This paper, Follow the Leader: S&P 500 as a Driver of Global Implied Volatilities, explores the analogies between our financial ecosystem and an ecosystem found in nature. An ecosystem consists of a variety of species, the most important of which is a keystone species, a species whose presence has a disproportionate effect on other organisms within the system.

This paper demonstrates that the S&P 500 is the keystone species of our financial ecosystem, and drives implied volatilities of all futures markets around the globe. There are various implications to this research for a managed futures investor, which are outlined in the paper.