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Random Thoughts: The Here is Now


Financial wagon continues to wobble.


Editor's Note: The following was posted in real time on our premium Buzz & Banter. It's being shared here for the benefit of the Minyanville community. See also The Great Expression, Victim or the Crime? and Random Thoughts: Straddling the Great Divide.

Great Moments are Born From Great Opportunities - 11:38 am

  • When push comes to shove, this hard press lower was a necessary evil IF the market is to rally. That doesn't mean it will, but it's a conditional element we need to see.

  • Pretty Sneaky Sis! While all eyes are on Goldman (GS) (-13%) and Morgan (MS) (-21%), State Street Bank (STT) is "quietly" down 20% as concerns continue to spread about the integrity of money market funds (among other things).

  • Perception is reality and psychology is paramount. This is precisely what we discussed last year when we drew attention to the writing on the wall.

  • It's not what is, it's what's perceived to be that matters. If folks freak about the liquidity of their money market funds, all bets are off (figuratively and literally). I urge Minyans to remain lucid, do your homework, read the fine print and be part of the solution rather than part of the problem.

  • We've been talking about the consumer non-durables (General Mills (GIS), Proctor & Gamble (PG), Campbell Soup (CPB)) since the beginning of the year and while I respect the price action (52-week highs), my gut sense is that the bears will sniff out all the hiding spots by the time they're done feasting. So it's said and so you know.

  • Watch this. Hear this. Be this. Today WE are the greatest community in the world. You were born to be Minyans. Every one of you.

Answers I Really Wanna Know... - 12:40 pm

  • Why does S&P 1080 continue to resonate in my crowded keppe when I can't find a technical reason for that rhyme?

  • While technical analysis has an asterisk next to it in this environment, don't the lower highs in the S&P tell us all we need to know with regard to the trend?

  • Is anyone else really tired of TV trucks following the wounded brokers around?

  • Despite the emergence of the new world order?

  • Don't they understand that these people are human?

  • With families to feed?

  • And most of them simply followed the marching orders from above?

  • Are you gonna look back in 5%--either way--and say "I knew it!"?

  • Are you operating from a position of risk management or reward chasing?

  • Will unforeseen derivative ripples continue to manifest from the Lehman (LEH) pebble?

  • How bout the AIG (AIG) boulder?

  • Holy cow, do you see State Street (STT) down 40%?

  • Has the dike officially sprung too many leaks for the fingers of intervention to plug?

  • Are we scared yet?

  • With the VXO at 42?

  • Will Goldman Sachs (GS) take itself private?

  • Stranger things have happened, right?

  • Actually, doesn't that sorta make sense?

  • Where specifically, is the weirdest place that you personally girls have ever gotten the urge to make whoopee?

  • Oh come on, now more than ever, doesn't a little levity go a long way?

This is Life, This is My House! - 1:09 pm

So how's your day?

As the wheels wobble on the financial wagon, fear has started to permeate throughout the world. It's well warranted--Bank of New York (BK) is off 30%, State Street (STT) is down 50%, Mother Morgan (MS) is taking a 33% haircut and Goldman (GS) is off 24%. Indeed, if we're to sell hope and buy despair, the air is thick with desperation.

So what to do? Through my admittedly tired eyes, there are two potential scenarios:

  • We're approaching a short-term trading low--which is drastically different than a market bottom--that will lead to a trading rally before the resumption of the credit cancer spreads. Remember, tomorrow is expiration and IF there are any bullets left in the gun, they're gonna spit fire them into tomorrow. And yes, it remains to be seen if they'll be real or rubber.

  • The levee is broken and we'll spill lower until a natural bottom is found. This would include a "truly" scary close, more pain tomorrow and all sorts of chatter in front of a Black Monday redeux. It's not what someone would "wish" for but it's most certainly possible. Indeed, through the lens of select financials, some would say the crash is already upon us.

Price discovery is a process rather than a point and if I knew the way, I would surely take you home. I'm certainly not smart enough to know--and anyone who says, with authority, that they do isn't to be trusted--so I will simply ask Minyans to see both sides and allow for all outcomes as we trudge through these truly trying times.

My grandfather always told me that "this too shall pass" and mark my words, this will as well. The onus is on us to adapt, remain lucid, stick together and find our way through this freaky fray. The greatest opportunities are born from the most profound obstacles and this is where true grit is required.

As always, I truly hope this finds you well.



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