This Week in Barrons – 9-25-2016:
“I’ve lost faith that our FED can find the right way out of this mess”… Bill Gross
For the past week or more, I’ve had the luxury of being outside the U.S. – looking in. Last week’s actions had the DOW closing around 19k with an operating economy resembling Mexico. I guess it could be worse – our DOW could be at 100k with an economy resembling Syria. But who will ‘Find the Right Way’ out of this mess?
Will our FED ‘Find the Right Way’ out? Unfortunately, our own Federal Reserve badly damaged their own credibility this week by deciding to leave the federal funds rate unchanged. The FED did tell us that they decided to wait for more evidence while: (a) the job market strengthened, (b) the economy picked up, (c) household spending grew, but (d) business fixed investment remained soft. The FED’s own dot chart showed a median forecast for only one 2016 rate increase. Their own ‘National Activity Indicator’ showed its 19th consecutive month in contraction – making it the worst non-recessionary streak in 49 years. So it shouldn’t surprise you to learn that people with functioning brain cells like Bill Gross and even CNBC’s Steve Liesman were dumbfounded with the FED’s lack of movement and came out and said: “The FED has made fools of themselves. Yes, Bill and I knew that they may not raise rates, but we didn't think they would lower their rate forecast by 30% over the next 3 years. That was stunning!” Marc Faber even suggested that the central banks will just continue to print and buy real estate, stocks, bonds, and junk bonds until they own the world. Conclusion – it’s doubtful our own FED will ‘Find the Right Way’ out.
Will our Banks ‘Find the Right Way’ out? This week we heard Congress question Wells Fargo’s CEO on creating millions of fake accounts by using existing accounts as the base, and then charging those innocent new accounts overdraft fees, credit card fees, etc. It was comical except for the fact that the CEO will NOT go to jail, and the mastermind of the plan received a $125m bonus. Only in American banking can you get rewarded for screwing tens of thousands of people. So it’s doubtful our Banks will ‘Find the Right Way’ out.
Will our FBI ‘Find the Right Way’ out? Remember when FBI Director Comey decided NOT to indict Hillary concerning the e-mail scandal? My feeling at the time was that he knew if he took it to the Department of Justice for an indictment, all of the information would be sealed as evidence, and the public would never have known what happened. The Huffington Post recently ran an ‘obituary’ on ‘Why Hillary Clinton LOST the Election’ and their reason #8 was: “James Comey - He might as well have indicted her for real, like he did in the court of public opinion. He was extremely careless.” FBI Director Comey knew exactly what he was doing. The only way he could let the American public make up their own minds was to NOT indict her, and let the information out. Even the Huffington Post realizes that now. Maybe the FBI will ‘Find the Right Way’ out.
How about WAR? Desperate times call for desperate measures. For approximately 4 years now, I've been suggesting that the elites would like nothing more than to start a war with a major player. This past weekend a horrifying event took place. We were 4 days into a brokered ceasefire in the Middle East when “a U.S. led coalition bombed the Syrian Army with phosphorus bombs - killing more than 60 soldiers and wounding more than 100. The U.S. pretends it was an accident, and that the timing was a coincidence." How on earth could the U.S. intelligence error so badly as to bomb the Syrian army and civilians? And why would the U.S. be the nation that violates a cease fire? After all, I thought we were the good guys? There is NO doubt that this was a ploy to pull Russia into a hot exchange with the U.S. A ‘hot exchange’ with Russia would cause people to forget about our fraudulent FED's monetary policy. Our FED could swing into emergency mode, print more trillions for the war machine, and no one would bat an eye. As the economy would continue to crumble, the FED could blame everything on the war. If you wish to learn more about the struggle in Syria (that is not flattering to the U.S. Government) – please review the following video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c8JppJyVxYU
How about the Debate: On Monday night at 9 pm, it is estimated that 100m people are going to tune in to watch Donald Trump face off against Hillary Clinton. To put this in perspective, the MOST popular Super Bowl received 114m views – so this event is indeed the Super Bowl of political face-offs. Last December I predicted that Donald Trump would win the primaries, and that Hillary Clinton was in much poorer health than most realized. But I also made another prediction that: "If Hillary puts on a poor showing in the first debate, the DNC (Democratic National Committee) will pull her. They will say that she's had some form of pneumonia relapse, and will substitute a different candidate (presumably Joe Biden) in her place.” Now, I still believe that.
Bring your popcorn and a stiff drink. The U.S. Super Bowl of Debates kicks off Monday night. And YES – I’m counting on one of these two individuals to ‘Find the Right Way’ Out of this mess.
Thanks to ES for his charts.
This week was clouded in more volatility with our spineless FED deciding not to hike rates, despite telling us that all of the ingredients for a rate increase were there. That same FED continued to tell us that they are not political, but just not willing to rock-the-boat ahead of The Obama Legacy.
This triggered a two-day market romp higher, taking the S&P from about 2140 to a high of 2180. Then on Friday, some of the air came out of the balloon, and we faded back down 12 points – closing at 2164.
So what now? The high is 2190, and the recent low was the intra-day low of 2120. When markets get volatile, you stop looking for trends (because there are none), and you look at ‘levels’. With a close at 2164, we are above the important level of 2160. If we don't let 2160 slip away, we will try and inch higher toward the top of the range. But, if we close under 2160, then there’s no real reason that we couldn't quickly sink right back down to the 2140 level.
The other level is the 50-day moving average of 2169. If we close back above that, it lends credence for our markets moving to new all-time-highs. But of course a lot is going to depend on what happens Monday night. If Trump does really well in the debate and Hillary does not, it might initiate a risk-off selling event in the market. Wall Street and the establishment do not like Trump, and they won't enjoy seeing their appointed queen do poorly.
What this all boils down to is that we're going to have a lot more chop. There is no real trend, and after trading sideways for almost 3 months – all that has happened is that the sideways trading range has expanded. For 40 days the range was 2160 to 2190. Then the range widened to the downside to 2120, and looked frail before they rescued us and got us back up over 2160.
With the election looming, and with the dangerous situation in Syria percolating – expect more up and down chop. Keep your position sizes low, and don't be afraid to take profits. Until we break out of the range, each day could go either way. Take care and enjoy the Debate. It ought to be interesting.
Currently I’m out of everything except gold, silver and oil:
- AG, AUY, CDE, FCX, FFMGF, FSM, HL, NGD, PAAS, PGLC and SAND.
To follow me on Twitter.com and on StockTwits.com to get my daily thoughts and trades – my handle is: taylorpamm.
Please be safe out there!
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