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Finance Quotations – 04

March 19th, 2009

Beware the investment activity that produces applause; the great moves are usually greeted by yawns.
Warren Buffett

When investing, pessimism is your friend, euphoria the enemy.
Warren Buffett

Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect.
Mark Twain

Anyone who lives within their means suffers from a lack of imagination.
Oscar Wilde

I can’t give you a formula for success, but I can give you a formula for failure: try to please everybody all the time.
Herbert Bayard Swope

Many a false step was made by standing still
Fortune Cookie

Named must your fear be before banish it you can.

Action may not always bring happiness, but there is no happiness without action.
Benjamin Disraeli

It’s lonely at the top. Ninety-eight percent of the people in this world are convinced they are incapable of achieving great things. So they aim for the mediocre. The level of competition is thus fiercest for ‘realistic’ and ‘mediocre’ goals, paradoxically making them the most time and energy-consuming, and the most difficult to achieve. Do not overestimate the competition and underestimate yourself. Unreasonable and ‘unrealistic’ goals are easier to achieve than you think.
Timothy Ferriss

One does not accumulate but eliminate.  It is not daily increase but daily decrease.  The height of cultivation always runs to simplicity.
Bruce Lee

Perfection is not when there is no more to add, but no more to take away.
Antoine De Saint-Exupery

It is vain to do with more what can be done with less.
William of Occam

What gets measured gets managed.
Peter Drucker

A man is rich in proportion to the number of things he can afford to let alone.
Henry David Thoreau

All courses of action are risky, so prudence is not in avoiding danger (it’s impossible), but calculating risk and acting decisively.  Make mistakes of ambition and not mistakes of sloth.  Develop the strength to do bold things, not the strength to suffer.
Niccolo Machiavelli

If you must play, decide on three things at the start: the rules of the game, the stakes, and the quitting time.
Chinese Proverb


Finance Quotations – 03

February 18th, 2009

Finance Quotations – 03

Famous Finance, Business, Trading, and Investing Quotations

The following are quotes from Edwin Lefevre’s investment classic Reminiscences of a Stock Operator.  Unless otherwise noted the quotes are of trading legend Jesse Livermore using the fictional character Lawrence Livingston.  Visit this site for a detailed summary of Reminiscences of a Stock Operator.

There is nothing new in Wall Street.  Because speculation is as old as the hills.  Whatever happens in the stock market today has happened before and will happen again.

The big money is made by sitting, not thinking.  Men who can both be right and sit tight are uncommon.

The point is not so much to buy as cheap as possible or go short at top price, but to buy or sell at the right time.

I never argue with the tape.

There is nothing like losing for teaching you what not to do.

There are only two emotions in the market, hope and fear – the only problem is you hope when you should fear and fear when you should hope.

Whenever things didn’t come out as they should, I’d quit.  There was no sense in arguing.  The pressing need when one is wrong is to quit quick.  I always cut short my losses.

There is only one side to the stock market; and it is not the bull side or the bear side, but the right side.

The big money is in the big swing.  And no matter who opposes it, the swing must run as far and as fast and as long as the impelling forces determine.

Nowhere does history indulge in repetitions so often or so uniformly as in Wall Street.  When you read contemporary accounts of booms or panics the one thing that strikes you most forcibly is how little either stock speculation or stock speculators today differ from yesterday.  The game does not change and neither does human nature.

Never try to sell at the top.  Sell after a reaction (correction) if there is no (recovery) rally.

I cleared about three million dollars in 1916 by being bullish as long as the bull market lasted and then by being bearish when the bear market started. A man does not have to marry one side of the market till death do them part.

It has always seemed to me the height of damfoolishness to trade on tips.

To make money in the market, I never buy at the bottom and I always sell too soon.
Baron Rothchild

If you owe a bank a dollar and can’t pay, you have  a problem.  If you owe them a million and can’t pay, they have a problem.
Mark Twain

The smarter they are the easier it (the market) fools them.
Edwin Lefevre
Reminiscences of a Stock Operator

The repetitions of history serve but to annoy youth.
Edwin Lefevre
Reminiscences of a Stock Operator

Cause of death: Acute bearishness in a bull market.  Not an obscure disease.  How did he come to contract it, with all his experience and skill?  Because he was a human being.  That is why the game beats them all.
Edwin Lefevre
Reminiscences of a Stock Operator


Finance Quotations – 02

January 22nd, 2009

Finance Quotations – 02

Famous Finance, Business, Trading, and Investing Quotations

A trader’s job description is stunningly simple: don’t lose money.
Richard Donchian

Wall Street never changes, the pockets change, the suckers change, the stocks change, but Wall Street never changes, because human nature never changes.
Jesse Livermore

The criterion of truth is that it works even if nobody is prepared to acknowledge it.
Ludwig von Mises

Success demands singleness of purpose.
Vince Lombardi

When the mind is in a state of uncertainty the smallest impulse directs it to either side.
Publius Terentius After

Lenny (Dykstra) was so perfectly designed, emotionally, to play the game of baseball. He was able to instantly forget any failure and draw strength from every success. He had no concept of failure. I was the opposite.
Billy Beane, Moneyball

Life is too dynamic to remain static.
John W. Henry

History does not repeat itself, people just keep forgetting.
Jason Russell

Knowing others is wisdom. Knowing self is enlightenment. Mastering other requires force. Mastering self requires strength.
Lao Tsu

If there is one trait that virtually all effective leaders have, it is motiviation. They are driven to achieve beyond expectations – their own and everyone else’s. The key word here is achieve. Plenty of people are motivated by external factors such as such as a big salary or the status that comes from having an impressive title or being part of a prestigious company. By contrast, those with leadership potential are motivated by a deeply embedded desire to achieve for the sake of achievement.
Daniel Goleman

Fat, drunk, and stupid is no way to go through life, son.
Animal House

Reason is the main resource of man in his struggle for survival.
Ludwig Von Mises

What feels good is often the wrong thing to do.
William Eckhardt

Human being never think for themselves, they find it too uncomfortable. For the most part, members of our species simply repeat waht they are told – and become upset if they are exposed to any different view. The characteristic human trait is not awareness but conformity… Other animals fight for territory or food; but, uniquely in the animal kingdom, human beings fight for their ‘beliefs’… The reason is that beliefs guide behavior, which has evolutionary importance among human beings. But at a time when our behavior may well lead us to extinction, I see no reason to assume we have any awareness at all.  We are stubborn, self-destructive conformists. Any other view of our species is just a self congratulatory delusion.
Michael Crichton

Having an education is one thing, being educated is another.
Lee Kuan Yew
Former Prime Minister of Singapore

Never call your intuition. It calls you.
Jason Russell

To be uncertain is to be uncomfortable, but to be certain is to be ridiculous.
Chinese Proverb

From error to error, one discovers the entire truth.
Sigmund Freud

I have no special talents, I am only passionately curious.
Albert Einstein

We want to buy stocks to hold forever.
Warren Buffett

If you want a guarantee, buy a toaster.
Clint Eastwood

We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.

No human investigation can be called real science if it cannot be demonstrated mathematically.
Leonardo da Vinci

Never let fear of striking out get in your way.
Babe Ruth

If you don’t risk anything, then your risk even more.
Erica Jong

Life shrinks or expands in proportion to one’s courage.
Anais Nin

Most battles are won before they are ever fought.
General George S. Patton

Luck is a dividend of sweat. The more you sweat, the luckier you get.
Ray Kroc
Founder of McDonalds

The search for truth is more precious than its possession.
Albert Einstein

When the facts change, I change my mind.  What do you do sir?
John Maynard Keynes

I looked at myself as an athlete or a boxer in training who had to sacrifice many other things for the sake of success.
George Soros

There are 60,000 economists in the US, many of them employed full-time trying to forecast recessions and interest rates, and if they could do it successfully twice in a row, they’d all be millionaires by now. Last time I checked they were all still working.
Peter Lynch

Remember this principle when something threatens to cause you pain: the thing itself was no misfortune at all; to endure it and prevail is good fortune.
Marcus Aurelius


Finance Quotations – 01

January 22nd, 2009

Finance Quotations – 01

Famous Finance, Business, Trading, and Investing Quotations

The stock market is an animal of terrible beauty.  Watching it work is like glimpsing an owl swoop down and grab a mouse in its claws or watching a shark hone in on its prey.  Its motions are efficient, and its dead eyes convey no emotion.
Robert Pretcher
The Elliot Wave Theorist, January 2009

For a dozen years, from 1995 – 2007, a vicious bear, disguised as a siren, whistled and sang to its future victims, drawing them into its den.  It is still whistling and singing, but only when it has time to breathe between bites of feasting.
Robert Pretcher
The Elliot Wave Theorist, January 2009

It is not ours to be bullish or bearish, but to be right.
Jesse Livermore

Markets Can Remain Illogical Far Longer Than You Or I Can Remain Solvent.
John Maynard Keynes

No good decision was ever made in a swivel chair.
General George S. Patton, Jr.

A prudent investor’s best safeguard against risk is not retreat, but diversification. True diversification is difficult to achieve by spreading an investment among different stocks, or different equity managers, or even by mixing stocks and bonds, because the two are not complementary.
David Harding

Men wanted for hazardous Journey. Small wages. Bitter cold. Long months of complete darkness. Constant danger. Safe return doubtful. Honor and recognition in case of success.
The Time, London, 1913
Recruitment ad for Shackleton’s Antarctic Expedition

When it is a question of money, everyone is the same religion.

Education rears disciples, imitators, and routinists, not pioneers of new ideas and creative geniuses. The schools are not nurseries of progress and improvement, but conservatories of tradition and unvarying modes of thought.
Ludvig von Mises

The important thing in science is not so much to obtain new facts as to discover new ways of thinking about them.
Sir William Bragg

Fish see the bait, but not the hook; men see the profit, but not the peril.
Chinese Proverb

If you think education is expensive, try ignorance.
Derek Bok

The perfect speculator must know when to get in; more important he must know when to stay out; and most important he must know when to get out once he’s in.

It is not the strongest of the species that survive, nor the most intelligent, but the ones most responsive to change.
Charles Darwin

The trend is your friend except at the end when it bends.
Ed Seykota

The four most expensive words in the English language are “this time its different.”
Sir John Templeton

Price makes news, not the other way around. A market is going to go where a market is going to go.
Peter Borish

Be less curious about people and more curious about ideas.
Marie Curie

I began to realize that the big money must necessarily be in the big swing.
Jesse Livermore

Most of us don’t have the discipline to stay focused on a single goal for five, ten, or twenty years, giving up everything to bring it off, but that’s what’s necessary to become an Olympic champion, a world class surgeon, or a Kirov ballerina. Even then, of course, it may be all in vain. You may make a single mistake that wipes out all the work. It may ruin the sweet, lovable self you were at seventeen. That old adage is true: You can do anything in life, you just can’t do everything. That’s what Bacon meant when he said a wife and children were hostages to fortune. If you put them first, you probably won’t run the three-and-a-half-minute-mile, make your first $10 million, write the great American novel, or go around the world on a motorcycle. Such goals take complete dedication.”
Jim Rogers

Whenever you can, count.
Sir Francis Galton

The beginning is the most important part of the work.

Life is a school of probability.
Walter Bagehot

Everything flows.

I always know what’s happening on the court. I see a situation occur, and I respond.
Larry Bird

The difference between a successful person and others is not a lack of strength, not a lack of knowledge, but rather a lack of will.
Vince Lombardi

Measure what is measurable and make measurable what is not so.
Galileo Galilei

I think the only cardinal evil on earth is that of placing your prime concern within other men. I’ve always demanded a certain quality in the people I liked. I’ve always recognized it at once – and its the only quality I respect in men. I chose my friends by that. Now I know what it is. A self-sufficient ego. Nothing else matters.
Ayn Rand

Losing an illusion makes you wiser than finding a truth.
Ludwig Borne

Managing a hedge fund requires single-minded devotion.
George Soros

A man’s reach should exceed his grasp.
Robert Browning