All posts by System Trader Success Contributor

Are your backtest results fooling you?

Fool

Have you ever started trading a strategy that performs well in the backtests but delivers a very different result when you begin trading it with real money?Could your backtest reports be fooling you by indicating a strategy is great but really only showing you part of the overall picture?How do you give yourself a better chance of developing […]

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Hedging a $500k Portfolio With Optimal Puts

Hedging a $500k Portfolio With Optimal Puts

A reader recently emailed me, asking how he could hedge a “typical $500k mutual fund portfolio”. I’m going to walk through a step-by-step example of doing that in this post.Step One: Choose A Proxy Exchange-Traded FundIf you own a portfolio of stocks or stock funds, you can hedge that portfolio against market risk by buying […]

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World’s Simplest Trading System

a-tree-on-the-horizon

Here’s the system: At the end of every month, * if the index is above its 10-month simple moving average: the portfolio is 100% in the market * if the index is below its 10-month simple moving average: the portfolio is 100% in cash  And that’s it. So, if we take the FTSE 100 Index […]

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9 Mistakes Quants Make that Cause Backtests to Lie

“I’ve never seen a bad backtest” — Dimitris Melas, head of research at MSCI. A backtest is a simulation of a trading strategy used to evaluate how effective the strategy might have been if it were traded historically. Backtestesting is used by hedge funds and other researchers to test strategies before real capital is applied. Backtests […]

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How to Trade the MACD: A High-level Analysis of the MACD Line Feature

Moving Average Convergence Divergence (MACD) is one of the most popular technical indicators used by traders. It is a flexible indicator that can be used for determining the strength and direction of a trend. It has three distinct features and in this first post we are going to do a high-level analysis of one of those […]

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Are you losing when you should be winning? Here’s something you might be missing

Most people think about where to get into and out of positions. Nearly all traders know how important it is to follow their rules, and the majority of them always work toward being more disciplined. These are important pieces of a successful investment strategy, and most traders work on these things. But there’s one thing […]

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Using a Self-Similarity Metric with Intraday Data to Define Market Regimes

The images above are the famous Sierpinski Triangle and the Koch Snowflake. These objects are “self-similar” and this means that examination at finer levels of resolution will reveal the same shape. Both are examples of “fractal” geometry, and are characteristic of many phenomena in the natural world such as mountains, crystals, and gases. Self-similar objects […]

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Sharpe Ratio – the right answer to the wrong question?

TradingEdgeVisualiser

Sharpe was the right answer First, let’s start with what Sharpe does well. There are two things it does well: Cross-asset unified measure: we all know that the most important component in alpha generation is asset allocation. Now, the difficulty is to have a single measure of risk-adjusted measure of alpha. This is where Sharpe […]

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Broken Strategy or Market Change: Investigating Underperformance

Broken Strategy

I recently had someone email me about the performance of a strategy I created back in late 2005/early 2006 and traded for a few years. I remember the strategy being a daily mean reversion set up with an intraday pullback entry. I figured it probably had not done well over the last decade. I stopped […]

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Creatures of Habit

human or algorithm executing entries and exits

“Creatures”, in this case =  human or algorithm executing entries and exits.I was searching for a generic photo that has the different days of the week, but in different languages, when I came across this graph, which shows historical Days of Week averages of patients waiting for CT scans… which you may think has absolutely […]

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