What About Futures?

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As I consider what new tools and content to create for Slope, I keep running against the same reality: is this market even worth analyzing? In other words, for the past thirteen years, the market has been completely fabricated and warped by the direct and persistent interference of the U.S. government. It isn’t a real market. So should even of us bother?

Let me offer a simple example: let’s say I announced the release of the greatest trading system of all time. It generated a “buy” signal when the 5 day average crossed above the 30 day, and a “sell” signal when the opposite took place. I had back-tested it against a dozen years of data, and it was profitable every year and beat the market handily. Pretty sweet, right? (I haven’t actually tested this, but I strongly suspect this “system”, which could have been conjured up by a 5 year old boy, would have had fabulous results since 2008.

Would that be a system to carry into the future? Well, yeah, if the market keeps going up forever. Absolutely. But this hare-brained system hasn’t been through the rigors of a real market which has big ups, big downs, and unpredictable cycles.

This predicament is why I became so enamored of crypto about a year ago: because it seems like an honest-to-God, actual, real live market where classic technical analysis actually………gasp………works!

Thus, I’m starting to wonder if I should devote more attention to other class of instrument which actually seems to manage to go both up and down, and isn’t interfered with every goddamned day by Jerome F. Powell: commodities. These include such markets as crude oil……….

slopechart CL


slopechart CME C


slopechart W


slopechart CME LB


slopechart ICE KC

……….and silver.

slopechart SI

As a data nerd, my concern about going down such a road is that commodity data is basically stuck in the 1970s model: it’s owned by a monopoly and crazy-expensive. Modern creations, like crypto, recognize the importance of widely-distributed data, so crypto data costs $nothing. The good people at the CME (and other exchanges) absolutely ream customers when it come to data costs, however, and I won’t even tell you what a general website license runs.

In spite of that, I at least wanted to share some interest commodity charts above, and muse out loud about maybe adding some more futures information to my beloved Slope. Because, frankly, equities are a joke.