Investment Analysis of S&P 500, VIX and macro
Crypto/Web 3.0 Coverage
Politics, Geo-economics, Fiscal & Monetary Policy
Daily Reports, Data & Analytics
Dashboards & Charts
Factor Discovery Engine
Economic & Monetary Theory



Stephen Aniston is an investor focused on the volatility and cryptocurrency markets. His investment analysis of the S&P 500 and VIX futures markets has been featured in mainstream media like the Financial Times, Reuters and Wall Street Journal. He was also a contributor to and Seeking Alpha. Prior to becoming an investor, Stephen was a technologist on Wall Street. He was Technical Architect of the Merchant Banking Division at Goldman Sachs and an Information Technology VP at Royal Bank of Scotland. His domain expertise is in alternative investments - hedge funds and private equity. He is an experienced software programmer using the Microsoft development stack, has an Industrial Engineering degree from Stanford University and was a national math olympian in high school. offers commentary on volatility, macro and current events and discretionary crypto/Web 3.0 strategy. The website was started in 2013 as a hobby project to track VIX statistics and after getting high traffic in 2015, Stephen quit his job on Wall Street to become a full-time financial analystics provider and investor. Over the years more than 400 investors have subscribed to read our newsletters and use our analytics. Our subscribers are wealthy businessmen, financial advisors, hedge fund traders and Wall Street managing directors.

Stephen Aniston

VIX & Volatility

We provide investment analysis for the SPX and VIX futures market and related exchange traded products (ETPs) like SPY and SVXY. VIX ETPs are composed of VIX futures which in turn are based on the CBOE S&P 500 Volatility Index (VIX) or otherwise widely known as the "fear index". The VIX futures market is a growing derivative market with over $4 billion in average daily trading volume in 2016. On this website, you can will be provided with the tools and knowledge to trade popular VIX ETPs like SVXY for profit. Long volatility strategies are used for protection against market turmoil while short volatility strategies are used as "yield enhancers".

A short volatility strategy is similar to being leveraged long the stock market while a long volatility strategy is similar to being leveraged short the stock market. The VIX has a built in leverage: historically, the VIX moves +4% for every -1% move in the SPX. Thus a short volatility strategy enables to you to achieve higher than market returns. In addition to the leverage, one of the most attractive features of a short volatility strategy is its ability to generate returns when the market is rangebound, thus making it an excellent "catchup" trade. However, periods of market beating performance come with a substantial cost. When adverse market conditions strike, losses in short volatility strategy can be catastrophic while gains in a long volatility strategy add up to big numbers. Moves of +/-40% in a month can happen once or even a few times a year. Buy and hold is not an option for any volatility strategy or any VIX ETF. Any exposure to this asset class must be actively managed and this is where we can help you.

Our subscribers get daily email newsletters with analysis of the S&P 500 index (SPX), VIX, VIX futures & important sector ETFs. You will be well informed about what moves the market. You will have access to live and historical VIX and VIX futures data, real-time dashboards, daily reports and many proprietary VIX analytics that help you succeed as a trader. We also help you with trading algos and factor labs (continuous factor backtests) and discretionary investment strategies. Our systematic algos provide well-timed entry and exit points into the most popular volatility ETPs like SVXY. We track over 20 volatility signals in the following categories:

  • Volatility Term Structure
  • Volatility Risk Premium
  • Volatility Aggregates
  • Volatility Momentum
  • Volatility Speed
  • Volatility Exposure

Crypto/Web 3.0 Digital Tokens

We bought our first Bitcoin after the Cyprus crisis in 2013. Our research in early 2014 "Why You Should Invest in Bitcoin and How" correctly predicted that Bitcoin would be around $50,000 in 2021 if its primary monetary use became "Store of Value" (Digital Gold). A decade later alternative crypto-currencies have evolved into digital tokens that give you ownership of the future of computing (Web 3.0). Digital tokens are a growth investment that should be a mandatory part of any diversified macro or technology portfolio. Due to the inherent capacity constraints of distributed computing, we don't think there will be a single blockchain winner. Instead, there will be multiple winners but only a few blockchains will capture majority of the value from blockchain activities due to agglomeration and network effects. This is similar to how Apple, Dell and Microsoft has captured majority of the value from personal computing (Web 1.0) while Microsoft, Amazon, google and Facebook from cloud computing (Web 2.0). Our investment objective is to find which 5 or 6 blockchains will be the long-term Web 3.0 winners. We have identified 8 of the Top 20 coins by market cap over the past 5 years. Our success stems from good understanding of the software development lifecycle after spending a decade running Wall Street technology teams. We can identify which blockchain teams can deliver on their vision and whether they pursue the correct technology.

Web 3.0 is the next step in the evolution of the internet. The internet (Web 1.0) started out as an explosion of creativity in the 90s when many small companies (dot coms) invented new services to be delivered over the internet. In the 2000s, centralized computing capacity grew dramatically and computing tasks started to get outsourced to the cloud (Web 2.0) due to a reduction in maintenance costs, increase in uptime, faster processing times and cheaper pricing. Web 3 builds on top of Web 2 by removing the large Big Tech computing rentiers and democratizing network value capture. In Web 3, creators own their digital data and digital infrastructure on the blockchain and as a result can collect rental income from their own activity and network value contribution. Ultimately value will flow to those who create it and technology network rents should be in the 10-20% range instead of the 100% currently captured by Big Tech. The cloud business model is ripe for disruption and distributed computing networks will deliver that disruption.

Technology Evolution

Politics + Policy = Volatility

While our service provides technical analytics that help you swing trade VIX and SPX ETFs, our investment analysis focuses not only on technicals, but also on fundamentals like corporate earnings and valuation multiples. Earnings are only 5-10% of stock prices, the other 90-95% are multiples which are an estimate of how long corporations can sustain the earnings growth. That estimate in turn is heavily dependent on government policy which is determined by domestic politics and international geopolitics. Government policy can be broken down into monetary policy and fiscal policy and that combination determines the primary direction of stock markets and their volatility regimes.

Here is a quick summary of our methodology:
  1. Determine US Political Outlook
  2. Determine US Fiscal Policy expectations based on Political Outlook
  3. Determine Monetary Policy expectations in US, Europe, Japan, China
  4. Determine impact of Monetary Policy and Fiscal Policy on Economic Activity (GDP Growth) and Inflation expectations
  5. Translate Economic Activity and Inflation expectations into Corporate Earnings expectations
  6. Determine SPX Price Target by assigning historically appropriate Market Multiple to Corporate Earnings Growth expectations
  7. Determine SPX Volatility Outlook

Our investment analysis focuses heavily on the US President and Congress, their policy proposals and the chances their proposals have to become actual legislation. We discount and score the economic impact of policy proposals and analyze how they might affect certain sectors and broad markets. Our statistical analysis often diverges from information that is dissemminated in the mainstream media. We correctly predicted the Trump win in 2016 and Biden win in 2020.

WARNING: Many people get upset when our handicapping diverges from their own political views. We managed to upset a lot of Democrats in 2016 with our Trump call and many Republicans in 2020 with our Biden call. Our intent is not to upset people but to analyze political reality as we see it and determine how that affects markets. Our forecast are by no means perfect, but uncomfortable political analysis is a big part of our investment process. If you will get upset about political analysis in an investment newsletter, our services are not for you.

Stock Price Components Political Analysis

Daily Reports

Volatility Analytics, Streaks, ETF Exposure

Market Technicals, Correlations & Sharpe Ratios

Daily, Monthly, Annual Seasonals

ETF Standings, Rankings & Ratios

See example »

Email Newsletters

Investment Analysis of SPX, VIX and crypto

Fiscal and Monetary Policy Analysis

Political and Geopolitical Newsletters

Market Updates and Outlook

See example »

Data & Analytics

SPX, VIX and crypto data & analytics

Term Structure, Volatility Risk Premium

Momentum, Speed, Exposure, Aggregates

20+ Swing trading Indicators

See example »

Website Reviews


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