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Ep. 363: Blair Hull Interview with Michael Covel on Trend Following Radio

Blair Hull
Blair Hull

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Continuing the theme of speculation and gambling from the previous episode, today’s Trend Following Radio guest is Blair Hull. Hull got his start playing blackjack in Nevada casinos, and later moved onto trading. He founded his investment firm, Hull Investments, in 1999. The company, which leveraged technological innovations and quantitative models, was one of the world’s premier market-making firms, trading on 28 exchanges in nine countries.

The parallels in Hull’s approach to gambling and trading are many. He stresses the importance of objectivity and sticking to the system, especially during a losing streak when emotions run high. It’s not only about brain power, it’s about discipline.

In this interview, Blair Hull and Michael Covel talk about the parallels between blackjack and stock trading, the importance of money management and discipline when following systems, and the future of trading and market prediction.

In this episode of Trend Following Radio:

  • The importance of having a strategy and sticking to it
  • Why money management and discipline are key to trading success
  • Objectivity vs. emotions in blackjack and stock trading
  • Choosing the right markers and variables
  • Consumption as a function of income and wealth
  • The future of market prediction and machine learning

“We get fearful at the wrong times, we get greedy at the wrong times, when we have to stick to a specific plan.” – Blair Hull

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Ep. 361: Francisco Vaca Interview with Michael Covel on Trend Following Radio

Francisco Vaca
Francisco Vaca

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Francisco Vaca can be called a second generation turtle trader. He worked with Richard Dennis at C & D Commodities, and for the last 15 years has been closely associated with Paul Rabar. He is now the Co Chief Investment Officer at Rabar Market Research.

Before he became a trader, Vaca was a particle physicist and worked at the famous Fermi lab. This is not an insignificant fact, as his background in mathematics and statistics became very useful in his career as a trader.

In this second interview with Michael Covel, Francisco Vaca talks about evaluating the short-term and long-term performance data of fund managers, the benefit of using trend following systems across the entire time spectrum, trend anticipating techniques, and using modern technology in trading.

In this episode of Trend Following Radio:

  • The importance of distinguishing between long term and short term track records
  • “Alpha” and “beta” trading strategies
  • How the holding period length affects the risk-reward profile and return streaks
  • The benefits of diversification across different holding times
  • Using high frequency trading technology in long term trend following
  • How correlations are often misinterpreted
  • Knowing the limitations of your tools

“The best performing system historically is not necessarily the best system going forward” – Francisco Vaca

Mentions & Resources:

Listen to this episode:

Rate and Review Trend Following Radio on iTunes

Get the foundation to making money in up, down and *surprise markets on the Trend Following mailing list.

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