Things are getting stranger by the day.
The stock market is a proxy for a lot of things – mostly all jumbled together into a big ball of confusion which rolls along, often picking up speed when it perhaps ought to be slowing down.
It is long and well known that business and financial decisions heavily rely on predictability and dependability. Lack of that causes –and should cause—caution and therefore often leads to risk avoidance, which mostly leads to less and slower growth and lower returns.
Uncertainty about what lies ahead now seems to be growing by the day. How much longer can the USA and world tolerate a President who seems out of control and lacks any visible, coherent strategies or goals—other than perpetuating his power?
Yet, the stock market with a seemingly endless supply of optimism, would appear to be telling us something quite different.
History tells us that the stock market is a pretty good indicator of what lies ahead a lot of the time. But, when it gets it wrong, watch out, because a lot of innocent people get quite badly hurt and often never recover.
For example, in the early part of the 20th Century there was a great stock market upturn followed by a crash (THE crash) in 1929. By 1933, a recovery was apparently well underway when the market finally took a big dive, bringing the post-crash lows of the depression.
Today’s market movements suggest good economics and finance lie ahead. But the raw substance of the world – from the Mideast, to domestic income inequality, to instability among the worlds’ major powers—foreshadow a troubled world which is struggling to get things right and straight.
It is scary to find myself sticking my neck out in the world that I supposedly know something about. The last thing a self-perceived ‘wise’ person wants is to look dumb and/or stupid.
But, what we are watching is one of those –hopefully—rare moments when what we see right in front of our noses may be seriously misleading us.
Thus, the watch word is BEWARE!
Do not bet politically or financially on any one scenario too radically.
And, expect surprises and weird timing all the time.
In time, all will be well again.
Time is everything, but at 89 ahhh!!!!!