China's central bank asked lenders to check margin trading

The dollar standard and how the Fed itself created the perfect setup for a stock market crash

Disclaimer: This is neither financial nor trading advice and everyone should trade based on their own risk tolerance. Please leverage yourself accordingly. When you're done, ask yourself: "Am I jacked to the tits?". If the answer is "yes", you're good to go.
We're probably experiencing the wildest markets in our lifetime. After doing some research and listening to opinions by several people, I wanted to share my own view on what happened in the market and what could happen in the future. There's no guarantee that the future plays out as I describe it or otherwise I'd become very rich.
If you just want tickers and strikes...I don't know if this is going to help you. But anyways, scroll way down to the end. My current position is TLT 171c 8/21, opened on Friday 7/31 when TLT was at 170.50.
This is a post trying to describe what it means that we've entered the "dollar standard" decades ago after leaving the gold standard. Furthermore I'll try to explain how the "dollar standard" is the biggest reason behind the 2008 and 2020 financial crisis, stock market crashes and how the Coronavirus pandemic was probably the best catalyst for the global dollar system to blow up.

Tackling the Dollar problem

Throughout the month of July we've seen the "death of the Dollar". At least that's what WSB thinks. It's easy to think that especially since it gets reiterated in most media outlets. I will take the contrarian view. This is a short-term "downturn" in the Dollar and very soon the Dollar will rise a lot against the Euro - supported by the Federal Reserve itself.US dollar Index (DXY)If you zoom out to the 3Y chart you'll see what everyone is being hysterical about. The dollar is dying! It was that low in 2018! This is the end! The Fed has done too much money printing! Zimbabwe and Weimar are coming to the US.
There is more to it though. The DXY is dominated by two currency rates and the most important one by far is EURUSD.EURUSD makes up 57.6% of the DXY
And we've seen EURUSD rise from 1.14 to 1.18 since July 21st, 2020. Why that date? On that date the European Commission (basically the "government" of the EU) announced that there was an agreement for the historical rescue package for the EU. That showed the markets that the EU seems to be strong and resilient, it seemed to be united (we're not really united, trust me as an European) and therefore there are more chances in the EU, the Euro and more chances taking risks in the EU.Meanwhile the US continued to struggle with the Coronavirus and some states like California went back to restricting public life. The US economy looked weaker and therefore the Euro rose a lot against the USD.
From a technical point of view the DXY failed to break the 97.5 resistance in June three times - DXY bulls became exhausted and sellers gained control resulting in a pretty big selloff in the DXY.

Why the DXY is pretty useless

Considering that EURUSD is the dominant force in the DXY I have to say it's pretty useless as a measurement of the US dollar. Why? Well, the economy is a global economy. Global trade is not dominated by trade between the EU and the USA. There are a lot of big exporting nations besides Germany, many of them in Asia. We know about China, Japan, South Korea etc. Depending on the business sector there are a lot of big exporters in so-called "emerging markets". For example, Brazil and India are two of the biggest exporters of beef.
Now, what does that mean? It means that we need to look at the US dollar from a broader perspective. Thankfully, the Fed itself provides a more accurate Dollar index. It's called the "Trade Weighted U.S. Dollar Index: Broad, Goods and Services".
When you look at that index you will see that it didn't really collapse like the DXY. In fact, it still is as high as it was on March 10, 2020! You know, only two weeks before the stock market bottomed out. How can that be explained?

Global trade, emerging markets and global dollar shortage

Emerging markets are found in countries which have been shifting away from their traditional way of living towards being an industrial nation. Of course, Americans and most of the Europeans don't know how life was 300 years ago.China already completed that transition. Countries like Brazil and India are on its way. The MSCI Emerging Market Index lists 26 countries. Even South Korea is included.
However there is a big problem for Emerging Markets: the Coronavirus and US Imports.The good thing about import and export data is that you can't fake it. Those numbers speak the truth. You can see that imports into the US haven't recovered to pre-Corona levels yet. It will be interesting to see the July data coming out on August 5th.Also you can look at exports from Emerging Market economies. Let's take South Korean exports YoY. You can see that South Korean exports are still heavily depressed compared to a year ago. Global trade hasn't really recovered.For July the data still has to be updated that's why you see a "0.0%" change right now.Less US imports mean less US dollars going into foreign countries including Emerging Markets.Those currency pairs are pretty unimpressed by the rising Euro. Let's look at a few examples. Use the 1Y chart to see what I mean.
Indian Rupee to USDBrazilian Real to USDSouth Korean Won to USD
What do you see if you look at the 1Y chart of those currency pairs? There's no recovery to pre-COVID levels. And this is pretty bad for the global financial system. Why? According to the Bank of International Settlements there is $12.6 trillion of dollar-denominated debt outside of the United States. Now the Coronavirus comes into play where economies around the world are struggling to go back to their previous levels while the currencies of Emerging Markets continue to be WEAK against the US dollar.
This is very bad. We've already seen the IMF receiving requests for emergency loans from 80 countries on March 23th. What are we going to see? We know Argentina has defaulted on their debt more than once and make jokes about it. But what happens if we see 5 Argentinas? 10? 20? Even 80?
Add to that that global travel is still depressed, especially for US citizens going anywhere. US citizens traveling to other countries is also a situation in which the precious US dollars would enter Emerging Market economies. But it's not happening right now and it won't happen unless we actually get a miracle treatment or the virus simply disappears.
This is where the treasury market comes into play. But before that, let's quickly look at what QE (rising Fed balance sheet) does to the USD.
Take a look at the Trade-Weighted US dollar Index. Look at it at max timeframe - you'll see what happened in 2008. The dollar went up (shocker).Now let's look at the Fed balance sheet at max timeframe. You will see: as soon as the Fed starts the QE engine, the USD goes UP, not down! September 2008 (Fed first buys MBS), March 2009, March 2020. Is it just a coincidence? No, as I'll explain below. They're correlated and probably even in causation.Oh and in all of those scenarios the stock market crashed...compared to February 2020, the Fed balance sheet grew by ONE TRILLION until March 25th, but the stock market had just finished crashing...can you please prove to me that QE makes stock prices go up? I think I've just proven the opposite correlation.

Bonds, bills, Gold and "inflation"

People laugh at bond bulls or at people buying bonds due to the dropping yields. "Haha you're stupid you're buying an asset which matures in 10 years and yields 5.3% STONKS go up way more!".Let me stop you right there.
Why do you buy stocks? Will you hold those stocks until you die so that you regain your initial investment through dividends? No. You buy them because you expect them to go up based on fundamental analysis, news like earnings or other things. Then you sell them when you see your price target reached. The assets appreciated.Why do you buy options? You don't want to hold them until expiration unless they're -90% (what happens most of the time in WSB). You wait until the underlying asset does what you expect it does and then you sell the options to collect the premium. Again, the assets appreciated.
It's the exact same thing with treasury securities. The people who've been buying bonds for the past years or even decades didn't want to wait until they mature. Those people want to sell the bonds as they appreciate. Bond prices have an inverse relationship with their yields which is logical when you think about it. Someone who desperately wants and needs the bonds for various reasons will accept to pay a higher price (supply and demand, ya know) and therefore accept a lower yield.
By the way, both JP Morgan and Goldmans Sachs posted an unexpected profit this quarter, why? They made a killing trading bonds.
US treasury securities are the most liquid asset in the world and they're also the safest asset you can hold. After all, if the US default on their debt you know that the world is doomed. So if US treasuries become worthless anything else has already become worthless.
Now why is there so much demand for the safest and most liquid asset in the world? That demand isn't new but it's caused by the situation the global economy is in. Trade and travel are down and probably won't recover anytime soon, emerging markets are struggling both with the virus and their dollar-denominated debt and central banks around the world struggle to find solutions for the problems in the financial markets.
How do we now that the markets aren't trusting central banks? Well, bonds tell us that and actually Gold tells us the same!
TLT chartGold spot price chart
TLT is an ETF which reflects the price of US treasuries with 20 or more years left until maturity. Basically the inverse of the 30 year treasury yield.
As you can see from the 5Y chart bonds haven't been doing much from 2016 to mid-2019. Then the repo crisis of September 2019took place and TLT actually rallied in August 2019 before the repo crisis finally occurred!So the bond market signaled that something is wrong in the financial markets and that "something" manifested itself in the repo crisis.
After the repo market crisis ended (the Fed didn't really do much to help it, before you ask), bonds again were quiet for three months and started rallying in January (!) while most of the world was sitting on their asses and downplaying the Coronavirus threat.
But wait, how does Gold come into play? The Gold chart basically follows the same pattern as the TLT chart. Doing basically nothing from 2016 to mid-2019. From June until August Gold rose a staggering 200 dollars and then again stayed flat until December 2019. After that, Gold had another rally until March when it finally collapsed.
Many people think rising Gold prices are a sign of inflation. But where is the inflation? We saw PCE price indices on Friday July 31st and they're at roughly 1%. We've seen CPIs from European countries and the EU itself. France and the EU (July 31st) as a whole had a very slight uptick in CPI while Germany (July 30th), Italy (July 31st) and Spain (July 30th) saw deflationary prints.There is no inflation, nowhere in the world. I'm sorry to burst that bubble.
Yet, Gold prices still go up even when the Dollar rallies through the DXY (sadly I have to measure it that way now since the trade-weighted index isn't updated daily) and we know that there is no inflation from a monetary perspective. In fact, Fed chairman JPow, apparently the final boss for all bears, said on Wednesday July 29th that the Coronavirus pandemic is a deflationary disinflationary event. Someone correct me there, thank you. But deflationary forces are still in place even if JPow wouldn't admit it.
To conclude this rather long section: Both bonds and Gold are indicators for an upcoming financial crisis. Bond prices should fall and yields should go up to signal an economic recovery. But the opposite is happening. in that regard heavily rising Gold prices are a very bad signal for the future. Both bonds and Gold are screaming: "The central banks haven't solved the problems".
By the way, Gold is also a very liquid asset if you want quick cash, that's why we saw it sell off in March because people needed dollars thanks to repo problems and margin calls.When the deflationary shock happens and another liquidity event occurs there will be another big price drop in precious metals and that's the dip which you could use to load up on metals by the way.

Dismantling the money printer

But the Fed! The M2 money stock is SHOOTING THROUGH THE ROOF! The printers are real!By the way, velocity of M2 was updated on July 30th and saw another sharp decline. If you take a closer look at the M2 stock you see three parts absolutely skyrocketing: savings, demand deposits and institutional money funds. Inflationary? No.
So, the printers aren't real. I'm sorry.Quantitative easing (QE) is the biggest part of the Fed's operations to help the economy get back on its feet. What is QE?Upon doing QE the Fed "purchases" treasury and mortgage-backed securities from the commercial banks. The Fed forces the commercial banks to hand over those securities and in return the commercial banks reserve additional bank reserves at an account in the Federal Reserve.
This may sound very confusing to everyone so let's make it simple by an analogy.I want to borrow a camera from you, I need it for my road trip. You agree but only if I give you some kind of security - for example 100 bucks as collateral.You keep the 100 bucks safe in your house and wait for me to return safely. You just wait and wait. You can't do anything else in this situation. Maybe my road trip takes a year. Maybe I come back earlier. But as long as I have your camera, the 100 bucks need to stay with you.
In this analogy, I am the Fed. You = commercial banks. Camera = treasuries/MBS. 100 bucks = additional bank reserves held at the Fed.

Revisiting 2008 briefly: the true money printers

The true money printers are the commercial banks, not the central banks. The commercial banks give out loans and demand interest payments. Through those interest payments they create money out of thin air! At the end they'll have more money than before giving out the loan.
That additional money can be used to give out more loans, buy more treasury/MBS Securities or gain more money through investing and trading.
Before the global financial crisis commercial banks were really loose with their policy. You know, the whole "Big Short" story, housing bubble, NINJA loans and so on. The reckless handling of money by the commercial banks led to actual money printing and inflation, until the music suddenly stopped. Bear Stearns went tits up. Lehman went tits up.
The banks learned from those years and completely changed, forever. They became very strict with their lending resulting in the Fed and the ECB not being able to raise their rates. By keeping the Fed funds rate low the Federal Reserve wants to encourage commercial banks to give out loans to stimulate the economy. But commercial banks are not playing along. They even accept negative rates in Europe rather than taking risks in the actual economy.
The GFC of 2008 completely changed the financial landscape and the central banks have struggled to understand that. The system wasn't working anymore because the main players (the commercial banks) stopped playing with each other. That's also the reason why we see repeated problems in the repo market.

How QE actually decreases liquidity before it's effective

The funny thing about QE is that it achieves the complete opposite of what it's supposed to achieve before actually leading to an economic recovery.
What does that mean? Let's go back to my analogy with the camera.
Before I take away your camera, you can do several things with it. If you need cash, you can sell it or go to a pawn shop. You can even lend your camera to someone for a daily fee and collect money through that.But then I come along and just take away your camera for a road trip for 100 bucks in collateral.
What can you do with those 100 bucks? Basically nothing. You can't buy something else with those. You can't lend the money to someone else. It's basically dead capital. You can just look at it and wait until I come back.
And this is what is happening with QE.
Commercial banks buy treasuries and MBS due to many reasons, of course they're legally obliged to hold some treasuries, but they also need them to make business.When a commercial bank has a treasury security, they can do the following things with it:- Sell it to get cash- Give out loans against the treasury security- Lend the security to a short seller who wants to short bonds
Now the commercial banks received a cash reserve account at the Fed in exchange for their treasury security. What can they do with that?- Give out loans against the reserve account
That's it. The bank had to give away a very liquid and flexible asset and received an illiquid asset for it. Well done, Fed.
The goal of the Fed is to encourage lending and borrowing through suppressing yields via QE. But it's not happening and we can see that in the H.8 data (assets and liabilities of the commercial banks).There is no recovery to be seen in the credit sector while the commercial banks continue to collect treasury securities and MBS. On one hand, they need to sell a portion of them to the Fed on the other hand they profit off those securities by trading them - remember JPM's earnings.
So we see that while the Fed is actually decreasing liquidity in the markets by collecting all the treasuries it has collected in the past, interest rates are still too high. People are scared, and commercial banks don't want to give out loans. This means that as the economic recovery is stalling (another whopping 1.4M jobless claims on Thursday July 30th) the Fed needs to suppress interest rates even more. That means: more QE. that means: the liquidity dries up even more, thanks to the Fed.
We heard JPow saying on Wednesday that the Fed will keep their minimum of 120 billion QE per month, but, and this is important, they can increase that amount anytime they see an emergency.And that's exactly what he will do. He will ramp up the QE machine again, removing more bond supply from the market and therefore decreasing the liquidity in financial markets even more. That's his Hail Mary play to force Americans back to taking on debt again.All of that while the government is taking on record debt due to "stimulus" (which is apparently only going to Apple, Amazon and Robinhood). Who pays for the government debt? The taxpayers. The wealthy people. The people who create jobs and opportunities. But in the future they have to pay more taxes to pay down the government debt (or at least pay for the interest). This means that they can't create opportunities right now due to the government going insane with their debt - and of course, there's still the Coronavirus.

"Without the Fed, yields would skyrocket"

This is wrong. The Fed has been keeping their basic level QE of 120 billion per month for months now. But ignoring the fake breakout in the beginning of June (thanks to reopening hopes), yields have been on a steady decline.
Let's take a look at the Fed's balance sheet.
The Fed has thankfully stayed away from purchasing more treasury bills (short term treasury securities). Bills are important for the repo market as collateral. They're the best collateral you can have and the Fed has already done enough damage by buying those treasury bills in March, destroying even more liquidity than usual.
More interesting is the point "notes and bonds, nominal". The Fed added 13.691 billion worth of US treasury notes and bonds to their balance sheet. Luckily for us, the US Department of Treasury releases the results of treasury auctions when they occur. On July 28th there was an auction for the 7 year treasury note. You can find the results under "Note -> Term: 7-year -> Auction Date 07/28/2020 -> Competitive Results PDF". Or here's a link.
What do we see? Indirect bidders, which are foreigners by the way, took 28 billion out of the total 44 billion. That's roughly 64% of the entire auction. Primary dealers are the ones which sell the securities to the commercial banks. Direct bidders are domestic buyers of treasuries.
The conclusion is: There's insane demand for US treasury notes and bonds by foreigners. Those US treasuries are basically equivalent to US dollars. Now dollar bears should ask themselves this question: If the dollar is close to a collapse and the world wants to get rid fo the US dollar, why do foreigners (i.e. foreign central banks) continue to take 60-70% of every bond auction? They do it because they desperately need dollars and hope to drive prices up, supported by the Federal Reserve itself, in an attempt to have the dollar reserves when the next liquidity event occurs.
So foreigners are buying way more treasuries than the Fed does. Final conclusion: the bond market has adjusted to the Fed being a player long time ago. It isn't the first time the Fed has messed around in the bond market.

How market participants are positioned

We know that commercial banks made good money trading bonds and stocks in the past quarter. Besides big tech the stock market is being stagnant, plain and simple. All the stimulus, stimulus#2, vaccinetalksgoingwell.exe, public appearances by Trump, Powell and their friends, the "money printing" (which isn't money printing) by the Fed couldn't push SPY back to ATH which is 339.08 btw.
Who can we look at? Several people but let's take Bill Ackman. The one who made a killing with Credit Default Swaps in March and then went LONG (he said it live on TV). Well, there's an update about him:Bill Ackman saying he's effectively 100% longHe says that around the 2 minute mark.
Of course, we shouldn't just believe what he says. After all he is a hedge fund manager and wants to make money. But we have to assume that he's long at a significant percentage - it doesn't even make sense to get rid of positions like Hilton when they haven't even recovered yet.
Then again, there are sources to get a peek into the positions of hedge funds, let's take Hedgopia.We see: Hedge funds are starting to go long on the 10 year bond. They are very short the 30 year bond. They are very long the Euro, very short on VIX futures and short on the Dollar.

Endgame

This is the perfect setup for a market meltdown. If hedge funds are really positioned like Ackman and Hedgopia describes, the situation could unwind after a liquidity event:The Fed increases QE to bring down the 30 year yield because the economy isn't recovering yet. We've already seen the correlation of QE and USD and QE and bond prices.That causes a giant short squeeze of hedge funds who are very short the 30 year bond. They need to cover their short positions. But Ackman said they're basically 100% long the stock market and nothing else. So what do they do? They need to sell stocks. Quickly. And what happens when there is a rapid sell-off in stocks? People start to hedge via put options. The VIX rises. But wait, hedge funds are short VIX futures, long Euro and short DXY. To cover their short positions on VIX futures, they need to go long there. VIX continues to go up and the prices of options go suborbital (as far as I can see).Also they need to get rid of Euro futures and cover their short DXY positions. That causes the USD to go up even more.
And the Fed will sit there and do their things again: more QE, infinity QE^2, dollar swap lines, repo operations, TARP and whatever. The Fed will be helpless against the forces of the market and have to watch the stock market burn down and they won't even realize that they created the circumstances for it to happen - by their programs to "help the economy" and their talking on TV. Do you remember JPow on 60minutes talking about how they flooded the world with dollars and print it digitally? He wanted us poor people to believe that the Fed is causing hyperinflation and we should take on debt and invest into the stock market. After all, the Fed has it covered.
But the Fed hasn't got it covered. And Powell knows it. That's why he's being a bear in the FOMC statements. He knows what's going on. But he can't do anything about it except what's apparently proven to be correct - QE, QE and more QE.

A final note about "stock market is not the economy"

It's true. The stock market doesn't reflect the current state of the economy. The current economy is in complete shambles.
But a wise man told me that the stock market is the reflection of the first and second derivatives of the economy. That means: velocity and acceleration of the economy. In retrospect this makes sense.
The economy was basically halted all around the world in March. Of course it's easy to have an insane acceleration of the economy when the economy is at 0 and the stock market reflected that. The peak of that accelerating economy ("max velocity" if you want to look at it like that) was in the beginning of June. All countries were reopening, vaccine hopes, JPow injecting confidence into the markets. Since then, SPY is stagnant, IWM/RUT, which is probably the most accurate reflection of the actual economy, has slightly gone down and people have bid up tech stocks in absolute panic mode.
Even JPow admitted it. The economic recovery has slowed down and if we look at economic data, the recovery has already stopped completely. The economy is rolling over as we can see in the continued high initial unemployment claims. Another fact to factor into the stock market.

TLDR and positions or ban?

TLDR: global economy bad and dollar shortage. economy not recovering, JPow back to doing QE Infinity. QE Infinity will cause the final squeeze in both the bond and stock market and will force the unwinding of the whole system.
Positions: idk. I'll throw in TLT 190c 12/18, SPY 220p 12/18, UUP 26c 12/18.That UUP call had 12.5k volume on Friday 7/31 btw.

Edit about positions and hedge funds

My current positions. You can laugh at my ZEN calls I completely failed with those.I personally will be entering one of the positions mentioned in the end - or similar ones. My personal opinion is that the SPY puts are the weakest try because you have to pay a lot of premium.
Also I forgot talking about why hedge funds are shorting the 30 year bond. Someone asked me in the comments and here's my reply:
"If you look at treasury yields and stock prices they're pretty much positively correlated. Yields go up, then stocks go up. Yields go down (like in March), then stocks go down.
What hedge funds are doing is extremely risky but then again, "hedge funds" is just a name and the hedgies are known for doing extremely risky stuff. They're shorting the 30 year bond because they needs 30y yields to go UP to validate their long positions in the equity market. 30y yields going up means that people are welcoming risk again, taking on debt, spending in the economy.
Milton Friedman labeled this the "interest rate fallacy". People usually think that low interest rates mean "easy money" but it's the opposite. Low interest rates mean that money is really tight and hard to get. Rising interest rates on the other hand signal an economic recovery, an increase in economic activity.
So hedge funds try to fight the Fed - the Fed is buying the 30 year bonds! - to try to validate their stock market positions. They also short VIX futures to do the same thing. Equity bulls don't want to see VIX higher than 15. They're also short the dollar because it would also validate their position: if the economic recovery happens and the global US dollar cycle gets restored then it will be easy to get dollars and the USD will continue to go down.
Then again, they're also fighting against the Fed in this situation because QE and the USD are correlated in my opinion.
Another Redditor told me that people who shorted Japanese government bonds completely blew up because the Japanese central bank bought the bonds and the "widow maker trade" was born:https://www.investopedia.com/terms/w/widow-maker.asp"

Edit #2

Since I've mentioned him a lot in the comments, I recommend you check out Steven van Metre's YouTube channel. Especially the bottom passages of my post are based on the knowledge I received from watching his videos. Even if didn't agree with him on the fundamental issues (there are some things like Gold which I view differently than him) I took it as an inspiration to dig deeper. I think he's a great person and even if you're bullish on stocks you can learn something from Steven!

submitted by 1terrortoast to wallstreetbets [link] [comments]

DDDD - Cycles and Human History

DDDD - Cycles and Human History
In this week's edition of DDDD (Data-Driven DD), now that my short term thesis of a 274-292 channel has now been invalidated because of some vaccine company fraudulently telling everyone they've cured COVID-19 to pump their stock before a secondary offering, I'll be digging deeper into my longer term thesis that I've been talked about for weeks now. I've previously wrote about this thesis from a perspective of economic history and the perspective of liquidity and finance. This time, lets look at it from a perspective of human and American history, and cycles that can be in them.
EDIT - This DD is meant to be read as a last part of a trilogy from these two previous posts with the actual data and quantitative content. Without that context, this post will basically seem like trying to use obscure theories to magically predict the future because of some prophecy. This is meant to be a theoretical / qualitative explanation of the of what was talked about in those previous posts, as well as connecting them to actions and thesises of well-known investors like Ray Dalio and Warren Buffett, who are saying very similar things. Don't bother reading this if you haven't read the first two parts of this trilogy.
Disclaimer - This is not financial advice, and a lot of the content below is my personal opinion. In fact, the numbers, facts, or explanations presented below could be wrong and be made up. Don't buy random options because some person on the internet says so; look at what happened to all the SPY 220p 4/17 bag holders. Do your own research and come to your own conclusions on what you should do with your own money, and how levered you want to be based on your personal risk tolerance.
History doesn’t repeat itself, but it often rhymes. This time, let’s take a broader look at cycles and patterns that often present itself throughout human history, and connect that to the economy and the stock market. Much of the content for this piece is taken from the Strauss–Howe generational theory, Ray Dalio’s thesis about our place in the long-term debt cycle, and Warren Buffet’s take on the same topic when he spent a few hours talking about it in the most recent Berkshire Hathaway annual shareholders meeting.
The Fourth Turning
The general idea of Strauss–Howe generational theory, or the “fourth turning” is that American history tends to repeat certain trends within every “saeculum”, or human lifespan - approximately 80 years. This is how long it typically takes for the certain historical events to start disappearing from human memory, allowing similar events to happen again. I’m not entirely sure why this theory focuses on American history specifically, and can be applied to human histories across civilizations, although until recently those cycles may not have been synchronized with each other. The theory states that history tend to occur in cycles of four “turnings”:
High - A “golden age” of a civilization. This is when there is strong unity within members of the society, with strong confidence in institutions like the government and big corporations, and weak individualism. As a collective mind, the civilization is able to work together to achieve big goals.
Awakening - People get tired of conformity, trust in institutions weaken, and there’s a strong desire for self awareness, spirituality, or authenticity. This is a time of experimentation, activism, and rebellion.
Unraveling - Confidence in institutions such as governments and large corporations are at its weakest, and individualism is at its strongest. Society fragments to polarizing groups, and public action by governments is barely able to achieve the smallest goals.
Crisis - This is when the fabric of society and existing institutions are destroyed in response to a perceived existential threat to the civilization itself. Economic distress is rampant as the economy sees defaulting sovereign debt, high unemployment, deflation or hyperinflation, or civil unrest. The crisis eventually becomes a unifying force for the previously fractured society, and the civilization comes together to solve the crisis. Civil authority and governments become trusted again, and self-sacrifices inspire people to work together as a society over self interest.
Let’s look at how this cycle played out over the past few centuries in the US.

1701-1723 High The establishment of the first British Empire. The thirteen British colonies in the Americas were all by now well established and beginning to prosper. The Glorious Revolution in Great Britain has just ended, and the result is the supremacy of the people, through Parliament, over the Crown, and a new set of rights that apply to all Englishmen.
1724-1741 Awakening The First Great Awakening, or the Evangelical Revival. People become much more devoted to their religion and a desire to convert others, including native Americans and slaves.
1742-1766 Unravelling Seven Years War (French and Indian War in the US). It was considered to be the world’s first major conflict, with initial rivalry between the European great powers spilling over to other continents. From an American perspective, this would seem as an unnecessary war caused by a rivalry between two powers far far away, causing unnecessary hardship to the settlers in America. After the war, Britain wanted to recoup some of their losses from all the money spent fighting in North America, and created new taxes, leading to the Boston Tea Party. As a result, Britain then imposed the “Intolerable Acts” to punish the colony of Massachusetts. Throughout this time, trust in the Crown within the colonies started to disappear.
1767-1791 Crisis The American Revolution - All trust and allegiance to the Crown is destroyed and replaced with new ideals.
1792-1821 High After Victory in the American Revolution, there’s a new sense of unity and pride in the newly founded nation. New institutions were created for the new country, and there was a sense of optimism, even during the War of 1812. The period after that war, and leading up to the 1824 election, was called the Era of Good Feelings, to reflect the sense of national unity and purpose within the US
1822-1842 Awakening The Second Great Awakening, similar to the first one.
1844-1860 Unraveling Sectionalism within the US - this period saw the rise in the North vs. South divide over slave states and non-slave states, and tensions revolving around it
1860-1865 Crisis American Civil War
1865-1886 High Gilded Age - Rapid economic growth in the United States through industrialization. Creation of new institutions in the form of industrial titans like Standard Oil.
1886-1908 Awakening The Third Great Awakening, similar to the first two. Also, the progressive era, which saw an activist movement to address some of problems that come with monopolies like Standard Oil, urbanization, and corruption.
1908-1929 Unravelling This period saw WWI, Prohibition, and the Roaring Twenties. During this time, there was an increasing social conflict between liberal urban and conservative rural areas, specifically about morals and what should and shouldn’t be legal (eg. Scopes trial), the rise of the KKK, and is a hallmark of consumerism, individualism, and greed.
1929-1946 Crisis The Great Depression and WWII. The New Deal destroyed many existing institutions, and replaced them with new ones. The aftermath of WWII created new global institutions, in the form of the UN, and started the American world order.
1946-1964 High The Golden Age of Capitalism / post-war economic boom
1964-1984 Awakening During this time, we saw two different types of awakening. The counterculture movement of the 1960s saw activism against the Vietnam war and the Civil Rights movement, as well as an increase in spirituality and self-awareness, which is typically associated with the youth during this period (i.e. “hippies”). During the same time, there was another religious revival - The Fourth Great Awakening.
1984-2008 Unravelling This period saw an increase of the polarization on cultural issues in America, specifically with abortion, gun control, drugs, and gay rights, between conservatives and liberals, starting with the election of Ronald Reagan. The polarization was also very heavily influenced by geography, with liberals tending to live on the coasts and big cities, and conservatives everywhere else. The polarization made it increasingly difficult for congress to enact any big changes.
2008 to somewhere between 2020 and 2030 Crisis This period started with the financial crisis, as well as the aftermath of 9/11 and the War on Terror. Add on the pandemic, and the fallout from it, and we’d likely see another mass destruction of old institutions and creation of new ones.
2020-2030 to 2040-2050 High ???
2040-2050 to 2070-2080 Awakening A Fifth Great Awakening?

The Changing Hands of World Powers
There’s also another interesting theory in the field of international relations that’s interesting and probably applicable here - the Long Cycle Theory. It basically states that international world orders and the title of the most powerful nation, is challenged every 70 to 100 years - the approximate maximum lifespan of an average human life, leading to some sort of global conflict and potentially a change in the world order as a result.
Cycles in World Leadership
The United States has survived as the World Leader for the 20th century from the threat of the Soviet Union challenging the world order. This time, it’s becoming increasingly clear that China has become a new challenger to the American world order.
Long Term Economic Cycles
Ray Dalio is famous for this being a central part of his economic thesis - about long term debt cycles, and the fact that we’re near the end of one. The summary of this idea is that the economy goes through short term and long term debt cycles. Short term debt cycles are the regular occurring business cycles you usually see once every decade, usually caused by overspending. The long term debt cycle, however, is when an entire economy becomes overleveraged, and it becomes harder and harder for a central bank to stimulate the economy. A hallmark of this happening is when interest rates hit near 0%, and they are forced to perform quantitative easing to stimulate the economy; the last time the economy’s seen anything similar to this was the Great Depression - this is called a liquidity trap. The period following this liquidity trap was an economic deleveraging, typically associated with civil unrest, revolutions, wars, and asset prices plummeting. The US economy has been seeing this since 2008 and has never been able to successfully fully deleverage the economy yet.
Another long term economic cycle theory that’s somewhat popular is the Kondratiev wave, although this field of economics is not generally accepted by most economists. The idea is that the economy goes through long-term economic cycles, lasting between 45 to 60 years, of periods of rapid economic and stock market growth fueled by technological innovations, followed by a period of stagnation.
Kondratiev Waves
Currently, we’re late in the wave created by the introduction of Information Technology, which started in the late 1970s. I’ve previously talked about this, but basically we’re near the end of this cycle as well.
So, it sounds like we’re near the end of many cycles; the generational cycle of the Strauss–Howe generational theory, the long term debt cycle, the Kondratiev Wave cycle, and possibly the beginning of the end of the Long Cycle in international relations as China begins to contend with the United States for global influence. In all of these cycles, the conclusion is clear - chaos, economic hardship, geopolitical tensions and crises. Let’s take a closer look at the stock market last time all of these cycles ended - the 1930s.
Retail Investors in the 1920s
There’s not that much solid quantitative data about retail investors and their impact on the stock market; only qualitative and anecdotal data. However, one thing is clear - retail investors pumped the market in 1929 beyond what fundamentals warranted, despite evidence of a weakening economy due to stagnating consumer spending and distress by farmers due to overproduction of wheat, and soon, the Dust Bowl. Why were they pumping stocks so much? Because they falsely believed that stocks only go up. I’ll put some excerpts from this Forbes and this Investopedia article I found talking about this to better illustrate the extent and nature of this pump.
Still there was one big anomaly in the decade preceding, the 1920s, and it remains instructive today. The American people bought stocks in unprecedented fashion. Stocks on the installment plan, stocks via investment clubs, stocks bought with capital rather than income, stocks on margin. It was a big new fad. Nothing like the participation in the market that the nation experienced in the 1920s can be found in previous eras of history.
The permanent denuding of the dollar, the reality of which first became clear in the 1920s, forced savers to find some instrument that would pay them back in the old way, in money that held its value. The choice was made to capture, via stocks, the forthcoming profits of businesses. Here would be money commensurate to what was needed to buy things in the future.
Until the peak in 1929, stock prices went up by nearly 10 times. In the 1920s, investing in the stock market became somewhat of a national pastime for those who could afford it and even those who could not—the latter borrowed from stockbrokers to finance their investments.
People were not buying stocks on fundamentals; they were buying in anticipation of rising share prices. Rising share prices simply brought more people into the markets, convinced that it was easy money. In mid-1929, the economy stumbled due to excess production in many industries, creating an oversupply. Essentially, companies were able to acquire money cheaply due to high share prices and invest in their own production with the requisite optimism.
This all sounds pretty familiar to what's going on in the stock market today; as I previously mentioned, retail investors are pouring money in at unprecedented levels. Why is this happening now, about 90 years since the last time every retail investor started pouring money in? It's the same as the reasoning behind most of the other cycles I've mentioned above - the vast majority of people who previously experienced this and would have been alive to remember the 1920s have passed away by now. With an absence of people alive to have this mistake in living memory, humanity is bound to repeat the same mistakes, ignoring the warnings from our ancestors who are no longer with us, and repeat the cycle.
There's one pair of billionaires who are old enough to remember the aftermath of the the stock market pump that led towards the 1929 crash - Warren Buffett and Charlie Munger. Warren would have been born right after the crash and Charlie would have been 5. Both of them entered the finance industry while the stock market was still recovering from it, and still below the 1929 highs. For anyone who watched him talk at the annual shareholder meeting, he spent a few hours talking about a similar story - one of the highs and lows of American history, with a bullish perspective. He wouldn't have spent hours talking about the 1929 crash and the fact that it took multiple decades to recover if this wasn't relevant. This is supported by the fact that he bought virtually nothing since the crash, and has been gradually selling a large portion of this publicly traded equities - first his airlines and now banks. Although he believes that we'll eventually recover (i.e. "Never bet against American", in the long run), it's clear from his actions that he sees parallels of this from the stock market he grew up in the shadow of in his childhood and doesn't want to bet for America in the short term.
EDIT - Someone pointed out this article by Ray Dalio: https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/big-cycles-over-last-500-years-ray-dalio/ which basically talks about something very similar. I actually didn't even know about the existence of this article and actually wrote this before this got published, but looks like we both came to the same conclusion, and this is a shorter version of Ray Dalio's article. Recommend everyone check this out if they want a more in-depth version of this DD with more data and this this post as a tldr of it.
Weekly SPY Watch Updates
This section has absolutely nothing to do with anything I talked about above, but people apparently care about trades I'm making and what my magic markers say will happen in the stock market this week, so I'll have this section of this post dedicated to that and my updates.
I've since sold, with the exception of some VIX calls, all my short positions on SPY, and currently doing some individual plays - currently holding GSX puts and short (sold) HTZ calls, among some other smaller plays. With respect to SPY, it looks like we'll be in a new channel - this time 293-300; not sure how long we'll be staying in this channel for, but I'll be playing it by either selling short-dated iron condors or buying calls / puts when it reaches one end of the channel. While magic markers are telling me we're going to be bullish medium term, and go through 300 to new ATHs, meaning I should buy calls, I don't want to go against my own fundamentals in principle by the fact that the stock market is clearly already overvalued.
5/25 3PM - /ES at 299, might open near the top of the channel. Will need to see how we open to decide if I'm going to enter a position on SPY again.
5/25 10PM - Looks we're going to be trading on the upper half the of channel on Tuesday, with a trading range of 300-297. Might look to pick up some short-dated puts to play the channel if technicals look right on open.
5/26 Noon - Got a small amount of 5/29 ATM puts to play the channel. We opened right above the 200MA so I'm relying on this being a fake out, and not very confident about this specific play.
5/26 3:50PM - Looks like 300-302 range is acting like a resistance, heading back down in the 293-300 channel. Bearish intraday (5M, 15M) MACD => EOD dump and open lower in the channel tomorrow. Looking closely at what's going on with China.
- Wednesday (tomorrow): House votes on sanctions related to Chinese concentration camps of Uyghurs
- Thursday: China votes, and very likely passes, amendment to Basic Law in HK for "national security"
- End of Week: Trump promised that he will have a policy response, likely sanctions, for the change in HK's basic law, in addition to possibly revoking HK's special status
5/27 Market Open - Opened at the top of the resistance again, but quickly reversing. Might play out similar to yesterday
5/27 11AM - Going to wait till SPY hits 297 again and then roll my 5/29 puts I got yesterday to continue playing the channel down to 293
5/27 3:50PM - Turns out it was a EOD pump instead of dump. Oversold on 5M and 15M, so probably need to consolidate again tomorrow with a trading range of 297-302 again. Not so sure about this one because there's a solid chance this just breaks through that resistance and goes towards new ATHs. Entered into more 5/29 puts and going to hold overnight, sell if we still have positive momentum going in to open tomorrow. If we don't break 300 again tomorrow, I'm going to assume we're going to new ATHs and buy some IWM calls, hedged with QQQ puts.
5/27 6:30PM - My plan for tomorrow - see if we're actually in a 293-302 channel. There's going to be alot of uncertainty coming from China this week. If we're still above 302 by 10AM I'll probably transition towards bull positions. Most tech / strong companies are priced near their ATHs, and all the momentum coming into SPY is now coming from all the stocks that were really hit the past few months. Looking at CCL, JPM, and BA, all of whom are going towards a 1W MACD crossover
5/27 11PM - Still above this channel. Again, if we open above 302 and don't quickly reverse then clearly 300 wasn't that much of a resistance and we're headed to ATHs - next stop is 313, followed by 340. To my bears out there - the 1W MACD has already crossed over, meaning we're not going to see a rug pull any time soon, with the exception of some dramatic event happening in China. I'm not taking any medium-term bearish positions and currently just trying to play this channel, although the bullish momentum is stronger than I expected and not consolidating that much on 300 (yet). Watch out for August - that's when most medical experts agree a second lockdown is going to become evident and this bubble will pop; I still stand by my long term thesis. However, in the short term, don't trade against the trend and profit off the bubble.
5/28 9:40AM - I was wrong again. Going to sell those puts when SPY hits 302 at a small loss. We're headed to ATH
5/28 11:40AM - Overbought on 15M and 1H RSI, should see more consolidation today, and hopefully hit my 302 target to sell later today.
5/28 1PM - Stopped out of my small SPY puts, rolled that out into bullish positions on JPM, BA, and CCL. Will probably be doing SPY plays for a while, since all the technicals are pointing to a bullish rally, but only way for that to continue is for beaten down stocks like the ones mentioned, and found in IWM, to skyrocket the next few weeks. Also probably going to stop updating this thread as much.
5/28 5PM - 1H MACD is about to cross, and SPY got near 302 today, We've clearly broken the previous resistance area of 300-302, alot earlier than I was expecting; today was just a day for consolidation because RSI was overbought, now it has room to grow. MACD also acts as a resistance and typically will bounce back instead of cross if there's still bullish sentiment. I believe this is the case now, and we will also see SPY bounce up from the previous 300-302 region of resistance with it becoming support; the next level of resistance will be 313 on SPY, which is where we'll be headed soon. Haven't been holding any medium-term short positions, and am currently net long on financials and transports, which will very likely rally disproportionally if SPY continues to go up. Very well aware that this is a bubble, but I called the top wrong and trading against the trend will just lose you money.
5/28 7PM - Tomorrow will be an interesting day, Trump announced a news conference, with an unspecified time, where he will talk about actions he will do to China, potentially sanctions. There was a very small dip in the market on this news but nothing much else has happened yet. Depending on what the actions are, could be a red day tomorrow and break 302. I'll play this out intraday if we don't open low tomorrow
5/29 11AM - SPY is re-testing the 300-302 area, this time as support. Everything really depends on whatever Trump announces today regarding retaliation about China. Hard to say what can happen. If it's something extreme, like sanctions or tariffs, this could lead to another crash. Anything else would mean this SPY immediately bounces back from this support area.
5/29 1PM - Trump conference scheduled at 2PM. Will watch stock market reaction and trade with sentiment from it. If retaliation is bad enough to drop below 300, could be the rug pull all the bears have been waiting for.
5/29 2PM - Picked up some 302-300 debit spreads coming into the news conference, planning on holding this for an hour and selling by EOD
5/29 3PM - Sold puts during the speech and flipped to 304-310 calls. Looks like this wasn't enough to break through support. Going to hold these overnight, momentum looks to be turning bullish now that there's no longer any uncertainty about China, and actions are unlikely to provoke a Chinese retaliation.
5/29 4PM - Sold my short-dated calls. Coming into the weekend, it looks like next week will continue to be bullish, with 1D MACD convergence continuing, as well as the lack of any resistance until 313.
Week of Jun 1 - Jun 5 - Looking at SPY hitting 213 by end of week
submitted by ASoftEngStudent to wallstreetbets [link] [comments]

Anti bioterror play for huge long term gains

Thesis: SIGA Technologies, an anti-bioterror pharmaceutical company, will double their stock price in a year and triple or quadruple it in two years. They are in an incredibly strong financial position: zero debt, future US government purchases that may be greater than their market cap, and low expenses for operations and forward research. They also have amazing future growth prospects as foreign governments will buy their meds to prepare for future pandemics. Their drugs treat smallpox which is both more contagious and deadly (IFR ~30%!) than the Wuhan plague.
Do you think absolutely no political or military leader will learn their lesson about pandemic preparedness? Do you think business leaders are going to put the pressure down since the cost of unpreparedness is orders of magnitude greater than preparedness? That’s what this play is all about.
The play: Buy $SIGA stocks and hold for 2 years.

Quick facts

Market cap: $560 million
Style: Value, when compared to other biotechs
Products: Their primary product is an FDA approved oral antiviral (TPOXX) that treats all orthopox viruses (e.g. the dreaded smallpox). They are currently developing additional products for IV and pediatric treatment, another small molecule drug for treating orthopox viruses, and are developing therapeutics that use orthopox viruses for delivery of anticancer antigens.
How SIGA makes money: 1) US government contracts to supply the Strategic National Stockpile, 2) US government contracts for research, 3) sales to foreign governments and potentially private parties. Note that their business doesn't care about prevailing market conditions and all of these are multi-year contracts.
Debt: $0. They paid off an $86 MM loan in March.
Cash holdings: $77.4 MM
Total assets: $118.6 MM
Net cash flow 2019: -$18.2 MM, as discussed below, 2019 was a transition year between govt contracts hence the low income. They made $400MM from closing contracts in 2018.
Net cash flow 2020, my estimate: +$53 MM, see cash flow section below for how I got this figure

How this play can win

- The US govt through BARDA accelerates their purchasing of TPOXX to be and look more prepared for future pandemics.
- Foreign governments purchase TPOXX for their own pandemic preparedness. Canada announced an intent to purchase in December. Others are likely to follow. IMO, the stock will hit $10 when 3 additional countries announce purchasing and $20 when they have a network of 10 purchasing countries plus additional research. The US gets a discount on TPOXX because they funded the initial research, others will likely pay three times as much per dose.
- The US govt offers much more research funding to SIGA to design antivirals for other possible pandemic viruses. 10 years ago they had a small BARDA contract to look into antivirals for Lassa fever, a nasty rat flu boogaloo. They might renew or add to this type of research.
- TPOXX gets additional approvals for IV use and prophylactic use (i.e. give to people in contact with infected, first responders or first city) and US buys more. They recently received a new $23 MM contract for developing this use.
- A larger pharmaceutical company announces that they will purchase SIGA for $10-$15 share in a year. SIGA already has connections with Pfizer.
- Large amounts of additional income help them pump with stock buybacks or fat dividends. I am totally convinced they are going to buyback or spit dividends in a year from now.

Risks

- Foreign governments don’t purchase TPOXX or don’t approve its safety/efficacy and rely on the vaccine for smallpox (but 1 in 5 people can’t take the vax and lots of deaths in first wave without TPOXX).
- US govt does not add to stockpile, only keeps refreshing expired TPOXX.
- US govt does not invest in additional pandemic preparedness research/invests only in competitors.
- TPOXX may later be discovered to have a severe side-effect. (Oral formula is already FDA approved though).
- There’s more risks listed in their 10-K, but I do not think they are significant enough to list here.

Resources for your own DD

Do your own research. Always.
Latest 10-K: https://investor.siga.com/node/13196/html
Latest 10-Q: https://investor.siga.com/node/13251/html
2020 Q1 earnings call: https://www DOT fool DOT com/earnings/call-transcripts/2020/05/07/siga-technologies-inc-siga-q1-2020-earnings-call-t.aspx
2019 Q4 earnings call: https://www DOT seeking NO SPACE alpha DOT com/article/4330138-siga-technologies-inc-siga-ceo-phil-gomez-on-q4-2019-results-earnings-call-transcript
Reddit doesn't like the above websites. Sorry for the garbled links
Press releases: https://investor.siga.com/press-releases
Smallpox wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Smallpox

Detailed DD

I’m going to start off this section by answering the arguments you’ve already thought of.
Who gives a shit about some old timey disease?
The world militaries. Smallpox is a nasty disease. It's basic reproduction number, R0, is between 3-6, like the Wuhan coronavirus. It similarly has a 7-14 day lag time before symptoms show, although it is not known to be infectious for the first several days.
Smallpox is also exceptionally deadly, ranging from 15-30% fatality rate depending upon the strain and in children and the elderly can reach a 75% mortality rate. Survivors are usually permanently scarred and may have life-long complications from the disease. A smallpox epidemic would actually make corona look like "just the flu."
Infection around day 20 mark. Bangladesh, 1973.
Bioterrorism or biowarfare with smallpox is a massive threat to the military and people and an obvious first choice of weapon for a bioterrorist. Careful governments will plan for it.
Isn't smallpox eradicated?
Yes. But. 1) There are still many samples across the world in government labs across the world. 2) The genome exists on computers in said labs. 3) Many other orthopox viruses exist such as cowpox and monkeypox. Monkeypox in particular has had more cases in subsaharan Africa in the last few years. There have even been small outbreaks in the US, UK, and Singapore within the last 20 years.
What about vaccines?
  1. Maybe you recall that in the 1790’s Edward Jenner discovered the first vaccine by giving people the milder cowpox to prevent smallpox. The state of the smallpox vaccine has not evolved significantly since then. The modern vaccine uses a two-prong poker to deliver a live smallpox virus that has been engineered to be very weak. However, it is still a real virus that can causes symptoms or spread the disease to others. One in five Americans have underlying conditions that prevent them from receiving this vaccine due to the symptoms it causes.
  2. What do you do when smallpox starts spreading rapidly? You need to be able to treat the potentially 100s of thousands of people who will be infected before the immunization takes effect. The US is well-prepared with the vaccine having 300 million doses, nearly enough for every American. But you need a treatment as part of the defense strategy.
  3. TPOXX is in the process of being approved as a prophylactic. I.e. if smallpox were to spread then people could be given both the vaccine and TPOXX at the same time to make sure they don’t get sick if they were exposed prior to vaccination. Prophylactic treatment could be extremely important to first-responders, military, and people in the most badly affected zones.

Fundamentals

I am no expert in reading 10-K filings, but SIGA's 10-K is not too complicated. I encourage you to do your own DD before making this play and if you've never read a 10-K filing before this is a great one to cut your teeth on. SIGA only has one key product line and their debt is uncomplicated (nonexistent); the only tricky parts is following the government money.

Balance sheet from most recent 10-Q
Balance sheet
So the things to look at here are:
  1. SIGA has plenty of cash. Enough for two years operating expenses without any sort of austerity. Even if the economic downturn affected their business model, they would weather it easily.
  2. They have $16 MM in inventory. That’s mostly TPOXX they’ve already manufactured. This is great because it means they will have low costs for meeting the current BARDA contract supply request for this year and that if they get more orders they can dedicate their supply chain to filling them.
  3. No debt. There’s no risk of them going tits up soon. Unlike your other favorite plays against highly-leveraged trash companies (looking at you Zillow), SIGA can ride out a credit crunch with ease.
  4. Stockholders’ equity aka book value. At a price to book of 5:1 this is a cheap biotech company, one of the reasons I see them as a value buy. Also of note, their property includes patents on TPOXX in virtually every country.

Cash flow
In 2019, SIGA took a $7 million loss while in 2018 they punched a $422 million gain. How did that happen? Their entire business runs on multi-year govt contracts. 2018 saw an older BARDA contract end with the orders completely filled to stuff the strategic stockpile. 2019 was a transition year.They have a new contract with BARDA to replenish expiring TPOXX and research then purchase new formulations for IV and pediatric use. So, looking at their 201910-K their earnings look abysmal, but their forward looking earnings are much better given their recent news releases.
Let’s look more at that contract since it is a principal revenue source. SIGA’s most recent 19C contract gives BARDA (Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority) the ability to purchase up to $602.5MM worth of product. The base contract guarantees $51.7 MM and BARDA announced the exercise of an additional $127.1 MM in purchasing for the next year as of a few weeks ago. Due to drug expiration and future preparedness, my opinion is that BARDA will exercise all of the purchasing options over the next 10 years.
Here’s my 2020 cash flow estimate, I am inexperienced at this sort of analysis. Pro 10-K readers, please give me some criticism.
-$24 MM from expenses for sales, admin, research, services ,patents. Average of last 2 years -10% because research activity is shut down
-$7 MM from additional costs of terminating loan. 10-Q
+$2 MM from part 1 of Canadian order. Press release
+$75 MM from three quarters of $101 MM exercise of BARDA contract. Estimated because they will supply TPOXX the next three quarters of 2020 and Q1 2021, press release
-$3 MM additional costs to fulfill orders. Estimate from BARDA contract’s allocation for supply costs
+$10 MM from contracts for research. Estimate by Q1 research revenue x 4
? a new $23 MM research contract with the department of defense was announced in June, unclear when they will receive the money at this time
$0 from stock buybacks and dividends, they have never had a dividend, but did do $800k in buybacks last year. They might have paid down their debt to put them in a position to do a lot more buybacks, so this is subject to change.
Total: +$53 MM
I expect the next few years to be cash flow positive now that they are out of the development phase and into the deployment phase. As they get additional international buyers they will also need to service their expiring stockpiles. This puts them at a forward price to earnings estimate of 10:1, still a value play in the current environment.
The high future cash flow is why I expect them to start pumping dividends or buybacks in a year. Since their research activities are primarily supported by the US government, they won't have other useful activities for the cash other than to return it to shareholders. Also, the guys who founded SIGA in the 90's probably want to retire on a fat dividend pretty soon. Dividends and buybacks are a big factor in how many analysts calculate stock prices so either development will push the share price up a lot.

International Sales
This is where SIGA make us gigatendies. The US sales are the bread and butter that will keep them afloat for years to come. International sales are where they grow. Their contracts with the US government let them sell TPOXX at about $350 per course because they funded the initial research, whereas Canada is paying about $950 per course giving SIGA a massive estimated 95% margin.
Let's see who might be interested in buying TPOXX as the China flu crisis unwinds: we've got most of western Europe/NATO--UK, France,Italy, Austria, Sweden, Switzerland, Germany, Spain; Pacific countries wary of being in the China sphere--Taiwan, South Korea, Japan, Singapore, Australia,Malaysia, Vietnam, Indonesia; and wealthy Middle Eastern countries that need to hedge against instability--Israel, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, UAE, Qatar; a smattering of other countries getting wise to viral threats--Russia, India,Brazil, South Africa, Mexico. That's a lot of potential buyers and it will only take a few for SIGA's price to shoot up. Also note that SIGA does not market internationally themselves, they are partnered with Meridian, a Pfizer subsidiary, for international sales.
SIGA also has an excellent moat internationally. They have patents for TPOXX and its analogs almost everywhere but China. Of course, there are still risks associated with international expansion, but the upside potential is yuuge. Let's hear it from the horse's mouth and see what SIGA had to say on their 2019 Q4 conference call:
Now let's discuss the international markets. The pursuit of international sales for oral TPOXX is a key focus for us at SIGA. Our partnership with Meridian Medical Technologies that we announced last June has been excellent. However as I've said many times the sales cycle is long for international government procurement of these types of products and each country has its own set of internal dynamics. ... I have been asked why we do not provide a country-by-country update on sales progress. We do not comment on specific progress with countries for two main reasons. First, we respect the confidentiality of our customers who would not want their deliberations to become public. And second, we would not want to signal to competitors which countries may be undergoing an expansion in their spending for biodefense. With that context in mind, we are pleased to share a progress report regarding the Canadian military, who announced in December and intend to issue contracts to support a Health Canada, regulatory filing and thep urchase of up to 15,825 courses of oral TPOXX for the Canadian military. A procurement order of this size would represent about 25%of the active military forces in Canada. Although this is a relatively modest number of courses it is precedent for military preparedness by a U.S. NATO ally.
What can we gather from that? They've got multiple sales in the works, but are keeping mum about it. Also, that it takes time to cut through government tape and announce these sales. Here's the single largest risk for this play: that it takes too long for international contracts to be announced. For this reason, I recommend buying stocks and not calls. The near term future is too unpredictable.

Research Activities
SIGA's main drug, oral TPOXX, is already completely FDA approved as safe in humans and effective in animals. A quirk of their niche is that since smallpox is eradicated, they can't ethically test the drug for effectiveness in humans. This helps their bottom line because they basically get to skip some of the trials of a typical drug development cycle.
SIGA's most important upcoming products are TPOXX for IV, liquid pediatric, and prophylactic use. Due to the current pandemic, all human trials are postponed, but the barriers for these trials are quite low. They only need to demonstrate human safety for the alternate ROA drugs. For prophylactic TPOXX, SIGA needs to demonstrate that TPOXX does not interfere with immunity acquisition from the smallpox vaccine. That way a potentially exposed person can both be treated and vaccinated at the same time. If they fail to meet these research goals, then I doubt the BARDA contract will be exercised for full value. Because of the delay in these results due to corona, I doubt that they threaten the trade that I'm proposing.
Orthopox viruses to deliver cancer therapeutics and older Lassa fever antivirals. I honestly don't know enough about their activities in these areas to make a comment. I think they are irrelevant to the base play, but could provide some surprise upside if there was a development.

Insider trading
The execs did more selling than buying last year which is perhaps bearish, but their most recent move was to buy a lot of stock in December after announcing the Canada deal. They sold stock at ~$5.80 in early 2019. Now, they're holding even though it is past $6. I think the COVID pandemic has massively increased SIGA’s value and their key people are holding at a price where they previously sold knowing that a lot more cash is coming in. I think there's also some possibility of acquisition at higher share price, being debt free makes them attractive to a buyer--just pick up all the shares, no liabilities to clean up.

Positions
I have 5% of my IRA in SIGA and a couple of long dated $10 calls (volume is shit FYI) in my funny money account.
Thank you for reading my novel.
Disclaimer: Just because I can write two coherent paragraphs on a play does not mean I know what I'm doing. Do your own due diligence.
submitted by hdigga to pennystocks [link] [comments]

This rally is a mirage, we are only in the beginning stages of this recession

TL;DR at the bottom
Hi guys, with the market rallying 20% from its "bottom", many people are expressing the sentiment that we should buy back into the market again because the "fed" or the "government" won't allow stocks to crash.
We will for sure see unprecedented actions taken by the fed and the government because they have both the motive and the political capital to enact such policies. However, I think this is a misguided reason to believe the market is currently making its "real" rally.
I am not not a permabear nor am I a permabull. I just try to objectively analyze the facts, apply a healthy dose of margin of safety, and then see if my conclusions are actionable.
For example, I posted my thesis on why we will enter a serious global economic downturn on Feb 9th 10 days before it happened. At the time we were at the height of the biggest bull market in our history, and I had gotten a lot of attacks on my thesis leading up to me consolidating my thoughts:
https://www.reddit.com/China_Flu/comments/f1fm6y/the_world_economy_will_enter_a_serious_downturn/
I continued adding more thoughts on things like the potential efficacy of Chloroquine 2 weeks before Trump announced it in a press conference and the media picked up on it, the potential collapse of American oil producers before the price war happened, casinos going under, helicopter money, bailouts, etc all before they were announced or the markets priced them in here:
https://www.reddit.com/China_Flu/comments/fede69/continued_thoughts_on_the_global_economic_impact/
And finally I talked about an upcoming inflection point coincidentally moments before Trump first announced Chloroquine/Hydroxychloroquine and 2 trading days before the "bottom" of the market:
https://www.reddit.com/stocks/comments/fleh7e/incoming_inflection_point_for_general_market/
So I'm perfectly happy to make bearish calls or bullish calls, they are dependent variables of independent and unbiased analysis. I hope I made a reasonable case for why I am not personally biased (although, for the sake of humanity, I do wish for progress and prosperity of course).
I think the market rally is largely a mirage, and we are not getting correct pricings. The rally is probably driven by two main sources:
So the capital displacement is relatively simple: If you're seeking shelter in "risk free" investments that has some yields, you're now competing with a buyer (federal reserve) that prints hundreds of billions up to whatever it wants. They're literally squeezing out capital from the finite treasuries.
If you want riskier high quality corporate bonds, the fed will be there.
If you want even equities, you're going to face competition for them in the future. At least that's what former chairwoman Jenet Yellen recently said about the possibility of expanding their powers to buy equities.
So money is getting squeezed into a smaller and smaller relative portion of the financial markets, and the artificial demand is driving yields down and prices up. I could write a whole thread about this, but let's stick with the explanation of price movement.
The second main reason for the recent rally is from institutional investors who are incorrectly modeling earnings/yield of equities. So the logic here is: trillions are injected into the economy (fiscal injections), those trillions will become earnings for companies at some multiplier of the original stimulus over x amount of time, and if we add this number to the unstimulated estimated earnings, we can model future earnings.
My issue with this model, is on two main assumptions:
The first assumption is the length of disruption caused by the threat of this virus.
This virus is not going to stop its serious disruption of behavior from economic actors. Especially not in a country like the US where the majority of people have a massive financial disincentive to seek out healthcare. Here's my logic:
For months I've been praising the governments and response of South Korea, Singapore, and Taiwan. With Taiwan being the absolute best at handling the virus. However, I have also been using them as my leading indicators for how the virus will progress and affect economic actors. What I have seen developing lately is not good.
Singapore is now calling for a shutdown, after they initially did a herculean job of containing their outbreak. I had hoped that they would develop procedures (that we can copy) needed to run an open economy while the threat of the virus looms in the background. But that is not what has happened. Instead, we are seeing growing numbers of new clusters forming, and quickly getting out of control. They are tightening and shutting down their economy rather than opening up more. This is our leading indicator. A government far more responsible and effective than us is resorting to shutting down.
Taiwan is faring better, but only because of their prohibitive ban on almost all foreign travelers (this is obviously devastating to their tourism sector and broader economy). Their economy and society remains open, with many if not most people having hardly any interruptions to their lives (aside from mask wearing). They are one of only 3 countries where all children are still going to school. However, even their economy is faltering as they try to balance the prohibitive actions needed to contain the virus and the economic need to keep things open. They are proposing an unprecedented stimulus/rescue package to bolster their economy. And I think it's a safe assumption that if they ever do open up to foreign travelers again, especially with covid19 having proliferated as it already has, then they will have to deal with massive outbreak clusters all over their island.
South Korea, which has probably the relatable and relevant model for us to copy, has recently extended its social distance campaign. South Korea is a far larger nation than Singapore or Taiwan. They have a climate similar to Seattle/New York. They had a major outbreak in Deagu but didn't shut their country down. They never even banned Chinese travelers, yes, they had Chinese tourists in their country while the outbreak was happening. They were among the first to widely use Hydroxychloroquine/chloroquine as a treatment for Covid19. They had among the lowest fatality rates. They contained their outbreak without shutting the whole country down.
Even South Korea can't truly return to normal and open their economy up.
So why, in our incredible American exceptionalism hubris, and far less competent leaders, do we believe we're going to come anywhere close to normalcy in the near future?
Let's look at the next assumption, that fiscal stimulus would end up as earnings for companies. There's no doubt some will end up as earnings, but only a small fraction of what is being modeled by those on Wall Street.
The average American don't even have $1000 in emergency funds, do we expect them to return to their normal consumption habits when they risk having hospital bills multiples of $1000 just from walking past the wrong person? Do you think Americans, as much as they love to spend, aren't going to put some of that stimulus check in their emergency funds rather than contribute it to the earning of some companies? Sure, there will be some "forced" spending of the money (food and necessities), but if anyone is modeling the multiplier effect from previous data, then they really don't appreciate how different this virus makes things. Even in the GFC, laid off people didn't really worry about the heightened threat of being hospitalized.
Finally, some investors believe the Fed and the government literally will do anything to keep the numbers up. If this is true, you should be buying silver (or gold), not stocks.
Monetary actions can be reversed relatively easily. They are far more dynamic tools. Fiscal actions are not. You put money in the hands of spenders, that money is gonna circulate. And you really don't have an easy way of reversing that. If we think the government is going to keep handing out stimulus checks, grants to businesses, and other fiscal stimulus, then the inflation predicted from the GFC will come true for this crisis.
The fall out of inflation will be difficult to truly understand. But I do think inflation will be disruptive enough to the economy that inflation hedge assets will outperform other assets at least in the short term. For example, if inflation goes to 5%, who's going to lend to companies for less than inflation? With costlier debt, equity yield goes down, and again, what investor wants yields less than inflation? Inflation is going to cause all kinds of disruptions. I think the disruptions will come down to less liquidity (credit will vanish with uncertain inflation) and higher economic friction (less efficiency).
So if the response to why the market has to go up is continuous fiscal (and some monetary) actions to prop up spending and earnings, then the question is how will fiscal actions be reversed? How do we get that money out after things go back to "normal"?
I think if we see equities rise from here, it'll be reflective of inflation rather than inflation-adjusted earnings. Silver would be the play here.
I have a lot more thoughts on this, especially on the time it takes to turn the gears of the financial system and why the inertia is moving us deeper into global recession, not out of it, but I'm running out of time and must end here.
TL;DR this is a fake rally, and if anyone really expects prices to continue rallying, buy silver instead
submitted by Starcraftduder to StockMarket [link] [comments]

Don't blindly follow a narrative, its bad for you and its bad for crypto in general

I mostly lurk around here but I see a pattern repeating over and over again here and in multiple communities so I have to post. I'm just posting this here because I appreciate the fact that this sub is a place of free speech and maybe something productive can come out from this post, while bitcoin is just fucking censorship, memes and moon/lambo posts. If you don't agree, write in the comments why, instead of downvoting. You don't have to upvote either, but when you downvote you are killing the opportunity to have discussion. If you downvote or comment that I'm wrong without providing any counterpoints you are no better than the BTC maxis you despise.
In various communities I see a narrative being used to bring people in and making them follow something without thinking for themselves. In crypto I see this mostly in BTC vs BCH tribalistic arguments:
- BTC community: "Everything that is not BTC is shitcoin." or more recently as stated by adam on twitter, "Everything that is not BTC is a ponzi scheme, even ETH.", "what is ETH supply?", and even that they are doing this for "altruistic" reasons, to "protect" the newcomers. Very convenient for them that they are protecting the newcomers by having them buy their bags
- BCH community: "BTC maxis are dumb", "just increase block size and you will have truly p2p electronic cash", "It is just that simple, there are no trade offs", "if you don't agree with me you are a BTC maxi", "BCH is satoshi's vision for p2p electronic cash"
It is not exclusive to crypto but also politics, and you see this over and over again on twitter and on reddit.
My point is, that narratives are created so people don't have to think, they just choose a narrative that is easy to follow and makes sense for them, and stick with it. And people keep repeating these narratives to bring other people in, maybe by ignorance, because they truly believe it without questioning, or maybe by self interest, because they want to shill you their bags.
Because this is BCH community, and because bitcoin is censored, so I can't post there about the problems in the BTC narrative (some of which are IMO correctly identified by BCH community), I will stick with the narrative I see in the BCH community.
The culprit of this post was firstly this post by user u/scotty321 "The BTC Paradox: “A 1 MB blocksize enables poor people to run their own node!” “Okay, then what?” “Poor people won’t be able to use the network!”". You will see many posts of this kind being made by u/Egon_1 also. Then you have also this comment in that thread by u/fuck_____________1 saying that people that want to run their own nodes are retarded and that there is no reason to want to do that. "Just trust block explorer websites". And the post and comment were highly upvoted. Really? You really think that there is no problem in having just a few nodes on the network? And that the only thing that secures the network are miners?
As stated by user u/co1nsurf3r in that thread:
While I don't think that everybody needs to run a node, a full node does publish blocks it considers valid to other nodes. This does not amount to much if you only consider a single node in the network, but many "honest" full nodes in the network will reduce the probability of a valid block being withheld from the network by a collusion of "hostile" node operators.
But surely this will not get attention here, and will be downvoted by those people that promote the narrative that there is no trade off in increasing the blocksize and the people that don't see it are retarded or are btc maxis.
The only narrative I stick to and have been for many years now is that cryptocurrency takes power from the government and gives power to the individual, so you are not restricted to your economy as you can participate in the global economy. There is also the narrative of banking the bankless, which I hope will come true, but it is not a use case we are seeing right now.
Some people would argue that removing power from gov's is a bad thing, but you can't deny the fact that gov's can't control crypto (at least we would want them not to).
But, if you really want the individuals to remain in control of their money and transact with anyone in the world, the network needs to be very resistant to any kind of attacks. How can you have p2p electronic cash if your network just has a handful couple of nodes and the chinese gov can locate them and just block communication to them? I'm not saying that this is BCH case, I'm just refuting the fact that there is no value in running your own node. If you are relying on block explorers, the gov can just block the communication to the block explorer websites. Then what? Who will you trust to get chain information? The nodes needs to be decentralized so if you take one node down, many more can appear so it is hard to censor and you don't have few points of failure.
Right now BTC is focusing on that use case of being difficult to censor. But with that comes the problem that is very expensive to transact on the network, which breaks the purpose of anyone being able to participate. Obviously I do think that is also a major problem, and lightning network is awful right now and probably still years away of being usable, if it ever will. The best solution is up for debate, but thinking that you just have to increase the blocksize and there is no trade off is just naive or misleading. BCH is doing a good thing in trying to come with a solution that is inclusive and promotes cheap and fast transactions, but also don't forget centralization is a major concern and nothing to just shrug off.
Saying that "a 1 MB blocksize enables poor people to run their own" and that because of that "Poor people won’t be able to use the network" is a misrepresentation designed to promote a narrative. Because 1MB is not to allow "poor" people to run their node, it is to facilitate as many people to run a node to promote decentralization and avoid censorship.
Also an elephant in the room that you will not see being discussed in either BTC or BCH communities is that mining pools are heavily centralized. And I'm not talking about miners being mostly in china, but also that big pools control a lot of hashing power both in BTC and BCH, and that is terrible for the purpose of crypto.
Other projects are trying to solve that. Will they be successful? I don't know, I hope so, because I don't buy into any narrative. There are many challenges and I want to see crypto succeed as a whole. As always guys, DYOR and always question if you are not blindly following a narrative. I'm sure I will be called BTC maxi but maybe some people will find value in this. Don't trust guys that are always posting silly "gocha's" against the other "tribe".
EDIT: User u/ShadowOfHarbringer has pointed me to some threads that this has been discussed in the past and I will just put my take on them here for visibility, as I will be using this thread as a reference in future discussions I engage:
When there was only 2 nodes in the network, adding a third node increased redundancy and resiliency of the network as a whole in a significant way. When there is thousands of nodes in the network, adding yet another node only marginally increase the redundancy and resiliency of the network. So the question then becomes a matter of personal judgement of how much that added redundancy and resiliency is worth. For the absolutist, it is absolutely worth it and everyone on this planet should do their part.
What is the magical number of nodes that makes it counterproductive to add new nodes? Did he do any math? Does BCH achieve this holy grail safe number of nodes? Guess what, nobody knows at what number of nodes is starts to be marginally irrelevant to add new nodes. Even BTC today could still not have enough nodes to be safe. If you can't know for sure that you are safe, it is better to try to be safer than sorry. Thousands of nodes is still not enough, as I said, it is much cheaper to run a full node as it is to mine. If it costs millions in hash power to do a 51% attack on the block generation it means nothing if it costs less than $10k to run more nodes than there are in total in the network and cause havoc and slowing people from using the network. Or using bot farms to DDoS the 1000s of nodes in the network. Not all attacks are monetarily motivated. When you have governments with billions of dollars at their disposal and something that could threat their power they could do anything they could to stop people from using it, and the cheapest it is to do so the better
You should run a full node if you're a big business with e.g. >$100k/month in volume, or if you run a service that requires high fraud resistance and validation certainty for payments sent your way (e.g. an exchange). For most other users of Bitcoin, there's no good reason to run a full node unless you reel like it.
Shouldn't individuals benefit from fraud resistance too? Why just businesses?
Personally, I think it's a good idea to make sure that people can easily run a full node because they feel like it, and that it's desirable to keep full node resource requirements reasonable for an enthusiast/hobbyist whenever possible. This might seem to be at odds with the concept of making a worldwide digital cash system in which all transactions are validated by everybody, but after having done the math and some of the code myself, I believe that we should be able to have our cake and eat it too.
This is recurrent argument, but also no math provided, "just trust me I did the math"
The biggest reason individuals may want to run their own node is to increase their privacy. SPV wallets rely on others (nodes or ElectronX servers) who may learn their addresses.
It is a reason and valid one but not the biggest reason
If you do it for fun and experimental it good. If you do it for extra privacy it's ok. If you do it to help the network don't. You are just slowing down miners and exchanges.
Yes it will slow down the network, but that shows how people just don't get the the trade off they are doing
I will just copy/paste what Satoshi Nakamoto said in his own words. "The current system where every user is a network node is not the intended configuration for large scale. That would be like every Usenet user runs their own NNTP server."
Another "it is all or nothing argument" and quoting satoshi to try and prove their point. Just because every user doesn't need to be also a full node doesn't mean that there aren't serious risks for having few nodes
For this to have any importance in practice, all of the miners, all of the exchanges, all of the explorers and all of the economic nodes should go rogue all at once. Collude to change consensus. If you have a node you can detect this. It doesn't do much, because such a scenario is impossible in practice.
Not true because as I said, you can DDoS the current nodes or run more malicious nodes than that there currently are, because is cheap to do so
Non-mining nodes don't contribute to adding data to the blockchain ledger, but they do play a part in propagating transactions that aren't yet in blocks (the mempool). Bitcoin client implementations can have different validations for transactions they see outside of blocks and transactions they see inside of blocks; this allows for "soft forks" to add new types of transactions without completely breaking older clients (while a transaction is in the mempool, a node receiving a transaction that's a new/unknown type could drop it as not a valid transaction (not propagate it to its peers), but if that same transaction ends up in a block and that node receives the block, they accept the block (and the transaction in it) as valid (and therefore don't get left behind on the blockchain and become a fork). The participation in the mempool is a sort of "herd immunity" protection for the network, and it was a key talking point for the "User Activated Soft Fork" (UASF) around the time the Segregated Witness feature was trying to be added in. If a certain percentage of nodes updated their software to not propagate certain types of transactions (or not communicate with certain types of nodes), then they can control what gets into a block (someone wanting to get that sort of transaction into a block would need to communicate directly to a mining node, or communicate only through nodes that weren't blocking that sort of transaction) if a certain threshold of nodes adheres to those same validation rules. It's less specific than the influence on the blockchain data that mining nodes have, but it's definitely not nothing.
The first reasonable comment in that thread but is deep down there with only 1 upvote
The addition of non-mining nodes does not add to the efficiency of the network, but actually takes away from it because of the latency issue.
That is true and is actually a trade off you are making, sacrificing security to have scalability
The addition of non-mining nodes has little to no effect on security, since you only need to destroy mining ones to take down the network
It is true that if you destroy mining nodes you take down the network from producing new blocks (temporarily), even if you have a lot of non mining nodes. But, it still better than if you take down the mining nodes who are also the only full nodes. If the miners are not the only full nodes, at least you still have full nodes with the blockchain data so new miners can download it and join. If all the miners are also the full nodes and you take them down, where will you get all the past blockchain data to start mining again? Just pray that the miners that were taken down come back online at some point in the future?
The real limiting factor is ISP's: Imagine a situation where one service provider defrauds 4000 different nodes. Did the excessive amount of nodes help at all, when they have all been defrauded by the same service provider? If there are only 30 ISP's in the world, how many nodes do we REALLY need?
You cant defraud if the connection is encrypted. Use TOR for example, it is hard for ISP's to know what you are doing.
Satoshi specifically said in the white paper that after a certain point, number of nodes needed plateaus, meaning after a certain point, adding more nodes is actually counterintuitive, which we also demonstrated. (the latency issue). So, we have adequately demonstrated why running non-mining nodes does not add additional value or security to the network.
Again, what is the number of nodes that makes it counterproductive? Did he do any math?
There's also the matter of economically significant nodes and the role they play in consensus. Sure, nobody cares about your average joe's "full node" where he is "keeping his own ledger to keep the miners honest", as it has no significance to the economy and the miners couldn't give a damn about it. However, if say some major exchanges got together to protest a miner activated fork, they would have some protest power against that fork because many people use their service. Of course, there still needs to be miners running on said "protest fork" to keep the chain running, but miners do follow the money and if they got caught mining a fork that none of the major exchanges were trading, they could be coaxed over to said "protest fork".
In consensus, what matters about nodes is only the number, economical power of the node doesn't mean nothing, the protocol doesn't see the net worth of the individual or organization running that node.
Running a full node that is not mining and not involved is spending or receiving payments is of very little use. It helps to make sure network traffic is broadcast, and is another copy of the blockchain, but that is all (and is probably not needed in a healthy coin with many other nodes)
He gets it right (broadcasting transaction and keeping a copy of the blockchain) but he dismisses the importance of it
submitted by r0bo7 to btc [link] [comments]

This rally is a mirage, we are only in the beginning stages of this recession

TL;DR at the bottom
Hi guys, with the market rallying 20% from its "bottom", many people are expressing the sentiment that we should buy back into the market again because the "fed" or the "government" won't allow stocks to crash.
We will for sure see unprecedented actions taken by the fed and the government because they have both the motive and the political capital to enact such policies. However, I think this is a misguided reason to believe the market is currently making its "real" rally.
I am not not a permabear nor am I a permabull. I just try to objectively analyze the facts, apply a healthy dose of margin of safety, and then see if my conclusions are actionable.
For example, I posted my thesis on why we will enter a serious global economic downturn on Feb 9th 10 days before it happened. At the time we were at the height of the biggest bull market in our history, and I had gotten a lot of attacks on my thesis leading up to me consolidating my thoughts:
https://www.reddit.com/China_Flu/comments/f1fm6y/the_world_economy_will_enter_a_serious_downturn/
I continued adding more thoughts on things like the potential efficacy of Chloroquine 2 weeks before Trump announced it in a press conference and the media picked up on it, the potential collapse of American oil producers before the price war happened, casinos going under, helicopter money, bailouts, etc all before they were announced or the markets priced them in here:
https://www.reddit.com/China_Flu/comments/fede69/continued_thoughts_on_the_global_economic_impact/
And finally I talked about an upcoming inflection point coincidentally moments before Trump first announced Chloroquine/Hydroxychloroquine and 2 trading days before the "bottom" of the market:
https://www.reddit.com/stocks/comments/fleh7e/incoming_inflection_point_for_general_market/
So I'm perfectly happy to make bearish calls or bullish calls, they are dependent variables of independent and unbiased analysis. I hope I made a reasonable case for why I am not personally biased (although, for the sake of humanity, I do wish for progress and prosperity of course).
I think the market rally is largely a mirage, and we are not getting correct pricings. The rally is probably driven by two main sources:
So the capital displacement is relatively simple: If you're seeking shelter in "risk free" investments that has some yields, you're now competing with a buyer (federal reserve) that prints hundreds of billions up to whatever it wants. They're literally squeezing out capital from the finite treasuries.
If you want riskier high quality corporate bonds, the fed will be there.
If you want even equities, you're going to face competition for them in the future. At least that's what former chairwoman Jenet Yellen recently said about the possibility of expanding their powers to buy equities.
So money is getting squeezed into a smaller and smaller relative portion of the financial markets, and the artificial demand is driving yields down and prices up. I could write a whole thread about this, but let's stick with the explanation of price movement.
The second main reason for the recent rally is from institutional investors who are incorrectly modeling earnings/yield of equities. So the logic here is: trillions are injected into the economy (fiscal injections), those trillions will become earnings for companies at some multiplier of the original stimulus over x amount of time, and if we add this number to the unstimulated estimated earnings, we can model future earnings.
My issue with this model, is on two main assumptions:
The first assumption is the length of disruption caused by the threat of this virus.
This virus is not going to stop its serious disruption of behavior from economic actors. Especially not in a country like the US where the majority of people have a massive financial disincentive to seek out healthcare. Here's my logic:
For months I've been praising the governments and response of South Korea, Singapore, and Taiwan. With Taiwan being the absolute best at handling the virus. However, I have also been using them as my leading indicators for how the virus will progress and affect economic actors. What I have seen developing lately is not good.
Singapore is now calling for a shutdown, after they initially did a herculean job of containing their outbreak. I had hoped that they would develop procedures (that we can copy) needed to run an open economy while the threat of the virus looms in the background. But that is not what has happened. Instead, we are seeing growing numbers of new clusters forming, and quickly getting out of control. They are tightening and shutting down their economy rather than opening up more. This is our leading indicator. A government far more responsible and effective than us is resorting to shutting down.
Taiwan is faring better, but only because of their prohibitive ban on almost all foreign travelers (this is obviously devastating to their tourism sector and broader economy). Their economy and society remains open, with many if not most people having hardly any interruptions to their lives (aside from mask wearing). They are one of only 3 countries where all children are still going to school. However, even their economy is faltering as they try to balance the prohibitive actions needed to contain the virus and the economic need to keep things open. They are proposing an unprecedented stimulus/rescue package to bolster their economy. And I think it's a safe assumption that if they ever do open up to foreign travelers again, especially with covid19 having proliferated as it already has, then they will have to deal with massive outbreak clusters all over their island.
South Korea, which has probably the relatable and relevant model for us to copy, has recently extended its social distance campaign. South Korea is a far larger nation than Singapore or Taiwan. They have a climate similar to Seattle/New York. They had a major outbreak in Deagu but didn't shut their country down. They never even banned Chinese travelers, yes, they had Chinese tourists in their country while the outbreak was happening. They were among the first to widely use Hydroxychloroquine/chloroquine as a treatment for Covid19. They had among the lowest fatality rates. They contained their outbreak without shutting the whole country down.
Even South Korea can't truly return to normal and open their economy up.
So why, in our incredible American exceptionalism hubris, and far less competent leaders, do we believe we're going to come anywhere close to normalcy in the near future?
Let's look at the next assumption, that fiscal stimulus would end up as earnings for companies. There's no doubt some will end up as earnings, but only a small fraction of what is being modeled by those on Wall Street.
The average American don't even have $1000 in emergency funds, do we expect them to return to their normal consumption habits when they risk having hospital bills multiples of $1000 just from walking past the wrong person? Do you think Americans, as much as they love to spend, aren't going to put some of that stimulus check in their emergency funds rather than contribute it to the earning of some companies? Sure, there will be some "forced" spending of the money (food and necessities), but if anyone is modeling the multiplier effect from previous data, then they really don't appreciate how different this virus makes things. Even in the GFC, laid off people didn't really worry about the heightened threat of being hospitalized.
Finally, some investors believe the Fed and the government literally will do anything to keep the numbers up. If this is true, you should be buying silver (or gold), not stocks.
Monetary actions can be reversed relatively easily. They are far more dynamic tools. Fiscal actions are not. You put money in the hands of spenders, that money is gonna circulate. And you really don't have an easy way of reversing that. If we think the government is going to keep handing out stimulus checks, grants to businesses, and other fiscal stimulus, then the inflation predicted from the GFC will come true for this crisis.
The fall out of inflation will be difficult to truly understand. But I do think inflation will be disruptive enough to the economy that inflation hedge assets will outperform other assets at least in the short term. For example, if inflation goes to 5%, who's going to lend to companies for less than inflation? With costlier debt, equity yield goes down, and again, what investor wants yields less than inflation? Inflation is going to cause all kinds of disruptions. I think the disruptions will come down to less liquidity (credit will vanish with uncertain inflation) and higher economic friction (less efficiency).
So if the response to why the market has to go up is continuous fiscal (and some monetary) actions to prop up spending and earnings, then the question is how will fiscal actions be reversed? How do we get that money out after things go back to "normal"?
I think if we see equities rise from here, it'll be reflective of inflation rather than inflation-adjusted earnings. Silver would be the play here.
I have a lot more thoughts on this, especially on the time it takes to turn the gears of the financial system and why the inertia is moving us deeper into global recession, not out of it, but I'm running out of time and must end here.
TL;DR this is a fake rally, and if anyone really expects prices to continue rallying, buy silver instead
submitted by Starcraftduder to stocks [link] [comments]

Tea Leaves, QE and Int'l demand for the dollar. Why Printing Money won't cause inflation yet and how it delays the next leg. Warning: words, words, words, very boring, tl:dr at bottom.

Previous post:
https://www.reddit.com/wallstreetbets/comments/gbsyfk/tea_leaves_and_trade_wars_good_for_a_free_15_just/

This post is long, very long. Tl:dr at the bottom.

Where have the daily posts been lately? Well, we're still well within our original parameters, and volume continues to provide choppy earnings, but generally trending our margins of expected up/down. I'm trying to put up posts a couple/few days at a time, unless there is something specifically that needs to be discussed that affects the prediction model. If its a 'nothing special' day, I likely won't be posting. Worth noting, volume continues to be low after getting roused over the weekend, likely a result of Trumps remarks about retaliating against China. The "ups" were at 75-85m before that, and the last two days have been around the same area. Interestingly, today sideways move was very, very low, coming in at only 53.1M as of 0332PM EST, and 72.5m at closing. When volume is low, movement is very choppy, see the pre/post market for good examples. Scalp at your own risk.

Something that we need to make clear, is that our debt based economy (which we've had ever since we stopped balancing the federal budget) is based on the very obvious Ponzi scheme of "kick the can down the road", or "we promise we'll balance the debt next year, but we need our stuff now". The balancing never comes, and the can gets a little bigger each time.

The United States doesn't make enough in tax revenue to pay its bills, period. In a regular year, without beer flu or killer hornets, we're borrowing every year. Eventually, this was gonna crash if we didn't pay it down and start balancing the budget, which is not an American priority.

How is this financed, if we don't pay enough taxes?
Each year the USA takes out loans, via the selling of various bond type vehicles, to pay for its missing budget gap. Like a Ponzi scheme, this eventually collapses, as the US Gov't needs to use our tax dollars, which it already doesn't have enough of, to service these bonds. How does it use our tax dollars to service bonds, if it already doesn't have enough tax dollars? Why, just sell more bonds, silly! You know, like using a new credit card to pay last months credit card bill. What could go wrong? We've been doing this for many decades, building up the debt you read about.

Bonds are basically payed out two ways. Longer term bonds (like the 30 year) pay out every six months, at some rate that is set based on rates at the time of the issuing (30 year bonds generally have the highest interest rate, because they require the longest investment period). Additionally, they payout face value + any outstanding interest owed on the bond at maturity (expiration) . If the bond doesn't have an as-you-go interest payment, than the holder collects all of the accrued interest of the bond at maturity. There are some other small nuances, but this is the general "how they work". The payments every 6 months are a large portion of what I refer to when I say "servicing the debt". We were at 23T in debt in OCT 2019, and we're taking on 10T+ for this crisis.
If we calculated 25T at the current 30 year rate of 1.24% (obviously it'll be not this simple, some is higher, some is lower, and we'll need to see the balance sheet and bond info to calculate properly), that would mean every 6 months we paid:
310,000,000,000 or 310B, or 620B per year, just in interest. It adds up.

Why does this matter? Bonds are payed out in US currency. The strength of the US Bond is that it is revered around the world as the safest investment you could make. This gives the USA access to liquidity from other countries, and political power as the 'reserve' currency. It also helps establish the dollar as a "strong" currency, which is actually *not* always a good thing for international trading, for reasons such as it isn't always as profitable for other weaker nations to trade with us when their dollar isn't as good as ours, resulting in unfavorable rates for them. This actually reduces the amount of trade we have access to as a by-product.

While we're on topic, the amount of bond selling the USA does to generate liquidity is what you hear about being referred to as the 'debt ceiling'. If we don't raise the debt ceiling, we can't sell bonds (get loans) to other entities to pay our bills. Currently the debt ceiling is suspended, allowing us to go into the hole as much as we want, which further reinforces the Feds "infinite QE" position.

If the debt the USA is required to service is too great, than our own tax dollars will be doing nothing but paying interest on these credit card bills. Any anyone that has ever juggled that before can tell you, it eventually fails. What happens if the USA defaults? Many, many bad things. A lot of the value of US currency is specifically tied to the trust that the USA will never default. We'd see an immediate deep depression, if we're not already there, and currency would hyper-inflate in an extremely short amount of time, as demand for the dollar would immediately drop, dropping its value. Trump deciding to "not pay on our Chinese debt in retaliation for CV19" would be disastrous for our economy, and the world economy. We'd be extremely likely to lose our status as the 'reserve' currency of the world, which could fall to any other strong currency.

What was discovered, however, in the crash of 2008, is that Quantitative Easing (QE) doesn't cause hyper inflation when the dollar remains strong during a worldwide recession. That is, because the dollar IS the reserve currency, nations in turmoil seek to flock to it for safety, driving up its 'value', and countering the effects of inflation. When currency is hoarded by the nations flocking to it, world trade goes down significantly, driving up prices on goods and services, just as it had the affect here locally when banks hoarded the QE cash in 2008 rather than loaning it out as intended. Simply put, 'too scared to spend, but desperate to hoard' keeps the dollar from inflating.

The doubly constrains international trade, as a strong dollar already makes it more difficult for people seeking to import US goods internationally, because their currency conversion rate isn't very favorable, while making it easier for Americans to import other countries goods due to our stronger dollar. Further more, when dollars are hard to get, countries are unwilling to give them to other countries, and other countries only want dollars in exchange for their goods. Vicious cycle.

Why does any of this matter to your trading right now? The Bears that keep dying off are the ones that keep trying to find food in the middle of Winter. There isn't any food, you have to wait for spring. The QE process supports local AND international markets, and with the strong demand for the dollar world-wide right now, it won't inflate at nearly the rate you expect, until it just plain crashes.

OK, so what causes it to crash? Well, QE works by selling our debt (bonds) to other countries (or large institutions) to generate liquidity, and using said liquidity (formerly for buying various Gov bonds, and since QE began, by buying bonds and other longer term securities from the private sectors) to give to our own country more money to "get the wheels going". The Interest rates on the QE inside the country are going for near 0%-.25% to help spurn the economy, and although the bond market has also has low rates right now (Last Value for a 30 year 5/3/2020: 1.24%), it is still not an equal balance. The USA will owe more to these bond holders than it produces via its loans to the private sector(s). If those other countries stop having revenue to buy our bonds, the process fails to work, because it loses the necessary liquidity. If the Fed attempts to print without getting loans from other countries, thereby "printing" money out of air, the dollar will begin to devalue if enough is printed that worldwide demand for it begins to ease, lowering its demand levels and therefore its price.

Why would other countries not have the money to buy our bonds?

China: 20% unofficial unemployment rate:
https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-04-27/china-brokerage-retracts-estimate-that-real-jobless-level-is-20
(ctrl a + ctrl c before the bloomberg pop-up wall to copy the text and paste to notepad to read for free)

India: 27% unemployed:
https://www.firstpost.com/business/coronavirus-lockdown-indias-unemployment-rate-soars-to-27-11-for-week-ended-3-may-says-cmie-8334891.html

Unemployment rates in Europe expected to "near double":
https://www.reuters.com/article/us-health-coronavirus-eu-jobs/mckinsey-predicts-near-doubling-of-unemployment-in-europe-idUSKBN2210UZ

Simply put, there is gonna be a whole lot of "no fuckin tax money" going around, and a whole lotta people needing money for basics at the same time. This is gonna be a strange thing to dig out when everyone is printing money at the same time.

What does this mean to your tendies? Puts are simply not good overall play for the short term, outside of specific target movements (day trades, bad earnings, bankruptcy of an individual company, targeting a specific weak industry). I play straddle variations (and day trade shares) because it plays off of volatility increasing, which is should continue to do, although theta gangs are likely making the best reliable wages of all of us, selling hopes and dreams to dying bears. I'll likely switch to a few upward theta plays this week after my straddles tonight come back .

So! This post is already long, lets make it a little longer.

If you've been following along, you'll know I don't DD individual companies for you to bet on, but rather the market as a whole:
We know chicken, pork, dairy, potato, and onion farming are affected, and in multiple countries. (links in previous threads)
We know oil continues to be affected at rock bottom pricing, and oil futures suggest it will stay that way for a while (link in previous threads)
We know some types of home-based loans have been affected (HELOCs, and others further defined below).
We know unemployment is high, not just here, but world wide, 20%+ in multiple major countries.

u/Breezy_t has some great DD regarding the mortgages starting to wobble a bit, another one of our expected indicators. I expect to see this really start to move next month as the 3 delay and 4th month approaches with all of those payments suddenly due. While not all lenders did it this way, enough of them did that it should get ugly. If another stimulus is passed, I would expect this to get delayed, but won't guess how long without seeing the stimulus.
https://www.reddit.com/wallstreetbets/comments/ge5nnl/us_households_had_record_debt_when_the/

u/Sufficientlee shows us the Beef Industry, last of the major meat players in the USA has started to creak:
https://www.reddit.com/wallstreetbets/comments/ge3p01/1_in_5_wendys_out_of_beef/

u/Phosgene1394 brings us DD about confirmation of the 2nd Strain. I've read there are 19 in total so far, but a particular strain being very infectious, this is important because vaccinations against one may not work against others, like the flu:
https://www.reddit.com/wallstreetbets/comments/ge9s6m/beer_virus_mutated_spy_350_bois/

As previously mentioned, I reached out to a friend of mine at a major mortgage lender this weekend. She handles VA, FHA, and Conventional loans for home buyers, primarily. We didn't speak about commercial loans. Here is what she gave me:

VA loan minimum fico requirements bumped from 620-660.
FHA loan minimum fico requirements bumped from 640-660.
Conventional loans require minimum 700 fico or automatic bump to FHA loans, which are less favorable.

She also mentioned a couple of things I expected would happen, including the non-official delivery of them (no paperwork)
She was told to "use discretion" giving out home equity refi's.
She was told to "use discretion about companies/industries applicants work for" IE if your job might be affected by CV19, she might deny you based on "nothing". Because this could be seen as discrimination, you can't tell someone you didn't lend to them because they work for a restaurant, but you can tell them the bank simply couldn't qualify them at this time.
She also said the financial lending programs are sending out new guidance basically every day, updating and tightening requirements as we get farther into this and the bigger picture comes out.

Now, use your own judgement as to whether I'm making all of that up to fit my narrative, it's not something I can exactly source for you, for obvious reasons.

Here's what I can tell you about my straddle test plays over-night, which I've decided to back off on for now:
1st) +$124 for (1) straddle contract, but Trump ruined the test by rattling sabers with China
2nd) Would have broke even (+$) If I'd woke up on time, but instead I ate a small loss with an early retrace to strike eating my gains.
3rd - weekend) +$24 for (1) straddle contract due to a parabolic move overnight sunday reversing the down gap with an upward climb. I believe with the general upward trend that even down gaps will reverse like this moving forward until the bankruptcies / failures start to roll in.
4) -$270 Bought (3) straddle contracts on 5/5/2020 at EOD after that crazy downward plunge and some reversal, strike 287, and once again after hours went parabolic, resulting in the worst possible outcome, opening the next day at 287, almost exactly where I bought it. This is a good example, however, that my worst case scenario resulted in a slightly over 12% loss on the purchase, so this was relatively safe.

"What should I buy?"
Well, SPY is largely biased towards Tech, which is largely less affected by recession. If you're playing SPY, and you want larger returns than a straddle will give, I'd stick with calls, and don't oversize your bets and get eaten by down-gaps. You will lose some overnights, but you should win more than you lose. You could hedge an OTM Put for some cheap safety for a wide strangle if you're so inclined. I would generally try and use a strike close to a low-volatility low if it bounces down in the mid day, especially if you end up close enough to a high volume strike during the mid-day IV reduction. If you look back, 3/4 of the last gaps were down, but 7/10 of the last gaps were ups. Most importantly, as those last 3 gaps were in a row, they might simply be the 'pull back' of the previous 6 ups.

These are the industries I would bet against right now, if I weren't in SPY:
-Anything that sells: chicken pork, beef, dairy, potato, and onion as a primary source of revenue.
-Anything that is involved in the oil-supply chain, except maybe oil storage, we'll see if OPEC + friends's production reductions (9.7 million barrels per day) are enough to keep these from sky-rocketing. These stocks seem super unstable as their value is artificially super high for the short term until oil is under control again. Note that in the energy markets, non-oil power production has done fairly well.
-Mortgage lenders and PMI Companies starting next month. Note, these won't fall right away, so set your dates accordingly.
-Car manufacturers, these suffered terribly in 2007/8/9 and eventually had to be bailed out. The same thing is likely to happen again.

I'm tightening my expectations of daily movement from 1.5-2.5% up and 1.5% down, to .5-1.25% up, and .5-1.75% down , still not including any overnight gaps. Notably, these gaps have been following trend a bit more often lately. We'll also likely see more 'stall' days (-.5% to +.5%) as we seem to be in a low volume 'plateau' of sorts. If you day trade / scalp, its dicey out there so take your profits a bit early, if your runs start to waver pull out and re-enter if necessary, the downs are spiking hard this last week, and can reset an hour+ of gains in a single 1 minute bar.

Don't bet on the next "down" just yet, QE is a strong delay method but it doesn't plant crops. Fundamentals are most likely to win this fight in a big way, but you can't hurry them. QE is like building a 10 foot sandbag wall to stop a tsunami that you're expecting to arrive any day.

My positions currently?
Cash only day trading again until I have time to figure out my preferred theta plays, although some solar energy earnings are coming in next week and renewables have done very well so far, so I may dip my toe for a few calls there. If you can handle the waves, there is great scalping right now.

TL:DR: QE will keep destroying your puts because people don't know how QE works. Play shorts only with great DD, and safer play is avoid shorting tech all together. Short companies according to fundamentals, and be more confident (and riskier) in short term calls. Stop losses are getting chopped through and flash crashed, so try to stick to with-trend plays, not counter-trend. Calls > puts rights now. Good luck autists, +15% tendies for everyone.

edited for slightly less shitty formatting.
submitted by diicembr to wallstreetbets [link] [comments]

CoronaHedge #1 — State prices, Nuclear War, and — FROZEN — CONCENTRATE — $OJ

Now sit your butts down Or take a fucking knee U gonna wanna bookmark me!!!
The only thing I ask The 1 thing u must do Make some dough by me? A 😘and 💋 are due!
TLDR: FUCK dudes in the comments, calm down! Long Frozen Concentrate $OJ futures options May 1.10 July 1.20 and 1.30 – $OJ futures are a perfect CV hedge for many reasons and super undervalued.
I. State Prices and Global Thermonuclear War: Or why the market didn't crash until recently
We invest because we believe the future will be different than the present. We believe that some things will be more (or less) valuable in the future than they are today. Our job as investors is, to the best of our ability 1) determine what all the possible futures look like 2) how likely each of them is 3) how valuable the asset of interest is in each possible future and 4) how we should personally discount for the relative risk of each particular asset and each particular future, and for the time value of money (money in the future is worth less to us than money in our pockets right now).
FUCK!!!!!! No wonder we'd rather just P&D Tesla!!!!
Now hold up boys and girls there's something deep hidden in this model. Let's call each possible future world a state and assume just one period of time between the present and the future. We're here in the present state, and there are a number of different future states at some indeterminate time later (doesn't matter for this discussion). Here's the rule: no multiverses! When "the future" arrives, we are in only one particular state out of all the possible states. (Now of course states could share characteristics, but two states that were identical = one state, and one state that exactly shares the characteristics of two other future states A and B is, for this discussion, its own individual state C.)
Got it?
Let's say there are 3 future states of the world 10 years from now:
  1. 30% chance: Super-awesome economic, technological and cultural blossoming!!!! Stocks go WAY up, bonds do nothing.
  2. 50% chance: Malaise where technological growth stops, low economic growth, increasing healthcare costs as people get older (eek! sound familiar?). Stocks go slightly down, bonds go up somewhat but hey we get to clip our coupons each month.
  3. 20% chance: Global thermonuclear war.
In each of these three states, assets have different projected values. The value TODAY of each asset is directly related to both the chances of each of the 3 future states occurring and the projected values of the assets in each of those states, averaged over all possible states by all investors. This is a model of reality that is designed to communicate some important truths. For you fellow finance nerds or lapsed ones like me, you will know where I'm going with this, but state pricing lies at the heart of the Nobel Prize winning Black-Scholes options pricing formula.
Think of the three possible future states above as spots where investors also allocate their money today. Remember, there are only three states of the world—you've got no other choice. For each state, you'll decide how much of your total wealth you want to allocate, and in what particular assets.
For instance—if you believe (1) is more likely, you will be biased to putting more money in stocks today. If you think (2) is going to happen FOR SURE, and you are a huge risk taker, maybe you'll put all of your money in bonds and none in stocks.
What about state (3)? There's a 1% chance of global thermonuclear war. Will you be alive? Will the government be around? Will markets even exist? Will you even be able to collect on your investment?
From The Optimistic Thought Experiment by Peter Thiel (2008):
More generally, apocalyptic thinking appears to have no place in the world of money. For if the doomsday predictions are fulfilled and the world does come to an end, then all the money in the world — even if it be in the form of gold coins or pieces of silver, stored in a locked chest in the most remote corner of the planet — would prove of no value, because there would be nothing left to buy or sell. Apocalyptic investors will miss great opportunities if there is no apocalypse, but ultimately they will end up with nothing when the apocalypse arrives. Heads or tails, they lose.In a narrow sense, it seems rational for investors to remain encamped at the altar of the efficient market — and just tend their own small gardens without wondering about the health of the world. A mutual fund manager might not benefit from reflecting about the danger of thermonuclear war, since in that future world there would be no mutual funds and no mutual fund managers left. Because it is not profitable to think about one ’s death, it is more useful to act as though one will live forever.
Conclusion: There are states of the world which are effectively NOT INVESTABLE AT ALL.
OK Joshua. Now let's say Russia, China, and USA announce initiation of arms control measures, and they are effective! Everyone follows. Instead of 30,000 warheads, 10 countries end up with 3 each. We develop Pooranium-236, an engineered bacteria that converts all fissible uranium into the smoothest, sexiest compost that ever existed. So no more additional nukes ever. AMAZING! Great news!
But what happens to state (3)? If the risk of a civilization destroying global thermonuclear war goes to zero, but in its place we've got a 10% chance of non-extinction nuclear war where 50 medium yield nukes are dropped. Which would be really really bad, but (let's say) not likely to destroy the world or take the economy offline forever...what then?
The number of investable states just went from 2 to 3, and one of them is super bad. In fact, in this state, you just want to be all-in gold, crypto, and farmland. So your portfolio of stocks and bonds would be at most 0, and more likely a short.
CRITICAL INSIGHT: The world just got better, the chance of civilization's sure death went from 20% to 0%, but the markets dumped on the news.
If you substitute the coronavirus for (3), let's think about one of the various scenarios that could describe what happened from the time the virus was discovered:
As an exercise, consider an alternative scenario based on where we are right now, under the assumption that seems to be common that "we will get through this, but it will be tough". What happens if the virus mutates, and it turns out that nope there now is a really big chance we're all gonna be wiped out?
II. State prices
Back to a revision of our original model that doesn't include non-investable states for simplicity. There are three states of the world:
  1. 30% chance: Super-awesome economic, technological and cultural blossoming!!!! Stocks go WAY up, bonds do nothing.
  2. 50% chance: Malaise where technological growth stops, low economic growth, increasing healthcare costs as people get older (eek! sound familiar?). Stocks go slightly down, bonds go up somewhat but hey we get to clip our coupons each month.
  3. 20% chance: Coronavirus that's pretty bad but it is recoverable.
In finance, we assume the presence of a completely risk free asset (US gov't bond). A bond will pay $1 in each of those three states, no matter what (since you know you'll get your money back for sure). Whatever a bond that pays $1 at "the future" time currently costs is how we derive "time value of money" or the risk-free interest rate. For all you linear algebra nerds, think of the payoff vector of a bond in our model as [1,1,1] representing the three states of the world.
Now let's consider the other two other assets in this world. A stock, and (here we go!) ORANGE JUICE. In each state, a stock has a different expected return, because it will be more or less valuable depending on how the future ends up. Same goes for OJ. Let's say a stock trading at $1 today is worth $2 in state (1), $0.80 in (2) and $0.40 in state (3). Now this is very important. Normally if you have 3 future states of the world, each with some chance of occurring and a projected value of an asset in that state, you just take the expected value (including a discount for time, and for the fact that you're taking some risk) and you get a price.
Here we are doing something different. We are taking the prices of the 3 assets today, and under the no-arbitrage condition ("there's no free lunch" = you can't make more money than the risk free rate by taking no risk) trying to find a price we would pay TODAY for $1 in each future state alone. This is called the state price. A decent introduction with the math involved can be found in any finance book (for a real first-principles based textbook by a very clear and well-respected professor, I highly recommend "Investment Science" by Luenberger) or the first part of these lecture notes.
We won't go through the math involved, but the point to remember is that if you add up the state prices of each state (represented by the payoff vectors [1 0 0], [0 1 0], [0 0 1]), you get the price of the bond because you are guaranteed to have $1 in the future. And, to restate the last paragraph, if you add up the state price * the payoff of each asset in each state, summed over all the states, you get the current price of the asset.
So let's take the state prices as given and think about what happens when "things change".
Let's say the state prices we have derived are:
  1. $0.20
  2. $0.60
  3. $0.10
(Remember, it has to add up to the price of a bond, which will be less than $1 if the bond pays $1 guaranteed in the future).
What happens to the state price of (3) when the chance of it occurring goes from 20% to 90% and it is still investable. Remember, all you are trying to figure out is how much you would pay for $1 in that state, today.
It has to go up, and the state prices of the other two states have to go down, because they MUST sum to the price of the bond.
**(**Why does it have to go up? Think about it in the limit. Let's say it goes to 99%. There is a 99% chance state (3) will occur. How much do you pay for $1 in that state if it is a near certainty? A lot more than you would if the state had a 20% chance of occurring—no matter what that state looks like, as long as it is investible. In fact, you might even pay ABOVE $1 in certain cases, because depending on the alternatives, you think you can pick up assets on the cheap and so $1 in that state is lots more valuable on a relative basis than in other states.)
And since the price of any asset must equal the state prices x the value of the payoff in each state, the asset prices must change, in ways that depend on their relative values and (CRITICAL INSIGHT) how their payoffs in each state were impacted by the same change in the world that changed the chance of state (3) being the real future.
III. The hedge: "20 Questions" for discussion
  1. When people walk into the grocery store and are sick, or they are scared about getting sick and want to build up their immunity, which fruits and vegetables become, on the margin, more likely to catch their eye?
  2. How often (when was the last time?) and how frequently do you personally buy frozen orange juice in a can or the OJ (from concentrate) in a bottle/carton? What about the rest of the country? What implications does that have given your answer to Q1 for baseline demand in states (1) and (2) vs state (3).
  3. How attractive is concentrate vs fresh in times of supply chain disruption?
  4. How much of the total retail cost of OJ would you estimate the raw concentrate represents? What does that imply about the relationship between the price change at the producer level and the price change at consumer level and its effect on consumer demand?
  5. What sort of juices do they serve in hospitals and what is the relative distribution between fresh and concentrate? When someone is in the hospital for 2 weeks, how does their juice consumption change vs if they were at home for 2 weeks?
  6. What percent of the FCOJ supply is grown in Brazil? How does that geographic concentration compare to other tradable commodities? What is your assessment of the US-Brazil shipping supply chain in all (3) of the states?
  7. Where does one take delivery of a purchase made via futures contract? What does that imply if supply cannot suddenly reach those locations?
  8. What sort of functions characterize the parameters and scenarios above (in a "hand-wavey") and the relationships between them. E.g.: Is Brazilian transportation cost/breakdown a linear function of the different states? Of the price? A linear function between the changes in state (3) probability? What does the demand curve for FROZEN OJ look like in relation to the availability of fresh citrus or fresh squeezed juice? Etc.
  9. Does citrus have other beneficial compounds besides Vitamin C that may affect immunity? How many people know this right now, and how might that change?
  10. If the same thing that increases the CHANCE of (3) occurring (which also increases the state price) ALSO increases the projected value of OJ in that state INDEPENDENTLY, what implications does this have for the current price of OJ given the above discussion?
  11. What classes of functions might characterize price given your answer to Q8 and Q10? How does that compare to the types of functions that characterize price in states (1) and (2)? Why?
  12. If the functions that characterize price dynamics are different in each state, how would realized price charts look under those different classes of functions? What about the technicals and current volatility when state probabilities and payoffs change in response to new information?
  13. What is the definition of a "hedge" in light of the state price model and your answers to the questions above? What makes one hedge more attractive relative to another hedge? Does it matter if they need be explicitly hedging the exact same realized outcome, in the exact same way?
  14. Describe the FCOJ futures market and compare it in terms of size, volume, gross value, players. What implications does this have for marginal demand on the supply side and on the demand side? From producers, bottlers, speculators, and market makers?
  15. Define "volatility regime" and "phase change" in your own words, as it might relate to the discussion above and your answers to the questions above?
  16. What does the chart of FCOJ futures prices look like? What do you expect it to look like given the discussion above? Given your answers to Q8, Q10-11, Q15?
  17. What does the implied volatility of the options on OJ futures look like given your answer to Q16? "Compared to what?"
  18. How much activity/discussion is there of OJ futures online?
  19. Restate the argument being attempted in this post in your own words. How confident are you in the validity of this argument? How frequently have you seen posts like this show up on wsb? What might my motivation be?
  20. If all of the above is true, and the implications are extremely positive for the price of FCOJ, then why hasn't the price of FCOJ futures yet reflected that? What about the futures options?
submitted by _KissMeThruThePhone_ to wallstreetbets [link] [comments]

Foreign Exchange Rate Risk HUGE Silver/Gold Trading Firm FAILING in China!! (Bix Weir) Lesson 5 - Inherent risks of off exchange Forex trading China trade risk a decision for business: PM What is Leverage and margin in Forex??

The Shanghai branch of China's central bank has ordered commercial lenders to check for risks in their margin trading business, according to a memo obtained by Reuters. The move comes after margin Trading on margin increases the financial risks. Before deciding to trade in financial instrument or cryptocurrencies you should be fully informed of the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, carefully consider your investment objectives, level of experience, and risk appetite, and seek professional advice where needed. Behind China’s explosive stock rally in recent months has been a ramping up of bets that rely on borrowed money, adding risks to an increasingly volatile market. Margin Trading Adds to Risks This chapter focuses on the disordered warrants price market problem, prevailing before the introduction of short selling and margin trading in China's stock market, and how the introduction of the margin trading and short selling on March 31, 2010 will provide more completeness to Chinese markets by preventing abnormally high stock prices. Trading foreign exchange on margin carries a high level of risk and may not be suitable for all investors. The high degree of leverage can work against you as well as for you.

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Foreign Exchange Rate Risk

Many beginners look at margin or leveraged trading as a way to make huge gains while trading Bitcoin or other cryptocurrencies. With several exchanges (like BitMex) offering up to 100x leverage ... *This video is for what is leverage in forex what is margin in forex leverage and margin in forex leverage explained margin call explained margin explained forex leverage high leverage ... Understand the risks and opportunities associated with trading foreign currencies #IHub #InternationalHub Learn more by reading this article: https://interna... Get more information about IG US by visiting their website: https://www.ig.com/us/future-of-forex Get my trading strategies here: https://www.robbooker.com C... GET 3 FREE OPTIONS TRADING LESSONS https://bit.ly/2BGKVQl In this free video, I go over how to calculate your risk and your margin requirements when trading an Iron Condor.

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