“Anyone can be complicated. Simplicity? That’s hard.” (British docudrama, The Great Train Robbery (2013))

I’m watching a random Netflix find, The Great Train Robbery (2013), a docudrama released 50 years after a August 8, 1963 notorious train robbery in Britain. A young brilliant thief, is given a tip to a train shipment of used currency. In traders’ parlance, this might be the equivalent also of a “tip” but now how to take advantage of it? That comes down to developing a procedure to make the most of this advantage. The younger thief recruits the assistance of another group of thieves with some experience. Then, the two heads of these “firms”, a/k/a gangs, collaborate during the planning stage of a train robbery, promising 1 million British Pounds (it’s 1963 remember, so that amount was even larger in comparison to 2013 Pounds). An older robber shows the young genius how he changes a train traffic light, with a battery to turn on one light, to slow the train, but then shows how to turn off a green “go” light, with a simple black glove. After the younger robber expresses his incredulity with the comment that anyone could have thought of this solution, the older robber responds, “Anyone can be complicated. Simplicity? That’s hard.”

Trading is something which can benefit from simplicity, and that is the “edge” which traders can employ to their advantage. Imagine being able to do something over and over, without wrestling with a mental cloud of conflicts and the distractions of biases and prejudices? Trading can be reduced to a process that is SIMPLE and straightforward, albeit still difficult or challenging for a variety of reasons. If there’s a system adhered to with proper planning, practice, discipline, and the will to succeed, then perhaps more than a million “quid” could be “nicked” from the markets.

In my case, the edge is provided by a focus on price.


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