5 Jan 2024

One of the major risk for equity markets in the short-run is Euphoria that prevailed at the start of the year. In other words, positioning is uber-bullish and can only go down from here

As Goldman trader Cullen Morgan writes, after 9 consecutive weeks higher in the S&P (quite a rarity), sentiment and positioning in US equities is very stretched. On the positioning front, US futures length (see chart below) now stands near record highs. In past instances when non-dealer positioning has been greater than $130bn, near term returns have been strong, while returns further out (3-months to 1-year) tend to skew more negative… With the latest data at +$158bn, Goldman traders are very wary of this now being a larger headwind. Similarly, CTA positioning in US Equities is approaching 2023 highs. Bottom-line: any geopolitical or macro news (e.g too hot US jobs print) might lead to higher bond yields might might put some downside pressure on equity markets.


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