Is your heart pounding? Is your peripheral vision gone? Are you sweating.
You’re not alone.
The “flash crash” that occurred on May 6 last year was so traumatic for some traders that one year later, they’re suffering from a syndrome called “the flash-crash flashback,” the WSJ reports.
When the market gets volatile — ie. yesterday — some traders are apparently having intense physical reactions that were triggered by May 6.
A trader who was on the floor of the Chicago Mercantile Exchange on May 6 last year, when the Dow nosedived about 1,000 points in a few minutes describes the flashblacks:
Your heart pounds, you sweat. You can get sort of a tunnel vision…you’re looking at the screen, and you can’t see anything in your periphery.
The trader even had to “temporarily walk away from trading stock futures” after the crash because of the physical reaction he had to it.
Andrew Menaker, the psychologist who coined the “flash-crash flashback” syndrome, said the number of traders he’s treating has spiked over the last 12 months. Many of his patients describe “spontaneously re-experiencing the flood of anxiety and fear initially triggered by the crash.”