Trading lessons from the FIFA World Cup 2018

While research, knowledge, and experience are the key aspects to beating the markets, a wiser trader also has a ‘gameplan’ for times of uncertainty. This prudence can go a long way in helping a trader in times of unpredictability and unreliability.

Jul 07, 2018 12:07 IST India Infoline News Service

Before their shock defeat, and subsequent exit, at the hands (read: legs) of Belgium, Goldman Sachs had used a combination of algos and big data to predict that Brazil would win the 2018 edition of the FIFA World Cup. Interestingly, that is what they had predicted in 2014 too!

Perhaps, approaching one of the many animal clairvoyants would have given them a better outcome. What we’re trying to say here is that no one can forecast what is going to happen on Match Day; the ‘goats’ could lose their form, and the underdogs might just become the stars of the evening.


The same can be said for the share markets as well. Not even Warren Buffett, aka the Oracle of Omaha, can predict what is going to happen in the markets the next day. Sure, given his experience and wisdom of the financial world, he could anticipate it and prepare for it. However, everything is a big question mark until the ball gets rolling, i.e. with the sound of the opening bell.

Hence, while research, knowledge, and experience are the key aspects to beating the markets, a wiser trader also has a ‘gameplan’ for times of uncertainty. This prudence can go a long way in helping a trader in unpredictable situations.
Here’s our lesson on how the FIFA World Cup 2018 could help you become a more prudent trader.



The Russian lesson – On familiar grounds, just make the most of it

Russia is the official host of this event and its team is having a dream run. After thrashing Saudi Arabia (5-0) and Egypt (3-1), Russia managed to pip Spain and make it to the quarter-finals. How much further they will go is hard to say, but as of now, they are making the best of it. Russia has taken full advantage of the familiar conditions, tested grounds, and crowd support so far, and this is exactly how you should trade.

Occasionally, you get these situations, where everything is going your way. Your calls are right, your trades are bang on target, and your risks are working out perfectly. The message is to just go out and make the best of the situation because rarely everything will work in your favor. The onus is on you to ‘make hay’ at these times.

The Argentine lesson – Great stars in a mediocre team become mediocre

Argentina played twice and made a mess on both occasions. On the first occasion, they drew with Iceland, which was bad. In the next match, they were trounced 3-0 by Croatia, which was almost unacceptable to most. At the risk of blaming someone, maybe the problem with Argentina was their overt dependence on the star value of Lionel Messi. With him, they had a lifeline, but they should have played their cards well. That is how it is in trading and investing too.

You could buy a few super stocks and feel smug about it. Alternatively, you would make a few good trades and let the winnings get to your head. Remember, do not bank on a strategy or stock too much just because it worked for you before without having countermeasures in place. Balance is the key to achieving success in your trading career.

The Brazilian lesson – A few moments can make a big difference

For hardcore Brazilian fans, the match with Costa Rica must have been an unnerving one to watch. Even after 90 minutes, the two teams were locked 0-0. It was only in the stoppage time that Coutinho managed to break through Costa Rica’s defense. Not to be left behind, Neymar fired a beast of a kick to make it 2-0. Within a span of three minutes, Brazil showed what it was made of.

A similar scenario occurs during trading as well. You can make the most money you ever have in a matter of minutes, or you could lose all your hard-earned money within the blink of an eye. Always watch out for these critical moments and be prepared for them. If you’re taking up multiple positions, then remember to hedge your risk, or if you’re taking up a risky trade, then ensure you have a stop loss in place. How you play these moments will determine your trading success.

The Swiss lesson – You can always bounce back from any situation

The match between Switzerland and Serbia was a good example of Swiss resilience. Despite Serbia taking the lead early on, the Swiss team not only managed to score the equalizer but also added one more goal to up the ante before going on to win the match.

Winning doesn’t look easy when you’re behind. There might be bad days where all your trades seem to go wrong. This is where resilience comes in. Believe in your trading approach, and above all, yourself, and bouncing back will not be a problem for you.

The Eternal lesson - Don’t be intimidated by the Goliaths

This World Cup has seen a lot of underdogs slay their opponents. Mexico beat 2014 champions Germany 1-0, while Croatia thrashed Argentina 3-0. Both Germany and Argentina were the finalists of FIFA 2014. For that matter, reigning champion Spain was trounced 5-1 by the Netherlands in their very first match of the next Cup.

Simply put, your own beliefs should matter more than anything else. Don’t let your trading be driven by the views of experts, the warnings of big traders, or momentary success. As long as your gameplan is in place, you need not get intimated.

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