Our three favorite e-mails you sent us after we published our holiday magazine were simple ones…
- Susan C. wrote us: “I like it!!!!👵🏻❤️🎄”
- Carl T.M. said, “You always bring me a smile. Thank you and Happy Holidays for you and your family.”
- And Jim H. wrote, “I remember wonderful family gatherings at Christmas. It is about family.”
Thanks Susan, Carl, and Jim – and Merry Christmas to you all as well.
Here, we’ve got our presents wrapped and stored high in closets… We’ve decorated a tree with lights and bells… And we’re watching the stock market fall about 8% since the start of December. It’s now at its lowest point of the year. Merry Christmas for investors, indeed.
We read a headline yesterday that the market was experiencing its “worst December since the Great Depression.” Then, the S&P 500 Index dropped 14.5% in December, while the Dow plunged 17%.
However, the one historical high note is that typically the latter half of December – what we’re heading into now – is positive. CNBC reports…
The bulk of the stock market’s December gains usually comes in the second half of the month. Kensho’s data show that, between Dec. 15 and Dec. 31, the Dow rose on average 1.5%, the S&P advanced 1.6%, the Nasdaq 100 surged 2.1% and the Russell 2000 soared 3.1%.
That’s what some folks call the “Santa Claus rally.”
So could we resume the rally before year-end and head into 2019 on a high note? Or is the “Melt Up” finally turning?
We suspect that there’s still upside left in the market due to one simple fact: There’s no recession looming. And every major stock market crash in the U.S. has happened during a recession.
We hope you have a wonderful holiday season and don’t overly worry about the market. And if you do find yourself concerned about where your portfolio is headed, that’s a sign that you may be taking on too much risk.
So what have you done as the market has dropped from its September highs… Did you stay the course with your investments? Sell some of your stocks? Buy more? And did worries about your portfolio keep you up at night?
We’d like to hear from you. We’ll feature a few of your responses in the January issue of American Consequences. Write us at [email protected].
And of course, if you haven’t had a chance to read our White Elephant Holiday Issue yet – it’s right here.
Now here are a few things we’re reading…
Some reasons to be optimistic from American Consequences feature contributor Steve Sjuggerud…
These two indicators have fantastic track records of calling recessions ahead of time. They both show that investors have no reason to worry today.
Of course, the legendary thinker and American Consequences feature contributor Bill Bonner recently spoke with a group a few blocks away from the White House. And his message wasn’t a happy one…
“The end will begin with another debt crisis. Most likely, businesses won’t be able to refinance their loans. The stock market will fall about 50% or more… The Fed will cut rates… We’ll see a trillion-dollar boondoggle… Then, we enter the gates of Hell. Merry Christmas.”
What could possibly go wrong?
Over 2.7 million borrowers owe in excess of $100,000, of which, about 700,000 owe $200,000 or more.
Of course, many of those student debt holders are interested in free money and socialism. To which we say… look to Venezuela. It was once the most prosperous South American country… Yet today 90% of its citizens live in poverty thanks to socialist policies.
I see more millennials rejecting capitalism and embracing socialism as “the wave of the future.” So, when Teen Vogue tweeted recently, “Can’t #endpoverty without ending capitalism!” my initial reaction was, “Let them come to Venezuela.”
Could that reversal happen here? It’s possible… This visualization divides America into superstar regions and broad expanses of struggling communities.
Looking beyond these big picture gains, many communities in the U.S. are struggling. Check-cashing stores outnumber McDonald’s locations, the opioid epidemic rages on, and tens of millions are living in poverty around the country.
Own any pot stocks? How are they doing?
Hemp legalization has been a longtime goal of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, a Republican from Kentucky, who believes it can help replace tobacco as a key crop for his state’s farmers.
Does your local Starbucks have a working restroom? Tell us at [email protected].
A half-dozen toilets were locked or barricaded for no clear reason. Others were closed for prolonged “cleaning,” which an insider said was needed after extreme soiling caused by drug-using, incontinent vagrants. “Letting everybody in has resulted in nobody getting in,” an employee at one branch fumed.
Be careful when walking around the woods. One bite from this tick and you might have to kiss red meat goodbye…
Thousands of people are developing life-threatening reactions to animal products – and a single tiny creature is to blame.
And finally, we can’t resist this ingenious and over-engineered booby trap. Worth watching if someone has stolen a package on your porch recently:
“The moral of the story is, just don’t take other people’s stuff.”
And let us know what you’re reading at [email protected].
Publisher, American Consequences
With P.J. O’Rourke and the Editorial Staff
December 19, 2018