That’s a wrap for 2022. Stocks closed out the year with a whimper. All three major indexes posted modest losses Friday, capping their worst year since 2008. The S&P 500 ended the year down 19%. “U.S. Stocks Close Out Worst Year Since 2008,”, December 30, 2022. 

The Biden administration is planning to begin refilling the Strategic Petroleum Reserve, a senior administration official said Friday, marking the end to the massive supply releases that the White House ordered to tame the sharp price spikes earlier this year… The administration had announced in October it would set up a process to purchase oil from companies to refill the SPR at a price of $67 to $72 a barrel. – Ben Lefebvre, “Biden Administration Set to Start Refilling Oil Reserve,” Dec 16, 2022, 

The level of the SPR — an emergency stockpile of crude oil managed by the Department of Energy (DOE) — declined to 375.1 million barrels last week, marking the first time it has fallen below 378 million barrels since December 1983, according to the Energy Information Administration. Prior to last week, the reserve’s lowest level since 1983 was recorded on Dec. 30, 1983, when it hit 378.3 million barrels. – Thomas Catenacci, “US Emergency Oil Stockpiles Drop to Lowest Level Since 1983,” Dec 28, 2022,

We are back. And so is Mercury retrograde, otherwise known as “The Trickster.”

After the impressive rally of many global stock markets from their lows of 2022 in late September through mid-October (with the conclusion of the last passage of Saturn square Uranus) to their new cycle highs of December 13, 2022, a sharp decline began right into Mercury turning retrograde on Thursday, December 29. Some markets, like in the U.S. and Europe, bottomed the prior week, December 19-22, as Jupiter formed its third and final semi-square to Uranus. The first two (mid-May and late September 2022) coincided with sharp stock market declines from highs that occurred a couple of weeks earlier, just as this one did.

Now we will see if the Mercury retrograde can end this latest decline and commence a new rally. With the Trickster, you never really know until the middle of the retrograde cycle, which will take place on January 8, which is a weekend.

In other markets, both Gold and Silver enjoyed nice end-of-the-year rallies. Gold rallied to a high of 1841.90 on Tuesday, December 27, the highest level since its yearly low of 1618.30 on November 3. Silver also rallied into December 27, to 24.49, which was slightly lower than its 8month high of 24.52 made the prior week on December 21. Crude also made its weekly high of 81.18 on December 27, up from its yearly low of 70.08 on December 9. It makes one wonder: did Trader Joe purchase the 300 million barrels of oil then as he announced in October that he would? If so, why did the Department of Energy announce prior to last week that the stockpile has continued to fall to its lowest level since 1983? If you sold 180M barrels at $95 and then bought 300M, shouldn’t the price be much higher than $80? Maybe it’s the Trickster at work already. Or maybe it’s Saturn (government) in Pisces (confusion) starting up a little early before its ingress on March 7.


“Stable growth” isn’t just a sentiment. For Democrats, the U.S. economy is understood now as primarily a public economy in which well-being for most people comes from government payments to individuals, rather than from private economic activity or even work… There’s one other problem: A “stable” low-growth economy will be really, really boring. – Daniel Henninger, Sober Up, America,” Wall Street Journal, December 29, 2022.

I did not choose to be what I am. It is my karma – ­James Cavell, “Shogun,” 1975. 

There’s a lot of Capricorn energy underway from the cosmos this week. First, Mercury turned retrograde in 24° Capricorn on Thursday. It will remain there until it turns direct at 8° Capricorn on January 18. In the sign of Capricorn, Mercury can be serious and critical. It represents the mind of a skeptic or scientist. A true, scientist is a skeptic, but a true skeptic is not necessarily a scientist or even scientific. By itself, this combination does not lend itself well to rising stock markets. It is sort of like any market rally has to prove itself to be taken seriously. Until then, skepticism is akin to fear and doubt of anything that is hyped to be a positive. “Prove it” is the calling card for Mercury in Capricorn.

Of course, the Sun is in Capricorn now as well until January 20, just two days after the Trickster ends its retrograde romp. The Sun, in the sign of the mountain goat (or sea goat) wants to climb. No hurdle or obstacle is too high to overcome if applied with disciple and patience. The Sun in Capricorn is up for the challenge of “proving it” that Mercury in Capricorn requires.

On Monday, January 1, Venus will conjoin Pluto in 27° Capricorn. Thus we have money and credit (Venus) vying for dominance over debt (Pluto). In Capricorn, debt and over-spending promise to be major issues this year. It baffles financial experts how the U.S. government can justify another $1.7T stimulus package when it claims to be serious about fighting inflation. It’s not going to make it easy for the Fed (a Capricorn entity born December 23, 1913) to lower interest rates any time soon if Congress can’t get serious about fiscal reform. What is needed is good ole Capricorn productivity generated by the private sector. Until then, Henninger (quote above) is right. You don’t get a “stable economy” as much as you get a boring and very slow-growing economy (if we are lucky). It’s the Jimmy Carter, post-Saturn-square-Uranus economy of 45 years ago, all over again. Maybe we should be happy with this as traders. After all, that’s the kind of economy in which traders should flourish. But it is boring for investors looking to find signs of life, or excitement, in any sector of the market other than energy, where prices are primed to go higher and higher, especially if Biden ever gets around to pushing the buy button and purchases 300 million barrels of oil as he announced two months ago.

Oh, there I go again, playing the role of the Trickster in the skeptical sign of Capricorn. Wake me up when it’s over. Oh, wait a minute! Mars and Uranus will turn direct on January 12 and 22, with Mercury doing the same on January 18. I think we will get a heartbeat then. Maybe even an explosion. Prepare for a wakeup call then. Markets could get rattled. So could governments and their leaders. 


NOTE 1: The audiobook of the abridged edition of Forecast 2023 is now available. Click here to order this abridged edition for only $19.95, or $13.96 if you are an Audible member, or for one credit (no cost) if you have earned Audible credits. Narrated by astrologer Thomas Miller (he does an excellent job!), this audiobook is 5 hrs and 34 minutes. It covers all sections of the Forecast Book except the financial markets and the geocosmic calendar and ephemeris in the back of the book. When you go to the audible website linked here, click on the book cover > sample > to hear the introduction. ORDER NOW and load it onto your phone to listen to while you are working out or just taking a walk. It’s a great way to get prepared for the New Year! 

 NOTE 2: FORECAST 2023 – THE BOOK – is completed In both the print and eBook (English) versions. If you live in the U.S. you should have received it by now. If you live overseas, the actual delivery depends on your postal service.

The price for the printed edition of Forecast 2023 is $66 as long as supplies last. We are down to the last 1-1/2 boxes. Last year’s book sold out, so order now before they are gone. There will be no additional printings. The price for the eBook edition will remain $55, and will continue to be available even if the printed edition sells out.

This year’s printed and eBook versions of the full Forecast 2023 Book will also be available in these languages:

German: or email at



NOTE 3: Each foreign translation of Forecast 2023 has a section on that nation’s stock market that is not in the English or other nations’ Forecast Book. Yet we are aware that some readers and investors may be interested in the stock markets of these other nations, but do not wish those editions in the other nation’s language. Therefore, we make those stock market outlooks available in English as a separate service for $35.00 each. The overseas market reports for 2023 that are available separately in English include: Japan’s Nikkei, China’s Shanghai Composite, and the German DAX plus Zurich SMI indices. Each is available in PDF format. Each report is about 9-11 pages, with their monthly charts as of November 2022, and a list of their critical reversal dates for 2023. 

NOTE 4: Trends for the Twelve Signs 2023 is now available at as an eBook in English and German!!!. Click here to order from Amazon. We are still waiting for the audiobook via to become available. There are a lot of excellent sun sign books available each year. However, we don’t think you will find a more insightful and well thought-out book dedicated to the yearly trends for the twelve individual sun signs than this one. It is, in our opinion, the finest of all the 2023 sun sign books. Period. The book, Trends for the Twelve Signs 2023, is written by Antonia Langsdorf-Merriman and Raymond Merriman and is also available directly through MMA, print or eBook edition. The format of this year’s book covers the outlook for health, relationships, business, career, finances, and overall psychological factors of each sign for the year. It includes specific birthdates that are affected by the major geocosmic transits within and to each sign. The cost of this unique book is $25-30 (eBook versus print edition), with a further discount if ordered together with the Forecast 2023 Book. For more information, check out this video of Alie and Ray opening the boxes of Trends for 2023 as they arrived. 

NOTE 5: TUNE INTO MMA’S WEEKLY YouTube Channel on the geocosmic climate related to financial markets hosted by MMTA Educational Director Gianni Di Poce. These 5-15 minute video presentations 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 announcements when each geocosmic market review is ready for viewing! To view this week’s MMA YouTube episode, click here. 


January 6, 2023, 8 PM EST: MMA CHINA WEBINAR FORECAST 2023 WEBINAR! That is next Friday! Financial markets review for the China SSE stock index, Gold, Crude Oil, DJIA and Bitcoin. Topics to be covered will include the four most highlighted geocosmic time bands for trend reversal through July for many financial markets; the importance of the outer planets changing signs 2023-2025; the significance of Pluto crossing the Jupiter/Saturn “supercharged degree” 5 times in 2023-2024; war versus Renaissance cycles coming up; plus the financial markets listed above and questions asked by participants ahead of time. Send your questions to Cost is $55. Understand that this will be a 2-3-hour webinar and will include translation into Chinese from English. You will hear both languages (English first, then Chinese). To register, click here.

January 21m 2023, noon , PST: “Outer Planet Shifts in 2023: Crash or Book” with Gianni di Poce on Zoom  for the Astrology University. Cost is $30.00. To register,  click here. 

February 19, 2023, 1:15 PM EST: The Annual Worldwide Webinar and Address on Forecast 2023 with Raymond Merriman. Save the Date! Starts at 11:15 AM, MST, which is 1:15 PM EST, 6:15 PM GMT, 7:15 PM CET. It will be very early in the morning in Australia, Beijing and Tokyo. In the comfort of your own home or office, you can tune into Raymond Merriman’s annual worldwide Forecast 2023 Webinar. This broadcast will address themes from this year’s Forecast 2023 Book, with updates on financial markets since the book was written in November 2022, including the U.S. stock market, Gold, Silver, Crude Oil and Bitcoin. Cost is $55.00, and includes the slides of the presentation, plus access to the video recording of the event. Questions will be answered that are submitted one week before the event if they are deemed of interest to the overall audience. If you are unable to attend live, the video recording will be available the following day. To register, click here. 

March 18, 2023: The third MMTA (Merriman Market Timing Academy) since 2013 will commence. This two-year educational and training experience will change your life and how you view financial markets. Yes, the course is challenging, but it is also very exciting and fun! With this course, you will know where the market is at any given interval of time, and the trading or investing strategy to employ. These 8 courses consist of 6-7 zoom meetings (100+ hours of live instruction and interaction with instructors Ray Merriman and Gianni di Poce, including review and preview of current markets each session) over a two-year period, on Saturdays (noon, EST), with 1-2 month breaks in between each course. That is, you will be in 2-hour Saturday sessions 18 weeks/year, two in-person, live weekends, all over a two year period (March 2023-September 2024), plus one additional voluntary review session for each test after every course. There is nothing else as comprehensive in the field of market timing as this program available anywhere! It covers MMA’s market timing methodology for long-term and intermediate-term investing, plus position and aggressive short-term trading. Please note: This will be the last c2-year MMTA program taught by Ray Merriman. Cost is $2500/course, with a discount if registering for the full two-year program. Applications for enrollment will begin January 18 and will be limited to 40 full-time students (last time we had to turn applicants away). Enrollment includes an interview prior to acceptance. Below are just a couple of the many comments received from MMTA 2 graduates. More to come.

“My perspective on the markets, and perhaps life, have changed dramatically since being gifted the privilege of joining MMTA2.  I am extremely grateful for having been given the opportunity to learn directly from you.” – Kyle M, MMTA2 graduate, North Carolina, programmer, trader, and high school math teacher.

Attached is my final research project on the cotton market…as always critiques are welcomed!!  Doing these research projects and really dissecting the cotton market during this course has allowed me to trade cotton very successfully over the last year.  It is extremely rewarding to do the work and then to watch it unfold according to plan.” – Wyatt F, Wisconsin, MMTA2 graduate, Owner of large family farm operation, and now an MMA analyst.

Thank you for all your help through MMTA2, it was one of the best things I have ever done.” – Renato R, Australia, MMTA graduate.

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.