There is so much to talk about when reflecting on the bullshit that was 2011. For me, it was incredibly hard to make “high percentage” trades. It was a year that surprised me, as the unexpected and surreal replaced the normal, easy trades. Without a doubt, if you weren’t nimble, you lost a tremendous amount of money.
Because of the extreme volatility, I suspended my options account, since it proved to be an exercise in futility. The very essence of momentum was disrespected over and over again by rumors and rumors of rumors, purported by viagra addled bureaucrats dressed in ugly suits–hellbent on interfering in capital markets.
Following one monster year after another, from 2005-2010, I will be lucky to close out 2011 with a +10% gain. However, if there is one thing I did exceedingly well this year it was controlling losses. I’ve had my MOTR boats and unlucky endeavors in VXX and certain nefarious dealings with Chinese burritos. But my yearly range has remained tight, between -5% to +15%. At the very depth of 2011, I was off by just 8%. I held the course and successfully navigated my way back to profitability. But the cost was great, purely from a quality of life point of view.
Like many of you, the volatility emanating out of Europe has led to constant uneasiness, sleepless nights, vacations that entailed 10 hour work days, and a perpetual state of mania that has resulted in numerous trading mishaps. There has been no clear direction or thesis to fall back on. A few months ago I endeavored to park cash in food stocks and laid the ground work for capital infusions into 10 companies. Luckily I never mustered up the confidence to invest because two of those stocks were TEA and DMND, both horrendous losers.
Once again, we had to deal with the typical Wall Street corruption that we’ve all grown to expect and love, which of course goes entirely unpunished. Jon Corzine and his fucking beard lost a bunch of money, fucking MF Global and its clients. As usual, Congress will call hearings and promise to “investigate.” But they will never prosecute “one of their own.”
We learned that our beloved elected officials have been profiting from insider trading, which is legal for them. This is the Roman Senate and no one seems to give a shit. There is one group of degenerate animals who got mad in 2011 and that was the Occupy Wall Street crowd. But what was their demand? These filthy idiots want us to give the corrupt government even more power. Ha! In other words, they feel the way to help America is to give more money to the cocksuckers who conduct themselves with the most undistinguished dishonor the American people have ever seen, the same people who gladly sellout the American worker and expedite the greatest transfer of wealth, from west to east, the world has ever seen. They want to do this by taking my money and literally giving it to union chiefs who in turn will make political donations to the democratic party. No thank you and fuck you very much.
This was also the year the proverbial chickens came home to roost. All of the excess and waste that led to giant European debt loads was firmly rejected in the debt markets this year. As a result, the continent teeters on financial disaster. I suspect, the chickens will die in 2012, leading to a finale of sorts, a conclusion if you will, to the drama we see playing out here on a daily basis.
There are days when I question whether I want to be in this business. In so many ways, I don’t need this shit. But I love it and would not know what to do with myself without it. The truth is, as many of you know, it’s real easy to hate something when you suck at it. Well, by my standards, in 2011, I sucked. For all of the research and long hours that I dedicate to this trade, I expect to outperform by grotesque proportions. All of my big thesis trades flopped, with exception to one sweet run in the refiners.
I can’t keep dodging bullets like this– because eventually one is going to hit me between the eyes.
Here I am at 11pm, penning this article, worrying about Italian 10 year yields, reflecting on my failures. I have a great book waiting to be read in the bedroom and a hot cup of Earl Grey tea right next to it. In many respects, I’ve made my bed already. Now I’m gonna go lie in it.
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