ART CASHIN: We May Have Just Witnessed The Presence Of Artificial Intelligence In The Stock Market
3 1 2012
Wednesday morning, there was a violent sell-off in stocks that seemed to start exactly at 10:00 AM. This had some New York Stock Exchange floor traders scratching their heads.
Art Cashin, UBS Financial Services’ director of floor operations, caught some of the trader chatter and reported it in this morning’s Cashin’s Comments.
It seems that the supernatural speed of the sell-off had traders thinking two words: artificial intelligence.
Here’s an excerpt from this morning’s Comments:
Algo My Way By Myself Or Open The Pod Doors, HAL – As noted, the instantaneous nature of the selloff around 10:00 raised lots of questions. First of all, Mr. B does not usually mention QE3. He might vaguely allude to further easing and other such code phrases. Further, if it was a quick review of the prepared remarks by thousands of traders, how could the reaction be so instantaneous and uniform?
Those questions prompted an intriguing hypothesis that began circulating in early afternoon. The hypothesis postulated that the speech had been instantly parsed by a computer using artificial intelligence.