- A post that analyzes how often Michael Burry’s bearish forecasts come true is trending on Reddit’s WallStreetBets.
- The “Big Short” investor often warns about financial bubbles and crashes.
- The Reddit user concluded that Burry is more often wrong than right with his predictions.
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The legendary investor rose to fame betting against the US housing market in the mid-2000’s, with his billion-dollar bet immortalized in the book and movie “The Big Short.”
Since then, Burry has issued several bearish forecasts, like a 2017 warning that the global financial system is going to collapse, and most recently a warning that the market is in the “greatest speculative bubble of all time.”
User “u/nobjos” who told Insider their first name is “Noble” posted an analysis in several Reddit threads questioning how many times Burry has been correct. The user originally posted it on their Substack blog, though the post in WallStreetBets received over 5,000 upvotes.
“I recently observed that in every news article/tweet, he always talks about an impending crash. As recently as last week, he issued another warning stating that there would a ‘mother of all crashes soon due to the meme-stock and *****currency rally that will approach the size of countries,'” Noble said. “Basically, what I wanted to analyze was whether Michael Burry always predicts a crash and gets lucky when there is an actual crash or does his prediction actually turns out to be true most of the time?”
Noble tracked news articles that mentioned Burry forecasts from the last 15 years. He then compared the S&P 500’s return one month, one quarter, and to date after Burry’s bearish call. If Burry specified a stock, he used the particular stock as a benchmark.
The analysis shows that the S&P 500 has gone up 93% since Burry’s 2017 warning about a global financial meltdown and 50% since his 2019 prediction that index fund inflows are the next market bubble. Tesla stock has mostly gone down following Burry’s latest musings.
Noble concludes that “Burry’s only prediction that we can say confidently was right” after 2008 is that he called bitcoin a “speculative bubble” in March 2021. Bitcoin has dropped roughly 30% since his prediction, though Noble noted there isn’t enough data yet to show how Burry’s prediction will turn out over the next few years.
“I have immense respect for Michael Burry and his skills. He was a doctor and worked as a Stanford Hospital neurology resident and then left to start his own hedge fund that became extremely successful. But, as you can see from the above analysis, he is more often wrong than right with his predictions,” Noble wrote.
“But, the stock market rewards predictions disproportionately . Out of the 100 predictions you make, even if you get 99 wrong but get one extremely unlikely event right your overall returns will still be extremely high,” he added.
As for now, it remains to be seen whether Burry’s latest forecasts will come true. Some on Wall Street argue bubbles can take years to form and eventually pop, and it’s nearly impossible to pinpoint when the crash will occur.