Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Why Stocks Were Down Today and Other Ramblings... and Links

Getting right to the point, stocks slipped a little bit more today, oddly enough, right around another 50 points were knocked off the Dow. why is that odd, you ask?

Well, if you were going to dismantle something and didn't want anyone to take notice, you'd do it a little bit at a time, right? So, after a 50-point drop yesterday, another 55 points today receives little fanfare. Anything over 100 on the Dow, in either direction, gets the attention of Bob Pisani and the other market-watching noobs on CNBC and Bloomberg, and you don't want them going around shouting, "hey, look at this!" but 50 points, not so much.

The point is that stocks went down today (and yesterday) because that's the way the Goldman Sachs and Merrill Lynch's roll. If there were any good reason to bid stocks up, they certainly would have, but, that all got taken care of on January 2nd, to the tune of a 300-point rally. Now it's profit-taking harvest time for the quick-traders out there making all the loot, but, you know, they don't want anyone thinking it's time to head for the hills because there's a flood of bad stuff coming our way.

Uh-uh. Can't have that. The muppets must not be allowed to understand anything that is really happening. Only the global elitists are privy to the inside baseball stuff.

So, what's that bad stuff heading our way? How about a nasty, well-orchestrated fight over the debt ceiling that leads directly to a government shutdown? It has been mentioned only a few dozen times just this week, though every political empty hat says they want to avoid that at all costs. (Rubbish: we all know how loathe the pols in Washington are to actually do any work and how much they relish leisure time.)

So, yes, get ready for that, and that would precipitate some selling of stocks. Once the big guys get their profits, then the little people can take losses, all the while the talking head analysts saying things like, "this is just a little correction," or "stocks will rebound in the second half" (like Notre Dame did last night? Let's hope not).

It's been almost two weeks since the latest market moving event - the fiscal cliff miasma - so, a new crisis can't really be far off. Things should start getting heated up in a few more days or maybe around the end of January, once the new members of congress are all schooled up on their new roles and understand the rules of the game.

Yep, the debt ceiling showdown should prove to be some of the best political theatre of the year, and maybe the most disruptive. The Republicans keep threatening it, and they don't want to look like the boy who cried wolf, so, this time, they'll probably do it, and it will last maybe two or three weeks before a compromise is reached. Naturally, such a compromise will solve nothing except to get most of the furloughed federal employees back on the job, slow down the "recovery" a little and provice cover for Wall Street's anticipated lousy earnings.

So, that's why stocks were down today, but they'll be up sooner or later, and trade sideways a bit before the real deal comes down. Then, they'll drop like rocks from a tower, and it will be YOUR MONEY losing value, not THEIRS.

BTW: Alcoa (AA) kicked off earnings season after the bell, posting in-line earnings per share of six cents, which says plenty about the health of this global giant and the world economy in general. Their outlook is for aluminum demand to increase seven percent this year, due to, get this, increased demand from the aerospace industry (read: defense contractors). Whether or not that hike in demand ever materializes, well, we will just have to stay tuned. In the meantime, Alcoa is still a sub-$10 stock, which it's been for close to a year now. There's a reason for that.

Yesterday, I (that being me, Fearless Rick) opined on these pages that something was broken, though I could not quite put my finger on exactly what "it" was that had gone amiss, ending with the gloomy prospect that maybe everything was broken.

Of course, there are innumerable things broken in America and around the world, but there are many more that work, like the Internet, for instance. You're reading this, after all, on the internet. That works.

What's not working, and hasn't been for a long time is the media, but the internet is beginning to take care of that. Most people under the age of 30 get the majority of their news and opinion-making articles from the internet, not mainstream TV, newspapers or (heaven forbid!) the radio, so there's hope on that front.

So, thinking that I must find out just what it is that's broken, research ensued, which consisted of a couple of adult beverages and some internet surfing.

Well, I was right. The entire global economic system is broken, and has been broken for a long time, but I already knew that. I just didn't know exactly how badly broken it was until I came across this exceptional piece of video (8 parts) by one Ann Barnhardt, and her aptly-titled dissertation, The Economy Is Going To Implode...And You Deserve to now Why.

Ms. Barnhardt breaks the complexities of the modern global economy down to a very understandable, though frighteningly-real level that just about everyone (including politicians and tin-horn local office-holders) can understand. One may or may not agree with her approach or her views, but nobody can argue with the math, which presents an unshakable case for economic calamity. This is must viewing for anyone who wishes to understand why everything seems to be heading downhill in America or to relieve - at least for a short time - that nagging feeling that something is broken. Here's part one of the video series.

Just in case you were busy watching the disgrace of Notre Dame at the hands of Alabama last night, and missed this, here's Alex Jones going ballistic over gun control on the Piers Morgan Show. And, in case you don't know who Alex Jones is, well, you're probably just another sheeple, or maybe a sleeple (that's people who appear awake but are actually sleeping). So, here's a link to infowars.com. Enjoy the video rant.

Dow 13,328.85, -55.44 (0.41%)
NASDAQ 3,091.81, -7.00 (0.23%)
S&P 500 1,457.15, -4.74 (0.32%)
NYSE Composite 8,604.38, -32.53 (0.38%)
NASDAQ Volume 1,743,272,375
NYSE Volume 3,757,457,750
Combined NYSE & NASDAQ Advance - Decline: 3003-3411
Combined NYSE & NASDAQ New highs - New lows: 302-13
WTI crude oil: 93.15, -0.04
Gold: 1,662.20, +15.90
Silver: 30.46, +0.383

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