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Why You Don’t Want Symmetry in Investing | Mike Shell, Shell Capital Management | #71

“It’s not about trying to make all the trades a winner – it’s about having the average win be much greater than the average loss – and that is asymmetry.” – Mike Shell (Tweet)

Most trend following firms have clients that invest somewhere between 2 and 20% of their portfolio with that firm, but Mike Shell’s firm is different. His strategy is tailored to a specific customer, and almost all of his clients have their entire investment portfolios with his firm. We dive into the specifics of Shell Capital Management in this episode, and how Mike grew up in the southern United States with a military background to become the owner of his own firm.

Thanks for listening and please welcome our guest Mike Shell.

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In This Episode, You’ll Learn:

  • The ways that Mike’s firm is different from other firms.
  • His upbringing in Tennessee.
  • How he started Shell Capital in 2004.
  • The books that influenced him in his trend following education.
  • What his experience was in the brokerage world.

    “You have to start somewhere – even some of the greatest traders in the world started the same way.” – Mike Shell (Tweet)

  • Why he left the brokerage world and what gave him the courage to become an entrepreneur.
  • His experience in the military and law enforcement.
  • What he does when he’s not trading.

    “I create systems for everything – everything we do is some sort of system. That’s my passion.” – Mike Shell (Tweet)

  • Why symmetry is the last thing he wants when it comes to investing.
  • How his asymmetry term came about.
  • Why he relishes uncertainty.

    “Change and uncertainty, the thing that a lot of people fear, is actually what leads to happiness.” – Mike Shell (Tweet)

  • How he structures his firm to compete in his industry.
  • How the firm plans to grow and what they outsource.

    “We are completely and utterly focused on this one thing that we do.” – Mike Shell (Tweet)

  • The way that people should interpret his track record.

Resources & Links Mentioned in this Episode:

“I read ‘How to Make Money In Stocks’ in the early 90s and that got me interested in trading.” – Mike Shell (Tweet)

Books that Mike was influenced by:

This episode was sponsored by Swiss Financial Services:

Connect with Shell Capital Management:

Visit the Website:

E-Mail Shell Capital Management here.

Follow Mike Shell on Linkedin

“An algorithm is a big scary word to people, but it’s just a decision tree.” – Mike Shell (Tweet)


  1. Fred on 02/12/2015 at 2:03 AM

    What I enjoyed about this podcast is that Mike spoke more about enjoying life than any other guest has in the podcasts. There is more to life than trading (as important as that is to those of us who are regular listeners).

    • Mike Shel on 02/13/2015 at 12:43 AM

      Thanks Fred for the nice comment. Now, in episode 2 you’ll hear we get into a lot more detail about trading!

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