Warning Signs of a Market Top

By Rob Williams – Re-Blogged From Newsmax

Stocks this year have surged to record highs on speculation that President Trump’s push for tax reform will help to boost the economy and give corporations a chance to reward shareholders with dividends and buybacks.

But the strong gains shouldn’t distract investors from some worrisome signs that portend of a market decline, Albert Edwards, global strategist at Societe Generale, said in a Nov. 15 report.

“Investors are beginning to punish the corporate debt and equity of highly indebted U.S. companies,” Edwards said. “Excess U.S. corporate debt is probably the key area of vulnerability that could bring down the QE-inflated pyramid scheme that the central banks have created.”

Image: Albert Edwards: Watch Warning Signs of a Market Top
Albert Edwards (Societe Generale/Dollar Photo Club)
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Gold Investment Stalled

By Adam Hamilton – Re-Blogged From http://www.Gold-Eagle.com

Gold has largely been drifting sideways for the better part of a couple months now, sapping enthusiasm. Gold investment demand has stalled due to extreme stock-market euphoria. Investors aren’t interested in alternative investments led by gold when stocks seemingly do nothing but rally indefinitely. But once stock-market volatility inevitably returns, so will gold investment demand which fuels major gold uplegs.

Like nearly everything else in the global markets, gold prices are heavily dependent on investment capital flows. When investors are buying gold in a meaningful way, demand exceeds supply which drives gold’s price higher. When they’re materially selling, supply trumps demand thus gold’s price naturally retreats. The past couple months have been stuck in the middle, with gold investment flows neutral on balance.

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What A Pre-Crash Market Looks Like

By Michael T Snyder – Re-Blogged From http://www.Silver-Phoenix500.com

The only other times in our history when stock prices have been this high relative to earnings, a horrifying stock market crash has always followed.  Will things be different for us this time?  We shall see, but without a doubt this is what a pre-crash market looks like.  This current bubble has been based on irrational euphoria that has been fueled by relentless central bank intervention/a>, but now global central banks are removing the artificial life support in unison.  Meanwhile, the real economy continues to stumble along very unevenly.  This is the longest that the U.S. has ever gone without a year in which the economy grew by at least 3 percent, and many believe that the next recession is very close.  Stock prices cannot stay completely disconnected from economic reality forever, and once the bubble bursts the pain is going to be unlike anything that we have ever seen before.

If you think that these ridiculously absurd stock prices are sustainable, there is something that I would like for you to consider.  The only times in our history when the cyclically-adjusted return on stocks has been lower, a nightmarish stock market crash happened soon thereafter

The Nobel-Laureate, Robert Shiller, developed the cyclically-adjusted price/earnings ratio, the so-called CAPE, to assess whether stocks are likely to be over- or under-valued. It is possible to invert this measure to obtain a cyclically-adjusted earnings yield which allows one to measure prospective real returns. If one does this, the answer for the US is that the cyclically-adjusted return is now down to 3.4 percent. The only times it has been still lower were in 1929 and between 1997 and 2001, the two biggest stock market bubbles since 1880. We know now what happened then. Is it going to be different this time?

Since the market bottomed out in early 2009, the S&P 500 has been on a historic run.  If this rally had been based on a booming economy that would be one thing, but the truth is that the U.S. economy has not seen 3 percent yearly growth since the middle of the Bush administration.  Instead, this insane bubble has been almost entirely fueled by central bank manipulation, and now that manipulation is being dramatically scaled back..

And the guys on Wall Street know what is coming.  For example, Joe Zidle says that this bull market is now in “the ninth inning”

Joe Zidle, of Richard Bernstein Advisors, is arguing that the bull market has entered the bottom of the ninth inning.

“This is a late-cycle environment,” Zidle said on CNBC’s “Futures Now” recently.

“In innings terms, they’re not time dependent. An inning could be shorter or they could be longer. It just really depends,” the strategist said.

This bubble has lasted for much longer than it ever should have, and everyone understands that a day of reckoning is coming.

In fact, earlier today I came across an article on Zero Hedge that contained an absolutely remarkable quote from Eric Peters…

We are investing as if 1987 will happen tomorrow, because it will,” said the CIO. “But we need to be long, or we’ll be out of business,” he explained, under pressure to perform. “So we construct option trades that are binary bets.” Which pay X profit if stocks rally, and cost Y if markets fall. No more and no less.

What you do not want is a portfolio whose losses multiply depending on the severity of a decline.” That’s what most people have today. “At the last stage of the cycle, you want lots of binary bets. Many small wins. Before the big loss.”

Are we at the start or the end of the ‘Don’t know what I’m buying’ cycle?” asked the same CIO. “No one knows.” But we’re definitely within it.

When their complex swaps drop 40%, and prime brokers demand more margin, investors will cry ‘It’s not possible!’ But anything is possible.” The prime brokers will hang up and stop them out.

In case you don’t remember, in 1987 we witnessed the largest one day percentage decline in U.S. stock market history.

When it finally happens, millions upon millions of ordinary Americans will be completely shocked, but most insiders know that the other shoe is going to drop at some point.

In particular, watch financial stock prices very closely.  Last month, Richard Bove issued a chilling warning about bank stocks…

One of Wall Street’s most vocal bank analysts is troubled by the rally in financials.

The Vertical Group’s Richard Bove warns that the overall market is just as dangerous as the late 1990s, and he cites momentum — not fundamentals — as what’s driving bank stocks to all-time highs.

If we don’t get some event in the economy or in politics or in somewhere that is going to create more loan volume and better margins for the banks, then yes, they would come crashing down,” Bove said Monday on CNBC’s “Trading Nation.” “I think that the risk in these stocks is very high at the present time.”

It isn’t going to take much to set off an unstoppable chain of events.  Our financial markets are even more vulnerable than they were in 2008, and the right trigger could unleash a crisis unlike anything we have ever seen in modern American history.

Unfortunately, most Americans keep getting fooled by the artificial boom and bust cycles that the central banks create.  Right now most people seem to have been lulled into a false sense of security, and they truly believe that everything is going to be okay.

But every time before when the market has looked like this a crash has always followed, and this time will be no exception.

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This Bubble Gets Its “Alternative Paradigm”

By John Rubino – Re-Blogged From https://dollarcollapse.com

Towards the end of financial bubbles, asset prices behave in ways that can’t be explained with rational/historical metrics. So new ones are invented to make sense of things. In the 1990s tech stock bubble, earnings were “optional” and “eyeballs” – that is, the number of visitors to a dot-com’s website – were what determined value. In the 2000s housing bubble, home prices would always rise, which justified pretty much any selling price and asset backed security structure.

Now David Einhorn, a high-profile (and highly frustrated) hedge fund manager, has offered an explanation for today’s bubble:

David Einhorn: ‘We wonder if the market has adopted an alternative paradigm’

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Silver Stocks Comatose

By Adam Hamilton – Re-Blogged From http://www.Silver-Phoenix500.com

The silver miners’ stocks have mostly drifted sideways this year, looking vexingly comatose.  Such dull price action repels speculators and investors, so they’ve largely abandoned this lackluster sector.  That weak trader participation has led to silver stocks’ responsiveness to silver price moves decaying.  What can shock silver stocks out of their zombified stupor?  And how soon is such an awakening catalyst likely?

Silver stocks’ flatlined behavior so far in 2017 is surprising and odd.  Silver-stock prices are ultimately driven by silver-mining profits, which are overwhelmingly driven by prevailing silver price levels.  Silver in turn is slaved to gold’s fortunes, the yellow metal is the white metal’s dominant primary driver.  With gold faring quite well this year despite the euphoric record stock markets, silver and its miners’ stocks should be shining.

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Importance Of Being Patient

By Mark O’Byrne – Re-Blogged From http://www.Gold-Eagle.com

– Listen to Jesse Livermore and ignore the noise of short term market movements, central bank waffle and daily headlines
– Stock and bond markets are overvalued but continue to climb… for now
– What goes up must come down and investors should diversify and rebalance portfolios despite market noise
– Behavioural biases currently drive markets, prompting legendary investors to be confused and opt out
– Lesson is to prepare portfolios for long-term and invest in assets that will act as hedge in next market correction or crash
– Gold performs well over the long-term and delivers to those “sitting” and being patient

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See No Evil…Speak No Evil

By Alasdair Macleod – Re-Blogged From http://www.Silver-Phoenix500.com

The Jackson Hole speeches of Janet Yellen and Mario Draghi last week were notable for the omission of any comment about the burning issues of the day: where do the Fed and the ECB respectively think America and the Eurozone are in the central bank induced credit cycle, and therefore, what are the Fed and the ECB going to do with interest rates? And why is it still appropriate for the ECB to be injecting raw money into the Eurozone banks to the tune of $60bn per month, if the great financial crisis is over?

Instead, they stuck firmly to their topics, the Jackson Hole theme for 2017 being Fostering a dynamic global economy. Both central bankers told us how good they have been at controlling events since the last financial crisis. Ms Yellen majored on regulation, bolstering her earlier-expressed belief that financial crises are now unlikely to happen again, because American banks are properly regulated and capitalised.

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