Dug up this interview with Tudor from 2000, thought I'd share it with people who haven't read it. -Neo Paul Tudor Jones II is the president and founder of Tudor Investment Corporation, and was featured in Jack D. Schwagers classic "Market Wizards". This is an edited transcript from the interview, which was held at Paul Jones's office in Greenwich, Connecticut on January 13, 2000. Q: Can you briefly describe your background? Paul Tudor Jones: I went to high school at Memphis University school. My father went to Virginia Law School so he steered me to the University of Virginia. I went to Virginia from 1972 to 1976, majored in economics and had a great time. I really loved UVa. I graduated and went to work for Eli Tullis who was a Virginia graduate from New Orleans. He was a cotton speculator, maybe the biggest cotton speculator, and he gave me a job on the former New York cotton exchange and I began literally two weeks after I graduated from school. That's how I got into the futures markets. Q: What sparked your original interest in trading? Paul Tudor Jones: I went to New York and saw the floor of the commodities exchange and there was such an energy level there and so much excitement that I knew that was the place for me. I've always liked action and the exchange seemed like a perfect home for me. Q: When did you decide you wanted to run a fund? Paul Tudor Jones: In 1976 I started working on the floor as a clerk and then I became a broker for E.F. Hutton. In 1980 I went strictly on my own as what they called a local and did that for about two and a half years and had two and a half wonderfully profitable years, but I really got bored. I applied to Harvard Business School, got accepted and was about to go. I literally was packed up to go and then I thought, 'this is crazy', because for what I'm doing here, they're not going to teach me anything. This skill set is not something that they teach in business school. So I didn't go, I stayed, but I was really bored because there wasn't the personal interaction that was something that I craved and having colleagues and being in a clean atmosphere and that was when I started my fund. All through growing up I've been involved in team sports and fraternities and in school I was involved in a whole variety of activities all of which were team oriented and when I was on my own I was printing money every month, but I wasn't getting the psychic satisfaction from it Q: How would you describe your general investment philosophy? Paul Tudor Jones: I think I am the single most conservative investor on earth in the sense that I absolutely hate losing money. My grandfather told me at a very early age that you are only worth what you can write a check for tomorrow, so the concept of having my net worth tied up in a stock a la Bill Gates, though God almighty it would be a great problem to have, it would be something that's just anathema to me and that's one reason that I've always liked the futures market so much, because you can generally get liquid and be in cash in literally the space of a few minutes. So that always appealed to me because I could always be liquid very quickly if I wanted to. I'd say that my investment philosophy is that I don't take a lot of risk, I look for opportunities with tremendously skewed reward-risk opportunities. Don't ever let them get into your pocket - that means there's no reason to leverage substantially. There's no reason to take substantial amounts of financial risk ever, because you should always be able to find something where you can skew the reward risk relationship so greatly in your favor that you can take a variety of small investments with great reward risk opportunities that should give you minimum draw down pain and maximum upside opportunities. Q: How do you measure your performance? Paul Tudor Jones: You've got to look at good traders historically. If a trader can on average annually deliver two to three times their worst draw down, then that's a very good track record, and I'd say that that's what I try to do. If I thought that for the funds that I managed that 10% would be the worst that I would tolerate in a given year then hopefully I'd annualize two or three times that and that's probably what I've done. Maybe a little below that in the '90's and a little above that in the '80's. Q: What's your competitive advantage as a trader? Paul Tudor Jones: The secret to being successful from a trading perspective is to have an indefatigable and an undying and unquenchable thirst for information and knowledge. Because I think there are certain situations where you can absolutely understand what motivates every buyer and seller and have a pretty good picture of what's going to happen. And it just requires an enormous amount of grunt work and dedication to finding all possible bits of information. You pick an instrument and there's whole variety of benchmarks, things that you look at when trading a particular instrument whether it's a stock or a commodity or a bond. There's a fundamental information set that you acquire with regard to each particular asset class and then you overlay a whole host of technical indicators and that's how you make a decision. It doesn't make any difference whether it's pork bellies or Yahoo. At the end of the day, it's all the same. You need to understand what factors you need to have at your disposal to develop a core competency to make a legitimate investment decision in that particular asset class. And then at the end of the day, the most important thing is how good are you at risk control. Ninety-percent of any great trader is going to be the risk control. Q: Can you give an example? Paul Tudor Jones: Certainly. The one on a percentage basis that's been the most profitable for me was the crash of 1987. There was a tremendous embedded derivatives accident waiting to happen in the crash of '87 because there was something in the market that time called portfolio insurance that essentially meant that when stocks started to go down it was going to create more selling because the people who had written these derivatives would be forced to sell on every down-tick. So it was a situation where you knew that if you ever got to a point where the market started to go down that the selling would actually cascade instead of dry up because of the measure of these derivative instruments that had been written. And in the crash of '87 you had an overvalued market and you also finally had a situation where every down-tick would create more selling and I think I understood the dynamics of that. The crash was something that was imminently forecastable to somebody that understood the measure of derivatives and how large they had grown in such a relatively short period of time and the impact that it would have on a relatively unknowing and na'e market. And the same exact thing happened in 1990 in Japan. Q: So what is your opinion of the US equity markets now? Paul Tudor Jones: Clearly there are parts of the US equity markets that we've never seen anything like it anywhere in modern times in terms of valuation. The question is what's the trigger event that gets you to mean revert and whereas you had specific derivative inspired events in 1987, I don't see that now. So how long can these levels of overvaluation persist? I would think rather than seeing any type of really sharp break, what you might see prospectively is something that looks a lot more like '68 to '73 did where you had big rolling corrections and rotations and a market that doesn't really make any upside progress but with a lot of volatility that traverses big ranges.