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Client sues over lost stock certificate,

September 12, 2014

Client sues over lost stock certificate is a story in the Financial Post (FP2) from Wednesday, September 10, 2014, Written by Barry Critchley (FP2). A client’s $780,000.00 worth of stocks were escheated to the State of Delaware and lost in the shuffle. I am mentioning it in my blog to warn my readers to stay vigilant because it almost happened to me with my Disney stocks Direct, 1) Don’t buy your stocks in the form of stock certificates that may be “lost” when your company is being bought by another company. The incentive of people involved in the process of company restructuring to protect your assesses is reduced in the shuffle because of reduced supervision, 2) Don’t buy shares and let them “sleep” there in a semi-dormant account. Shares are like bills on “money tree,” the tree dies if you don’t fertilize and water it with attention. I bought Disney shares direct and left them dormant to grow for 3 years. I received a letter from Delaware informing me that my shares will be escheated to the State of Delaware within a few days if I don’t show share activity (the whole idea is probably unconstitutional). I immediately sold all my shares in Disney direct (it’s their loss for not fighting this unethical and unfair law against busy investors who “forget” for a while to buy or sell shares in an account.

Psychology in action: The Twitter frenzy continues.

September 11, 2014

To me as a psychologist-investor Twitter is a starving bird that continue to change advertizing tunes with the hope that investors continue to feed it. They do. Why? System 1 heuristic expectation is reigning, not the calculated expectation of System 2. For that you need to know how to plug Kahneman’s System 2 into the advertizing grid. (I hope that financial gamblers will now hit Google and type “Kahneman, System 2.”)

If you are intent on making big money in the market (not just think you do), checkout my other postings on decision-making. System 2 thinking selects for analysis only data (variables) that increase the probability of predicting an outcome (repeat this sentence untill you get it cold turkey!). Let’s use Twitter data as an example of decision-making that works about stocks, not a decision-making that raises psychological expectation about stocks going up! One day Twitter will stop singing alluring tunes and start laying golden eggs, but not now. Today,  Twitter only plays on your false expectation by making “good-looking” changes.

For the next paragraph I will refer to my book The Psychology of Investing: how to play the game and win.” At Price/Earning (P/E) of 506 Twitter is at market exuberance without substance (p 26). A share price hundreds of times higher than earning is a bad fire (Page 137). Twitter’s PEG score is 4.54, too high. A predicted high PEG score has an inflated G (Page 137).  Twitter’s G at 111% per year is 10 times higher than the Standard & poor G and 6 times higher than the G of Social Media!  Topping all this dismal data with a dismal earning of only 1 or 2 cents per quarter (as compared to Facebook’s 40 cents per quarter!) and System 2 says, don’t put your money on a deer’s horn!  

Maligning Steven Jobs.

August 14, 2014

The issue the federal judge had to decide was: Did Steven Jobs when he was the CEO of Apple had the legal right to add a condition in his hiring contract with new employees that basically stated: Being employed by Apple you will acquire the secrets of Apple technology that other companies may try to buy or get by other means from you. Do you agree under oath not to sell, give away or use yourself in forming a future company any of the secrets of Apple technology that you had learned about while employed by Apple?

The Federal judge decided that Steven Jobs had no legal grounds to restrict his employees when they move on to other companies or form their own company from selling or using Apple secrets. What is your judgment? I think the judge was wrong. He should have declared a 30 year statue of limitation on Apple secrets unless the parties signed a different agreement that superceded the 30 years statue of limitation. I am a psychologist and I hate to think that I am smarter than attorneys. What do you think?

The financing of air disasters.

July 18, 2014

Any psychologist who is not too clinical will tell you that behavior is regulated by its consequences. If you buy a car and insure the driver and his passengers for $100 million in case there is an accidental death, you are manipulating the driver’s awareness threshold. You are invariably increasing his unconscious probability negligent driving behavioral that may end with such a fatal accident.

When the Malaysian airplane Boeing 777 flight 370 disappeared without a trace (probably a suicide 90 degrees smooth deep diving plunge that leaves no trace for years) the insurance co. paid the airline company much more money than the financial worth of the plane (air disasters are good investment). Considering that the airline in required by law to pay only a small amount of that money to the relatives of the dead passengers, the “blood profit” for the airline company remains a Hugh amount. Behavior is regulated by its consequences. Please don’t be stupidly sentimental about it, the human unconscious is very old and cold. Behavior will be regulated by the unconscious mind regardless of the pain and misery to people. Think, if you are a woman driver in love and you say to your friend for a year now, “I am dying to meet that handsome paramedic,” you are increasing the probability of a fatal car accident. My friend who started a new business a year ago repeated, “I may lose my business if I am not careful.” He did. Freud said about the unconscious, “This beast in the cellar of life is 4 times stronger than conscious awareness!

Another Malaysian airplane just crashed with 290 passengers dead! Please don’t go into all kinds of logical, mundane explanations.  Remember, these are human lives at take, not just your relationships, personal health or business. Hey, you want to be really smart, review all your behaviors and their consequences for a month. Don’t be stupid enough to challenge reality. Don’t expect good consequences from bad behavior, don’t expect bad consequences from good behavior, expect bad consequences from bad behavior and expect good consequences from good behavior. The mind hates this “stuff” so be careful when you decide what is good or bad behavior for you. Making rewarding decisions in life is the name of the game!

If you like my blogs, tell a friend. I want to spread safety and financial success for all.

What’s common to a CEO of a company and a football coach in the world cup in Brazil.

June 30, 2014

I post this psychological comparison between a CEO of a company in Wall Street and a football coach of a team playing in the world cup in Brazil for the purpose of alerting a diamond in the rough coach to excellence. I will describe both in my peaceful revolution blog on how to relate to people ( and in my psychology of investing blog on how to make money ( In my presentation at UCLA in 2011 on behavioral economics I stated that the behavior and personality of a CEO of a company trading on Wall Street is always the major variable in its distribution of share prices. If you want big returns you buy shares in great CEO’s like Jobs, Page, Brim, Besos, Zuckerberg and so on. If you want big wins in sports you hire great coaches like john Wooden. Great coaches and great CEO’s are rare!

I think that most of you believe that to relate well to people, make a lot of money and win games in sport is not that simple or easy to do. Well, I got psychological news for you, not only it is simple and easy to do but the world cup in Brazil shows that my CEO theory applies also to Coaches in Sports. Investors underestimate the importance of a CEO to their earnings and countries and team managers underestimate the importance of a Coach to the national team’s winning games. For example, today, the Netherland with skilled players almost lost to Mexico with passionate players. Both have average coaches that underestimate the importance of focusing on scoring goals, Netherland by spending a lot of time on passing and elegant play and Mexico by spending a lot of energy on running around and playing one-on-one for goal possession. Another good example of average coaches are Costa Rica and Greece. Their coaches emphasize long kicks towards the opponent field but without much success (training). Their long passes from one side of the field to the other were sloppy and hard kicks toward the goal were few and far between.

So far I haven’t seen a great coach in Brazil, may be Costa Rica but I doubt it. A great CEO produces great products and services. A great coach produces goals. Where are they? Agreat coach emphasizes team spirit and the following exercises in practice training: Practice successful penalty kicks toward the opponent goal frame untill all 11 players can do it well and at least 4 can do it focused 9 out of 10 times. Successful kicks that hit the corner net from 30-40 matters at least 50% of the tries. Pinpoint kicks from difference players and distances in the field. Practice perfect corners kicks to the goal area until you are blue in the face so important that practice is. And add great skill head kicks. Long arched kicks that change the focus of the game from front and back and left and right. Long, medium but not short quick sharp passes from player to player. Coordinated attack plan on the goal from 2 well-trained forward players who practiced the attack plan to the hilt. A great coach is in command of his teamwork and trains players in behaviors on the field and in a classroom until they are good. Such a coach knows how to teach his players how to convert their anger at an opponent’s behavior into goals. The key to a great coach is how he sets up the training sessions in behaviors, what he makes his team members practice throughout the year. He is a designer of victories! I would like to predict that Brazil will win the world cup in 2014 because it is good and a host country but I don’t know their coach and there are 4 additional variables in the world cup play of about 10% value each besides the 60% coaching that determine victory.

I am not a sports psychologist but I am a behavioral psychologist and soccer is a behavior. I watched European football since childhood. A great foot ball coach at the world cup tournament at the caliber of a great CEO like Steven Jobs should train his players to perform key behaviors 100%. They should practice to pinpoint corner kicks to focus on the best area for a goal. A great coach trains his players to avoid kicking balls back as a strategy, double their awareness and kick the ball to a team player in the open in a strategic position, keep a forward twins (trained together) always ahead and ready to kick to each other and to the goal, learn to pin point long kicks, keep records of each player’s total mileage and average speed on the field, pace the game fast with periods of play rests, practice a lot to aim the kick better (especially avoiding a kick above the opponent’s net, avoid penalty kicks above the goal bar, avoid one-on-one struggle for possession of a ball unless you have perfect skill and control of the ball (10% of players), practice receiving the ball and kicking it in fast from the air, repeat the sentence, “kick the ball into the net fast, scoring goals is the only purpose of the world cup, and accepting money as bonuses for goals is good.

I know, this is a long list of technical skill things to do to become a great coach. Don’t forget the psychology: Design team uniforms with subliminal messages to score and practice kicking toward the goal line with a big sign W(IN) in appropriated spots near the goal line. Create a team spirit by becoming a leader coach, friend, disciplinarian, father figure, a John Wooden, in short be the one out of ten! Go win games!

Twitter is trying a 280 words post.

June 26, 2014

Twitter changed from a 140 words tweet to a 280 words two-way tweet, an opportunity for investors to predict scientifically whether Twitter is a real company or a kid’s game. Do they have a future or not? Twitter analysts tell us that Twitter is experimenting with a 280 words message. I know the answer is they are not, they may not even know what I am talking about, but my question may still decide Twitter’s future: Did Costolo and Board randomly selected a control group that was asked to continue to use 140 words per post and an experimental group that was asked to use 280 words per tweet? Did Costolo collect the data for 3 months and published the study in a respectable journal? I doubt that Twitter is doing an experiment. If they are I will change my mind about the future of Twitter’s management.  Daniel Kahneman, the Nobel Price winner in 2002 established that trying to improve your economic outcome by doing what you believe in, using common sense, logic, reasoning and rationality tend to come short of cash in the modern market place. Twitter reasoning that it may become successful by adding 140 words to your post is called a fallacy of rationality in my book on investing. Did they do an experiment? I want to point out to all the investors who are now discussion the value of the 280 words tweet to wait for a scientific pilot study before they invest, especially those of you who are rational: You may analyse the move as a great move. I like someone who knows to tell me what kind of study is Twitter doing before it tells the engineers to design a permanent new 280 words platform? I hope Twitter’s decision is not based on Khaneman’s System 1 logic!

Advertising Will Be an Amazon Jungle.

June 21, 2014

The winning companies will be:

FIND the ONLY AD that COUNTS for more than 5%:  A rare system engineer somewhere  is ready to design a unique advertising platform, really unique in the field. The way it is happening now most companies are not getting it. For example, Yahoo uses a buckshot approach. CEO Mayer recently hired 50 engineers with the hope that one of them or the group will   Read more…


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