Sure, the economy is just fine.
That's what the pundits on Bloomberg and CNBC would have you believe.
So, if everything is so darn good, why is Macy's - which has over 700 stores in the US - closing 40 stores and laying off 4,500 employees?
And why did the NASDAQ and the Dow close the day in correction territory (down 10% from high) today, with the S&P not far off?
People who host shows and are guests on TV want you to believe it's all China's fault. Over on mainland China, their stock markets closed early for the second time this year. That's twice in four days that circuit breakers have been triggered. A 7% selloff causes the market to shut down. Those are their rules. Or, rather, those were their rules.
Early in the US session, Chinese authorities announced that they were suspending the circuit-breaker rule, so their stock markets may fall a lot deeper tomorrow than a mere 7% before everything in the People's Republic goes down the drain.
It's not China's fault. It's the fault of the Fed, the government (for looking the other way and accepting bribes from corporations and banks), and the greed of Wall Street. It's also the fault of smart people taking their money out of the rigged casino, aka Wall Street, before it all vanishes, like it did in 2000, or 2008.
Also, Yahoo! is laying off 1000 employees as part of their reorganization plan. One employee that isn't being let go, but should, is CEO Marissa Mayer, of whom Money Daily said years ago was nothing but a wannabe, a poser, with no measurable skills for running a company.
Yes, the economy is not good, Wall Street and the government is run by a gang of crooks, and, incidentally, those highly-paid CEOs, like Ms. Mayer, should be in bread lines with the rest of the people being let go, because they're incompetent.
America, a once-great country, is going down the tubes, and in a big hurry. The culprit is not some foreign entity, terrorism, guns or aliens. The reasons can be found all over the country. Greedy lawyers, greedier bankers, corrupt government officials, incompetent business leaders, and, interwoven into the fabric of this country, placid, placated, ill-educated, preoccupied, self-engrossed people who vote (or don't) in elections and think they've done their part are all part of the problem, and not part of the solution.
But, people could be the solution. If people stopped making poor decisions, stopped listening to people in authority positions, and started taking responsibility for their own lives, rather than hoping for handouts from an uncle sugar government, people could solve their problems on their own.
The concept of self-reliance has been largely lost in America, but, herms hoping it's going to make a comeback when people wise up to the antics of politicians who don't deliver on their promises and kick them to the curb, where they belong.
There are lots of problems in this country that people could solve on their own if they took charge of their own lives. That, truthfully, may be asking for too much. We've wasted too much time in this country and waited too long for the governing class to do the right thing. Now, it may be too late, and we'll all just have to fend for ourselves.
Actually, that may not be too bad a thing.
The day on wall Street was not pretty, with major indices taking a third huge loss in four days. The Dow Industrials are down nearly 1000 points so far this year, putting 2016 already 6% in the red for even the safest stocks. Averages were lower all day, with no signs of rallies, and, perhaps more telling than anything, there was no snap-back at 3:30 on short covering, which has been the norm of late.
As noted by the quotes below, WTI crude oil finished with a 33 handle, a number not seen in the oil pits in 12 years. Gold and silver have broken out of moribund ranges, though holding and advancing from these levels may be difficult, as central banks collude to keep currency that may compete with the almighty dollar, euro or yen at undesirable levels.
What's undeniable about the gold and silver rigging is that it is unsustainable long-term, though central banks and their henchmen in the COMEX have managed to keep sending the prices of precious metals lower for nearly five full years. With stocks potentially falling out of favor, bonds, cash and PMs may appear to be the best bets with which to ride out a currency storm, a scenario that could be occurring in real time as the dollar/yen carry trade continues to unwind.
There is chaos everywhere, and, for the final trading day of the new year's first week, two important developments will be how the Chinese markets fare and US non-farm payroll data for December, due for release at 8:30 am ET.
Closing prices for Thursday, January 7, 2016
S&P 500: 1,943.09, -47.17 (2.37%)
Dow: 16,514.10, -392.41 (2.32%)
NASDAQ, 4,689.43, -146.34 (3.03%)
Crude Oil 33.21 -2.24% Gold 1,109.20 +1.58% EUR/USD 1.0929 +1.41% 10-Yr Bond 2.1530 -1.10% Corn 352.00 -0.35% Copper 2.02 -3.16% Silver 14.32 +2.50% Natural Gas 2.37 +4.46% Russell 2000 1,064.57 -2.72% VIX 24.99 +21.37% BATS 1000 20,761.26 -2.29% GBP/USD 1.4618 -0.05% USD/JPY 117.5480 -0.80%