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The World of What Matters Now


A new day brings a fresh stay.

This is some sloppy chop, eh? A snapshot of the S&P demonstrates that point in kind, akin to a modern day Charles Dickens novel. It's the best of tapes and the worst of tapes, depending of course whether you've been agile enough -- or interested in -- fading the prevalent short-term market moves.

While Friday's freaky symmetry stands out in my mind's eye, yesterday's rally was tied to traders "getting ahead" of Massachusetts election. We spied that early on the Buzz & Banter while noting at the irony of it all. While I understand the perceived implications for regulation and health care, I'm hard pressed to make the case that gridlock is "good."

Heck, I've been schooled to believe uncertainty is outright negative but perhaps those were simpler, truer days.

Be that as it may, perception is reality, the knee-jerk was higher and we enter our all-of-a-sudden Hump with a handful of questions rattling around our keppe. For instance:

  • While the specter of "fiscal responsibility" seemingly drove the tape higher, will that reality, should it come to pass, really bode well for the market? There are many words to describe public (and quasi-public) policy but "responsibility", given the current social mood, has to do with blame, not praise.

  • While the dollar rallied on the notion that the printing press may take a sabbatical, what will be the structural reaction to a stronger greenback? If we begin to factor in the percolating issues in the Euro (Greece, among others) and note the technically constructive double bottom followed by a higher low, we must resolve this question with a forward-looking lens.

  • If China is widely perceived to be the dog that wags the stateside tail, what will be the implications of their efforts to curb bank lending? In a proactive effort to stem speculative bubbles -- it's a novel approach, I know, but perhaps Washington can observe and learn -- they're cracking down on the massive lending spree and stepping up efforts to monitor their banks.

  • What are earnings telling us? Following a massive rally that began almost a full year ago, conventional wisdom dictates that the baton must be passed from the steady hand of the government to clammy paws of corporate America. We've seen crossed signals thus far; strong earnings from Intel (INTC) followed by not-good-enough news from JP Morgan (JPM); better guidance by IBM (IBM), followed by the reality check in Bank America (BAC) and Morgan Stanley (MS).
Remember Minyans, news that is good (but not great) is sold in an overbought market while news that is bad (but not horrible) is bought in an oversold tape. More important, and as you know, the reaction to the news will be entirely more important than the news itself.

Random Thoughts:

  • Societal acrimony? What societal acrimony?

  • While there wasn't a year on the street when I didn't fully believe I earned my keep, the entire financial compensatory curve needs to ratchet lower and/or restructure towards payment in kind. The current tax proposal doesn't address this; it effectively finances sinners by punishing winners.

  • There is a "Crash" coming on Friday and it has nothing to do with the markets. After almost two years, Phoebe will again have a partner in crime.

  • Twenty days into my "no alcohol, sweets or carbs" cleanse; I've lost eleven pounds and have 17 (much tougher) pounds to go. It hasn't been all that difficult; it's more a lifestyle shift than a diet and one that should last long beyond the initial month.

  • Does Renee Walker need to take anger management classes?

  • Does the Minnesota defense give them a slight edge against the high powered Saints at home?

  • Did Apple (AAPL) rally yesterday on Minyanville's positive coverage of the Tablet?

  • Think positive; look at what it did for Rex Ryan and the J-E-T-S!

  • Have you checked out our subscription products lately? There's something for everyone looking for a boost whether you're an active trader, trade options, invest with ETFs, are short-term or intermediate term. The best part is there's a free 2 week trial to all, so take a peek risk-free.

  • On a housekeeping notes -- relax Alice, I'm not talking to you -- I offer the following vibes:

    • MV Tees are a scant ten bucks!

    • Mini-Minyans are learning to earn in Minyanland; come one, come all-it's free and it's fantastic!

    • I'll be attending a conference tomorrow starting at midday, and I'll be at an out-of-city Friday morning meld before returning to the 'Ville. So you know and if you care; we're all about communication in the 'Ville!

  • Have a great day and remember you're a Minyan.

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