Morning in Arizona

Morning in Arizona
Rainbows over Canyonlands - Dave Stoker

The Headline Animator

Sunday, November 09, 2008

Slipping Into Darkness

From October 29, 2008

The Federal Reserve Board today, at 2:15 pm, announced their obligatory 50 basis point cut of the Federal Funds Rate, from 1.5 per cent to 1 per cent. This is the latest action taken to assuage investors’ fears about the hydra-bear market that has engulfed all capitalism. A triple digit rally was quickly vaporized with an erroneous General Electric rumor concerning the company’s 2009 earnings.

What are not mistaken rumors are the disastrous economic data that continues to flow. On Tuesday came the U.S. consumer confidence index, by the Conference Board, reporting an all time low of 38, down from 68 the previous month. That same day, the S&P Case-Shiller home price index fell 1 per cent, in August from July, and 16.6 per cent, from the previous year. The Census Bureau estimates for the 3rd quarter of 2008, of some 130 million housing units, nationwide, 18.6 million stand empty; 13.8 million year-round, 4 million for rent, and 2.2 million for sale.

On Wednesday, Durable Goods Orders were reported a curved up .8 per cent versus an expected decline of 1.8 per cent. For Thursday, the October 25th week Initial Jobless Claims are announced. Expect a drop of 3,000. Why, I’m not sure.

A General Motors -Chrysler shotgun merger is one step closer to happening, according to reports. If completed, it may add an additional 25,000 auto blue and white collar auto workers to the unemployment line of fixed income investment bankers recently cashiered.

Employment is rising, however, in villages and hamlets across the land as Investment Advisors and Money Managers are deploying their minions to hotel banquet rooms and restaurant’s private cubby holes, armed with clever four-color handouts, PowerPoint Presentations, and empty explanations, as to why their propriety indicators and models could not see the greatest bear market since the Great Depression, sneak up behind them.

I have a feeling that the traditional holiday feathered vertebra – turkey; will not be served this Thanksgiving. Instead, investors will be dining, if they can still afford a meal, on black swan; only recently very, very popular fowl of spenders of others-peoples-money. Of course, it’s too late to sale stocks with portfolios down 30 to over 50 per cent. But, if these Money managers are wrong again, keep some Gray Goose handy.

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