’s an outlier move. That’s the key. Covel moves on and talks about his time so far in Vietnam, including an all female motorbike tour, avoiding getting run over crossing busy traffic circles, and an incredible Vietnamese dancer. Are the communists doing better capitalism better? The question of the day! Free DVD: www.trendfollowing.com/win.

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