# My stock market –dabblings.

Over the last couple of years, I’ve been dabbling, and really just buying on impulse and random
reading online stock tips and forums. At the year-end while filing taxes and tallying up I realized(not
surprisingly, I might add) I’ve lost money(Thanks to the bull market, only little).
Which is when I realized, I’ve been half-assing the amount of research, I should do before investing
in stock market, and what’s worse, I’ve been falling prey to the fallacy ” a little knowledge is a
dangerous thing”.
So this is an attempt to hide the crime and in the process, build a system to avoid committing the
crime in the future.

Before I begin, some of the sources, I’ve been half-assing for research,(but good sources
nevertheless) are:

This is a first of a series of posts:

Most of the data, I used(and will use for the series) in the following analysis was picked up from investr(thanks to r/hapuchu,
for sharing the data), but can be picked up by crawling the webpages of companise for quarterly
and/or annual reports, and then parsing the pdf to consume them.

## Some Caveats and Exceptions:

• –I’m writing this around the end/last week of february.
• — These are all stocks I traded in starting in 2nd half of 2015.
• — I’ve done some stock investment during the 2006-2009, made some money, but due to
portfolio/cashflow management, had to sell a bunch of them in 2009, which put overall
returns negative and stopped trading, leaving whatever was left. But learnt the lesson, not to put any amount of money I’m not ok with losing into stocks.

• — I’m working in the IT industry, and have spent some spare-time reading Finance, but
nowhere near dedicated or focussed. (Not sure that kinda reading is good.)

• — Most of the energy stocks are from when I decided I’ll go thematic on renewable energy
and bought them, but lost patience/nerve when the stocks went down and eventually sold off

## Direct-Equity[^1] Portfolio Opinions:

• Way too many stocks
• Way too disorganized and unfocused and under researched
• Not enough Focus on long-term(think companies that’ll stay for > 100 years)
• Balance long-term (black-swan)focus with dividend-based focus(For ex this)

## Reasoning:

• I’ve seen the share price of this it has been hovering around 1000 for the
10 years I’ve seen this stock, so this can be part of a stable portfolio.

## Flaws:

• This is absurd, as for all I know, the stock could have split 10 times in
those 10 years, which means the stock has risen or merged, which means it
has fallen. I haven’t checked it but the point is that it is a fallacy.

## Outcome:

• It has fallen a little bit, but I’m still keeping it and might even buy
more.

• Geometric Ltd.

## Reasoning:

• Not much, just that I’ve like Infy stocks in the past, and they seemed to
be
on a downtick

## Flaws:

• Well it’s just an impulse buy, and not better than gambling.

## Outcome:

• It has recovered and got back to trading better, but that’s just luck.

## Reasoning:

• Can’t even remember, where but it was some analyst rating and read

## Flaws:

• Belief in expert fallacy.

## Outcome:

• Loss. Panicked and sold at 200. It seems to be doing a little better, but
even now it would be a loss for me to sell, however the system of
investment was wrong.

• HDFC Bank

## Reasoning:

• Can’t even remember, where but it was blog/reddit thread

## Flaws:

• Belief in expert fallacy.
• Belief in crowd decision fallacy??

## Outcome:

• Up by about 20% lucky bull ride

## Reasoning:

• Analyst recommendation

## Flaws:

• belief-in-Expert-bias

## Outcome:

• Down by about 1/7th (Caveat: Down only because they had a rights issue
that I missed)

• Manappuram Finance

## Outcome:

• Gained a bit.(can’t be bothered to track sale date and say how much)

• Orient Green Power

## Reasoning:

• I’ve had good experience buying it during the IPO and making money(
• I’ve a bias for the non-renewable sector ‘s future prospects.

## Fallacy:

• Using inductive reasoning when there’s no reason(IPO is different from regular trading)
• Prior Bias (Ideally should have built a prediction, and accounted for non-renewable energy’s future bias I have)

## Reasoning:

• Building a dividend portfolio  and saw good ratings about it on investr’s magic formula
• Bought a scooter and decided, I could buy some auto stocks

## Reasoning:

• I was in a automobile theme, and maruti has a big brand in India
• Also was thinking of future plans for a car, and maruti was an automatic pick

## Flaws:

• It has a relatively higher P/E

## Reasoning:

• Was in a automobile theme,
• Bought a TVS Scooter

## Reasoning:

• I wanted to pick up some in airlines(theme idea) and found that indigo has
a high P/E so picked up spice jet(based on investr score)

• Dabur India

## Outcome:

• A bit down by about 5%

• Slightly up

## Moral/TODO:

• Shorten the number of stocks and focus the money into a few
• Build a internal system for analyzing companies before invest in the future

[^1] — I might eventually broaden the scope of blog posts, but don’t expect it for a looong, loong time(count in decades)…

# Redefining Literacy

Brilliant article on literacy. I can get used to that hope. This is also the reason, I am considering an mba. :-)

the collation of reading and writing with exposition and composition of text has caused a value bubble in literacy/school/workplace.
Currently the market for exposition and composition/condensation is rarefied and non-existent and definitely paid less than many other professions and probably less than even what people good at exposition and compositions/condensation would prefer.

For evidence look at teaching as a profession and those who do it and more importantly the motivations behind those professors and teachers.

One example of the same author and ribbonfarm blog is this post . Here he’s clearly expositing ideas more abstract the original Morning is wiser than evening proverb. He not only goes all meta , but constructs a good loosely coupled arc of quite a few concepts and posts he blogs about. And that last part is what makes me go back to his blog regularly, it’s very compelling story-telling. There are times, i hate his dense, writing style, because am not interested in all the cognitive work required to decipher the implications and end up speed reading, but keep going back to his blog for that coherence in his blog posts.

Some of them are very loosely coupled, some are tight, but most importantly they(blog posts and ideas in them) are like legos blocks, you can go back read, disassemble and reconstruct. I have come to believe that the dense, writing style is a necessary condition for this style of story-telling and rather very essential. Infact, I believe my preference for simpler, technical manual style writing is what stops me from becoming a better story-teller. The reason i believe this dense style is essential, is it allows the author write more in lesser time and more importantly, write about naturally complex/conflated ideas, without wasting too much time simplifying and disassembling them.

Ever since i read about cognates here . I have been obsessed about it and now that’s word that comes to mind to replace the legos block analogy with a new term. Unfortunately, reading about it on Wikipedia only makes me feel that the definition is very narrow. Perhaps that’s a good thing from the linguistics viewpoint. To me, the definition of cognate is: a summary of neurological states. In that context, i would say, language is a tool for transferring/transmitting/communicating cognates from on living being to another. And perhaps, that’s one of the reasons we have so many conflicts and issues in interpersonal relationships. As the material wealth gets mass produced more and more the lack of ability to transfer/communicate cognates becomes more and more evident.

And the culture of learning and repeating accurately comes in the way of expositing and condensing cognates from and into words. Infact it trains us to not do that at all or as that being a waste of time.

# Easiest and hardest classes to teach

This explains a great deal about, why I enjoyed differential equations better and hated stats courses. I always have trouble ignoring ambiguity and focussing on the method to get results. Sigh..fancy, my life would have been better otherwise.(note:it’s just a fantasy, I have no way of testing it.) My guide would have called it global vs local..$textsuperscript{8}$
Anyway, finally learning to focus on what I can do? And let everything else be dealt with as they come.:-)
$ihbarfrac{partial}{partial t}left|Psi(t)right>=Hleft|Psi(t)right>$

# letting go

What do you do when you realize you have a chronic condition/problem in letting go? (i.e: when you realize that you have a tendency to never leave the past alone and an OCD to recall what your masters’ thesis guide would have said/actually said, what your ex-startup boss would have said/said, what your ex-colleagues said/would have said..) You sigh, accept it and learn to manage it. You learn that you do ruminate not just food, but thought past experiences, thoughts actions etc..

What do you do, you shrug, learn how to manage it.. easy to say… but these lessons are harder to learn……. for a couple of reasons
1. They are very intrinsic nature, and whatever people have tried to talk about have been biased by their metaphors.
2. It is vague and general enough to be a Research/subject area of itself on it’s own. Heck, i guess it would even take Marvin(the paranoid android) a long time get to some useful conclusions..

Well, you can also do another thing, start thinking about your mindspace/attention as an asset(much like money) and watch how you use it?? i.e the metaphors you are using..like this article on money.

# My first trek experience around chennai

the trek to nagalapuram on days 31-Dec-2011 and 01-Jan-2012
Ok, now that a couple of post trek write-ups are in, i am forced to keep my promise and write up… Since,it(the trek) was a last minute get-out of jail act for me , i’ll stick to my mental states(mostly affective) during the trek* .

To begin with, i was both excited and nervous about meeting a group of strangers and going on a trek with them. Not because, I haven’t done it before, but because i hadn’t done it in about year and a half(meeting a group of strangers face to face). Hanging around in IRC doesn’t count as meeting strangers, given the anonymity and protection of a computer and internet in between. I have been in my nerd shell for the last couple of years.It was my re-entry to trekking and social life(as in meeting and spending time with a group of people, not to mention sleeping :-)) Anyway after having been in a social exile* for close to 1 and a half years i bit the bulllet and went for the trek.

Anyway,first side-effect of it was fitful short sleep. So there i was out around 3.45ish planning to walk till vadapalani(from valluvar kottam)**.
Well, luckily, i hitchhiked instead and there i was at vadapalani just about 4. Now begins the frustrating wait, as these things go, whenever there’s a cab involved almost always it gets delayed, infact the earlier the start the longer the delay. I know this for sure now, and had a hunch before i started that early, damn if only i had followed my hunch. So there i was waiting for close to an hour, oscillating between going to koyambedu in one of the share-autos and waiting, well you know which side won out.(the lazy side, which demanded little thinking/work of course…:-P)

At the end of the trek,i.e the 2nd day, i was singing out aloud in that uniquely out of tune way i do. I mean the last time i can remember singing aloud in the presence of a bunch of people was also in a trek.. though i can’t remember which one… And my last trek before this was atleast a year and a half ago…

On the other hand, it also brought to me the reason i like to take responsibility and do stuff for others(aka philanthropy/social service) is because i have left over energy(only on the second day, did i really volunteer to help out, though it turned to be not necessary.)
Finally, i get in the cab, i find among a bunch of new faces, just introducing ourselves, to whoever is the nearest and focussing on getting the hell out of the mad,crazy,noisy,concrete jungle that is chennai… And SN is in the lead, with a google map for help and figuring out the route.Being barely awake, i can’t remember much of the discussion that was going on at that time.
Now we finally leave from vadapalani and go to koyambedu, where we pickup SV and a couple of other guys. Well, the moment we got down, we had sethu looking for anand, and somehow he didn’t register me telling him i am anand must’ve been my mumbling accent:-).. Anyway, i introduced myself twice as anand and things were fine..

And on we went till ottakavi where we were joined by the trio from bangalore. Now this was around 7.30-8.00 and this is where i starte my first mistake of not finding a breakfast right here.. and going for a chips packet instead #\$#@\$%***…
Anyway, on we went towards nagala till the road metamorphosed first into mud-filled maattu vandi paathai and later into not a road at all. At this point there was a small trickle of water flowing across the path and we decided to start walking from here, and not risk push the TT further…So as we get out in the hot sun, we split up the food and stuff, i chuck all my extra luggage i was carrying,Also making the mistake of throwing away the towel i had. i guess that makes me a bad hitchhiker in the galaxy….:-(

Now about half a kilometre in and the road (nay mud-path) became less of a path and more of a slushy land.about half a km more and we hit the dam we climbed up to see there’s no Dam wall or rather it has been flooded with water and is invisible, that must have been the first sign for previous trekkers to think that all is not well and going according to plan.Either way, they didn’t give any sign of panic and we started moving around the dam, instead of across as has been the norm in the past.

So as we started off pretty boringly or eventlessly, we reached till the first pool within no time or perhaps no events.. i can’t recall much going on except the usual chatter.
Ok, i’ll spare myself and you of repeating what others have already written and fast-forward to the end..
At the end of the trek,i.e the 2nd day, i was singing out aloud in that uniquely out of tune way i do. I mean the last time i can remember singing aloud in the presence of a bunch of people was also in a trek.. though i can’t remember which one… And my last trek before this was atleast a year and a half ago…

On the other hand, it also brought to me the reason i like to take responsibility and do stuff for others(aka philanthropy/social service) is because i have left over energy(only on the second day, did i really volunteer to help out, though it turned to be not necessary.)

Anyway, if this was a social psychology experiment, this would be the report/analysis of the results..

The results are in:
1. I do enjoy preaching and indulge in it as often as i can (just ask VR, how many times i launched into a lecture, when he tried to even make a minor suggestion :-P)… I want to say teaching but am not sure that it the difference is subtle.
2.I am about 10-20% less fit than I was 4-5 years ago and it’s time to s tart working out just to maintain the current fitness. and hopefully work my ass off to get back to that old fitness level.

3.And my love/cate relationship with limelight continues**

4. I realized why i loved aval as a favourite evening snack when i was a kid.. The high fibre-to-calorie ratio.Darn it’s one of the stuff with high fibre content that can hold of the digestive acids for a long time. Clearly a bowl(200g??) of (raw)aval can hold off about 60-70% of my lunchtime hunger…That’s darn amazing…given how little it looks and weighs..

5.Oh for all my fantasies about having grown up i still have trouble resisting a race/competition for alpha/leader status.. The fast climb from the first pool and my attempt at trying to keep pace with the leader and getting slowed down extremely later because of that overexertion earlier.

OTOH, there are some areas where i can compete, without The climb to the 50m falls on sunday… long, bare-footed,treacherous due to the slipperiness and stream.. Well i still couldn’t keep pace with SN, who was way ahead of me, but i had the endurance to keep following him and not fall behind. Wise of me not to quicken up to match his pace..:-) Clearly my sprinting abilities are limited, at the moment and i should really train for high speed activities… instead of endurance activities. My endurance abilities seem to be on par with the average, while sprinting is not..

6. Also am not as ‘living in the present’ as i would like to fool myself into. a,Losing the wallet in the TT, while getting off to home, b, Not picking up the change of clothes/memory card in phone/towel at the start of the trek..Oh and also not discussing with SN before the trek about using floaters and ignoring the shoes part.

Also, I better watch out on how to manage my hunger. When i have gone hungry for too long a time, i tend to take too many risky shortcuts.(The attempt to take lead on the first day during that steep climb up from first pool, after breakfast, The river crossing while climbing down on the second day towards the first pool.)
Luckily for me, in general there’s a huge safety factor built into my system, that i can pull it off, but i would rather not have it linked to my hunger,but would like to be able to choose to do it deliberately. In other words, i still maintain that i could have pulled off that river crossing, and could have pulled off that climb rate 5 year ago…

On the good side, i did show signs of tempering my first reactions with relatively neutral exceptions…(i.e that argument with S about amount of food i eat, first reaction was to swear, instead managed to turn and pick up more food and walk away.)

Also, when L fell down and people were shouting, i waited to try and have a look at what the actual situation is… Ofcourse that doesn’t count, because i didn’t know swimming anyway, and couldn’t have done any much by instinctive reaction, which was to just jump in(as stupid and cavemanish as it is Darn…..:-)

Overall all of these lessons + a couple of days away from the hustlebustle of chennai, for the price of a few cuts and bruises, sore shoulders and stiff neck, hell, let’s do it every weekend……It’s a great deal….No one can beat it, if you think you can go ahead:-)

And my perceptive ability to sense how others’ feel about a conversation is out of whack indeed. .Just remember the number of times i went on about something with S(good vs bad me quoting steve jobs obliviously) and VR(Branding, why a post-trek has to be edited brand image gyaan etc..)
Honestly, the social exile has worked in that sense of becoming indifferent to other people’s feelings.. Remember the argument with VR towards the end of the trek at the river crossing just before the first pool.

Anyway, i ended it up on a high note after all. As i said, i don’t remember singing aloud(as horribly off-tune as only i can) in the presence of people in atleast a couple of years, so it was quite refreshing.

** — Sigh..Looks like am doomed to be dogged by it throughout my life.. Ah.. well i might as well face it and enjoy facing it..:-P Seems it’s the same case with rigour and/or discipline.

* — Well, in the sense of the amount of
contiguous time i spend in the company of others. i.e to say less than 10 hrs in a room.

# Teaching– introspection

Damn it .. I just can’t help but teach when i get an oppurtunity…. Guess i have some inherent teaching genes or more likely memes/habits, that refuse to die…

# Introspection

The more time i spend at work, on filling up timesheets and basically accounting for the work i do, the more i see messed up management practices borrowed from theories that were developed for the work environments during the industrial revolution and look like caveman’s club for work in the information/knowledge workers field….

Damn, i might have to go for an MBA after all…

# Apparation Time

Time to apparate. Anand Focus on the 3D’s and practice.. Determination,Destination,Deliberation. Exactly in that order of priority. The other orders(Deliberation,Determination,Destination or Destination,Determination,Deliberation) both have failed in your past experience. Now it’s time to focus on the other leftover order and repeat and repeat.

# Lumosity trends

Have opened an account at lumosity and started playing it at various times. think after about 10-11 hrs, am now at the baseline level and can start documenting variance in performance over the scores there.
22-Sep-2011 10:18 hrs.
Speed and Problem Solving skills have risen from last night’s score. Memory, seems to have taken a dip, though it looks insignificant due to the nature of the games i got this morning selected by the training session.
Attention seems to have gone down too. though this looks like it might be a little more significant.
Flexibility has gone down, but think this is again insignificant due to the nature of games.

Just played out another set of games.. and tried a new attention game.. guess what my Attn BPI shot up by a 100 points.. clearly something to be said for change of task for shooting up attention….
1-Oct-2011
A very good week in terms of exercise routine. Lumosity trends have been interesting.
Memory and problem solving have remained same or small insignificant increase. Attention and Flexibility have continued increasing at the steep rate they have been over the last couple of weeks. Speed has increased too, but not as much as in the last couple of weeks.
Hmm… interesting…

Will need to get into a little more well designed experimenting..perhaps diet?? but then, am yet to get it set down to some baseline yet… But one thing is sure the data(weekly) is inconclusive about exercising.. will continue for a couple more weeks and see..as i only started recording (exercise) since 20th and weekly comes only till 26th..

Update: 04-Oct-2011.
Ok this doesn’t make any sense at all. rate of improvement speed games has actually fallen. Looks like the baseline has not yet been settled yet. So for the next couple of weeks or so only one game a day, till i get a flat line for weekly changes. Then begins the experimentation with diet and exercise intensity etc…

Update: 08-Oct-2011
Clearly speed goes up based on the time of the day. Mornings are faster compared to evenings