MMA FREE WEEKLY COLUMN FOR THE WEEK BEGINNING MARCH 1, 2021 ©

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So much for Jerome Powell’s reassurances. Only a day after the Federal Reserve Chairman’s two-day, nothing-to-worry-about turn of Capitol Hill, financial markets suddenly found plenty to worry about on Thursday. Stocks fell sharply as the 10-year Treasury Note yield had its largest one-day advance since November to its highest level in a year. – “The Markets and Mr. Powell,” Wall Street Journal Opinion page, February 26, 2021.

A wave of selling in U.S. government bonds intensified on Thursday, sending yields soaring after new data indicated a strengthening economic recovery…. Investors tend to sell Treasuries when they expect faster growth and inflation. If yields continue to rise, that could pressure stocks…” – Sebastian Pellejero and Sam Goldfarb, “Treasury Selloff Intensifies,” Wall Street Journal, February 26, 2021.

Mercury ended its retrograde cycle last weekend (January 30-February 20). Saturn completed the first of three passes in its 11.25-year quarter cycle to Uranus (also known as a waning square) on February 17. Almost all global stock markets peaked out within a week of those two cosmic events and fell hard by the end of last week.

This sudden trend reversal fits the dynamics of both geocosmic signatures. However, the synchronicity of retrograde and direct planetary stations like Mercury was described in detail last week as follows: Many financial markets, like stock indices, will often form a major or primary cycle (high or low) within three trading days of Mercury turning retrograde. These markets will often end that counter-trend move within three trading days of turning direct. We are there now, and from the lows of January 29, many stock indices are making new cycle or even longer-term highs as we enter this three-day trading time frame. Is this the top? Looking only at the Mercury retrograde cycle, an argument can be made for that possibility.  Continue reading…

MMA FREE WEEKLY COLUMN FOR THE WEEK BEGINNING FEBRUARY 22, 2021 ©

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How much debt is too much and when does it begin to have corrosive economic consequences? No one knows, but one economic benchmark for harm has been 90% of GDP…. Debt held by the public – the kind the government has to pay back – broke above 100% of the economy in 2020. Even without new Biden spending… We’d better hope renewed inflation doesn’t force the Fed’s hand as it did in the early 1950’s during the Korean War – and that the world keeps faith in the U.S. Dollar… But then the U.S. has never conducted a fiscal experiment like this one. The laws of economics haven’t been repealed, no matter what the modern-monetary theorists say. – “The Pandemic Spending Hangover,” Wall Street Journal Opinion page, February 13-14, 2021. 

According to reports, Ms. DeLauro and Senate Chairman Patrick Leahy will soon announce that earmarks are welcome in annual spending bills. A few English words to describe what’s returning: Pork. Logrolling. Sleaze. Bridges to nowhere… In reality, there could be no more dangerous moment in congressional history to reintroduce earmarking. Congress’s budget process is more dysfunctional than ever. – Kimberley A. Strassel, “Return of the Swamp Creatures,” Wall Street Journal, February 19, 2021.

Global equity markets began to run out of steam last week. So did the speed of Mercury’s movement as seen from the earth as it approaches the end of its retrograde cycle this weekend. Given that many equity markets made a major cycle bottom on Friday, January 29, the day before Mercury turned retrograde, it is no surprise that the rally might end close to the time it turns direct. Continue reading…

MMA FREE WEEKLY COLUMN FOR THE WEEK BEGINNING FEBRUARY 15, 2021 ©

Note. Markets are closed Monday for the Presidents’ Day holiday. 

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“Bitcoin is almost as bs as fiat money.” Elon Musk, who just purchased $1.5 billion of Bitcoin and drove the price up towards $50,000.

India’s government plans to introduce a bill in the country’s lower house that would ban private cryptocurrencies such as bitcoin and create a national cryptocurrency. – Abigail Johnson Hess, “India Might Ban Private Cryptocurrencies Like Bitcoin,” January 30, 2021, www.cnbc.com.

It may be Mercury retrograde, but the Trickster is showing no sign that the bull market in stocks or Bitcoin is letting up. Continue reading…

MMA FREE WEEKLY COLUMN FOR THE WEEK BEGINNING FEBRUARY 8, 2021 ©

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U.S. equity markets finished in record territory Friday after Congress paved the way for President Biden’s $1.9 trillion COVID-19 aid package and the jobs report showed a drop in the unemployment rate. Stocks rose despite a ho-hum jobs report with the addition of 49,000 jobs in January as the unemployment rate fell to 6.3%, according to the Labor Department. In Washington, the upper chamber of Congress early Friday morning voted 51-50, with Vice President Kamala Harris casting the tie-breaking vote, to adopt a budget resolution for coronavirus relief. Later on Friday, the measure was passed by the House. – Jonathan Garber, “S&P 500, NASDAQ Hit Records as Congress Nears $1.9T Coronavirus Relief,” www.foxbusiness.com, February 5, 2021. 

Like Punxsutawney Phil on Groundhog Day 2021, the “Trickster” – Mercury retrograde – was front and center last week. Punxsutawney Phil saw his shadow on Tuesday, February 2, and returned to his burrow in the ground and thus forecasting six more weeks of winter. The “Trickster” also began its reversal through the cosmos last weekend, on January 30. Just before Mercury’s backwardation began, world equity markets experienced their most bearish technical ending to a week in since late October. That bearish setup on Friday, January 29, was abruptly negated on Monday, February 1, as world stock indices and other financial markets quickly reversed and returned to their former trends. It was like Groundhog Day all over again, just one day ahead of schedule. Continue reading…

MMA FREE WEEKLY COLUMN FOR THE WEEK BEGINNING FEBRUARY 1, 2021 ©

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A surge of trading volume in shares of GameStop and AMC Entertainment, as well as Bed Bath & Beyond and BlackBerry, has stunned Wall Street firms that were betting that those stocks would fall. The share prices had instead spiked this week as retail investors, spurred by the online Reddit forum WallStreetBets, piled into the stocks. The volatility continued Wednesday as platforms like Robinhood and Interactive Brokers limited trading on certain stocks. Robinhood, which has billed itself as a democratizing force in the market, in particular took criticism. – Paul Connor, “GameStop, AMC Trading Frenzy Roils Wall Street,” www.foxbusiness.com, January 28, 2021.

Game on! GameStop! Robinhood! Wall Street hedge funds get ripped off?

It’s a classic case Saturn square Uranus, with the volatile, unpredictable Uranus in Taurus (the stock market) storming the gates of the establishment’s (Saturn) Wall Street professional hedgers, causing unimaginable and exaggerated price movements (Jupiter is involved too) in heavily shorted stocks. And the gate-stormers were winning! Well, they were winning until the rules (Saturn) were suddenly changed (Uranus) and the newbies (Uranus) were restricted from trading in these companies. So much for the concept of “free markets.” Intervention (a Plutonian dynamic) took over as Venus (money) was also conjunct with Pluto (liquidation and intervention). Continue reading…

MMA FREE WEEKLY COLUMN FOR THE WEEK BEGINNING JANUARY 25, 2021 ©

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Hopes for a robust earnings season from the largest communications and tech companies sparked a rally in mega-cap stocks during the holiday-shortened week, pushing the broader market higher (but)…. Investors reassessed the outlook for President Joe Biden’s ambitious COVID-19 stimulus plan. A growing number of Republicans have expressed doubts over the need for another stimulus bill, especially one with a price tag of $1.9 trillion proposed by Biden. Yun Li and Thomas Frank, “S&P 500 Slips from All-Time High, NASDAQ Ends Week Up 4% at a Record,” www.cnbc.com, January 22, 2021. 

In the week that finally saw the end of the Trump era and start of the Biden presidency in the United States, world equity markets rallied with several making new all-time or multi-year highs. Those nations that posted new all-time highs included the United States and India. Those that posted new multi-year highs included the Netherlands and China.

However, the news was not very positive on the global pandemic front as new record cases of COVID-19 were reported. And despite the continued rollout of vaccines, the lack of coordination of adequate supplies and their distribution, plus not to mention onerous amounts of paperwork, are becoming a source of much frustration. There is also concern with market chartists over the increasing cases of intermarket bearish divergence across the globe. After reaching new all-time or multi-year highs over the ten days prior to last week, the German DAX, Japanese Nikkei, and Brazilian Bovespa indices could not follow through last week. Market rallies seem to be stalling. Given that we are in the important geocosmic critical reversal period of January 14-28, the situation could easily turn into a reversal if upward momentum doesn’t return this week. Continue reading…

MMA FREE WEEKLY COLUMN FOR THE WEEK BEGINNING JANUARY 18, 2021 ©

NOTE: U.S. markets are closed on Monday, January 18, in honor of Martin Luther King Day. 

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Another change that could put pressure on stocks moving forward is the possibility of rising inflation as the Fed pledges to keep rates low and its monetary stimulus programs running. (Doubleline CEO and founder Jeffrey)Gundlach pointed to a comment made by Chicago Fed President Charles Evans on Jan. 4. Then, Evans said, “The more we get inflation up above 2% then markets are going to understand that, yes, we’re in it to win it.” Gundlach, who expects the consumer price index — a widely followed inflation metric — to hit 3% in its May/June report, said inflation “is a real game changer, should it occur.” – Fred Imbert, “Jeff Gundlach Says Stock Valuations Are Extraordinarily High, Supported Only by the Fed,” www.cnbc.com, January 11, 2021.

Many world stock indices soared to record highs last week, and many others rallied to multi-year highs as we enter the middle of three major outer planet aspects between December 21, 2020, and February 17, 2021. This is a rare and highly charged time band of geocosmic phenomena. Continue reading…

MMA FREE WEEKLY COLUMN FOR THE WEEK BEGINNING JANUARY 11, 2021 ©

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The U.S. economy shed 140,000 jobs in December, the first decline in seven months as a surge in COVID-19 cases nationwide triggered a fresh wave of shutdowns, reversing the labor market’s recovery. The unemployment rate held steady at 6.7%. Economists surveyed by Refinitiv expected the report to show that unemployment edged higher to 6.8% and the economy added 71,000 jobs. – Megan Henney, “U.S. Economy Slashes 140,000 jobs in December,” www.foxbusiness.com, January 8, 2021. 

“We signed up for making America great again. We signed up for lower taxes and less regulation. The president has a long list of successes that we can be proud of. But all that went away yesterday.” Mick Mulvaney, one-time Trump Chief of Staff, Amanda Macias, “ ‘I Can’t Stay Here’ – Mick Mulvaney Resigns from Trump Administration,” January 7, 2021.

We said it before, and we will say it again. No one escapes a hard Pluto transit unscathed, even the president of the United States, considered by some to be the greatest political escape artist ever. No more. This past week he crossed a line that he cannot retract. President Trump will not likely be forgiven by Americans or populations throughout the world, and for which he probably will not be treated well by historians. He has severely damaged his legacy (Pluto in Capricorn opposite his natal Saturn), not to mention the disillusionment and disappointment he has wrought on many of his supporters who had placed their faith and trust in him (Neptune squaring his Sun and Moon). It is utterly stunning. It is also reflective of Jupiter and Saturn both square to Uranus in today’s sky. The midpoint is January 2021. We are here. Continue reading…

MMA FREE WEEKLY COLUMN FOR THE WEEK BEGINNING JANUARY 4, 2021 ©

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From the beginning, the intention each week was to try to answer these questions: What’s happening? What’s true? Are you seeing it too? Then we’re not alone! The key is to try to say clearly what you believe to be true, even if it makes people mad. Especially if they get mad – that means you’re over the target. This little space was in the thick of it. What did it feel like? Like what it is, a privilege, to be part of it, to get to say what you see, especially in this of all years. – Peggy Noonan, “A Look Back at the Pandemic Year,” Wall Street Journal, December 26-27, 2020.

Peggy Noonan’s comments above on celebrating 20 years of writing her weekly column in the Wall Street Journal reflects my own approach to writing this column, which started 22 years ago.

The year 2020 started out with a bang and ended with a bang, with a big bang along the way. That is, the year 2020 started with new all-time or multi-year highs in several world stock indices. Then came the pandemic and all indices collapsed 30-45%, except China, whose stock market only dropped 15%. And now, in the last week of that eventful year that will always be remembered for the world-wide pandemic, many stock indices closed out at record or multi-year highs – but not in China. Continue reading…

MMA FREE WEEKLY COLUMN FOR THE WEEK BEGINNING DECEMBER 21, 2020 ©

PLEASE NOTE: There will be no weekly column next week. On behalf of everyone at MMA, we wish you a happy holiday season and a healthy and prosperous New Year!

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The stock market appears set on rising into 2021 — a year expected to see some return to normalcy, above trend economic growth, and a higher stock market, according to Wall Street strategists. Those in CNBC’s survey expect an average 2021 year-end target of 4,056, or about a 9.5% gain from current levels… Vaccines are expected to liberate individuals from pandemic restrictions and in turn, free the economy as 2021 progresses. Work from home should shift back to work at the office – Patti Domm, “Wall Street Strategists See Stocks Gaining 9% in 2021”, www.cnbc.com, December 18, 2020.

The one problem with the above quote is that Jupiter and Saturn are conjoining one another, and both will square Uranus in the next two months. Nothing goes quite as expected when Uranus is in the house. And with Jupiter involved, it tends to go way off the expected course. Continue reading…