Top YouTube trader Meet Kevin said he's sold almost his entire $20 million portfolio of stocks and crypto.
He said he's worried that markets have not yet reached "peak fear" and have further to fall.
Data shows that retail investors were more reluctant than usual to "buy the dip" during last week's sell-off.
A popular financial YouTuber has said he dumped around $20 million of stocks and cryptocurrencies over the weekend, as the market rout tests the "buy-the-dip" impulse of millennial traders.
Meet Kevin, real name Kevin Paffrath, has more than 1.7 million subscribers on YouTube and is widely watched by retail investors for his advice on the property and stock markets.
He shocked his viewers at the weekend by posting a video saying he'd sold 99% of his portfolio of stocks and cryptocurrencies, worth around $20 million.
Paffrath said that – despite the major sell-off in stocks seen over the past two weeks – he thinks markets have not yet hit "peak fear" and that declines have further to go.
"I'm worried that we're really just at the 'lifeboat stage' of the Titanic," he told viewers. "We're certainly not at the rescue phase yet."
Stocks have dropped sharply so far in 2022 as investors have braced for the Federal Reserve to raise interest rates over the coming year. Bond yields have risen sharply.
Tech stocks, particularly unprofitable ones, have been hit the hardest, with the Nasdaq 100 down more than 13% year-to-date. Higher bond yields have made the future earnings of tech companies look less attractive compared to other investments.
Retail, or individual, investors have spent the last two years "buying the dip" in stocks, a strategy that has paid off handsomely. Yet there are growing signs that amateur traders are losing conviction and are worried stocks won't bounce back as easily from the current rout.
Paffrath has long been an advocate of dip-buying, but told viewers that his opinion of the health of the market has changed.
He said he saw similarities between today and the stock market crashes of 1929 and 2000, with investors shunning fundamental analysis of companies in favor of momentum trades.
Retail investors were much more reluctant to buy the dip last week than in previous sell-offs, according to data company VandaTrack.
There are signs that "retail fatigue or capitulation is setting in, at least in the tech space," Ben Onatibia, senior strategist at Vanda, said. "Retail investors have been chasing rallies in value sectors like financials and energy."
Paffrath told viewers he plans to get back into the market in around 60 days, when he said inflation may show signs of cooling and the market will have had time to digest the first Fed rate hike, expected in March.
"I'm taking the entire portfolio and I'm trading it, which is extremely risky and I don't advise anybody to do it," he said.
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