Macro Ops Podcast: Alex, Tyler, Chris and Mr. B talk Macro Intelligence Report, Global Macro in the 90’s, Value, Systems Trading, Volatility, and Wealth

Chris hosts an epic 2.5+ hour Macro Ops roundtable with Alex Barrow, Tyler Kling and Mr. B.

Mr. B gets a call sign update to Mr. Bean…though that did not go as well as he had hoped.  

This is a monster podcast, unedited, long form, plug in and go deep with us.

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We start off right away with Alex talking about this month’s Macro Intelligence Report. He explains how a monster rally has left everyone in the rearview mirror and now people are starting to FOMO into the market after a nearly 20% rally from the December 26th lows.

We dig into Alex’s thinking at the end of 2018 of why the equity indexes had bottomed and what sentiment indicators he was looking at to feel confident. When everyone else was bearish it was interesting to see the reaction from fellow market participants after he posted a snipped of his report to Real Vision.

After this discussion we hit the following topics:

  • Bottoms, what are some reliable, repeatable bottom finding (not top selling) setups
  • Cash was the highest returning asset in 2018
  • Value investing with Mr. B.
  • Garret Motion $GTX up 60% since the market lows
  • Construction Partners $ROAD up 40% since the market lows
  • Differences between retail investors and institutional managers, retail DOES NOT HAVE TO BE STYLISTIC
  • Alex’s long term macro calls
    • Dollar
    • Rising interest rate regime
    • Equity volatility
    • 1960’s and 1970’s volatility
  • Venezuela, on the doorsteps of war?
  • Howard Marks latest note and anti-capitalism — You can find his note here
  • Alex, a political scientist, goes into some depth on capitalism
  • The craziness of 5:1 leverage to purchase a home…and a flashback to the 1990’s at 16% interest rates for home mortgages
  • Managing risk
  • Highlights of being a full time systems trader and nomad
  • Warren Buffett

After this barrage, Alex turns the tables on Chris and we learn a bit of his time before and during the military and where he got into systems trading. As a Marine he had visited Thailand and Indonesia during their debt crisis, and saw the effects of Russia defaulting on their currency as well as Pakistan and India getting nukes. He had a front row seat for some of the biggest events in global macro during the late 1990’s.

Barrage number two includes

  • Key requirements of a trading system
  • Buffett and Munger discussion
  • Humility, realizing that you suck but continuously learning from mistakes
  • Getting comfortable being uncomfortable, truly analyzing what you are doing wrong and getting better over time
  • Constant improvement
  • Ice baths, extreme heat, building mental toughness and resolve
  • Paper trading, backtesting, and getting experience
  • Trading and professional athletics
  • Systems position sizing
  • Macro and value position sizing
  • Catching the 3rd-7th innings and leave the 1st and 9th innings for the real heros
  • Warren Buffett and Charlie Munger…again
  • Tyler asks, would you switch places with Warren Buffett at 88 with all his wealth, or stay yourself? You know the answer.
  • Finding edges where people aren’t looking
  • The edge of not having a “style” to approach the market. Your account does not care if you are a value investor, global macro, momentum or any other style of investor
  • And we end with a biology break

Get in touch with us at:

Alex@macro-ops.com and @macroops on Twitter

Tyler Tyler@macro-ops.com @tylerhklng on Twitter

Chris chris@macro-ops.com @chrisdmacro on Twitter and Instagram

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Brandon Beylo

Value Investor

Brandon has been a professional investor focusing on value for over 13 years, spending his time in small to micro-cap companies, spin-offs, SPACs, and deep value liquidation situations. Over time, he’s developed a deeper understanding for what deep-value investing actually means, and refined his philosophy to include any business trading at a wild discount to what he thinks its worth in 3-5 years.

Brandon has a tenacious passion for investing, broad-based learning, and business. He previously worked for several leading investment firms before joining the team at Macro Ops. He lives by the famous Munger mantra of trying to get a little smarter each day.

AK

Investing & Personal Finance

AK is the founder of Macro Ops and the host of Fallible.

He started out in corporate economics for a Fortune 50 company before moving to a long/short equity investment firm.

With Macro Ops focused primarily on institutional clients, AK moved to servicing new investors just starting their journey. He takes the professional research and education produced at Macro Ops and breaks it down for beginners. The goal is to help clients find the best solution for their investing needs through effective education.

Tyler Kling

Volatility & Options Trader

Former trade desk manager at $100+ million family office where he oversaw multiple traders and helped develop cutting edge quantitative strategies in the derivatives market.

He worked as a consultant to the family office’s in-house fund of funds in the areas of portfolio manager evaluation and capital allocation.

Certified in Quantitative Finance from the Fitch Learning Center in London, England where he studied under famous quants such as Paul Wilmott.

Alex Barrow

Macro Trader

Founder and head macro trader at Macro Ops. Alex joined the US Marine Corps on his 18th birthday just one month after the 9/11 terrorist attacks. He subsequently spent a decade in the military. Serving in various capacities from scout sniper to interrogator and counterintelligence specialist. Following his military service, he worked as a contract intelligence professional for a number of US agencies (from the DIA to FBI) with a focus on counterintelligence and terrorist financing. He also spent time consulting for a tech company that specialized in building analytic software for finance and intelligence analysis.

After leaving the field of intelligence he went to work at a global macro hedge fund. He’s been professionally involved in markets since 2005, has consulted with a number of the leading names in the hedge fund space, and now manages his own family office while running Macro Ops. He’s published over 300 white papers on complex financial and macroeconomic topics, writes regularly about investment/market trends, and frequently speaks at conferences on trading and investing.

Macro Ops is a market research firm geared toward professional and experienced retail traders and investors. Macro Ops’ research has been featured in Forbes, Marketwatch, Business Insider, and Real Vision as well as a number of other leading publications.

You can find out more about Alex on his LinkedIn account here and also find him on Twitter where he frequently shares his market research.