Economic medicine

Economic medicine that was previously meted out by the cupful has recently been dispensed by the barrel. These once unthinkable dosages will almost certainly bring on unwelcome after-effects. Their precise nature is anyone’s guess, though one likely consequence is an onslaught of inflation.

Predict the short-term movements

Let me be clear on one point : I can’t predict the short-term movements of the stock market. I haven’t the faintest idea as to whether stocks will be higher or lower a month or a year from now. What is likely, however, is that the market will move higher, perhaps substantially so, well before either sentiment or the economy turns up. So if you wait for the robins, spring will be over.

20th century

Over the long term, the stock market news will be good. In the 20th century, the United States endured two world wars and other traumatic and expensive military conflicts ; the Depression ; a dozen or so recessions and financial panics ; oil shocks ; a fly epidemic ; and the resignation of a disgraced president. Yet the Dow rose from 66 to 11,497.

Uncertain time

You know, people talk about this being an uncertain time. You know, all time is uncertain. I mean, it was uncertain back in – in 2007, we just didn’t know it was uncertain. It was uncertain on September 10th, 2001. It was uncertain on October 18th, 1987, you just didn’t know it.

Macro opinions

Forming macro opinions or listening to the macro or market predictions of others is a waste of time. Indeed, it is dangerous because it may blur your vision of the facts that are truly important. (When I hear TV commentators glibly opine on what the market will do next, I am reminded of Mickey Mantle’s scathing comment : “You don’t know how easy this game is until you get into that broadcasting booth.”)