Sunday, October 01, 2006

From SFO Mag:

Blogs rule!!!


What to Look For in a BlogThe ease with which blogs can be published has also meant that there are many poor-quality blogs out there. Here are some of the features that distinguish the valuable blogs from the filler:• Frequent updating – A blog is both a journal entry and a participation in a community. The most valuable blogs, on average, will be those that stay on top of the markets and post actively. As a result, such blogs build up large archives of timely and useful market information. • Unique content – The best blogs offer perspectives on the market that cannot be found elsewhere. This can be achieved in many ways. The Big Picture blog, offered by Barry Ritholtz (http://bigpicture.typepad.com), draws upon his distinctive perspectives as a money manager. John Mauldin’s popular blog, Thoughts From the Frontline(www.frontlinethoughts.com), offers in-depth analyses of trends in the economy and the markets. Adam Warner’s Daily Options Report blog (http://adamsoptions.blogspot.com) covers markets and indicators not often on traders’ radar. The excellent CXO Advisory blog (http://www.cxoadvisory.com/blog), my own TraderFeed blog(www.traderfeed.blogspot.com) and the Ticker Sense site (http://tickersense.typepad.com) offer original market research. • Actionable content – The content of the best blogs is practical, useable information that day traders can apply immediately. There are several excellent stock-picking blogs, including Trader Mike’s watchlists (www.tradermike.net), Declan Fallond’s Stock Picks (http://blog.fallondpicks.com), and Jon Tait’s Fickle Trader (www.fickletrader.blogspot.com). The Alpha Trends blog (http://themoneyblogs.tradingmarkets.com/alphatrends) utilizes video to capture the technical condition of the market; Jim Wyckoff’s blog (http://www.traderblog.com) summarizes developments across markets and their implications. My trading psychology weblog (www.brettsteenbarger.com/weblog.htm) covers unique market indicators each day to give day traders a sense for whether markets are strengthening or weakening.• Useful links – Few blog writers are as creative in finding interesting and useful market material across the web as Charles Kirk (www.thekirkreport.com). I find the links posted by the Abnormal Returns site (http://abnormalreturns.wordpress.com) to be of particularly high quality. The Big Picture (http://bigpicture.typepad.com) not only links to interesting features, but typically comments on them at length. I find these links to be important stimuli for brainstorming market perspectives.• Modeling – Because trading blogs are typically written by traders for traders, they are often quite powerful in modeling how experienced traders think about the markets. Charles Kirk (www.thekirkreport.com) keeps his trading journal online; Jon Tait (www.fickletrader.blogspot.com) puts his market homework on his blog. Trader Mike (www.tradermike.net) posts annotated charts that capture his thinking about stocks. This aspect of blogs is particularly useful for new day traders who are just beginning to develop their own trading styles. In general, the best blogs come up with fresh, relevant material on a regular basis. The worst blogs are thin veneers for advertising and self-promotion or forums for the author’s rants. As a rule, the best blogs tend to link to other good blogs, which helps traders quickly identify promising resources. If you trace the links to your favorite blog in Technorati, you’re almost certain to find other useful sites.

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