Find a Dead Cat, Quick!

The market going into the open looked like it would open down just a tad.  But is this the beginning of collapse?  No.  A “dead cat bounce” is likely out there in the short-term.

Collapses of the Black Monday sort have (almost) never happened more recently than 37-days from a stock market high.  More often, it’s in the 55-days or longer range.

December 5th, the intraday high of the S& P was 2079.47, so if you add at least 37-days to that you come up with January 11th.

The real time to be wetting your Depends will be January 29th, or thereabouts.  So for now, more likely is a dead cat bounce and remember the Santa rally is still due and options expire next week.  Odds of global disaster are slim until then.

Not that it couldn’t happen; it just wouldn’t be the smart money bet.

Retail Sales

Take an auto salesman to lunch today.  Thank him (or her) for doing more to save the economy that the whole collection of slick-talkers in DC.  Why?  Well…

From the Census folks this morning:

The U.S. Census Bureau announced today that advance estimates of U.S. retail and food services sales for November, adjusted for seasonal variation
and holiday and trading-day differences, but not for price changes, were $449.3 billion, an increase of 0.7 percent (±0.5%) from the previous month, and 5.1 percent (±0.9%) above November 2013.

Total sales for the September through November 2014 period were up 4.7 percent (±0.7%) from the same
period a year ago. The September to October 2014 percent change was revised from +0.3 percent (±0.5%)* to +0.5 percent (±0.2%).
Retail trade sales were up 0.7 percent (± 0.5%) from October 2014, and 4.9 percent (±0.7%) above last year. Auto and other motor vehicle dealers were
up 9.5 percent (±3.2%) from November 2013 and nonstore retailers were up 8.7 percent (±2.1%) from last year.

The chart behind it all:


See that tall gray bar? 

Why yes, you’re exactly right:  The growth in retail is a) largely because of auto sales (which is insane, but it’s the only thing keeping the economy alive) and b) the general merchandise category isn’t even keeping up with money-printing by the Fed. 

So you can either believe everything is hunky-dory – and you’d be right.  Or, you can believe it’s the end of the Roaring Twenties and we’re about to hit the skids.  In which case, you’d be right one way or the other.

The Great American Hold-Ups

Say, I bet you thought we just had elections here in ‘Merica, didn’t you?

Well, you were wrong.

“We the People” have been stripped of meaningful political participation by both parties and there is no better evidence of the collusion to rip off our freedoms than the pending Federal Budget.

Before we get to that (growing) list of betrayals, let’s first examine what the Washington Post noted:  The amount of money wealthy individuals will be able to give to political parties is about to triple.

OK, say you’re a working stiff (or stiffette) and your tribe pulls in $100,000 a year.  That’s about where the old limit was for the rich who like to buy everything including government by, of, and for, the rich.  Now it’s going up to three times that.

I don’t know if you grok the notion of one person, one vote, but when comes to politics, any money deal that puts this much raw power in the hands of a select few is just damn dangerous.  The imbalance?  Well, for each of the rich, if you have $25 left over at payday, it means the political will of 250 families can be over-ridden by one fat cat.

Worse:  Both majority parties in ‘Merica know it and buried this kind of crap so there wouldn’t be public discussion of the usurpation of rights issue.

But it doesn’t stop there.

Once upon a time, back in the old America, politicians usually had the courtesy to wait a few minutes before going back on their campaign promises.  Not any more.

They’ve figured out that as soon as the polls close, they can begin lying again:  Amnesty is fully funded, so is Obamacare…and the list of other “favors” goes on and on.  the Post headlines it “We skim, so you don’t have to…”

Is it a crooked deal?  Well, now that you’re asking, hell yes it is.

A few (Elizabeth Warren, notably) are saying “Enough is enough!”   Is Warren upset about the backroom deals on immigration and healthcare?  Maybe.

But her issue is that this traitorous indenture (which is what a crooked budget is) also does away with many provisions of Dodd-Frank legislation which was supposed to prevent the bankster crowd from gambling public money (via guarantees of credit default swaps) in order to take some of candy away from the bankster scree.

Long ago, the FCC had a quaint concept:  It was called “promise versus performance.”  And in it, there was control of radio and television licensing.  A station would have to do so much public service, so much news, so much public affairs in order to keep their licenses to effectively print money.

Unfortunately, we don’t have promise versus performance in America.  And the antics in Washington this week prove the point:  We have all been effectively put on the political version of eBay.

And we’ve lost.

Drought Busting

Big rain and wind in NorCal this morning…expected to last for a while.  Will it stop the larger problems of water rights and such?  No, but that would be nice.

Elsewhere, Kentucky will not be doing $18-mil in tax breaks for a Noah’s Ark park.  We take this as a sign from above the SF storm will blow itself out west of the Mississippi.

When You Don’t Pass Out Cookies…

Like key US Staters did in Ukraine, leading to a pseudo-rev there, you end up with the local dominant country remaining in power.  Such is the case as protester camps were disassembled in Honk Kong overnight.

The open secret is that the war with China won’t come until the 2017-2022 period, so no cookies for the opposition groups until closer to then. 2015 might be the year…I expect protest fortune cookies to arrive by then…

Join the revolution of your pechewzelwhacker will fall off” – that kind of thing.  Just give it time.

Hey!  Let’s Deface A National Treasure

Greenpeace goes too far – again:  Defacing the Nazca Plain in Peru.    So is this an “I’m sorry” moment, or a “true colors” moment?

Or, how about soft Eco terrorism?

We’ll get to the Coping section after this….