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Tackle Today: FOMO

September 13, 2018

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≈ Or: How to avoid a hangover. ≈

“Fear Of Missing Out is a pervasive apprehension that others might be having rewarding experiences from which one is absent. […], which may lead to a compulsive concern that one might miss an opportunity for social interaction, a novel experience, a **profitable investment***, or other satisfying events.”


In the financial markets, we lose opportunities every single day but also find them every single day. The thing is that the FOMO can lead us to incur in the Type I Error. The Type I Error, according to statistical hypothesis testing, is to falsely infer the existence of something that is not there, while a Type II Error is to falsely infer the absence of something that is.

The Type II Error will make us lose an opportunity which is OK. The Type I Error will make us lose our shirts.

If you are the type of person that has high levels of FOMO in your blood and want to trade every single asset out there, naturally increasing the probability of a Type I Error occurrence, you have to spend more time measuring risk. That’s the only way you won’t go broke. You have to have specific risk/reward and position sizing rules in place and follow them to the letter.

The Type II Error leads to regret. The Type I Error leads to a hangover from which you might never recover.

Chart of the Day

The Aussie Fakeout

The chart above shows the AUD/USD pair (2016/2017 daily) with a major resistance level around 0.77500. Say you have high levels of FOMO in your blood. Because you can’t miss any opportunity out there, you place a trigger to get long on AUD as soon as it breaks that level. Not only the Aussie failed to breakout twice but touched the resistance many times in the course of an entire year. Depending on where you set your entry trigger, how many times you would’ve been stopped out? Although the FOMO is not good for trading, the main question is: how much would you lose on each fake entry? Position sizing becomes even more critical on situations like this.

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