Many years ago, when I worked at investment bank Montgomery Securities, there was this technical engineer named Bob that dealt with phones, computers, and communications equipment. Since I worked in a technical part of the company, we saw him quite a bit. My boss couldn't stand him, and he referred to him as "Bob from Hell" (since there was more than one Bob in the business, as you might guess).
The main reason for his distaste for Bob was that Bob always had some lame-ass answer why something wasn't working. One time took the cake, however. I was at a remote location, and we had set up some 14.4 modems (this was 16 years ago, remember). The connection was having serious trouble, and we asked Bob what the problem was. "Well, it's raining outside" - - he said this with a straight face. He was hoping, I suppose, that we would believe him and stop pestering him about the issue, since we couldn't do anything about the rain.
I was reminded of this today by the extremely weak retail sales figures that came out. Since the entire earth - and God knows, the financial media - is overrun by bulls, they had to come up with some lame-ass explanation. Their excuse? They took a page from the Book of Bob........
OK, different subject. Ken Fisher. Now, you've probably heard of Ken Fisher, since he advertises just about everywhere that there is financial information. He is a very well-known investment adviser whose company (cleverly named Fisher Investments) is just a few miles from where I'm sitting right now. His claim to fame is the column he writes on a regular basis for Forbes.
Now, let me preface this by saying that Mr. Fisher is a sharp fellow. His market observations are sensible and usually pan out quite well over time. However, he definitely has a lot more bull blood running through him than bear, and this can sometimes weigh heavily on how he views things.
Let me give you specifics. Take a look at the chart below, and take note of the seven numeric demarcations I've laid out.
Now follow along with me, boys 'n' girls, as we read the essence of his market disposition during each of these seven instances. I have provided hyperlinks to each Forbes column.
1 - posted on 10/18/1999. "Remain 100% in equities"
2 - posted on 2/7/2000. "While still 100% equity...60% in Europe and Japan..40% in the U.S."
3 - posted 3/6/2000.
"I forecast a flat S&P in 2000"
4 - posted 3/19/2001.
"I'm outright bearish for the first time in a decade". (Editor's note: the market actually rose 10% in just a few weeks after his column, although generally speaking he was right, albeit a year late in declaring the bear was here.)
5 - posted 9/6/2002. Described U.S. stocks as "a beautiful market" - he nailed this one, absolutely.
6 - posted 12/8/2003. Predicted it would be "a three-year bull market". He was right, but, umm, aren't those three years over now?
7 - posted 5/7/2007. This inevitable "it's different this time" posting.......Ken declares simply to "Buy good stocks and enjoy the ride".
What do we conclude? I dunno. Maybe that if a bear market does start, Ken will let us know about it a year or so later. Until then, it's buy, buy, buy.
Now, today was a good day.......down a meaty triple digits (for the first time in nearly two months - it's about f*cking time). But a concern I have going into tomorrow (which is a critical day, which both Retail and Inflation reports coming out an hour before the open) is the graph below. Will the $RUT bounce off the trendline I've drawn? Or break it? Those economic indicators will absolutely dictate that.
More than one person has scolded me for not showing some Fibonacci extensions on the markets. Well, let me give it a shot, although I'm not sure how helpful these are. First, here's the Dow 30. According to the extension displayed, we've got a ways to go - the next Fib level is at 14,563, well over 1,000 Dow points above the current level.
Yet if you look at the Russell 2000, we passed that extension a long time ago. I've shaded in the entire area above this extension. I can't really drawn any conclusions from this. I love Fibs for the "in between" bounces, but I'm not so sure how germane these extensions are for these markets.
As for the NASDAQ, it obviously weakened substantially today, pushing away from that major resistance line.
And the $SPX is still above its former resistance line, although technical indicators are definitely giving off sell signals.
I don't typically follow DNDN, but this is a pretty fascinating graph. Just look at all the shares trading hands (on ungodly volume) - - first a massive gap up, then a massive gap down. Can you imagine the zillions of dollars of paper losses holders of this stock have due to that mania? I guess Jim Cramer was vindicated in the end.
Finally, LGBT got walloped today. Again, I don't normally follow this stock, but the graph is cool. It's particularly unusual since its ticker symbol stands for Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender, surely the only ticker with such an interesting basis. I know nothing about the site itself, but maybe ericbolling or NewEquity can help us out.
Ladies and Gentlemen: the Blue Man Group: