JPMorgan Creates ‘Volfefe’ Index to Track Trump Tweet Impact

Discussion in 'Wall St. News' started by ETJ, Sep 10, 2019.

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  1. ETJ


    Bloomberg’s Tracy Alloway explains what the ’Volfefe Index’ created by JPMorgan analysts is.




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    Two of the largest Wall Street banks are trying to measure the market impact of Donald Trump’s tweets.

    Analysts at JPMorgan Chase & Co. have created an index to quantify what they say are the growing effects on U.S. bond yields. Citigroup Inc.’s foreign exchange team, meanwhile, report that these micro-blogging missives are also becoming “increasingly relevant” to foreign-exchange moves.

    JPMorgan’s “Volfefe Index,” named after Trump’s mysterious covfefe tweet from May 2017, suggests that the president’s electronic musings are having a statistically significant impact on Treasury yields. The number of market-moving Trump tweets has ballooned in the past month, with those including words such as “China,” “billion,” “products,” “Democrats” and “great” most likely to affect prices, the analysts found.

    Bloomberg Tracker: Every Time Trump Tweets About the Stock Market

    “Trade and monetary policy have become an increasing focus for the executive branch, and everything from casual sentiments to seemingly formal policy intentions have been disseminated, globally and instantaneously, via this carefully scrutinized social media platform,” JPMorgan analysts led by Josh Younger and Munier Salem wrote. “In response, a broad swath of assets from single-name stocks to macro products have found their price dynamics increasingly beholden to a handful of tweets from the commander in chief.”

    Read more: Trump Adds an Element of Randomness to Markets: John Authers

    About 10% of the president’s tweets since his November 2016 election pertain to subjects of importance to U.S. markets, according to Citigroup quantitative foreign-exchange strategist Sukrita Chatterji. She added that in recent weeks they’ve become more centered on the dollar and the Federal Reserve.

    The president’s tweets have included a direct Fed reference 20 times over the past month. That doesn’t include his Aug. 23 question of whether Chairman Jerome Powell was a bigger enemy than Chinese President Xi Jinping.

    JPMorgan’s Volfefe Index, built from a rolling one-month sum of inferred probability that each tweet is market moving

    JPMorgan’s analysis looked at Treasury yields in the five minutes after a Trump tweet, and the index shows the rolling one-month probability that each missive is market-moving.

    They found that the Volfefe Index can account for a “measurable fraction” of moves in implied volatility, seen in interest rate derivatives known as swaptions. That’s particularly apparent at the shorter end of the curve, with two- and five-year rates more impacted than 10-year securities.

    Meanwhile, Citi’s work shows that the president’s tweets are generally followed by a stretch of higher volatility across global currency markets. And there’s little sign traders are growing numb to these messages.

    “We find little evidence that the market achieves ‘fatigue’ on Trump tweeting,” Chatterji wrote. “If anything, the opposite has proven true with many of the largest market moves on Trump tweets having occurred recently.”

    The ramifications of @realDonaldTrump’s market takes aren’t so definitive to be of use in the design of systemic strategies, Citi cautions. To the extent that there is a signal, it’s associated with U.S. dollar weakness relative to the Japanese yen and the euro when trade is the subject matter.

    “With heavier tweeting on USD and the Fed likely to feature moving forward and these tweets seeing a bit larger and more consistent market moves, it would not be surprising to us if the market showed more, not less sensitivity to tweets over time,” the strategist concludes.

    JPMorgan and Citigroup aren’t alone in attempting to calculate the impact of the president’s Twitter activity on markets. Analysts at Bank of America Merrill Lynch published a note last week concluding that days during which Trump tweets relatively frequently tend to see negative stock returns of 9 basis points on average. Days with fewer presidential tweets tend to see positive returns of 5 basis points on average.

    The S&P 500 is up more than 35% since Trump won the 2016 election.
  2. Magna

    Magna Administrator

    A thread was started on this same subject yesterday.
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