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As Wall Street Tries To Trade On Trump’s Tweets, Problems Emerge



zerohedge.com / by Tyler Durden / Jan 14, 2017 1:33 PM

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Remember when investing was about reading financial reports, following news, anticipating cash flows, inferring the impact of monetary policy on risk prices, occasionally looking at charts (because while traders say past performance is not predictive, virtually everyone expects a chart to forecast precisely what will happen). Well, now it is about simpler things: like what asset will China’s great bubble-chasing army send into the stratosphere or, as has been the case over the past few weeks, what will Donald Trump tweet about next.

However, as Wall Street’s traders, starved for alpha, scramble to convert Trump’s tweeting into profitable trades, they have run into problems, and as the WSJ writes, “investors are grappling with the president-elect’s highly visible but capricious social-media presence, which is upending well-worn Wall Street formulas for assessing the likelihood of certain developments and baking them into market prices.” Specifically, Trump’s tweets are challenging large firms to funnel his off-the-cuff remarks into trades in an age of increasing automation, “while forcing banks to revisit restrictions on social-media use. At the same time, the tweets are creating openings for smaller investors to make money on abrupt market moves.”

 The first problem, of course, is that with many Wall Street firms having banned Twitter, their traders are flying blind in an age when Trump’s tweets have become the biggest market moving event on any given day. For example, at Mizuho in New York, foreign-exchange trader Daniel Riveira said last year he began discussing with co-workers plans to get the Japanese financial firm to lift its longtime ban on Twitter after Mr. Trump’s threats to revise trade policies with Mexico prompted a sharp decline in the peso.

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