A fair amount of attention has been paid in the past couple of weeks to the low market volatility that has evolve in certain markets.
James Mackintosh lists some of these in a piece in the Financial Times. For example, he writes that "The 10-year yield (on Treasury bonds) has moved within a band only 23 basis points wide since January, the narrowest range for the longest time since 1978."
Furthermore, "Oil has traded between $100 and $110 for the past year-leaving it in the narrowest percentage range for the longest period since 1985."
In addition, 'The S&P 500 since February has been in the narrowest channel for the longest since February 2007, just before the subprime crisis became obvious."
And, "The dollar, too, has been heavily rangebound, at lease against other developed countries.
But, these three situations…and more…I believe contribute to a feeling on the part of investors that they really don't know which way the economy is going to go and they are trying to stay sharp so that they can move in the appropriate direction when the time is right.
I do not believe that this low volatility range we are in is a result of market complacency. I don't think there is anything to be complacent about.