TheHappyQuant is the work of myself, Andy, and my beautiful, wonderfully supportive wife Michelle.
I traded part-time, during a long satisfying career in engineering and management. After witnessing (and managing) the turmoil of several mergers and acquisitions, I one day found myself part of the “non-surviving management team.” (That is, I was laid off.)
I settled into an early retirement. Actual, bona fide retirement. It was glorious.
But, during the first years of retirement, I did something a bit reckless – I entrusted most all my assets with a single advisor. It didn’t go well. In fact, it went horribly. Maybe I should use bold all caps, because it really did go HORRIBLY.
After a lot of reflection, I went back to trading. I found trading full-time, with the pressure of actually needing to live off of my profits, to be completely different than trading part-time. The thought of part-time trading, now, seems almost recreational to me, at least when contrasted with the amount of stress inherent with trading for a living. Trading full-time, I’ve made a lot of silly mistakes – some were technical and execution errors, but most mistakes were borne of not managing my emotions. I learned a lot about what it takes to trade unemotionally, in an environment which tugs at seemingly every emotional trigger a human being has.
Life went on, and the trading was successful, although returns were very erratic. Erratic returns – another aspect of trading which requires nerves of steel, and complete understanding of how basic human nature and emotions will undermine a trader’s success.
And then, to be completely frank – family medical issues. Like so many families, we went through the Cancer Journey, as it’s called. All is well now, please don’t worry. But living through a multi-year experience like that, with periods of touch-and-go, periods of dark desperation, and periods of renewal and rebirth, is trans-formative. All of us came out the experience changed. As it pertains to trading, our family decided that we wanted to smooth out the earnings, and eliminate reliance on others, which is now an ongoing process. And as it pertained to me personally, I decided I wanted to connect with other human beings, other traders, throughout my workday. I was tired of the solitary sterile life of someone who just watches his trading screens all day, alone.
Life is short. It’s best lived sharing with others, connecting with others, and helping others.
So that is our backstory, and the reasons why TheHappyQuant.com came to be. TheHappyQuant.com is my outlet, to share thoughts about trading and the trading lifestyle.
I post real-time trades, in the hopes that other traders, particularly new traders, can learn from them. And, from time to time, I post research and general musings about living the life of a full time active trader.
I hope to appeal mainly to new and aspiring traders, and to help them along the path toward more success. In my opinion, the main help to be lent has to do with understanding the importance of trading with a thorough grasp of the effect of one’s own emotions on trading outcomes. And, knowing that trading for a living is an incredibly unusual thing, it’s clear that many newcomers just simply won’t survive in the environment. For those folks, I hope to either convince them never to risk their hard-earned capital, or at least consider taking baby steps, ramping up their trading very very slowly.
If you’re interested, feel free to connect with me at LinkedIn <Here.>
And, finally, I know you’re wondering “What’s up with the name, TheHappyQuant?” Well, it sounded cool, and it wasn’t taken, for one thing. But I also like having a domain name that reminds everyone in the trading world that there’s more to life than stoically grinding out a bunch of trades. In both trading, and in life, we’ll all achieve so much more if we understand the importance of being happy.
Please, enjoy the blog!