Do Short Selling Hedge Funds Hunt in Packs?

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A few months ago, the hedge funds held their yearly convention in Las Vegas. Most of the reports I read told of massive negativity from the fund managers. Since then corporate earnings are telling a different tale.

For example Intel INTC, reported their best quarter ever and gave positive future earnings growth. The stock is now 5% cheaper than it was before the results? This is not normal trading and goes against all the basic rudiments of investing. Clearly, we are not on a level playing field right now where stocks trade on their fundamentals.

We all know that housing is still in a slump and the job growth is not picking up fast enough. However, 90% of people are in work in the USA and seemingly they are spending money on consumer goods. The rest of the world economies appear to be in good health, which is boosting company profits.

Last Monday, the 26th of July, 2010, CNBC’s program; Squawk Box, had economist Dr. Roubini on the early segment for one hour. He is known as the master of doom and gloom who has a crystal ball that can only see the economic destruction of the USA system. Which begs the question … Why would the producers of the show put one of the most negative experts on, after the weekend, before the markets open?

The stock market was set to open lower, however, unfortunately for the negative brigade, FedEx; (FDX) came out with a statement before the bell that profits are improving and the future is looking brighter than expected. FedEx are a far fairer barometer for the commercial side of the economy than pessimistic expert options, who are trying to predict the future by the system of their personal mind-set and education.

So, it seems we have a tug of war with the negative media and short selling hedge funds verses mostly encouraging company earnings that are getting better. Since stocks depend on earnings not negative propaganda, there needs to be a constant barrage of negative experts to keep the market from finding is own true level based on sound fundamentals.

The question, for which I do not have any answers, is; do short selling hedge funds act independently of each other or do they hunt in packs? If they do hunt in packs, who are their leaders and who do they have on their side in the media? If they don’t hunt in packs, why is the stock market acting so lethargically to healthy earnings and positive future forecasts?

On Friday, the 30 of July, 2010 CNBC ended the week with this article on their website, it started thus;

In the August edition of the ‘The Gloom, Boom & Doom Report’ Marc Faber questions whether the Dow could hit 1,000 as predicted by Robert Prechter, based on his interpretation of Elliot Waves, Fibonacci numbers and socioeconomic trends.

I will not go into the negative propaganda other than to relay the last paragraph;

And how do you trade the Dow at 1,000?

One suggestion from Faber is buying a self-sustainable farm in the middle of nowhere surrounded by high voltage fences and barbed wire and equipped with booby traps and an arsenal of machine guns, hand grenades and armed vehicles guarded by vicious Dobermans.

One may well ask; is this the dream the inventors of the television had, or did they believe they were inventing a means of communication that could help people understand the true nature of things?

Sadly, I sense media reporting is going to get more bizarre and disruptive before there is any change for the better.

Michael Levy is a professional optimist and speaker. He is an international radio host and the author of nine inspirational books.