NaughtyPines
Long

MARKET PERSPECTIVE: BROAD MARKET UPTURN "UNREMARKABLE"

CBOE:VIX   Volatility S&P 500 Index
Suffice it to say, the duration of the broader market rally from mid-February to the present has caught a large number of traders by surprise, a number of whom have repeatedly attempted to call tops or turning points that would see a major sell-off of some kind and have rued the continuation of the upward trend that has yet to meaningfully break lower.

Call this upturn what you want: "irrational," "non-fundamental," "poorly structured" and posit whatever reason you like for it: petro speculation, risk off/risk off, short squeeze, comparative dovish/hawkishness of various Central Banks, algos, the Plunge Protection Team ... .

I frequently say that, as a premium seller, "I don't care about market direction; I care about volatility", since volatility drives premium, and low volatility is not the friend of a premium seller. However, a more nuanced, accurate statement would be that "I care about volatility level for entry, and the degree to which the underlying moves thereafter." So that fact that we've experienced an oversized move here is not lost upon me ... .

But the fact is, if you look at the market from a volatility perspective, the upmove is not particularly unprecedented and, in the broader scheme of things, not all that lengthy in duration ... yet.

I've examined the length of time the VIX             spends in troughs between peaks of at least VIX             >20. It's rather unscientific, but I think you'll get the drift of the thing, which is that the market spends substantial periods of time in troughs between VIX             >20 peaks: they've been periods as short as 60 odd days and as long as 250 plus days with the average being about 140 or so days between >20 peaks over the previous 7 "peak to trough" periods.

Naturally, some of the sustained low vol occurred during QE , so it's questionable whether we're going to have to wait another 120 odd days before another >20 vol spike and/or market downturn (the last >20 candle was the 2/29 weekly a month ago), particularly with further Fed tightening on the horizon.
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