More on Entrepreneurship/Creators
1 year ago
Growth tactics that grew businesses from 1 to 100
Everyone wants a scalable startup.
Innovation helps launch a startup. The secret to a scalable business is growth trials (from 1 to 100).
Growth marketing combines marketing and product development for long-term growth.
Today, I'll explain growth hacking strategies popular startups used to scale.
1/ A Facebook user's social value is proportional to their friends.
Facebook built its user base using content marketing and paid ads. Mark and his investors feared in 2007 when Facebook's growth stalled at 90 million users.
Chamath Palihapitiya was brought in by Mark.
The team tested SEO keywords and MAU chasing. The growth team introduced “people you may know”
This feature reunited long-lost friends and family. Casual users became power users as the retention curve flattened.
Growth Hack Insights: With social network effect the value of your product or platform increases exponentially if you have users you know or can relate with.
2/ Airbnb - Focus on your value propositions
Airbnb nearly failed in 2009. The company's weekly revenue was $200 and they had less than 2 months of runway.
Enter Paul Graham. The team noticed a pattern in 40 listings. Their website's property photos sucked.
Because these photos were taken with regular smartphones. Users didn't like the first impression.
Graham suggested traveling to New York to rent a camera, meet with property owners, and replace amateur photos with high-resolution ones.
A week later, the team's weekly revenue doubled to $400, indicating they were on track.
Growth Hack Insights: When selling an “online experience” ensure that your value proposition is aesthetic enough for users to enjoy being associated with them.
3/ Zomato - A company's smartphone push ensured growth.
Zomato delivers food. User retention was a challenge for the founders. Indian food customers are notorious for switching brands at the drop of a hat.
Zomato wanted users to order food online and repeat orders throughout the week.
Zomato created an attractive website with “near me” keywords for SEO indexing.
Zomato gambled to increase repeat orders. They only allowed mobile app food orders.
Zomato thought mobile apps were stickier. Product innovations in search/discovery/ordering or marketing campaigns like discounts/in-app notifications/nudges can improve user experience.
Zomato went public in 2021 after users kept ordering food online.
Growth Hack Insights: To improve user retention try to build platforms that build user stickiness. Your product and marketing team will do the rest for them.
4/ Hotmail - Signaling helps build premium users.
Ever sent or received an email or tweet with a sign — sent from iPhone?
Hotmail did it first! One investor suggested Hotmail add a signature to every email.
Overnight, thousands joined the company. Six months later, the company had 1 million users.
When serving an existing customer, improve their social standing. Signaling keeps the top 1%.
5/ Dropbox - Respect loyal customers
Dropbox is a company that puts people over profits. The company prioritized existing users.
Dropbox rewarded loyal users by offering 250 MB of free storage to anyone who referred a friend. The referral hack helped Dropbox get millions of downloads in its first few months.
Growth Hack Insights: Think of ways to improve the social positioning of your end-user when you are serving an existing customer. Signaling goes a long way in attracting the top 1% to stay.
These experiments weren’t hacks. Hundreds of failed experiments and user research drove these experiments. Scaling up experiments is difficult.
Contact me if you want to grow your startup's user base.
1 year ago
10 hard lessons from founding a startup.
Here is the ugly stuff, read this if you have a founder in your life or are trying to become one. Your call.
#1 You'll try to talk yourself to sleep, but it won't always work.
As founders, we're all driven. Good and bad, you're restless. Success requires resistance and discipline. Your startup will be on your mind 24/7, and not everyone will have the patience to listen to your worries, ideas, and coffee runs. You become more self-sufficient than ever before.
#2 No one will understand what you're going through unless they've been a founder.
Some of my closest friends don't understand the work that goes into starting a business, and we can't blame them.
#3 You'll feel alienated.
Your problems aren't common; calling your bestie won't help. You must search hard for the right resources. It alienates you from conversations you no longer relate to. (No 4th of July, no long weekends!)
#4 Since you're your "own boss," people assume you have lots of free time.
Do you agree? I was on a webinar with lots of new entrepreneurs, and one woman said, "I started my own business so I could have more time for myself." This may be true for some lucky people, and you can be flexible with your schedule. If you want your business to succeed, you'll probably be its slave for a while.
#5 No time for illness or family emergencies.
Both last month. Oh, no! Physically and emotionally withdrawing at the worst times will give you perspective. I learned this the hard way because I was too stubborn to postpone an important interview. I thought if I rested all day and only took one call, I'd be fine. Nope. I had a fever and my mind wasn't as sharp, so my performance and audience interaction suffered. Nope. Better to delay than miss out.
Oh, and setting a "OoO" makes you cringe.
#6 Good luck with your mental health, perfectionists.
When building a startup, it's difficult to accept that there won't be enough time to do everything. You can't make them all, not perfectly. You must learn to accept things that are done but not perfect.
#7 As a founder, you'll make mistakes, but you'll want to make them quickly so you can learn.
Hard lessons are learned quicker. You'll need to pivot and try new things often; some won't work, and it's best to discover them sooner rather than later.
#8 Pyramid schemes abound.
I didn't realize how bad it was until I started a company. You must spy and constantly research. As a founder, you'll receive many emails from people claiming to "support" you. Be wary and keep your eyes open. When it's too good to be true. Some "companies" will try to get you to pay for "competitions" to "pitch at events." Don't do it.
#9 Keep your competitor research to a minimum.
Actually, competition is good. It means there's a market for those solutions. However, this can be mentally exhausting too. Learn about their geography and updates, but that's it.
#10 You'll feel guilty taking vacation.
I don't know what to say, but I no longer enjoy watching TV, and that's okay. Pay attention to things that enrich you, bring you joy, and have fun. It boosts creativity.
Being a startup founder may be one of the hardest professional challenges you face, but it's also a great learning experience. Your passion will take you places you never imagined and open doors to opportunities you wouldn't have otherwise. You'll meet amazing people. No regrets, no complaints. It's a roller coaster, but the good days are great.
Miss anything? Comment below
1 year ago
The three-year business plan is obsolete for startups.
If asked, run.
An entrepreneur asked me about her pitch deck. A Platform as a Service (PaaS).
She told me she hadn't done her 5-year forecasts but would soon.
I said, Don't bother. I added "time-wasting."
“I've been asked”, she said.
“Get another VC. If he asks, it's because he doesn't understand your solution or to waste your time.”
Some VCs are lagging. They're still using steam engines.
10-years ago, 5-year forecasts were requested.
Since then, we've adopted a 3-year plan.
But It's outdated.
Max one year.
What has happened?
Revolutionary technology. NO-CODE.
Product viability tests are shorter. Hugely. SaaS and PaaS.
Let me explain:
Building a minimum viable product (MVP) that works only takes a few months.
1 to 2 months for practical testing.
Your company plan can be validated or rejected in 4 months as a consequence.
After validation, you can ask for VC money. Even while a prototype can generate revenue, you may not require any.
Good VCs won't ask for a 3-year business plan in that instance.
If you want, establish a three-year plan, but realize that the second year will be different.
You may have changed your business model by then.
A VC isn't interested in a three-year business plan because your solution may change.
Your ability to create revenue will be key.
But also, to pivot.
They will be interested in your value proposition.
They will want to know what differentiates you from other competitors and why people will buy your product over another.
What will interest them is your resilience, your ability to bounce back.
Not to mention your mindset. The fact that you won’t get discouraged at the slightest setback.
The grit you have when facing adversity, as challenges will surely mark your journey.
The authenticity of your approach. They’ll want to know that you’re not just in it for the money, let alone to show off.
The fact that you put your guts into it and that you are passionate about it. Because entrepreneurship is a leap of faith, a leap into the void.
They’ll want to make sure you are prepared for it because it’s not going to be a walk in the park.
They’ll want to know your background and why you got into it.
They’ll also want to know your family history.
And what you’re like in real life.
So a 5-year plan…. You can bet they won’t give a damn. Like their first pair of shoes.
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1 year ago
(The author's opinions should not be used to make investment decisions or as a recommendation to invest.)
The pandemic and social media pseudoscience have made us all epidemiologists, for better or worse. Flattening the curve, social distancing, lockdowns—remember? Some of you may remember R0 (R naught), the number of healthy humans the average COVID-infected person infects. Thankfully, the world has moved on from Greater China's nightmare. Politicians have refocused their talent for misdirection on getting their constituents invested in the war for Russian Reunification or Russian Aggression, depending on your side of the iron curtain.
Humanity battles two fronts. A war against an invisible virus (I know your Commander in Chief might have told you COVID is over, but viruses don't follow election cycles and their economic impacts linger long after the last rapid-test clinic has closed); and an undeclared World War between US/NATO and Eurasia/Russia/China. The fiscal and monetary authorities' current policies aim to mitigate these two conflicts' economic effects.
Since all politicians are short-sighted, they usually print money to solve most problems. Printing money is the easiest and fastest way to solve most problems because it can be done immediately without much discussion. The alternative—long-term restructuring of our global economy—would hurt stakeholders and require an honest discussion about our civilization's state. Both of those requirements are non-starters for our short-sighted political friends, so whether your government practices capitalism, communism, socialism, or fascism, they all turn to printing money-ism to solve all problems.
Free money stimulates demand, so people buy crap. Overbuying shit raises prices. Inflation. Every nation has food, energy, or goods inflation. The once-docile plebes demand action when the latter two subsets of inflation rise rapidly. They will be heard at the polls or in the streets. What would you do to feed your crying hungry child?
Global central banks During the pandemic, the Fed, PBOC, BOJ, ECB, and BOE printed money to aid their governments. They worried about inflation and promised to remove fiat liquidity and tighten monetary conditions.
Imagine Nate Diaz's round-house kick to the face. The financial markets probably felt that way when the US and a few others withdrew fiat wampum. Sovereign debt markets suffered a near-record bond market rout.
The undeclared WW3 is intensifying, with recent gas pipeline attacks. The global economy is already struggling, and credit withdrawal will worsen the situation. The next pandemic, the Yield Curve Control (YCC) virus, is spreading as major central banks backtrack on inflation promises. All central banks eventually fail.
Here's a scorecard.
In order to save its financial system, BOE recently reverted to Quantitative Easing (QE).
BOJ Continuing YCC to save their banking system and enable affordable government borrowing.
ECB printing money to buy weak EU member bonds, but will soon start Quantitative Tightening (QT).
PBOC Restarting the money printer to give banks liquidity to support the falling residential property market.
Fed raising rates and QT-shrinking balance sheet.
80% of the world's biggest central banks are printing money again. Only the Fed has remained steadfast in the face of a financial market bloodbath, determined to end the inflation for which it is at least partially responsible—the culmination of decades of bad economic policies and a world war.
YCC printing is the worst for fiat currency and society. Because it necessitates central banks fixing a multi-trillion-dollar bond market. YCC central banks promise to infinitely expand their balance sheets to keep a certain interest rate metric below an unnatural ceiling. The market always wins, crushing humanity with inflation.
BOJ's YCC policy is longest-standing. The BOE joined them, and my essay this week argues that the ECB will follow. The ECB joining YCC would make 60% of major central banks follow this terrible policy. Since the PBOC is part of the Chinese financial system, the number could be 80%. The Chinese will lend any amount to meet their economic activity goals.
The BOE committed to a 13-week, GBP 65bn bond price-fixing operation. However, BOEs YCC may return. If you lose to the market, you're stuck. Since the BOE has announced that it will buy your Gilt at inflated prices, why would you not sell them all? Market participants taking advantage of this policy will only push the bank further into the hole it dug itself, so I expect the BOE to re-up this program and count them as YCC.
In a few trading days, the BOE went from a bank determined to slay inflation by raising interest rates and QT to buying an unlimited amount of UK Gilts. I expect the ECB to be dragged kicking and screaming into a similar policy. Spoiler alert: big daddy Fed will eventually die from the YCC virus.
Threadneedle St, London EC2R 8AH, UK
Before we discuss the BOE's recent missteps, a chatroom member called the British royal family the Kardashians with Crowns, which made me laugh. I'm sad about royal attention. If the public was as interested in energy and economic policies as they are in how the late Queen treated Meghan, Duchess of Sussex, UK politicians might not have been able to get away with energy and economic fairy tales.
The BOE printed money to recover from COVID, as all good central banks do. For historical context, this chart shows the BOE's total assets as a percentage of GDP since its founding in the 18th century.
The UK has had a rough three centuries. Pandemics, empire wars, civil wars, world wars. Even so, the BOE's recent money printing was its most aggressive ever!
BOE Total Assets as % of GDP (white) vs. UK CPI
Now, inflation responded slowly to the bank's most aggressive monetary loosening. King Charles wishes the gold line above showed his popularity, but it shows his subjects' suffering.
The BOE recognized early that its money printing caused runaway inflation. In its August 2022 report, the bank predicted that inflation would reach 13% by year end before aggressively tapering in 2023 and 2024.
Aug 2022 BOE Monetary Policy Report
The BOE was the first major central bank to reduce its balance sheet and raise its policy rate to help.
The BOE first raised rates in December 2021. Back then, JayPow wasn't even considering raising rates.
UK policymakers, like most developed nations, believe in energy fairy tales. Namely, that the developed world, which grew in lockstep with hydrocarbon use, could switch to wind and solar by 2050. The UK's energy import bill has grown while coal, North Sea oil, and possibly stranded shale oil have been ignored.
WW3 is an economic war that is balkanizing energy markets, which will continue to inflate. A nation that imports energy and has printed the most money in its history cannot avoid inflation.
The chart above shows that energy inflation is a major cause of plebe pain.
The UK is hit by a double whammy: the BOE must remove credit to reduce demand, and energy prices must rise due to WW3 inflation. That's not economic growth.
Boris Johnson was knocked out by his country's poor economic performance, not his lockdown at 10 Downing St. Prime Minister Truss and her merry band of fools arrived with the tried-and-true government remedy: goodies for everyone.
She released a budget full of economic stimulants. She cut corporate and individual taxes for the rich. She plans to give poor people vouchers for higher energy bills. Woohoo! Margret Thatcher's new pants suit.
My buddy Jim Bianco said Truss budget's problem is that it works. It will boost activity at a time when inflation is over 10%. Truss' budget didn't include austerity measures like tax increases or spending cuts, which the bond market wanted. The bond market protested.
30-year Gilt yield chart. Yields spiked the most ever after Truss announced her budget, as shown. The Gilt market is the longest-running bond market in the world.
The Gilt market showed the pole who's boss with Cardi B.
Before this, the BOE was super-committed to fighting inflation. To their credit, they raised short-term rates and shrank their balance sheet. However, rapid yield rises threatened to destroy the entire highly leveraged UK financial system overnight, forcing them to change course.
Accounting gimmicks allowed by regulators for pension funds posed a systemic threat to the UK banking system. UK pension funds could use interest rate market levered derivatives to match liabilities. When rates rise, short rate derivatives require more margin. The pension funds spent all their money trying to pick stonks and whatever else their sell side banker could stuff them with, so the historic rate spike would have bankrupted them overnight. The FT describes BOE-supervised chicanery well.
To avoid a financial apocalypse, the BOE in one morning abandoned all their hard work and started buying unlimited long-dated Gilts to drive prices down.
Another reminder to never fight a central bank. The 30-year Gilt is shown above. After the BOE restarted the money printer on September 28, this bond rose 30%. Thirty-fucking-percent! Developed market sovereign bonds rarely move daily. You're invested in His Majesty's government obligations, not a Chinese property developer's offshore USD bond.
The political need to give people goodies to help them fight the terrible economy ran into a financial reality. The central bank protected the UK financial system from asset-price deflation because, like all modern economies, it is debt-based and highly levered. As bad as it is, inflation is not their top priority. The BOE example demonstrated that. To save the financial system, they abandoned almost a year of prudent monetary policy in a few hours. They also started the endgame.
Let's play Central Bankers Say the Darndest Things before we go to the continent (and sorry if you live on a continent other than Europe, but you're not culturally relevant).
Pre-meltdown BOE output:
FT, October 17, 2021 On Sunday, the Bank of England governor warned that it must act to curb inflationary pressure, ignoring financial market moves that have priced in the first interest rate increase before the end of the year.
On July 19, 2022, Gov. Andrew Bailey spoke. Our 2% inflation target is unwavering. We'll do our job.
August 4th 2022 MPC monetary policy announcement According to its mandate, the MPC will sustainably return inflation to 2% in the medium term.
Catherine Mann, MPC member, September 5, 2022 speech. Fast and forceful monetary tightening, possibly followed by a hold or reversal, is better than gradualism because it promotes inflation expectations' role in bringing inflation back to 2% over the medium term.
When their financial system nearly collapsed in one trading session, they said:
The Bank of England's Financial Policy Committee warned on 28 September that gilt market dysfunction threatened UK financial stability. It advised action and supported the Bank's urgent gilt market purchases for financial stability.
It works when the price goes up but not down. Is my crypto portfolio dysfunctional enough to get a BOE bailout?
Next, the EU and ECB. The ECB is also fighting inflation, but it will also succumb to the YCC virus for the same reasons as the BOE.
Frankfurt am Main, ECB Tower, Sonnemannstraße 20, 60314
Only France and Germany matter economically in the EU. Modern European history has focused on keeping Germany and Russia apart. German manufacturing and cheap Russian goods could change geopolitics.
France created the EU to keep Germany down, and the Germans only cooperated because of WWII guilt. France's interests are shared by the US, which lurks in the shadows to prevent a Germany-Russia alliance. A weak EU benefits US politics. Avoid unification of Eurasia. (I paraphrased daddy Felix because I thought quoting a large part of his most recent missive would get me spanked.)
As with everything, understanding Germany's energy policy is the best way to understand why the German economy is fundamentally fucked and why that spells doom for the EU. Germany, the EU's main economic engine, is being crippled by high energy prices, threatening a depression. This economic downturn threatens the union. The ECB may have to abandon plans to shrink its balance sheet and switch to YCC to save the EU's unholy political union.
France did the smart thing and went all in on nuclear energy, which is rare in geopolitics. 70% of electricity is nuclear-powered. Their manufacturing base can survive Russian gas cuts. Germany cannot.
My boy Zoltan made this great graphic showing how screwed Germany is as cheap Russian gas leaves the industrial economy.
$27 billion of Russian gas powers almost $2 trillion of German economic output, a 75x energy leverage. The German public was duped into believing the same energy fairy tales as their politicians, and they overwhelmingly allowed the Green party to dismantle any efforts to build a nuclear energy ecosystem over the past several decades. Germany, unlike France, must import expensive American and Qatari LNG via supertankers due to Nordstream I and II pipeline sabotage.
American gas exports to Europe are touted by the media. Gas is cheap because America isn't the Western world's swing producer. If gas prices rise domestically in America, the plebes would demand the end of imports to avoid paying more to heat their homes.
German goods would cost much more in this scenario. German producer prices rose 46% YoY in August. The German current account is rapidly approaching zero and will soon be negative.
German PPI Change YoY
German Current Account
The reason this matters is a curious construction called TARGET2. Let’s hear from the horse’s mouth what exactly this beat is:
TARGET2 is the real-time gross settlement (RTGS) system owned and operated by the Eurosystem. Central banks and commercial banks can submit payment orders in euro to TARGET2, where they are processed and settled in central bank money, i.e. money held in an account with a central bank.
Let me explain this in plain English for those unfamiliar with economic dogma.
This chart shows intra-EU credits and debits. TARGET2. Germany, Europe's powerhouse, is owed money. IOU-buying Greeks buy G-wagons. The G-wagon pickup truck is badass.
If all EU countries had fiat currencies, the Deutsche Mark would be stronger than the Italian Lira, according to the chart above. If Europe had to buy goods from non-EU countries, the Euro would be much weaker. Credits and debits between smaller political units smooth out imbalances in other federal-provincial-state political systems. Financial and fiscal unions allow this. The EU is financial, so the centre cannot force the periphery to settle their imbalances.
Greece has never had to buy Fords or Kias instead of BMWs, but what if Germany had to shut down its auto manufacturing plants due to energy shortages?
Italians have done well buying ammonia from Germany rather than China, but what if BASF had to close its Ludwigshafen facility due to a lack of affordable natural gas?
I think you're seeing the issue.
Instead of Germany, EU countries would owe foreign producers like America, China, South Korea, Japan, etc. Since these countries aren't tied into an uneconomic union for politics, they'll demand hard fiat currency like USD instead of Euros, which have become toilet paper (or toilet plastic).
Keynesian economists have a simple solution for politicians who can't afford market prices. Government debt can maintain production. The debt covers the difference between what a business can afford and the international energy market price.
Germans are monetary policy conservative because of the Weimar Republic's hyperinflation. The Bundesbank is the only thing preventing ECB profligacy. Germany must print its way out without cheap energy. Like other nations, they will issue more bonds for fiscal transfers.
More Bunds mean lower prices. Without German monetary discipline, the Euro would have become a trash currency like any other emerging market that imports energy and food and has uncompetitive labor.
Bunds price all EU country bonds. The ECB's money printing is designed to keep the spread of weak EU member bonds vs. Bunds low. Everyone falls with Bunds.
Like the UK, German politicians seeking re-election will likely cause a Bunds selloff. Bond investors will understandably reject their promises of goodies for industry and individuals to offset the lack of cheap Russian gas. Long-dated Bunds will be smoked like UK Gilts. The ECB will face a wave of ultra-levered financial players who will go bankrupt if they mark to market their fixed income derivatives books at higher Bund yields.
Some treats People: Germany will spend 200B to help consumers and businesses cope with energy prices, including promoting renewable energy.
That, ladies and germs, is why the ECB will immediately abandon QT, move to a stop-gap QE program to normalize the Bund and every other EU bond market, and eventually graduate to YCC as the market vomits bonds of all stripes into Christine Lagarde's loving hands. She probably has soft hands.
The 30-year Bund market has noticed Germany's economic collapse. 2021 yields skyrocketed.
30-year Bund Yield
ECB Says the Darndest Things:
Because inflation is too high and likely to stay above our target for a long time, we took today's decision and expect to raise interest rates further.- Christine Lagarde, ECB Press Conference, Sept 8.
The Governing Council will adjust all of its instruments to stabilize inflation at 2% over the medium term. July 21 ECB Monetary Decision
Everyone struggles with high inflation. The Governing Council will ensure medium-term inflation returns to two percent. June 9th ECB Press Conference
I'm excited to read the after. Like the BOE, the ECB may abandon their plans to shrink their balance sheet and resume QE due to debt market dysfunction.
I like YCC like dark chocolate over 80%. ;).
Can 80% of the world's major central banks' QE and/or YCC overcome Sir Powell's toughness on fungible risky asset prices?
Gold and crypto are fungible global risky assets. Satoshis and gold bars are the same in New York, London, Frankfurt, Tokyo, and Shanghai.
As more Euros, Yen, Renminbi, and Pounds are printed, people will move their savings into Dollars or other stores of value. As the Fed raises rates and reduces its balance sheet, the USD will strengthen. Gold/EUR and BTC/JPY may also attract buyers.
Gold and crypto markets are much smaller than the trillions in fiat money that will be printed, so they will appreciate in non-USD currencies. These flows only matter in one instance because we trade the global or USD price. Arbitrage occurs when BTC/EUR rises faster than EUR/USD. Here is how it works:
An investor based in the USD notices that BTC is expensive in EUR terms.
Instead of buying BTC, this investor borrows USD and then sells it.
After that, they sell BTC and buy EUR.
Then they choose to sell EUR and buy USD.
The investor receives their profit after repaying the USD loan.
This triangular FX arbitrage will align the global/USD BTC price with the elevated EUR, JPY, CNY, and GBP prices.
Even if the Fed continues QT, which I doubt they can do past early 2023, small stores of value like gold and Bitcoin may rise as non-Fed central banks get serious about printing money.
“Arthur, this is just more copium,” you might retort.
Patience. This takes time. Economic and political forcing functions take time. The BOE example shows that bond markets will reject politicians' policies to appease voters. Decades of bad energy policy have no immediate fix. Money printing is the only politically viable option. Bond yields will rise as bond markets see more stimulative budgets, and the over-leveraged fiat debt-based financial system will collapse quickly, followed by a monetary bailout.
America has enough food, fuel, and people. China, Europe, Japan, and the UK suffer. America can be autonomous. Thus, the Fed can prioritize domestic political inflation concerns over supplying the world (and most of its allies) with dollars. A steady flow of dollars allows other nations to print their currencies and buy energy in USD. If the strongest player wins, everyone else loses.
I'm making a GDP-weighted index of these five central banks' money printing. When ready, I'll share its rate of change. This will show when the 80%'s money printing exceeds the Fed's tightening.
Sofien Kaabar, CFA
1 year ago
How to Make a Trading Heatmap
Python Heatmap Technical Indicator
Heatmaps provide an instant overview. They can be used with correlations or to predict reactions or confirm the trend in trading. This article covers RSI heatmap creation.
The Market System
Bullish trend: The market tends to make higher highs, which indicates that the overall trend is upward.
Sideways: The market tends to fluctuate while staying within predetermined zones.
Bearish trend: The market has the propensity to make lower lows, indicating that the overall trend is downward.
Most tools detect the trend, but we cannot predict the next state. The best way to solve this problem is to assume the current state will continue and trade any reactions, preferably in the trend.
If the EURUSD is above its moving average and making higher highs, a trend-following strategy would be to wait for dips before buying and assuming the bullish trend will continue.
Indicator of Relative Strength
J. Welles Wilder Jr. introduced the RSI, a popular and versatile technical indicator. Used as a contrarian indicator to exploit extreme reactions. Calculating the default RSI usually involves these steps:
Determine the difference between the closing prices from the prior ones.
Distinguish between the positive and negative net changes.
Create a smoothed moving average for both the absolute values of the positive net changes and the negative net changes.
Take the difference between the smoothed positive and negative changes. The Relative Strength RS will be the name we use to describe this calculation.
To obtain the RSI, use the normalization formula shown below for each time step.
The 13-period RSI and black GBPUSD hourly values are shown above. RSI bounces near 25 and pauses around 75. Python requires a four-column OHLC array for RSI coding.
import numpy as np def add_column(data, times): for i in range(1, times + 1): new = np.zeros((len(data), 1), dtype = float) data = np.append(data, new, axis = 1) return data def delete_column(data, index, times): for i in range(1, times + 1): data = np.delete(data, index, axis = 1) return data def delete_row(data, number): data = data[number:, ] return data def ma(data, lookback, close, position): data = add_column(data, 1) for i in range(len(data)): try: data[i, position] = (data[i - lookback + 1:i + 1, close].mean()) except IndexError: pass data = delete_row(data, lookback) return data def smoothed_ma(data, alpha, lookback, close, position): lookback = (2 * lookback) - 1 alpha = alpha / (lookback + 1.0) beta = 1 - alpha data = ma(data, lookback, close, position) data[lookback + 1, position] = (data[lookback + 1, close] * alpha) + (data[lookback, position] * beta) for i in range(lookback + 2, len(data)): try: data[i, position] = (data[i, close] * alpha) + (data[i - 1, position] * beta) except IndexError: pass return data def rsi(data, lookback, close, position): data = add_column(data, 5) for i in range(len(data)): data[i, position] = data[i, close] - data[i - 1, close] for i in range(len(data)): if data[i, position] > 0: data[i, position + 1] = data[i, position] elif data[i, position] < 0: data[i, position + 2] = abs(data[i, position]) data = smoothed_ma(data, 2, lookback, position + 1, position + 3) data = smoothed_ma(data, 2, lookback, position + 2, position + 4) data[:, position + 5] = data[:, position + 3] / data[:, position + 4] data[:, position + 6] = (100 - (100 / (1 + data[:, position + 5]))) data = delete_column(data, position, 6) data = delete_row(data, lookback) return data
Make sure to focus on the concepts and not the code. You can find the codes of most of my strategies in my books. The most important thing is to comprehend the techniques and strategies.
My weekly market sentiment report uses complex and simple models to understand the current positioning and predict the future direction of several major markets. Check out the report here:
Using the Heatmap to Find the Trend
RSI trend detection is easy but useless. Bullish and bearish regimes are in effect when the RSI is above or below 50, respectively. Tracing a vertical colored line creates the conditions below. How:
When the RSI is higher than 50, a green vertical line is drawn.
When the RSI is lower than 50, a red vertical line is drawn.
Zooming out yields a basic heatmap, as shown below.
def indicator_plot(data, second_panel, window = 250): fig, ax = plt.subplots(2, figsize = (10, 5)) sample = data[-window:, ] for i in range(len(sample)): ax.vlines(x = i, ymin = sample[i, 2], ymax = sample[i, 1], color = 'black', linewidth = 1) if sample[i, 3] > sample[i, 0]: ax.vlines(x = i, ymin = sample[i, 0], ymax = sample[i, 3], color = 'black', linewidth = 1.5) if sample[i, 3] < sample[i, 0]: ax.vlines(x = i, ymin = sample[i, 3], ymax = sample[i, 0], color = 'black', linewidth = 1.5) if sample[i, 3] == sample[i, 0]: ax.vlines(x = i, ymin = sample[i, 3], ymax = sample[i, 0], color = 'black', linewidth = 1.5) ax.grid() for i in range(len(sample)): if sample[i, second_panel] > 50: ax.vlines(x = i, ymin = 0, ymax = 100, color = 'green', linewidth = 1.5) if sample[i, second_panel] < 50: ax.vlines(x = i, ymin = 0, ymax = 100, color = 'red', linewidth = 1.5) ax.grid() indicator_plot(my_data, 4, window = 500)
Call RSI on your OHLC array's fifth column. 4. Adjusting lookback parameters reduces lag and false signals. Other indicators and conditions are possible.
Another suggestion is to develop an RSI Heatmap for Extreme Conditions.
Contrarian indicator RSI. The following rules apply:
Whenever the RSI is approaching the upper values, the color approaches red.
The color tends toward green whenever the RSI is getting close to the lower values.
Zooming out yields a basic heatmap, as shown below.
import matplotlib.pyplot as plt def indicator_plot(data, second_panel, window = 250): fig, ax = plt.subplots(2, figsize = (10, 5)) sample = data[-window:, ] for i in range(len(sample)): ax.vlines(x = i, ymin = sample[i, 2], ymax = sample[i, 1], color = 'black', linewidth = 1) if sample[i, 3] > sample[i, 0]: ax.vlines(x = i, ymin = sample[i, 0], ymax = sample[i, 3], color = 'black', linewidth = 1.5) if sample[i, 3] < sample[i, 0]: ax.vlines(x = i, ymin = sample[i, 3], ymax = sample[i, 0], color = 'black', linewidth = 1.5) if sample[i, 3] == sample[i, 0]: ax.vlines(x = i, ymin = sample[i, 3], ymax = sample[i, 0], color = 'black', linewidth = 1.5) ax.grid() for i in range(len(sample)): if sample[i, second_panel] > 90: ax.vlines(x = i, ymin = 0, ymax = 100, color = 'red', linewidth = 1.5) if sample[i, second_panel] > 80 and sample[i, second_panel] < 90: ax.vlines(x = i, ymin = 0, ymax = 100, color = 'darkred', linewidth = 1.5) if sample[i, second_panel] > 70 and sample[i, second_panel] < 80: ax.vlines(x = i, ymin = 0, ymax = 100, color = 'maroon', linewidth = 1.5) if sample[i, second_panel] > 60 and sample[i, second_panel] < 70: ax.vlines(x = i, ymin = 0, ymax = 100, color = 'firebrick', linewidth = 1.5) if sample[i, second_panel] > 50 and sample[i, second_panel] < 60: ax.vlines(x = i, ymin = 0, ymax = 100, color = 'grey', linewidth = 1.5) if sample[i, second_panel] > 40 and sample[i, second_panel] < 50: ax.vlines(x = i, ymin = 0, ymax = 100, color = 'grey', linewidth = 1.5) if sample[i, second_panel] > 30 and sample[i, second_panel] < 40: ax.vlines(x = i, ymin = 0, ymax = 100, color = 'lightgreen', linewidth = 1.5) if sample[i, second_panel] > 20 and sample[i, second_panel] < 30: ax.vlines(x = i, ymin = 0, ymax = 100, color = 'limegreen', linewidth = 1.5) if sample[i, second_panel] > 10 and sample[i, second_panel] < 20: ax.vlines(x = i, ymin = 0, ymax = 100, color = 'seagreen', linewidth = 1.5) if sample[i, second_panel] > 0 and sample[i, second_panel] < 10: ax.vlines(x = i, ymin = 0, ymax = 100, color = 'green', linewidth = 1.5) ax.grid() indicator_plot(my_data, 4, window = 500)
Dark green and red areas indicate imminent bullish and bearish reactions, respectively. RSI around 50 is grey.
To conclude, my goal is to contribute to objective technical analysis, which promotes more transparent methods and strategies that must be back-tested before implementation.
Technical analysis will lose its reputation as subjective and unscientific.
When you find a trading strategy or technique, follow these steps:
Put emotions aside and adopt a critical mindset.
Test it in the past under conditions and simulations taken from real life.
Try optimizing it and performing a forward test if you find any potential.
Transaction costs and any slippage simulation should always be included in your tests.
Risk management and position sizing should always be considered in your tests.
After checking the above, monitor the strategy because market dynamics may change and make it unprofitable.
10 months ago
CSS Scroll-linked Animations Will Transform The Web's User Experience
We may never tap again in ten years.
I discussed styling websites and web apps on smartwatches in my earlier article on W3C standardization.
The Parallax Chronicles
Section containing examples and flying objects
Another intriguing Working Draft I found applies to all devices, including smartphones.
These pages may have something intriguing. Take your time. Return after scrolling:
What connects these three pages?
JustinWick at English Wikipedia • CC-BY-SA-3.0
Scroll-linked animation, commonly called parallax, is the effect.
WordPress theme developers' quick setup and low-code tools made the effect popular around 2014.
Parallax: Why Designers Love It
The chapter that your designer shouldn't read
Online video playback required searching, scrolling, and clicking ten years ago. Scroll and click four years ago.
Some video sites let you swipe to autoplay the next video from an endless list.
UI designers create scrollable pages and apps to accommodate the behavioral change.
Web interactivity used to be mouse-based. Clicking a button opened a help drawer, and hovering animated it.
However, a large page with more material requires fewer buttons and less interactiveness.
Designers choose scroll-based effects. Design and frontend developers must fight the trend but prepare for the worst.
How to Create Parallax
The component that you might want to show the designer
Using it needs a lot of human mathematical and physical computations.
Your asset library must also be prepared to display your website on a laptop, television, smartphone, tablet, foldable smartphone, and possibly even a microwave.
Overall, scroll-based animations can be solved better.
CSS Scroll-linked Animations
CSS makes sense since it's presentational. A Working Draft has been laying the groundwork for the next generation of interactiveness.
The new CSS property scroll-timeline powers the feature, which MDN describes well.
Before testing it, you should realize it is poorly supported:
Firefox 103 currently supports it.
Web design was a protracted process. Started with pages with static backdrop images and scrollable text. Artists and designers may use the scroll-based animation CSS API to completely revamp our web experience.
It's a promising frontier. This post may attract a future scrollable web designer.