“What you are getting is a stimulus at the very wrong moment. The economy is already at full employment. (The stimulus) is going to hit the economy in a big way this year and next year, and then in 2020 Wile E. Coyote is going to go off the cliff.” -Ben Bernanke, from a policy discussion at the American Enterprise Institute, reported in Bloomberg News on June 7, 2018, by Craig Torres of Bloomberg News.
The U.S. and world economies look increasingly likely to fall into a recession as the coronavirus pandemic causes swaths of major shutdowns across the globe and sent financial markets tumbling. – Megan Henney, “As Coronavirus Spreads, Recession Increasingly Likely, Economists Warn,” www.foxbusiness.com, March 13, 2020.
Stocks rose sharply in volatile trading Friday as Wall Street rebounded from the sharp losses suffered in the previous session — the worst since the “Black Monday” market crash in 1987. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed 1,985 points higher, or 9.4%, at 23,185.62. Friday marked the Dow’s biggest-ever point gain. – Fred Imbert, Yun Li, and Eustance Huang, “Stocks Post Biggest Rally Since 2008, Clawing Back Some of Their Coronavirus Collapse,” www.cnbc.com, March 13, 2020.
It was a week to remember – or forget, depending on how it went in your world. As far as the world that most people live in (not the “parallel universes” of the abstract thinkers amongst us), it was a like being on the steepest roller coaster ride ever, with the foreboding sense that the thrust down would never end. It was bound to crash and who would survive? But then this was followed by the most exhilarating flight back up that could make one feel immortal, as if death was just escaped.
Maybe there is a parallel universe where the past, present, and future are always happening simultaneously. Or maybe this was just the week that the full moon involved the Sun and Neptune (lack of realism) in conjunction in the sign of Pisces (ruled by Neptune), with Mars rapidly approaching its conjunction to the very rare “Capricorn Stellium” of Jupiter (exaggeration), Pluto (visions of mortality versus immortality), and Saturn (fear doubled in in its ruling sign of Capricorn). Whatever it was in this reality, it is something we haven’t seen in the cosmos for centuries, and in world equity markets ever. It was the week of the two greatest single-day losses in the Dow Jones Industrial Average, and the greatest single-day gain ever.
And it hasn’t even peaked yet, cosmically-speaking.
OK. Enough hyperbole, even though Mars isn’t going to conjoin Jupiter until next Friday, March 20, as spring begins in the pioneering but assertive/aggressive sign of Aries. What we witnessed last week requires a re-evaluation of longer-term cycles, for some serious damage was done. Our call was for a bottom in this time band (our specialty is market timing), but one that would likely not exceed 21% in U.S. equity indices. The decline into the 2.154 low of near Thursday’s (March 12) close represented a loss of 28.45% from its all-time high of just one month ago (the S&P and NASDAQ topped out only three weeks ago). Even though there was (and still is) a confluence of several rhythmic and cosmic cycles underway that were – are – ideally due now as described in our recent special report (due in March +/- 1 month), the reality (in this universe) is that even longer-term cycles are now involved, a possibility that was also outlined in that special report. That is both good news and bad news. And that will be the focus of this month’s MMA Cycles Report, which will be issued to subscribers of that report on Monday evening, March 16. In this month’s report we will review the historical studies of these longer-term market and planetary studies and summarizing what they now indicate.
It wasn’t only world equity markets that were rocked hard last week. Gold and Silver both suffered from whipsaw-like market behavior. On Monday, March 9, Gold soared above $1700 for the first time in 7 years. By Friday, it was testing $1500, is lowest price since December 24. Silver was battered even worse, plunging intraday to $14.42 on Friday, its lowest mark since May 2019, and a loss of nearly 25% in just three weeks. T-Notes, on the other hand, soared to an all-time high (and longer-term interest rates plunged to a new all-time low) last Monday, March 6, while Crude Oil fell to $27.34 on the same day, its lowest level since its 9-year cycle low in March 2016. Just two months ago, Crude Oil was trading at 65.65 following the assassination of Iranian General Quasem Soleimani by US forces on Iraqi soil. That was one week before the 32-37 year conjunction of Saturn and Pluto in Capricorn, of which the deadly COVID 19 Coronavirus is yet another manifestation of this powerful planetary combination. Bitcoin and currency markets were also subject to wild gyrations in price last week.
SHORT-TERM GEOCOSMICS AND LONGER-TERM THOUGHTS
First off, a note of recognition to MMTA graduate and MMA market analyst Mark Shtayerman, editor of the MMTA International Cycles Reports (ICR). On Thursday evening, before the markets closed, he issued a special alert and recommendation to subscribers to buy the US stock market on the close. The market suffered its greatest one-day loss, as prices fell into the close. The next day, Friday, the US stock market had its greatest one-day advance. Mark’s recommendation was based on his knowledge of combining MMA market timing methods that overlapped with a case of bullish oscillator divergence, a technical signal that MMA uses to help time major reversals. Nice call, Mark! BTW, the next ICR reports will come out March 23-24, and Mark just issued another alert on the XAU Gold and Silver Mining index. If you don’t subscribe to ICR, you may want to consider it now, as Mark has a “hot hand.”
Let’s return to the “Capricorn Stellium,” which is being activated powerfully right now, and will reach one of its cosmic peaks March 20-April 4, when Mars will conjoin Jupiter, Pluto and Saturn, ending with the first of three Jupiter/Pluto conjunctions. As described in this year’s Forecast 2020 Book, Saturn/Pluto has a potentially very positive side to its expression as well, and I believe we are seeing it manifest now in the worldwide fight against COVID 19. I cannot help but to be impressed with the way the US and other nations of the world are galvanizing together, willing to make great personal sacrifices, to defeat this disease. People are quarantining themselves to stop their exposure to, or spreading of, this contagion. It is truly amazing what we can do when faced with a threat like this to our survival and way of life.
Yet it has also happened the previous two time this century when Saturn and Pluto were in a hard aspect. It was present during the Great Recession of 2007-2009, when the Federal Reserve Board, under Ben Bernanke, drastically cut interest rates to zero (ZIRP) and initiated bold, new quantitative easing (QE) programs that reversed the threat to the world financial system before it became a full-blown Depression. The time before that was in the summer-fall of 2001 when the World Trade Center was attacked and the rise of terrorism began, a threat that has now been greatly deterred. That was another time that people and governments all over the world galvanized to fight a common threat (enemy), and eventually succeeded.
Today we see leaders of governments and major businesses cancelling hugely profitable events, like basketball, hockey, baseball, and concerts, plays, etc. Drastic measures (Jupiter and Pluto) are being implemented as if this is a war and this disease is the enemy that needs to be defeated. The central banks and governments of the world are initiating large stimulus measures to help the world financial system stay afloat. It is really an incredible testament to the nature of everyone, as part of the same human family, that we can do this. It is, in my view, the highest expression Saturn and Pluto (“superman/superwoman”) in Capricorn. We may be mortal, but sometimes, when our foundations are at risk, we can act as if we are immortal. This is also the character of Saturn and Pluto in Capricorn.
But of course, I am a Capricorn, and so I worry about the long-term effects (the beginning of the new Saturn/Pluto cycle) of further monetary and fiscal stimulus on the continuing explosion of national and world debt. It is not like we have reduced personal, national or world debt at all since 2008. This explosion of new debt could become the cause of another major hurdle in the not-too-distant future. It’s like Ben Bernanke (who might really be the smartest man on the planet) predicted two years ago. All that earlier fiscal stimulus may have been at the wrong time, when it wasn’t needed. Now, when it is really needed, our arsenal of fiscal and monetary tools required to deal with this current crisis has been diminished. And although it may give a temporary boost to the economy in these turbulent times, these fiscal stimuli will likely have longer-term consequences that may very well require even more drastic sacrifices down the road – maybe even as early as 2021, when Saturn will square Uranus. If one looks back over the history of Saturn/Uranus in hard aspect, another theme will be observed that has often played out in the financial world, especially equity markets.
As I stated on my Facebook page last week, if the leaders of the world really want to put the full power of humanity at work to defeat this virus threat more quickly, they may want to consider reducing all major distractions from this fight. Lowering interest rates, providing fiscal and monetary stimuli, won’t do it alone. In addition to the fear of contacting COVID 19 and the health-risk it represents, there is an almost equal fear regarding the risk of losing one’s financial security. Yes, I know, not everyone even has a sense of financial security. Many live from paycheck to paycheck, if even that. But over half of Americans have a considerable amount of their savings invested in financial instruments in one form or another – like stocks, mutual funds, precious metals, bitcoin, etc.
When you see the DJIA and other world stock markets suffering their greatest one-day losses in two or three of the trading days last week, interspersed with the greatest one-day advances, it provides no sense of security. Jobs are at risk, Small businesses are at risk, Individual brokerage and retirement accounts are at risk as people panic, not knowing when this is going to end and normalcy return. Fear feeds upon fear, and fear knows no limits to how far it can plunge the human psyche. With Mars approaching Jupiter this week in Capricorn (exaggeration of fear or false sense of security) and Jupiter approaching Pluto in Capricorn on April 4 (extreme measures that may also pose a threat to one’s life style or existence), it may be wise for leaders of the world to consider declaring a market holiday or vacation so people’s minds could be entirely focused on defeating COVID 19 without the distraction of their sharply rising and then plummeting portfolio values. Once we get a handle on this pandemic and start seeing a decline in new cases, we can return to a reality we know and are familiar with. Of course, if the market can start of string of impressive rallies like it did on Friday, we would not need or want a market break. But if the pattern of huge losses follows each short-term rally due to the coronavirus pandemic, it is something that needs to be considered, at least until April 4, after which time it would seem the panic has peaked. This is where the value of astrology to society can be very evident. I realize that some believe such a drastic action would cause more panic, but, come on. How much more “panic” can we experience than witnessed last week? And yes, with the end of a market holiday, prices may re-open sharply lower, but not as much as the cumulative loss could be from keeping markets open when they are falling like a hot knife through warm butter.
Additionally, when markets are shut down, they often rally smartly after the initial wave of selling happens. Just look at the Chinese Shanghai Index market when it re-opened after their 12-day holiday on February 4, during which time the coronavirus exploded. The index bottomed early the next day, February 5, and then began a powerful three-week rally. So far, the Shanghai Index has not been back to those lows experienced right after their 12-day market holiday. Furthermore, China began to show a decline in the number of instances of coronavirus, perhaps because its citizens weren’t distracted with sharply changing stock portfolio values. The people and the government were focused on defeating COVID 19. There are lessons we can learn from China here.
March 20-April 4 is the cosmic peak in this current state of hysteria and/or irrational delusion. It is also a time when many financial markets are due for a reversal. either a bottom, or perhaps culminating in a sucker’s rally. If the later, then this may continue until Venus turns retrograde in mid-May. It’s not over until we start seeing data that says it’s under control. But, we will get there. That’s the promise of Saturn conjunct Pluto if we really try and rid ourselves of distractions and concentrate on the more important matter at hand: our health. Money is nice and necessary. But without good health (and love), what is it really worth?
NOTE 1: The MMA Monthly Cycles Report for March 2020 will be released this week, Monday-Tuesday, March 16-17. With the recent all-time highs in US stocks registered less than one month ago, followed by the steepest decline since the Great Recession of 2007-2009 (in less than one month), this is a very important time for financial markets. The wild price swings of the past two weeks were not limited to stocks. Precious metals, Crude Oil, and currencies also experienced huge moves. This month’s issue will outline the new, longer-term cycle labeling that these extreme moves (Jupiter/Pluto) indicate, and what they portend for the intermediate and longer-term future. Every issue provides MMA’s outlook for the U.S. stock market, Gold and Silver, Treasuries, Euro Currency, Crude Oil and Soybeans. Each issue also contains MMA’s original geocosmic critical reversal dates (CRDs) and Solar/Lunar reversal dates over the next several weeks for DJIA, Gold, and Silver, complete with trading strategies for position traders during the next month. If you are not a subscriber to the monthly MMA Cycles Report and wish a copy of our outlook for financial markets, consider a one-month one-time-payment March only report for $35.
NOTE 2: LEARN ABOUT FUTURES! March 11, 25, and April 1. The first class last Wednesday night went well and the video recording is now available. We focused mostly on the U.S. stock market. The objective of this 3-part course is to instruct attendees about trading futures, or ETFs that reflect futures’ prices, as given in each MMA subscription report. The class is structured with the first hour of introduction and then an overview of the current markets and trading opportunities that are setting up, especially during the important March 20-April 7 critical reversal zone. The cost for three-part course, Trading with MMA Market Timing Methods, is $295. The live class is limited to 30 people, and has sold out. We have opened more spots so students can be part of the recordings only. Each Thursday following class the video recordings as well as presentation slides of each class will be available to those who sign up.
NOTE 3: The MMA Forecast 2020 Webinar recording is now available and still valuable! This once-a-year broadcast showed the odds for a potential stock market crash in 2020-2023 and discussed what to do about it to protect one’s portfolio. This 2+ hour webinar discussed the geocosmic importance of Saturn conjunct Pluto that took place January 12, which is very evident in today’s news (impeachment, assassinations, sports scandals, record high in stock prices, rallies in metals, etc.). It discussed the forthcoming Jupiter/Saturn conjunction on the Winter Solstice 2020, right after the U.S. election, and its historical correlation to economic and market cycles. Updates were provided on financial markets since the book was written in November 2019, including the U.S. and German stock market (DAX), Gold and Silver, Crude Oil, Bitcoin, and currencies. The stock markets and Gold were given most attention. Cost of the recording is $55.00 and includes the slides of the presentation plus instant access to the video recording of the event.
March 11, 25, and April 1: LEARN ABOUT FUTURES TRADING USING MMA METHODS! See Announcement above.
September 9-14, 2020: The ISAR 2020 Conference in Colorado on “Reimagining the Future.” The largest and most exciting international astrological conference taking place in 2020. With a faculty of over 100 of the world’s top astrologers from 25 different countries, and very dynamic tracks on Financial Astrology, Mundane and Political Astrology, and other topics, this is an event you will not want to miss.
On Wednesday, September 9, Ray Merriman will be conducting a 4-hour workshop on “Astrology and the Art of Financial Market Timing: How to Forecast Market Trends and Market Reversals.” This course will provide research studies showing the correlation of astrological factors to short- and longer-term financial market timing in stock markets, precious metals, and Bitcoin. It is the only workshop Ray plans to conduct in 2020.
Saturday, September 12, 2020: Raymond Merriman will be presenting a lecture on “The Times, They Are a Changin’ – The Political, Economic, and Monetary Revolution.” It’s not just the convergence of the 20-, 200-, and 800-year long-term Jupiter/Saturn cycles. It is also Saturn in Aquarius, squaring its ruler, Uranus, in Taurus. The convergence of the Jupiter/Saturn cycle in air sign Aquarius symbolizes the dawn of a new socio-economic-political era; the waning Saturn/Uranus square, the demise of an older order. What does this bode for financial markets of the world, and what can you do? We will discuss that in this lecture.
Sign up by April 19 and receive a pre-registration special discount price for the Main ISAR 2020 Conference. A discount for pre- and post-conference workshops is also in effect until April 19. To register or see more information on this spectacular event, go to go to https://isar2020.org and be prepared to be amazed!
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 a 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 hence potentially affect 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.