Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Chess and the Stock Market

This blogger has learned to apply chess principals to investing in the stock market.
Of all of the lessons I learned over the board, one saying has consistently resonated with me. I'm sorry that I can't remember the author, but I certainly recall the quote: "When you see a good move, sit on your hands and look for a better one." Equated to investing, this does not mean that you should be looking to hit a ten-bagger every time. Nor does it mean that, in times of general uncertainty, you should turtle up like Claude Lemieux under a barrage of Darren McCarty haymakers (anyone who knows what I'm referencing there immediately gets me as a groupie).
Simply put, it means be certain that the move you make is the right move. It may in fact be the wrong move, or a neutral move. But what you can not do is compromise and select a move for the sake of doing something and hope that it works out. In some ways investing is more forgiving than chess. At the highest levels, chess games are lost by the slimmest of margins. You may get only one opportunity, if that, to claim a victory at the master level. On the other hand, even a misplaced pawn can bring about a swift, catastrophic demise. With investing, you may miss one opportunity. But another will come along at some point.

Referring to his quote about finding a better move, I believe it was Emanuel Lasker who coined the term.

source: How 64 Squares Have Helped Me
image source: chessformoney.com

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