Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Why I Post my Trades on Stocktwits

Stocktwits is a site founded by Howard Lindzon that allows just about anyone to comment on most publicly traded stocks.  Many people use it to ask questions, share their opinions, or plug their newsletters or websites.   I like to post my trades there, with entrances and exits.

I started with the goal of posting all my trades, but have decided I don’t have the time, or the interest in sharing every detail of my trading.  Still, I do find it helpful to share not only what I am thinking at a given moment, but also the actions I have taken.  I may post what I buy, and I try to give an idea of the price I paid or sold at, and a vague I idea of the size of the trade.  One thing I don’t do is give the number of shares or options.  How much I invest is really only my business.

Why do I share this? OK, first, this is NOT why I post my trades:
  1.  I don’t post to gloat on my winners.  Investing is really difficult, and no one needs to know how smart I am, or that I pretend to be.  If I see someone gloating, it’s a real turn-off.
  2. I don’t post to sell anything, because I am not selling anything.  No newsletters, websites, or books.  Yet.  You can’t buy my ideas on stock trades, because they aren’t for sale.  I don’t know that anyone would pay for them anyway.

So, why do I share them?
  1. Someone may get some benefit, or education.  I have gotten nice notes from people who did say they learned something from what I am doing, usually from a follow up question.  I have gotten some nice (and some not so nice) responses from people who take the other side.  That’s OK, it’s what makes a market.
  2. The biggest reason I post is that it keeps me honest with myself.  If I know that I will be sharing my trades, it is a lot harder to take a risky, unjustified position (a “flyer”).  Like buying options before an earnings report, or shorting a momentum stock.  I may still do these dumb things, but if I plan to expose my thinking to the world, I would like there to actually be some thought to expose. 

Best of luck trading.  Nothing here is a solicitation to buy or sell securities.  

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