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Trade Like a Casino: Find Your Edge, Manage Risk, and Win Like the House Hardcover – October 4, 2011

4.4 out of 5 stars 18 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From the Inside Flap

While trading is a difficult endeavor, it's still possible to make money doing so in today's markets. The real question is: how can you achieve this goal?

What is required is adapting a successful existing business model to this speculative arena. The model that makes most sense is the "casino paradigm" and nobody understands it better than author Richard Weissman—a professional trader with over fifteen years of experience consulting and training traders and risk managers.

And now, with Trade Like a Casino, he reveals how successful traders tend to operate like a casino in that they develop a method that gives them "positive expectancy" and then unflappably implement their approach in the face of changing, and oftentimes volatile, market conditions. Page by page, this reliable resource explores the intricacies of methodology, mental control, and flexibility that allow traders to develop and maintain a casino-like edge. It also addresses some of the more complex issues that surround this model of successful speculative trading.

Divided into three comprehensive parts, Trade Like a Casino skillfully:

  • Introduces the casino paradigm of trading with respect to the development of positive expectancy models, price risk management, and trader discipline

  • Reveals the best-kept secret in trading, the cyclical nature of volatility, and offers insights on the tools needed to measure it

  • Discusses the importance of timeframe analysis and one of the most important tools associated with it—time frame divergence

  • Highlights a wide array of positive expectancy trend-following and mean reversion trading models

  • Covers common trading pitfalls and how to transcend them as well as a wide variety of techniques for analyzing and improving trader performance

  • Examines the psychological mindset required to succeed with a positive expectancy model

Successful traders don't need luck, since they consistently play the probabilities and manage risk. That's how casinos win, and with this book as your guide, that's how you'll learn to win in today's dynamic markets.

From the Back Cover

Praise for Trade Like a Casino

"The good news is, you can trade for a living; the bad news—not everyone can do it. Richard Weissman provides technical and psychological tools to help you move into the winning group."— Dr. Alexander Elder author, Trading for a Living

"Discipline, risk, and psychology...to fully understand these concepts is to fully understand your trading potential. This indispensable book is a must-read for traders, from the aspiring to the professional."— Douglas Janson System Design Support Specialist and Trader, CQG, Inc.

"I highly recommend this book to anyone considering a career in trading. It was a fun read while providing insight on how to gain an edge toward being a successful trader!"— Jabree Brooks, Associate Oil Controller

"Richard Weissman does it again. Like no one else, he pinpoints key aspects of a trader's day-to-day thinking and activities, expanding on basic yet crucial principles like patience and discipline. His analysis is backed by extensive hands-on experience trading in numerous markets. Richard goes the extra mile giving both aspiring and well-seasoned traders precise tips and methodologies to keep their minds focused, alert and their eyes on the ball."— Frederic Bettan CEO, Managing Partner, Swing Capital Inc.

"This book gives you all you need. Richard Weissman brilliantly navigates through the various aspects of risk management to help the reader create and mend a speculative discipline."—James Shelton Chief Currency and Commodity Analyst, A-Live Quotes Inc.


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 270 pages
  • Publisher: Wiley; 1 edition (October 4, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0470933097
  • ISBN-13: 978-0470933091
  • Product Dimensions: 6.3 x 1 x 9.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #439,376 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Richard L. Weissman is a professional trader with over twenty five years' experience. He has provided private consultations and training to traders and risk managers for twenty years. He currently serves as a Senior Associate with the Energy Management Institute (www.emi.org), where he teaches trading and risk courses, which are co-sponsored by CME Group and the IntercontinentalExchange. In addition, he is editor-in-chief of Weissman Signals Inc. (www.weissmansignals.com), a newsletter covering the futures, cash foreign exchange and ETF markets. Weissman's first book, Mechanical Trading Systems: Pairing Trader Psychology with Technical Analysis, was published by John Wiley & Sons in 2004. His second book, Trade Like a Casino: Find Your Edge, Manage Risk and Win Like the House, was selected as a Finalist for the Technical Analyst 2012 Book of the Year Award.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I liked the message of this book, casinos win because they have a positive expectancy model in their table games and they control risk by establishing table limits. Traders can do the same. Its a great analogy but its a little too common sense to really warrant the price tag...as is the case with most trading texts.

I read the first couple of chapters and was quite optimistic, but then it ended with a wimper covering the usual topics of trading discipline, risk methodologies, system basics, the cyclical nature of volatility(some think this subject was revolutionary, not me). For someone that has never seen any of these topics, it could be beneficial, but I wouldn't call it a seminal work on any of these points.

Amazon doesn't have the table of contents listed, but Wiley's site does. Check it out to get a better feel of some of the topics covered. But note the page length of each topic and understand there are many charts. Point being their isn't a lot of depth IMO.

This is not a bad book, in fact it is well written and some may love its message applied to their own trading methods and mindset. For me it was a little disappointing and isn't a book I would place on my shelf and reference frequently for application or entertainment.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
In gambling there are really only two sides, the gambler and the casino. The gambler has the long term odds stacked against them. The casino has the odds on their side in the long term. The more the gambler gambles the more the odds shift to the casinos favor and they eventually will take all the gamblers money.

This book is about the casino paradigm as it relates to trading. The majority of Rich Traders operate like casinos. They trade with back tested proven trading systems that put the odds on their side. They risk small amounts of equity per trade like 1% to 2% of their accounts, so one trade alone really doesn't matter. While New Traders act more like gamblers with no real advantage and just plunging large bets on stocks so haphazardly that they just have a 50-50 shot like a roulette wheel on red or black. Many times the New Trader like the gambler has even worst odds by buying into the market in a downtrend and shorting into a rally just believing that they can pick the bottom or top.

This book is about becoming the casino through the removal of emotions from any one trading outcome, risk management, and a positive expectancy model, which are the basis to any trader winning in the long term.

We should control our risk just like casinos set table limits to not expose themselves to the risk of ruin.

We must have the discipline to stick unwaveringly to positive expectancy models and risk management, casinos do not get upset and change their rules trying to win back money from a gambler and neither should we.

Luck is what gamblers hope for. Casino operators consistently play the probabilities and manage risk.

Trade the market not the money.
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Format: Hardcover
This book has everything needed to succeed as a professional trader - profitable trading methods (I particularly liked the chapters on timeframe divergence techniques and the cyclical nature of volatility), comprehensive risk management tools like the risk management pyramid, and the most comprehensive examination of tools to instill trading discipline I've ever read (this section absolutely blew me away ---- the author presents you with a detailed outline for a journal that really forced me to analyze my trading decisions and, more importantly to eradicate irrational ways of behaving in the markets).

Despite being a professional with over twenty-five years experience this book allowed me to think about markets in new ways and has enhanced overall performance (especially the chapter on minimizing trader regret).

Stated simply... buy it.
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Format: Hardcover
You can't judge a book by its cover but in this case, the author Ron Weissman sums up his writing style, book structure, and clarity of thought with the "get right to the point" title "Trade Like a Casino". I will admit that as a fairly new trader of two years part-time, the first time I reviewed the book, the concepts certainly had meaning to me, but even more so upon returning to the book after having had some real trading experience under my belt. I enjoyed Ron's style of writing as it was very organized with each section getting right to the point with excellent examples in the form of charts, and tables of trade system metrics. I would suggest that this book would have value to the trader starting out in his/her career as it helps develop an understanding and organization of trading, markets, and systems approaches to probabilistic events and outcomes. To distill it down, here are my pro's and con's list for this book.
(1) Very organized and to the point sections and chapters
(2) Abundant original thoughts and ideas in this book from an author who is clearly a veteran and shares his own personal quips, sayings, and adages. Not just recycled material from other texts
(3) Clear examples illustrating his points by use of sample basic mechanical systems, thereby giving the reader an example of mechanical approaches to trading.
(4) Very unique chapter addressing trader psychology by giving specific examples of ways to deal with emotional obstacles. Ron calls these "regret minimization techniques" and rather than be vague about them, he gives the reader some basic sample techniques and explanations.
(5) The author's greatest strength I believe is is creativity in generating trading approaches that most people would easily overlook.
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