The story I’m about to tell you may or may not be true. After all, I’m just a girl babbling under water.
At random times of the day, during of which I was not faced with severe stress to have all my attention focused on one thing, my thoughts would always wander back to the stock market. HRV was asleep then, and the overwhelming threat to being scammed was real and present.
I would take out my calculator and again and again compute and re-compute how much I would make if the price hits 7. Hits 8. Hits 9.
Be brave, young lady.
I am embarrassed to admit but the more probable HRV would hit a certain level, for example, the recoup-all-losses number, I’d think again and want more. How about become-a-millionaire level? How about adding a bit for some travel fund? How about a bit more for spa and pampering?
I couldn’t stop wanting more. I was mistaken. If only I had been contented with a sure 20% gain versus a 40% probable, I would have made a better job at keeping my profits mine. The equities have been already considered a high-risk investment vehicle, my job, first and foremost should have been taking measures to minimize that risk.
HRV, asleep for some time, with promises made and broken, it finally made its first move.
I can’t remember now how it happened exactly on a minute-by-minute basis but I remember how it all felt. Privileged to witness such things unfold, specially for someone like me, a typical filipina with no sense or background in finance and business, it was such, such an exhilirating experience.
Was it true that they ‘draw’ charts? Yes, it was. Armani was such a tease, he would often have promises underdelivered on a particular date while he kept everyone waiting for ‘the’ day. ‘Loyalty WILL be rewarded.” He said again and again. And so, every one patiently waited.
Until one day, when he had enough control over the public shares, meaning those who were allied to him and had pledged to ride with him had bought majority of the float, he was easily able to manipulate the price movement by selling and buying his own shares while the rest held on to theirs.
I watched in awe at the minutes chart as he sold, bought, sold, bought, candle after candle during the first hour. It was AOTS, it was PUA, it was all his own doing. By the time the market frenzy died down, I received a message from Chico. “Expect it to fall.” and it did.
I didn’t know what to say. It was magnificent and terrifying at the same time.
By afternoon, he bought back most of the shares again. Laying down a solid foundation for HRV believers, the fanaticals and hypers were posting all over social media scolding those who didn’t “believe” like they did. And what did this do? It made those who sold, buy again. It made those who have it promise to never sell. “Don’t be whipsawed! Believe, this will hit high heavens!”
As the day ends, HRV took a top gainer spot, and so the smoke and mirrors were planted on a natural high.
The disguise was complete.
Dao slurred at one of his followers some reassurances that started to sound like the beginnings of flirting. He was obviously drunk. Chiko chuckled a bit as he explained to me that Dao usually traded drunk. It made me laugh.
Dao, with his small nonthreatening form and funny verbal mannerisms, was an effective tool. People respected his I-told-you-so hype and his port screenshots all the while being fashioned to talk in an approachable way.
He had followers who made good money outside the stock market but never really bothered to learn how to trade. Atleast three of them had millions in their account and he had access. He never had a problem with promising, the anxiety of being able to deliver it though, was never even considered.
“Say what you want to say about Dao”, I told Chiko. “But he’s got a certain charm in him.”
“Oh you like him?”, He shot back.
“Oh please.” I pulled my head back and laughed.
Dao was boasting how his followers would do as he say. Richard and Philip watched with amusement.
“I’m not selling until it hits 16,” Richard said. This excited the rest of the Camorra. You expect it to hit 16? Yes, he said, 16 at LEAST.
I was starting to doubt the things I saw then, and I took a hard look at Chiko. “Do you believe that?”
I saw him struggle with the answer. For one thing, Richard commanded respect on and off the market. He had a name to protect so after considering it for a few more minutes, “Yes,” he said, finally. “But we’re selling way before that, and then buy on dips again. It’s not gonna shoot straight up after all.” I nodded but I was still left unconvinced. The Camorra, with all their promises of loyalty, started to look seedy to me. There’s no way they don’t accidentally hit each other with their ways, but I decided to keep my opinion to myself.
And Armani wasn’t half-bad. Not at all. He did a good job painting the chart. His strokes were masterful moves. He knew when to drop it, and when to support it. Fibonnaci or MAs, it didn’t matter. Even the RSI reacted accordingly. If it was time to support it from the MAs standpoint, he was there catching it. If it was about to reach a resistance, he was there selling it.
It made me question what I learned. Was it like that all the time? Am I just playing on to someone’s ‘hand’? Have I been somebody’s fool?
I was in a class when HRV made another monster rally. This was it! Just about a day or two since it started moving but it was already breaking the impenetratable resistance of all time high.
The contrast was disorienting. It was a rather quiet and uneventful day from where I was, my real world where I could actually touch the people I talk to. Nobody in the room understood my internal buzz that I tried to hide and control. Chiko was messaging me nonstop celebrating the day.
Everyone, I think, is familiar with this feeling. The bliss of having a really good day when your stocks are doing very well. I remember being so happy, feeling in control, my anxieties regarding my future dying. Why am I even in this class, I mused. Maybe I can go home now and just trade the markets! Oh, it was such pure unadulterated bliss.
See, I told myself, I’m not half-bad at all and every thing is going back to the better days. I was quickly learning why so many people want a taste of this, and why a good lot of men would rather learn the art of dealing with people, charming their way to the top by being buddies with those who market themselves as insiders rather than learn how to trade.
Learning how to trade takes so much patience and effort and tears and blood. Who wouldn’t want this to be easy?
As soon as HRV was about to break major resistance, it did a thud and someone sold down. It’s okay, I told myself, it was only lunch time by then. But one seller turned into two, and then three, and then it consolidated. I couldn’t explain it but I was already getting nervous. All those months of preparations only to fail a breakout? I didn’t learn the concept of bulltraps then. I wasn’t at that part of my studies.
Don’t worry, don’t worry, Chiko told me repeatedly.
“Everything is accounted for.”
HRV retracted a bit from the resistance before the day ended. Embarrassingly enough, I didn’t know it but that was a bad sign. I thought it was okay and I held on. All I had were the market maker’s promises because my TA skills were still largely underdeveloped. But the public has participated enough and had bought the distribution, and the public did not know of the market maker’s promise, hence they reacted according to their technical analysis.
It slid down ever since that.
I watched my profit fall. From almost 120k which would have halved my losses by then, it turned into 60k. It was fast and unrelentless. And that’s the thing, you see? I trusted Armani too much by then.
I cried that night like I always do whenever I feel like I just kicked another opportunity to go home in the dust. I told Chiko that if it breaks 20SMA, I’m selling. He understood and let me do what I would do as a chartist.
The very next day, it broke 20SMA during the first hour of market opening. With a heavy heart, thinking about the profits that could have been mine, I sold and I cried.
When it was done, during the quiet hours of the aftermath, I’ve decided to take a look at the brokers. A conversation between Philip and Chiko was sent to me and he was told that in jockey plays, you DON’T look at the chart. It wouldn’t make sense, he claimed, but I just could not ignore it anymore. I suppose if I was actually a better technician, I would have learned to sell on the fake breakout like every one else. I was contemplating my decision, long after it was already done, awaiting for a sign to confirm or to deny my choice. I reasoned I couldn’t take one more torturous day of turning my back from my training.
However, since this was a jockey play, I thought there must be a way to watch the comings and goings somehow and I figured it lay there, staring at the list of transactions by broker houses. It was true that the riders’ houses were still there participating, and the revered jockey who used an international house is present, Armani’s brokerage houses were there too… but something didn’t click.
I quickly messaged a friend, Dick, who was a stock broker. I had enough time spent with the guy consistenly for over a month about a year before and I was around enough to see him do some of his work. Innocently, trying to make it sound as light and simple as I could, I asked him about the one time he made a passing remark about selling his shares through someone else’s broker.
“What was that again, Dick? When you had shares but you sold it under the guise of someone else’s.”
“Hmm?,” He said. “Why? Well, you can’t do it. Only stock brokers have that privilege. We do it on the floor, there’s a form we fill to get it ‘done through’.”
Interesting. I thanked him and started to think about this when suddenly it all came back to me, and I realized, right at that moment, how much we were being played. All the while, I thought Armani, the jockey, the riders were all in as long position all through out, but they milked it–several times– FROM US without us knowing! It was impossible to tell unless you are them!
I was upset and I told Chiko. He still haven’t sold his shares. It was alright, he said calmly, his average was much lower than mine. Subtly, I asked him, do you know what Richard or Philip’s broker houses were? And are they stock brokers?
“They aren’t stock brokers, they’re businessmen,” He told me. “But for their houses, hmm,” He paused and considered it. “I’ll get back to you.”
Later on he told me what he knew, and I told him I’ll check something out. I wasn’t at all surprised with what I found out.
Their brokerage houses have been top sellers for the past 3 days.
Chiko sold the next day. His 60k profit shrunk to 20. He was disappointed and quite mad. Even then, Philip and Richard swore to the Camorra they were still holding.
I’ll never know how true that is or if their truth have varying degrees of honesty, but a lesson was learned that day however terribly delivered by men Chiko considered his mentors and his friends.
He tried to warn Dao and the rest of the Camorra but he couldn’t in a way that won’t arouse suspicion that he no longer place his faith on their head strategists. As of today, June 2016, Dao had not sold. The last I’ve heard was that his 1 million profit had easily turned into a 200k loss, and that was with the price back then around May. Today, HRV’s price slipped even more.
One of the most prominent hype-man had even publicly announced that he was wrong, his bet did not get what he hoped for but I can bloody well tell you that I’m almost certain his average price is still lower than the rest of the pitiful crowd who listened. I don’t think we’ll ever hear the end of this man or the start of his apologies.
The strangest thing, however, is how they still talk to Armani. I couldn’t stomach it. They greeted him like none of these tricky games even existed and as if they weren’t sticking on a quarter million paper losses. I tried to understand why but if it was up to me to take a guess, I’d say that they wanted to ride the next one, only next time, sell faster.
It begs the question of how ZFT stayed intact. They are a bit like Camorra, aren’t they? Well, I don’t think they are. If it was up to me again to hypothetically guess, it’s because they do not try to trade blindly as a group listening to someone else’s take on the matters. They have all agreed that the stock market is an individual zero-sum game and so they trade independently, but celebrate together.
Now that everything is said and done, I’d like to give you the service that you all deserve for sticking with me throughout this whole story. Chiko may not be able to warn the rest of the Camorra but let me try it with you.
Trade according to what you’re trained for, don’t be blind, and protect your capital. Always. Play this if you want to play but make sure your probabilities of winning is higher than the rest of the big boys who got stuck in HRV because it might be moving again. I really don’t know. I have stopped associating myself with them. I have only made this logical conclusion according to what I know. A lot of people are stuck inside. They want out and they must find a way to make that happen, right?
All I can tell you is HRV,