i agree i think, but you need to be able to know how to react, so evaluate all opportunities. ie it would be foolish to predict whether the fed will ease or not, but its important to know how to react in both circumstances
Of course (some?) markets can be predicted. Did anyone else here not see astronomical Greek yields and a default or whatever you want to call it? Ditto for Spain and the other PIIGS. Did anyone think this would cause the Euro to rise? How would this effect this effect european stocks? Not rocket science is it?
Being sufficiently capitalised, informed and knowledgeable to be able to exploit the above whilst handling the volatility and managing your risk exposure in any meaningful way (reacting) is Teh Hard.
Unless you're only banging out short term intraday stuff with a view to holding winners in the long term... different kettle of fish imho but still not balck and white
Short answer... the question and poll is stupid and entirely dependant on how you trade.
I think I'll post more seriously now and say that the text in quotes is incorrect. I first thought of it as a perspective on either party's end, but it isn't what I would do in either's shoes.
I believe that in uncertain situations, to deal with uncertainty implies you want to minimize risk by obtaining some certainty of some sort. In trading, this is done by analyzing price/industries/etc. until you find common patterns based on experience. And from these patterns you form probability models of future behaviour. I find this is a very discretionary take.
Now, where I find the quoted text to be wrong is in assuming either party is wrong/right with a certain worldview. My take is the following:
- Based on experience, you have an idea of the range of probability of possible outcomes.
- Again based on experience, you have come to recognize these.
- You have then trained yourself to capitalize on these.
As such, there are three elements I think any competitor has ingrained into his being:
1) Anticipation. (Not to be confused with prediction!)
In other words, you have a certain view of a possible outcome. Once you identify a cue telling you the market/opponent/etc. has tipped its hand, you immediately react to the opportunity/danger. This part should be unconscious if done correctly. The last part is the execution of your plan/strategy. This is what you have trained yourself to do and you execute it once the cue has been triggered. Flawless execution requires sound psychology or a stable mental state (i.e. being "in the Zone").
Now, note that nothing in this has to do with right/wrong decisions. It is about specialized training to achieve a specific outcome in certain circumstances. I believe the military goes by this credo as do athletes or strong competitors.
So both the King and the Slave are wrong (or at least incomplete in their formation!). Prediction is part of what everyone does to attempt to put a certain outcome to future events, but it is also based on experience. Whether this predictions comes true or not is of no consequence; it all depends on how much you invested in this outcome.
At the other end of the spectrum, you have pure reaction. While animals of instinct probably use this to save themselves at all costs, I believe it leads to ruin when faced up vs. an opponent who will adapt to you as well. You will become predictable as your life-saving reactions are ingrained and difficult to re-train.
In conclusion, I believe proper decision-making has more to do with watching if a particular outcome shows more chances of happening than another. The rest is waiting for the right cue to trigger your inner training that then unconsciously, flawlessly executes motions that deal with the situation.
If following the above, then I think anyone's Kung-Fu would be strong. You are a well-oiled machine ready to kill at the drop of a hat.