Financial singularity and what it means for Stock Markets

Financial singularity and what it means for Stock Markets

This refers to the day machines are smarter than humans. Some experts put that date at 2029; we, however, think it could occur much faster. Machines are already dominating the trading world, and they are being made to think like their masters; this means that mass psychology will still be a force to reckon with; only in the years to come, the mass mindset will represent machines also instead of only humans. The British pound flash crash that occurred on the 7th of October was triggered by machines (computers). As machines move into the game the action will be more volatile as they can run 100 times faster than humans so it will create swings and reversals that are spectacular in nature; we are not quite there yet but expect volatility to continue rising.

The other thing to keep in mind is that nature favours the strongest and so if humans want to remain in this ecosystem they will have to adapt. This means enhancements, and so the people of the future (which is not too far in the making) will not look like today; they will be part human and part machine. The word cyborg comes to mind; we can expect memory enhancements, vision enhancements, body part enhancements for strength, etc., etc.  Education in most cases today is a waste of time, but once these new enhancement technologies come out, education as we know it will become obsolete. A simple memory upgrade and you will know everything there is to know on any given subject.  Moore’s law states that the number of transistors on a chip will double ever year and this has held true; at this speed, in about 60 years or so one computer could be smarter than the entire human race. Thus an upgrade is inevitable.

One of the world’s leading futurologists and artificial intelligence (AI) developers, 66-year-old Kurzweil has previous form in making accurate predictions about the way technology is heading. In 1990 he said a computer would be capable of beating a chess champion by 1998 – a feat managed by IBM’s Deep Blue, against Garry Kasparov, in 1997.

When the internet was still a tiny network used by a small collection of academics, Kurzweil anticipated it would soon make it possible to link up the whole world. Now, Kurzweil says than within 15 years robots will have overtaken us, having fulfilled the so-called Turing test where computers can exhibit intelligent behaviour equal to that of a human. Full Story

Over 80% of all trades are conducted via machines that are programmed by mentally deficient humans; hence the computers, for now, are simply, magnifying the emotions of euphoria and fear. If we add in Dark Pools, then one could argue that machines conduct 90% of all trades.  While many might view this as a shocking development, we see it as a Godsend; it is like putting a thousand idiots on steroids and asking them to build a spaceship.

The proportion of US trading activity represented by buy and sell orders from mutual funds, hedge funds, pensions and brokerages, referred to as “real money” or institutional investors, accounted for just 16 percent of total market volume in the form of buying, and 13 per cent via selling in the final quarter of last year, according to analysis by Morgan Stanley’s Quantitative and Derivative Strategies group. Full story

We don’t view this as a shocking development as we base our investment decisions on Mass Psychology and Technical Analysis and over the past 16 years we have successfully navigated our subscribers through market tops and bottoms.  However, financial singularity is going to significantly affect the returns of the small player and  it will make it very difficult for players who focus on fundamentals or technical analysis only to lock in decent gains.

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