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Information Overload

Have you ever felt as if the more you know, the less you know, and the more you become confused? Why is this?

People have the tendency to believe that the accuracy of their forecasts increases with more information. This is the illusion of knowledge - that more information increases your knowledge about something and improves your decisions. However, this is not always the case - increased levels of information do not necessarily lead to greater knowledge. There are three reasons for this. First, some information does not help us make predictions and can even mislead us. Second, many people may not have the training, experience, or skills to interpret the information. And, finally, people tend to interpret new information as confirmation of their prior beliefs.

Let me give you an example of how too much information can lead to a paralysis of confusion.

I met a man who was an avid student of the teachings of W.D. Gann. Gann believed in the movement of prices along a 45-degree angle. He also believed that time intervals of 3, 5, 9, and others had great importance. So the man I knew created moving averages of 3 bars, 5 bars, 9 bars and multiples thereof. Of course, 3 x 9 equals 27 and so he kept 27 bar moving averages. 5 x 9 is 45, and so he also kept 45 bar moving averages. He also watched 135 bar moving averages (3x45) and others. He looked for agreement among all of these moving averages, which of course, led to great confusion, since it was rare indeed and most likely coincidental when all of the moving averages showed some sort of agreement (confluence). So this man suffered greatly from paralysis of analysis. He simply had too much information, and he was unable to pull the trigger on a trade.

I will never forget the statement he made to me: "Joe, I know so much. Why then is it that I never seem to be making money?"

I think from the above description you should be able to figure it out, just as I did.


Comments 1

Guest - David Autrey on Saturday, 08 August 2020 08:19

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Wednesday, 17 August 2022

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