Rcanfiel: What Doesn't Work on Wall Street

Discussion in 'Psychology' started by Duref Mudgins, Sep 14, 2007.

  1. Please join me in welcoming Rcanfiel to this interview. I asked him to join us because his posted views have generated a lot of commentary from other ET luminaries like MarketSurfer and ProfLogic in this now simmered-down thread:


    I have no axe to grind either way, but I thought that given the amount of heat generated, perhaps we should shed some light.

    So as usual, kind readers, let's keep it polite and take time to learn about our interviewee and how he came to his strong beliefs. Whereas ET in general demonizes, we here humanize.

    So, to begin. Rcanfiel, would you please tell us a bit about yourself, whatever personal information you are comfotable sharing? Such as age, nationality, geographic location, education, profession, how you came to trading. I assume you have seen the other interviews. What we want is to place you in a context from which we can build understanding. Thanks!
  2. Hello, and thanks for bringing this format of interview process. I have seen some of the interviews, and it is nice to drill down into the motivations and inner workings of traders.

    As some others, I don't really don't want to get into the personal identifying details on the web. I will say I live in the USA, and have an MS in Computer Science. One thing that is nice about mathematic and engineering disciplines, is that it tends to make you a strong problem solver.

    My profession is the IT industry. Among other things I have done, is business analyst, BPR, writing and usability within the software field.

    How I came to trading? I invested in mutual funds for some years originally. And as it happened for many other futures traders, I became intrigued by a glossy brochure from the man in the cowboy hat (Ken Roberts). That started some 13-14 years ago, I believe.
  3. How interesting! That's three of us so far in these interviews with computer science backgrounds! I would say that in addition to problem solving, it drives us to attempt to algorithmize what we see and to be specific numerically. Not to mention that we can toss off code in our sleep.

    And thanks for your kind remarks about the threads.

    I take it from your rough chronology that you are at the age where death is no longer optional. I sympathize.

    Now I don't know you, and haven't yet had the time to read more than a few of your posts. Are you an active trader? Or more of an analyst? Not trying to cast any aspersions on investing, we all have to do it, just want to get the scene set. And if you do trade actively, can you tell us what instrument and what time frame?
  5. Thanks for your thorough replies. So is it fair to characterize you as a swing trader working solely off of daily charts?

    BTW, my GP says I have anywhere from 30 seconds to 30 years to live, he can't tell which, but just in case, he says: "Get out of my office now!"
  6. Since Mr. Rcanfiel has held court in the TA thread and conducted himself with masterful authority, it would be interesting to have an idea of his trading performance. Would you kindly pass this question along, since I do believe that Mr. R has me on ignore.

    (He's not a relation, is he?)
  7. Thanks for your thorough replies. So is it fair to characterize you as a swing trader working solely off of daily charts?

    I am not so sure anything "characterizes" my work. Price is certainly important. My opinion about classical TA is obviously known. I am constantly amazed at the litany of publications and web offerings about Gann, EW, Fibonacci and other things that bounce around as if they represent hidden knowledge.

    Some of the clearest reasoning I often see for Fib is that since it is so prevalent in nature, therefore it must necessarily drive the market. That reminds me of the saying that "if I sit in the garage, I must be a car!!!"

    BTW, my GP says I have anywhere from 30 seconds to 30 years to live, he can't tell which, but just in case, he says: "Get out of my office now!"

  8. Chien-qui-Tonne, I would not deceive you of all people that way, although it would have been great good fun to get my betters all wound up like that. So I have quoted you for his benefit. I don't believe that I have been so rude as to inquire of anyone's profitability, beyond asking if they support themselves from trading.
  9. I merely refer to percentage returns on an unknown capital base. It is none of my business or anyone else's how much money someone makes.

    Your betters, eh? :p

    (FYI, even though I share a lot of his opinions about most of what passes for TA, dealing with his general smugness is quite character building.)
  10. I am going to change up the order of my questions, then, based on your response. I wanted to interview you to get a concise explication of your views on classical TA, which I will solicit in a bit, without all the catcalling that occurred on the thread. Not that I am agreeing with you, mind. I just want to hear you out.

    But first this question: do you think it is a good idea for an aspiring trader to read books on trading? If not, why not? But if so, please identify a few that you would recommend.
    #10     Sep 14, 2007