Is inflation over? That was the temporary market sigh of relief you heard Wednesday morning as the feds reported that the consumer price index for March rose a mere 0.1%. But prices are still rising at a 5% 12-month rate, which will not strike most Americans as a triumph. This is the real inflation story. A price level that rises 5% instead of 9.1% isn’t deflation. It is disinflation, which means prices are still rising, only not as fast as they were. The overall standard of living is lower and Americans are still paying more for nearly everything. – Wall Street Journal Editorial Board, “On Inflation, the Price is Still Wrong,” April 12, 2023.

Americans pulled back on spending at retail stores in March as demand cooled sharply in the face of banking turmoil, persistent inflation and high interest rates. Retail sales, a measure of how much consumers spent on a number of everyday goods, including cars tumbled 1% in March, the Commerce Department said Friday. That is well below the 0.4% decline projected by Refinitiv economists and a marked drop from February, when sales fell 0.2%. It is the biggest decline since December. – Megan Henney, “Retail Sales Tumble More Than Expected,”, April 14, 2023.

Global stock indices continued their rallies off the primary cycle lows of March 13-20 into the very end of last week before this powerful geocosmic reversal zone of April 11-21 struck, fueled by Venus square Saturn and the disappointing (Saturn) retail sales (Venus) report.

The Asian and Pacific Rim markets were closed by the time the U.S. retail sales report was announced. Hence, most ended on a very positive note for the week, with multi-week highs realized. None of the indices in this region made new yearly highs, but China’s Shanghai Composite came close with Friday’s high of 3340, just slightly below the high of 3342 on March 7. Each recorded their highest levels last week since the lows of March 14-20.

In Europe, the German DAX soared to a new yearly high of 15,841 on Friday, well above its prior yearly high of 15,706 on March 7. The other indexes also rallied nicely into Friday, although none made new highs for this year yet, for a developing case of intermarket bearish divergence into a geocosmic critical reversal date (CRD) time band.

The picture was even clearer in the U.S., where the DJIA ran up to 34,082 on Friday, its highest mark in 8 weeks, but still below its previous primary cycle crest of 34,712 on December 13. It then promptly sold off over 300 points, consistent with the Moon in Aquarius (high) and Venus square Saturn in the middle of a CRD (reversal). However, it did recover half of that by the close. The S&P nearby futures also rallied to a new cycle high of 4189 on Friday, but that was still below the recent high of 4208.50 made on February 2. The NASDAQ nearby futures told a very different story as they peaked the previous week, on April 4, at 13,348. Last week, however, was mostly down, with a low of 12,923 on Thursday, April 13. Is it possible that the NASDAQ made a trading cycle low late last week while the other indices all made new cycle highs? With the Trickster, Mercury retrograde, readying to enter the fray next week, anything is possible, and the more bizarre, unexpected, and discordant, the more the Trickster likes it.

Gold and Silver also exhibited noteworthy performances last week, with both rising sharply into Friday for new cycle highs. Gold exploded to 2063.40 on April 13, very close to its all-time high of 2089, which formed in August 2020. However, on Friday it tumbled sharply back to 2006. Silver also rallied sharply to a new cycle high of 26.23 intraday on Friday, but right afterwards, it plunged nearly one dollar lower. That’s a big reversal intraday.

A similar pattern to stocks and metals was present in Crude Oil, the Euro currency, Bitcoin, and Ethereum. Bitcoin, for instance, surged to 31,064 on Friday, April 14, its highest mark since June 2022, and up over 100% from its low of 15,479 on November 29, only to fall over $1000 later in the day. Ethereum was just as impressive with its run up to 2130 on Friday, an appreciation of 99% from its low of 1071 on November 10, 2022, and 142% from its low of last year at 879 on June 18. I don’t know of any advisory service that caught the move down into late last year (from the high to the low of 2021) and the move up since then as well as MMA’s weekly and daily reports have. Bitcoin is responding very well to our combination of cyclical and geocosmic market timing studies. For that matter, so are Crude Oil and stocks.


An embarrassing leak of highly classified Pentagon documents has endangered intelligence methods, exposed American strategy, and undermined trust among U.S. allies… The trove of classified documents, which first appeared on the Discord social media site last month, revealed stunning details about U.S. spying on Russia’s war efforts in Ukraine and secret information about Ukraine’s combat power, according to NBC News reporting. –Natasha Turak and Dan Murphy, “America’s Allies ‘Can’t Trust Us’ after ‘Disaster’ Intelligence Leak, Former Intel Officers Say,”, April 14, 2023.

As mentioned earlier, we are now headed into a weekend that is in the middle of this current geocosmic cluster. This represents the peak of cosmic energy, so a change in investor psychology is most probable during these periods, which means the potential for a trend reversal in many financial markets is higher than normal.

This week finds a solar eclipse in the last minutes of the last degree of Aries on April 19-20, with the Sun and Moon both in a square aspect to Pluto, which is in the first minutes of the first degree of Aquarius. With Pluto highlighted by a hard aspect with the solar eclipse, the attention will likely be on the “4 D’s:” debt, deficits, downgrades, and defaults. Maybe companies’ first quarter earnings reports are far less impressive than expected.

Additionally, with Pluto in such a hard aspect to a solar eclipse, there could be a bit of a dark mood regarding the future. First, a solar eclipse is when the Moon (the past) blocks out the Sun (the future), casting a shadow on the Earth. It is like the light has been turned off, and the room becomes dark. This implies the path that humanity has been taking towards its future is interrupted, and there may be a sense of losing one’s way. There could be doubt or fear about what’s next. With Pluto, the god of the underground, there is also a potential sense of foreboding as “secrets” are revealed or uncovered, perhaps through “leaks” such as happened last week regarding the Pentagon’s classified information. There may be more damage than originally thought regarding these leaks or leaks in other areas that may be revealed. This is not a favorable time to share secrets, for to do so will likely make matters worse, not better. Confidentiality will be held in great value now, and loose lips will be punished.

The next day, April 21, Mercury will turn retrograde in mid-Taurus, the money sign, within two degrees of Uranus, the disruptor. Sharp and sudden price moves are possible here too. With Mercury retrograde, reversals from at least trading cycles are common within 4 trading days. However, Mercury retrograde is a Trickster, and if everyone sees and expects the same thing, the Trickster nearby to Uranus will likely operate in a contrarian fashion. Technical indicators of “buy” or “sell” signals are often false. It is not uncommon for prices to swing back and forth every 1-4 days. If they continue in one direction after the fourth day of the retrograde, then a reversal will tend to happen within one day of the retrograde midpoint, which will be May 2-3. On the positive side, Mercury retrograde may be favorable for intuition over logic and common sense.

One concern is that the next big reversal zone will be May 16-23, when Jupiter enters Taurus, Mars enters Leo, and Pluto is still in the first degree of Aquarius, forming a fixed T-square. This is a cosmic symbol of another possible financial crisis, and it occurs close to the time when the U.S. debt ceiling limit needs to be raised lest the U.S. face the prospect of a default. That, in turn, could cause a major worldwide panic, albeit a panic that may not last long since the Jupiter/Pluto square is only an intermediate-term planetary cycle and not a long-term one like the Saturn/Uranus waning square of 2021 through October 2022.

This is a time when investors would be well-advised to be cautious and defensive, possibly through the end of May. It may be fine for short-term trading or hedging core positions but challenging if you are trying to execute a longer-term strategy. Unexpected things come up, and it behooves one to be flexible and not force something (like a position trade or a business deal) before it is ready.


 NOTE 1: JUNE 1-4: THE 2023 MMA INVESTMENT RETREAT AND MMTA3 COURSE TWO: “GEOCOSMIC CORRELATIONS TO LONG-TERM INVESTMENT CYCLES.” The 4-day investment retreat is taking place at the Michigan State University Management Education Center in Troy, Michigan, and is also offered virtually via Zoom. Instructors and presenters will include Ray Merriman, Gianni Di Poce, Kat Powell, and Rita Perea.

This 4-day intensive will introduce the participant to the role of Outer-Planet Aspects and Ingresses to long-term financial market cycles. With this understanding, one will learn to identify time bands that historically have coincided with the most favorable long-term investment opportunities as well as time bands that have correlated with long-term market peaks or selling opportunities. These studies are based on actual research on the performance of financial markets (like the U.S. and British stock markets) going back to the 17th century. Once these studies and methods are disclosed, the instructors will then illustrate how they apply them to current market conditions. Outlooks will be given for long-term cycles in various markets (such as stock indices, Gold, and Bitcoin), with the goal of identifying when the next excellent investment or selling opportunities are most likely to take place. Additionally, MMTA Graduate Rita Perea will give a presentation on “The Role of Psychology in Financial Market Trading: Maximizing the Key Mindset Traits of Successful Traders and Investors.”

 You do not need to be a student of the two-year MMTA3 program to join! “Geocosmic Correlations to Long-Term Investment Cycles” is a standalone course designed for investors. This event is an excellent opportunity to interact with MMA President Raymond Merriman and MMTA Director Gianni Di Poce, and several other like-minded students of financial market timing over an extended 4-day period. There is nothing like the in-person interactions that occur at an MMA Investment Retreat.

The cost is $2750, or $2500 if reserved before May 11. Cost includes a 120-page workbook, all class recordings, and slides of the class presentations. Note that this retreat is also in conjunction with Course Two of MMTA3, and non-student participants will get credit for Course Two if they decide to attend MMTA in the future. For further information on this unique and special event, contact MMA at 1-248-626-3034 or by email at

NOTE 2: THE APRIL ISSUE OF THE MMA Monthly Cycles Report was released last week. This month’s report included a special update on Gold’s long-term cycles and outlook, given that Gold is now re-testing its all-time high of August 2020. Every issue provides an intermediate-term investors’ and near-term traders’ outlook for the U.S. Stock Market, Gold, Silver, Copper, Treasuries, Euro Currency, Crude Oil, and Soybeans. The Monthly Cycles Report reviews MMA’s original geocosmic critical reversal dates (CRDs) and Solar/Lunar reversal dates over the next several weeks as well as trading strategies for position and aggressive traders during the next month. With the solar eclipse coming up this week, April 19-20 (square to Pluto), and Mercury turning retrograde on April 21, this is an important period for financial markets! If you would like a one-month trial of the MMA Monthly Cycles Report, you can sign up for the April  Report for only $35, or $55.00, which will also include the next MMA Cycles + report by MMA analyst Pouyan Zolfagharnia.

 NOTE 3: TUNE INTO MMA’S WEEKLY YouTube show, hosted by Gianni Di Poce. 5-15 minute FREE episodes review market activity of the past week and offer a preview of the geocosmic signatures in effect for the next week and beyond. You may subscribe to MMA’s YouTube Channel today at no cost and get alerted when a new weekly episode is released! To view this week’s MMA YouTube episode, click here.

NOTE 4: For readers of this column who are interested in the modern-day history of astrology and its transformation from a hobby to a professional career, you may be interested in the current issue of The Mountain Astrologer. The June-July issue includes Part 1 of “My 50 Years of Community Service in Astrology,” which depicts the events and challenges many of today’s professional astrologers encountered in this task, and in particular, my role in this evolution (which is not over). For information on TMA (the Mountain Astrologer), please go to and consider taking out a subscription to this month’s TMA (The Mountain Astrologer). Let them know you are interested in this article and look forward to reading parts 2 and 3 of this saga!


June 1-4: MMA INVESTMENT RETREAT: “GEOCOSMIC CORRELATIONS TO LONG-TERM INVESTMENT CYCLES.” A 4-day, in-person investment retreat hosted at the Michigan State University Management Education Center in Troy, Michigan. It will also be offered virtually via Zoom. See description above.


Disclaimer and statement of purpose: The purpose of this column is not to forecast 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 often cite 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 may affect human activity in the times to come. The author (Merriman) will do this from the perspective of a cycles’ 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 the psychological dynamics that underlie (or coincide with) the news events and their potential effect on financial markets.

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 of this column assume any responsibility whatsoever for anyone’s trading or investment decisions. Readers of this report should understand that commodity futures and options trading are considered high risk.