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Ep. 387: Gabriel Weinberg Interview with Michael Covel on Trend Following Radio

Gabriel Weinberg
Gabriel Weinberg

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Today on Trend Following Radio Michael Covel talks with author and startup entrepreneur Gabriel Weinberg about the concept of traction. Gabriel points out that in the business world traction is about far more than simply getting a grip and hanging in there – it’s about then moving forward, ultimately toward a defined goal (customers).

Just like a trend following trader that uses quantitative methods to invest scientifically, Gabriel relies on numbers and hard data to inform him about which marketing channels are working and which should be focused on, and which are less effective and should be dropped. The result is a streamlined marketing approach that’s allowed Gabriel, a self-published author, to sell upwards of 35,000 copies of his book.

Michael and Gabriel also talk about how psychology factors into startup entrepreneurship. For anyone investing their time and energy into a project, both passion and resiliency are paramount. If you aren’t passionate about the work you’re doing, and if you don’t genuinely enjoy the challenge of bringing a product to market, then you’re doomed before you ever start. Best, as Michael suggests, to run back to the office cubicle.

In this episode of Trend Following Radio:

  • Reaching your goal, then setting another
  • Resilience: vital to the entrepreneur
  • Committing to your idea
  • Psychology: the main barrier to success
  • Understanding that it’s okay to fail
  • Enjoy the challenge – or go do something else

“And so if you think of your initial product as a leaky bucket – you know, you pour in customers at the top and customers leak out of the bucket because your product’s not good yet…You need a steady stream of cold customers with fresh eyes to tell you where those leaks are, and if you don’t have that when you launch you’re still gonna have leaks more of the time than not.” – Gabriel Weinberg

Mentions & Resources:

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“Why Greece’s Lenders Need to Suffer”

A recent interchange with [prominent trader appearing on my podcast]:

Name: Read: “Why Greece’s Lenders Need to Suffer”

Covel: Great ending paragraph:

“There is an unsentimental logic to markets. If you make a bad investment, you are supposed to pay the full price — because if you don’t pay the full price, you will keep making bad investments. The only way to get the bond market back to its historic role is to make bondholders feel real fear that they might lose money if they make bad decisions. We need the market to reward bets that are economically wise, instead of those that are politically savvy.”

Wonder if we ever get there….

Name: We will get back there because our government will run out of money like the Greeks’ government. Ours will be painful too.

Ep. 346: Gavin Serkin Interview with Michael Covel on Trend Following Radio

Gavin Serkin
Gavin Serkin

Michael Covel speaks with Gavin Serkin on today’s podcast. Serkin has been writing about developing economies for the better part of two decades as the Editor of Portfolio International magazine and more recently as the head of the emerging markets international desk at Bloomberg News in London. Serkin led Bloomberg’s coverage of the credit and derivatives markets from 2004 to 2008, winning the Society of American Business Editors & Writers’ Best in Business Award and the Society of Professional Journalists’ Deadline Club Award. Frontier, his new book, is a vivid travelogue of ten countries with the potential to lead economic growth in the coming decade. Covel and Serkin talk about safety issues in frontier lands; men and women in frontier countries; global brands and the direction we’re headed; going through Vietnam with Mark Mobius; Myanmar and violence; relations between the US, China, Vietnam, and Myanmar; Nigeria’s economy and where it’s headed. For more information on Gavin Serkin, visit frontierfunds.org.

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Ep. 342: Victor Ricciardi Interview with Michael Covel on Trend Following Radio

Victor Ricciardi
Victor Ricciardi

Michael Covel speaks with Victor Ricciardi on today’s episode of the podcast. Victor Ricciardi is an Assistant Professor of Financial Management at Goucher College. Professor Ricciardi is a leading expert on the academic literature and emerging research issues in behavioral finance. He is the editor of several eJournals distributed by the Social Science Research Network (SSRN). Ricciardi is also the co-editor of the book Investor Behavior: The Psychology of Financial Planning and Investing. Covel and Ricciardi discuss how Ricciardi found his way into behavioral finance; risk perception vs. risk tolerance; the affect and the anchoring heuristic; behavioral finance vs. behavioral economics; looking at behavioral finance in the context of specific strategies; behavioral economics in the context of asset bubbles and the popping of asset bubbles; why economic growth does not increase happiness; mindfulness as an assist in the notion of good decision-making; the notion of animal spirits; and the behavioral school vs. the classical school in academia.

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Ep. 339: Tim Price Interview with Michael Covel on Trend Following Radio

Tim Price
Tim Price

Michael Covel speaks with Tim Price on his second appearance on the podcast. Price is the London-based Director of Investment at PFP Wealth Management. Price has over 20 years of experience in both private client and institutional investment management. Price regularly shares his views on his blog, The Price of Everything. What can we see in the central banks? What actinos have taken place in the last few years? Covel and Price discuss why the fundamentals are so ‘shocking’; FDR and the Great Depression; why government taking its hands out of the equation can be the solution in a recession or depression; why savers suffer in silence; the three scenarios that occur when you accept that much debt simply cannot be paid back (growth, default, or inflation); the standoff between Germany and Greece, and how the average German might feel today about common currency; and the lack of outrage of zero interest rate policy. For more information on Tim Price, visit thepriceofeverything.typepad.com.

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Spyros Makridakis Interview Followup

A followup from a recent conversation with Spyros Makridakis:

Dear Mike,

It was nice to talk to you this morning. As I promised I am attaching the following three papers:

  • Medicine. This is an extract from an article I am writing about Forecasting and Uncertainty. It is amazing that the forecasting record of medicine is so dismal as it involves our lives and health.
  • Positive Illusions. This is a recent paper that will be published in a book of readings.
  • Why Forecasts Fail. A paper published in the Sloan Management Review that explains why forecasts fail and how I got involved in this line of research.

I am also attaching the cover copy of the book by Ablin (the guy who discovered the PSA test for prostate cancer) and his view about the validity of the test he discovered.

Let me know if I can be of any additional help and please send me the link of your podcast once it is ready.

Best,
Spyros Makridakis

Thanks!

Ep. 336: Colin Camerer Interview with Michael Covel on Trend Following Radio

Colin Camerer
Colin Camerer

Michael Covel speaks with Colin Camerer on today’s podcast. Camerer is an American behavioral economist and a Robert Kirby Professor of Behavioral Finance and Economics at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech). Camerer’s research is on the interface between cognitive psychology and economics. This work seeks a better understanding of the psychological and neurobiological basis of decision-making in order to determine the validity of models of human economic behavior. His research uses mostly economics experiments—and occasionally field studies—to understand how people behave when making decisions (e.g., risky gambles for money), in games, and in markets (e.g., speculative price bubbles). Covel and Camerer discuss why Camerer was called a child prodigy, and how he looks at that term in the context of nurture vs. nature; synthesizing behavioral economics and neuroscience; understanding Camerer’s studies when traders aren’t looking at the market on a day-to-day basis; how we can stimulate the brain to create a bubble; the ethical issues surrounding Camerer’s work; machine learning and data mining; neuroscience and game theory; comparing humans and chimps in the study of neuroscience; how trust correlates with economic growth; and how emotion functions in the modern world..

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