Gold News

Bernanke's Alice in Wonderland Stock Market

A.K.A. Young FrankenMarket...

IN FAILING to take a "healthy" correction, the stock market is now running on policy and momentum, writes Gary Tanashian in his Notes from the Rabbit Hole.

Hence we now dub thee Young FrankenMarket; Ben Bernanke's creation, sustained by government and legacy MBA debt, following Alan Greenspan's monster that was stitched together with artificially low interest rates that ultimately manifested in a huge commercial credit bubble.

Nonfarm, payrolls last week came in at 165,000 and an over bought, over loved market popped its cork and exploded into blue sky. It had to be more than an okay 'jobs' report that did the trick. It was likely the combination of a still inflating Fed (and ECB, Europe popped hard as well) with some data that was good enough, but not so good as to call into question the Fed's systematic inflation regime. This is Bernanke's FrankenMarket, created by policy.

After making bearish patterns and/or negatively diverging from the Dow and S&P 500, the Russell 2000, Nasdaq 100 and Semiconductors all broke to new all-time (RUT) or recovery (NDX, SOX) highs on Friday. 

The current period reminds me a lot of Greenspan's monster that emerged from the credit bubble early last decade, FrankenMarket as I called it in the first public article I ever wrote.

I remember wanting to be bearish [in 2004] because bearish seemed like the honest way to be. You cannot after all create (print) a bull market and a sound economy to go with it, can you? Well, yes and no.

Through interest rate manipulation, Greenspan created a bull market that really wasn't (as measured in gold, which stripped out inflation's effects and gave a 'real' and bearish view by the Dow-Gold ratio).

As noted previously, the But It Is What It Is name for my website came in large part due to my realization that the bull (in nominal stock prices) should not be fought as I looked around and saw (non-gold bug) perma-bears being blown up left and right. Any gold bull who was also bearish the stock market likely did just fine. But the play was long gold, and avoid or long the stock market.

Today we are challenged with a different monster. This one is more dangerous to the honest money contingent because it appears the golden shield has melted down and stopped protecting people from the obvious inflation being promoted to service liquefying the banks, propping the economy and promoting a stock market bubble.

But here we have to take a step back and realize that it was 10+ years of bull bull bull for gold. Who are we to say what type of corrections should be suffered along the way? Stripping out the emotion, what we have is a really smart (I'd say diabolical in a way that is not entirely negative) policy maker who has somehow either engineered a 'best of all worlds' Goldilocks environment or taken the horseshoe out of his ass and hung it up on the wall of his well-appointed office.

I think it might be the latter, which in less crude terms means that it was just time for a technical adjustment. I hate to qualify the pain real people are suffering as an "adjustment", but think about it. The negative energy at the bottom of markets and the economy in 2008/2009 was incredible. This very letter reproduced the Time Magazine Depression 2.0 'breadlines' cover in support of its then bullish orientation.

Markets may need to work their way through an equal and opposite upside blow off before all is said and done. Who knows when that will come? It could be next week or it could be next year. But it is a near certainty that sentiment will play a big role.

For now, the trends are the trends, there are few signs that anyone is getting concerned about inflation and hence, the inflation continues. It is the Alice in Wonderland market:

"Nothing would be what it is because everything would be what it isn't. And contrary-wise; what it is it wouldn't be, and what it wouldn't be, it would. You see?" –Alice

Gary Tanashian successfully owned and operated a progressive medical component manufacturing company for 21 years, through various economic cycles. This experience gave Gary an understanding of and appreciation for global macroeconomics as it relates to individual markets and sectors. Along the way, Gary developed an almost geek-like interest in technical analysis (TA), to add to a long-time interest in human psychology. Various unique macro market ratio indicators were also added to the mix, with the result being a financial market newsletter, Notes From the Rabbit Hole (NFTRH) that combines these attributes.

See the full archive of Gary Tanashian.

Please Note: All articles published here are to inform your thinking, not lead it. Only you can decide the best place for your money, and any decision you make will put your money at risk. Information or data included here may have already been overtaken by events – and must be verified elsewhere – should you choose to act on it. Please review our Terms & Conditions for accessing Gold News.

Follow Us

Facebook Youtube Twitter LinkedIn



Market Fundamentals