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Comments for the Week Beginning September 1, 2008

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 On Thursday evening, at 8:17 PM, MDST, in Denver, Colorado, Barack Obama accepted the nomination of the Democratic Party for the office of President of the United States. In accepting this nomination, he became the first person of color to be nominated for this position on one of the major parties in the USA. At that moment, Pluto was conjunct the Midheaven within only one degree, and on the Galactic Center. Uranus was in the twelfth house, three degrees from the Ascendant, while Venus was only four degrees above the Descendant (seventh house), in an almost exact square to Pluto. The ruling planet, Neptune, was in the twelfth house, in an applying opposition to the Moon in Leo near the cusp of the sixth house. This is a very powerful chart, with so many planets conjunct an angle. The positions of Uranus and Pluto illustrate the remarkable and historic nature of this event. But does it indicate success, or attainment of the goal, which is to become the president of the USA? With Pluto conjunct the Midheaven, and being retrograde and in square aspect to Venus and Mercury, I have doubts. The problem, as I see it from this chart, is also the Pisces rising and its ruler Neptune in the twelfth house. Although Pluto and Uranus pertain to his inspirational message of “change,” the Pisces-Neptune placements indicate the very difficulty that the pollsters have been pointing out all along. That is, the general public may not really feel they know or understand – or even trust - the man behind the powerful words. They are moved by the message, but they don’t quite get the messenger. Pluto on the MC, going retrograde, also suggests that something behind the scenes may be about to erupt that affects Senator Obama. He may be facing a very powerful machine whose intent is to harm his reputation and/or completely distort his message, for Pluto in such a vital place represents the possibility of sabotage. For those who are astrologers, note that the Pluto on the MC and Galactic Center, also rules the 8th house. Obama’s quest for the White House will certainly be accompanied by changes. If he succeeds, it will result in massive reforms and changes of direction for the USA. If he doesn’t succeed, it may be a result of forces that are terribly threatened by the changes and reforms he represents.

 The equity markets started slowly last week. Most indices fell sharply Monday and into early Tuesday, before recovering smartly into Thursday-Friday. In Europe, both the London FTSE and Switzerland SMI indices achieved multi-week highs on Friday. The AEX of Netherlands and DAX of Germany also posted their highs of the week on Friday, but they were below the highs of August 12 and 13. Australia’s All Ordinaries and Japan’s Nikkei also posted their highs of the week on Friday, with the All Ords at their highest level in nearly two months. The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell sharply on Monday, down over 200 points, but recovered the next morning and posted a weekly high on Thursday, which was up over 200 points. But then on Friday, the DJIA gave most of that back again, ahead of Hurricane Gustav’s projected path towards New Orleans, due to hit land early next week.

 Fears of Hurricane Gustav also caused a sharp rise in Crude Oil during the week. It was above 120.00 at times, but ended the week at 115.46. Gold and Silver were relatively strong too, but couldn’t quite break out enough to confirm the long-term cycle lows are in.

Short-Term Geocosmics

This weekend (August 30) finds the new moon in Virgo conjunct Saturn. The actual Sun-Saturn conjunction takes place on September 3. Normally this would imply a serious and even depressing time. However, Saturn is now moving towards its trine to Jupiter, so the Sun will also form a trine to the “Great Benefic.” Whereas Saturn restricts and represses, Jupiter expands and offers hope. The combination is said to be a moderation of both forces. Matters won’t get too exaggerated because Saturn is present. At the same time, matters won’t get too depressed either, because Jupiter is present. This combination can lead to good judgment and the passage of laws or agreements that result in favorable outcomes.

These are not the only signatures involving Jupiter in the next few days. In fact, there are several. On September 4, the Sun trines Jupiter. On September 7, Mars will square Jupiter and Jupiter will turn stationary direct. One day later, Jupiter will trine Saturn, the same day that Pluto turns stationary direct. The day after that, September 9, Venus will square Jupiter and two days later Venus and Mars will conjunct. With all of these Jupiter signatures, one might expect large price swings in many financial markets, especially those ruled by Jupiter, like Crude Oil. With Pluto also changing directions, there is a danger of great destruction in the next two weeks, perhaps from natural causes, like hurricanes. We also note that from September 3 through September 13, the Sun will translate as a T-square to the forthcoming Saturn-Uranus opposition. Such signatures can correspond to deadly hurricanes and winds, as well as sharp price movements in many financial markets, especially equities.

Longer-Term Thoughts

 As Mundane and Financial Astrologers, we tend to think of the forthcoming Saturn-Uranus opposition as a harbinger of great changes. Saturn is the planet of “The Establishment,” or “The status quo.” It is conservative by nature, and hence we tend to think it describes the Republican Party today, perhaps because the Republicans currently hold the White House, or perhaps because their platform over the past 28 years had been conservative, maybe even ultra conservative. We tend to think of the Democratic Party as Uranus in this set up, because they have laid claim to be being the party of change, the progressive party. Many professional astrologers believe that the Saturn-Uranus opposition portends change of the status quo, and therefore favors the election of the challenging party, which in this case is the Democratic Party headed by Scorpio Joe Biden and Leo Barack Obama. I am not so sure this is how these two planets will operate. I am not so sure that Uranus trumps Saturn when they come into aspect, and implies a change of party in power. I am certain that it means the populace is frustrated and upset and wants a change. We saw that in 1965-1966 when these two planets last made their opposition.

 If we go back and examine historical periods when Saturn and Uranus were in conjunction or opposition, we will see an interesting correlation. The last time these two planets were in such an aspect was 1988. They were conjunct. At that time, astrologers also believed there would be a change of parties in the White House, due to this signature. But instead of electing the Democratic challenger Michael Dukakis, who was far ahead in the polls within three months of the election, the American public switched their preference and elected Republican George Bush Sr, thus continuing the Republican reign of power. Of course, the discontent with Bush Sr led to his defeat in the next election. Before that, Saturn and Uranus were in opposition from October 1918 through June 1920. The 1920 election coincided with the near record surprising victory of Republican Warren Harding, which ended the Democratic reign of power in the White House. Before that was the Saturn Uranus conjunction of January 1897. The election of November 1896 found Republican William McKinley the victor, and again a change of leadership.

 Thus it appears that these two planets in major aspect may or may not correspond with a change of party in the office of Presidency. But so far, all instances had one thing in common: all victors were Republicans. I know my liberal friends will not like this, but to me, the astrological signatures point more to a McCain election than Obama one. What my liberal friends may like, however, is that the one election I missed was in 1988, the last Saturn-Uranus conjunction. Here comes the next one. Either a Republican wins, as has been the case in every instance over the past 110 years. Or I am wrong, as I was the one and only other time in the past 32 years I made a prediction during a Saturn-Uranus signature like this one. That incorrect forecast led me to change the way I astrologically analyze elections, so maybe I learned something. And certainly there is more for me to learn with this election, which offers the most striking difference in candidates that I have ever witnessed in my lifetime.



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February or March 2016: Raymond Merriman webinar on the outlook for financial markets, world economies, and possibly a look at the USA 2016 Presidential Election candidates. The exact date will be announced in about a month. The cost to participate will be $45.

March 10-13, 2017: Second MMA Investment Retreat, tentatively planned for Sedona, AZ. Details soon.

Disclaimer and statement of purpose:

The purpose of this column is not to predict the future movement of various financial markets. However, that is the purpose of the MMA (Merriman Market Analyst) subscription services. This column is not a subscription service. It is a free service, except in those cases where a fee may be assessed to cover the cost of translating this column from English into a non-English language.

This weekly report is written with the intent to educate the reader on the relationship between astrological factors and collective human activities as they are happening. In this regard, this report will oftentimes report what happened in various stock and financial markets throughout the world in the past week, and discuss that movement in light of the geocosmic signatures that were in effect. It will then identify the geocosmic factors that will be in effect in the next week, or even month, or even years, and the author’s understanding of how these signatures will likely affect human activity in the times to come. The author (Merriman) will do this from a perspective of a cycle’s analyst looking at the military, political, economic, and even financial markets of the world.

It is possible that some forecasts will be made based on these factors. However, the primary goal is to both educate and alert the reader as to the psychological climate we are in, from an astrological perspective. The hope is that it will help the reader understand these psychological dynamics that underlie (or coincide with) the news events and hence financial markets of the day.

No guarantee as to the accuracy of this report is being made here. Any decisions in financial markets are solely the responsibility of the reader, and neither the author nor the publishers assume any responsibility at all for those individual decisions. Reader should understand that futures and options trading are considered high risk.

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