Category Archives: Psychology

Contrary Indicator

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I hesitated to post this because it puts an actual person up for ridicule, as opposed to the usual stuff I write about the “gold generals” or ‘stock market touts and trend followers’, etc. A reader sent along an email containing this link (and its very bearish current view of gold) and the video below.

Daniela (Aug. 24, 2011): “…this [Fed’s Op/Twist.] would create a bullish gold scenario?”

Puru: “Absolutely…”

also… “on the cusp of a massive uptrend in gold…” (more…)

Bear Despair

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Tonight I’m going to forego the usual quest for thin reeds on which to hang the equity bear case, and instead offer up reasons why all hope is lost for now. So here goes…..

First, the Dow Jones Composite has penetrated and successfully tested its former resistance line. This resistance is now acting as support, as illustrated by yesterday’s test of the line and today’s acceleration up and away from it.

1118-comp (more…)

Repulsive Attractant

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Indulge me in a bit of a thought experiment.

Let’s say there was a fellow here in Palo Alto named Brad. He told me that he had invented the world’s perfect tiger repellant. He simply sprayed it on, and voila, no tigers would bother him.

This was intriguing to me, because I had, in turn, created a tiger attractant. My claim was that this invisible spray would attract tigers from several miles away.

The trouble was, my spray just didn’t seem to work. Try as I might, no tigers ever appeared. Not even once. Back when I was roaming around Indonesia and Sumatra, tigers would show up all the time. But here in Palo Alto, it just didn’t work anymore. (more…)

Negative Feedback 2; Points Proven

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A couple weeks ago I wrote a post about some negative feedback (comes with the territory, if I am doing my job well enough) because I wrote about the very real economic performance that has so far come out of what I consider unsustainable and doomed to fail policy (and would be bullish for the gold sector I might add).

So I get to have some people call me a perma bear on one side and certain dogma defenders on the opposite side, both coming down on the writer who, right or wrong, is trying to clear out the b/s and just write the truth.

Now with the Gold Bug Psychology article I unsurprisingly I got the incoming from that camp as well. Even though I am twice the gold bug some of the dogma defenders are because I am not threatened by my position and am willing to state the truth as I see it. Nobody that I know of has put in the effort I have over the last decade in trying to describe gold as a value instrument and an insurance policy… and NOT a PLAY or a GAME. (more…)

Gold Bug Psychology Must be Neutered

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The precious metals bear market, beginning with silver’s blow out in early 2011 and the general top in the commodity and ‘inflation trade’ along with gold’s lesser blow out later that summer amidst Euro crisis hysterics, has been all about psychology. Well, every bear or bull market is about psychology, but the intensity of this dynamic has been something to behold in the gold sector over these last few years.

Psych 101

In early 2011 long-term interest rates were rising in response to inflationary pressures, ‘Bond King’ Bill Gross famously shorted the long bond, virtual mobs with pitchforks were storming the Fed’s castle calling for Ben Bernanke’s head and silver went to $50 an ounce, with calls for $100, $200, etc. All psychology my friends. (more…)

In Perpetuity

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I am not a stranger to disappointment. There have been plenty of times in my life when reality did not meet expectations. This probably gives me plenty in common with other fellow humans. It’s certainly not like things always go my way. Far from it.

Being a trader, this is a phenomenon that is almost universal. People anticipate what they think is going to happen, they position themselves for it, and reality dictates whether or not they profit or not. It’s the nature of the beast.

October was an extraordinary month. It was tremendously exhilarating for the first half, and it was soul-crushingly difficult during the second (this is from a bear’s perspective; flip the descriptors for bulls). As deeply oversold as we were on October 15th (and with the VIX in excess of 30), I certainly expected some kind of bounce – and I made no secret of it – but I absolutely did not expect a bounce of this size and vigor. (more…)

Pushed to the Brink

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October is turning out to be far more “trick” than “treat” for equity bears.

At the midpoint of the month, things looked sensational. Stocks were breaking down left and right, and it seemed that we had finally encountered a sea-change in the market.

Since then, however, stocks have exploded higher with a gusto that I underestimated. I certainly expected a bounce, but nothing of this degree. Much worse, it seems that the cessation of QE (announced yesterday) has done nothing to slow the equity bulls down.

This kind of environment can really mess with one’s head. Let’s take a look at the past couple of days on the ES: (more…)