Efforts to produce an accurate estimate of market risk can sometimes turn into a pessimist’s paradise, leading to a paradox. If the outcome of the estimation looks positive, investors might feel that they should not count on it, and if it looks negative, the real outcome will probably be worse than expected. From that perspective, the third quarter of this year was a very unusual one, quantitatively speaking. Not only did both risk and return decline simultaneously – a rare event – but investor sentiment also turned negative during the quarter, ending at its lowest level since the March banking crisis.
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