Let me show the first chart (in all charts I am using the COT Report):
The chart shows net positions held by speculators in S&P 500 futures. It looks like the most popular method of playing US stocks, i.e. trend following, is not working anymore. Since middle 2015 the S&P 500 index has stuck between 1,860 and 2,130 points.
What is more, speculators are less interested in taking long positions in this index - see the green arrow indicating lower net long positions held by speculators (despite higher highs in S&P 500).
Further, it looks like we are currently at some kind of an inflection point. The chart below shows that these days the largest amount of players is betting on VIX futures (the highest open interest in history), which is an alternative way of playing US stocks:
However, the question is: "What are speculators betting on?"
Well, the answer is here:
The bet is called: "Stocks go higher". The chart shows that speculators hold huge net short positions in VIX futures (they bet on lower VIX readings), which means that they are betting on higher readings in S&P 500 (lower VIX means higher stock prices).
Well, I know I was wrong on the US stock market many times. Am I wrong once again?