Read? Method, Money, and Mind
How many investors spent enough time seriously thinking about Money Management strategies?
I believe most investors tend to spend more time thinking on Method and trying to improve it; but don't forget that Money Management is important too.
From Larry William's Trading Rules:
5. Money management is the creation of wealth.
Sure, you can make money as a trader or investor, have a good time, and get some great stories to tell. But, the extrapolation of profits will not come as much from your trading and investing skills as how you manage your money.
I'm probably best known for winning the Robbins World Cup Trading Championship, turning $10,000 into $1,100,000.00 in 12 months. That was real money, real trades, and real time performance. For years people have asked for my trades to figure out how I did it. I gladly oblige them, they will learn little there - what created the gargantuan gain was not great trading ability nearly as much as the very aggressive form of money management I used. The approach was to buy more contracts when I had more equity in my account, cut back when I had less. That's what made the cool million smackers - not some great trading skill. Ten years later my 16-year-old daughter won the same trading contest taking $10,000 to $110,000.00 (The second best performance in the 20-year history of the championship). Did she have any trading secret, any magical chart, line, and formula? No. She simply followed a decent system of trading, backed with a superior form of money management.
6. Big money does not make big bets.
You have probably read the stories of what I call the swashbuckler traders, like Jesse Livermore, John 'bet a millions' Gates, Niederhoffer, Frankie Joe and the like. They all ultimately made big bets and lost big time.
Smart money never bets big. Why should it? You can win big on small bets, see #5 above, but eventually if you bet big you will lose - and you will lose big.
It's like Russian Roulette. You may well spin the chamber holding the bullet many times and never lose. But spin it often enough and there can be only one result: death. If you make big bets you are destined to be a big loser. Plunging is a loser's game; it can only set you up for failure. I never bet big (I used to - been there and done that and trust me, it is no way to live). I bet a small per cent of my account, bankroll if you will. that way I have controlled loss. There can be no survival without damage control.
Read more? Larry Williams - Trading Rules
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