The Year of the Metal Tiger is upon us. Traditionally, the Lunar New Year is a festive period where the Chinese celebrate by giving angpows, buy new stuff after doing a thorough spring cleaning, clear outstanding debts and look forward to bountiful rewards. However, given that the tiger is a ferocious animal, this year is generally not good for risky ventures.
Get Real On The Economic Recovery And Stock Market Rally
The rampant bullishness prevading the stock market is raising alarm bells. Today, we are, at best, peering into a nascent economic recovery but Dow Jones Industrial Average have already crossed 10,000 (about 30% off the all time high of 14,198 in October 2007) when peak euphoria reigns amongst investors. If that is not getting ahead of ourselves, I don’t know what is.
Lessons of Financial Crisis Forgotten In Heady Speculation
Financial crisis or the Great Recession, if you still remember them, seems so far away… we are now in the best six-month stock market rally since 1933. The bulls have been running riot in the stock market, seemingly unassailable and making money effortlessly, while the bears are licking their wounds.
The better than expected US jobs data is likely to reinforce the view that the economy is stabilizing after a generational financial crisis. Some economists have even suggested that the economy will rebound strongly in the third quarter, with a surge in vehicle production. However, any fledging recovery could still be threatened by strong economic headwinds.
The key is not to be overexposed to the stock market and stay nimble as the opportunities that present themselves may not follow traditional recovery patterns. Stocks could be depressed further or languish for years, so if you see the need to take profits off the table, then just do it.
It is entirely possible that under the astronomical Quantitative Easing policy, the US will suffer a double whammy of higher inflation without any improvement in its economy. Handing out the pork barrel to zombie banks and corporations means mistakes and weakness are not flushed out of the system. This is not the scary part, if you consider the multitude of bailouts awaiting the US government.