The Wisdom of the Net – Money Sense

February 21, 2009

423290059_ee0548f77e_mI know this may come across as a trifle hared; but 2008 was a very good year – not only did I manage to triple my stock portfolio; I even managed to ace the S & P with a few times to spare – for the better part of 2008, it flowed sweet and clear.


Most of my friends are duly impressed that I got out of the stock market just before it took a swan dive; that seems to be the main topic of conversation whenever we met together for drinks – “that’s the man who went the other way; when the whole world headed South” – “he’s got all the cool moves all lined up.” Yes, I admit, I am vain and I don’t even mind keeping silent about it as it seems to serve them pointing to a myth.


Only I need to be perfectly frank and honest about it; cutting the right moves has nothing to do with skill and everything to do with intuition – that’s to say when I pour out the marbles on a table and begin to separate the good from the bad; I cant even tell you for certain how I managed to make all the right moves. A big part of me tells me; it may not even be a conscious decision – so there you have it, the truth.


Truth is I am capable of selling myself on just any point that takes my fancy and it doesn’t even have to make sense either – its not realistic to believe every decision I make has to be based on something monumentally logical and sound, usually it isn’t – I once dropped everything; boarded a plane and traveled half way across a world because a woman who I cared for once told me she was on the verge of dying; and when we met I realized she had lied, as all she really wanted was to see me; I didn’t even get angry all I could think about when I saw her was how good I felt about seeing her again and it was much latter than the brain and the heart kicked in; when I began to serious wonder whether I would still have a job when I returned to Singapore – my point is it felt too right to claim a wrong and sometimes it pays to go with the gut rather than the mind.


I guess, what I am trying to say is its not always true to say the best decisions are those made under cool and rational judgement – that may be true in some cases, but it doesn’t hold true all the time. For me the part that I struggle constantly with; is when do I let go and when do I pick up the slack by going with the mind?  


To be honest with you; I dont know and there is a very good reason for that – I dont really trust myself and I’ve made plenty of decisions which I have simply regretted no end. Enough probably to sink a few battleships ten times over. 


Yet on the otherhand, I’ve also aced it in ways which still continues to marvel me no end. 


If I had to pin it down to a nub; I will ONLY go with something because it feels right; like when I decided to pull out the stock market sometime back in the middle of last year – it felt just right then, despite my own broker giving me sidelong looks of “well, I don’t know….”


I realized some people may keep telling you; this economic crisis was unforeseeable and if you press them, they could probably come up with 10 bullet points why getting it wrong isn’t so wrong after all – I don’t agree with that take as its misleading.


That may be true if all live offers is one side of the coin but many people have also managed to came out from this crisis smelling sweeter than when they jumped in – not everyone made losses – many doubled and tripled and even quadrupled their portfolios – only I think what really separated the losers from the winners this time wasn’t intelligence or raw skill; but rather something so common and basic that it may even be something that you don’t even need to go to Harvard or Princeton to acquire – trust your gut feel.


And they say there are only lies and disinformation online – well this time, it all came out sweet and clear.


Thanks, the internet for saving my chops – again! Owe you a big one there Mr Internet.


Darkness 2009

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