Update: and there it is - at precisely 2:39pm, a TICK print of 1775 was registered, signifying the biggest buy program of all time. Now, the only question - is this the real "pension buying" deal... or someone trying to fake out the algos into buying and trapped shorts into covering. The one problem with today's buying fury: a burst of record buy orders only managed to push the Dow Jones 200 points higher, far less than yesterday's 800+ point frenzy, which means that there are far more sellers into this ramp than yesterday.
And another problem: a hint that today's move is merely a fake out is that unlike yesterday's true reallocation out of Treasurys and into stocks, today's the 10Y has barely budged during the stock surge.
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"Will they, or won't they" - that's the question on every trader's mind.
In the last two days, massive buy orders driven by pension reallocation trades sent stocks soaring (something even Bloomberg now admits was the catalyst for the surge) in late day trading, and with less than 2 hours left to go in today's session, all traders wanted to know is whether pensions funds would make it a three-peat.
And while we don't know if it is indeed pensions, or someone merely frontrunning today's forced buying - or perhaps just pretending to be them - at precisely 2:05pm, the NYSE TICK - an indicator showing relative strength of buy and sell orders - just hit 1,735, the second highest reading on record, as an absolutely gargnatuan buy order hit...
... sending stocks to session highs.
Putting today's massive buy program burst in context, within just 15 minutes, we had three TICK prints that were 1,631 or higher. As a reminder, yesterday's high TICK print - which helped send the Dow nearly 900 points higher - of 1,662 was the 4th largest buy order of all time. That means that today alone we have had three absolutely massive buy programs all within just minutes of each other.
While this was a little early considering yesterday the pension bid emerged at precisely 2:30pm, perhaps pension fund managers decided to be "less predictable" today and start the buying earlier. Alternatively, it may be a trader posing as a "pension", hoping to spark upward momentum into which to dump positions.
In any case, keep a close eye on the TICK - if this is a fake breakout, we may see some truly historic downward TICK prints over the next 90 minutes.