VIX Contango Piledrives Levels From Last Pre-Market Peak

Tyler Durden's picture

On April 15, the VIX contango hit its heretofore steepest of the year. What happened immediately afterward was a peak in the market followed by a plunge, and the flash crash, coupled with a massive flattening of the curve. What also happened was unprecedented pain for Goldman, which had been pushing the Variance Swap so hard, it ended up with residual inventory on its flow (but not prop) desk, resulting in a major loss for the firm once the curve flattened. Yet anyone who thought that Goldman's Delta One prop desk would ever lose money, should just look at today's ridiculous VIX curve which is now trading at a steepness unseen in years. More than obviously someone is pushing very hard on the spot, while ignoring or buying the mid and long end. And as we expected earlier this week, the only driver for stocks right now is what is happening in VIX land, driven by the near record open interest, which is now so disconnected from the volatility in all other assets (FX, bonds), it is beyond deplorable. Yet perfectly expected: with no volume, one market maker can do with the market entirely as they see fit.