Tagged: VIX expirations

Clouds and Wind Without Rain

We’re in glorious Cincinnati where the land is rushing headlong into spring. Even a photo snapped in haste northward at night from Covington at the John Roebling Bridge seems cast in ethereal light.

Speaking of rushing headlong, if you’re here in the heartland, join us at the noon NIRI Tri-State chapter meeting today. We’ll talk about what’s got markets hasting.

There’s a saying from the bible: “Like clouds and wind without rain is a man who boasts of a gift he does not give.”

It made me think of volume. Enough of you have written asking about what may underlie declines in market volume that it deserves a community answer. We hope ours will do.

In 1980, Wilshire Associates was tracking about 3,500 publicly traded companies in its index that would become the Wilshire 5000, the category-leading total-market index. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed that year at 963. Average daily trading volume was 45 million shares on the NYSE.

By 1990, the Wilshire 5000 had over 5,000 companies as IPOs outpaced consolidation. Average daily volume across the NYSE, Nasdaq and American Stock Exchange was 302 million shares, and the Dow Jones Index closed at 2,633.

In 2000, total companies had slipped from the 1998 zenith of 7,460. But daily volume had mushroomed to 2.8 billion shares. The Dow concluded Y2K at 10,786.

Volume built to helium-laughter level of about 7 billion shares daily in 2009. But in 2012 so far, markets are averaging 3.6 billion shares daily. The Dow is up. But the number of public companies is down. Way down. Care to guess how many make up the Wilshire 5000 in 2012? (more…)

I am the doofus on camera that I feared I was.

Fortunately, Lou Cordone, head of Thomson Advisory Services is not a doofus, so we balanced out.

We said last week we’d have big news about the Issuer Data Initiative? Thomson Reuters heard about the Initiative, examined its merits, and decided to lend a hand. They invited me to film a segment on their “Smart Topics” program for Thomson’s surveillance clients.

Thomson is a neutral party. But we cannot thank them enough – you too, because this effort is for public companies – for their kindness and generosity. See it from the IDI landing page, or click here.

More huge thanks are due. The office of the general counsel for a client, a major technology company, lent an editorial eye to the draft letter for Congress and the SEC. Thousands of dollars of legal work, pro bono. The petition is that much stronger. And we’re speaking again with the SEC the week of May 9 about the status of the Initiative. (more…)