Harvard MBA Critical? No.
“Enron and Barings are timeless trades. The scandals of the future will change, but how to win the mistakes (zero-sum) of others while others are hopelessly searching for bargains (losers average losers) will never change. Trend following is built for change.”
A top CEO recently spoke before a Harvard MBA class. After his presentation the students asked questions. One of the questions was, What must we do? The CEO replied, Take the rest of the money you have not spent on tuition and do something else. The point was clear: formal education means less and less in today’s world.
Trading is no different. The best traders are usually not the products of formal education. Even if some top traders have advanced degrees they seldom credit school with their success. Does this mean people with advanced degrees must not trade trend following methods? Of course not, but reliance on a higher degree for success is not a wise strategy.
Think about formal education for a moment. Most academic institutions teach you to become an employee, not to make money. And since so many professions don’t pay well, you can’t always count on your profession to be your best source of making money.
Bottom line: you don’t have to be a Ph.D. or MBA to trade. You only need to have the desire to work hard and learn. If you must have a Ph.D make it a “Poor, Hungry and Driven” degree instead.
Schwager & Eckhardt on Education
“As I understand it, the catalyst for the Turtle training program was a disagreement between you and Richard Dennis as to whether successful trading could be taught.”
“Yes. I took the point of view that it simply could not be taught. I argued that just because we could do it didn’t necessarily mean that we could teach it. I assumed that a trader added something that could not be encapsulated in a mechanical program. I was proven wrong. The Turtles program proved to be an outstanding success. By and large, they learned to trade exceedingly well. The answer to the question has to be an unqualified yes.”
“If trading can be taught, can it be taught to anyone with reasonable intelligence?”
“Anyone with average intelligence can learn to trade. This is not rocket science.”
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