The Traders Journal

Four Timeless Investing Principles

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I’ve spent many years of digging into my own trading journal, looking for lessons, rules, principles and insights to improve my investing.  I continue to do so, not just to find fodder for this blog but to provide supporting documentation to lend more weight to the teachings of other significant investment writers.  Such is the case this week.  

In a recent letter to clients, Vanguard CEO, F. William NcNabb III,  wrote about how much has changed in the investment arena since Vanguard was founded in 1975.  He explained that, despite all the changes, there remain four timeless principles that continue to offer investors the best chance for success.  Interestingly, I have written a number of blogs on precisely these points.  As McNabb notes, the roots of these four principles go back many decades and are startling in their simplicity.


  1. “Goals:  Create clear and appropriate goals in your investing.”
    http://stockcharts.com/articles/journal/2014/08/how-i-get-re-energized-as-an-investor.html
  2. “Balance:  Develop a suitable asset allocation using broadly diversified funds.”
    http://stockcharts.com/articles/journal/2015/01/my-methodology-allocation-beats-asset-allocation.html
  3. “Cost:   Minimize cost.”
    http://stockcharts.com/articles/journal/2015/04/my-methodology-allocation-beats-asset-allocation-part-iii--eternal-vigilance-is-the-price-of-profits.html
  4. “Discipline.  Maintain perspective and a long-term discipline.”
    http://stockcharts.com/articles/journal/2012/10/stock-market-mastery-part-iii-the-equation.html

Mr. McNabb is not telling investors something most of us don’t already know.  What he’s doing is reminding us of the fundamentals which every good sports coach constantly does with his own team. To liberally paraphrase a famous Winston Churchill quote: “I contend that an investor who expects prosperity but forgets the fundamentals is like a man standing in a bucket and trying to lift himself up by the handle.”

Trade well; trade with discipline!
-- Gatis Roze  

P.S. Click HERE for information on my future appearances & seminars.
October 17th, 2015- ASSET ALLOCATION WORKSHOP with Gatis Roze & Chip Anderson.

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Gatis Roze
About the authors: , CMT, holds an MBA from the Stanford Graduate School of Business and is a past president of the Technical Securities Analysts Association (TSAA). He is also the co-author of Tensile Trading: The 10 Essential Stages of Stock Market Mastery (Wiley, 2016). A full-time investor for over 25 years, Gatis has taught sold-out investment courses throughout the Pacific Northwest and beyond since 2000. Learn More

Grayson Roze
is the author of Trading for Dummies (Wiley, 2017) and Tensile Trading: The 10 Essential Stages of Stock Market Mastery (Wiley, 2016). He has worked in the financial services industry for StockCharts.com since 2012, and now serves as the Business Manager for the company. He holds a Bachelor's degree from Swarthmore College. Learn More
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Excellent points and thoughts ! We all probably need to read once a month. Will being sending these to my clients to read. Thanks , William Evans
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