A Technical Analysis Tournament?


Quill will stand by his investing/trading methods, and I by mine. But here’s the tiny little problem. It is very, very hard to find anyone who’s willing to do the work that investing/trading requires, even if they might have an interest in learning the gig. Worse, the US is tettering on the brink of bankrupcy, as are most of its citizens, who are scrambling to buy food and to pay rent and have zero discretionary cash to gamble with in the equity casinos. So, who’s playing in the equity casinos these days? Them with money and time to spare.

Years ago, Schwab was offering a $101 bonus to anyone who opened a brokerage account with at least a $100 deposit. Regrettably, that offer seems to have disappeared. But while it was on, I got several non-investing friends to open accounts, and I put them into trades on the broker’s money. Thus, they had none of their own money at risk, which was parked in an interest-bearing MM account. Regrettably, not a one followed up. Investing (or trading) just isn’t something most people have any interest in doing, because the game really is rigged, just as our dear gov’t is currently lying to us about everything.

But my thought is this. If an investing/trading method is sound, then average trade size doesn’t matter. If money can be made with $5 bets, such as Schwwb’s slices on the SP500, then money could be made if the bets were done 1,000 shares at a time. The downside of fractional share trading is the inability to trail stops. But if the would-be investor is trading EOD, as beginners should be, then putting on and taking off trades can be done pre- or post market. Fidelity also offers factional share trading through its “Baskets Program” at a cost of $5 per month, or less than most people waste on vile beverages such as coffee. Trading through Fido would offer access to to ETF inverses and a wider range of stocks. But there’s a real virtue in simplicity. If you want to do a technical analysis jousting tournament on just the stocks in the SP500, then I’m on.

Suggested rules:

  • Only stocks in the SP500 bought through Schwab’s ‘Slices Program’ (to reflect the small money most beginners have to work with).
  • All buy and sell orders have to be submitted pre- or post-market (to reflect the time situation most beginners have.)
  • All opening trades have to be equally sized. No averaging up or down. (This is a “get it right from the getgo, or get out” contest.)
  • The contest ends, and scores are tallied, when 100 round trips have been completed.
  • Scoring will be based on the Sortino Ratio. (Yeah, yeah. Risk-adjusted returns don’t spend any better at the grocery store or gas pump than absolute returns. But risk-adjusted returns is the measure of performance that professional money managers use.)


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Finding what Quill calls ‘at-the-gate’ stocks in the SP500 is like shooting fish in a barrel. Here are eight of them (as of market close today, Jun 27) of varying quality that further vetting would winnow down to a tradable 3 or 4.

Yes, for now, the tickers have been omited, because I despise what bikies call “wheelsuckers” and because the stock picks were produced by a scanner that’s no longer commerically available. But Schwab does offer a means to run technically-based scans, and if I can force it to reproduce what my own scanner provides, I’ll post the scanning parameters, because I do believe that tools should be freely shared, though not the products of those tools. Quill, of coure, gets a list of the tickers, because I know he knows how to pick and choose among them.