Leveraged exchange traded funds or ETF’s….These financiers. Morbidly earthbound figures, weighed down by the heavy change in their pockets. Without that primitive anchor of coin rooting them to the soil, they would float away into a void, a kind of mystic farewell, eventually dissolving like a cloud.
But, are they evanescent figures or simply indestructible individualists, the sacred genes of a subculture. They appear marked by death, but somehow intact and indomitable on the thrones of their annual meetings. Disintegrating looking and simultaneously, majestic, self-assured and integrated. Despite all the ambiguity,the Soros’s and Paulson’s are authentically who they are: self-identified wheeler-dealers rather than role-playing hacks. They do recall D. W. Winnicott’s True Self,being rooted in spontaneous gestures and personal ideas, in what they perceive as a false world that has abandoned them to stoke the mythology of the lonesome individualist working outside the boundaries of history.
Yes, these men, the Bloomberg types; they confront in their physicality and penetrate us with their eyes,the eyes of the occupier. As figures, they are symbols of endurance in what seems an unbearable world. Static, with an ambiguous aura of abandonment, nobility and even detachment; emptiness and emancipated: connected together to the fact they are devoid of empathy and incapable of relating to the other. Ultimately their form undoes themselves, shriveling into little more than specks crawling in a profound, bottomless, dark void…
Did you watch the markets on Monday? In the last 18 minutes of trading, the Standard & Poor’s 500-stock index jumped more than 10 points with no news to account for the rally. If you were left scratching your head, you were not alone. Almost every day there is an article in the newspaper trying to explain the stock market’s wild swings, or volatility, and often the explanation is inconclusive, involving everything from Europe’s banking problems to new fears of recessions….
Through the summer and into the fall, I, too, have been pondering the gyrations in trading, especially the late-day sell-offs and rallies that seem always timed perfectly to coincide with the closing bell. Rarely do the rallies or sell-offs, which invariably start after 3 p.m., justify 3 to 4 percent moves in the indexes. The swings have a deleterious effect on the markets because they undermine confidence and investors start sitting on the sidelines.Read More:http://dealbook.nytimes.com/2011/10/10/volatility-thy-name-is-e-t-f/
…To Mr. Kass, these E.T.F.’s are the “new weapons of mass destruction.” (His description is an homage to Warren Buffett’s widely quoted line that derivatives are “weapons of mass destruction.”) “They’ve have turned the market into a casino on steroids,” Mr. Kass said. “They accentuate the moves in every direction — the upside and the downside.”
Mr. Kass, who has written about this topic for TheStreet.com, may be right: at the end of every day, leveraged E.T.F.’s have to re-balance themselves by buying and selling millions of shares within minutes to remain properly weighted. If the E.T.F. made
ey that day, to remain balanced it has to reinvest the proceeds and leverage them again. In many cases, leveraged E.T.F.’s use options, swaps and index futures to keep themselves in balance.
You might consider the E.T.F. the new derivative.Read More:http://dealbook.nytimes.com/2011/10/10/volatility-thy-name-is-e-t-f/
I took an informal poll of a half dozen brand-name fund managers and virtually all of them agreed with Mr. Kass. But some of them said that high-frequency traders, which themselves trade E.T.F.’s, could be magnifying the problem. “We know E.T.F.’s are the dominant factor in the marketplace,” Mr. Kass said. “In the ’70s and ’80s it was the mutual funds, in early 2000s it was the hedge funds. Now it’s the algorithms running the E.T.F.’s.” Read More:http://dealbook.nytimes.com/2011/10/10/volatility-thy-name-is-e-t-f/
Jonathan McIntosh: The mashup adds a new layer of text to re-re-contextualize the commercial’s message turning it (back) into a rallying cry for youth revolt. I say “turning it back” because the Levi’s ad, called Levi’s Legacy shamelessly co-opts Charles Bukowski’s anti-establishment poem The Laughing Heart and re-purposes it to sell their brand….
…Ironically Levi’s was recently forced to pull the ad in the UK after public outcry when thousands of disenfranchised youth (who are being crushed by social cuts and austerity measures) decided to “go forth” and riot, for real. Levi’s might want to reconsider their marking strategy on this side of the Atlantic too in light of the Occupy Wall Street inspired protests sweeping the nation. Read More:http://www.politicalremixvideo.com/