Conclusion

Stop for a moment and consider how much life has changed in the past hundred years. Heck, consider the pace of change in just the past couple of decades. For a bit of perspective, I graduated college in 1996, and throughout the course of my undergraduate studies, I never owned a computer. I also never logged onto the Internet. And of course, no one I knew had a cell phone. Globalization wasn't even really a thing yet, and computerized trading was only in its infancy.

Flash forward 20 years and the thought of a college student without computer, cell phone, and Internet access is literally unfathomable (at least in the developed world). And in the financial markets, the concept of human beings shouting at each other to execute trades seems archaic. In fact, humans are largely superfluous to institutional trading, having been replaced by computers. Increasingly, humans aren't even programming those computers, relying instead on artificial intelligence.

Photograph of a financial stock market scenario with a group of traders shouting at each other to execute trades.

SOURCE: Wikipedia.

Many of the innovations we now take for granted have enhanced the world of the individual investor. Lower commissions, greater transparency, and more equal access to information have all served to empower you. Yet, buried deep within these developments are the seeds of trouble, because a byproduct of the world we live in is that it is harder than ever to resist the Siren's call of easy profits and ...

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