Focus On The War, Not The Battle
Why do most traders lose most of the time?
Why is it so many investors will stay with a position as
it loses, hoping it will bounce back, instead of cutting
their losses? And why do those same investors, when they
have a winning position, take quick profits instead of
letting the trend play out?
It is all about emotions. Not wanting to lose. Wanting to feel good about a profitable
position. But unable to make consistent profits.
It's Not The Battle, It's The War
Too many market timers believe their last trade is a reflection of just how good
a timer they are (or how good their timing service is).
This boils down to one word - expectation.
If you expect to win all the time, or even the large majority of the time, you're
setting yourself up for a lot of heartache.
And the sad fact is, if you believe market timing is about winning all the time,
you are also setting yourself up to be one of those many thousands of losing
To win as a market timer, you must focus on the war - not the battle.
we can make all of our subscribers recognize that
sticking to the strategy over time is the key to
success, we will have accomplished a great deal."
The fact of the matter is, this is to a large degree a
game of odds, and should be played over a long period of
time. Those market timers who recognize this fact, and
do not pull out during a losing position will be the winners
in the end.
Market timing is about beating the markets, and all those "other" thousands
of losing investors, over time. It is about following a timing strategy through
thick and thin, and profiting over time.
We write about this frequently because we are just as human as our subscribers.
We know the emotions. We know the pressures. If we can make all of our subscribers
recognize that sticking to the strategy over time is the key to success,
we will have accomplished a great deal.
The FibTimer historical trade pages (available by link from all subscriber
reports) show the excellent profits we have made over the years. They also
show small losing trades. It is to be expected in market timing and in fact
in all trading. Be prepared for them so that they are not unexpected, and over
time you will be successful.
The "Worry" Factor
All humans worry. If we didn't worry, we might take dangerous risks, and pay
a steep price.
Worrying is normal in our lives, and has an important function.
However, worrying becomes a problem when you do it too often and for no good
reason. For example, if your last timing trade was a loss, and you worry about
it, you tend to think the same thoughts over and over again. It doesn't help
much and you are likely to let it interfere with your ability to execute the
next timing signal.
Excessive worrying "can" be a problem for successful market timing.
If you are the kind of person who worries all the time, it may interfere with
your ability to pay attention to executing your market timing strategy.
The solution? Think "long term." Remember, it is the "war" you are trying
to win, not the current battle.
The Difference Between Winning Timers And Losing Timers?
LOSING market timers have unrealistic expectations about the kind of
profits they can make, typically shooting too high.
Losing market timers also debate with themselves before executing buy and sell
decisions, and even dwell on a position long after it's closed out.
Losing market timers pay little attention to money management, tending to enter
and exit trades emotionally.
And critically, losing market timers have no clear plan
how, or when, to exit.
WINNING market timers follow a strategy that uses strict money and risk
management rules which keep them in a winning position as long as possible,
and protect them against large losses.
Winning market timers obey their chosen timing strategy faithfully, knowing
it will not be profitable all the time, but that over time it will
beat the market, and it will never allow them to lose substantial capital in
a bear market.
Winning timers take action instead of suffering "analysis paralysis."
Winning market timers never allow emotions to take over,
or have any part in, their timing decisions.
Hopefully this second description fits you better, but if the first one seems
a little too familiar, you now at least know how to start getting past that
Why Do We Focus On Emotions?
We have been asked many times why we focus so much on emotions in our weekly
Allowing emotions to affect trading decisions is the number one reason why
most investors lose money in the financial markets. Allowing emotions to affect
timing decisions is also the number one reason why market timers fail.
it is the "war" you are trying to win, not the
When emotions enter the picture, timers jump the gun on
buy and sell signals. They exit positions before the strategy
tells them to. Emotions cause them to abandon a perfectly
good timing strategy and, almost always, it happens at
a time when they wind up losing money.
Why? Emotions run highest when you are in a losing position. But losing positions
are an absolute certainty! So be prepared for them, or be prepared to make
bad decisions, and lose capital.
Giving in to emotions, makes you one of the vast herd of followers, trying
to out-think everyone else, but in reality you are just moving with the herd.
And the herd always loses in the end.
To be successful at market timing, and in fact to be successful at any trading,
you must follow a strategy that "removes" emotion from the equation.
This means your trading plan "must" be totally removed from any discretionary
If you can change the trade, you will!
And if you change the trades, eventually you will lose.
Choose strategies that match your emotional trading style, whether aggressive
or conservative (and hopefully a diversified mix of both) and stay with them.
The market timer who stays the course, winds up with the gains we post on the
website on our trade history pages.
Recent articles from the FibTimer market timing services;
Quick Profits vs. The Virtue Of Patience
Reaping Rewards Over Time
Emotions And Trading
Controlling Impulses Key To Market Timing Profitability
The Irrational Investor
Two Emotions That Can Influence Your Trading
A Market Timer's Worst Enemy
For prior commentaries still posted on the website, Click
© Copyright 1996-2010, Market Timing Strategies, Inc.,
All Rights Reserved.
FibTimer reports may not be redistributed without
Disclaimer: The financial markets are risky. Investing is
risky. Past performance does not guarantee future performance.
The foregoing has been prepared solely for informational
purposes and is not a solicitation, or an offer to buy or
sell any security. Opinions are based on historical research
and data believed reliable, but there is no guarantee that
future results will be profitable.