Free Weekly Forecast
October 30, 2020
REVIEW AND PREVIEW
The U.S. economy grew at a record pace in the third quarter – increasing at a 33.1% annual rate – recovering about 2/3 of the ground it lost earlier in the coronavirus pandemic. – Harriet Torry, “U.S. Growth Eases Much of Slide,” Wall Street Journal, October 30, 2020.
In spite of the better-than-expected GDP number, world stock indices continued their sell-off last week, mostly due to the record number of new daily cases of COVID-19 being reported in the U.S and across the globe. Along with this alarming increase in new cases, many communities are starting to impose new lockdown measures. This will hurt business activity, which is why the markets are falling. Hopefully, however, it will save lives and lead to another strong economic rebound once this second (or is it the third?) wave ends.
The Mercury retrograde cycle will also end next week, November 3, and thankfully, so will the U.S. 2020 election campaign, although we may not know the victor for days or weeks afterward. We will discuss the correlation of this year’s election to past geocosmic cycles that are in effect now, at the end of this week’s column. But in terms of market activity, last week witnessed equity markets breaking out of their narrow trading range that was in effect through the first half of the Mercury retrograde cycle. Continue reading…
October 23, 2020
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President Donald Trump said Friday that he does not want the aid deal to bail out Democratic states. The major averages fell to their session lows on those remarks… Several market experts and economists, including Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell, think it is imperative that lawmakers reach a deal on another stimulus package. – Fred Imbert, “Dow Falls on Concern About Stimulus as Wall Street Heads for Weekly Loss,” www.cnbc.com, Oct 23, 2020.
The latest good news was Thursday’s report that continuing jobless claims for the week of Oct 10 declined by nearly one million, and by 3.6 million in the last three weeks. Employers are also raising wages. Third quarter median weekly earnings increased 8.2% year-over-year and 9.2% for the bottom 25% of workers. – “Red and Blue States of Recovery,” Wall Street Journal Opinion page, October 23, 2020.
It is the middle of the Trickster’s retrograde cycle. And this time, Mercury has a companion, for during this same period, Mars is also retrograde (September 9-November 14). What do we know about Mercury and Mars in retrograde? Not much. There is not a high correlation to a trend when either of these lords is retrograde, except when Mars ends its retrograde motion (November 13-14). Market reversals happen then. Continue reading…
October 16, 2020
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“This did not start as a financial crisis, but it is morphing into a major economic crisis, with very serious financial consequences,” World Bank Chief Economist Carmen Reinhart told Bloomberg. “There’s a long road ahead.” – Brie Stimson, “Top World Bank Economist Says Coronavirus Pandemic Morphing Into ‘Major Economic Crisis,’” www.foxbusiness.com, October 16, 2020.
The World Health Organization said Friday that Europe’s coronavirus outbreak is “concerning” as the number of available intensive care beds continue to dwindle and near capacity in some regions. When adjusting for population, the number of new coronavirus infections in Europe has now overtaken the United States. Berkeley Lovelace Jr., “WHO Concerned About Europe’s Coronavirus Outbreak as ICU Beds Near Capacity in Some Regions,” www.cnbc.com, October 16, 2020.
The Trickster has returned. Mercury turned retrograde last Tuesday, October 13. His movements related to financial markets or political messaging might be more wily and difficult to predict than usual this time because his retrograde cycle overlaps with that of Mars (September 9 through November 13). Within a week of Mars turning retrograde, many stock markets of the world made multi-year or all-time highs, including the S&P and NASDAQ, on September 2. Last week, within a day of Mercury turning retrograde, many of these same markets have made a secondary high.
October 09, 2020
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“If Biden gets in, this market’s going to crash,” Trump asserted in an interview on Fox Business Network with host Maria Bartiromo. Invoking Biden’s tax plans, Trump also claimed that the former vice president would “tax this country into a depression like in 1929.” – Robert Schroeder, “Trump Claims Biden Win Would Crash Market, Cause Depression,” www.marketwatch.com, August 13, 2020.
It may be the middle of one of the most challenging geocosmic time bands of the year. And the world (and the union) may seem like it is falling apart with no chance of healing, while the sitting president of the United States is falling deeper and deeper in the polls with the election only three weeks away. But the stock markets of the world keep rising. It is like the markets don’t believe Trump can lose, for it is almost universally agreed that if he does lose, the stock market will fall into an abyss that will make last March’s decline look like some kind of an innocent fluke. Well, maybe the outlook of a Biden victory and a stock market panic is not universally agreed upon, but it is what the President stated this week (and many times before), and it is what many market commentators believe as well, including yours truly. Yes, historically, stock markets perform well under a Democrat presidency. But they don’t always start out so well, and their best performance is when Republicans control one or both branches of Congress at the same time.
October 02, 2020
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U.S. stocks fell on Friday after President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump tested positive for coronavirus… The Trump tweet initially knocked down Dow futures more than 500 points in overnight trading… “This October surprise raises the already high level of political uncertainty markets are dealing with as election day approaches,” said Jeff Buchbinder, Equity Strategist for LPL Financial. “Markets appear to be increasingly pricing Joe Biden in as the favorite, and this news may not change that, but Trump could gain support from a quick recovery.” – Yun Li, Eutstance Huang, Pippa Stevens, “Stocks Fall After Trump Tests Positive for Coronavirus, Stimulus Hope Adds Some Support,” www.cnbc.com, October 2, 2020.
The U.S. economy added 661,000 jobs in September, suggesting the labor market’s recovery from the coronavirus pandemic is beginning to plateau amid fading government relief money and a gradually growing virus caseload. It showed the unemployment rate unexpectedly fell to 7.9% from 8.4%. – Megan Henney, “Final Jobs Report Before Election Day,” www.foxbusiness.com/economy, October 2, 2020.
It was a rather disappointing jobs report. On top of that, the President and the First Lady were both diagnosed with COVID-19 late Thursday evening. Continue reading…
September 25, 2020
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The steepest and most prolonged decline since the pandemic lows of March 16-23, 2020, continued last week. It is not surprising since the transit of Mars retrograde, in late Aries, is making a waxing square aspect (first quarter cycle) to the Capricorn Stellium now through October 19. The panic low of March 2020 happened when Mars was conjoining these three planets. The conjunction represents the beginning of a cycle. The first quarter cycle (waxing square) usually represents a testing or a re-visit to the themes that were present at the start of the cycle. The COVID-19 and the decline of world stock indices are indeed a return to the fears and market patterns of March. However, so far, the drama is not yet nearly as intense as it was in March. But we still have three more weeks to go. As noted from March 1-23, 2020, three weeks is plenty of time for markets to fall and cases of COVID-19 to rise significantly throughout the world. Yet it is also plenty of time for everyone to apply the lessons we learned from the mid-March time frame and prevent the amplitude of panic experienced six months ago.
After posting new post-crash highs just before Mars turned retrograde on September 9, several global stock indices fell to their lowest levels in 2-4 months last week.
September 19, 2020
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Global equity markets slid further on Thursday after the US Federal Reserve stopped short of promising changes to its massive bond-buying program… Investors were left uneasy even after the Fed on Wednesday signaled it would hold US interest rates at historic low levels until at least the end of 2023 – Adam Samson and Camilla Hodgson, “Global Equities Slip After Federal Reserve Comes Up Short on QE Plans,” Financial Times, September 17, 2020.
Fighting against the Fed has not been a winning strategy since the pandemic market bottom in late March. But when the Fed announced last week that it will leave rates unchanged, around zero percent, through 2023, world equity markets did not cheer. Has the Fed run out of weapons to stimulate the stock market, especially heading into the U.S. Election? Or is this just Mars retrograde in its ruling sign of Aries doing what it normally does when it goes retrograde in its ruling sign, which is to shift from robust aggression and confidence to fears of undesirable consequences from having been too aggressive and confident. Under Mars retrograde, the aggressor is usually the loser. It’s going to remain that way with the heavens until November 13. Don’t start something if you have doubts it will succeed.
September 11, 2020
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Now, however, analysts expect more stimulus before the end of the year. “If inflation remains very low, the ECB may decide in December to extend its crisis-response asset purchase program,” Florian Hense, eurozone economist said. – Silvia Amara, “Shocker Eurozone Data Raises Question About What the ECB Will Do Next,” www.cnbc.com, September 1, 2020.
The race may soon be back on to see who can provide the cheapest world currency, as getting inflation to rise remains an elusive goal. No one wants deflation, and even with interest rates hovering around zero, inflation also continues to remain below the goal of 2%. Now, this is becoming a growing concern for world equity markets, which have started a noticeable decline over the past week. This decline fits well with our market timing studies, as several world indices made new cycle highs within two days of our geocosmic critical reversal date on September 4.
September 03, 2020
There will be no market column issued this week. Monday will be the Labor Day holiday in the U.S. and markets will be closed on September 7. Instead, we are going to reprint a full chapter from the Forecast 2020 Book, a timely piece since I am beginning to write the Forecast 2021 Book. This chapter was written in November 2019. See below for the chapter, “JUPITER CONJUNCT PLUTO: EXTREME MEASURES” where I have added in my current thoughts in red. The year 2020 certainly has been a year of “Extreme Measures.” This chapter will give you an idea of what to expect in next year’s book, coming out in December 2020. Enjoy this chapter from Forecast 2020 along with my commentary!
JUPITER CONJUNCT PLUTO: EXTREME MEASURES
Today, the Republicans are the fiscally irresponsible party and the Democrats the fiscally insane party. – Mona Charen, “Deficit is the Great Missing Topic,” Arizona Republic, November 11, 2019.
The final piece of the Capricorn Stellium involves the 13-year synodic cycle of Jupiter and Pluto. This will be a three-passage series of conjunctions taking place on April 4, June 30, and November 12, 2020.
August 29, 2020
PLEASE NOTE: There will be no market column issued next week. The following Monday will be the Labor Day holiday in the U.S. and markets will be closed on September 7.
REVIEW AND PREVIEW
I made it to Germany today. It was an easy but long trip as direct routes are hard to come by now. As Jupiter (international travel) will depart from Capricorn (restrictions and travel bans) around the winter solstice, readers may want to look at airlines and travel-related companies for possible investments on any normal corrective decline. But as you see in this week’s column, “normal” corrective declines have been the exception rather than the rule in stocks this year.
Global stock markets were generally favorable last week, with many making new post-crash highs again. The NASDAQ and the S&P both made new all-time highs. The Dow Jones Industrial Average, German DAX, and India’s NIFTY indices are not far behind. Japan, however, had a setback as Prime Minister Abe announced his resignation due to health concerns on Friday, and the Nikkei tumbled.
In other markets, Crude Oil soared to a new post-crash high and Gold is once again testing 2000 as the U.D. Dollar is again testing its lowest level in over two years.