Industry veteran Daniel Gramza’s address at our new address, the Walkie Talkie building at 20 Fenchurch Street, London EC2M 7QH, was eagerly anticipated. He reminded us that once before he had travelled to Britain from his native Chicago to address an audience of technical analysts: in 1990 for Cambridge Research – which does feel like a very long time ago.
The fact he started out trading in the futures and options pits was self evident as he regaled us with hand signals and shared reminiscences of his early days. Again, it all feels a very long time ago – something I was reminded of today when, in conversation, I made the old-fashioned hand signal for a telephone call (thumb and index finger extended across my ear). More importantly he said, ‘the floor influences how I think about markets’ and that ‘on the floor you hear it by sound’, and charts are a picture of that.
He then went into a detailed description of candles, their interpretation, and the psychology behind them. While perhaps a bit too basic for STA members, the way he explained these did seem to resonate with some of the audience and a few are points worth reiterating. For example: ‘the body of the candle represents market acceptance, while shadows are its rejection’. I also liked the idea that after a significant candle, the next 2 to 5 periods are crucial. Trouble is, this might create too much ‘wait and see’. Paradoxically he claims to like long-dated options, yet feels that this trade must be profitable within 3 days.
The charts he used were rather dark and lacked definition, supplied by the spread-betting arm Fineco of Italy’s UniCredit bank. He has obviously worked with them before (three of their staff were prominent at our meeting), and has plans for another few talks in the UK; he offered VIP passes to the audience for The London FOREX Show in 10 days’ time – which STA members can already get as a perk! (Call the STA office on 020 7125 0038 for more details).
Poor thing, having struggled a bit standing in front of the screen projector – so the charts ran across his nose – he then talked at the screen, thus blocking the audience’s sight line of the section he was talking about. After that his mobile phone rang in his pocket. He had the grace and wit to say: ‘I think that might be a margin call’.