Denise Shull’s Advice for Making Better Investment Decisions

Featuring Denise Shull

Denise Shull of the ReThink Group is a world-class decision coach who’s perhaps best known for being a real-world inspiration for the Wendy Rhoades character on “Billions.” In this piece, she shares some of her fascinating beliefs about the investment decision-making process, and distills those down into incredibly useful takeaways. Please note that this video is comprised of shorter clips that previously appeared on Real Vision, compiled here for ease of viewing.

Published on
9 October, 2018
Hedge fund, Psychology, Trading
61 minutes
Asset class


  • TS

    Tamás S.

    20 10 2018 11:51

    0       0

    "Kyle Bias", anyone being non US and nor Chinese can see how skewed his views are. I have the sensation he is just angry at China. Just two examples:
    -39:55 "evil china takes ppl into concentration camps, but ppl buy their bonds" -> counting on the ethics of bond markets WTF?
    -36:50 "to oppose US in the south china see" This second one really gives it away, it's them against "US". Those ugly Chinese... Kyle will teach them a "Short" lesson :)

    Being angry at the market is probably not a good idea.

  • SP

    Sat P.

    20 10 2018 10:56

    0       0

    Awesome insights, especially around the link to working capital from abroad running negative. I will have to watch it again to take more notes!

  • CS

    C S.

    20 10 2018 09:29

    0       0

    Anybody else working and living in Hong Kong? In '98 they defended the peg and let asset prices take the hit. It makes sense for them to ultimately take an adjustment in the currrency this time.

    I've been concerned about the HKD for a while as I have savings in that currency. Switching to USD or other currencies is one measure. But how about HK banks? Would it be wise to move funds to a bank in another country eg, Singapore (Australian banks are dodgy),?

    Just thinking out loud. I dont know any financial types socially. And have another 18months to go before I consider leaving HK.

  • BM

    Beat M.

    20 10 2018 08:50

    0       0

    So, do I understand it right, HKD would weaken 30% to peg with mother China, to let’s say 1:10, at the same time stocks would appreciate (in HKD), the opposite SNB play?
    Thats one for trading ideas, no? How to play best?

  • WC

    Wilson C.

    20 10 2018 07:19

    1       0

    apologies, i just posted and even though i had spacing and paragraphs, everything got jumbled together when it posted, totally understand if people don't read it :-) it's messy

  • WC

    Wilson C.

    20 10 2018 07:17

    4       0

    Interesting discussion, have been w/ RV since the beginning, and started following Kyle Bass since the GFC. Grant is such a great and balanced interviewer, and it did come across that Kyle had a very strong opinion on China/China thesis that went beyond the data (analysis), ie, his personal opinion (nothing wrong, just to be aware).

    Some thoughts to share:

    - talks about monitoring flows, current account deficits, USD shortage. all makes sense.. but betting against a country & central bank? in US, it was trade ahead of the Fed and not against (no matter what you thought of QE or economy), not trading against the JCB, and I would think same applies here re: RMB/Central Bank.

    - someone mention his Japan thesis (last 10 years?) on Yen devaluation / Bug in search of a windshield, all supported by the data but then you have the JCB / Govt Policies... how long do you want to trade against someone who can print money :-) the same apply to RMB/China?

    - on China as the bad actor. IP theft. paying for their military, letting china into the WTO. Seems to be the common press narrative that Kyle is articulating. Hmmm...
    ... IP Theft. What type? Military espionage? pretty sure every country is doing to to every other country. Industrial espionage? Same, companies been doing it to each other for eons. Unfair Trade policies? ie you need to share your trade secrets or partner w/ a local chinese company in order to do business/sell in China (probably this one?). Well, we can always say no, and walk away i don't need your business (or let avarice take over). This reminds me of companies between a rock and hard place selling to Walmart, if you sell, you mess up your pricing in the market with your other customers (as Walmart will sell it at the cheapest price everywhere) but you have volume, or you don't and Walmart goes with your competitor (so you have less market share and may be bankrupt anyways as customers go for the cheaper brand). Damn if you do, and damn if you don't... kinda like China market? Sour grapes much?
    ... I like how Grant remind Kyle the funding (bonds?) for chinese military is not hidden, it's transparent if you do due diligence, but most investors are greedy and going for the investment return and don't care enough to find out... no evil empire intent i think
    ... China in WTO, interesting spin. I don't know much about this, but I don't think China was in WTO from "goodness of heart", didn't it make it easier for multi-nationals to leverage (I won't use language like exploit haha) the cheap labor, land, electricity lack of concern on standards/safety/environment in China? then China grew up and costs and standards got expensive.
    ... i saw another article somewhere that China already files as many patents as USA? and if you go to china at least once/year, you can see the innovations are surpassing the world, be it the bullet trains, or wepay/alipay, services, etc esp in the big cities. They've taken ideas/tech and improved on it. No different from the Japanese in the 70'/80's, the Korean's in 90's/20's and now Chinese. and in the future, maybe Vietnam or India etc... the virtuous cycle continues...

    - interesting take on HK. I live in HK last 20 years. I don't think the general population would agree that last 10 years was the best in HK, except if you own a few properties post GFC. thus, the Occupy Central angst, the young restless against China/mainlanders flooding into HK making everything expensive and taking jobs, life is not getting better when you have to pay $750K USD for 300sqft condo (27 sqm)... wonder how regularly Kyle travels to HK as I'm sure he would get a different perspective.

    In short, I thought Grant had the more balanced view (esp since he lives in Singapore), Kyle shared some fascinating data points on China (for another interview, search for Leland Miller one) and his thinking process, but I'm more inclined to think this may be similar to his Japan/Yen is a bug in search of a windshield thesis.... still waiting for that one to drop.

    thanks for reading

  • MT

    Mark T.

    20 10 2018 06:24

    0       0

    52.39 time stamp
    I disagree with Grant . The Golden Carrot is not important. The concept of Chinese ethics and moral foundation being entirely alien to ours will, in retrospect, be seen as the overarching factor determining outcomes. I am frightened to think that my president and Congress have too little awareness of this as they prosecute policy on my behalf.

  • JB

    Jason B.

    20 10 2018 04:31

    0       0

    Fantastic interview! And I didn't hear any of the background noise that was warned about beforehand!

  • SB

    Stephen B.

    20 10 2018 03:34

    0       0

    Priceless. An amazing hour.

  • rr

    rlw r.

    20 10 2018 03:19

    0       0

    Epic chat. Thanks Kyle & Grant for your many valuable insights.

  • HO

    H2 O.

    20 10 2018 03:00

    5       1

    Well, KB still doesn't understand Chinese politics and how policymakers respond to these kinds of situations. It has cost his firm tons of money. The CNH shorts are piling on, and before the currency craters, PBOC will jack up CNH Hibor again (as they have done numerous times) and the slaughter will recur. There are a lot of trades here, but this doesn't make sense of them. Instead of cheer leading, ask the simple question of where has money been made on China trades, and where has money been lost.

  • CN

    Charles N.

    20 10 2018 01:32

    3       0

    With so much content (noise) in the world today, an interview like this illustrates why RV is head and shoulders above anyone else in financial media. If only every day was a Friday!

  • JL

    John L.

    20 10 2018 00:47

    0       0

    Just went back to my notes on Kyle's interview with Raoul last year.....He was "Spot on" with so many of his macro calls.

  • LK

    Lyle K.

    20 10 2018 00:22

    0       0

    Kyle Bass the master of thinking of the unfathomable. He nailed 07-08 GFC by seeing something that 99.9% of the world missed. His thoroughness always amazes me, it is no wonder why he is one of the best on earth at what he does.

  • CG

    Chase G.

    19 10 2018 22:41

    5       0

    Dear RV team being able to play these videos streaming in the background on an apple device or better yet do picture in picture in the background would be super chill. Thx, great interview!

  • SS

    Sam S.

    19 10 2018 21:41

    5       0

    I'm far more encouraged to hear Washington is well aware of the situation with China, as many of us feel Washington has lost it's way in protecting America/citizens. No question much of our country has been sold down the river and maybe the flow of funds buying influence will be drying up to those doing the selling? I have some of those nickles Kyle talked about in a former interview years back and still worth at least a nickle. Principle protected. Rest of the drama around the world might be a distraction to the real action/risk coming from China/Asia.

  • CC

    Christopher C.

    19 10 2018 21:25

    7       0

    One of the biggest macro differences I have noticed amongst the lion's share of the Titans that RealVision has interviewed, and those great men, whose interviews I have watched closely over the years in other places, is the willingness by the self-made to discuss morality, and the implications of morality at all levels of finance, government, and personhood, etc. A person that makes himself something from nothing, or with little or no advantage to start in life, knows something about himself that someone who has held high station, in part or whole by birth, can never possess. Some fewer can even observe and reflect on the matter dispassionately.

  • GC

    George C.

    19 10 2018 20:24

    1       0

    At 51 minutes, Kyle hits on a major point but it doesn't get due time or attention (perhaps because it is contrary to the narrative that it's white hats vs the black hats). In any case, as usual Kyle informs and stimulates thinking. Hope there is a subsequent interview covering investments topics putting China to the side.

  • AK

    Ai K.

    19 10 2018 20:21

    4       14

    I don't understand why he is using aggressive words like "stealing" or "China makes people go away". Please keep the talk professional, not propaganda. This is Realvision, not Trumpvision. I know Kyle Bass has been wrong about China for many years. China may be going through a tough time in the short term, but they can come out ahead in the long run.

  • DS

    David S.

    19 10 2018 19:46

    0       0

    Is it reasonable to believe that the drop in Hong Kong reserves will drive Hong Kong to drop the dollar peg, which no longer makes sense, and peg to the Yuan? Is this playing into the Chinese hands or is it part of China's strategy to merge Hong Kong into China proper? How many Hong Kong banks have branches or head offices in Singapore? DLS

  • DS

    David S.

    19 10 2018 19:19

    0       0

    The real Bank of China is the Chinese Government that controls all the levers of China's financial assets. What would happen if you factored in all of its financial resources to make your calculations on risk? DLS

  • TP

    Tucker P.

    19 10 2018 18:48

    3       0

    One of the most intelligent conversations unpacking an incredibly complex subject I have ever seen. Kyle's broad perspective is matched only by his knowledge of granular detail. Great job Grant.

  • DD

    Daniel D.

    19 10 2018 17:55

    3       7

    It seems like Kyle is becoming a one trick pony (China). This topic is getting a little long in the tooth. If his thesis is correct (and I'm not saying it is or isn't) and it takes a decade to play out, will he be able to say he was was right? I can tell you it will rain in the desert, tell you for years how and why it will and when it does eight years from now everyone will think I'm so smart? It seems he's been on RV and other places forever pontificating this story. Again, nothing whatsoever against him or his convictions.

  • BM

    Beth M.

    19 10 2018 17:17

    1       0

    Fantasic...always appreciate (to the Nth degree) Kyle's insights...shining lights on doors that we continue to see opening and being able to understand why certain doors are opening! Thank you

  • BP

    Bryce P.

    19 10 2018 16:47

    1       12

    I’d have to watch this first but I can’t imagine I’m going to agree with Kyle on his China thoughts. I just think he’s dead wrong on China. I like Kyle and enjoy listening to him but he’s just dead wrong on China pure and simple.

  • MC

    Minum C.

    19 10 2018 16:16

    7       15

    This interview comes across as being too politically biased for me to place any weight on what is actually being said. I down voted it. It seems fitting for Grant to be wearing red socks for an interview on China. Perhaps it will bring him good fortune in the gold market in the coming years.

  • GF

    George F.

    19 10 2018 16:10

    1       1

    " China to ascend in the WTO in 2001. We lost 4 million jobs "

    2001 something else happened that year. Oh, The Forever War started. Is it possible that China agreed to the whole craziness in exchange for a favorable commerce environment? BTW, how is it that you never hear anyone talking about the forever war as driving finance and the economy.

    Hong Kong. I never have been there but I loved the movies. Did China destroy the HK film industry?

    "I think they know more about the bigger picture than we'll ever know" Conspiracy theory?

    " one of the preeminent thinkers in the hedge fund community" I think some humility is due, search on [kyle bass nickels] for details.

  • JG

    John G.

    19 10 2018 15:44

    2       0

    Thank you, Grant and Kyle for the illuminating update on China.

  • PR

    Pedro R.

    19 10 2018 15:06

    11       0

    Great interview one of best narrators of China problem.
    It should be a two hours interview. My only criticism is that probably I will have to wait another year to see a new interview with Kyle in Real Vision.

  • ZH

    Zayd H.

    19 10 2018 13:48

    4       0

    Kyle/Grant - great interview. I was hoping the interview was going to be more about Kyle's take on his interview with Graham Allison. Instead it seemed more of a well-reasoned argument as to the bear case for RMB.

    My interpretation of Kyle's thoughts in this interview here, as it pertains to the USA / China Thucydides Trap, is that the likely outcome is war. This is based on statements by Kyle such as "we are funding Chinese warships", "we will seek reparations for IP theft", etc. But that is just me tee'ing up what I hope is an addendum interview with Kyle...

  • CR

    Carmen R.

    19 10 2018 13:37

    9       0

    Kyle is great. But Grants interviewing skills are second to none!

  • XP

    X P.

    19 10 2018 13:24

    7       1

    This interview is Gold!

  • RS

    Ruben S.

    19 10 2018 13:16

    1       0

    Very interesting interview, and as always with Mr Bass very detailed analysis. i m just surprised that you focus so much into Current account shrinkage to justify the timing of the Chines bobble burst without mentioning the "risk" that they could get their Dollars through the capital account. And being such a big economy (enough to be it only in terms of size) you have A LOT of dollars willing to get there just to match portfolio exposure to share of global GDP. Hence, don't you think the Chines could delay the burst quit a lot if they open completely the capital account ?

  • JS

    John S.

    19 10 2018 12:07

    4       0


  • AR

    Abishek R.

    19 10 2018 11:43

    20       2

    Very well moderated discussion by G Williams. However, in the China vs. USA coverage, Real Vision is almost only covering one side of the story for the past year, so while useful its not the complete picture.

    How about somebody like Kiril Sokoloff / G Williams travelling to Beijing or Shanghai with a Chinese interpreter and speaking with Chinese economists about their view of the situation and why they feel this will ultimately end with USD crashing or USA unable to finance itself.

  • Nv

    Nick v.

    19 10 2018 10:57

    3       2

    You put a duty on an imported product, priced in USD.
    The US company tells you it will pass this price increase on the imported good onto consumers.
    You believe it will cause no price increase for US consumers.

  • CM

    Carlos M.

    19 10 2018 10:45

    5       0

    great interview!!! only one question I know China has invested for over a decade in EM countries in order to have better access to raw materials, if their main problem is the CA turning into a deficit and not having USD to finance China inc, isnt it possible that they start a parrallel market in CNY to buy Oil for example from the saudi, iran russia venezuela, etc? This particularly so when Trump has given a clear message of World trade as a 0 sum game and every man for himself. Is it just an unfeasible task to replace the dollar as the commodities denominator?

  • CL

    Charles L.

    19 10 2018 10:43

    2       0

    Speachless...Grant, you bring out the best of those you interview. Outstanding. P.S: wonderful socks!!

  • JS

    John S.

    19 10 2018 10:11

    5       0


  • EA

    Eldon A.

    19 10 2018 09:06

    4       1

    Great interview