Altered States

Ed Thorp, The Man for All Markets — How to Think for Yourself, A Real Estate Cautionary Tale, Hedge Fund History and Warnings, The Incredible Power of Basic Numeracy (and How to Develop It), Thought Experiments on Risk, Popular Delusions, Cryptocurrencies, and More (#604)

“An important thing for everyone is to think about the world and society as us instead of me and to try to act that way and to think longer term. Think about how the things one does affects the people around not only right away but down through the years.”

— Edward O. Thorp

Edward O. Thorp (@EdwardOThorp) is the author of the bestseller Beat the Dealer, which transformed the game of blackjack. His subsequent book, Beat the Market, coauthored with Sheen T. Kassouf, influenced securities markets around the globe. He is also the author of A Man for All Markets: From Las Vegas to Wall Street, How I Beat the Dealer and the Market.

Edward was one of the world’s best blackjack players and investors, and his hedge funds were profitable every year for 29 years. He lives in Newport Beach, California.

You can find our first conversation here.

Please enjoy!

Listen to the episode on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Overcast, Podcast Addict, Pocket Casts, Castbox, Google Podcasts, Stitcher, Amazon Musicor on your favorite podcast platform. You can watch on YouTube here.

Brought to you by Wealthfront automated investing, Vuori comfortable and durable performance apparel, and Eight Sleep’s Pod Pro Cover sleeping solution for dynamic cooling and heating. More on all three below.

#604: Ed Thorp, The Man for All Markets — How to Think for Yourself, A Real Estate Cautionary Tale, Hedge Fund History and Warnings, The Incredible Power of Basic Numeracy (and How to Develop It), Thought Experiments on Risk, Popular Delusions, Cryptocurrencies, and More

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Want to hear Ed’s first time on this show? Have a listen to our conversation here, in which we discuss applying math to gambling, beating roulette with the first wearable computer, longevity regimens, impressing Warren Buffett, investment skills that transfer to other areas of life, methods for enacting positive change, lifelong learning, and much more.

#596: Edward O. Thorp, A Man for All Markets — Beating Blackjack and Roulette, Beating the Stock Market, Spotting Bernie Madoff Early, and Knowing When Enough Is Enough

What was your favorite quote or lesson from this episode? Please let me know in the comments.

SCROLL BELOW FOR LINKS AND SHOW NOTES…

SELECTED LINKS FROM THE EPISODE

  • Connect with Edward O. Thorp:

Website | Twitter

SHOW NOTES

  • [06:39] The value of long-term thinking and the price of short-term thinking
  • [07:57] What is a common stock warrant?
  • [09:52] Why are people generally poor at taking longer term (or alternative) perspectives?
  • [11:08] Conversing about numeracy and common misunderstandings
  • [15:00] How to become more numeracy literate
  • [20:18] It’s Raining Man
  • [22:31] The Rule of 72
  • [26:14] Making the best financial decisions with unknown variables
  • [35:57] How to have fun learning about probability and statistics
  • [37:47] How to get an edge in hedge fund investing (with book recommendations)
  • [46:23] Ed’s methods for losing (or maintaining) weight and looking 60 in spite of being almost 90 years old
  • [53:38] Favorite beer
  • [55:03] Music as stress reduction
  • [56:02] Avoiding unnecessary risks
  • [1:04:12] The age-guessing experiment
  • [1:06:17] Other-directed vs. inner-directed and takeaways from The Lonely Crowd by David Riesman
  • [1:14:35] How an 89-year-old maintains hair growth
  • [1:17:20] Using scrap time
  • [1:19:45] A big change in Ed’s later life that increased its quality
  • [1:22:16] New reflections, future hopes, and parting thoughts

MORE GUEST QUOTES FROM THE INTERVIEW

“When I meet somebody, I don’t think about them as being in any particular category. I think that as far as I’m concerned, they’re my equal and they know things I don’t know. I probably know things they don’t know too, but I can learn from them. And I usually try to hear what they have to say instead of telling them what I have to say.”
— Edward O. Thorp

“Measurement is important because you want facts on which to base what you do instead of hopes, beliefs, wishes, so on.”
— Edward O. Thorp

“You can work out and be fit and have high aerobics and so on, but if you’re not going in for routine colonoscopies and skin cancer checks and so on, you’re leaving a big risk factor open for yourself. So you’ve got to try to get rid of the risks that you can cover.”
— Edward O. Thorp

“Thinking long-term is one thing that running a marathon teaches us.”
— Edward O. Thorp

“The value of being around good people and not being around a few bad people is much higher than it ever was before.”
— Edward O. Thorp

“An important thing for everyone is to think about the world and society as us instead of me and to try to act that way and to think longer term. Think about how the things one does affects the people around not only right away but down through the years.”
— Edward O. Thorp

“A lot of these things that you make better now, for the future, will actually benefit us a lot sooner than you might think”
— Edward O. Thorp

PEOPLE MENTIONED

The Tim Ferriss Show is one of the most popular podcasts in the world with more than 700 million downloads. It has been selected for “Best of Apple Podcasts” three times, it is often the #1 interview podcast across all of Apple Podcasts, and it’s been ranked #1 out of 400,000+ podcasts on many occasions. To listen to any of the past episodes for free, check out this page.

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