Patriotism, as they say, is the last refuge of scoundrels. And, in Messrs. Trump and Kim, we have
quite a pair. I am having trouble believing that this contretemps is more than a giant Trump
smokescreen, with North Korea a willing accomplice.Trump is falling in the polls. He fumbled
his end of the health care bill and special counsel Mueller and his group are taking a hard look at
whether serious financial crimes were committed involving Trump et al and Russians. With the
fire and fury threat, The Donald has drawn attention away from increasing political weakness.
But, since there is no guarantee this is not an exercise in reality TV fakery, but is instead a crisis,
the stock market took a jolt this week. VLE Weekly . The Value Line Arithmetic dropped sharply
this week and is at shorter term support just under 5500. Moreover, the index is set to test its 40
week m/a and has broken the uptrend in place since the latest advance began in Feb. '16. These
are 'heads up' factors for the broad market, and we'll have to see next week whether the latest
contretemps between the US and the PRNK will fizzle and provide relief, or persist and worsen
and lead real to genuine trouble for us and the market.
Market breadth last week took its sharpest drop since prior to the 2016 election. The NYSE
A/D line could be ready to test its 13 wk. m/a and the rising trend lines from Feb.'16 and the post
election rally have been broken. Note, however, that the A/D line is still well above its 40 wk.
m/a., so a longer term test may still be a ways away. NYAD Weekly
The bottom panel of the chart shows the VIX or volatility measure. It has been in a jagged
down trend since the autumn of 2015, but last week's bounce broke that. This represents
another 'heads up' for the market.
Well then, have we entered a more volatile and corrective interval that has characterized so
many past Aug. / Oct. periods? Too early to tell I say, especially since you have a bullshitter
like Trump as the instigator.
- Peter Richardson
- Retired chief investment officer and former NYSE firm partner with 50 plus years experience in field as analyst / economist, portfolio manager / trader, and CIO who has superb track record with multi $billion equities and fixed income portfolios. Advanced degrees, CFA. Having done much professional writing as a young guy, I now have a cryptic style. 40 years down on and around The Street confirms: CAVEAT EMPTOR IN SPADES !!!