On the Utter Folly of Hope

June 26, 2013
By
 

“The speculator’s chief enemies are always boring from within. It is inseparable from human nature to hope and to fear… The successful trader has to fight these two deep-seated instincts. He has to reverse what you might call his natural impulses. Instead of hoping he must fear; instead of fearing he must hope. He must fear that his loss may develop into a much bigger loss, and hope that his profit may become a big profit.”

- Reminiscences of a Stock Operator 

“Hope is not a strategy.”

- Rigo Durazo

“There is no worse course in leadership than to hold out false hopes soon to be swept away.”

- Winston Churchill

“It is not enough to rely on luck or hope to carry us past the weak parts of our game. These parts must be attended to. The system must be whole and complete.”

- Zen and the Art of Poker

“The belief in miracles that all men cherish is born of immoderate indulgence in hope. There are people who go on hope sprees periodically and we all know the chronic hope drunkard that is held up before us as an exemplary optimist.”

 - Reminiscences of a Stock Operator

“Whenever a trader says ‘I wish,’ or ‘I hope,’ he is engaging in a destructive way of thinking because it takes attention away from the diagnostic process.”

- Bruce Kovner

“Dramatic and emotional trading experiences tend to be negative. Pride is a great banana peel, as are hope, fear, and greed. My biggest slip-ups occurred shortly after I got emotionally involved with positions.”

- Ed Seykota

“Hope is independent of the apparatus of logic.”

- Norman Cousins

“Hope should never be in your vocabulary. It is the worst four-letter word I know. As soon as you say, ‘Boy, I hope this position comes back,’ you should reduce your size.”

- Mark Cook

“When you’re a market timer, you have to be equally good at going short and going long, and when the market changes sides, you can’t hold your position and hope it turns around.”

- Marty Schwartz

“When you’re trading well, you have a better mental attitude. When you’re trading poorly, you start wishing and hoping. Instead of getting into trades you think will work, you end up getting into trades you hope will work.”

- Randy McKay

“The big men of the Street are as prone to be wishful thinkers as the politicians or the plain suckers. I myself can’t work that way. In a speculator such an attitude is fatal. Perhaps a manufacturer of securities or a promoter of new enterprises can afford to indulge in hope-jags.”

- Reminiscences of a Stock Operator

JS Comment: 

Nothing further to add…

Recent Trading Wisdom (scroll for archives)

 

p.s. follow us on Stocktwits & Twitter! @MercenaryJack and @MercenaryMike

Like this article? Share!

One Response to On the Utter Folly of Hope

  1. Roy Cobden on June 26, 2013 at 8:14 pm

    Leave “hope” for lottery tickets & presidential elections…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.


Current ye@r *