Sunday, September 30, 2012

Peter Thiel and Reid Hoffman talk Silicon Valley, hits and misses

 

High profile Valley startup founders Peter Thiel and Reid Hoffman (of Paypal/Facebook and LinkedIn, respectively) discuss innovation in Silicon Valley, the coming mobile economy, and their greatest hits and misses in this Forbes video interview.

Related posts:

1. Elon Musk and Peter Thiel on entrepreneurship and creativity.

2. Mark Cuban: How to Get Rich + Success and Motivation

3. Steve Jobs: Billion Dollar Hippy (BBC documentary).

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Humans vs. algos: Mike Bellafiore on the future of trading

Mike Bellafiore of SMB Capital talks with MSN about humans vs. algos and the future of trading

A few notable quotes and points from Bella's interview: 

1. Bella and his traders don't look at the current environment as "man vs. machine". 

Instead, they trade around the computers. Most of the advantage that "black box" programs or algorithms have are based on micro-scalping, trading for sub-penny moves. SMB Capital traders have changed their methods, extended their trading time frames, and are adapting to the current market structure.

2. Play your own game. As Mike says, "Do your own thing, let the computers do their thing. Don't play that [computer's] game. Play a game that trades on a longer time frame. Find the trades that work for you."

3. On the large percentage of daily trading volume on US markets that is high-frequency trading (HFT) or machine-based: 

"We used to have market makers and they don't exist anymore. The HFTs became the market makers, but they're trying to make a penny or two cents. You're not trying to do that as a retail investor, you're trying to buy a stock because you have a thesis on it [holding for a directional trade or investment while managing your risk]".

4. Finally, Bella acknowledges the coming wave of exchange consolidations and technologies that will open up new opportunities in electronic trading. 

Increased access to new, international markets will increase our opportunities as traders, since patterns and underlying psychology will repeat themselves in other markets. 

Additionally, traders will learn to create their own automated programs to take advantage of new market opportunities. The future of speculation will be one in which traders apply techniques in their home markets to equity markets abroad, while also reaching into new products and asset classes.

Enjoy the interview, and ask yourself how you might prepare for the changes and opportunities ahead in a "smaller, and more connected" trading world. 

Related posts

1. Interview with Michael Bigger, trader and author

2. Mark Minervini interview: define and refine your approach.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Steve Jobs - Billion Dollar Hippy (BBC documentary)



Steve Jobs' brilliant life and entrepreneurial career are profiled in this BBC documentary, "Steve Jobs - Billion Dollar Hippy". 

Today is a big media day for Apple, given the hype surrounding the release of the new iPhone 5. A fine time to look back on the Silicon Valley landscape of the 1970s and the counterculture and tech hobbyist environments which inspired Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak to start their own little computer company (now valued at over $600 billion dollars, market cap). 

This is a great overview of Jobs' rise and fall at Apple, his entries into the realms of interpersonal computing and filmmaking at NeXT and Pixar, and his triumphant return to Apple that kickstarted its reinvention as a design-focused electronics company. 

Enjoy the video, and check out our related items below for more on Steve Jobs and the tech revolution.

Related posts

1. Steve Jobs PBS interview from 1990, rarely seen.

2. Interview: Steve Jobs and Bill Gates at D5.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Marc Faber on the global economy, bubbles, and inflation



Marc Faber offers some forecasts for the global economy in this recent Dubai hedge funds world conference video. 

Faber makes 2 important points at the outset of this talk.

First, he notes that at the start of his career (1970) investment banks were all private partnerships. Not a one was a publicly traded corporation, whereas today most large banks are listed corporations.

As a result, the risk profile at investment banks has completely changed from the days when partners at investment banks were personally liable for other people's mistakes. Today, bankers risk other people's money and face no real consequences for their mistakes. In fact, they are often bailed out with taxpayer funds when they go bust.

Secondly, Marc points out that the (neo-) Keynesians want to make interventions in the capitalist economy and "smooth out" the business cycle with fiscal and monetary measures. 

In Faber's view, these interventions have actually made fluctuations in the business cycle more violent and extreme. As he puts it, "the Keynesians always try to address long-term structural problems with short-term fixes...with an emphasis on creating bubbles to "help" the economy. Whereas bubbles usually hurt the majority of market participants." 

Check out the full presentation above for Faber's thoughts on how to navigate our global course of negative real interest rates, understated inflation, serial bubbles, and centrally planned markets. 

If you're enjoying these posts and would like to see more, please subscribe to our free RSS updates and follow Finance Trends in real-time on Twitter and StockTwits. You can also check out our related posts below for more market wisdom and trading insights.  


Related posts

1. Marc Faber: final crisis yet to come (video).

2. Nassim Taleb on Anti-fragility.

Tuesday, September 04, 2012

Elon Musk and Peter Thiel on entrepreneurship + creativity

Elon Musk (PayPal, Tesla Motors, SpaceX) and Peter Thiel (PayPal, Facebook, Palantir) discuss entrepreneurship, capitalism, creativity, the educational system, and their own experiences building innovative companies in these PandoMonthly interviews.