Kroll on futures trading strategy
by Dr. Alexander Elder
Author: Stanley Kroll
Publisher: Dow Jones-Irwin
1818 Ridge Road
Homewood, IL 60430
Contents: 203 pages, hardbound
Stanley Kroll is reputed to have taken seven-figure profits out of the inflationary markets of the 1970s.
He also wrote two good market books in those days: The Commodity Futures Market Guide (with Irwin
Shishko) and The Professional Commodity Trader. Kroll spent the next several years traveling in Europe
and writing books on sailing. He returned to the U.S. and the futures markets in the mid-1980s.
A number of important points covered in Kroll's earlier works are repeated in his new book: identify the
long-term trend and trade only in its direction; don't overcomplicate your system; follow technical factors
rather than fundamentals; focus on trend-following rather than predicting; etc., etc.
Kroll also makes several good observations on the psychology of trading. He describes a "potent
adrenaline rush of fear" when you are caught on the losing side of a trade. He shows how a trader's mind
becomes clouded by emotion, making real-time trading more treacherous than paper trading.
The book reprints many long-term weekly continuation charts which confirm the importance of long-term
market outlook. Kroll advises patience and quotes his hero, Jesse Livermore, as saying: "Big profits are
made by sitting," and "Once a major trend develops, it tends to pick up momentum, increasingly feeding
on its own strength or weakness," and "Trying to pick off tops or bottoms against strongly entrenched
price trends is invariable dangerous to one's financial health."