"Smart Money" flow is shifting in a disturbingly similar pattern to those seen at the prior 2 cyclical tops...
Instead of allocating capital to expensive tail risk bets on direct asset class collapse (in equities, credit, and commodities), it appears, just as we detailed previously, the 'smartest money in the room' is "betting" indirectly on a stock market crash through eurodollar options.
The Numbers Are In: Hedge Funds Furiously Dumped The Rally; Selling Was "Biggest In Nearly Two Years"Submitted by Tyler Durden on 02/02/2016 12:27 -0500
"Net sales last week by hedge funds were the biggest in nearly two years and the fourth-largest in our data history. This follows near-record levels of net buying by this group in early January."
"Please, PEPPER SPRAY ALL THE ATTENDEES OF DAVOS in order to halt the rape of taxpayers and consumers across the globe. This annual conclave is responsible for more wealth destruction and the widening disparity in GINI coefficients than any public policy."
"Assuming selling in accordance to the average allocation of FX Reserve Managers and SWF across asset classes, we estimate that the sales of bonds by oil producing countries will increase from -$45bn in 2015 to -$110bn in 2016 and that the sales of public equities will increase from -$10bn in 2015 to -$75bn in 2016."
“Fed Chair Janet Yellen will be forced to either acknowledge labor market tightening as reason to continue with the four-hike schedule for 2016 or risk her credibility, belittle job market stability and sound a warning about the risks of lower oil prices and cheap gasoline (sacrilege to regular Americans) by slowing the hiking pace after a single 0.25 percent increase last month. If she gets it wrong, things could get ugly fast."
The default of Sherwin Alumina, a US subsidiary of Glencore, refocused the market's attention on the one company which in September was among the hardest hit in the post-China devaluation rout, and the immediate result was that while Glencore stock plunged and is once again approaching all time lows, a more ominous development was that GLEN's CDS spiked to as much as 950 basis points, the highest since April 2009 and suggesting far more pain is in store for the commodity trading giant.
"As more companies cross the Rubicon out of the buyback zone, the bid for their equity shrivels. For the 2013 financial year, 60% of stocks in my sample were in good shape to gear-up for buybacks. By the end of 2015, just 35% of the sample were in good shape to do buybacks."
One of the (many) fascinating things about this latest global financial crisis is that there’s no single catalyst. Unlike 2008 when the carnage could be traced back to US subprime housing, or 2000 when tech stocks crashed and pulled down everything else, this time around a whole bunch of seemingly-unrelated things are unraveling all at once.
Yesterday, in keeping with what has become a daily tradition, we asked a simple question: "Which hedge fund will close today." It turns out that despite our intention, the question was not rhetorical because just a few hours later Bloomberg answered, when it reported that the latest hedge fund casualty was another iconic, long-term investor: Scott Bommer's SAB Capital, which as of a year ago managed $1.1 billion, and which is now returning all outside money.
Perhaps mom and pop investors should show the following chart to their financial advisors, who directly or indirectly work for these institutions, and ask them: why should they be buying, when the counterparty they are buying from is, most likely, this very same financial advisor?
"Last week, during which the S&P 500 rallied 2.8%, BofAML clients were net sellers of US stocks for the second week, in the amount of $0.7bn. (Globally, our colleagues who track EPFR flow data have noted flows out of the US but into Europe and Japan in recent weeks). Net sales were chiefly due to institutional clients last week, who have sold stocks for eight consecutive weeks. Buybacks by corporate clients decelerated vs. the prior week, and YTD are tracking over $40bn, below last year’s record $45bn." So the smart money was selling, companies were not buying back, and stocks rallied nearly 3%.
There’s only one investment we can think of that many people either love or hate reflexively, almost without regard to market performance: gold. And, to a lesser degree, silver. It’s strange that these two metals provoke such powerful psychological reactions - especially among people who dislike them. Nobody has an instinctive hatred of iron, copper, aluminum, or cobalt. The reason, of course, is that the main use of gold has always been as money. And people have strong feelings about money. From an economic viewpoint, however, money is just a medium of exchange and a store of value. Efforts to turn it into a political football invariably are signs of a hidden agenda, or perhaps a psychological aberration. So, let’s take some recent statements, assertions, and opinions that have been promulgated in the media and analyze them.
For the first time ever, S&P 100 traders are holding more than 3 put options for every call.