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Kolanovic: The Tech Bubble Is Driven By Central Banks And Will Collapse; “This Time Is Not Different”

Kolanovic: The Tech Bubble Is Driven By Central Banks And Will Collapse; “This Time Is Not Different”

Having been a must-read voice of contrarian originality and market structure insight especially in the arcane realm of quant finance and derivatives for much of 2013-2016, about 3 years ago something flipped and JPM’s head quant, Marko Kolanovic abandoned his traditional skeptical perch and became ideologically aligned with the pro-central bank cabal of Fed apologists who refuse to see any signs of an asset bubble, claim the Fed can do no wrong, and generally mock anyone who warns that the injection of nearly $20 trillion in liquidity into the stock market will have a very unhappy ending. Kolanovic’s bizarre reversal went so far as to calling sites, such as this one, “fake news” as he continued to push for a bullish outcome to the debacle that was Q4 2018, if for all the wrong reasons (as this site explained repeatedly). In fact, Kolanovic’s forced transformation resulted in in-house confrontations with other JPM quants such as Nick Panigirtzoglou.

Well, in a world devoid of any logic or sense, some normality could have finally returned today when in his latest market commentary note, the real Kolanovic may be finally bacl, calling the market, or rather it best performing strategy – the low-vol/growth/momentum factor which is really just a fancy name for the handful of market-leading tech stocks- for what it is, namely one overinflated asset bubble, made possible by “central banks pushing global yields into negative territory (propping up defensive and secular growth/tech bond proxies), growth of passive indexation and momentum strategies (pushing assets into momentum, mega caps and low volatility stocks) as well as flows based on simplistic ESG schemes that just exponentiate the same crowding trends (e.g. very high correlation of ESG with low volatility, large size and momentum scores as well as sector concentration in tech).”

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

THE WOLF STREET REPORT: How the SoftBank Scheme Rips Open the Tech Bubble

THE WOLF STREET REPORT: How the SoftBank Scheme Rips Open the Tech Bubble

The biggest force behind the startup bubble in the US has been SoftBank. But the scheme has run into trouble, and a lot is at stake (12 minutes).

Weekly Commentary: Unassailable

Weekly Commentary: Unassailable

I’ve been here before and, candidly, it’s not much fun. Lodged in my mind this week was the brilliant quote from the 19th century German philosopher Arthur Schopenhauer: “All truth passes through three stages: First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as self-evident.”
It’s fascinating how it all works. Looking back, there was definitely a Bubble in 1999. Clearly, 2007 was one huge Bubble. Everything is obvious in hindsight, and most look back now and contend it was pretty conspicuous even at the time. Having toiled through both prolonged Bubble periods – arguing against deeply embedded bullish conventional wisdom – I can attest to the fact that the Bubble viewpoint was violently opposed at the late stages of both cycles.

I don’t feel I’m venturing out on a limb to predict that some years into the future the 2018 Bubble backdrop will be recalled as rather self-evident. Years of experimental “whatever it takes” global monetary stimulus (rates, QE and market manipulation) nurtured excess and imbalances on an unparalleled global scale. EM borrowed excessively, too much denominated in foreign (U.S. dollar!) currencies. The Federal Reserve (all central banks) held rates too low for much too long. Prices for virtually all asset classes were inflated to dangerous extremes.

The resulting Tech Bubble 2.0 dwarfed the earlier nineties version, culminating in a global technology arms race. China was a historic Bubble of reckless proportions. Protectionism and Trade wars were a scourge for markets and global growth. Unsound “money” fueled populism. In the end, the backdrop created a cauldron of deepening geopolitical animosities and flashpoints.
…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Morgan Stanley: The Tech Bubble “Can Burst At Any Moment, Without Warning”

Earlier this week, Goldman Sachs, whose market-timing calls leave much to be desired, declared that tech stocks are “not a bubble”, and went so far as to predict that the secular increase in tech names could continue for decades, spawning vivid memories of Goldman’s May 2008 prediction of $200 oil just months before the start of the second great depression, and before oil crashed more than $100/barrel, wiping out a generation of muppets.

However, it is now safe to say that with the exception of some truly naive individuals, virtually nobody believes Goldman any more, and thus Goldman’s “all clear” may be just the top-tick so many had been waiting for.

One skeptic is Bank of America’s Michael Hartnett who back in March, just as the tech sector suffered its first big rout of 2018, had the gall to tell the truth and observe that the “e-Commerce” sector, which consists of AMZN, NFLX, GOOG, TWTR, EBAY, FB, was now up 617% since the financial crisis, making it the 3rd largest bubble of the past 40 years, and at this rate – assuming no major drop in the 6 constituent stocks – was set to become the largest bubble of all time over the next few months.

Hartnett followed up this this week by noting that while so far Tech stocks have seen record inflows as they have emerged as the “defensive growth” sector of the late market cycle…

… the “big risk” is “as in 1998, that credit tremors spread and investors forced to deleverage from risk assets, raise cash”, while the “biggest risk” is a “quick, deep tech selloff.  Or, as Bloomberg’s Andrew Cinko put it on Friday it, “if the times get tough and investors must delever they will sell “what they own,” and that “those who are rotating to financials and banks this week and away from tech may simply be trading the frying pan for the fire.”

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Dot-Com Bubble 2.0 Is Bursting: Tech Stocks Are Already Down Half A Trillion Dollars Since Mid-2015

Dot-Com Bubble 2.0 Is Bursting: Tech Stocks Are Already Down Half A Trillion Dollars Since Mid-2015

Tech Bubble 2.0Do you remember how much stocks went down when the first dot-com bubble burst?  Well, it is happening again, and tech stocks are already down more than half a trillion dollars since the middle of 2015.  On Friday, the tech-heavy Nasdaq dropped to its lowest level in more than 15 months, and it has now fallen more than 16 percent from the peak of the market.  But of course some of the biggest names have fallen much more than that.  Netflix is down 37 percent, Yahoo is down 39 percent, LinkedIn is down 60 percent, and Twitter is down more than 70 percent.  If you go back through my previous articles, you will find that I specifically warned about Twitter again and again.  Irrational financial bubbles like this always burst eventually, and many investors that got in at the very top are now losing extraordinary amounts of money.

On Friday, tech stocks got absolutely slammed as the bursting of dot-com bubble 2.0 accelerated once again.  The following is how CNBC summarized the carnage…

The Nasdaq composite fell 3.25 percent, as Apple and the iShares Nasdaq Biotechnology ETF (IBB) dropped 2.67 percent and 3.19 percent, respectively.

Also weighing on the index were Amazon and Facebook, which closed down 6.36 percent and 5.81 percent, respectively.

LinkedIn shares also tanked 43.63 percent after posting weak guidance on their quarterly results.

Overall, LinkedIn is now down a total of 60 percent from the peak of the market.  But they are far from the only ones that have already seen their bubble burst.

Many of the biggest names in the tech world have gotten mercilessly hammered over the past six months of so.  Just look at some of the famous brands that have already lost between 20 and 40 percent of their market caps…

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

The Death Of Hopium

The Death Of Hopium

Tech Bubble 3.0 is in the process of bursting

As many readers know, I spent 13 years living and working in Silicon Valley before partnering up with Chris to start Peak Prosperity.

I got my MBA at Stanford in 1999 when the dot-com bubble was at its zenith, and worked for both a VC-funded start-up as well as one of the biggest Internet juggernauts (Yahoo!). I lived in Palo Alto, the central core of the tech scene.

As a result, I have a pretty good read on how Silicon Valley works. Many of the folks I worked and went to school with are now in leadership positions at the big operating companies, VC firms and hedge funds in that ecosystem — so I have personal knowledge of who’s making the decisions.

And it’s no secret that I think things have degenerated into a steaming pile of hucksterism.

The “engine of our economy”, the “cradle of innovation”, the “land of tomorrow” — whatever breathless hyperbole the fawning media is using this week — is a sham. Silicon Valley has become a factory of hype, funneling gobs of early-stage capital into whatever half-credible concepts it can think of, and then pimping the artificially-inflated initial results of those tarted-up ventures to whichever “greater fool” is willing to acquire it or buy its IPO. Let that idiot figure out if it will ever turn a profit…

Like the too-cozy relationship between DC and Wall Street, I see a similar one between Wall Street and the Tech sector. They collude to pump out as many opportunities as they can — private placements, acquisitions, IPOs, secondary offerings — to cash out the insiders and foist the long-term financial risk onto the “dumb money” (pension funds, foreign capital, retail investors, corporations desperate to enter the “digital age”).

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Mark Cuban Warns: This Bubble Is Far Worse Than The Tech Bubble Of 2000

Mark Cuban Warns: This Bubble Is Far Worse Than The Tech Bubble Of 2000

Just over a year ago, we warned that while the world of speculative capital is focused intently on the Twitter and Facebook #Ref/0 fundamental valuations in the publicly-traded equity markets, the real dot-com 2.0 bubble is occurring in the private markets. Few paid attention, prefering the head in the sand “well the music is still playing” meme; but one (or two) billionaires noticed, and with all eyes intently focused on Nasdaq 5,000 (as some indicator that we made it back to Nirvana), Mark Cuban unleashes uncontestible exposition why is this bubble far worse than the tech bubble of 2000.

It is different this time… and, as Mark Cuban explains, far worse…

Ah the good old days.  Stocks up $25, $50, $100 more in a single day.  Day trading was all the rage.  Anyone and everyone you talked to had a story about how they had made a ton of money on such and such a stock. In an hour.  Stock trading millionaires were being minted by the week, if not sooner.

You couldn’t go anywhere without people talking about the stock market.  Everyone was in or new someone who was in. There were hundreds of companies that were coming public and could easily be bought and sold.  You just pick a stock and buy it. Then you pray it goes up. Which most days it did.

Then it ended. Slowly by surely the air came out of the bubble and the stock markets declined and declined till the air was completely gone.  The good news was that some people were able to see it coming and get out. The bad is that others were able to get out, but at significant losses.

If we thought it was stupid to invest in public internet websites that had no chance of succeeding back then, it’s worse today.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

 

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