Trading With The ‘Pizza Meter’

What a way to trade

So this is a fun one…

You may remember a while ago I talked about alternative data and that trader who had people watching a gold mine for truck activity.

Well, I just discovered something equally as cool…

 ‘Pizza Meter

This is how it works.

Before many major geopolitical or economic events, there’s often a spike in late-night pizza deliveries to key government buildings like the Pentagon, white house and, State Department.


The late-night work and time constraints mean a bunch of government workers are working late into the night trying to pull something substantial together.

And these people get hungry.

So what does every hungry American government worker order late at night?


There have been several cases where a spike in pizza deliveries to government buildings has preceded a crucial event.

Iraq War

“Prior to the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq, there was a marked rise in pizza deliveries to the White House, Pentagon, and State Department. This was seen as an indicator of the intensive preparations and round-the-clock meetings that were taking place in the lead-up to the military action.”

Killing of Osama Bin Laden

“In the days leading up to the operation that resulted in the killing of Osama bin Laden, there was reportedly a spike in food deliveries to the CIA headquarters in Langley, Virginia. The increase in late-night food orders reflected the heightened activity and preparations by intelligence and military officials.”

There’s more…

North Korean tensions, Libya intervention, and the first Gulf War were also noted to have seen a spike in a sneaky large Pepperoni order beforehand.

So the question I know you’re asking is…

“How can I trade and make money from this?”

Well theoretically, if you suspected that the US was about to do something impactful to the markets, you could monitor the pizza delivery places and position pre-eminently on a market that might respond the most.

Say Crude oil in the case of some kind of attack.

How you’d monitor the pizza delivery services is another question entirely… Calling every day to ask if they are busy won’t exactly work…

What about other similar ideas?

A similar thing happened at Facebook in 2014.

A spike in late-night food deliveries in the days before they announced an acquisition of WhatsApp.

And before IBM announced they were acquiring Red Hat in 2018 we saw an increased level of large tables and private dining at upscale restaurants near the headquarters as the deal was fleshed out.

Finally, in 2017 there was an increase in confidential document disposal trucks outside Mobileye. Days later they got acquired by Intel…

So back to the question, how can traders take advantage?

Well, sadly I don’t know if the typical retail trader can do anything apart from appreciate this is how well-resourced hedge funds play the game.

I guess it could be done on a smaller scale, maybe a local listed business.

But it feels like there’s a more repeatable edge to be had elsewhere.

Anyway, I thought it was interesting to see, just thinking outside the box a bit.

Where’s the edge, where’s the edge?

I do find it quite humorous that the US gov probably goes to big lengths keeping this stuff secret, only for its hand to be revealed in the most unlikely source.

Maybe China/Iran will buy all the local pizza companies…