It’s time to step back and poke fun at our industry – again. Here is an uabbreviated/u list of funnies posted to a chat room I frequent by a friend over at Thomson Reuters who I am sure does not want his name associated with it in a public forum such as a blog. The Devil’s Dictionary, as the full list was called, was originally published by Ambrose Bierce, supposedly the forgotten “brother” of Mark /br /p class=”MsoNormal”bAnalyst recommendations/b: –br /Strong Buy – Buybr /Buy – Holdbr /Hold – Sellbr /Sell – It’s too late./p p class=”MsoNormal” /pp class=”MsoNormal”bBack–testing/b: – the art of adjusting trading system parameters so as to ensure maximum profit in the past and zero profit in the future./p p class=”MsoNormal” /pp class=”MsoNormal”bCharting/b: – “join-the-dots” for adults./p p class=”MsoNormal”!–[if !supportEmptyParas]– !–[endif]–o:p/o:p/p p class=”MsoNormal”bComputerized system testing/b: – torturing the data until it confesses. See: back-testing/p p class=”MsoNormal”!–[if !supportEmptyParas]– !–[endif]–o:p/o:p/p p class=”MsoNormal”bCycle analysis/b: – a method of analysis that allows losing trades to be organised into regular patterns./p p class=”MsoNormal”!–[if !supportEmptyParas]– !–[endif]–o:p/o:p/p p class=”MsoNormal”bDerivatives/b: – securities that are identified by acronyms – CHIPS, COBRAS, LEAPS, PERQS, STEERS, TRIPS, ZEPOS – all of these things are derivatives. Unfortunately, little else is known about them./p p class=”MsoNormal”!–[if !supportEmptyParas]– !–[endif]–o:p/o:p/p p class=”MsoNormal”bDaytrading/b: – an activity that takes place in between meaningful periods of employment./p p class=”MsoNormal”b!–[if !supportEmptyParas]– !–[endif]–o:p/o:p/b/p p class=”MsoNormal”bEurodollars/b: – U.S. Dollars, of course./p p class=”MsoNormal”!–[if !supportEmptyParas]– !–[endif]–o:p/o:p/p p class=”MsoNormal”bFalse Break/b: – an actual break of a trendline that triggers a losing trade. False breaks confirm the usefulness of trendline analysis. Only those breaks that are false cause problems, and those breaks don’t count, because they are false./p p class=”MsoNormal”!–[if !supportEmptyParas]– !–[endif]–o:p/o:p/p p class=”MsoNormal”bFloat (initial public offering): /b- stock that is offered to you because other people have turned it down. The guiding principle in relation to floats is as follows: “never participate in a float that you are able to participate in.” o:p/o:p/p p class=”MsoNormal”b!–[if !supportEmptyParas]– !–[endif]–o:p/o:p/b/p p class=”MsoNormal”bFundmental analysis: /b– a method of analysis that provides compelling reasons for why a stock shouldn’t fall in price when it does./p p class=”MsoNormal”!–[if !supportEmptyParas]– !–[endif]–o:p/o:p/p p class=”MsoNormal”b“Fundamentally sound”:/b – the condition in which an economy finds itself immediately after a stock market collapse./p p class=”MsoNormal”!–[if !supportEmptyParas]– !–[endif]–o:p/o:p/p p class=”MsoNormal”bIn-house analyst/b: – an employee of a broking house who dresses mutton up as lamb and advertises it on special./p p class=”MsoNormal”!–[if !supportEmptyParas]– !–[endif]–o:p/o:p/p p class=”MsoNormal”bInstitutional investor/b: – someone who dumps a stock big-time, a day or two after you’ve bought it, for no apparent reason./p p class=”MsoNormal”!–[if !supportEmptyParas]– !–[endif]–o:p/o:p/p p class=”MsoNormal”bLive feed/b: – a technology that enables the instant incorporation of bad ticks into a charting program./p p class=”MsoNormal”b!–[if !supportEmptyParas]– !–[endif]–o:p/o:p/b/p p class=”MsoNormal”bMarket report/b: – a concise explanation of why a market traded up or down. 99% of market reports are drawn from other market reports. The remainder are whimsical. /p p class=”MsoNormal”!–[if !supportEmptyParas]– !–[endif]–o:p/o:p/p p class=”MsoNormal”bMoney-management/b: – the art of hiding trading losses from a spouse./p p class=”MsoNormal”!–[if !supportEmptyParas]– !–[endif]–o:p/o:p/p p class=”MsoNormal”bOver-bought/b: – a market is considered to be in an over-bought condition when everyone else appears to have bought it, but you haven’t./p p class=”MsoNormal”!–[if !supportEmptyParas]– !–[endif]–o:p/o:p/p p class=”MsoNormal”bPosition trade/b: – a short-term trade that is in deficit, and will be closed out as soon as it breaks even, however long that takes. o:p/o:p/p p class=”MsoNormal”b!–[if !supportEmptyParas]– !–[endif]–o:p/o:p/b/p p class=”MsoNormal”bPrice/Earnings Ratio/b: – a ratio that indicates whether the price of a stock is attractive in relation to last year’s earnings. A low number indicates a bargain. However a low number can also indicate a lemon. If a company starts going down the tube, its stock price will appear very attractive in relation to last year’s earnings. The P/E Ratio is a versatile indicator.o:p/o:p/p p class=”MsoNormal”b!–[if !supportEmptyParas]– !–[endif]–o:p/o:p/b/p p class=”MsoNormal”bSeasonal analysis/b: – the assumption that other people who trade Heating Oil Futures know nothing about winter.o:p/o:p/p p class=”MsoNormal”b!–[if !supportEmptyParas]– !–[endif]–o:p/o:p/b/p p class=”MsoNormal”bStochastics/b: – a technical indicator so-named because the name sounds technical.o:p/o:p/p p class=”MsoNormal”b!–[if !supportEmptyParas]– !–[endif]–o:p/o:p/b/p p class=”MsoNormal”bStop-loss/b: – the trader’s equivalent of a condom. It’s something you know you should have used after it’s too late.o:p/o:p/p p class=”MsoNormal”b!–[if !supportEmptyParas]– !–[endif]–o:p/o:p/b/p p class=”MsoNormal”bSupport/b: – a line drawn on a chart, the breaking of which is deemed extremely significant, even if the only people trading the stock at the time are two of three ladies at the tennis club.o:p/o:p/p p class=”MsoNormal”b!–[if !supportEmptyParas]– !–[endif]–o:p/o:p/b/p p class=”MsoNormal”bSupport/Resistance/b: – supposed allies that flee at the first sign of trouble.o:p/o:p/p p class=”MsoNormal”b!–[if !supportEmptyParas]– !–[endif]–o:p/o:p/b/p p class=”MsoNormal”bTankan Index/b: – a closely watched figure, that measures the extent to which the Japanese economy is tanking.o:p/o:p/p p class=”MsoNormal”b!–[if !supportEmptyParas]– !–[endif]–o:p/o:p/b/p p class=”MsoNormal”bTechnical analysis/b: – subjective analysis of the markets dressed up in a lab coat.o:p/o:p/p p class=”MsoNormal”b!–[if !supportEmptyParas]– !–[endif]–o:p/o:p/b/p p class=”MsoNormal”bTechnical indicator/b: – a transformation of a price series that contains less information than the series itself. Different technical indicators throw away information in different ways.o:p/o:p/p p class=”MsoNormal”span style=”” /spano:p/o:p/p p class=”MsoNormal”bThey/b: – the members of a powerful international conspiracy who target small, private traders in order to make their lives miserable. For instance, “they ran the market to my stop and then turned it around.”/p p class=”MsoNormal”!–[if !supportEmptyParas]– !–[endif]–o:p/o:p/p p class=”MsoNormal”bTrading floor/b: – the traditional venue for the negotiation of securities, now made redundant by screen trading. Trading floors that remain open serve a valuable purpose as colorful backdrops to market reports on television. /p p class=”MsoNormal”!–[if !supportEmptyParas]– !–[endif]–o:p/o:p/p p class=”MsoNormal”bTrading genius/b: – a reckless spirit in a bull market.o:p/o:p/p p class=”MsoNormal”b!–[if !supportEmptyParas]– !–[endif]–o:p/o:p/b/p p class=”MsoNormal”bTrendline analysis/b: – a form of analysis that works best on a computer screen, where lines can be erased and re-drawn without trace./p p class=”MsoNormal”!–[if !supportEmptyParas]– !–[endif]–o:p/o:p/p p class=”MsoNormal”bZero-sum game/b: – a game in which the players slug it out and the broker wins.o:p/o:p/p