Here’s a head scratcher for you:  As of 7:16 AM Central time, Yahoo was showing the Dow futures down more than 700 points, but the FinViz display was showing down in the range of 150-points.  So, it will be an interesting morning to watch…which set of futures will be right?  We should know shortly…maybe holiday related computers…after all, Europe’s on a holiday, too…

Meantime, the CNBC report “Treasury Secretary Mnuchin held calls with the CEOs of major banks to discuss the market turmoil” has everyone on edge. Why would they make calls?  Isn’t the market data enough?  Or, are the calls really to ask “Ya’ll see anyone in trouble yet?”

Frankly, we don’t.  For one, the price of gold is going up. Typically, when someone gets in trouble, gold will fall as assets (at large) are sold to cover positions.

We keep glancing toward Ukraine and wondering if that’s about to pop as reports like ““Definitely preparing for something”: OSINT group on Russia’s fake news on “NATO troops” in Donbas.” make the rounds…

And we have a fresh data set to consider with this morning’s release of the Chicago Fed National Activity Index (CFNAI):

Up a bit in November:

Another indicator of confidence is Bitcoin which is back to $4,137 when we checked earlier.

No sitting at the fire with eggnog for us today.

Shutdown: As a Payoff?

The OTHER “hand-wringer du jour” on the news channels is all shutdown, shutdown, shutdown.

Well, time to spill the beans:  We’re thinking “Gosheroonies! It looks almost like a year-end pay-off to the Deep State bureaucrats…” to us.

Here’s why:

First:  the closure doesn’t turn off Social Security.  Neither party (tweedle-dumbs or tweedle-dumbers) is willing to mess with Gram and Gramp’s cash flow.  That’d be like taking a hammer to a bottle of nitro.

Second, we already know – based on how “Legislation has been Introduced to Guarantee Pay to Federal Employees in Case of a Shutdown” – that federal employees will likely be paid for the time off.  Got that?  Introduced by a RINO, looks like to us…

Our Bottom Line?  Taxpayers are being screwed into giving federal employees a paid week (and however longer) of paid vacation.

Oh, and that’s crooked as hell.  I mean besides violating  the separation of church and state – Shutdowns should only happen in non-vacation times when kids are in school….following?

The whole idea behind a “shutdown” is that it should be so big and so scary that NO ONE (in their right mind) would pull the plug.  Turns out when watered down and coupled with the fact that virtually no one in the District of Corruption is really in their “right minds”, the right-thinking rationalists who remain (both of us?) will quickly see things for what it is:  A scam.

On the other hand, we are not surprised.  We also don’t blame the bureaucrats – they’re just working the system to maximal effect.

But, as a Tax Payer, shouldn’t we get to write off (whoever many days of partial government service) on the theory that we’re not getting what we pay for?  Where’s our “bonus week off WITH PAY???

The terrible Reality is that it’s the job of government to Rule.  And that, quite logically, makes the bureaucracy the RULERS.  And that – in turn – is NOT how America is supposed to work.

The biggest long-term grow industry in America – since the Great Depression – has been government.  And the best advice I can give anyone willing to go through the polygraphs and interviews with the Office of Personnel Management investigators, is to grab a government job – any .gov job –  because it’s the surest road to riches and predictable lifetime income you’ll find, bar none.

(Who me?  Pissed?  Yah think?  Helll, I’m just on reheat…keep reading.)

Predictable Year-End Rally?

Our latest trading model (Golem II, Trading Boxes) was suggesting prior to the open that we might rally for three days (or even longer) going into the New Year.  But, shortly thereafter (around Jan 10?)  with more predictable nuttiness out of D.C. we should head down.  This is despite headlines like “‘Very Possible’ Shutdown Goes Into 2019, Says Incoming Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney.”

If you follow Elliott wave counts, we have completed what looks to us like a Wave 1 down, then a 2 up rally, then a Wave 3 (i) down, a Wave 3 (ii) small rally, and the past week or two we’ve been collapsing down Wave 3 (iii).

Logically, we ought to have a Wave (iv) rally, but it could be an uneven thing because when (ii) is simple (as I count it) then (iv) can be complex.  So, maybe we slide semi-sideways for a bit.  Remember thee new congressoids don’t begin their terms of doing nothing until mid January, isn’t it?


But then, offer our “magic boxes.” the Wave 3 (v) down should come-a-knocking and our subscribers will be watching a couple of critical trend lines.  If they hold, we can call this decline done.  If they fail (and our natural bearishness has us leaning that way) then down we go into the spring.  From there, a larger rally and then the real disaster in the fall of 2019 rolls into view.

But, we shall see.  Remember:  This is NOT FINANCIAL ADVICE, just an informed discussion of the markets.

When you sit back, though, there are plenty of reasons that the Big Rollover is likely underway:

  • Seniors keep aging – so we don’t need huge places in the woods with 30 acres and 2,400 square feet under air.  Less is more as you age.
  • Worse, while real estate prices are still pretty good, over time – especially if earnings don’t begin to move up – not as many people will be able (or willing) to afford The Big House. Rising rates make bankers rich.
  • Then there’s the impact of LBGTQ:  Why procreation when recreation is less expensive?
  • And then we have the 11-year “California Real Estate Cycle” (called variously the Juglar Cycle and the average Solar Cycle, too…so it’s not like a “hidden variable.”  Point is, real estate began its descent in 2008, If it isn’t too early to handle the Big Math, add 11 years to 2008 and tell me what you come up with…

Wednesday morning, Case-Shiller will release the latest Housing Data.  It’s oh-so appropriate that the Housing Box data comes out on Boxing Day, don’tcha think?

LiveScience reported back in May of this year that the “US Birth Rate Hits All-Time Low: What’s Behind the Decline?”  Everyone can toss darts at the drivers but more sexual-social acceptance and lower family formation rates (based on costs) figure heavily into our thinking.  Also:  Takes two people working to “live the dream.”  No time for soccer…must work…must work…

My buddy Gaye Levy, (Strategic Living) and I joke all the time about their decision not to conttribute to global population instead opting for pet ownership.  Smart move! puts the cost of a canine as much as $1,000 year one but then perhaps $500 a year thereafter.  Earlier this year, USAToday offered that raising a child – but not including paying for college – was on the order of $233,600.  Which is why I regularly tell Gaye to “hug the dog.” 

As president of the National Bank of Dad, and sitting on the advisory board of the related entity Good Mommy Foundation, I can tell you even with children in their mid/late 30’s to mid 50’s, the cost of child-raising after 30-years still exceeds “several dogs-worth” for the year.

Not complaining:  Just telling it like it is: Gaye’s dog doesn’t talk.  But children don’t either, these days.  “Honor Thy Father and Mother” is mostly run as a series of telemarketing campaigns that amount to Cash-Calls or bad spin on “Dialing for Dollars.

Through the seasonal fog we see a close parallel between bad Evangelists and Millennials:   Looks to us they’re both trying To Monetize Love.

We don’t think that’s good personal policy.  Because that which can be Spoken ain’t Love.


In Indonesia, A Tsunami Has Killed Hundreds in Indonesia. Here’s What to Know About the Latest Deadly Natural Disaster to Hit the Country and More tsunamis feared as eruption continues.

And Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg Is Up and Working After Cancer Surgery

More tomorrow.  Yes, we work all the time around here… Have  a Merry…

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Prepping: Derusting & Refinishing