The Trading Tribe
Ed Seykota's FAQ
Home | Send Mail to FAQ | Resources | Ground Rules | FAQ Index

Govopoly in the News

Contributors Say Ed Says
Feb 28, 2015

Wants to Trade Short Term

Dear Ed,

My over arching philosophy is to ride the waves of the S&P 500, minimizing draw downs and staying with any short-term trends that present themselves. The approach is fully automated, using a 60-minute bar on the E-Mini S&P 500, an oscillator, and money management techniques. It does not hold overnight, but does start early when the London markets open.

... I do need to build up real-time performance with the current version of my system and this will take time ... it might be attractive in the future if my results are stellar (and consistent) on a risk-adjusted basis.


Thank you for sharing your process.

If you have a fully automatic system, you might consider back testing it now, so you don't have to wait for an indicator of its attractiveness.

You might also consider taking your feelings about <wanting it now> to Tribe.

Wanting it Now

may conflict with

having it now.

Feb 27, 2015

So Close

Good Evening Sir,

I was short May coffee from 157.60 and look where it is now. I am just disgusted as to why I cannot sit on my hands and let trades work for me.

Yes, I made money, but I left thousands on the table. I cannot say Thank you enough for your reply to my e-mail. Thank you for your act of kindness.

I have read numerous books and it seems everyone kind of had a mentor they trained under. Everything I have read about you is incredible. What a journey Mr. Seykota.

I am not getting what I want out of the markets, I am so close,,,,have a great weekend Sir, and Thank you again for your response.

Thank you for sharing your process.

In Tribe, we hold that everyone gets what they want, including claiming they don't.

You might consider taking your feelings about <so close> to Tribe.

Some People Learn

to want the wanting.

Feb 27, 2015

Rocks Without Donors

Hi Ed,

I read the TTP Extensions. I think about the Rocks Process. You write how the Stressor stresses the Rock Donor and Client. The Rock Donor gives a medicinal rock to the Client. Then the process unfolds with fore-giving the Rock Donor and moving to the Heart Rock.

Can you help me understand how the process may differ if there is no Rock Donor to the Client (or the client is the Rock Donor).

A real example: my girlfriend grows up with only her mother and is the oldest of three siblings. There is a lot of anger, verbal abuse, lack of intimacy, etc.

The Stressor is the mum who gives stress to my girlfriend (and in turn to the younger siblings).

My girlfriend however has no Rock Donor and is by default her own Rock Donor. Or perhaps a possibility is the Stressor also being the Rock Donor - can this happen? Does this change the process? Or in this situation does the client fore-give themselves and move straight to the Heart Rock?

Thank you for sharing the process,

Thank you for raising this issue.

To discover the donor, you might consider noticing what form of medicinal behavior your girlfriend exhibits in response to stress, such as shutting down, running away, taking sedatives, engaging other drama, etc.

Let's say she deals with stress by enrolling another person to save her (you.)

A Rock contains a link between an emotion and a response.

Rock: {Stress --> Enroll a savior}

You might consider asking your girlfriend who else in her family uses this strategy in dealing with stress.

Incidentally, the savior generally evolves into the victim in the next round.

Feb 24 2015

Govopoly Models

Hi Ed,

I received the Govopoly in the 39th Day book and finished reading it. VERY INFORMATIVE! Nice job. I tried running some of the Models on your website after installing Java 8 as instructed. However there appears to be a problem with setting the security settings to medium. Java 8 version 20 (and later) only have high or very high options for security. Java 8 version 19 was the last one with the option to set security to medium according to Oracle. So the modeling won't run.

Any suggestions?


Thank you for sending me the heads up.

The latest browsers and versions of Java no longer support Java applets - even ones like the Govopoly models that do not allow text input. This decision addresses security issues with Java.

You can still run the models with previous browsers and versions of Java - although I find this rather impractical.

At this point, I see no easy way to publish interactive models online. Ultimately, I may have to republish the models as videos in which I run most of the experiments.

Feb 24, 2015

Wants to Follow Trends

Good Morning Sir,

can you help me to be a better trend follower please.?

Thank you

Thank you for raising this issue.

I wonder what part of trend following you consider problematic.

Feb 24, 2015

Wants to Trade

Hello Mr. Seykota,

I am a second year Math/Econ student at [university]. I've been writing my own trading systems since I learned JAVA my sophomore year of high school and have read several books regarding trend following, the turtle traders, technical analysis, and systems trading.

I was hoping to get any advice I could from you on what I can do to get exposure to trading as a career. What kind of internships/jobs should I look for or books should I read? I feel that investment banking and wealth management would only expose me to people with opinions and interests that deviate from my own (fundamentalists). Unfortunately I can't just go to my career center and ask how I can trade for a living.

If anything, I hope you know now that I find you inspiring and strictly abide by much of your advice in developing my own trading philosophy and strategy. Thank you very much for your time.


Thank you for raising this issue.

You might consider taking your feelings about <wanting to follow someone else> to Tribe.

Alternatively, you might consider leading your own way.
Feb 24, 2015

1929 Market Crash Song - Video

Hi Ed!

I thought you might like this video....maybe post on your website.

Take care,
Thank you for sending me the link.

For another view of the event, see this series of six videos:

Feb 24, 2015

PR Tribe Report - Spicy - Making The Most of It

Dear Chief,

I have some experiences to report. I have enumerated the second half of the report to help clarify my thinking and keep it concise.

Part 1 - Intimacy uptrend.

Intimacy centric communication with my wife and children is becoming more and more automatic. I find it is becoming my default process in all but the most emotional and stressful situations. Even those stressful situations, it is becoming much easier to remember to initiate intimacy centric relating. I like the results.

Surprisingly it has even "spiced things up". I share how I'm feeling and ask my wife if she would like to do the same. I encourage her to share he feelings and through sharing we feel really close.

I tell her that I miss the physicality of our relationship and that our commitments to our small children have resulted in less physical intimacy than before having babies. I share that I see three facets to our relationship: Partnership in raising our family and in our businesses. Friendship & Camaraderie and Attraction and Physical intimacy. I notice we feel happier, more energetic and more stable when we have real intimacy and connection on all three fronts.

Suddenly the children are really tired and fall asleep early. We find our selves in the throws of a very intense and deeply intimate connection. Spicy details respectfully with​eld.

Part 2 - Nowness drawdown then breakout.

Last week I run my prototype systems in the markets trading a single contract per system signal. I try to do this while on on vacation with my family, while using a virtual machine (PC on a Mac) and new, untested peripheral hardware ( a USB driven monitor). Several things happen:

1. The hardware consistently crashes. I miss automated signals as the software hangs and stalls (entries and exits). The errors are all negative resulting in worse than expected results.

2. I use a newer version of and misconfigure my trading software causing orders to be rejected by the exchanges. As a result I miss signals (entries and exits) and notice I feel very sad and afraid.

"I don't know what's going to happen". I'm baffled because manual entries at the same or nearby prices execute.

3. I overreact and try to "save the system" and make up for the late and erroneous entries​ by adding aggressively to existing positions and taking profits early, afraid that the automation won't work and that I'll be in worse shape than taking an early exit. The net contribution of my frantic and unplanned trading is negative. I feel disconnected and frantic while this happens. I feel regretful and disoriented.

4. The system experiences a typical (but large) drawdown, more than doubled by my technical errors and attempts to compensate for them.

5. I find that my week of vacation has passed and I've more or less been in some other place of future profitability and avoidance. I'm disoriented. I re-engage my family and they seem glad.

6. Although I work on my paper intermittently between our last meeting and when I submit it, I discover it is my intention to be late when I check my email on the plane home and see that I've missed my opportunity to meet my commitment to exchange Trading System Lab papers with my fellow Tribe Members on time. My paper still needs work. I feel like I "blacked out". I wonder how I let this happen. I feel some shame and regret.

7. We get home, I share feelings with my wife about a number of things. My feelings calm down after heating up in a good way.

8. I assess the preceding week. I notice the "blackout" and "regret" behavior.

10. I feel afraid that I don't know what is going to happen. I feel it.

11. I work on my paper. It's still a long way from where I would like it to be but I feel like I'm progressing towards clarity and congruence with myself. I will be able to continue clarifying and reducing scope until it is right.

12. I research the technical errors I experienced automating my systems and find the well documented solutions.

13. I create a "pre-flight check" for the systems that is similar to the ​"pre-flight check" I use when trading discretionarily.

14. Monday, I implement my "pre-flight check" and technical solutions for my automation problem.

15. The systems trade. All 17 trades execute as expected. I experience price improvement and slippage. The net difference is equivalent to about $2 price improvement over my backtest and expected system fills per contract/side traded.

16. The system has one of it's lowest % accuracy days of the year at 17% accuracy vs a more typical 40% accuracy.

17. I notice that the ranges were very small. I also notice that there were opportunities to exit many of the trades at a profit greater than the average profit for trades in each system. I decide to investigate mean reversion and price spike profit taking exits in the context of ​small range and low ADX days. I also make a not to look into what average trade really means so that I can have a better understanding of how my system works and if there is a way to reduce risk or retain profit without ruining profitability.

18 . E.O.D. I am still in drawdown and the systems have had a typical losing day.

19. E.O.D I'm surprised the day feels like a total success despite the net loss. I feel glad and sure that the longer the drawdown and small range environment lasts, the more likely a great trending period will eventually follow.

20. This morning I go for a swim and on my way back to my apartment I have the "I don't know what's going to happen" feeling and I find myself finishing the though out loud with:

"I don't know what's going to happen, and I'm going to make the most of it!" It feels very energizing.

It's been nearly three weeks since our last PR Tribe meeting ​and my hotseat. I relate the difference ​in how I experience "I don't know what's going to happen" to our process.

It is a major improvement.

Thank you.


Thank you for sharing your process.
Feb 24, 2015

Disney Inflation Indicator


The Walt Disney Company for the 27th consecutive year has once again raised the price of a single-day admission ticket to its Magic Kingdom theme park at Walt Disney World.

For the 18th straight year, Disney's annual ticket price increase has far surpassed the latest official rate of U.S. price inflation!

Based on the U.S. government's phony/fake consumer price index (CPI), America's latest official full year price inflation rate is only 0.676%.

From the 1971 grand opening of Disney World through today, Magic Kingdom ticket prices have increased at a compound annual growth rate of 8%, which is double the CPI's compound annual growth rate during this same period of only 4%!

Considering that Magic Kingdom ticket prices have been rising 2X faster than the CPI over the past 45 years, 3X faster than the CPI over the past 5 years, and 9X faster than the CPI over this most recent year - the CPI no longer accounts for the cost of maintaining the same standard of living in America.

The U.S. government has been manipulating how the CPI is calculated - with the goal of reporting artificially low price inflation rates, which allow it to overstate GDP growth while keeping Cost-Of-Living Adjustments far below what is needed to preserve the purchasing power of Social Security benefits.
Thank you for sharing your observations.
Feb 23, 2015

Bombs and Welfare


Which seems worse: bombs or welfare?

Japan has no welfare system.

The Bomb
Hiroshima, August, 1945

The Aftermath, 1945

Hiroshima, Today

Seventy years later.

Detroit, Today

Thank you for sending me the photos that graphically indicate how the Govopoly System assimilates the Free Competition Sector, wipes out the middle class and eventually kills the economy.

Feb 23, 2015

Tribe Report - Getting The Hang of the Rocks Process


After rereading my last report this song comes to mind

"I came up the hard way" by Eddie Clearwater.

Seven members present, one from interstate is absent. I decide to be a bit more low key this week and after asking for homework reports I hand over to #3 to chair the meeting.

Everyone did their homework. One or two have good results from in mainly goal setting. No-one got hot from it though.

Update on my hot seat from last time: I find I am no longer having frequent disturbing flashbacks of the incident. When I do think about it, it seems paler, faded, more distant. A few days after the hot seat, I find my fingernails have grown to the point where I need to file or cut them. After many attempts to stop chewing my nails, which used to help me feel less stressed, I give it up spontaneously.

Member #5

The first person who reports being hot is #5. His girlfriend dumps him a while back by leaving the country and cutting all contact. This follows a 3am argument concerning her accusations about infidelity, looking at other women, watching pr0n etc. He "proves" she is "wrong" then flies into a rage and leaves the apartment and the town for a few days. When he gets back she is gone and he hears nothing from her since. Then he finds out recently she has moved into the apartment block that he lives in. He feels dishonoured, devalued, she owes an explanation. Her presence is a constant nagging reminder of all this.

On freezing the intense feelings in the hot seat, he recalls some argument with his mother in which she dismisses him, doesn't listen, disrespects him. He flies into a rage and goes into his room. He lies on the floor, fists clenched so hard and shaking that he feels he is levitating off the floor.

We reenact this scenario in which his father donates the strategy to "go away" "feel angry" "show the other person they are wrong using logic".

He decides he wants new strategies. We reenact, with HS forgiving the old rock and taking on the new rocks of receive and listen to the other person, ask about their feelings not just their facts, take a few moments to be in the moment and feel the feelings that come up, which gives you time to respond in a more proactive way rather than a knee jerk fashion.

HS likes these new strategies.

On checkout, some discussion that some of this material is old ground, and sometimes there are layers of old rocks and trauma that need to be peeled away. HS realizes for the first time how he creates the situation with his girlfriend leaving him, something he could not see before. And perhaps he chooses her as someone who would play that part well.

Member #3

Feels fear and doesn't like it. Fear wells up out of proportion in response to mundane and not-so-mundane situations. He had some long term concerning health challenges - various medical tests being run from time to time to monitor developments. During hot seat, he recalls losing his school bag and feeling frightened of getting into trouble. His teacher notices something is up, but he doesn't tell anyone the problem. His mother donates the strategy to panic at the slightest cause.

After reenacting this, HS decides he wants new strategies and forgives the old rock.

He decides to allow himself time to feel the feeling of the situation, which will then give him time to process the information and decide how he wants to respond. Most of the situations that come up here don't involve another person directly eg a medical test comes back with an ambiguous result, the tax authorities sent you a nasty letter. He like being real and feeling the feelings for his strategy.

On checkout, a few people comment how the hot seat issue resonates with them and the healing seems to rub off on them too.

I say I feel very happy m#3 has opened up like this.


Likes the company he works for but doesn't like his boss. He and his boss share the work but the boss palms it all onto him (except in peak times) and surfs the internet. He gives the excuse that HS needs to learn the skills.

At the peak of the hot seat, he recalls cleaning his house and his step father always findings something wrong - perhaps he even plants dirt or rubbish so he can complain. He then makes HS do it all again, or kneel on a hard floor for long periods of time. HS's mother donates the strategies of "don't worry about it" "It's not so bad" Similarly at work, HS puts up with a mediocre situation without doing too much about it. He looks for new jobs to some degree, he accepts the personnel departments ruling he much stay in the one job for 2 years before he can transfer to another department.

HS wants a new strategy.

We offer numerous new rocks including the heart rock in various guises. HS decides he prefers the new rock of "setting boundaries" and feels happy with that.

On checkout, we comment on the lack of a heart rock. HS decides to think about this over the next couple of days.


On checkout M#5 comments that since his last meeting we now run a much tighter process with very little amateur psychoanalysis etc.


A couple of members comment that they have trouble "getting" the concept of the rocks process. In a nutshell I see it like this:

1. Identify a feeling you don't like.

2. Ramp it up to levels that you cannot ignore.

3. At the peak moment, allow a previous incident to come into your mind that represents the situation, perhaps the first time it happened.

4. Reenact that incident and associated strategies.

5. Reenact with new proactive strategies.

Step 5 is the key - it reprograms the mind with the new strategies which then become automatic. No effort is required, no willpower. Just willingness to let your old strategies go.

Thank you for sharing your process and for documenting your meeting.

I sense a shift in your implementation of the Rocks Process - away from analysis and control and toward intimacy.

Per #6, you might consider identifying the specific resources in the "Setting Boundaries" Rock. If it merely contains <declare your boundaries> it might might not know how to implement and manage actual boundaries.

The Heart Rock empowers establishing rapport, listening to the other person's feelings and sharing your own feelings. Boundary management seems to follow naturally and automatically from these resources.

Per your steps, you might consider inserting:

4.3 Fore-give the medicinal rock to the Rock Donor.
4.7 Accept and practice using the Heart Rock.

Feb 23, 2015

The Trading Tribe Book - Updates

Hi Ed,

The Trading Tribe book is published in 2005. I work now on implementing the TTP structure for investment management.

I wonder what modifications if any have been made over the years. If there have been any can you tell me what they are or point me in the right direction.

TTP and Govopoly help me direct my life. I feel deep gratitude for your work. I focus on adaptive investing and helping others.

Many thanks,

Thank you for sharing your process and for acknowledging the work.

Trading Tribe Extensions (2014) updates The Trading Tribe, presents the Cartography of the Mind and details the Rocks Process.

You can download it for free (PDF), or purchase a hard copy on-line. See Resources, above.
Feb 23, 2015

Wants to Share

Hi Ed,

I just want to share a book that I find useful for me. It covers some stuff that rings true for me and that I come to you for but hadn't manned up yet to acknowledge. I think it may help others that read your site as well.

I hope to join you for Tribe in the near future.


Thank you for wanting to share.

You might consider sharing your experience of the book - and how you find it useful in your life..

Feb 22, 2015

Stand by Me - Video


Thank you for sending me the link.
Feb 22, 2015

Pushing Through


I have pushed through it and the view is great from the other side.

I appreciate you.
Thank you for sharing your process and your appreciation.
Feb 22, 2015

How Many Balloons to Stop a 44 Mag Bullet - Video


Thank you for sending me the link.

I wonder how many 44 rounds you need to stop a water balloon.

Feb 22, 2015

Wants to Go to Any Length for Risk Control

Dear Sir,

This may sound a little weird to you and quite direct but I know of no other way. I want to request you to please teach me Risk and Money Management in Trading.

I assure you that I would go to any length to learn.

My commitment will be absolute and I am ready.

Thank you for raising this issue.

Risk control has to do with setting limits on the length to which you would go.

While you ponder this, you might consider reading the article on Risk Management at Resources, above.
Feb 21, 2015

New Tribe - with a Female Tribe Leader

Dear Ed,

greetings and gratitude to you!

I have the privilege of being invited to a TTP session with Newbury Tribe in 2014 and I fall in love with the process.

After the second session I have the desire to start a new Tribe closer to home.
Chief [Name] kindly guides me, supports and attends two sessions which I organise in Hertford, and we co-manage the process.

I also get invited to attend a session with the London tribe, and I take the opportunity.
I get to have two TTPs in quick succession, one on Sunday and the second following Thursday.

I share with my Tribe mates by e-mail and [Name] suggest that I ''share the sharing'' with you, so here it comes:

''Friends, good morning

After my first TTP sessions I end up in a blissful place of peace, love and enthusiasm.
I set this expectation of all sessions, but this doesn't happen in my latest sessions.

However, I feel that I'm doing good work and trust the process, so I want to carry on.
(I get my usual ''significant dream'' the second night after the session - same happens with Holotropic Breathwork). I do not analyse too much, I let it be, and trust...

I have an amazing session with the London tribe.
I'm the only female and only non-trader in the group.
There is a different energy, different dynamics, so I learn a lot.
My ''performance'' is the longest and most dramatic, so I feel like ''the odd one out'', but [Name 2] tells me that they also benefit from my presence and my sending, which is nice and reassuring...

I learn to worry less about the rules of process managing and be less ''shy'' with the questions and encouragement (particularly of forms). I can take a risk in managing, I can experiment, as long as the intention is there.

I am not after ''AHAs'' as such, but harmonious integration of my feelings, leading to peace and better functioning, increased ability to enjoy my life. I love this word : harmony :-)

It's lovely, as always, to hear from you. Thank you for sharing, and keeeeep sharing :-)

Have a lovely weekend!

Love and hugs,''

So, I think the Hertford Tribe is born, and I intend to register it very soon.

I read your book and BTW, I love the cover. (I'm fascinated by shamanism).
I also love the fact that a sense of humour is welcome in the process.
It takes me a while to figure out why ''Fred'' and not John or Michael...
It is only when I read about the ''Fredian approach'' in your book that it clicks :-).

I hope this finds you well, and it would be lovely and very special to hear form you.

Best wishes,

Thank you for sharing your process.

I would like to receive reports from your Tribe as you go along - as I would like to learn what, if any, special touches a female Tribe leader might bring to the process.
Feb 21, 2015

PR Tribe Report


Since our last tribe meeting I find myself reflecting on the family dynamics that were brought up.

Early childhood isolation.

Parental abuse.

The venomous use of children in the struggle between parents.

The role of victim and victimizer among siblings.

Thank you for bringing these issues to Tribe and doing the work.

These themes continue to haunt my thoughts and feelings.

Thank you for sharing your process.

In Tribe we aim to fore-give patterns of shutting down and holding it in - and then to reference the Heart Rock to share and receive feelings.

During role playing, the client returns the shut-down rock to the rock donor and gains and learn to use the Heart Rock to share and receive feelings with the other participants in the critical incident.

This gives the client tools with which to address currently abusive situations - and to stop attracting such situations.

Unwillingness to Share Feelings

identifies you as a victim
to the next perpetrator.

To Top of Page