What the ‘tech wreck’ doesn’t tell us about systematic investing

June sell-off might reveal more about discretionary investors watching factors

stock drop

When the top US technology stocks tumbled 5% on June 9, analysts and investors were quick to point the finger at systematic momentum traders.
 
The stocks that performed the worst – notably Amazon, Apple, Facebook, Google and Microsoft – had displayed the fastest growing price gains over the past year. The faster the rate of increase, the more it reversed on the day.
 
This uniformity led some to conclude the sell-off was down to systematic momentum traders exiting their positions. But there are