Brendan Byrnes: You do a lot of writing about fundamental technical analysis. Where do you side in this kind of debate, fundamental versus technical?
Jack Schwager: OK, yeah. I've interviewed people like Jim Rogers, who will tell you the only rich technician they've met are those that sell their services. How's that for cynicism?
I've met people, on the other hand, like Marty Schwartz, who was phenomenal in the results he achieved. His attitude was, he spent a dozen years as a Wall Street analyst on the fundamental side, lost money every year, and got rich as a technician.
You can get both opposites, yet they both were immensely successful. What that tells you is that there is no right answer to that. It's what's right for you. Some people are great at just using technical, some are great using fundamental, some combine the two. It's a personal choice. They're both reasonable approaches for the right person.
Brendan: Do you think they're mutually exclusive?
Jack: No. No, no. You can basically do both. For example, back in late 2008 the markets were crashing, commodity prices were coming way down. Now, I don't put myself out as a great trader or anything, but at a basic thought, I thought that commodity prices really ... we'd gotten down to such low levels that they really shouldn't go down much more. They shouldn't have much downside and they had a lot of potential upside, so I thought the idea of buying long-term LEAPs and stuff like mines -- like an XME or something like that -- that made sense. That's a fundamental concept.
Then putting on that position and trading it, I may have used technical points, so: "Where do I put on the trade? Let's get a certain swing of a certain nature. Let's get a certain support area." That's a way I, personally, would have combined a fundamental concept with technical for timing the entry of that trade.