Contents of the INST.TXT file
WELCOME TO MASTER THE MARKET!
This is a fast moving stock market game for 1 to 10 players that
closely simulates real market conditions. Players buy and sell from
among a selection of 10 blue chip stocks to see who can accumulate the
most wealth. The game uses some exciting graphics, including stock
price bar charts and a simulation of the NYSE ticker tape.News
events, randomly selected, have an effect on the day's market.
Because the behavior of each of the ten stocks is randomly and
independently generated, no two game sessions will ever be the same.
The program also maintains each player's portfolio. At the end of
a "trading day", each player's portfolio is appraised for net worth,
and his/her performance as an investment manager is ranked with the
Master the Market can be played on two levels of sophistication:
1.A regular cash purchase game, 2. A more sophisticated level that
allows players to buy stock on margin and sell stock short.
Master the Market could be considered an educational program for
novice investors who are learning how to "play the market". The
simulation is realistic enough to teach some important lessons before
real money is commited to the real stock market.
IBM PC and compatibles:
Master the Market was designed to run on the IBM PC. To start the
program from the operating system, type MARKET and hit .
Master the Market also runs on the Tandy 2000.To start the
program from the operating system, type MARKET and hit .
Answer the "sound disable" question with a YES during the beginning of
TI Professional Computer:
Master the Market also runs on the TI PC. You must be running
MS-DOS 2.1 or higher. Type EMULATE (from the operating system) and
hit , then type MARKET and hit to start the game. As
with the Tandy 2000, you must answer the "sound disable" question with
Master the Market requires 128K of memory and 1 disk drive. It
works on both monochrome and graphics type display monitors. The
program comes without an instruction manual, because all that the
players need to know is contained in the first four display screens
after starting the program. Like "checkers", the rules are simple and
easy to learn, but the strategies are numerous and challenging.
Note: It would be a good idea to make a copy of your Master the
Market diskette, especially onto a "system" diskette. (Master the
Market may have been given to you on a "non-system" diskette.) Label
a blank diskette, format it using the FORMAT/S command, and use COPY
*.* to move all the Master the Market files onto this new diskette.
Store the original in a safe place and use your new "working copy".
A few basic stock market terms will now be explained:
LONG: After you buy shares of a stock, you are said to be holding
a long position in the stock until you sell it.
SHORT:Stocks can be sold short in anticipation of falling
prices. Short selling is the antithesis of the normal process:
Normally you buy shares, hold them for a period of time, then sell
them (hopefully at a higher price). With short selling you sell
(borrowed shares) first, hold your short position for a period of
time, then buy back the shares (hopefully at a lower price). "Cover"
is the term used to describe the buying back of short shares.
Short selling can be a means of playing "the downside" of the
market for gains, rather than just sitting it out with cash. Short
selling can also be a means of hedging (reducing the risk) of a mostly
long portfolio. This would be accomplished by shorting the shares of
one or more companies that look like their shares may fall, at the
same time that you hold long positions in some of the stronger looking
BUYING ON MARGIN: Trading on margin is, by its very nature, more
speculative than trading on cash. Buying securities on margin simply
means that your broker loans you part of the purchase price on your
security transactions. The amount of this loan or "margin" is based
on a percentage of the asset value of your margin account.
Margin requirement rules are governed by the Federal Reserve Board
and the various exchanges.Brokerage houses may add their own res-
trictions.Master the Market uses the following typical requirements:
The maximum loan value in a margin accunt is 50% of the account
asset value (equity). For example, if you have $5,000 equity in your
account (net of security values and cash balance), you may open as
much as $10,000 worth of stock positions, long or short. (The $5,000
balance is effectively borrowed from your broker.)
In addition to initial margin requirements, your account is
subject to margin maintenance requirements. This means that if your
equity falls below a certain amount due to a change in the market
value of the securities in your margin account, you will be required
to close some positions in order to reduce your market exposure.
The margin maintenance level is 30% of the market value of the
security positions in your account. If your equity falls below the
30% maintenance requirement, you will be required to sell some long
positions and/or cover some short positions in order to raise your
equity percentage above 35%.
SHORTING AGAINST THE BOX: This refers to the practice of selling
short shares of a stock in which you already have a long position.
Master the Market does not allow shorting against the box, since it
does not allow simultaneous long and short positions in the same stock
in any player's portfolio.
A FEW FINAL WORDS ABOUT MASTER THE MARKET
The key to success in Master the Market is going with the trends.
You will want to go LONG on stocks moving up and/or go SHORT on stocks
moving down. Trends are not always easy to identify, however. It is
easy to be "faked out". The challenge is to differentiate between the
real moves and the fake ones.
Cut your losses quickly when it becomes apparent that an invest-
ment has gone sour. Don't ride it into the pits. Salvage your cash
for another opportunity.
When reading the charts, don't be fooled into thinking that just
because a stock has reached the bottom of its chart that the stock has
gone as low as it can go. It can go still lower! Master the Market
can (and will) simply re-scale the vertical axis.
The same is true on the upside.
Finally, since a commission is charged on all buy and sell orders,
you are cautioned against "over-trading". Plan to hold a position for
at least a few days when you open it. Buying and selling every day
doesn't usually pay off.
INSTRUCTIONS FOR DUPLICATING "MASTER THE MARKET"
To copy Master the Market, you may either use the DISKCOPY command
or the COPY *.* command. If you use the COPY *.* command the destina-
tion disk must first be formatted.Formatting with the /S option, to
make it a "system" disk, is recommended. ("System" disks are less
hastle for everyday use, because you can start the computer with them,
and they don't cause the computer to say "Insert DOS disk in drive A
and strike any key when ready" every time you exit a program.)
However, if you are making a copy to give someone else, the
passing of a DOS disk may violate DOS copyrights unless the recepient
already owns the specific DOS version you are giving him/her. If in
doubt, give Master the Market on a "non-system" disk.
Note: Be sure to transfer all four Master the Market files when
making a copy, whether for yourself or for someone else. These files
* * * END OF INSTRUCTIONS * * *