Maintain your old Siemens Hipath system

Risk and Reward

If you are doing your own investing in the stock market, what would be the first question you would ask yourself before you make any trade or investment? If your answer is how fundamentally sound the stock is, or whether the stock just broke out of a trading range on a chart, or the fact that the stock has gone down 50% in the last 6 months, or whether the volatility is low now so it is a good time to buy or sell, then you are probably on the road to ruin. These strategies have nothing in common with each other and there are all kinds of different criteria that I did not mention that have nothing in common with each other. However no matter what type of strategy you use to make your investment decisions, there is only one crucial question that must be asked before you pull the trigger and make the trade. That is, what is my risk and what is my reward on this trade. Even if you are going to buy a stock and hold it for a long time, you still have to be aware of your risk and your reward. Why? Because the entire stock market may be here for the rest of your life, any one stock might not be. You think, that is okay I diversified a lot so I don't need to know risk and reward. Wrong.

Diversification is great, but you should still be aware of the risk and reward because even indexes of the entire market have a risk and a reward, depending on the length of time invested. Point of entrance, exit, stops, and diversification, are all important things, but they by themselves are not risk and reward. You have to ask yourself how much am I risking, and what my potential reward is. How much are the important words

Okay how do I do that? Well first you must define your investment strategy. If you want to buy and hold what exactly does that mean. Hold for 5 years, 10 years, or forever? What is forever? If you are 20 years old forever is different than if you are 55. Also if you are buy and holding, is forever when you stop investing or is it when you start withdrawing money? These are important questions that must be answered specifically. You might say it doesn't matter because I will be diversified with index funds for the next 15 years. Okay let me ask these questions. Are you 100% invested at all times? Do you know the maximum drawdown (the largest loss from the index high and low in any 15 year period) for the index you invested in? Are you able to financially withstand that kind of drawdown? Alright, I know these are a lot of questions and all you want to do is invest in an index mutual fund for the next 15 years and forget about it.

Well I am going to say right now that if you think you are taking very little risk on 15 years you are wrong. If you bought the S&P 500 in a 100% position in 1965 and needed the money in 1980 you would have made no return on investment and had a 40% drawdown from 1969 to 1975. If you look at the period of 1930 to 1955, a 25 year period it is even worse. I know it's the great depression and things are different today. Don't assume anything. I am not saying that you should not invest. I am just saying that there is a risk and a reward. Every time you trade whether it is once a week or once every 15 years, that trade has a chance of winning and a chance of losing. Also, when you buy a managed mutual fund for 15 years you are not buying and holding. You are buying and selling but you are paying a professional to do it for you. He or she will have draw downs in the fund and hopefully he or she will be looking at risk and reward for you. Even an index fund held for 15 years is not truly buy and hold because the indexes change on a yearly basis. Some stocks come in the index and some stocks go out of the index. The longer the time span, say 40-55 years, the bigger the risk but the bigger the reward. Also the longer the time span, the longer you can withstand a large drawdown if it comes.

Now what if you are trading stocks with an entry and an exit point already predefined; that is where do I get in and where do I get out. That strategy might be good but that is not risk and reward. The most important question is how much am I invested and how much do I get out. What is the % of risk on each stock position in the portfolio and what is the risk to the total portfolio. Let's take an example. You bought 100 shares IBM @50 for $5000 in a total portfolio of $200.000. You put a sell stop loss to sell all 100 shares if IBM goes to $40 / share. That means your risk on IBM is $10 / share or $1000. But your real risk to your portfolio is .5% or $1000 divided by $200,000. If you have a sell exit point of $100 then your reward on the stock would be 100% and the reward to your total portfolio was 2.5%. So your total risk to reward was 5 to 1. You could crunch numbers all day to make up formulas to fit your strategy, but the most important part is how much are you risking. Here are some general rules when it comes to risk:

Don't risk more than 2% on any given trade or idea. That doesn't matter if your strategy is technical or fundamental or discretionary. Risking 1% would be safer. Most large fund managers risk much less.

Diversify. Buying 1% risk on IBM and 1% on Dell and 1% on Hewlard Packard is a 3% risk because they all sell the same products

Don't risk more than 20% of your portfolio at any one time, 10% would be better. You have to have a way to quantify the greed factor or it might consume you and all your money at the same time.

In my own portfolios I try not to risk more than 7% on an initial portfolio position.

Initial risk and on going risk can be two different risks. As a trade becomes profitable the amount of at risk at any moment in time can be a variable not a constant. That would allow for letting profits run while cutting losses short. However, making your initial risk a variable in most cases would be a disaster. Once initial risk is conceived it should never be increased. Greed may become the primary factor in increasing initial risk and that is always a fast track to increasing losses.

I hope that risk and reward become the primary strategy concern in your future investing and trading.

About The Author

John McKeon- pivate placement fund manager and owner of buypanic.com, an investment newsletter. I also have over 25 years experience in trading with a specialization in stock index trend following.

info@buypanic.com

In The News:

France's 40C heatwave 'potentially dangerous', forecasters warn
Tue, 25 Jun 2019 10:38:00 +0100
France is taking extra precautions ahead of a "potentially dangerous" heatwave that is set to hit much of Europe this week. 

Trump threatens 'obliteration' if Iran attacks 'anything American'
Tue, 25 Jun 2019 10:53:00 +0100
Donald Trump has warned Iran that an attack on "anything American" will be met with "great and overwhelming force", with parts of the country facing "obliteration".

'It was a fun life': YouTuber found dead after final video
Tue, 25 Jun 2019 18:15:00 +0100
The body of a popular YouTube personality has been found almost a week after he went missing.

NYC helicopter crash pilot 'did not know where he was'
Tue, 25 Jun 2019 20:29:00 +0100
A pilot who died after his helicopter crashed into the roof of a New York City skyscraper in rain and fog "did not know where he was", according to a preliminary report into what happened.

Cricket legend Brian Lara rushed to hospital after suffering chest pains
Tue, 25 Jun 2019 13:21:00 +0100
West Indies cricket legend Brian Lara has been taken to hospital in India after suffering chest pains.



tikatoshop.it

Erfahrungen mit Pallhuber Wein
Agen Bola SBOBET Terpercaya

Travel in comfort and at your leisure with CT Airlink Limousine & Car Service for top quality private transportation and exceptional customer service. We operate Sedans, SUVs & Vans for CT Car Services to covering all Connecticut airports including Car Service from CT to Newark Airport , Mohegan Casino Uncasville CT, Foxwoods Casino Mashantucket CT, Manhattan Cruise Terminal NYC, Brooklyn Cruise Terminal NYC and Bayonne Cruise Terminal NJ. CT Airlink hire licensed and friendly chauffeurs who have in-depth knowledge of the Areas.

How to Invest Your Money

Think carefully on how to invest your money because if... Read More

The Dreaded Direct Question

(Please have a glass of water within reach before reading... Read More

Can Using Sales Leaseback Method of Investment Property Acquisition Reduce Risk?

Sales Leaseback compared to traditional property investmentCan a Sales Leaseback... Read More

Focus Your Investments on the Long Term

"All human power is a compound of time and patience!"... Read More

June 2005: Weather Forecasts for Weather Traders

If Johannes Kepler, the renowned 17th century astronomer and discoverer... Read More

Begging Your Trust in Africa

The syntax is tortured, the grammar mutilated, but the message... Read More

Learn How to Lose and Risk Management

One of the leading traders on Chicago Mercantile Exchange, because... Read More

Going Against the Conventional Investment Wisdom

First of all, I want to give everyone the disclaimer... Read More

Bankers in Denial

Denial is a ubiquitous psychological defense mechanism. It involves the... Read More

An Introduction to Offshore Investing

Once upon a time, offshore investment strategies were spoken of... Read More

Why have Investment Plans for the Stock Market

If you do not have an investment plan in the... Read More

Is Starting A Business For Me? What To Consider Before Starting A Business

Do you have the right temperament?Starting a small business is... Read More

The Benefits of Laddering Your CD Investments

If you've decided to stock some money away in a... Read More

Making It Second Nature

Not long ago I was laying on my son's floor... Read More

Expand Your Pool of Investors for Your Company

If you own a company that sells complicated products and... Read More

Planning Starts with the Basics

When developing a plan for your finances, the toughest question... Read More

Help with My Annuity

The cries are heard from the distance, "I need help... Read More

Why You Need To Buy and Sell Gold Coins (Part 2)

How to Collect Rare Coins For Fun and ProfitTime has... Read More

Fundamentals of Option Pricing

When one begins to consider an option, it is very... Read More

Exchange Traded Funds

They call 'em ETFs.There are hundreds of them.The mutual funds... Read More

Tyranosaurus Rex

Everyone knows T Rex was the most fearsome of all... Read More

Powerful Options Basics Lessons Improving your trading in 180 days.

An option is a traded security that is a derivative... Read More

Margin Benefits are Marginal at Best

Margin is one of those things that novices find puzzling... Read More

Sitcom Investing

A fickle stock market encourages good-humored mockery.Recently, as I watched... Read More

Inflation Proof Your Investment Portfolio with ETF?s

Even though inflation has been relatively quiet in the U.S.... Read More