Get a Cue – How to Read Corporate Body Language in a Bear Market

IBKR’s senior market analyst Steven Levine speaks with Christine Short, Wall Street Horizon’s vice president of research, about how to read certain corporate body language cues – nonverbal signals that companies can communicate to the marketplace about their financial well-being – whether intentional or not. Among other topics, they explore how these cues can affect risk sentiment, and ultimately influence the performance of stocks.

Summary – Traders’ Insight Radio Ep. 29

The following is a summary of a live audio recording and may contain errors in spelling or grammar.  Although IBKR has edited for clarity no material changes have been made.

Note: Any performance figures mentioned in this podcast are as of the date of recording (July 18, 2022).

Steven Levine

Hello, and welcome to IBKR Traders’ Insight Radio podcast. I’m Steven Levine, senior market analyst at Interactive Brokers, and your host for today’s program, where we’ll be talking with Christine Short, Wall Street Horizon’s vice president of research, about the current bear market we’ve been witnessing, and how certain corporate body language can affect risk sentiment, and ultimately have an influence over the performance of stocks.

Welcome, Christine! Great to have you here with us.

Christine Short

Thank you so much for having me, excited to chat.

Steven Levine

Yeah, me too, me too. You really gave us a terrific presentation on our IBKR Webinars platform back in August, I think last year, about corporate body language. It involves certain event data you might find on a financial calendar … like earnings or dividend announcements, investor conferences … things like that … and how investors can use activity that involves these scheduled dates to help gain insights into the overall financial health of a company. This is what I understand.

Now, we’ve been experiencing quite a downturn to date this year, right? I mean, the S&P is down around 20%, Nasdaq’s plunged more than 27%, and some sectors in the S&P, like consumer discretionary, for example, is down over 30%, and the Retail Select Industry Index has shed about 34%. I mean, I can go on, and we’ll circle back to these later in our discussion, but for now, I’d really like to get a handle on how corporate body language, or these signals coming from companies that you track … how does that work exactly in terms of making some decisions about a company’s or sector’s financial health? What are your insights there?

Christine Short

Yeah, so corporate body language is, as you’ve mentioned … this is a term we’ve kind of coined that represents what we call ‘the nonverbal cues’ the company gives the marketplace about their financial well-being, and they can be either intentional or unintentional. A lot of times companies don’t even realize they’re doing it. They are typically seen, as you mentioned, when a company changes a date … they revise something – either an earnings date, or they change the content of an event that they’re involved in.

So, for example, we mainly track earnings dates. We find that data to be most impactful, and what we’re looking at is – are companies reporting at the same time that they have historically, or are they moving an earnings date up? Are they pushing it back? And as we’ll get to later in the podcast, there’s some academic research that says you should be paying attention to those moves. And beyond that, when you’re looking at investor conferences and events, are they attending events? Are they attending the same events as their peers? Do they have a speaker? Is it someone in the C-Suite? Is it someone a little lower down the, you know, the ranks there? Do they change their speaker last minute?

So, it’s all these very small, nuanced changes, and we’re not saying it always necessarily means something, but the more information you have, the better, and you use it within your mosaic, we like to say, of financial data and other bespoke datasets.

But it’s understanding that these changes are happening in… at least being aware of them, so that you can make a sort of informed decision whether you’re, you know, trading, investing in these companies, and we’ll get into some of the … like I said, academic research, later on. But when we’re talking about earnings dates, the idea is that if a company is reporting later than usual, well, it tends to be a bad sign, and when they’re reporting a little bit earlier than they historically have, it means that there could be good news on the horizon.

Steven Levine

So, this activity you can sort of factor into your calculus, or your risk profile, about a certain company or sector depending on the activity that’s being conducted around these dates.

Christine Short

That’s correct, it’s just one piece in your … or like I said, mosaic of how you’re valuing the company. And obviously you’re not going to use this in a silo. You’re going to put this along with other datasets, but a lot of the time … and again, we’ll get to some data around this … but about two-thirds of the time we do find when it comes to earnings dates, directionally, the data we’re collecting does tell you something about where the company is heading.

Steven Levine

So, I mean, I’d love to hear maybe an example or two of a company that’s proven this out. What’s happened exactly?

Christine Short

Ok, yeah, I’ll give you a couple of recent scenarios. So, first let me talk about the metrics that we use to kind of measure whether a company is reporting early, where they’re reporting late. It’s called the ‘Date Breaks Factor’. It’s a Wall Street Horizon proprietary measure. We use a modified Z-score protocol, and that looks at the standard deviations from the norm. And it captures, really, to what extent a confirmed earnings date deviates or breaks from a historical trend for the same quarter. So, we look back five years, and if the Date Breaks Factor is negative, well, it means the earnings date is confirmed to be later than the historical average, while positives, earlier.

So, let me give you an example from Q1 earnings season, which was just this last quarter: Hyatt. So, they had an earnings date that moved a week later than usual. When the conference call came around, they reported a net loss of $73 million. And you saw the stock fall in the post-earnings drift period. What I thought was interesting about this one is it wasn’t an industry-wide problem, because you saw Hilton, Wyndham, Starwood … they all posted profits. So, this would have given you insight had you had the Date Breaks Factor of -3, which -3 … meaning that’s the worst reading you can have … meaning they have really deviated from when they historically would report earnings, and you should definitely pay attention. It’s kind of like a red alert. So, it was interesting to me that this isn’t an industry-wide issue. This is a Hyatt issue, and we want to look at Hyatt in this particular quarter.

I’ll give you another example of a what we call a ‘Negative Date Breaks’, and that was eBay from the fourth quarter. Now, we were kind of looking at this, you know, not as ‘Oh, this for sure means something’. They did have a CFO change last year, so we were aware that when there’s a management change, yeah, dates move. Sometimes, a new CFO comes in and decides, you know, we’re not reporting on the second Tuesday of the quarter anymore. ‘I want to report on this date.’ So, again, this is where being aware of a company, and knowing about a company, is helpful rather than just taking this as a complete signal. But anyhow, for the fourth quarter, eBay confirmed an earnings date that was nearly two weeks later than usual. That was very unusual for them. And while earnings per share and revenues did come in slightly ahead of expectations, they warned of slowing growth in the year ahead. They kind of blamed it on a declining consumer base due to pent up demand for brick-and-mortar shopping – post-COVID-19 pandemic, right?

Steven Levine

Yeah, yeah.

Christine Short

So—

Steven Levine

Welcome back to the mall, I guess, right? That’s a revival for some of those places.

Christine Short

Sounded like a bit of a scapegoat excuse, ’cause we’ve seen other e-commerce continue to do well. But, anyhow, the stock fell. It fell about 6% in the days following the report, and, you know, they beat their headline numbers, so, even … it’s not always…. We know when we look at quarterly earnings, it’s backwards looking. You really want to look forward at the guidance, and the guidance for eBay wasn’t great going forward. So, those are two negative examples.

We do tend to see more companies delay earnings than advance, but I’ll quickly leave you with a positive example from Q4 staying kind of within the travel and leisure sector like Hyatt. We had Park Hotels and Resorts. They were post-spinoff with Hilton. So, again, maybe things were changing, because, you know, a lot of times we see either in a spin-off environment, or an M&A environment, there will be a bit of a shake up as to when companies are reporting. However, they advanced their earnings date by a week. They had a massive beat on the top and bottom line, and the stock went up 4% in the post-three-day earnings drift. So, there’s an example of the flip side of things when a company actually advances earnings, and then they come out, and it’s because they had such good news they couldn’t wait to share it with the marketplace.

Steven Levine

Yeah, I mean, it’s really amazing to see – especially for Park Hotels, and especially within the hotel industry, in general, and you mentioned Hilton, Wyndham, Starwood – during pandemic, they were struggling, as you can imagine, with occupancy rates and all that…. It’s very interesting to see such a positive example from Park Hotels and Resorts. Really interesting stuff.

But let’s go back a bit, ’cause you mentioned there’s been some academic research conducted on this…. Can you elaborate a bit on that? What are some of the studies that have been done on this?

Christine Short

Yeah, so the main study we refer to, I believe last time it was updated was 2016, it’s called, ‘Time Will Tell: Information in the Timing of Scheduled Earnings News’ – that was from Eric So of MIT and Travis Johnson from the University of Texas – and they demonstrated exactly what I’ve been speaking of. Earnings calendars have strong predictive powers for firms … earnings news and future returns … specifically when you’re looking at, you know, an earnings announcement that is earlier than usual – that tends to correlate with good news. Then, delaying expected earning dates tends to correlate with bad news. And what they found was advancers … those that pulled their earnings dates earlier than, you know, historically they had been reporting … those outperformed delayers by more than two-and-a-half percent in the month after those revisions are observed.

So, where returns track reported earnings news, and, you know, are concentrated at the time of announcements…. So, that was kind of the beginning of … ‘Yeah, there is something in this news’ that not only does it correlate with good or bad news in many cases, but there is an actual movement in those stocks above, you know, the advancers versus the delayers. So, that’s one of the big papers that we refer to when we’re collecting this data.

Steven Levine

So, essentially, I’m seeing these as indicators – the date changes. I think you mentioned earlier that the Date Break Factors … about two-thirds of the time, they’re directionally accurate, is that right? What makes or breaks the Date Break Factor? I mean, why is it that some of the time they’re accurate … some of the time they’re not? And how can you count on them, exactly? Or can you?

Christine Short

Yeah, so let me first clarify: When I talk about the Date Break, it’s in and of itself an outlier. So, anytime we flag something, it’s an outlier, and so we’re not, you know, using the entire universe. So, we only flag those that significantly deviate from the normal reporting time, and we try to go six years back. I mean we have data going back to 2006, but we’d like to use more recent data, because, you know, things certainly change over a 15–16-year history. So, you can’t rely on the entire history. You’d like to go back at least four quarters.

And, like I said, yeah, it doesn’t hold true in all cases. It is two-thirds of the time. That’s what we’ve observed. But, again, there’s other reasons for changing a date that has nothing to do with financial performance, like a change in CFO or management, like M&A activity, spin-offs, or simply an error. You know, we’ve had instances where one of our analysts have noticed – ‘Hey, you know, Company XYZ always reports on the second Tuesday of the quarter. This quarter. they have confirmed their earnings date for Thursday. Let’s call them up.’ They call it the IR department, and in fact it’s just a mistake. So, we try to do a lot of that digging on our own, just because we know these companies so intimately that we can pinpoint the exact day that we expect them to report. But there’s certainly a variety of other reasons, and that’s why we say, yeah, it’s not always accurate.

So, what I would do, is anytime I see a really significant Date Breaks Factor – so, that would be positive three (+3) or negative three (-3). Companies really advancing their earnings more than usual – that’s a +3; – 3, meaning they’re delaying more than usual. I’d look into that more. Has there been a change in management? A new CFO? Any M&A activity that could impact, or be the reason, that they’re changing this date … that they’re, you know, changing their speaker at a conference, et cetera. And, so, you know, you want to do a little more digging around those things. But I also look at the trajectory of the company. What’s guidance look like? What are analysts saying? And, so, I kind of put together the full picture, and if the Date Breaks Factor is supporting – either one way or the other – I use that in there, but if it seems like everything is going one way, Date Breaks is saying something else, I try to investigate why that might be.

And again, sometimes they just decide to change their date. There might not be a reason, but about, you know, 67% of the time, we find there is a reason for it.

Steven Levine

It makes sense to me that if a company is undergoing a significant amount of stress, and you follow that company, then … and they changed their date to a certain, you know, maybe a couple of weeks out or something like that – you kind of can anticipate, perhaps, that could be bad news. But to dig into it is an entirely different story. You just never know. But does it matter the amount of delayed earnings that the that the company does? I mean, let’s say it’s, like, you know, two to three days versus a few weeks or a month. They change an announcement date, say, a month out. Does that matter? Does it even happen? What would those kinds of differences allude to, if anything?

Christine Short

Yeah, so I’d say this is very company dependent. You know, you have companies that … they swing every which way, right? Sometimes they report this week. Sometimes they report that— And it’s insignificant, right? Because they’re very volatile with when they decide to report earnings. And then there are others that are very disciplined. The banks, for example. They always confirm earnings, you know, either on their call, or the day after their current quarterly call, they’ll confirm for a quarter out. And, so, you know, certainly if you saw one of the banks not doing that, you’d— You know, that doesn’t even have to do with when they’re confirming earnings for, it’s just the fact that are they confirming earnings, right? So, there are some that are very disciplined, certain companies, and then others that are not. What I’ll say is there is academic research – another paper, it’s called: ‘Is There News in the Timing of Earnings Announcements?’ That was Josh Livnat of NYU and Li Zhang at Rutgers. And they focused their study on dates that were at least four days away from the tentative forecasted date, so, either earlier or later, and they found those delays and advances to be the most meaningful. I think, sometimes, something else I focus on is: Is it one week out? Or is it exactly, you know, one week? If it’s seven days, are they rolling it over to the next Tuesday, because of where it falls in the calendar? I think you see this more in Q1, because fourth quarter earnings that are happening in the first quarter. So, you’ve got the New Year. You’ve got Martin Luther King, Jr. Day….

Steven Levine

Yes, yes.

Christine Short

You know, you’ve got some federal holidays in there … you’ve got Presidents’ Day…. And, so, we always find that quarter reporting is a little bit longer, and companies kind of move around a little bit more. But, as a rule of thumb, you really gotta look at the company, what they’ve been doing historically, and then you know, is it four days or more? Yeah. But sometimes that will tell you, ‘Well, that is significant’. If it’s a day or two, it might not mean anything to the specific company. So, again, you just have to know the names that you’re looking into. And if you’re doing the proper research, you … that’s something you might know. But, for now, we’re just kind of looking company-specific, and is it something more than four or five days? And does that kind of set off an alert in our heads, like, ‘Oh, we really should pay attention to this one, ’cause it’s more than we typically see.’

Steven Levine

Yeah, I think anyone casually looking at this might think these numbers are somewhat arbitrary, but they’re really not. I mean, there’s been these studies done, as you’ve mentioned, that really point to the significance of certain numbers of days – this ‘four’ threshold, for example.  I think it’s very valuable to lean on these kinds of indicators in these kinds of specific ways. But, you know, another variable, I suppose, is the kind of event where the date gets moved. I mean, for example, a change in earnings announcement. Does that have a more or less of an effect, you know, on the performance, say, of a stock, than, say, a dividend [date] change or an investor conference move? Is the type of event weighted in terms of its value?  

Christine Short

Yeah, we haven’t specifically done research on the type of event. We just anecdotally find that the most impactful changes to track are earnings date changes – that’s what we most closely follow; it’s what investors care about the most. We recently did a client survey, and the majority of respondents ranked earnings announcements, earnings date changes as the top two corporate events they found important to follow. But again, that’s … you know, you use those other events as parts of your story. I like to use, kind of, investor conferences, or things of that nature, in peer comparison. Like, if you have a tech company that is not participating in one of the main industry events, but all of their peers are, what does that say about the one that’s not participating? And, so, you can do it by a process of elimination, as well, right?

So, now we do mostly focus on earnings dates, but, of course, there’s a ton of events that companies hold … and it’s gotten a little dicey…. Obviously, the last couple of years because of COVID and whether or not they’re holding them at all. Or are they virtual versus in-person? So, we’ve done a bunch of research around that. And, so, just again, more information for you to have on these companies and do with it what you will.

But I’d say, for sure, we’re tracking earnings dates and those changes. Those revisions are the most impactful changes that investors can follow.

Steven Levine

So, they decided to have an investor conference for certain types of companies – let’s say they’re media companies. And one of the media companies in that industry decided they weren’t going to show up to the Zoom call – it was a virtual call. And they didn’t have their CEO or the scheduled speaker – maybe it was the CEO or CFO was scheduled – but they had no representative whatsoever, and they just said, ‘Okay, we’re bowing out of this.’ That sounds like something of a red flag?

Christine Short

Yeah, you know, we did some work on this last year on Tripadvisor – just when the online travel names were kind of ramping back up. People were getting more comfortable traveling again, and we started to see movement in that segment. There were a bunch of bank-sponsored media and tech conferences that Tripadvisor, specifically … I think it was the beginning of March last year…. There was a Deutsche Bank, a Morgan Stanley, a Bank of America … I think I have those right. And they’re all kind of around the beginning of March, and a lot of the OTA’s [Online Travel Agencies] participate in them, but only Tripadvisor was speaking at all three. I think they had someone very high up, like the CFO participating. So, we always kind of more heavily weight that. And then if you looked at Booking [Booking.com], or you looked at Travelzoo, or some of the other names there, they might be at one … or Expedia … they might be at one, but they weren’t at all. Some of them weren’t at any. And then we found in the consequent quarter’s months, Tripadvisor ended up outperforming and so, you know, it’s perception is reality, right? Even if Tripadvisor’s not doing great, just the fact that they show up makes it look a little better, right? So, they’re out there. They’re in the media. They’re addressing things. If I know nothing about Tripadvisor, I think that’s a good sign, right, that they’re being invited and participating.

Steven Levine

Absolutely. Yeah.

Christine Short

So, again, their balance sheet could be terrible, and if I know nothing about that, I just see they’re more visible…. They’re also directing the narrative, you know, if their CFO is getting out there and talking, well, then other people can’t talk for them because he’s out there doing it. And, so, some of the other names that chose not to participate, well, now there’s rumblings about them on Wall Street. You know, like, ‘Well, they didn’t … they didn’t show up.’ So, that’s one other, I’d say.… I’m not sure that companies.… I’m sure they do – they think about how to control their narrative, but I don’t know that they know if investors are really tracking where they are and where they’re not. But that’s certainly something that we’ve been following.

Steven Levine

So, we have all this context now about corporate body language. So, let’s talk about the current market we’re in. I mean, we’ve already touched on some of the losses we’ve been seeing, right, in this bear market. I mean, it’s just been brutal. And I imagine there’s been a great deal of activity, right? I mean, what have you been seeing in this bear market? I mean, has there been an uptick in the number of cases of certain events, you know, maybe more than others? You know, maybe more than before we started really seeing this downturn and all this volatility? For example, I mean, have there been, say, more earnings announcement delays, for example, now more than before the bear market downturn?

Christine Short

Yeah, so we’re certainly starting to see the pendulum swing, right? It’s not dire yet. We have an index called the LERI – it’s the Late Earnings Report Index. It tracks a number of late reporters versus early. The baseline is 100. So, anytime you get over 100, you kind of gotta start to worry like, ‘Okay, more of these outliers are late reporters versus early.’ And for the last five quarters when we were in that great post- COVID, or post-lockdown, really, bull market, we had more advanced … companies advancing earnings than we had delaying. And, as I mentioned, that historically is not the case. Usually, for every one company that is advancing, we have a little more than one company delaying, so it’s like 1.1 – is the ratio, really.

So, after five quarters of having more advances than delayers, we’re right on par now for the current, you know, second quarter that’s reporting. For, you know, every one company that’s delaying, we’ve got one advancing. And, so, we’re starting to see that trough kind of form. The good days that companies have enjoyed over the last .. really, year and a half … seem to be coming to an end. Not to say that it’s this, like, blazing red signal at this point, but we’re starting to see it’s changed slightly quarter to quarter. And, to me, that just shows companies are uncertain about the second-half of the year. They don’t know what they’re going into. We’re starting to see second-half expectations come down. We’re starting to see 2023 – we’ve got a few banks out already – Bank of America … they’re expecting negative earnings growth next year. So, some of those numbers are starting to flip.

It’s not happening immediately, but everyone’s on recession watch. They’re looking at what’s happening with inflation – we have CPI over 9%. We’ve got the Fed continuing on with raising interest rates. And these are things that companies are very nervous about. So, yes, we would expect in the current environment to see more companies delaying earnings, not even necessarily as a sign that they’re going to report bad news, but sometimes they’re just pumping the brakes to figure out what is going on.

And in one metric I’ll mention – it’s kind of a pre-confirmation – is something we track called ‘confirmation timing’. Not necessarily are companies confirming for a date that’s historically in line, but are they confirming at all? Like I mentioned with the banks … banks always confirm from the day after, or during, their conference call. We’re starting to see some companies, you know, kind of not confirm when we usually see them, which to me is the precursor, right? So, let’s think … 3M, Intel, Costco … those are three big names. They always confirm earnings the day after they report the last quarter, and they were all late-confirmed. They’ve all since confirmed for the second quarter, but just in the last week. So, for us, that’s even a very early kind of red flag, like, ‘Oh, these companies aren’t even committing to an earnings date.’ And I think…. To me, that signals they’re just trying to figure out … get a grasp on what’s happening, and kind of taking in all of their information to figure out: ‘How are we going to give guidance? What’s the picture going to look like second-half of the year?’ You know, once you get to this July reporting period, it’s really pivotal, ’cause investors are expecting to see second-half, and even early 2023, guidance.

So, for now, like I said, we’re about 1:1 ratio of advances versus delayers, but we are starting to see some more companies, even those very high profile, hold back on even confirming at all.

Steven Levine

Wow, you know that just adds to that uncertainty— The noncommittal to the confirmation is a very interesting early red flag. You know, especially with what we’re dealing with, as you mentioned, all of those economic data points have been very, very dire, to … especially, you know, certain sectors like consumer discretionary, as we mentioned earlier. Really, really unfortunate how this is all turning out.

But let’s say bull markets…. We can be a little bit more uplifting here, and think about, you know, corporate body language in a bull market. If we’re talking about gains, right, to the same extent as these losses that we’re seeing … are the signals effectively at the same volumes, but in reverse? I mean, how does that work exactly? How does volatility, either positive or negative swings, typically affect event dates?

Christine Short

So, like I said, we’ve got data going back to 2006. Really, the Date Breaks Factor that I’ve been speaking about, we can look back … I think, currently, we’re looking back at 10 years of data, and historically, over those ten years, yeah, there’s always more delayers. That’s what we’ve noticed despite the markets. But, certainly, you know, we are in a different place right now. And we were in 2020 – there was a quick two-quarter downturn bear market, but for most data companies we’ve been collecting throughout a 10-year bull market, and then we had that brief two-quarter downturn, and then we were back up. And so, now, you’re right, it’s different. And that’s the tricky part about collecting data … is that, you know, a lot of stuff worked for those ten years, and now we see doesn’t work the same way in a bear market.

So, what we’re seeing right now is, yes, more companies are reporting later because of that uncertainty that I mentioned. But it’s also that they’re not even confirming at all. And, so, we do see that that holds steady. When the environment is a little bit uncertain, we see more delayers. We see less companies confirming. We see less companies confirming other things like shareholder meetings. Or, you know, attending less investor conferences, ’cause they don’t want to be out there as much. I haven’t necessarily noticed that volatility impacts these numbers either directionally, or the volume of outliers we see. But I think the story holds true. Because it’s been volatile forever now, right? Like the last couple of years – up and down and every which way, right? It’s been a roller coaster.

Steven Levine

I hadn’t noticed. I don’t know. I think everything is kind of like, you know, just a new normal. So, we’re all living in the fat tails, you know?

Christine Short

Right?

Steven Levine

The fat tails are the normal. So, you know, volatility is just, you know, swing high … swing low. That’s normal.

Christine Short

It’s fine, right? It’s all fine, don’t get too emotional about it, but…. Yeah, so, we have seen the story plays out whether you’re in a bull market, a bear market – the same story kind of holds, and we’re going to see that going forward, here, as we work through the second-half of the year.

If we get into 2023 and things really do take a turn … but right now, like I said, we’re cutting that trough that’s indicating, ‘Okay, where companies were feeling really good about things over the last six quarters; they’re feeling okay right now,’ but we’re starting to see that take a turn. And that’s something that we’re gonna track for the second-half of the year, and as we go into the New Year, because that’s a change for us. You know, we had a couple good years, and now that metric is changing again.

Steven Levine

Yeah, I’ll be really interested to see how this all unfolds as the year progresses. But this has been really fascinating, Christine! Thank you so much for taking the time to do this. I hope you’ll be back. You’ll join us again, right? I mean that’d be great – especially—

Christine Short

Let’s do it!

Steven Levine

Yeah, let’s do it! Especially, I mean, investors are more than likely looking for as much guidance as they can get, right? I mean, navigating these markets has been really, as you said, these are uncertain times. Very interesting insights. Thank you so much!

And for our listeners, you can learn more about today’s topic in Wall Street Horizon’s webinar presentation: ‘Corporate Body Language: Key Learnings from Corporate Event Data’ – available to download at no cost at ibkrwebinars.com. Also, you can get a ton of their insights, including upcoming event dates, as well as stock analyses, on IBKR Traders’ Insight at tradersinsight.news.

You may also want to note that the data discussed in this podcast is available via the IBKR API.

And until next time, I’m Steven Levine with Interactive Brokers.

Related Links:

Wall Street Horizon

Wall Street Horizon – White Papers

Disclosure: Interactive Brokers

The analysis in this material is provided for information only and is not and should not be construed as an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy any security. To the extent that this material discusses general market activity, industry or sector trends or other broad-based economic or political conditions, it should not be construed as research or investment advice. To the extent that it includes references to specific securities, commodities, currencies, or other instruments, those references do not constitute a recommendation by IBKR to buy, sell or hold such investments. This material does not and is not intended to take into account the particular financial conditions, investment objectives or requirements of individual customers. Before acting on this material, you should consider whether it is suitable for your particular circumstances and, as necessary, seek professional advice.

The views and opinions expressed herein are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Interactive Brokers LLC, its affiliates, or its employees.

Any trading symbols displayed are for illustrative purposes only and are not intended to portray recommendations.

In accordance with EU regulation: The statements in this document shall not be considered as an objective or independent explanation of the matters. Please note that this document (a) has not been prepared in accordance with legal requirements designed to promote the independence of investment research, and (b) is not subject to any prohibition on dealing ahead of the dissemination or publication of investment research.

Disclosure: Interview Relationship with IBKR

The interviewee’s employer or associated organization has a business relationship as a client and futures commission merchant, or FCM, with Interactive Brokers.