Politics, Real life, Social development, War and peace

A day at the beach in the brave “new normal”

Last week some of the beaches in the South of France finally reopened. But there were some new rules to observe and I couldn’t resist sharing a few photos of this experience:


The new rules define how to use the beach. They are clearly stated at the entrance to the restricted area: beachgoers can enjoy a cca. 20-m stretch of sand between 8 AM to 5 PM for the maximum duration of 1 hour. A map shows how to descend to the beach and how to return. People must leave their belongings in a specially designated area and may not stay lying on the sand after swimming.


Charming fencing and police tape demarcate the authorized areas…


To make sure everyone complies with the rules, the police forces were present, all armed with pistols and wearing bullet-proof vests:


In all, the 20-m authorized bathing area was watched at various times by 8 police officers plus two life guards who are also part of the police force.


One of the officers carried an automatic rifle. For as long as I observed him, he kept his index finger just by the rifle’s trigger.


Some people clearly did not understad the simple new rules and the police quickly made an example of them. Fortunately, it was not necessary for them to use their weapons – a few 135 Euro fines would suffice this time.


These non-compliant individuals set down their bags and towels outside the authorized area. But for most of us, the periodic whistles and shouts from the police were a sufficient reminder not to stray too far from the authorized enclosure.  This was made easier still, thanks to the warnings repeated every 30 minutes or so over a loudspeaker system.

Of course, most of us found it easy to comply. In all, it was a beautiful day and within the restricted area you could almost forget to feel thankful to the authorities for granting us 60 minutes to enjoy ourselves at the beach. The only part of the experience that slightly impaired this enjoyment was the fact that the sea is still a bit cold.



Asset management, Central banking, Inflation, Market trends, Stock market, Trend following

Bear market or bubble reflation: what comes next?

In March last year, I published an article looking at historical perspective on boom/bust cycles in SeekingAlpha. I suggested then that, “the (still) festering economic imbalances might get resolved along two alternative scenarios. Either we’ll have a full-blown deflationary depression that could see asset prices drop by 50% or more, or we’ll have a strong and sustained decline in the US Dollar, ” accompanied with a continued rise in equity markets. Today, the latter scenario appears more likely. Here’s why: Continue reading

Health, Policy, Truth

Reject fear: your immune system is robust and resilient – your best bet for good health and vitality

Three weeks ago I published, “Don’t succumb to virus fear,” – one of my best read articles so far. As a layman, I hesitated to publish more than just 6 paragraphs based on official data and very simple, non-controversial advice on how to bolster your immune system.

In the intervening days, many experts have come out offering essentially the same advice. Today I came across the superb interview with Dr. Shiva Ayyadurai, MIT immunologist with four PhDs whose message is authoritative and completely in agreement with my timid prose from a few weeks ago. Continue reading

Asset management, Commodity price, Commodity risk, Stock market, Trading, Trend following

With I-System through March storm – part 2

March 2020 market storm has been an important test of the I-System model and the way it navigated the unforeseen events. The results have been very encouraging and the system has done well in all affected markets. Last week I summarized its performance on Brent crude oil, Silver and US 30-year Bond. Here we take a look at how it performed in Russell 2000, S&P500 and Palladium markets. Continue reading

Asset management, Commodity price, Commodity risk, Hedging, Market trends, Oil market, Risk management, Trading, Trend following

With I-System through the storm… with flying colors!

Recent weeks brought severe price shocks in many markets. Their timing and severity took most participants by surprise. In these circumstances, I-System strategies performed superbly well. As this post shows, a few strategies sustained negative results, but this is to be expected. This is why, rather than formulating a trading strategy, we built a stable knowledge framework so that we can formulate and implement literally thousands of strategies within that framework. In this sense I-System holds potential to entirely transcend uncertainty by supplanting it with a more predictable risk class: a swarm of consistent, intelligent and emotionless trading agents, each in charge of a small fraction of portfolio risk. The current experience was an important test for the I-System. The results speak for themselves. Continue reading

Children, Mystery, Psychology, Real life, Truth


This is a personal story, and it may seem a strange one to share given the difficult days we are living through. But I think it could not be more relevant. Here goes:

Years ago I read “The Hiram Key” by Christopher Knight and Robert Lomas. Not a memorable book, but one thing I vaguely remembered about it was the authors’ alternative explanation for where the name “America” came from. Over the last few weeks, a very remarkable experience unfolded in relation to this question… Continue reading

Health, Real life

Don’t succumb to virus fear

UPDATE: I have followed up on this post including an important interview with Dr. Shiva Ayyadurai, MIT epidemiologist whose authoritative perspective is important to consider: Reject Fear! Your immune system is robust and resilient…


Today I learned that schools in Monaco and all of France won’t open on Monday morning and will remain closed at least until early May 2020. This is the authorities’ emergency response to the Corona virus pandemic that engulfed much of the world.

Whether this response is appropriate or overkill, I cannot say but I think it is important that we not succumb to irrational fear of Corona virus – or any other disease. To put things into proper perspective, consider what we know about pathogens like the poliovirus, TB and malaria: Continue reading