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on 15 October 2017
The book focuses on the story of commodity trader Richard Dennis who bet against a colleague that trading was a skill that could be taught, as opposed to an inherent talent. It is primarily written in a chronological format, going through the story of how a group of entirely novice investors were taught to trade by Dennis, to much success using technical analysis (purchasing/selling entirely based on patterns in the price of a product).

After telling the story of the bet/participants, the book describes their further achievements showing how many of them used this knowledge as a cornerstone to become successful traders. It also lays out the major rules and learning points taught within the programme, so the reader can attempt to learn and analyse their validity if they wish. Overall its an interesting read that supports the idea of active trend following within investing.
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on 24 July 2017
This is a book for every investor or stock trader. I have found the book highly inspiring and very informative.
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on 23 April 2017
What a story! And it is told with passion...
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on 13 March 2015
Lots of talking about nothing important.
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on 15 November 2009
Firstly let me state one thing, I have dabbled in and out of trading since the age of 18, to my current ripe age of 26. Have I made mistakes, TONS, have I bought books on the subject, TONS! Some I never even read, but of the ones I have purchased and read, I can state 100% that if you have to buy one book on trading. BUY THIS ONE.

What Covel does so successfully, is not only detail the trading approach and mechanisms used by the traders in question. But he writes in such a way, that the concepts and methodology are clear and concise and can be copied directly by anyone who is serious about becoming a little more clutter free and disciplined.

This book is not only written in a clear and concise manner, but in a manner that I found to be extremely motivating. If there is one thing Covel clearly is, is an excellent communicator. I have read a few of his books and this is a common theme, reading them is easy and you find yourself motivated to apply strategies.

Buy this book, AND READ IT :D
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on 4 November 2017
This book contains biographies of successful trend-following traders, trading psychology and lots and lots of performance statistics. What it does not contain are any actual details of how to do it. There is no information at all on how to devise a successful trend-following strategy. Anyone who has actually tried this will know that there are many critical factors which have to be got right - portfolio selection, position sizing, risk and so on - and then the system has to be extensively tested before use. The author waves all this aside as mere details.

The topic is only briefly touched upon in an appendix, which gives a very simplistic mechanical system based on channel breakouts. No explanation is given for the choice of parameters, but there are (of course!) detailed performance statistics. These show the results of trading the system for a single commodity over a 10-year period, during which it just happened to be trending strongly for most of the time.

I like trading books to be sober and objective (unless they are full of good anecdotes, which this one isn't). I found the author's arrogance, dogmatism and incessant cheerleading highly irritating. Trend-following hedge fund managers are treated with fawning idolisation, while contempt and derision are hurled at anyone who dares follow a different approach. He seems genuinely unable to believe that it is possible to be a highly successful trader and not be a trend follower. This is perplexing, since there are several references to Schwager's "Market Wizards" books, which are full of counterexamples (and good anecdotes).

The only way I can see anyone learning how to make money from this book is if they already have a successful, fully tested, trend-following system and need to be convinced it's safe to go ahead with it. What's that? You're convinced by the performance statistics but don't have a system? Don't worry, the author knows people who have one and will let you invest your money in theirs. For a suitable fee, of course.

This book makes no attempt to be a trading manual. It is purely and simply a sales pitch on behalf of trend-following hedge funds. The title is completely misleading and I find it very surprising a reputable publisher like the FT Press was prepared to put it on the cover.
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on 17 June 2016
I found this book very interesting and found some answers i was looking for. Easy to understand, improves understanding about trading. Recommended
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on 2 January 2009
This book covers the story of the Turtles - a group of non-traders that applied to a newspaper advert from two of Chicago's best traders.
In writing this book, Michael Covel has managed to get interviews with many of the Turtles. He also goes into the story of the Turtles and also talks about the performance of the Turtles (and related traders) and because the book does not focus on any one of these areas it satisfies none well.
The way he writes the story of the Turtles is too dry to make it an entertaining read. The technical trading stuff lacks the depth to make it useful (as mentioned in another review Curtis Faith's "Way of the Turtle" is a much better primer for a Turtle style of trading) and the performance figures seem to fall foul of Michael Covel's biggest weakness in my opinion - his utter belief that the ONLY way to trade is a trend following style.
You cannot argue with the long term records of many of the trend-following traders he talks about, but it does get up my nose that any other successful traders are basically either derided or we are told they are also trend-followers.
Essentially a book that could have been great, but while there is some good information and interviews, overall it is an unsatisfying read.
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on 9 January 2008
The tale of the turtles must be one of the most interesting, and materially successful, wagers in the history of investment.

Richard Dennis, an iconoclastic, wildcatting, independent Chicago trader, had by 1983 made hundreds of millions of dollars from an initial grubstake of just a few hundred.

Dennis made that fortune on his own terms, in less than 15 years, with no formal training or guidance from anyone. He took calculated risks leveraging up huge amounts of money.

In late 1983 Dennis bet his then partner Bill Eckhardt that he could teach beginners with no experience how to trade to make millions in the same way that he had. His partner responded that great traders were born, not bred. The two men decided to find out who was right. They hired and trained students, nicknamed "Turtles" after Dennis visited a turtle breeding farm, and gave them some simple rules to follow.

In essence, Dennis taught trend following: cutting your losses, and letting your winners run. This may sound easy, but it's a strategy that runs counter to basic human psychology. The turtles managed to make it work by implementing a rigid, rules-based approach for sizing, entering and exiting trades. And the results were - and are - spectacular. As examples of funds managed by successful turtles, Chesapeake Capital-Diversified Fund, with assets of over $1.5bn, had delivered at the time of writing total returns of over 1,400%. EMC Capital Management-Classic, with a longer track record, has delivered total returns of over 16,000%.

For those interested in the topic of trend-following - a more mechanistic and objective style of trading favoured by many hedge funds, as opposed to the largely discretionary management favoured by traditional long-only managers, Michael Covel's latest book is a must-read.
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on 11 August 2017
If you want to be successful at trading - trend following is the way. The book confirms the concepts of trend following and quite frankly is a breath of fresh air in how the author approaches this subject. This book is a must read !
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