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The Trading Tribe

Associates Program




The Trading Tribe Associates Program

provides an opportunity to work directly with Ed

on an original research project

and to further the work of The Trading Tribe.


To apply to the program,

send your research idea to FAQ




Associate Reports




The Grab-a-Profit

Trading System


by Mark Sleeman





Sample Comments


Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Hello Mark,

Tonight I read your description of the GRAB System linked to the Trading Tribe Web site and feel great affinity for your experience. Your documentation is very engaging about the initial goal, your journey to build and test a counter-trend system that takes the pros to the cleaners, and disperses your stomach knots from whipsaw action. Your coup de grace: the system does not play with the big dogs (major trends) missing them altogether (almost) and loses money overall. Thank you for documenting this valuable work for the rest of us.

Four weeks ago I join Edís Incline Village Trading Tribe where we are working on a personal goal for 10 meetings. My goal is to incorporate NLP and System Dynamics into my current trend-following system and trade real money on it, by June 1, 2009. I also conduct market testing to determine whether I want to trade money for others. Question for you: how do you enjoy being a CTA?

At Tribe I really enjoy meeting other committed traders. Already four persons are friends and among the most compatible people I meet in my lifetime (60 years so far). Trading is my fourth career. Wish I had discovered it earlier!

I also attend the next workshop on April 24. How about you?

Lastly, a year ago November my wife and I spent 3 weeks touring your country of New Zealand and loved it. My goal was fly fishing and it was great, especially around Garston on South Island and on the Tongariro near Lake Taupo. Wonderful friendly people everywhere too.

Best regards,

Thursday, March 5, 2009



What an excellent piece of research.

Thanks and all the best.

Sunday, 1 March 2009

Dear Mark,

Thank you for your work that you posted to the Trading Tribe website regarding your back testing of the GRAB system. I have a feeling I will be reviewing your work frequently!

Best to you,

Sunday, 1 March 2009

Hi, Mark!

I just read your article on Ed's Site and enjoyed it very much.

You are certainly right about how others (me, for instance) feel about wanting to catch the lows and sell the highs. I'm glad you did some number crunching to help remind me that some times "feelings" need to take a back seat to "logic."

Well, I see by the calendar this morning that Spring is only 21 days away for me, so I guess that means you are approaching Fall, as it were. Personally, I like it much better as the days grow longer rather than shorter, so I'm glad to be here in Montana right now, but I'd still like to visit NZ one day, and I've got a brand new reason: My cousin, who married one of your fellow countrymen a few months ago, just waved bye-bye to all of her Montana buds and headed to Auckland with Hubby, so he can return to school and get that degree in Biology; they've extended an invitation to come visit. I wonder what I'll be doing six months from now, which sounds like about the perfect time to head Down Under?

Thanks again for your research, and for sharing it!

Good day, Mate

Dear Mr. Sleeman,

I believe your research also shows that all back testing parameters are system specific and take us to curve fitting parameters. It's not a terrible discovery. Let's say you buy on breakouts, and you have an optimal parameter range between 120-140, optimal range written by Mr. ED SEYKOTA for gold (on trend following examples page). This range is optimal for gold, but may be not for the other futures. All markets have different characteristics and in each of them we find different set of optimal parameters. You say that, The GRAB system only works well during the rare times that its parameters are in sync with the market action. Yes, but the same holds true for breakouts as well. So, why it's a terrible discovery.

At the end we could also say that it does not have to be optimal for all of them. We can test all 15 markets and come up with a set of parameters which work generally on all of them. But the same holds true for retracements, we can run a system test and we find a general set of parameters which will let you jump in many times, why it has to be 40-80.

I accept that buying on breakouts has an advantage of not missing the big move, because the price many not come back again, and it's whole point of trend following. But it doesn't mean that you can't buy on retracements, it just shows that you are in the wrong set of parameters.

Friday, February 27, 2009

Thanks, Mark Sleeman, for the GRAB system project.

Friday, February 27, 2009



Thank you so much for sharing your walk-thru process on your development of the GRAB system. It is very insightful.

Did you learn to code trading systems on your own?

Congratulations on all your success my friend.

Friday, February 27, 2009



I am a trend following trader and close follower of Ed Seykota's TT site. I see your research project posted on Ed's TT FAQ site and read it voraciously, first reading quickly and then going back over it more slowly several more times. I am struck by the similarity of our experiences when trading. I feel frustration with whipsawed trades, fear of failure when following my system during drawdowns, thoughts of "I can beat my system", and infrequently take trades that are 'bargain hunting', to medicate my judgment of these feelings (this bargain hunting loses me $). My 'aha' in reading your research project: my "trading feelings" are natural, common, and healthy. I commit to experience my "trading feelings" without judgment. Thank you for your great contribution to fellow traders!

Note to Seykota-Sensei,
Thank you for sharing your wisdom. Now back to my "wax on, wax off" back testing and "paint the fence" position sizing studies.

Friday, February 27, 2009


Dear Mark,

Thank you for your work that you posted to the Trading Tribe website regarding your back testing of the GRAB system. I have a feeling I will be reviewing your work frequently!

Best to you,

Friday, February 27, 2009


Dear Mr. Sleeman:

I thank you for your time and effort to help reader understand the value and importance of back testing. I have been avoiding this important process (back testing) up to now. Your work is step by step and very easy to understand for anybody. I sincerely thank you for your contribution.