Holiday Gifts for Traders

Today’s list of geegaws and gadgets are geared for the Trader on your shopping list. (Our earlier list is here)

The odds are he (statistically) is stressed out, a little worried about his industry (and possibly his job), and unfortunately, making less in 2011 than he did in 2009 or ’10.

These are the items to brighten up his holiday.


Trading/Wall Street Movies: After a long day in the turret, what can be more relaxing than kicking back and watching films about trading? Here are 4 recommended flicks for your keyboard jockey:
Eddie Murphy Trading Places ($6) Only tangentially related to trading, but filled with lots of oft quoted lines, this comedy is good for everyone.
Wall Street ($14) Blue Horseshoe loves Anacott Steel Made in 1987, back when the US had an SEC, an entity that once enforced security laws. Dated, but watchable. Skip the 2010 version — its unwatchable.
Boiler Room ($6) Know a retail stock jockey? This gritty flick will show him what the bad old days were like in the land of penny stocks. A cautionary tale with a great cast.
Glengary Glen Ross ($8.50) For the Institutional Sales Trader in your life. Give him this DVD, but no coffee — Coffee’s for closers only.
Margin Call Still in theaters, it has already been called the greatest Wall Street movie ever made.


Quiet Revolution: 30 Years of Windham Hill ($28) Your trader dude stressed out? He needs to pour himself a stiff one, and chill out to this collection of acoustically rooted mellowness that is a blend of folk, classical and jazz. The upside is he will relax from the day’s tensions. The downside is his heart may not realize that this is supposed to occur in Humans and assume he is dead.


Ted Baker Ties: £50

Years ago, I was wearing a Ted Baker tie to a Fox News shooting. Just before we shot, I went to change into something much less loud. The director stopped me, saying “TV washes everything out, and a bright fun tie will really pop. It works well — Trust me on this.”

I did, and now all of my favorite ties come from Ted Baker. They are bright, colorful and fun. If you must wear a noose around your neck for work, well then this is the way to go.

Note the link is to the UK site, which has a much more extensive collection than does the US site.

And for you bargain hunters, you can find Ted Baker on sale at Century 21 — normally $89, on sale for $30-40.


Spa Massage De-Stress Muscle Release: $125-190  This deeply restorative treatment is specifically designed for tight, stressed and aching muscles. Too many hours spent sitting on the trading desk leaves your  body stiff, tight and painful.

Swedish and cross muscle fiber massage techniques with stretching and draining are combined with essential oils known for their beneficial effects on the circulation.

Try the Nickel Spa for Men: They do massages, manicure/pedicures, facials, and the infamous “Boyzillian” (if you have to ask, you don’t want to know).


Led Zeppelin: Complete Studio Recordings ($94) What’s that you say? Your guy relaxes buy banging heads, not chillaxing? Well then, he can go back to the beginning of hard rock, with the often imitated, never duplicated, king of guitar driven music.

Led Zeppelin’s work is the central fact of 1970s rock & roll; These remastered recordings — by Jimmy Page himself — are pristine versions of the Zep that your favorite rockers grew up playing air guitar to.

The Rosetta stone of album rock.


Books for the Trader’s Library Three different book shelves for the different traders in your life.

The Newbie Trader (Starter pack)
1 Stock Market Wizards: Interviews with America’s Top Stock Traders
2 Reminiscences of a Stock Operator
3 How I Trade and Invest in Stocks and Bonds

The Historian
1 Bull: A History of the Boom and Bust, 1982-2004
2 Black Monday: The Catastrophe of October 19, 1987
3 Extraordinary Popular Delusions & the Madness of Crowds

The Technician
1. Technical Analysis from A to Z
2. Encyclopedia of Chart Patterns
3. Japanese Candlestick Charting


width=Padron Anniversary Series 1926 Exclusivo ($250/case) For the cigar smoker on your list, I suggest one of my favorite smokes. Consistently top rated by Cigar Aficionado & frequently named top 5 Cigar of the Year, a fast delightful smoke.

Spark ’em up with the Lotus 21 Twin Flame Torch Lighter ($47) — A great piece of hardware (I own two)


Buy! Sell! $85  from KAL, the cartoonist for the Economist, this classic 2 panel cartoon laughingly depicts how the crowd moves from buying to selling and back.

C’mon, we’re all sick of that cliched Bull and Bear print fighting it out in the street in front of the of NYSE.

Instead, try one of these prints, each with a contrarian behavioral message.

Avoid the Crowd $125 from Gaping Void’s Hugh McLeod.

Don’t just stand out from the crowd — avoid the crowd altogether.

And yes, both of these hang in my office.


Yoga ($50-250) is a great way to focus your mind, relax, and get in the right state for the day ahead.

It works for, amongst other folks, bond king Bill Gross, whose shop runs a ~trillion dollar sin fixed income.

You should be able to purchase a gift certificate from a local studio. In NYC, try Pure Yoga — one of the top rated studios over the past few years.


Herman Miller Embody Chair ($1100-1700) Embody lets your body move and keeps you well supported. Blood circulates better, heart rate goes down, more oxygen flows to the brain, and there is no distracting discomfort or physical constraint. The ideal trader’s chair, allowing the mind to work best when the body is unconstrained.

In assorted features, colors and materials.

If you have to sit all day, you might as well do it in style, and support your back at the same time.


Bethpage Black Golf Course: Its not easy to get a tee time at the home of one of the toughest courses on the US Open tour, but it can be done.

Especially if you are willing to take a day off from trading and go midweek — Weekdays (18 Holes): $130.00


CineMassive Trio Gemini 17D 6 Screen holder : $1,749

This entry-level (?!) six screen display has a crisp, clear digital signal, a full, rich digital canvas that will provide you with the full view of any picture. Designed to provide an immersive experience, allowing your trader to visualize a large amount of information at once.

Using a multi-screen display for the first time is often described as feeling like having received a new lobe of brain.


Caddy for a Cure:  ($5,000 and up) For the avid golfer who is having an especially good year.

Caddy for the Cure gives an opportunity to spend the day caddying for one of the world’s best golfers at an official PGA TOUR tournament. Select a player from the PGA TOUR events list; You either “Buy It Now” at the price listed, or make your best offer.

The guys I know who did this lost their minds, saying it was the greatest experience on a golf course they ever had.

And, 100% of the proceeds goes to charity.

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