Daily Speculations

The Web Site of Victor Niederhoffer and Laurel Kenner

Dedicated to the scientific method, free markets, ballyhoo deflation, value creation, and laughter. A forum for us to use our meager abilities to make the world of specinvestments a better place.



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Department of Reader Complaints

Usually one doesn't comment on these, especially when one's forecasts according to an objective unsolicited evaluation over the past 6 months, have a t of 3 and have not been entirely reducing one's own overplus during this time either. But one can't help but thank all those who find us as easy to beat here here as many found it in various athletic contests one participated in many hundreds of years ago especially because it brings back one of our more pleasant memories. One had the pleasure some 10 years ago of making the acquaintance of a financial writer who one considered the most poetic and creative , indeed the best financial journalist of that era. On occasion, one would collaborate with her on something that elicited reader vitriol, disbelief or acerbic humour. It was one's wont on these occasions to transmit these to her with a big smile on one's face. "Mmiss x, look at this beauty". ...."Victor, only you would think that's funny ".
--Victor Niederhoffer



From:         David Hipkins
Sent:           March 16, 2005

Subject: your ultimate stupidity.

Dear Vic

i read yr. site avidly. it provokes contradictory responses in me; there is much to be praised (mainly spirit rather than insight) ultimately however i have doubts as to yr integrity/authenticity as a speculator the pseudo-intellectual stuff is pretty childish and you should know enough about markets to refrain from yr sporadic references to ' chair seen cane investing': why should this be of interest to people who have the remotest affinity with the markets?

i could write an indefinite critique of the site but why bother?

there is intractable delusion in what you and yr contributors produce, the tragic semblance of objectivity..

as a human interest story however you rank highly; i was deeply moved many yrs ago by Education of Spec.

i feel a pang of mean-spiritedness as i write in this tone

you are too captive to yr own ideas which no doubt impede performance..

ultimately you may be an infantile narcissist, but perhaps this is unavoidable..

i trade for a living; my survival instincts are ferocious but much of yr stuff is banal, naive,grandiose and self-congratulatory: the question must be who cares re. yr navel-gazing abstrusive disquisitions?

you may have some brilliance but criticism would do you more good than the sycophantic chorus who spout variations on yr credo.

best of luck

if ever i find myself in US i may seek you out for a coffee! excuse my pathetic little rant


EXCUSED. -- Webmistress

From:         Anon.
Sent:           March 16, 2005

You have the gumption to talk about cons, and in partiuclar hedge funds who ring up big returns with small money before blowing everything out when they get the big money!!! Personally, I think your insane, but I gotta say, you sure got stones you freak.

One finds when the readers become particularly hateful, that something big about to happen. -- Vic

From:         B.G.
Sent:           July 15, 2004

Let us know when you are bearish so we can start buying the market. Your theories on trading the market can be used to trade successfully but only in certain market conditions, essentially where there is no real trend. Consider this tool for realizing when the market is a Niederhoffer market. Take 3 short term moving averages; A 5 bar exponential offset 3 bars forward, a 9 bar exponential offset 5 forward and a 17 bar offset 6 bars forward should be fine, you can play with these numbers but the important thing is that you have a short term, mid term and longer term moving averages. When the 3 moving averages are intertwined, you have no trend, and therefore a Niederhoffer market. When the short term is above the mid and above the long, the trend is up, when the inverse, the trend is down. Of course one could argue, how does one know that the trend will not end(start) as soon as the position is taken, after all, moving averages are lagging indicators. That is why we use short term moving averages, but even so, we can only take so much randomness out of the market, we can never take it all out.

On inside days. How about some more data? One should probably observe the volume on these inside in relationship to the day(s) before and perhaps after. Perhaps on inside days where volume is less then the previous day(s) the bulls and the bears are unsure in their stance on the market. On high volume days, the bulls and the bears are in the process of changing their outlooks on the market(bulls going bearish and bears going bullish) which leads to a counteracting effect thus the inside day.

From: James Fink
Sent:  July 12, 2004
Subject: Stuborn Old Geezer

You are one stubborn old geezer. No wonder you lost all of your clients' money. A good trader does not get married to his position or his view of the market. A good trader does not predict; he reacts. You have been bullish since the S&P 500 was at 1130 and you are losing more money day by day as the market continues to fall. Sorry old man, your best days in the market are long past.

From our days as writers we were accustomed to receiving much hate mail whenever we dared to frame optimistic predictions or studies, circa sp 850 -1000-ish. Doubtless those who predicted Dow 500 and limned the causes of the current and future crashes found a more responsive chord than we did. Witness the total lack of attention to our book "Practical Speculation" (John Wiley & Sons, March 2003) calling for a spectacular bull market and holding up the pessimists as mumboists of the highest order. Same for our columns, which were overwhelmed and buried and much more favorably reviewed and read by the marqueeists and doomsdayers and  abelkeechsonians on our former site. But for the first time in ages, right here on DailySpeculations, out of the clear blue sky, the pessimists are finding us loathsome again, and we hasten to publish their so far mild chastisements. -- Victor Niederhoffer

Sent:          Wednesday, June 30, 2004
Subject:     Your Verbage (sic)

I have a simple request. SPEAK PLAIN ENGLISH!! Who are you speaking to
or about when you write such things as your prediction today. Are we all
supposed to be in the know on all things that capture your interest.
You seem to try to be eloquent to the point of complete abstraction. We
all know you are educated for gods sake. Come down to earth with us mere

Victor and Laurel reply:

The offending prediction was apparently this one: 

"Hope springs eternal from the long side until dashed by a somber old hearted fake Dr., whose activities will, however, find reverence in France and Germany and the always respectful Orient."

The reader's complaint brings to mind one of our favorite passages in our favorite book, Atlas Shrugged. One of the heroes, Hank Rearden, has just promised to give $10,000 to his moocher brother Philip, who is raising funds for a group called The Friends of Global Progress. Philip then asks Hank if he would mind making the donation in cash: "You see, Friends of Global Progress are a very progressive group and they have always maintained that you represent the blackest element of social retrogression in the country, so it would embarrass us, you know, to have your name on our list of contributors."

Rearden just sighed and agreed. We, however, cannot refrain from pointing out that the passage the reader complains of would be clear to any blue-collar worker or junior high-school graduate who had invested the time and the $20.37 to buy and read our book, Practical Speculation, in which we break the curious story of how the authoritarian bureaucrat Alan Greenspan obtained his PhD. And we might have passed over even that -- but what can we say to someone who expects not only that we give out free predictions but that we should entirely shoulder the burden of thinking, Astaghfirulla* for our saying so.

The same batch of mail brought in a note from someone who said he hadn't bought our book yet, but would we kindly test the Turtle trading system, available for free download, to see if it still makes money; and from a reader who queried us as to the meaning of abelprecfleckeechian -- a word we used in our June 29 prediction that would, again, be understandable to PracSpec readers.

We are here, of course, only to serve.

*May Allah forgive us!

Department of Reader Complaints

"Very, very bad call," admonishes "Daily Spec" reader B. Rennias, referring to our June 12, 2003, of "Adventure Capitalist" by Jim Rogers, in which we wrote that we did not share Rogers's long-time bullishness on commodities. "Post-World War II inflation-adjusted returns on stocks and commodities indicate a long-term downward drift in commodities prices, and an upward drift in stocks," we wrote. 

Mr. Rennias inquires if we are still bearish. We can only shrug the shoulders and point to our posts of the last couple of days.


"Very, very bad call," admonishes "Daily Spec" reader B. Rennias, referring to our June 12, 2003, of "Adventure Capitalist" by Jim Rogers, in which we wrote that we did not share Rogers's long-time bullishness on commodities. "Post-World War II inflation-adjusted returns on stocks and commodities indicate a long-term downward drift in commodities prices, and an upward drift in stocks," we wrote. 

Mr. Rennias inquires if we are still bearish. We can only shrug the shoulders and point to our posts of the last couple of days.

From:         James Fink
Sent:           Sunday, February 22, 2004
Subject:      Bad Call

I am surprised and disappointed that you are predicting a positive week ahead given the historical precedent that suggests the exact opposite. 

Based on S&P 500 data from 1986 to 2003, there is a strong seasonal pattern apparent after the Friday of February expiration. For the past 19 years, on average, prices have tended to bottom on the fourth trading day after February expiration. For this year, that fourth trading day would equate to Thursday, Feb. 26.


You claim to be a counter, well you failed to count this!

Jim Fink

Vic replies: I am afraid that I am very fallible. and one of my fallibilities is that I think all seasonal stuff mumbo. Good luck.

Note from the Webmeistress: In the event, the market rose 0.1% for the week.