Said Livermore to his son Paul: "I believe that the public wants to be led, to be instructed, to be told what to do. They want reassurance. They will always move en masse, a mob, a herd, a group, because people want the safety of human company. They are afraid to stand alone because they want to be safely included within the herd, not to be the lone calf standing on the desolate, dangerous, wolf-patrolled prairie of contrary opinion.
"This is where it gets slightly complicated because I always wanted to trade along the line of least resistance, so I was generally moving along with the crowd, the herd, most of the time. It was when the change in trend started to appear, the change in market direction, that was the most difficult change to catch and act upon. So I was always hunting for the clues to the change. So I was always ready to separate myself from the popular thinking, the group thinking, and go the opposite way.
"It is the most difficult time in a speculator’s trading life. These major changes in trends were hard to catch, but I did not want to ride the sled downhill with the crowd, unless I had sold stocks short."
–Jesse Livermore, World’s Greatest Stock Trader, by Richard Smitten