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If this is your first season betting on baseball, well, you picked an interesting one. Unlike football and basketball where the majority of bets are based on the point spreadbaseball is a moneyline sport. This means that bettors need to pick only who wins the game, not who covers.

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Spread betting hedge fund

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Despite their deserved reputation as speculators' tools, you can also use spread bets to reduce short-term risk.

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Spread betting hedge fund For example, if you were worried that inflation might impact the value of your share portfolio, you might decide to spread betting hedge fund a long position on mineable crypto currency stocks — an asset that typically has an inverse correlation with the dollar and can protect portfolios from inflation. One way to hedge the problem is to buy a FTSE spread bet when you make your share sale. The bet size is the amount you want to bet per unit of movement of the underlying market. So in the case of trading CFDs on shares quoted on the USA stock exchange, not only will you have to consider the rises and falls of that particular stock or share but you also have to keep in mind the changes in exchange rate between sterling and the dollar. Martinghoul Senior member 2,
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PACKERS VS SEAHAWKS BETTING PREDICTIONS AND TIPS

Place an up bet on the FTSE now. If the index rises over the next three months, your cash profit from the bet when you close it out, plus the dividend income you receive, should allow you to buy roughly as many shares as you could have done had the dividend been paid three months earlier.

You hold a large position in a company. You believe that the next set of results will be poor, and you'd like to take advantage in the short term. But long-term, you're happy to hold Company A shares, and you don't want the expense and hassle of selling up now, waiting, then buying all your shares back cheaper. After all, that would incur trading costs when you buy and sell, stamp duty at 0.

So instead, you could keep the shares and place a down bet on Company A using a spread bet. Assuming Company A then drops, you'll make a tax-free profit on the spread bet when you close it out at the lower price, and not have to bother churning your Company A shares.

The end of the tax year is approaching 5 April. You have yet to use up your annual capital gains tax CGT allowance. Under the old 'bed and breakfasting' rules, you could sell some FTSE shares through your broker just before the end of the tax year, then buy them back just after to trigger a gain that could be absorbed by the CGT allowance. But now you must complete your sale more than 30 days before the year-end. That's a long time to be on the sidelines hoping the market doesn't rise.

One way to hedge the problem is to buy a FTSE spread bet when you make your share sale. Then, if the index rises while you are waiting to repurchase your shares, you'll make a tax-free gain on the bet. That will help to fund the repurchase of your shares. DoorDash won't deliver for investors. Here's how to short it. Markets are starting to bet on inflation returning — you should too. Skip to Content Skip to Footer. Features Home Trading Spread betting.

In the two years following the article, the number of hedge funds soared from a handful to But their growth paled in comparison with the rise of mutual funds, private pools of capital that were not subject to the same limits on the number and wealth of their investors. Anyone could invest in mutual funds, and a lot did in the s and '80s, when many companies stopped paying retirees through pension plans and instead adopted k plans, which offered employees various options for investing in mutual funds.

Over the past decade, though, hedge funds have roared back. The prospect of earning hundreds of millions of dollars in fees each year lured top investment bankers from Wall Street to hedge funds in Greenwich, Conn. At the same time, financial windfalls from a booming economy left thousands of the wealthiest Americans looking for places to put their money. The bankers and the wealthy met initially in hedge-fund bliss. Individuals are no longer the only ones who sock away a million or two in the funds.

The best customers are often nonprofits, pension funds, and other institutions. And the reputation of hedge funds for earning high returns in down times has made them even more attractive since the bursting of the dot-com bubble and the economic troubles of recent years. The numbers tell the story. From about in , the number of hedge funds rose to nearly 6, in and is currently estimated at 8, or 9, They are not regulated.

To oversimplify slightly, a hedge fund is like a mutual fund that has been designed to avoid four federal laws that generally require investment funds and their advisers to identify fund officers and holdings and to submit to Securities and Exchange Commission oversight. The first law is the Investment Company Act of The act does not apply if the hedge fund has fewer than investors. In , Congress added a second exemption, waiving off the act if the investors are "qualified purchasers.

In reality, the maximum is , for reasons that will become clear in a moment. The thinking behind the exemptions is that a few friends, family members or wealthy investors who are financially sophisticated don't need the regulatory protections of the act, safeguards like restrictions on risky investments and limits on performance-based fees. Most funds choose the second exemption, because it allows them to tap a much larger group of investors.

Hedge funds can avoid the next two laws, the Securities Act of and the Securities Exchange Act of , by staying private and small. And under the act, the fund doesn't have to file regular disclosure statements like quarterly financials if it isn't listed on a stock exchange and if it has fewer than investors which explains the limit of qualified investors described above.

Again, the thinking is that a few well-to-do friends and family members don't need the protections of the securities laws. The fourth law, the Investment Advisers Act of , requires fund managers to tell the SEC how they're investing and to follow the commission's rules. But the act applies only if the manager has more than 14 clients and promotes himself to the public as an investment adviser. The trick here is in the definition of "client.

Rather than counting investors, in other words, the commission will, until a new rule goes into effect in early , treat the hedge fund itself as the client. Avoiding these four laws allows most hedge funds to operate in secrecy and, unburdened by investment restrictions or the cost of public disclosure, do almost anything they want. Their options include hedging, the practice that Alfred Winslow Jones pioneered, but many funds don't hedge. Some focus on major corporate deals like the Mylan-King transaction and make money by predicting a deal's effect on a company's stock.

Others use mathematical models to exploit blips in the prices of stocks, bonds, or other securities. Still others buy "distressed debt"-bonds and other obligations of companies in financial trouble. The funds pay a small fraction of the debt's face value, betting it will be worth more if the company's fortunes turn.

When funds hedge, they can do it in ways that Jones never dreamed of-playing the currency markets, for example. If a hedge fund owns an asset that will be worth less if Thailand's currency declines-stock in a Thai company that needs steel and other material from abroad, for example-it can enter a currency contract in the futures market to recoup the difference between the Thai baht's current value and its value in six months, assuming the baht ends up falling.

Hedge funds can also use the same contract to bet on the baht's future, even though they have no assets tied to the baht and no desire to hedge. The strategy is risky, though, since currencies are notoriously volatile. The risks rise when hedge funds are heavily leveraged and bet with lots of borrowed money.

That's when the danger of collapse-and damage to the economy-is highest. Unfortunately, managers have every incentive to take those risks and more. Most had celebrity CEOs paid primarily with stock options. The options offered eye-popping rewards if the company's stock went up but no penalty if it dropped.

The executives did whatever they could to pump up the stock, from gambling with company assets to cooking company books. To gain the Wall Street support that would keep their stock prices climbing, the superstar CEOs set targets for growth in their companies' earnings of 15 to 20 percent a year, which were generally far too high to sustain through above-board practices. A study by Dutch economist Kees Cools suggests that the higher the earnings targets the average "fraud" company in his study aimed for 18 percent, the nonfraud company 7 percent and the more an executive's pay consisted of stock options, the greater the chance a company would commit financial fraud.

A study by Jared Harris and Philip Bromley at the University of Minnesota shows that 20 percent of companies with CEOs who received 92 percent or more of their pay in options had cooked books within five years. The situation with hedge funds is remarkably similar. Although investment strategies vary widely, the method of paying fund managers is uniform. But the fees, together with lavish claims about performance, create the same kinds of incentives that led to corporate scandals.

There are many honest and successful hedge fund managers, but the combination of minimal oversight, performance-based compensation, and extravagant earnings expectations has encouraged lots of aggressive behavior and some outright fraud.

When the story broke last summer, it was treated as an unsettling, relatively isolated incident. But in the past five years, the SEC has brought 51 fraud cases against hedge fund managers. Many of the cases involved managers who duped investors with exaggerated earnings claims. In other cases, hedge fund managers siphoned money from investors by lying about the funds' profits.

West Palm Beach, Fla. Although these cases involved misbehavior blatant enough to detect, it's often hard to tell whether reported profits are real, because the sophisticated financial contracts that hedge funds invest in are so difficult to value. Currency contracts, for example, are often accounted for at current market value, even though their actual value cannot be known for some time. The complexity of financial contracts provides cover for lots of other sins, too, including tactics for evading regulations and rigging markets.

The letter of the law has not caught up with many of these sins, whose victims often are not investors in hedge funds but ordinary stockholders and others with a stake in fair markets and a healthy economy-people like the shareholders of Mylan Laboratories.

When a hedge fund like the Perry Corporation votes shares that it has already committed to sell, and when it votes them to advance its interests in a target company, it does not violate the law. But it acts unethically to the detriment of its fellow shareholders in the acquiring company. In fact, the worse the deal is for those shareholders, the more the hedge fund stands to gain. Carl Icahn and Mylan foiled Perry's scheme, and it is one of the only confirmed examples.

But vote buying by hedge funds is probably common. The practice first surfaced when the technology company Hewlett-Packard and the computer giant Compaq proposed to merge in Walter Hewlett, the son of one of the founders, waged a vigorous campaign against the merger, and many Wall Street experts criticized the deal as bad for HP. But HP shareholders narrowly approved the merger, and there is evidence that hedge funds tipped the scale through aggressive vote buying.

It turned out that Hewlett and the Wall Street critics were correct, and the principal proponent of the merger, former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina, stepped down last year as the merged company continued to flounder.

Forcing bad deals to go through can cause surprisingly widespread damage. Consider the effect on the millions of Americans who invest billions of dollars in mutual funds. Mutual funds typically hold a broad cross section of stocks, and the big ones own shares in most of the nation's largest corporations.

Those companies do thousands of deals each year, some good, others bad. The bad ones eventually damage a company's performance and lower the price of its stock. Vote rigging of the Perry sort ensures that more bad transactions will happen, which means that the overall value of mutual funds will drop.

Vote buying is hardly the only way that hedge funds use their financial muscle in the markets. Treasury notes-over half the amount readily available in the market. Other investors couldn't find enough notes to buy. That doesn't sound like a big problem, but it was ruinous for people who had purchased futures contracts. The contracts obligated them to sell notes to a buyer at a specified date in the future, presumably at a profit.

But they couldn't fulfill their obligations, particularly at prices they had forecast, in part because Citadel held so many notes and would make them available only at exorbitant prices. Whatever its intentions, Citadel appears to have profited handsomely.

Hoarding notes can be a method for manipulating the market, and it is reminiscent of the way robber barons like Jay Gould cornered markets in the 19th century, with one important difference. Gould played both sides, contracting to sell assets in the future and then hoarding them to drive up their value, a practice that would be illegal today. When a hedge fund like Citadel holds lots of notes, it acts entirely within the law, though its behavior can be disruptive to the markets. In bankruptcy situations, hedge funds routinely throw their weight around by combining vote buying and hoarding techniques.

To reorganize its business and get out of bankruptcy, a company needs the approval of each class of creditors: banks, bondholders, or suppliers that have loaned it money, for example, or firms that hold mortgages on its buildings. Approval comes when creditors holding two-thirds of a class of debt agree. If a hedge fund buys enough debt of a particular class, it can control the class's vote and, for example, pressure the company to quickly sell most of its assets rather than restructure and save its business.

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The episode which I'm about to narrate is dated but is still highly recommended reading - today nothing has changed except perhaps that Hedge Funds have got even more devious and ruthless. PERRY, a former investment banker at Goldman Sachs who runs a hedge fund called Perry Corporation, did something rarely seen in the shrouded world of hedge fund operators: He publicly disclosed an investment.

Perry purchased Curiously, Perry also arranged then to sell his Mylan stock a few weeks later-for the same price he paid for it. Between the purchase and the sale, Mylan shareholders were scheduled to vote on the King acquisition. This peculiar arrangement prompted another major Mylan shareholder, financier Carl Icahn, to claim that Perry was trying to "rig" the vote on the Mylan acquisition.

And, in fact, he was. Perry's stratagem was a clever form of vote buying. To understand what he was up to, it helps to know one more thing: Perry also owned seven million shares of King Pharmaceuticals, and he bought many of them after the Mylan deal was announced. And he could help it go through by voting his In other words, Perry owned the stock just to make sure that the deal got done, and in a close vote, 9. Like all sorts of elections, shareholder votes work best when each voter has a stake in the common enterprise.

Villagers choosing a mayor presumably care about the candidates' stances on taxes. Shareholders considering a merger care about the deal's effect on the price of their stock. When voters' interests are tied to the future of the village or the company, as the case may be, they tend to make better decisions.

But Perry didn't care what happened to Mylan. He didn't care if the price of its stock dropped, as often happens to the stock of an acquiring company, because he already had a deal to sell his shares at the price he paid for them. He also didn't care whether the King deal would weaken Mylan's business. Lousy deals burn stockholders and waste money, however, and hurt the economy and everyone who depends on it. Multiply Perry's behavior by the thousands of shareholder votes that occur every year at thousands of companies, and that's a lot of potentially lousy deals supported by major shareholders advancing narrow interests-and a lot of potential damage to the economy.

Perry's scheme fell apart after Icahn sued him, but it was only one of many tricks that hedge funds use to squeeze profits out of every corner of the market, with potentially ruinous consequences. For the most part, those tricks are entirely legal. The funds are unregulated, private pools of capital that can put vast sums of money almost anywhere they like, so they wield tremendous financial power.

And hedge fund success-if success means profits, no matter the source-can be as damaging to the economy as failure. Hedge funds have done fabulously well for their investors by manipulating shareholder votes, cornering the market for United States Treasury notes, controlling the debt of companies in bankruptcy, or, as in the recent mutual fund scandals, buying and selling stakes in mutual funds after the close of trading. But they have been cheating the rest of us, and it could get worse.

Hedge fund misbehavior looks ominously like the edge of the next wave of financial scandals. While many top executives of Enron and WorldCom-and the investment bankers and accountants who advised them-have been punished or soon will be, the scandals they perpetrated never prompted a thorough rethinking of how American markets should work, and how best to preserve the markets' integrity.

After 25 years of deregulation in financial, airline, and other industries, a high-velocity, service-oriented economy has given the wealthiest Americans more money than ever. They are pouring it into hedge funds, whose whiz-kid managers are guided by an overriding principle: Multiply the money, any way you can. As a staff writer at Fortune magazine, he wrote a story, "Fashions in Forecasting," that inspired him to try the stock market himself.

First, they borrowed additional funds so that they could invest far more than they had. Known as leveraging, it's the same technique used to finance the takeover of companies and is not all that different from borrowing money to buy a house.

The true innovation was the second part of Jones's strategy. He picked not only stocks he expected to increase in value, but stocks he expected to decline. He sold the expected losers "short," meaning he agreed to sell them on a future date at the current market price. So if the stock dropped, he could buy it at the lower future price, sell it to the buyer at the current price as agreed, and profit from the difference.

His contract to sell the stock short meant that he had to buy at the future price even if he turned out to be wrong and the stock rose. But by betting that some stocks would rise and others fall, Jones "hedged" his position-hence the term "hedge fund"-reducing the effect that a sudden change in the general stock market would have on his investments.

He made a lot of money being right more often than being wrong. A Fortune article, "The Jones Nobody Keeps Up With," reported Jones's spectacular returns percent over the previous five years, percent over the previous and brought hedge funds to the attention of American investors. In the two years following the article, the number of hedge funds soared from a handful to But their growth paled in comparison with the rise of mutual funds, private pools of capital that were not subject to the same limits on the number and wealth of their investors.

Anyone could invest in mutual funds, and a lot did in the s and '80s, when many companies stopped paying retirees through pension plans and instead adopted k plans, which offered employees various options for investing in mutual funds. Over the past decade, though, hedge funds have roared back.

The prospect of earning hundreds of millions of dollars in fees each year lured top investment bankers from Wall Street to hedge funds in Greenwich, Conn. At the same time, financial windfalls from a booming economy left thousands of the wealthiest Americans looking for places to put their money. The bankers and the wealthy met initially in hedge-fund bliss. Individuals are no longer the only ones who sock away a million or two in the funds.

The best customers are often nonprofits, pension funds, and other institutions. And the reputation of hedge funds for earning high returns in down times has made them even more attractive since the bursting of the dot-com bubble and the economic troubles of recent years.

The numbers tell the story. From about in , the number of hedge funds rose to nearly 6, in and is currently estimated at 8, or 9, They are not regulated. To oversimplify slightly, a hedge fund is like a mutual fund that has been designed to avoid four federal laws that generally require investment funds and their advisers to identify fund officers and holdings and to submit to Securities and Exchange Commission oversight.

The first law is the Investment Company Act of The act does not apply if the hedge fund has fewer than investors. In , Congress added a second exemption, waiving off the act if the investors are "qualified purchasers. In reality, the maximum is , for reasons that will become clear in a moment.

The thinking behind the exemptions is that a few friends, family members or wealthy investors who are financially sophisticated don't need the regulatory protections of the act, safeguards like restrictions on risky investments and limits on performance-based fees.

Most funds choose the second exemption, because it allows them to tap a much larger group of investors. Hedge funds can avoid the next two laws, the Securities Act of and the Securities Exchange Act of , by staying private and small.

And under the act, the fund doesn't have to file regular disclosure statements like quarterly financials if it isn't listed on a stock exchange and if it has fewer than investors which explains the limit of qualified investors described above. Again, the thinking is that a few well-to-do friends and family members don't need the protections of the securities laws.

The fourth law, the Investment Advisers Act of , requires fund managers to tell the SEC how they're investing and to follow the commission's rules. But the act applies only if the manager has more than 14 clients and promotes himself to the public as an investment adviser. The trick here is in the definition of "client. Rather than counting investors, in other words, the commission will, until a new rule goes into effect in early , treat the hedge fund itself as the client.

Avoiding these four laws allows most hedge funds to operate in secrecy and, unburdened by investment restrictions or the cost of public disclosure, do almost anything they want. Their options include hedging, the practice that Alfred Winslow Jones pioneered, but many funds don't hedge.

Some focus on major corporate deals like the Mylan-King transaction and make money by predicting a deal's effect on a company's stock. Others use mathematical models to exploit blips in the prices of stocks, bonds, or other securities. Still others buy "distressed debt"-bonds and other obligations of companies in financial trouble.

The funds pay a small fraction of the debt's face value, betting it will be worth more if the company's fortunes turn. When funds hedge, they can do it in ways that Jones never dreamed of-playing the currency markets, for example. If a hedge fund owns an asset that will be worth less if Thailand's currency declines-stock in a Thai company that needs steel and other material from abroad, for example-it can enter a currency contract in the futures market to recoup the difference between the Thai baht's current value and its value in six months, assuming the baht ends up falling.

Hedge funds can also use the same contract to bet on the baht's future, even though they have no assets tied to the baht and no desire to hedge. The strategy is risky, though, since currencies are notoriously volatile. The risks rise when hedge funds are heavily leveraged and bet with lots of borrowed money.

That's when the danger of collapse-and damage to the economy-is highest. Unfortunately, managers have every incentive to take those risks and more. Most had celebrity CEOs paid primarily with stock options. The options offered eye-popping rewards if the company's stock went up but no penalty if it dropped.

The executives did whatever they could to pump up the stock, from gambling with company assets to cooking company books. To gain the Wall Street support that would keep their stock prices climbing, the superstar CEOs set targets for growth in their companies' earnings of 15 to 20 percent a year, which were generally far too high to sustain through above-board practices. A study by Dutch economist Kees Cools suggests that the higher the earnings targets the average "fraud" company in his study aimed for 18 percent, the nonfraud company 7 percent and the more an executive's pay consisted of stock options, the greater the chance a company would commit financial fraud.

A study by Jared Harris and Philip Bromley at the University of Minnesota shows that 20 percent of companies with CEOs who received 92 percent or more of their pay in options had cooked books within five years. The situation with hedge funds is remarkably similar. You can hedge because financial spread betting allows you the ability to bet on whether a financial instrument will move up or down in value; the fact that spread bets are leveraged means that investors can protect their shares portfolio with a financial outlay that is just a fraction of the value of their shareholding.

Since spread betting allows the option to profit from falling market prices, it offers a perfect protection for anticipated losses portfolio values. Hedging essentially means protecting or trying to minimise any risk that may affect your existing investment portfolio. Hedging in this respect involves using spread betting as part of a short-term strategy as a means to protect your shares portfolio when faced with market turmoil.

Some speculators tend to hedge when important economic news is due like a company issuing a trading update or big economic news. In this respect, financial spread betting allows you to setup a quick and effective hedge to protect your investment portfolio without having to sell and exit your long term positions. Having said that using spread bets as a hedging mechanism is not ideal due to the tax regime. This is because profits from spread betting are a wager for tax purposes which effectively means that while gains are not taxable, losses are likewise not allowable and thus cannot be offset against profits elsewhere.

Hedging involves taking an opposite trade that will offset any losses in the actual investment. Spread betting provides traders and investors alike with an excellent trading tool capable of protecting investments against unfavorable movements in share prices. While some market participants are day traders in spread bets, others are investors who use them in conjunction with other investments as a way to mitigate risk or limit any possible harsh consequences of stock market volatility.

Spread bets allows traders and investors to lock stock value at the present price by placing a down bet in the same stocks in their portfolios, which is especially useful if a market or share is about to fall in value. For example, such investors will go short in the market to benefit from falling markets to hedge against their existing shareholdings. Additionally, spreadbets being margined transactions means that you are able to leverage short positions.

So for a fraction of the underlying market exposure, you can undertake a hedging strategy. Because spreadbets are traded on margin, you only need a fraction of the total notional value of the trade in your trading account to open the trade. In this case you could take out a short position this is selling a share with the expectation that its value will decline if you are uncertain of how a stock will do in the future, but you want to keep hold of the underlying stock.

If they have, for example, a basket of FTSE stocks or securities, financial spread betting can prove to be very cost-effective mechanism of hedging that portfolio because there are no commission charges and also very low setup fees. You think that they might fall back to about p per share but wish to avoid selling them now to avoid creating a capital gains tax liability so you decide to take out a spreadbet.

For instance, back in when the credit crunch was heavy underway, anyone who owned shares in a bank institution or home building company could have sold the spread-betting quote. And while their underlying share value was going down, their spread betting would have offset the losses incurred on their shares positions. The temptation is to sell after such a jump and then buy back, but one could use a an opposing spread bet to lock in the financial gain more cost-effectively.

Though here you have to take into account the opportunity cost of the margin funds as you have to keep this at the spread betting company rather than investing it. This type of hedge is particularly effective if you have a shares portfolio which is overweight on a particular sector as shorting a key stock in that sector will help reduce the downside risk.

Spreadbets can also be used to hedge against rising household costs, such as fuel bills, food prices and rising mortgage repayments. That way, if interest rates rise more than expected, you will make money that you can use to offset higher mortgage repayments. If the exchange rate is, at say, 1. You can take a short trade for the equivalent value of your future property purchase to protect yourself against such a scenario.

Note that hedging is designed to eliminate market exposure and is not a means to making an overall gain — it will simply ensure that you will always roughly breakeven. Hence, hedging your portfolio does somewhat reduce the prospect for making additional gains but in certain circumstances it makes practical sense to cover your positions.

Sometimes the best hedge is to let go of a losing position. It is worth noting that hedging costs commissions in terms of the bid-offer spread and increasing costs in trading only makes it harder to come ahead. Remember, the key at the end of the day is to ensure that your winning profitable trades outnumber your losing ones, so keeping your spread betting losses to a minimum in this way can make all the difference to your bottom line. This would offer a degree of protection against a downswing in the stock market in so far as you would gain on this spread trade offsetting the lower stock prices of your shares portfolio.

Thus, long term share investors who are concerned that the wider market is about to experience a steep fall, with consequent downside pressure on their shareholdings, could sell short an index spread bet to offset some of the risk. This is a very simple and effective way to protect the value of a diversified shares portfolio without having to liquidate the individual shareholdings. You are concerned that with the sovereign crisis engulfing Europe, your ETF portfolio might suffer a steep fall in the next few months but you prefer not to sell today for tax reasons.

However, your short spread bet is in profit and effectively cancels the loss on your tracker fund. Here you would in effect be betting a certain amount per point that the index will go lower. Of course if an investor has a shares portfolio that is more diversified than normal, then it may be feasible to make use of a beta-adjusted hedge.

Beware that the FTSE is dominated by mining and oil companies so if your shares portfolio is heavily invested in other shares, the effectiveness of such a hedge will be limited. At the time of writing June I think that one of the best hedges against long positions at the moment is the French CAC To my mind its a better short than Dow or FTSE given the the French seem intent on burying their heads in the sand and following in the path of Greece.

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What Do Hedge Funds Think of Technical Analysis?

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