Definition of Fight The Tape

What does the term "don't fight the tape" mean? What is the definition of the term "don't fight the tape"?

If an investor "fights the tape", this means that they are betting against a prevailing trend.

Definition of Fight The Tape - Financial Dictionary - Stock Market - Illustration - Opposite ArrowsFor instance - let's say that shares of Apple have run up into their earnings report for the past eight quarters in a row.

Let's also say that, for some strange reason, you decide that the trend isn't going to continue. Instead of buying shares of Apple a week before earnings, which has been a profitable play for eight quarters in a row, you decide to short Apple instead.

This is a classic example of "fighting the tape". The trend is clearly that Apple runs up into its earnings, based on the thought that Apple has a history of surprising to the upside and subsequently trading higher after their earnings report.

Shorting shares of Apple would clearly be a case of "fighting the tape".

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