The torrent of earnings releases set to hit this week could only exacerbate volatility moves, analysts say. Volatility has knocked around stocks on Wall Street in record ways. Buckle up for the coming week.

News and concern over inter-bank lending, credit spreads and declining oil prices, the major averages managed to piece together a strong week that built on the lowest levels in five years.

So far in October, each day the Dow in ranges of no less than 250 points. In fact, the index saw the first 1,000-point swing in its history just over a week ago on Oct. 10. Most of this volatility has been blamed on the liquidation of assets of hedge funds and mutual funds. Rumors of poor performance at major players intensified the effect.

“No doubt the indiscriminate selling we’ve seen has been liquidation, no doubt. Everything is for sale,” says Art Hogan, chief market analyst with Jefferies. Hogan points out that all the indexes have fallen by roughly the same percentage, which indicates that funds are not selling stocks in one industry to invest in another.

The news about the deleveraging of the hedge fund industry is already behind the event, to a certain extent. A lot of hedge funds have a very high level of cash right now. As we come into next week, the question now is whether cash levels are high enough for everyone’s comfort and is the indiscriminate selling is behind us or not, and can we start focusing on fundamentals.
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