Marks pointed out some worries back in mid-2017. Weird features of the market: the Vision fund; the run up in Apple, Netflix, Google, Amazon, Facebook stocks; the run up in the stock market generally; automated investing via passive index funds; fast growth in debt for emerging markets, students, and corporate leverage; the runup of crypto assets like Bitcoin; huge private equity funds; and the historically low VIX level which suggested that investors were snoozing (expecting no volatility at all in the year ahead).
This was enough to convince me back then that there would be a come-down soon, and I picked September 2018, 12 months after I processed this memo, as the date.
Then I ordered some Grave Dancer sweatshirts.
One more thing: today, two large private equity groups used the word “macro”, a word I haven’t heard from any investor group in 6 months even after traveling China, India, Middle East, Germany, UK, California, and New York for meetings with the world’s largest pools of capital.
They both signaled they are frozen for now — time to dance.