Two Great Men
William. D. Gann & Pythagoras
William. D. Gann
2568 years ago a mathematical genius was born. His name was Pythagoras. He lived in Greek Asia Minor in the prosperous City
State of Samos. However, despite his attraction to sculptors, painters and poets he did not get along with the most famous
man in Samos and was forced to leave. He moved to Southern Italy with his followers where again his arrogance and mystical
fervour eventually offended his new Italian neighbours. He then moved to Crotona.
Whilst probably having an unsavoury
character his effect on the world's knowledge was immense. He discovered that there was a strange relationship between mathematics
and music. Whilst fiddling with a musical instrument he was surprised to observe that the divisions of the taught string which
produced harmony could be described in terms of simple ratios between pairs of numbers i.e. ½, 2/3, and ¾ known today as do,ray,me,far
etc.. (The Quests within will expose the same relationships within today's speculative markets) This extraordinary fact amazed
the great man in so far as he considered that it was strange that mathematical relationships could be associated with the
exultation's created by music. He then spent the rest of his life proving the intimate connection between mathematics and
the material world such discoveries have both inspired and puzzled thinkers since that time many centuries ago.
has since been followed by the likes of Newton and Einstein. Whilst not understanding, modern man is now prepared to accept
the role of mathematics in determining the facts of the natural world. However this acceptance does not extend to the affairs
of man himself. Very few are prepared to accept that human beings can possibly be controlled by a set of mathematical principles.
Man is far too clever for that, or is he? As I write I have just heard that 1/3rd of people in Great Britain cannot read and
then understand a simple newspaper article. This, after centuries of civilisation, embracing a period when Britain was the
acknowledged leader of the world.
William. D. Gann - Many
centuries after Pythagoras, W.D. Gann, a gifted mathematician and a stock broker, decided to investigate whether the investment
community, en masse, makes investment judgements based upon mathematical principles similar to those discovered by Pythagoras
and more recently, in the vibration field, further advanced by Faraday.
His investigations commenced in the late 1890's
when the principles of mathematics was applied to the movements of the stock markets. He discovered that mathematical principles
could be directed to individual shares, indices and later the commodity markets which precisely explained the movements of
the market and it's constituents. The truth of the markets was exposed but Gann soon realised that the world was not ready
for his discoveries. How right he was. I doubt if the situation has changed with the passing of the 20th century. Closed minds
and apathy contribute heavily to the continued non acceptance of the genius of this extraordinary man. Gann Management intend
to change all that. After all, in his day Pythagoras was thought to be a blot on the landscape for upsetting the status quo.
Only history exposed his genius.
In his own time Gann made some sensational predictions including the prediction of
the 1929/1932 Wall Street crash a year ahead of the September 1929 fall. In front of the press he made 1000% on his original
capital over a period of a month! He showed how he converted a $3000 1915 investment in US Steel into $6,800,000 in 1935!
He forecast the 1930's depression and the US entry in World War 11 in 1940. He is reputed to have forecast the winning numbers
of the New York lottery on several occasions. I find this hard to believe. He is reputed to have taken an average of $1,000,000
p.a. from the stock markets over a 50 year period. This is a short list of achievements which are truly impressive. So impressive
that in the early 1930's he was able to charge $3,000 for his course. An amount that would have purchased a very impressive
home in the 1930's.
If you still have doubts on the value of mathematics in assessing stock market moves, it is interesting
to note that Charles Van Doren in his best selling book concludes that the ability to reduce knowledge to mathematical principles
is a 'vital' constituent to profound understanding. 'Wherever mankind has been able to measure things, which means to transform
or reduce to numbers, it has indeed made great progress both in understanding and in controlling them, Where human beings
have failed to find a way to measure, they have been less successful, which partly explains the relative failure of psychology,
economics and literary criticism to acquire the status of science.'
Gann successfully broke down the mysteries of
the markets by the application of mathematical principles allowing lesser mortals to accurately assess market movements with
a series of mathematical formulae. It was a great revolutionary discovery - how to measure, explain and manipulate the natural
law of the speculative markets.
My own view, like Charles Van Doren, is that using economics and fundamental analysis,
without reference to mathematical principles, has inherent weaknesses which in times of unusual markets, especially falling
markets, have within them the seeds of their own destruction. That is, they have no mathematical basis and therefore it is
impossible to accurately assess all the relevant features to come to satisfactory conclusions when unusual events take place.
They only have relevance in the middle of rising or falling markets. They fail miserably at the extremes of markets both on
the upside and the downside. They are particularly susceptible to misinterpretation when the market turns down.
make no apologies for bracketing W.D. Gann with the legendary Pythagoras. I consider that Gann made discoveries which establish
the movements of the speculative markets with immense accuracy. Within this site many examples of his genius will be portrayed.
For instance, we will be able to illustrate the ability of his techniques to accurately forecast the movements of interest
rates! Such movements are supposedly within the control of politicians and bankers. If such movements in rates can be proved
to be mathematically based then surely we can do away with politicians and central bankers. That would indeed be a very happy
To Return To TOOLS OF THE TRADE HOME PAGE