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2/7/2018 "The VIX Finally Went Bananas": Morgan Stanley's Post Mortem Of Everything That Happened | Zero Hedge

"The VIX Finally Went Bananas": Morgan Stanley's Post Mortem Of Everything That Happened

by Tyler Durden
Tue, 02/06/2018 - 08:54

Last July, Morgan Stanley's Chris Metli, executive director of the bank's institutional equity division, wrote an article - posted here - looking at what would happen "if
the VIX goes bananas" which previewed yesterday's results with eerie accuracy.

And, a little over six months later, the VIX did finally go bananas. Here is Metli's Post Mortem of what happened.

Post Mortem
by Chris Metli of Morgan Stanley
With a 4% drop in cash equities and even greater decline in futures, the VIX finally went bananas rising 20 points to the highest level since Aug 2015, and the
weighted average 1-month VIX futures rose 96%.  This creates more supply from systematic funds for the rest of the week and nearly bankrupted the inverse
VIX ETPs with NAVs down 96%.  To summarize the price action and implications:

Some of the selling on Monday likely reflected investors anticipating systematic supply on Tuesday – this means the $30 to $35bn QDS estimates for sale
Tuesday (detailed below) may net down to $15 to $25bn.  This is still enough to have negative impact on markets though and will be compounded by dealer
short gamma positions.
Anticipation of further supply later in the week from both annuities and risk parity funds could bring in more fast money sellers Tuesday.
The near bankruptcy of the inverse VIX ETPs will be a very negative headline, and the several billion dollar loss for holders, largely retail, will scare some out
of the market or force liquidations of other products to raise cash.
Institutional vol sellers will likely cover exposures as well in the coming days and weeks.  While these positions will not take losses on the same scale of
the VIX ETPs (because they are generally scaled more conservatively) unless there is a quick snap back many investors will likely take down risk, supporting
implied volatility in the process.
On the positive side, much of the short gamma exposure in the VIX market has been wiped out, leaving less risk of a further volatility spike from here.
Investors were not in panic mode despite the selloff, as this move has ‘only’ wiped out one month of P/L.  As noted earlier in one sense this is good as it
might slow discretionary supply, but it also highlights that discretionary investors are still very long risk and could easily turn sellers.
Who are the incremental buyers here?  Macro funds betting on the vol unwind that has now happened could cover and turn buyers, but for real support the
market needs deep pocket asset allocators to step in.  Vol target supply will eventually wane as volatility peaks and/or leverage comes down, but they likely
remain sellers for the next several days.
Net-net: more supply likely pushes markets lower Tuesday and potentially Wednesday, and buyers will need to see signs of slowing supply and
stabilization to come back in.  Short-dated implied volatility has likely peaked, while the back end of the vol curve likely rises over the next week and
realized volatility will continue to move higher.  This is unlikely the turn of the cycle as the selloff is largely technical and positioning driven, and likely
not large enough to feed back into the real economy and become fundamental, so dips will be bought after the systematic supply and vol unwinds
abate.

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QDS came into Monday expecting nearly $5 to $10bn of equity supply from systematic funds, principally annuities as they tend to react quickest to recent
increases in realized volatility.  That supply likely contributed to the move lower, but it was then compounded by dealers having to hedge their short gamma
exposures.  QDS estimates that in total dealers likely had to sell $11bn of S&P 500 futures on the way down today.

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2/7/2018 "The VIX Finally Went Bananas": Morgan Stanley's Post Mortem Of Everything That Happened | Zero Hedge

The selling was exacerbated by a lack of liquidity – as the MS Futures team has noted, available size in ES futures has been deteriorating this year (left chart below)
and it dried up sharply Monday afternoon with average available size at the top of the book falling to ~75 contracts between 3:30 and 4:00 pm versus typical levels
between 500 and 1000 seen last year.

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After this violent move lower, QDS estimates that annuity funds will now need to sell between $30 and $35 bn of equities on Tuesday, and a similar amount
Wednesday.  Realized volatility has moved through most funds’ target ranges, so this is the point of max pain, but further volatility from here could still add to the
supply picture for later in the week.

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2/7/2018 "The VIX Finally Went Bananas": Morgan Stanley's Post Mortem Of Everything That Happened | Zero Hedge

As noted in previous pieces, risk parity funds were likely not sellers yet.  But that is now at risk of changing since despite the rally in bonds today, it was likely
overwhelmed by the selloff in equities, and realized volatility for risk parity portfolios is now starting to rise.  Timing and sizing this flow is not as clear as for
annuity funds, but if the actual deleveraging follows QDS models, there could be $10 to $20bn of supply in both equities and bonds later this week.  The flight
to safety in bonds will certainly help slow any deleveraging and keeps the tail scenario of stocks and bonds falling together off the table, but near-term they could still
be modest sellers given the increases in volatility across asset classes.

https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018-02-06/vix-finally-went-bananas-morgan-stanleys-post-mortem-everything-happened 4/12
2/7/2018 "The VIX Finally Went Bananas": Morgan Stanley's Post Mortem Of Everything That Happened | Zero Hedge

The VIX market saw the net buying pressure on record.  For background on the risks that materialized Monday see If the VIX Goes Bananas, this is What it Might
Look Like from July 2017.  Details and implications:
The ETPs had to buy 282,000 VIX futures to rebalance their short gamma… needless to say this is the largest VIX buy in history, dwarfing Friday’s previous
record of 78,000.  Dealers hedging their short gamma exposures likely contributed to VIX futures demand as well.
Most of the rally in VIX futures happened after the 4:00 pm cash close, not leaving a lot of time for investors or the issuers of the VIX ETPs to react.
This move was incredible particularly because VIX and VIX futures were already elevated – and the amount of volatility to buy exceeded QDS estimates (below
shows what QDS estimated coming into Monday) and speaks to the size of the short vol exposures in the market:

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2/7/2018 "The VIX Finally Went Bananas": Morgan Stanley's Post Mortem Of Everything That Happened | Zero Hedge

Whether the inverse ETPs continue to exist tomorrow is up for debate at time of this writing (contact us for details), but for the broader market the implication is
clear:  the inverse ETPs have effectively delevered down to zero, going from short 230,000 VIX futures to short just 4,000.  (note exact numbers will need
to be updated to reflect creations / redemptions reported overnight).

On a positive note this means there is much less risk going forward of further vol to buy from rebalancing of these products.   On a negative note
holders of the inverse ETPs lost $3.4bn as the products went nearly bankrupt and this removes a steady source of volatility supply over the last year.

The VIX move of 20 was massive relative to the SPX selloff of 4%, pushing the rolling 1-month beta of VIX to SPX to all-time highs.  Prior to 4pm the VIX futures move
had been relatively modest versus the move in VIX, but that rapidly changed post close as VIX futures rallied nearly 80% as much as VIX spot – a rare occurrence as
the ratio is usually 40-50% – as the massive 280k futures that had to be bought had an impact.

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2/7/2018 "The VIX Finally Went Bananas": Morgan Stanley's Post Mortem Of Everything That Happened | Zero Hedge

Prior to the VIX futures explosion post cash close, the bid to the front of the term structure and massive steepening of skew was reflective of the pain dealers
likely felt from the move lower in spot, forcing them to cover their short vol positions with short dated options (impacting VIX more than longer-dated vols) – as noted
previously skew was too flat given the large short downside vol exposures dealers were sitting on.  Demand to cover short convexity risks also drove VVIX (the
implied volatility of VIX to a record high of 177%, outpacing even the large move in VIX.

https://www.zerohedge.com/news/2018-02-06/vix-finally-went-bananas-morgan-stanleys-post-mortem-everything-happened 7/12
2/7/2018 "The VIX Finally Went Bananas": Morgan Stanley's Post Mortem Of Everything That Happened | Zero Hedge

Even though Feb and March VIX futures caught up late day, longer-dated VIX futures lagged and June VIX futures are actually still trading below 10 year medians. 
This is typical behavior in a sharp selloff – the cheapest dollar price / shorter dated options get bid first, and only after investors begin to expect the higher vol
environment to persist for longer do they buy longer-dated options to hedge.    Given that today’s move up in vol and skew was led more by dealers repricing risk than
end user demand for puts, longer-dated volatility should reprice higher in the coming days.  Shorter-dated vols are already off their closing levels, retracing some of
the post cash close bid.

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Comments

Sort by Thread Date Order Oldest Items per page 50

Dr.Strangelove • Feb 6, 2018 8:13 AM


9 Permalink
0 Annnnnd its gone.....

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TGwZVGKG30s

5 Life of Illusion  Dr.Strangelove • Feb 6, 2018 8:16 AM


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0
but for real support the market needs deep pocket asset allocators to step in. 
 
FED?

2 eclectic syncretist  Life of Illusion • Feb 6, 2018 8:19 AM


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0
Salvador Dali captures the essence of today's markets

http://archive.thedali.org/MWEBimages/Collection%20Images/OILS_images%2…

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2/7/2018 "The VIX Finally Went Bananas": Morgan Stanley's Post Mortem Of Everything That Happened | Zero Hedge

3 Lost in translation  Dr.Strangelove • Feb 6, 2018 8:20 AM


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0
Can someone please explain how the VIX is traded?  I don’t understand it.

All I know about VIX is that it’s the volatility index, sometimes called the “fear” index - that’s it.

Why is it more significant than the S & P 500?


Help...

2 Déjà view  Lost in translation • Feb 6, 2018 8:27 AM


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0
Mr. Market exhibits agonal respiration after slipping on a banana peel 10 years ago...

1 bidaskspread  Déjà view • Feb 6, 2018 8:58 AM


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0
Vix 's Bath salt rally!!! Eating trader's faces off in 10 percent increments....look at the lemmings go....

1 mendigo  Lost in translation • Feb 6, 2018 9:00 AM


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0
Not that I am in anyway qualified but i gather the vix is index tracking cost of options.

0 Lost in translation  mendigo • Feb 6, 2018 8:49 PM


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0
Thanks much!

2 1 Alabama  Lost in translation • Feb 6, 2018 9:17 AM


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0
The VIX is a bigger wave to catch, ride, and then fall off of, that's why.

2 GooseShtepping Moron  Lost in translation • Feb 6, 2018 10:10 AM


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0
The VIX is calculated from the price of S&P 500 options. Specifically, all out of the money calls and puts for both the front month and the second
month. In theory, this let's you know the "implied volatility" of the market over the next 30 days, i.e. how far the market will have to move up or
down in order to square with the spot price of the market on the the options' expiry day.

The VIX is only an index value and not an actual asset in itself. It is just a measure of volatility. In order to trade the VIX, investors will need to
buy an ETF that tracks its performance. It is also possible to trade VIX futures contracts directly. These are all derivatives, i.e. bets placed on the
performance of something else.

0 Lost in translation  GooseShtepping Moron • Feb 6, 2018 8:46 PM


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0
Many thanks for your detailed reply, I sincerely appreciate it.  Hope you see this post.

Aeonios • Feb 6, 2018 8:14 AM


1 Permalink
0 Full faith and credit, and of course 'animal spirits'.

0 DingleBarryObummer  Aeonios • Feb 6, 2018 8:20 AM


Permalink
1
Donald Trump: Conjurer of Animal Spirits | Ponzied.com

Evan Wilson • Feb 6, 2018 8:14 AM


7 Permalink
0 And its gone!

 
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TGwZVGKG30s

God, it never gets old!

 
 

2 66Mustanggirl  Evan Wilson • Feb 6, 2018 8:27 AM


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0
That’s why God made mattresses......and small safes that are well hidden that hold small stores of silver bullion and cash.

0 Hillarys Server  Evan Wilson • Feb 6, 2018 8:41 AM


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0
Hilarious clip, thanks!
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2/7/2018 "The VIX Finally Went Bananas": Morgan Stanley's Post Mortem Of Everything That Happened | Zero Hedge
p,
A certain bank, I'll call it WF to not give it away, tried to do this to me.

They said they'd put my life's savings in a retirement account which allocates my savings into 30 equity sectors, health, technology, transport and
so on, which represent the entire economy.

Each of the 30 sectors is a separate managed equity fund.


And they'd be reallocating constantly.

So every day, or whenever, they'd sell my health fund and buy a technology fund and the next day a transportation fund and then an agriculture
fund. Just swishing from fund to fund to fund forever and ever without end.

So I said, "Who pays the fund fees each time you do that?"

No answer.
I ran for the hills.

1 Ajax-1  Evan Wilson • Feb 6, 2018 9:12 AM


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0
It's so true.

goldinpenguin • Feb 6, 2018 8:16 AM


1 Permalink
0 some sand in the markets vaseline

0 eclectic syncretist  goldinpenguin • Feb 6, 2018 8:26 AM


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0
Goldman buys a round of margin call drinks for all the muppets

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hZ9C2X7hyG8

TheWholeYearInn • Feb 6, 2018 8:19 AM


1 Permalink
0 So what else do you expect from a 'Banana Republic'?

2 Endgame Napoleon  TheWholeYearInn • Feb 6, 2018 9:05 AM


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1
Well, a few people get wildly rich, and since they have children, it is for the good of children. Then we have our womb-productive citizen /
noncitizen serfs at the bottom. You can call this a Banana Republic, but due to what is affectionately called “the system,” the womb producers do
not have to worry about the direction of this economy. The taxpayers in this Banana Republic, USA, pay them to have sex and reproduce through
monthly welfare that covers their rent and groceries and the recently doubled, refundable child-tax-credit welfare that now equals half of the
yearly pay of many for full-time work, whereas it used to max out at 1/3rd of yearly pay at $6,444. Our country now has 5% of the world’s
population and 25% of its prisoners. What is Banana Republic-like about that? Government pays the gentle, responsible “working families” for
working part time to stay below the earned-income limits for the womb-productivity-handout programs and the cut off for the tax welfare. That
takes care of morality and a sound economy at the same time, because as we all know, population growth via sex and reproduction is the central
(and only) aspect of economic growth. It does not matter that we already have a heaving, ample, youthful generation of citizens — larger than the
Baby Boom that sired them — and an unending flood of young, baby-making immigrants, but yet, other than the top 20% of dual-high-
earner parents in their dream homes and on their 14th excused babyvacation to Europe for the year, the rest of the population is going from a
middle-class lifestyle to blighted neighborhoods and a miserable quality of life. Subsidized buns in the oven at the bottom are the solution to
keeping the Banana Republic at bay, as long as their moms work temporary and part-time jobs and are “career” women. The other half of the
economic plan to avoid a Banana Republic, conveniently, involves concentrating the few good salaried jobs in fewer households via assortative
mating at the top and keeping almost all of the fruits of business production at the top, too. It will expand the economy, like it did in the days of
aristocratic power marriages and womb-productive, cake-fed serfs at the bottom. What is Banana Republic-like about aristocrats, entrenched civil
servants and church royalty, throwing cake crusts (LOTS of them in the USA) to reward the serfs for sex and reproduction? The aristocrats of Old
Europe saved the womb-productive adults and the babies through this cake throwing, writing religious treatises about it to congratulate
themselves for piety, rather than going on CNN to virtue signal with a publicity benefit. 

This is progress. 

shankster • Feb 6, 2018 8:19 AM


4 Permalink
0 Shithole!

shankster • Feb 6, 2018 8:20 AM


0 Permalink
0 PPT & circuit breakers.

CHX13 • Feb 6, 2018 8:21 AM


2 Permalink
0 Short VIX or long VIX now... ? 

Very Vexing VIX !

Last of the Mi… • Feb 6, 2018 8:22 AM


2 Permalink
0
Net Net? More supply side pushes markets lower. You have to be kidding me. It's not a fucking thing to do with QE that has decimated, Main
Street, Wages, and dry fucked every consumer anywhere with stealth inflation. (new car prices anyone..  anyone. . Bueller?) and the result is "supply
side pushing markets lower". What a fucking joke.

HillaryOdor • Feb 6, 2018 8:23 AM


1 Permalink

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0
The long VIX ETFs are still good, right?

I guess I missed the boat on that one. I wanted to buy TVIX yesterday morning but chickened out after it was already up 8%. I thought stocks
would come back up some before the big crash.

Fiat Burner • Feb 6, 2018 8:25 AM


0 Permalink
0 This is the "subprime is contained" moment of this bubble. I give it a year or less to unfold completely. 

Hillarys Server • Feb 6, 2018 8:31 AM


5 Permalink
0 I own some humble silver scraps but don't own stocks so for years I've been hoping equities would crash to the lowest level of Dante's hell to
prove my strategy correct.

But I learned last week that a close family member owns a lot of equities.

So now even the joy of watching people lose money and jump out of windows has been mercilessly taken from me.
Life is so unfair.

1 firststef  Hillarys Server • Feb 6, 2018 8:37 AM


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0
lol that cracked me up like crazy =)

5 Hillarys Server  firststef • Feb 6, 2018 8:56 AM


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0
Haha, thanks. I was just going to delete it and write "duplicate" or something and saw your comment.

Yes, after stopping work for now at 61 I've watched doom porn on YouTube every day for the past three years while holding tightly onto my roll
of silver dimes and scap metal and saying "Die market die. Die a painful death you equity fcckers."

And waking up the next day and repeating the process year after year. And everyone is making money but me including my retard relatives who
tell me "Trump peed on a bed. He peed on it. Putin's got him."

Now I try to mainly just read ZH for news and on YouTube instead of news I watch documentaries on WW1, WW2, the fall of Rome, Greek
philosophers, AI, American history and summaries of each of the Great Books which I had never read. Now I'm gaining something every day.
I realized I had watched three hours of Infowars and so on every day for two or three years and it's been great fun but it hasn't accumulated to
anything spiritually for my life or prepared me to feel good when I lie on the hospital bed with tubes in me and prepare to meet my master.

3 nuerocaster  Hillarys Server • Feb 6, 2018 9:13 AM


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0
Because of course you can't book profits along the way.

In junkie nation it's all addictive behavior all the time.

It's their cell phone blankie, social media imaginary friends, children's games on tv, porn, psychotropics,etc, etc.

Because they're afraid of just about everything. Not that they don't have a high opinion of themselves.
So the desperate search goes on to suppress, to assuage, fear. To prop up egos.

1 Ajax-1  Hillarys Server • Feb 6, 2018 9:15 AM


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0
We have much in common and I feel your pain.

buzzsaw99 • Feb 6, 2018 8:33 AM


5 Permalink
0 Looks like i picked the wrong week to stop sniffing glue.  [/Steve McCroskey]

2 TheWholeYearInn  buzzsaw99 • Feb 6, 2018 8:40 AM


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0
Billy, Have you ever seen a grown man (swimming) naked?

0 Ajax-1  TheWholeYearInn • Feb 6, 2018 9:16 AM


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0
Billy, do you like gladiator movies?

JailBanksters • Feb 6, 2018 8:35 AM


0 Permalink
0 It's like Physics, for every action there's an equal and opposite reaction.

In the stock market it equal to, for every pump, there's an equal and opposite dump.

ZeroPoint • Feb 6, 2018 8:42 AM


3 Permalink
0 Don't worry, I am sure the bigs will get a do-over if they lost any money.

gmak Feb 6 2018 8 53 AM


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