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Spot The Odd Vol Out

Despite the well-managed collapse of Equity, FX, and Rates volatility in February, the Oil complex is exhibiting Lehman-Depression-like levels of implied vol still as central planners seem unable (or unwilling) to manipulate the energy complex (rock of inflation and hard place of 'consumer tax cut'?). As WSJ reports, this volatility is roiling market makers, luring fast-money traders (and algos) and discouraging long-term investors from hedging/positioning. As one asset manager noted, "we like volatile two-way markets... but this is too high for us."

 

 

Perhaps, just perhaps, given the potential difficulty/disagreement of central banks agreeing on how best to manipulate oil prices (and thus lower vol), it is the only (along with The Baltic Dry Index) indicator of the imbalance between excess mal-investment-driven supply and Greenspan's "Depression-like global demand."