Just a week before the biggest spike in US equity market volatility ever – something ‘no one’ in the mainstream even thought possible – Universa’s Mark Spitznagel warned “a reckoning always follows…something really big is coming”
This is an age of massive artificial economic imbalances and systemic risks.
Repress change, and you repress all that it means. Repressing it is sheer hubris and, in Dylan’s words, “beyond your command.” You can only defer it, not stop it. (Juxtapose this view with outgoing U.S. Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen’s ambitious claim that there will not be another financial crisis “in our lifetimes.”) When we try enforcing stability by decree, a reckoning always follows. An unsustainable boom leads headlong to an inevitable bust. A hard rain falls.
Rather than fear it, we should “tell it and think it and speak it and breathe it.” This is Dylan’s resolve. Something really big is coming. Let the central bankers try to keep standing in its way, but as investors we need to recognize and accept its logical consequence of a return to the meaning of volatility. Change and volatility are good. “There is nothing perpetual but change”—according to Mises, who surely must have loved Dylan just as much as I do.
While this is a common theme from the guru of tail risks, his timing could not have been better. As some might say “nailed it,” and Spitznagel was asked to explain how to spot market crashes coming on Bloomberg TV this week…
Spitznagel begins by pointing out the obvious, and crushing the business models of 99% of the mainstream media’s guests:
“My job is not picking the top. My job has always been risk mitigation. Picking crashes is impossible… timing crashes is impossible. If you require a forecast in order for your investment thesis to do well, then I think you’re doing it wrong.“
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