Markets have been uneasy for a rather long time now. Well, uneasy is perhaps a mild way to put it. Markets have been uneasy for the last few months, maybe, but just over a year ago markets were in a full-blown panic. Thankfully those crazy times have passed. Over the last two weeks, we’ve even seen the VIX below 20, which is something that has not happened in a mighty long time. Lower volatility signals higher risk appetite and we think a VIX below 20 signals risk on in equity markets.
Markets bounced hard in the second half of last week. It’s almost hard to believe how fast things are changing in the current landscape. Although there are so very many reasons to be cautious, if not flat out bearish, the market is just pulling its ears back and making its way higher despite the conditions of the world around it. Thus, given the strong footing the market ended on last week, and of course the charts, we think that we’ll likely see new highs in the week ahead.
Over the last few weeks, markets have remained rather strong in the face of many challenges. Last week we finally got confirmation that more stimulus cheques are in the mail for Americans, although it seems that $1.9 trillion was not enough to help equity indices end the week in the green. Risks remain elevated and volatility is stubbornly not abating, thus we are starting to think that it is time for a pullback. There are a few long indeas in precious metals and commodities, but for the most part, caution is advised.
Well, after all that bearishness, all we got was one day of #marketcrash trending on twitter and a bounce so glorious I’m sure people will be singing songs about it at some point in the future. It seems that ‘buy the dip’ is not dead just yet. In truth, the irrationality of this whole market is starting to scare me a little, although I am not going to fight the ‘buy the dip’ crowd.
Very often it’s better to not listen to the news, or the hype of all the mad things happening in the world around us. Most of the time, it’s better to just sit down and focus on the things that we can measure. So to a large extend we try to do that this week, although we must admit the the blue wave in the U.S. is probably the primary driver behind the strength we saw last week. It’s very likely going to be the source of a whole lot more strength in the week ahead.
There are still a few weeks to go before Christmas, but hopes of a Santa Rally are starting to take root. For now, most of our watch-list still appears bullish, although there are some warning signs. We could be seeing some early signs of fading momentum on the major indices, although it might still be too soon to tell.
The exuberance of markets can never be underestimated. “Stonks only go up” has become a meme. But we know that memes have the power to influence millions of people. As long as the market is trading from vaccine headline to vaccine headline, we can expect that markets will probably keep pushing higher and people will likely keep chanting “stonks only go up”.
It seems that there are a ton of people out there trading the oil price in some way or another. Most people of course have either been getting involved with Sasol or have been thinking about it. We’ve received a ton of requests from all over, from people asking about the oil price and particularly about Sasol.
We suspect that over the next few weeks and months, mainstream media is going to get swept up in the ‘all about Bitcoin’ narrative. More importantly, Thanksgiving sets off a number of seasonal patterns as well. We need to combine several of them for one trade.
Finally the US election is behind us! We’ll still see how far Trump goes to contest the election outcome, but so far it seems the the courts are not entertaining the idea. So ok, Biden wins, what now? It is reasonable to expect that more COVID related stimulus will done and the Dollar should keep weakening on that. This likely leads to more ZAR strength and might direct some investment flows into emerging markets.