Banks are in trouble because of rising interest rates. Rates have climbed because inflation is high. And inflation is too high because demand is hot. One way to cool demand would be for the federal government to cut spending—which happens to be what Republicans, who control the House, are demanding in return for raising the federal government’s $31.4 trillion borrowing limit. – Greg Ip, “A Debt Deal Can Help Fix Inflation, Too,” Wall Street Journal, May 5, 2023.

“On the other hand, what will happen if the government’s debt continues to increase at the pace it is on? How long before the nation’s credit is downgraded and then it goes into default? … The other transiting outer planet involves Saturn entering Pisces, which will also form harmonious aspects to (Venus and Jupiter) in the U.S. founding chart, May 10, 2023, through January 22, 2024… Thus, a long-term plan to deal with the nation’s fragile economy can lead to positive results and the accomplishment of goals. Maybe it deals with the nation’s debt and the reversal of its deficit spending activities. It will be all about exhibiting the favorable qualities of Saturn, which is best when oriented to the long term, as in investment of time and resources.” Forecast 2023 Book, the chapter on “The U.S.A,” written in October 2022 (

This final week of Mercury retrograde (aka “The Trickster”) proved to be a real annoyance for traders, especially on the heels of the Sun/Uranus conjunction of May 9. In classic form related to these two disruptors, several financial markets negated a slew of technical buy and sell signals, while displaying distorted cyclical time bands for “normal” highs and lows.

The Sun/Uranus conjunction of Tuesday, May 9, corresponded to new cycle highs in many global stock markets within two days. This was to be expected as any major aspect involving Uranus has the potential to time “breakouts.” But with Mercury also retrograde (April 21-May 14), several of those “breakouts” turned out to be “fake outs” as they reversed right back down again.

In Asia and the Pacific Rim, China’s SSE Composite provided the perfect example with a new yearly high right on May 9 under the Sun/Uranus conjunction. The SSE made a double top to its prior 33-month cycle high of 3424 of July 5, 2022, thus fulfilling our call that this high would at least be re-tested again following its low in the index of October 31 at 2885. The SSE turned sharply lower the rest of the week. India’s NIFTY Index topped out on Thursday, May 11, whereas Japan’s Nikkei index made a new yearly high right into the end of the week.

In Europe, Zurich’s SMI was the stellar performer last week, making new highs for this year under a double top chart formation on May 8 and 12. The German DAX was relatively strong, too, hovering around the 16,000 mark until May 10 before starting to fall. The AEX of the Netherlands rallied but remained well off its yearly high. The London FTSE, on the other hand, topped out May 2 under the Mercury retrograde midpoint and was down to a new multi-week low on Thursday, May 11.

The most contradictory stock market performance was in the U.S. After making new cycle highs on May 1, just as the Mercury retrograde midpoint was getting underway, both the DJIA and S&P fell hard into May 4-5, then spent all of the last week trading within the prior week’s range with a tilt more to the downside. The NASDAQ, on the other hand, soared to its highest mark since August 2022 on Friday, May 12. So, is this critical reversal period from a high in the NASDAQ or a low in the S&P and DJIA? The Trickster didn’t make the analysis easier. But then again, that’s why this planet’s retrograde cycle is known as the Trickster. If you look here, it’s bullish. If you look over there, it’s bearish.

The precious metals markets behaved very much in accordance with the chaotic Mercury retrograde and Sun/Uranus conjunction. Silver was especially active, with a secondary high made on May 10, one day after the Sun/Uranus conjunction, at 26.20, followed by a collapse down to 23.91 on Friday, May 12. This fits more in line with the powerful planetary aspects of May 9-23. Bitcoin followed a similar path.


“If you believe in his policies, what he’s advertising as his policies, he’s the last person who could actually execute them and achieve them,” Mr. Barr told the City Club of Cleveland. Mr. Barr should know, having worked for President Trump for 22 months. “He does not have the discipline. He does not have the ability for strategic thinking and linear thinking, or setting priorities or how to get things done in the system,” Mr. Barr continued. “It’s a horror show, you know, when he’s left to his own devices. And so you may want his policies, but Trump will not deliver Trump policies. He will deliver chaos, and if anything lead to a backlash that will set his policies much further back than they otherwise would be.” – Review and Outlook, “Bill Barr’s Warning on Trump,” Wall Street Journal, May 8, 2023.

Hunter Biden and his relatives traded profitably off the Biden name with transactions that suggest the main family business is influence peddling. The 36-page report shows Biden family members and business associates created nearly 20 separate entities shortly before and during Joe Biden’s Vice Presidency. The entities transferred cash from foreign entities. Bank records show that more than $10 million was delivered to Biden family members, associates and companies from these foreign entities, and in curious ways. – Review and Outlook, “The  Biden Family Business,” Wall Street Journal, May 10, 2023.

Is this really the choice Americans are going to have for the U.S. presidential election in 2024?

We are entering the middle of the most intense geocosmic gathering of the year. The core of this incredible cosmic makeup is Jupiter in a waning square to Pluto, the only major aspect involving the outermost planets this year. Although this 13-year transit takes place on May 18, it has a 4-month orb corresponding to financial crises in about half of its historical cases. It’s possible the correlation already occurred with the multiple bank failures of March and April. But it is also possible there is another financial crisis surrounding the unwillingness of either political party to budge on raising the nation’s debt ceiling as funds are due to run out very shortly. Without a compromise or surrender, the U.S. is in jeopardy of defaulting on its debts, which would certainly roil global financial markets. Jupiter square Pluto highlights this possibility. But there are other contributing cosmic factors involved which make this political game of chicken (machoism) so combustible.

First, let us consider the Sun/Uranus conjunction that took place last week in the money sign of Taurus. The Sun conjoining Uranus is not a harbinger of compromise or bending, for this combines the principles of pride (Sun) with intellectual brilliance and/or arrogance (Uranus), as in “I am right, so why should I compromise?” Note that Donald Trump and Elizabeth Warren are both born under this aspect. Possibly brilliant but uncompromising.

Next, understand that Mars, the planet of machismo, will enter the prideful sign of Leo on May 20. There are more cases of Mars in Leo in the chart of presidents than any other sign placement of Mars. Both Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton have Mars in Leo and both seem to relish a good fight.

Next, we find that the over-confident Mars in Leo will be in opposition to Pluto (debt, credit downgrade, default) in Aquarius (more of the “I am right, you are wrong” attitude) on May 21, followed by both making a T-square with Jupiter (exaggeration and more machoism) in Taurus (“it’s all about money“) on May 23. And putting all of this together, one might be able to understand why this debt-ceiling standoff may not end pleasantly or quickly, for whenever Mars and Jupiter are involved (and Pluto won’t rescue), the possibility of a financial panic is increased. These are wild planetary stimulants laced with bravado and threats if one side doesn’t get its way, or in this case, if both sides refuse to budge and compromise. And it may not pertain to only financial markets, for with Mars in Leo and in a hard aspect to Pluto, a threat to human lives may also erupt, as in wars or fires/heat waves destroying crops. Innocent people need to be careful about entering combustible situations.

Yet help is on the way once we get past this month’s cosmic volcano zone. Next month finds, Jupiter moving into a harmonious sextile to Saturn on June 19, while Pluto moves back into Capricorn (and out of Aquarius) on June 11. Even in a favorable aspect, Saturn can still coincide with delays and frustrations, as both sides want to make sure their points are covered correctly. But at least realities will likely dictate the need to compromise and find common ground. Machoism, bravado, taunts, insults, and threats (all part of the Mars-Jupiter-Pluto arsenal) aren’t going to work this month. Maturity and moderation are the pathways to success, and fortunately, the planets will arrive there by mid-June. In the meantime, hopefully, Congress and the White House, in cooperation with the Treasury, can manage the budget frugally and not lead the nation into default. There is no justification to score political points at the expense of horrific financial consequences just for trying to prove the other side wrong.

It may be wise to be defensive regarding stocks and other assets until these geocosmic signatures pass.


 NOTE 1: THE MAY ISSUE OF THE MMA Monthly Cycles Report will be released on Monday, May 15. This month’s report will include a special update on Gold’s long-term cycles and outlook. 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. If you would like to try a one-month trial of the MMA Monthly Cycles Report, you can sign up for the May Report for only $35!

NOTE 2: ONLY TWO MORE WEEKS! 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 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, but there will also be discussions on the near-term climate for traders as well. 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 methods 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 and 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 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. Please note that Ray Merriman is Gianni’s special guest this week, May 12, to discuss the powerful geocosmic signatures of May 9-23 and what they suggest for current financial markets like Gold, Silver, Bitcoin, Currencies, Crude Oil, and the Stock Indices of the U.S., China, and Japan.


May 20, 11:00 AM: “Eye of the Geocosmic Storm: What’s Next for Financial Markets.” MMA Analyst and MMTA Director Gianni Di Poce will be giving a lecture with Astrology University on Saturday, May 20, at 2 pm ET: Eye of the Geocosmic Storm: What’s Next for Financial Markets? We are in the final stages of the most intense astrological signatures of the year. Will markets boom, or is gloom on the horizon? Special attention will be paid to stocks, bonds, forex, commodities, cryptocurrencies, and real estate. The T-square between Jupiter-Mars-Pluto will also be of major focus, along with Venus retrograde later this year. The cost is $30.

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.