Tom Willis and Bob Jenkins

Years back Tom Willis (a friend of Richard Dennis’) and Bob Jenkins, running a hedge fund, offered answers about “price” during an interview. An excerpt:

Bob Jenkins: “Everything known is reflected in the price. It makes inherent sense. I could never hope to compete with Cargill that has soybean agents scouring the globe knowing everything there is to know about soybeans and funneling the information up to Lake Minnetonka, their trading headquarters. Unless I have a friend at Cargill, I can only get this information one way: I can infer it technically. We have friends who have made millions trading fundamentally, but their problems are (a) they can rarely know as much as the commercials [i.e. Cargill]; and (b) they are limited to trading their [one market] specialty. They don’t know anything about bonds; they don’t know anything about the currencies. I don’t either, but I’ve made a lot of money trading them. Every picture’s worth a thousand words.”

Tom Willis: “They’re just numbers. Corn is a little different than bonds, but not different enough that I’d have to trade them differently-not different enough that I would have to have a different system.”

Bob Jenkins: “Some of these guys I read about have a different system for each [market]. That’s absurd. We’re trading mob psychology. We’re trading numbers. We’re not trading corn, soybeans or S&Ps.”

I hope everyone catches the nuance of Bob Jenkins’ last statement? Some great succinct language about what “it” takes. Taken from an interview 20 years ago…

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