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February 12, 2019 | To Forecast Stocks, First Switch Off a Big Part of Your Brain

Rick Ackerman

Rick Ackerman is the editor of Rick’s Picks, an online service geared to traders of stocks, options, index futures and commodities. His detailed trading strategies have appeared since the early 1990s in Black Box Forecasts, a newsletter he founded that originally was geared to professional option traders. Barron’s once labeled him an “intrepid trader” in a headline that alluded to his key role in solving a notorious pill-tampering case. He received a $200,000 reward when a conviction resulted, and the story was retold on TV’s FBI: The Untold Story. His professional background includes 12 years as a market maker in the pits of the Pacific Coast Exchange, three as an investigator with renowned San Francisco private eye Hal Lipset, seven as a reporter and newspaper editor, three as a columnist for the Sunday San Francisco Examiner, and two decades as a contributor to publications ranging from Barron’s to The Antiquarian Bookman to Fleet Street Letter and Utne Reader.

I’ve set aside strongly negative feelings about the U.S. economy and the stock market to focus solely on the charts, which never lie. Trends are trends, and as long as the one in progress continues to exceed prior peaks with each new thrust, the bull must be given the benefit of the doubt. This is quite a stretch for me, since the U.S. housing and auto sectors are imploding, Q1 corporate earnings will go up against unbeatable year-ago numbers, and the next most-powerful economies in the world, China’s and Germany’s, are slipping into recession. Under the circumstances, it’s hard to imagine the stock market making any headway at all, much less achieving new record highs. (See my DJIA tout below.) That is why I have eliminated ‘imagination’ from my brain when pondering the markets.  That’s the next best thing to eliminating the brain itself from the process. Trust me when I say that forecasting stocks is simply not a thinking man’s game.

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February 12th, 2019

Posted In: Rick's Picks

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