This is funny in terms of stock-market “narratives” during these crazy times.
By Wolf Richter for WOLF STREET.
At first, long ago, the narrative was that a Trump victory would boost stocks. And then when this became more uncertain, the narrative was that a Biden victory would also boost stocks, and that a “Blue Wave” would boost stocks hugely because it would trigger the mother of all stimulus packages, which would spread trillions of dollars directly and indirectly to these companies, which would be good for stocks.
And so it was that a victory by either presidential candidate would boost stocks, and that only a disputed election outcome with a long drawn-out legal battle or a split government would derail stocks.
And now, that Trump is already disputing the still unknown election outcome and is threatening a long-drawn-out legal battle if he loses – with Biden leading in electoral votes but millions of mail-in ballots left to be counted – even the threat of a disputed election and a long-drawn-out mess is now boosting stocks.
And even funnier: The only remaining outcome that would not boost stocks, and by some measures would be the worst possible outcome during these times – namely a split government, with the Senate remaining under Republican control and Biden in the White House, and therefore no stimulus package – is suddenly a distinct possibility. But it now too is seen as boosting stocks because it would mean, according to the newly fashioned narrative, that the absence of a Blue Wave would be good for Big Tech because it would be less threatened by antitrust pressures.
These narratives are funny. They change and adapt constantly, like a weather vane. Major investment banks come out with reports to create and support these narratives, and adjust them as probabilities of outcomes change, with the purpose being that whatever happens, and no matter how it happens, and regardless of why or when it happens, it has to boost stocks, according to the narratives.
At the moment, all stock market indexes are shooting higher, with the Nasdaq up 4% and the S&P 500 index up 3%, after stock futures went through a roller-coaster session overnight.
The Russell 2000 had been in the red this morning, despite the other indices spiking, on fears that the mother of all stimulus packages would not be happening. The narrative was that these smaller stocks would benefit most from a stimulus package. And now, that narrative changed too, and the Russell 2000 is now spiking higher.
But in a huge contrary move, the 10-year Treasury yield is now down 16 basis points, from the spike to 0.93% last night to 0.77% now, with prices of these Treasury securities jumping, which would normally indicate a flight to safety, in direct disagreement with stocks, or whatever.
The dollar jumped overnight against a basket of other currencies, in a flight-to-safety trade, with the DXY Dollar Index going over 94 overnight, but then this trade started unwinding, with the DXY currently back at 93.48, whatever the narrative of the moment may be.
There are always narratives around the markets – the stories of why asset prices go one way or the other if certain things happen. But I cannot remember these narratives having been this silly and contradictory and all over the place simultaneously, a smorgasbord of narratives practically that change constantly but in effect take any and all outcomes, even messy outcomes, and fashion them into a positive for stocks.
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Who can trust any numbers? Jeffrey Epstein’s Palm Beach mansion seems to have finally been sold for about $18 million, $2 million under the original asking price. The developer who bought it plans on demolishing the house and building a new waterfront mansion in its place. Epstein bought the place in 1990 for $2 million. So, a nine-fold increase in this property’s value over 30 years. That increase doesn’t jibe with the doctored rate of inflation we are given by the government, a rate used to determine Social Security pension increases, among other things. Sure, there are places like Baltimore and Detroit where housing costs are down, but those cities are loaded with war zones where no one wants to live. Depend on government numbers prepared by government workers. Have you ever tried to contact a government agency and talk to an employee there about a problem you are having with that agency? Almost all the time-servers are do-nothings who seem to be suffering from low-grade autistic spectrum disorder. Remember the UI debacle starting in March when it took months for some claimants to get UI benefits? Have a nice day.
Location; kocation; kocation. Thirty years ago there was a lot more land were to build a mansion in tbe Area, thirty years later? Not so much.
Plus the dollar loses it’s value over time.
$2,000,000 in 1990 is worth $3,982,861.51 today or at 100 dollars in 1990 being requivalent to 203.82 dollars in 2020… 4,076,400 dollars that’s even more. So the mansion actually sold for 4.41 times more than the money he originally paid for it.
The new owner said he will demolish the existing 14,000sqft mansion and rebuild a new 14,000sqft mansion.
Presumably he will expect to recuperate the $18m purchase price and say $6m new build price, and take the vic of say $3m on top. New MacMansion on big steroids!
Great place, Palm Beach. Sit back, have your pina colada, and bags full of used $10,000 notes fall straight into your lap. Vote orange!
he needs to thank the 99% of dumb dumb’s for all the $money
Vote for the Fed and MMT.
Orange man or creepy man are only for news cycles.
Asset inflation, war against savings, income inequality – all are successful products of Fed overlords.
How long has this market been suffering the worst case of cognitive dissonance? Let another round of Hopium to save the day and up and up we go. If this market is a person, it would be your typical Facebook user that lives strictly in their own echo chamber. Any news or narrative is to support their own POV.
That’s actually a really good analogy, Phoenix.
We will see how it works out this time, but I think the reality is that years of over performance of the stock market is followed by years of under performance. It’s easy to get fat, dumb and happy thinking the dance is going to keep on going forever, but as in Cinderella’s case the party was going strong at midnight.
I went back and looked at a 150 year stock market chart. Stock market valuations were much more stable before the Fed. You can see the whole characteristic of the stock market changed once the Fed came into being. Checked this months valuation models. Most I look at show us at all time valuation highs to maybe at 96% percentile to all time high. A bubble looking for a pen. Maybe it will end when Congress locks up over stimulus while election is fought out in court.
The issue is where you can get a decent yield? Seems nowhere. Even BTC is at ATH.
All assets are high unless you find some special situation. In my opinion it’s not a time to buy assets. Pay down debt if you have any. If not it’s a good time to make a plan for what to buy during the next panic.
Some of us have to shoot for the stars to get what you got, Old School. Gambling sucks but in the worst case I live a marginal life in retirement, in the best case I get to live the retirement I really want (which is not opulent but starts early around age 55). So I gamble on the stock market.
A bernie Sanders supporter ‘gambling on the stock market’ – I’ve heard it all now!!!
And if you hold cash, you’ll get shafted by the one-off wealth tax which gets all those greedy “rich” people… who have been “naughty” and cashed out into the ATH haha.
The best thing to do is hold assets that you’ve held for decades.
Or very astutely buy just what you need and know can work for you.
Ie, a property with potential that fits your needs.
A business/equipment that does the same. Etc.
You’ll get yield if you’re willing to work to get it.
No off the shelf products will work.
To spin another narrative, now is a great time for all those willing to find yield in niches because they’ll likely survive the current bleak times, survive any correction, and thrive after the pandemic and financially uncertain times ‘resolve’
A company out of Minnesota that is in the agriculture and energy business and is a farmer-owned coop, CHS Inc., closed just now @ $29.44. They pay a $2 annual yield in 50 cents per quarter which is almost 7%.
The last five years: high of $32.24 on 1 August 2016 & low of $25.29 on 25 March 2020.
As WOLF STREET readers know, I am a Minnesotan who made his money in Ag. Two companies also in Minnesota that do well in the Ag business, but don’t trade publicly are Cargill and Land O’Lakes. The latter is a member-owned coop.
Where to get a decent yield?
Most people don’t know to consider this, but you simply go short. In today’s market, going short is how you preserve your assets and get a decent yield. In fact, you’re likely to get an excellent yield.
Ironically, going short today is safer than going long the market.
But many investors are NOT prepared emotionally and by training to go against the mkt for over 10 years. Look at all those bears since ’09! Their best days may be ahead!
The Buffett’s famous Mkt cap to GDP is over 220% a, record. So is the marging debt levels
I trade with swing trading with dominantly negative bias with options, leveraged ETfs ( both ways!) Rebound after dip more profitable with FOMO dip investors there! But long term it is secular BEAR, with bear traps along the way!
Like telegraphing from the Titanic to get some insurance.
Statistically I agree that being short stock prices is better than being long stock prices, but isn’t there a monthly cash flow cost of being short? Market can be priced stupid for a decade or two. Are you able to suffer the cash flow losses til you are proven correct?
There are more ETfs than STOCKS imho for the ‘total’ return including yield/dividend. The more one aims, more volatility to bear.
Gold popped almost 55 bucks up today!
NEM is fairly valued with div at 2.5%. One has to accumulate by slowly nibbling at these stocks. 3M is some what richly (which stock is NOT!?) with 3.67% div/yield.
For those who can tolerate some volatility Corp -blue chip stocks!bond etf, BYLD with 3.15%, exp ratio 0.20% YTD 2.59% Checkout these at yahoo/finance for due diligence. Also checkout QLTA it’s (blue chips) holdings! SKOR has Apple bonds!
Fed is stuck at 0.25% cannot lower or raise but keep buying 120B/month. Cannot afford not to support Corp Credit Bond mkt! There are a lot choices to those who can research around online.
(been in the mkt since ’82)
PS: Do your own due diligence on all my suggestions or just ignore them!
Actually, statistically (i.e. historically), being short stocks has destroyed your wealth. Most of the time, you do NOT want to be short.
Everything has a cost, both long and short.
Great investors are great because they are able to make the correct judgment call, at the right time, at the right price.
Now is a great time to be short the market. The risk/reward is highly favorable towards it.
Obviously, I’m an anonymous person writing on the Internet. So use your own judgment.
Yield is a mirage, or more correctly – a backward looking phenomenon.
You are right.
But with Fed holding the rate at 0.25% for years to come, the yiels risk lies in company’s finance. I stick to Credit rated Corp bond around 2.5%
check out ILTB (Shares Core 10+ Year USD Bond ETF)
Caution: highly volatile due to leverage and tied with 10y bond
Same with ZROZ (PIMCO 25+ Year Zero Coupon U.S. Treasury Index Exchange-Traded Fund)
Do your own due diligence!
Look at Japanese stocks – good yields, good companies, and none of the political bs going on in the USA.
Yeah, I’m surprised there isn’t a narrative yet describing how all the narratives are bullish… besides yours just now of course… it must come from a banks desk lol
“To da’ moon Alice! To ‘da moooon’”
Change is coming. Micro and macro. A recent issue of a weekly periodical is awaiting my morning reading and contemplation. It focuses on the ‘Great Reset.’ Not just in the U.S. but world wide. I hope it will be as interesting as the topic suggests.
To the moon, for sure.
Pffft, I’ve been listening to people talk of fundurrmentals and a big correction/recent due since 2008/9 time.
I’m sure people said it in the 70s, 80s, 90s etc.
While everyone is willing to lie to themselves the lie can keep going.
A slow generationally imperceptible swirl down the drain of hegemony rather than a sudden reset is much more likely.
That is what people want.
While everyone would rather us slowly fade away, rather than crash and burn and fight our way back to true prosperity, then that is what we’ll get.
Very very true. We all know what they say about the slowly-boiled frog…
The much talked about GREAT RESET can happen ONLY when FED?CBers allow price discovery and stop QEs!
AS long as Fed is buying 120B/month treasuries & MBSs, the mkt has support. They also supporting Corp Credit bond whenever needed. we will find out post-fact!
You can’t ever forget the big picture. The price is what you are paying. What are you getting? What you are getting in the big picture buying the SP500 is a little over $100 of earnings on average and a little over $50 of dividend income with a potential growth of earnings and dividend of about 3 – 4%. If interest rates were going to be zero forever, it might be worth paying $3500 for, but I don’t think that will be the case.
Stocks went down quite a bit when Trump was elected to his first term. Then, the narratives shifted, sending stock prices to the sky.
The investment banks have to keep the narratives going, because they know they don’t produce anything of value. If they couldn’t sell narratives effectively, they would all be starving in the streets, rather than living high in the Hamptons.
Investment banks also have to convince the public that people can actually beat average market returns consistently, or else trading volume, volatility, and investment banking products would dry up.
They’ve been enormously successful selling a flawed proposition. If 100% of people think they can beat the market, we know that 50% of them will fail. Law of averages. Thus, investment banks have more in common with MGM and Wynn entertainment complexes than productive businesses that produce goods or services of value.
McConnell and Biden have a long history of working together during times of gridlock. If past is prologue, then we can expect the same thing to happen now.
Yes, but they have to deal with Pelosi and a Democratic house that is becoming more and more radical by the day.
Do you really think so?
If Biden becomes President – wouldn’t McConnell and the Republicans drag their feet, in order to apply pain to Biden’s reign and set up a potential Republican return in 2024?
Much like Pelosi refused to pass anything to ensure pain against Trump?
Secondly, the Republicans are going to pick up ~18-20 seats in the House. Not enough to gain a majority but no longer strong Democrat control.
I “really” like the Wolf Report however the excessive use of the word “narrative” as a catch basin reminds me the the baby boomers use of “you know” that made statements look like swiss cheese, as well as our current millennials use of “like”. Otherwise great reporting.
“Narrative” is the TOPIC of this article.
The narrative is made up of soundbites. Sometimes the soundbite presupposes the market, the president tweets a deal with China. Or no deal on stimulus. None of it works without fresh money and we have plenty of that.
You are really providing high quality content. I am curious on your business outlook for the site. I would think that the potential is there for it to be a huge financial success if you reach adequate scale.
I read one gentlemen’s financial site that didn’t put up near the content as you and he shared he was making the equivalent of a good salary pretty quickly. We all hope you are successful and I personally would be interested in an annual progress report if you care to share, even if it is not financial information. Just a sense of if you are achieving your goals.
Traffic is up a lot, and I’m very happy with that. Ad revenues are down, thanks to Big G and some other factors, and I’m not happy about that. I’ll discuss that in some detail in a week or so, when I do my annual “please donate” article.
You know, ah, that’s a good point, but look….. your search for perfection is going to drive you crazy. Focus on the substance.
The market action today is nonsensical.
Tail risks abound – contested election, divided government, small or no stimulus, expanded shut downs due to Covid, stall in labor market…and so on.
Fed has buggered up all price discovery.
But it will come…It has too!
[In a Dana Carvey voice] “Read my lips, Ain’t gonna happen, ain’t gonna happen”. The Ministry of Extend and Pretend invites you to a recital of the beloved tune Brazil where we will display a thousand points of light on the ceiling. The Zentropa Sleeping Car Company wishes you a good night of sleep in our cars on your way.
It’d better be proven nonsensical over coming days, Skara, as I took up just about every bet that occurred to me against equities broadly (and particularly against financial stocks) today, as I saw everything rocketing higher….
Otherwise my face will soon be egg-covered.
Divided government is perfect. Nothing gets done. Just stand back and watch the Fed do its thing. It’s worked for a decade plus.
You ever noticed they can come together pretty quickly to spend money. They have achieved a politician’s dream, that the world is now dependent on them spending money. We know they are going to spend us into financial collapse.
Both Warfare and WElfare parties just LOVE deficit spending.
Without deficit spending. no POLTICIAN of any stripe or color can promise his vested interests ‘goodies’ of any kind, all of course at a cost to TAXPAYERS!
If one elects to vote for a candidate of ANY party, with his/her votes in the Congress?senate favoring PRIVATE interests over the PUBLIC ( main street) interests, there is no one to blame but one’s self!
The entire “elected” govt on both sides of the political party system is corrupted af and does not care about the people it claims to represent. The American political system has mutated into a subservient organ to the billionaire class on all sides, for a cut of the proceeds of course. Strict neutrality is the only viable option going forward to those who are genuinely sick and tired of the seemingly out-in-the-open corruption on both sides.
The U.S. democracy has been hijacked long ago, but now it’s apparent to everyone.
At least in China they’re honest about it. And it seems to be working out better for them. In the end, it’s only the economic success that matters.
American democracy is just oligarchy buying the illusion. We’re sliding into a version of Mexico.
Honest about being corrupted? I’ll have to try to wrap my brain around that concept someday. :-))
Sweet Meteor of Death 2020.
Neither party remotely cares about the future of the country, only dragging their own worthless, rotting husks through the next election cycle.
Point well made sir!
Floridians voting by almost 2-1 for an increase in their minimum wage is bullish for stocks. Right?
Considering they vote for small gov advocated by Republicans. It reminds me of the red state support on ACA vote for GOP. Isn’t that what shooting your own feet looks like?
“Considering they vote for small gov advocated by Republicans. ”
Republicans do not advocate for small government. You have bought “The Narrative”. As they said decades ago: Democrats are tax and spend; Republicans are borrow and spend. Choose your poison.
Phased in over six years, a real incentive for automation.
It’s all so upside down. Interest rates at 5000 year lows. Fiat money spewed from central banks at a furious rate everytime the economy sneezes. Oh my fiat does not buy much any more. I will vote myself a raise. Politicians must be laughing their rears off. Let’s make the math easy and get her done and say minimum wage is $100 per hour and get the collapse over with.
” Let’s make the math easy and get her done and say minimum wage is $100 per hour and get the collapse over with.”
I say a million dollars and hour. Then we will all be millionaires and have to work only 1 hour a year.
My short stint as a stock “analyst” back in 1999 taught me one good lesson. It doesn’t matter what story you are telling, but you absolutely must tell a story. Any story will do. People want to be told stories.
(How the word narrative became the word of choice for stories is a way too complicated history to get into here.)
This is in no way a criticism of Wolf or this site. Indeed, I’ve loved this site ever since I first stumbled upon it, any day now will be pulling the trigger on a beer mug donation. Thanks Wolf for all you do.
Actually, Wolf, what you need to do is resell gold/silver/bitcoin/diamonds/cigarettes/cans of mackerel/etc (basically any USD substitute) here.
You can’t trade beer mugs for food in a post-dollar apocalyptic wasteland.
I can easily imagine a situation where Wolf’s beer mugs are worth more than gold. Stock up now!
They stopped mining those beer mugs. What’s above ground right now is all there is ?
Collector’s item… woohooo
Something just seems off, I guess it will take riots on the streets to get the market to pay any attention.
Ha, or may be the crash will come when the results are in… you know. Buy the rumor, sell the news type of deal.
Riots bullish for SWBI ?
Five more states legalize cannabis. Tesla still trading around 420.
I couldn’t resist picking up a Dec QQQ 282 put this morning. QQQ up 5% on nothing but uncertainty.
How can states with much more population have their counts in but Michigan and Wisconsin not? As the Empire crumbles the rotting core becomes apparent. Illinois is the locus.
Because the GOP state legislatures in those states prevented counting them until today. Other states allow pre-canvassing – when the ballots arrive they are validated and counted but not reported until poll closing.
Nah, it’s nothing nefarious, the whole point here is all about creating drama and getting eyeballs on the screen.
It’s riveting television, there is probably a secret agreement somewhere with the battleground states where the networks receive kickbacks the longer the state drags out the count. Of course, this only applies to battleground states, otherwise it defeats the purpose.
The longer this drags out with “breaking news on the election” the better. As for who is elected, nobody cares, jackasses and dumbos, what’s the difference.
MCH, almost everybody cares about who wins this presidency.
Or if by “nobody cares” you mean it doesn’t matter, then I agree in the long term, the trajectory we are on is not particularly affected by who is president. But short term, one half of the population gets to be frustrated on a daily basis and no one wants to be in that half.
brilliant. thank you
Yes, but consider this, half the people are always dissatisfied about something. But the fact that the driving force behind it is politics feels just utterly stupid.
But realistically, the only thing that seems to matter is the ratings. I am sure if this devolves down to the Supreme Court or some such thing, it’s even more entertaining for the people. Imagine if this was then punctuated by riots and unrest, it will be a dream come true for the networks, the only thing that would be better is if the contenders got in the ring for a tag team mud wrestling match. I am sure there are people who would find that hilariously entertaining.
Yes, this is essentially what I think of the state of politics in the US egged on by the morons in the media.
I tore up my ballot and threw it out in the garbage, but not because I don’t care.
it depends on where you are. I just refused to vote for either of the ones on the top of the ticket, I don’t want to pick between bad and worse. When it’s suicide by shotgun or suicide by grenade, what’s the difference?
But there were plenty of CA props that was interesting to me. I voted on all of them, and most came in the way I liked. Actually, I think only one didn’t work out, so I’m happy.
Yes, voting matters, but only relatively, no one in their right mind believes that a Dumbo presidential candidate of any stripe would have a snowball’s chance in hell. Why would someone want to even waste the ink.
I read if Biden wins Mcconnell will be stingy with stimulus. That will put more pressure on Fed to keep things reflated. Eventually Biden gets to select Fed head. Wonlder if he will put a MMTer in as Fed chief?
I wouldn’t watch that play out on MSM if you paid me. Talk about self-torture.
What really depresses me is the complete lack of credibility of nearly every institution in this country from the media, to the government, and the so called free markets. It is all just a lie and a scam. It is not possible to believe in anything anymore.
The media conjecture and polling for this election have been massively incorrect yet again. Trump was polling down 10% but will likely lose the popular vote by 1%. Trump will lose, but it is very close, much closer than predicted.
Where are the media people who made such incorrect projections just days ago? And the Senate will stay Republican, and the House appears to have become more Republican. Remember the supposed blue wave?
This is a massive failure on the part of the media and polling elites.
Haha predicting what a hundred million people will do ahead of time and only getting it right to within +/- 4% is “a massive failure”. That’s funny.
The national polls suggested a 10% margin and a landslide. It’s about 2%. That’s not 4% +/- it’s 8%, and the degree of confidence from all sources (except 538) was very high. This is two Presidential elections in a row that the pollsters and media have completely botched. In any other business there would be some introspection, but I am not seeing much of that.
It really does not matter what the people do. Votes, money, stock markets, housing markets are all manufactured. It is all fake.
Consider this, do you believe everything that our glorious mainstream media feeds you?
That’s the question I would ask myself in your position. The fact that you come here for info suggests a certain answer.
The media in this country is biased, the news are more opinion columns, there are only very few journalists I respect. Hence, my common refrain of getting the news from SCMP, at least they aren’t providing full on opinions
I’ve been saying (to no one, because nobody cares what I think) for months that every Trump poll number was low by 5-10 points. If a pollster that you didn’t know asked you if you were voting for Trump, would you answer?
Just like four years ago, I suspect there was a lot of “voting while holding your nose.”
It’s not a bug, it’s a feature.
There is a theory that the entitled classes get to be wrong without paying the price. The mainstream media just keeps digging a deeper hole. People generally understand they are telling a narrative and not Joe Friday just the facts.
Who openly admits to pollsters they are voting for Trump?
That is where that 9% went…
Shame on the DNC for trying to pander to the lowest common denominator (the mythical moderate gop voter)…
While Student Debt relief, Pandemic Support, Public Option Healthcare, and UBI all poll above 70% approval.
This could have been a blue tidal wave… But Pelosi and the DNC do not believe it is possible to win without kowtowing to Wall st. and the Billionaire class.
I feel like I’m living in an alternate reality. Thank god for legalization.
Shouldn’t this have been the worse case scenario? I know people were talking about it but I just figured this is the USA. Cooler heads will prevail. There is still a modicum of intelligence out there. But no we will have a disputed election and the stock market is on the rise…
A while ago I quoted the dialog at the end of Three Days of the Condor, and it seems appropriate to quote it once more.
Joubert: Well, the fact is, what I do is not a bad occupation. Someone is always willing to pay.
Joe Turner or ‘Condor’: I would find it … tiring.
Joubert: Oh,no – it’s quite restful. It’s almost peaceful. No need to believe in either side, or any side. There is no cause. There’s only yourself. The belief is in your own precision.
Jdog, believe in yourself and those around you.
P.S. Lisa_Hooker was right, they did not publish it.
Oh, I believe in myself…. Those around me? I learned a long time ago that most of humanity are scoundrels, and nothing I have seen since then has changed my mind….
I don’t look at it that way. Most people do what’s in their best interest. This is where government can help by giving people incentives to be good citizens such as incentavizing work, education and savings.
we can believe in Wolf!!!
I’m thinking all asset prices are much more influenced by global persons and interests than US persons- even the US stocks etc. Americans may or may not be stupid, but the majority of us are definitely jaded, cynical and suspicious.
I doubt MCConnell and the Senate put up much of a fight. Senators will get pork for their states and enrich themselves and “grudeingly” vote along with Democrats on give-aways. The USD has yet to reflect the reality of the election results.
This is NOT what happened after the legislature changed hands in 2010, the Senate will not agree to a massive stimulus that funds state and local governments to an excessive degree.
I think this electoral outcome is actually the best possible, D win for Pres, R win for Senate. Perfect!
A split government is a GOOD thing for stocks. Neither side can pass their more obnoxious, less well-advised, more ideological nonsense.
Also, the election went far more smoothly than expected, even if the results are not immediately apparent. The National Guard deployed to major cities to quell possible unrest have not had a lot to do. Many holders who were shorting on the idea that the country would fall into turmoil after the election – hardly an uncommon thesis – are now covering their shorts.
The market likes peace. Calm. Consistency. Predictability. And there’s no better recipe for calm, consistency, and predictability than a government where both sides have to negotiate and compromise to get anything done.
Both sides might want to take credit for the market rising because of the positive outcomes for their side, but they’re both wrong. It is precisely because both sides will have significant representation that is the cause for this optimism.
Agree on split government, ideal market outcome.
Yes, if ideological nonsense was the only risk to stocks. But the last few months have had major rallies based on “stimulus hopes.” Now it’s pretty clear that no major stimulus will be forthcoming.
Portland Antifa is rioting again tonight over some perceived slight, but Kate Brown sent in the national guard this time (why not all the other 100+ times?). I suppose they have no more use for the useful idiots around here in post-election Portland.
One good thing came out of it- the Antifa candidate for mayor Sarah I., lost to Ted Wheeler. But drug rehab is now the sole responsibility of Oregon tax payers per the passing of measure 110. It’ll be interesting to see how that works.
NO agreement on stimulus either, while Covid is flaring up all over, No checks in the mail, increasing unemployment, ending of motatorium on rents++
Wait and see1
I kind of like the concept of government paralysis. Every time they change the rules businesses have to waste time and money adjusting to the new scenario. And the new scenario is rarely good for the middle class, which might freeze to death in cold weather due to being so regularly sheared.
In my own business sphere Obamacare has probably been the biggest government disaster. They talk about how many people now have health insurance but fail to mention most doctors won’t see patients who bought their policy on the exchange. I won’t. The reimbursement for an Obamacare policy is about what Medicaid pays, which is a pittance. My daughter bought a gold plan on the exchange. When she needed medical care there exactly ONE clinic that accepted her insurance.
Before I went on Medicare I had a bronze HMO with BCBS, bought privately, not on the exchange. The deductible was $6,000 and my premium was about $950/month. Just for giggles I did a search for pain specialists in Houston who accepted my insurance. Only one hit, and it wasn’t my practice, plus I had never heard of the guy despite being here over 20 years.
They also urged health care entities to switch to electronic records, promising that the initial outlay would be reimbursed. Later on, they introduced “meaningful use” which required documentation that they really were using EHR. The documentation required was so insane that some practices hired consultants to walk them through it. I think maybe 20% of practices qualified for reimbursement.
I’m still using paper records. I didn’t blow money on EHR which not only turned into a screw job for the doctors but also decreases productivity by about 20%.
“I’m from the government and I’m here to help”.
Obamacare is the result of half-measures forced by the GOP who would not allow a better system.
I have lived in countries like New Zealand that have nationlized health care. My ex-wife was a doctor there after working in the USA. Doctors get more respect and like their job better in New Zealand. They don’t have to spend half their time fighting with/justifying their actions with insurance companies. Everyone has the same goals – from government to doctors to patients (a bit of an overstatement, but contrast with the USA that pits doctors and patients against insurance companies).
“Obamacare is the result of half-measures forced by the GOP who would not allow a better system.”
Now how in the world were they able to do that?
The democrats were in charge of the US House and the US Senate.
The President was a Democrat.
President Obama was a conservative donkey.
Google it, ACA was a Rip off of Romney’s plan.
Obama was a gift to the GOP. He kept playing Charlie Brown to their Lucy.
Obama was obsessed with finding bi-partisan support from people who were making their bones on opposing anything he did on general principal.
Since we are talking politics, I will be very brief and mention just two differences between the US and the rest of the English- speaking world. In 1790 the UK still had a very powerful, entrenched Upper House, the Lords. It no longer does, having evolved past the point of fearing a French 1789 revolutionary mob. The Lords are advisory only.
But let’s say the desirability of an Upper House with 6 year terms instead of the mere two years for the lowly Representatives is debatable.
Second point: all countries are concerned that there be ‘continuity of government’, but Americans more so.
No where else do those words crop up as often.
So WHY is there this bizarre 77 day transition period between the election and the inauguration of the next president? The president commands the Armed Forces but any such transition period in the Armed Forces itself is unthinkable, as of course it is also also in business. If a commander is in charge, but is due to be replaced in 2.5 months, you obviously don’t have continuity of command, because it would be inappropriate for him to take a decision that binds his successor. (In actual emergency war situations the former commander may be called upon to advise the incumbent but this is unusual, and they are on the same side)
This transition limbo looks like a good time for an adversary to try a quick grab, while hoping for decision paralysis in their adversary.
What a strange thing to focus on.
What would you do if you were elected president and had 77 days before being inaugurated?
Would you maybe spend your time planning and coordinating with existing agencies so that the transition could be smooth and that you wouldn’t have to waste time figuring out what you’re going to do once you were sworn in because you already had 77 days to plan/act on that?
Yeah you would. And in fact, that’s what incoming presidents do.
Also, I suspect there is some time built into the process to ensure that any shenanigans like that in ’00 can be worked out.
Trump refused to transition from Obama.
He assigned Christie the task… Then fired him, killing the transition.
Trump literally set the executive branch back DECADES by not filling hundreds of leadership positions and failing to transition.
You can see the evidence in the 230k+ and counting corpses from the Executives cluster fark of a response to COVID.
Government doesn’t work… brought to you by the party that underfunds it and breaks it on purpose… The GOP.
Think it has to do with how far you can travel in a day on horseback while while consuming nothing but hardtack and coffee.
No doubt. Nothing happened fast in 1800. The Battle of New Orleans happened a month after the war was over, the peace treaty being signed in Paris. There were also no time zones, there being no ability to communicate in the ‘now’ between 2 points far apart enough to make different solar time.
As for the incoming Pres ‘planning’ the transition the last one was the most disorganized in modern history, with the new Pres not knowing that in addition to cabinet there were 4000 political appointments to be filled.
What happened was this. Powell told the PPT to start buying today because he thought there would be riots. In such a scenario, the indexes would probably be down only a bit, but instead riots failed to materialize and the indexes overshoot.
Yeah, but no stimulus.
Opinion on what a Biden win means for housing prices? JPOW gets replaced. Interest rates up or held low?
You go from abject speculation to definite conclusion (although stated in reverse order). Not compelling.
Nothing means anything any more. Only thing to do is relax and lean into it.
MarMar: I’m in my late 70’s. Myself and three other old gents played golf today during an absolutely gorgeous sunny and low humidity day here in Texas. Someone will be President soon and it won’t matter to us, or most commoners for that matter.
“They” at the top don’t care on lick about us. It’s all about their power and money grab.
I’m glad you had a nice day on the golf course and can afford nonchalance. Those of us with a little longer on this Earth would like to have some pleasant days during our retirement, but if the planet keeps heating up that is going to be increasingly rarer.
If you believe in global warming, you are destined to be a “mark” and gullible for every scam that comes your way….
If you think your vote for a president or Congress or anything else will measurably reflect the earth’s atmospheric temperature, you are incredibly naive.
On the facts, the science is clear, as is, increasingly, the evidence before our very eyes.
On the policy options, large majorities (including a majority of Republican voters) want to see more clean energy deployed. By and large it’s been Republican politicians holding that back.
So, yes, elections matter.
Every time there is a power failure someone dies from CO when they try to heat the house with their BBQ. People who don’t realize that 200 years of burning fossil fuel also has an effect on the atmosphere are in the same vein and you can also be pretty sure they have a thin knowledge of basic science generally.
PS: after decades of trying, the E to W first passage of the Arctic was made in 1934. It was made an RCMP boat the St. Roche, of very short length so it could reverse out of countless false leads.
Today you can take a cruise thru it and a bulk ore carrier has done it.
MarMar, Anthony is telling you he doesn’t need to care because he doesn’t have much time left on planet Earth. lol.
You see, that’s the problem with the human condition.
Although lifespan has improved significantly over the last century but still its at best 3 score & 7 seven years give or take?
Hence, most everyone just consume & grab what they can while young, screw & reproduce as much as they can while screwing the rest of the little people or the economy & finally hope to be able to play golf in their 70s like Anthony does. Environment? Whats that? Where’s did my golf ball land?
And then, their children & grand-children in turn goes through the same whole 9 yards, since no one is around long enough to really bother about the far future or the consequences of their current decisions, even when it impacts their own immediate descendants.
They will say: My time is over, let the next generation do what they need….. *very silent whisper – to face the problems that I had contributed to. snigger*
There used to be a concept that you lived your life as example and didn’t criticise others. Anyone that wants to live carbon neutral can set that as a goal and try to do it. If it costs a little more, it’s your money. Why do you want big brother to force you to do it? Obviously Bloomberg doesn’t want to lead by example.
@MarMar – Don’t fret yourself. If you’re younger in all probability you won’t have a retirement unless you’ve inherited sufficient means.
Old School, I actually do quite a bit toward that end, but individual action can only do so much. Tackling our greenhouse gas emissions is a collective action problem, which is why right-wingers hate it so much, to the point that they pretend that there isn’t a problem while things actively deteriorate around them.
I think the war stocks will do fine either way. There are two things that both Republicans and Democrats agree upon:
1) Our political system is broken.
2) Our political system must be imposed on other countries by force.
Normally this would apply, but the current admin has been winding down wars and has not added to the war portfolio. Ironically, probably did more in that regard this his predecessor, the Nobel Peace Prize winner…
1) SPX daily since Sept 2 high.
2) Draw x2 horizontal lines on Sept 3 high end big red : on it’s
open and it’s close.
3) The red bars and the red volume on the left are larger and higher than the ones on the right. Volume accumulation on the left is above the right.
4) Oct 12(H) was stopped by Sept 3 open. // Today close was stopped by Sept 3 close.
5) Between Oct 19 & 23 there was an attempt to move higher, above
Sept 3 (O), but it was a thud.
6) A Bullish Divergence (Oct 28/30) sent SPX higher.
7) Today bar left behind a large selling tail, an upthrust, and closed under
Sept 3(C). It’s not a good sign.
7) Election results are a 1: 1 tie decided by a coin toss, by x9 refs.
8) It looks likely that Oct 12(H) and today high are the first and the second opportunities to adjust, before supply bars will be in charge.
Hopium is the cheapest stimulus available in the market. 0 cents a pack.
Forget the state mandated tax on that pack?
Anything times zero is zero.
What’s really tuff to absorb is that in prior times of economic chaos, like the Tulip Bubble or more recently, The Great Financial Crisis, or even the first few days of Covid-19, is buying into the new-conceptual theory that risk doesn’t matter, it doesn’t matter at all.
One can extrapolate new-age thinking to envision that a nuclear war or blast is a buying opportunity, after all, most cities around the globe destroyed by war and acts of destruction rebuild and adapt. Thus, if we embrace zero rates and zero risk for stocks, we can do the same for insurance policies, visits to casinos or other traditional ways, where people have lost bets in the past. If there is no path to failure and if everyone is a winner, then surely nothing but good times are ahead.
As usual, finding future buyers for tulips that are more and more expensive is a small matter that will simply take care of itself.
Pre-election, either a Republican win or a democratic win had been spun as positive for the stock market. Now, it’s the split government narrative. There really is little philosophical difference between the two parties. I watched Biden/Obama do nothing for the general population for 8 years. He just talked a lot. Biden is the new ‘hope/change’ candidate and he’ll actually be just as bad as Obama. The market sees a Biden win, so the trade war is off and we can go back to completely selling out American workers again and of course there are the obligatory middle eastern wars. (good for oil prices)
There will be no green energy plan by Biden because he really stands for nothing. (these men are nihilists Donny). The only thing you can be sure of with a Biden win is that Amtrak won’t be cut.
The correct narrative for US stocks: US Follows path of Weimar republic, Venezuela, Zimbabwe etc. US Stock indexes in the national currency go up faster and faster, until trading is suspended. That is all.
That is definitely a possibility, but you can’t be the farm on that outcome.
Here is a little scenario. If you earned your money at one wage and interest on savings is zero. What is the affect of mandating an ever higher minimum wage? It is in affect reducing the purchasing power of your savings in the future. So many games that we play. As long as you have choices you are OK. Once you are forced into an economic choice, you are screwed.
The stories are useful. Today was a short covering day, which means the sellers may be out tomorrow. Everyone including the Fed was terrified that the market might react to political uncertainty with a selloff. Players see money coming into the market and step in front of the buy orders. Then the Fed says “out of ammo” which means the immediate crisis is over. Nobody has said the word “recession” in a long time. The only way they like to talk about a recession is in the past tense. Boy that was a tough recession. Should Fed decide the stimulus was enough, mentioning the “R” word even in passing, means they are dusting off the tools, and the market will like that. Powell might make an aside about enough liquidity to see us through. Stimulus or no they are going back to work.
Mr. Powell cannot print JOBS or worthy creditors to invest in productive economy producing living wage jobs!
Their tools are the same, wornout and progressively less effective!
Covid is here to stay and get worse by March. Pro Trump folks won’t follow any safety health practices!
Mkt cap to GDP over 220% a record!
We will print some impressive GDP rates in the next few years, the economy has reset to a level maybe ten to twenty years earlier. Then we front loaded the expansion. It’s all good. New industries in public security for infectious disease remediation, cyber threats. Phone apps do case tracking, link you to other phone GPS tell you if the person next to you is safe. Big Brother RIP. People in the midwest running around naked self flaggelating, but who cares?
This is my problem. Stocks have become a gambling market instead of share ownership.
I am thankful that I worked on the inside to at least know what you try to do by making decisions on projects that will give you attractive rates of return. It by nature is a long term process not much related to stock trading on the latest minute stock chart.
Nov. 5th buyers are out!
My in laws lived next to a crazy neighbour lady. The old lady’s daughter died and it got really bad for a few weeks because no one was keeping an eye on her. Finally, the old lady’s son in law happened to stop by and called the RCMP in to bring a rubber ambulance that hauled her away. True story.
I wonder if Canada and Mexico can get together and do the same thing?
Plus, in the comments up above someone openly disputed the facts of global warming, about Texas no less. The other day a libertarian was arguing about masks and whether the virus was even an issue?
Can’t make this stuff up. Good luck all. That is my narrative. Good luck and cross your fingers…… Crazytown. Why would anyone think the stock market might act sane?
It’s just as crazy for a person to think that their vote in any election will affect climate change FYI, I wouldn’t be so selective on your pointing out erroneous thinking. That’s just as I’ll informed.
You might consider the information Peter Temple supplies re GW, etc., in the linked presentation. Seems pretty solid to me, as does the information Crichton supplies, especially the bibliography in his novel, ”State of Fear.”
Might not work out so well for BC, but we stuck in FL might be in luck this time…LOL
“In this best of all possible worlds, everything is for the best.” -Candide
For our elite thieves, who have access to free money beyond imagination, these are quite clearly the best of times. They are a protected class. They are protected from their own failures, and they are protected from those from whom they steal.
It is impossible to introduce into society a greater change and a greater evil than this: the conversion of the law into an instrument of plunder. -Bastiat
It’s not that we fail to learn from history. The greedy don’t care about it.
Wall$treet is not a weathervane, Wolf. Tis nothing of the sort. Whatever it was, is no longer .. It doesn’t predict. It doesn’t devine. It has simply become a VIRUS in need of a cure. That goes for all the other supposed ‘market’ vifi attached to all the other major globull unnerved centers scattered around the Terran host … with the Central Banks a metastasized CANCER!!!!!
Mankind figured out early on that a market determined price was a foundation to a prosperous society. It was so important that the Fed determined that it couldn’t be left to the riff raff down below. They might mess things up.
J-Pow will most likely not pump the market this week, as that would look political. Biden will not pump the markets daily for 4 years, something the street has not discounted yet. The new Treasury Secretary will not be “making a phone call” every time the market is down 2%, something the street is ignoring. The Fed will not be pushed to pump wall street by Biden. The economic barometer will not naively be judged and promoted by the market index daily levels over the next 4 years. A lot of psychological support is going to be removed from market euphoria and animal spirits emotional nonsense…yet I’m sure Wall Street will dream up more stories to promote fees and profits.
Blue President/Red Senate is going to be an utter mess over the next 2 years, yet Senate could go Blue at mid-term elections so plan taxes, etc accordingly.
Search Youtube for “Mitch McConnell: Top Priority, Make Obama a One Term President”. I posted a link last week (blocked due to being political though not my intent). Mitch will likely repeat with maximum oppositional policy to make Biden a single term president (which is amusing as Biden said he would only run 1 term as who wants to be president at age 86???). I’d suggest 8 year, single terms so this sort of narcissistic destructive behavior becomes less common. Leading with self-individualism preservation as the main goal…that is not a very healthy democracy…
On a side note, the futures ripped 104 points overnight in 32 minutes when Florida went Red. That logic is suspect. This is a dangerous market. A $100,000 short position on E-mini futures would have lost $50,000 in 32 minutes. Minute candles moved 15 points at times with huge orders, it was beyond insane. This market is dominated by computer algorithms, and humans need a dose of luck to compete with any consistency. Beware of future volatility ahead. Logical people can lose a lot of money as the markets are anything but logical. My biggest gain last night was SHORTING the vix, as a hedge to lean into the craziness (went the opposite of logic, not an easy short). It cancelled my Naz short (“logical” blue wave short) so I gained nothing, yet it all has entertainment value, and it was exciting. Wall Street gambling is no different than trips to Vegas. Wall Street is the “New Vegas”…
Futures numbers are unreliable until ‘CASH’ mkt open in the morning!
Unfortunately WS doesn’t offer free drinks or comp rooms.
1. Mr Trump will be the LAST Republican President in the USA for years and years, and years. Demographics will make it so.
2. The Rule of Law in the USA is dead which means that everything the USA was built on is dead as well.
3. The US dollar is toast and will fall in value over the near future as people OUTSIDE the USA understand what a Biden, actually, Harris Presidency means.
4. US asset values will fall over the next four years. A totally opposite reaction to when the current President took office
I don’t agree the dollar will fall in value. If asset values fall, that would most likely increase the value of the dollar: Fewer dollars buy more assets. I believe that was frequently the case when we were all on the ‘gold standard.’ Lack of gold production boosted dollar value. We have been in a debt/deflationary environment, asset prices being an exception for the time being. And those prices may be artificially propped up by debt. It’s a mash up.
Sure it will with unlimted QE and continued US government deficits as well as foreigners finally waking up to the fact that none of those will ever be brought under control with the future make up of US governments.
IMO in four years time the US dollar will have lost at least 15% if not more of its value.
Even more against the Yen.
Even now the pathetic Australian dollar is making gains against despite the central bank here going on in on QE, reducing rates to 0.1%, and CHina banning Australian exports.
(Do you think that a Biden Presidency could give a hoot about what happens to Australia?)
Of all our big export markets only iron ore is holding up in price and volume. And soon that will be hit with Brazil coming online and a huge Chinese backed project in Africa will begin to export ore in the near future.
Our two biggest service ‘exports’ are dead: tourism and education.
No international travel expected for another year which means no tourists and no international students.
And finally the biggest factor in GDP growth is missing: immigrants. No population growth, but population decline.
And even with all those negatives, the Australian Dollar is still going up in value which means the US Dollar is toast.
Yeh, Investors: Apart fom who is going to be prez, race in Senate is tight and GOP ‘might’ retain the majority at this point. Stimulus will be around 1 trillion and NOT 3 T like Dems dreamed off!
Covid 19 is still here with more hospitalizations in FL, OH++
Tomorrow unemployment benefits claim number!?
On Friday Unemployment # for Oct!?
FED cannot print jobs. Using QEs has been progressively less effective.
10y yield dropped 14 basis pts in a day from 0.881 to 0.741
REALITY is more pessimistic than what the Mkt indexes indicate!
Soon the only thing it takes to scare the market would be a civil war, or perhaps that’s good too? And if would be funny if ever the narrative turns around advocating how good a civil war would be for the US economy… lol these liars have no shame.
Undertakers/funeral directors could pivot to doing things the modern way. Hire gig workers, no brick and mortar location needed, just do delivery -outcalls only (they embalm right there in your driveway so as to keep the social distancing) and of course provide videocast funerals as an upgrade for premium members. And pre-written death notices published across all platforms with the just one click. How convenient! Just think of the advertising and personal data selling on the app they will make you use. I see an IPO of something like WE-DIE. That’s got to be good for a few percentage points on the indexes.
Semi-trailer mobile crematoria?
Gridlock would be a favorable outcome for the stock market and internally for the country. Investors would not have to worry about greatly increased taxes on capital gains and dividends. The prospect of an enormous multi-trillion dollar fiscal stimulus would be somewhat reduced. Politically, it would be difficult to pack the Supreme Court, to add DC and Puerto Rico as states, and to initiate at the federal level voting rights for illegal aliens. Some of the insanity coming from the extreme left would be curbed. Unknown at this time are the external policy questions that many would view favorably: reinstituting the JCPOA with Iran, extending START with Russia, environmental initiatives, fewer tariffs and sanctions, acceptance of Nord Stream II, and others. I wouldn’t mind a less aggressive, less hegemonistic foreign policy in general, but that’s too much to hope for. Serious FP discussions stop at the water’s edge.
With this logic, governments should be in gridlock ad vitam æternam.
One narrative is 100% clear from this election:
Mainstream media polls are utterly worthless.
On par with global warming models.
Ha! I received an email from broker saying uncertainty was good for market just yesterday. I refrained from sending him back his email from a few weeks earlier that said that Biden’s lead was a good thing for market.
Instead, I suggested that anything was ‘good for the market. up up and away’.
I really enjoy this place. thank you, Wolf for all the effort, including the occasional reply to commenters. Can’t be easy.
How’s this narrative sound? At a growth rate of 3% per annum, GDP will double every 23.45 years. Unless its all just price inflation, to think this can continue is an insane narrative. Where’s my tin foil hat?
The stock market was happy as long as Kanye West did not get elected.
Jeff Bezos has sold another 3 billion of AMZN stock. Suckers lapped them up.
Over the course of the year he’s sold 10 billion plus.
Changing narratives always interpreted as bullish for stocks is the definition of a bull market. If I remember well Michael Steinhardt said so.
Neither of the two old fools will be deviating from pouring gasoline -$$$- on the altar- market- once elected.
The market can see through this BS and acts accordingly.
‘These narratives are funny. They change and adapt constantly, like a weather vane. Major investment banks come out with reports to create and support these narratives,..’
Bad news is good
Good news is better
NO news is way better!?
Matters little, stocks keep climbing. b/c FED;s put is always there, He told this again today! Covid 19 will remain a challenge b/c Fed cannot print JOBS!
GRIDLOCK is good!?
The Social Dilemma: has anyone watched it.
Where they tell us that we are putty in their hands.
They: THE GODS OF THE UNIVERSE .. WHO ELSE.
iT IS AN AD RIGHT ..
tO DRUM UP INVESTMENT RIGHT ..
What else could it be .. only the biggest egotistical brag to promote a failing industry ??