Anatomy of a Stock Market Crash

By David Haggith – Re-Blogged From The Great Recession Blog

The 1929 stock market crash became the benchmark to which all other market crashes have been compared. The following graphs of the crash of 1929 and the Great Depression that followed, the dot-com crash, and the stock market crash during the Great Recession show several interesting similarities in the anatomy of the world’s greatest financial train wrecks. They also show some surprises that run against the way many people think of these most infamous of crashes.

Graphing the 1929 Stock Market Crash

The stock market roared through the 1920’s. Building construction, retail, and automobile sales advanced from record to record … but debt also climbed as a way to finance all of that. This crescendoed in 1929 when the stock market experienced two particularly exuberant rallies about a month apart (one in June and one in August with a plateau between).

Then retail, housing and automobile sales started to fall apart.

Sound familiar?

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Fed QT Bearish For Stocks

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

Ominously for the stock markets, the Federal Reserve is warning that quantitative tightening is coming later this year.  The Fed is on the verge of starting to drain its vast seas of new money conjured out of thin air over the past decade or so.  The looming end of this radically-unprecedented easy-money era is exceedingly bearish for these lofty stock markets, which have been grossly inflated for years by Fed QE.

Way back in December 2008, the first US stock panic in an entire century left the Fed frantic.  Fearful of an extreme negative wealth effect spawning another depression, the Fed quickly forced its benchmark federal-funds rate to zero.  Once that zero-interest-rate policy had been implemented, no more rate cuts were practical.  ZIRP is terribly disruptive economically, fueling huge distortions.  But negative rates are far worse.

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Robert Shiller is Worried

Re-Blogged From http://reports.pmcapital.com.au

Legendary Economist Robert Shiller is Worried. Maybe You Should Be Too.

Robert Shiller, renowned economist, Yale professor and Nobel Laureate, is worried about the over-priced stock market.  So much so that he is refraining from adding to his own stock positions. One factor, among many, that he says makes him nervous is the CAPE ratio. A recent Bloomberg article notes that while the CAPE metric is still about 30 percent below its high in 2000, it shows stocks are almost as expensive now as they were on the eve of the 1929 crash. “The market is way over-priced,’’ Shiller says. “It’s not as intellectual as people would think, or as economists would have you believe.’’

Stock Markets Sit Blithely on a Powerful Time Bomb

By Wolf Richter – Re-Blogged From Wolf Street

No one knows the full magnitude, but it’s huge.

How big is margin debt really, and how much of a threat is it to the stock market and to “financial stability,” as central banks like to call their concerns about crashes? Turns out, no one really knows.

What we do know: Margin debt, as reported monthly by the New York Stock Exchange, spiked to another record high of $528 billion. But it’s only part of the total outstanding margin debt – which is when investors borrow money from their broker, pledging their portfolio as collateral.

An example of unreported margin debt: Robo-advisory Wealthfront, a so-called fintech startup overseeing nearly $6 billion, announced that it would offer its clients loans against their portfolios.

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Wall Street And Bear Scat

By Mark J Lundeen – Re-Blogged From http://www.Gold-Eagle.com

As seen in the Bear’s Eye View (BEV) chart below, the last all-time high for the Dow Jones Index happened on March 1st.  Since then however, it’s been slowly deflating.  The post-election run up in the Dow Jones (enclosed in the Red Circle) was an excellent advance; one of the best in the post March 2009 market.  So we shouldn’t begrudge the bulls should they now take a rest before their next upward assault on the stock market, which I’m sure they are planning.  However, some plans never get past their conception stage.

I like this BEV chart for the Dow Jones.  It displays each advance and percentage decline of the Dow from its 09 March 2009 bottom (6,547) to its last all-time high of 01 March 2017 (21,115.55).  The typical correction was a little over 5%, with only four double digit declines (none greater than 17%) since March 2009.

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Base Jumping off the Stock Market’s Peak

By David Haggith – Re-Blogged From The Great Recession Blog

According to Bank of America, there is no time to leap into the stock market like the moment before its cataclysmic fall. BofA’s Michael Hartnett has no doubt that the stock market stands on the edge of catastrophic collapse, but the euphoric rise before it takes the plunge could be the greatest financial rush you’ll ever know:

As Hartnett explains, the catalyst for bull in equity and credit markets since 2009 was the “revolutionary monetary policy of central banks” who, since Lehman, “have cut rates 679 times and bought $14.2tn of financial assets.” And, once again, he warns that this central bank “liquidity supernova” is coming to an end, as is “the period of excess returns in equities and corporate bonds, as is the period of suppressed volatility.” (Zero Hedge)

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Stock Topping Valuations

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

The prevailing valuations in the lofty US stock markets are increasingly becoming a bone of contention.  Wall Street calmly asserts stocks are reasonably valued, since it has a huge vested interest in keeping people fully-invested.  But with valuations soaring following a massive rally and weak third-quarter earnings season, they are dangerously high and portend great downside risk.  Stock topping valuations abound.

Since investing is all about buying low then selling high, the price paid for any investment is everything.  Buy good companies at cheap prices, and you’ll multiply your wealth over time.  But buying those very same good companies at expensive prices radically stunts future gains.  While cheap investments have great potential to soar as traders recognize their inherent value, expensive ones have already exhausted their upside.

And it’s valuations, not absolute stock prices, that define cheap and expensive.  Valuations are where stock prices are trading relative to their underlying corporate earnings streams.  The less investors pay in terms of stock price for each dollar of profits, the greater their ultimate returns.  Valuations are most often expressed in price-to-earnings-ratio terms, with stock prices divided by underlying corporate earnings per share.

This concept is so easy to understand, yet the vast majority of investors ignore it.  Imagine purchasing a house for a rental property that has expected annual rental income of $30k.  How much would you be willing to pay for it?  If you can get it for $210k, 7x earnings, it will pay for itself in just 7 years.  That’s a great deal.  But if that same house is priced at $630k, 21x, it will take far too long just to recoup the initial cost.

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US Stock Bubble Bursting As The US Fed Begins To Shrink Its Balance Sheet

By IM Vronsky – Re-Blogged From http://www.Gold-Eagle.com

All serious students of economics well know there are several factors that can inflate stock values…and even cause them to soar beyond common sense and corresponding fundamentals. However, there is one factor that dwarfs all others in its disproportionate material effect on pumping up stock prices beyond all historical and reasonable metrics:  AND THAT IS EXCESSIVE GROWTH IN THE FED’S BALANCE SHEET. 

One must recall that the S&P500 Stock Index suffered a bear market loss from 2007-2008…including the first two months of 2009.  During this bear market the S&P500 plunged well more than 55% by the time it finally bottomed in first week of March 2009.  Subsequently, the Fed relentlessly pumped up its Balance Sheet…with a view to stem the horrific two year rout in US stock prices.

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Fed’s Stock Levitation Failing

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

The US stock markets just suffered an extraordinary plunge, shocking traders out of their complacency psychosis.  This cast the foundational premise behind recent years’ incredible stock-market levitation into serious doubt.  Traders are finally starting to question whether central banks can indeed manipulate stock markets higher indefinitely.  Any wavering in this faith has very bearish implications for stock prices.

Less than two weeks ago, the US’s flagship S&P 500 stock index (SPX) was up above 2100.  It finished August’s middle trading day just 1.3% below the latest record highs from late May.  At the time, the Wall Street analysts were overwhelmingly bullish and saw nothing but clear sailing ahead.  Predictions for the SPX ending this year above 2250 were ubiquitous, and retail investors were urged to aggressively buy stocks.

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List of IMF and BIS Systemic Risk Warnings

Re-Blogged From http://lonestarwhitehouse.blogspot.com

Over the past year we have documented numerous warnings which the IMF and the Bank for International Settlements (BIS) have issued in regards to risks that exist to the stability of the global financial system. Some of the warnings come directly from IMF and BIS officials and publications. One comes from a speech by BIS General Manager Jaime Caruana. Others come from articles appearing on the IMF Direct blog. One is a link to former IMF Peter Doyle who says despite issuing risk warnings, the IMF has failed in providing early warnings for systemic crisis.

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Investment Legends Warn Of A Systemic Event

By Graham Summers – Re-Blogged From http://www.Gold-Eagle.com

More and more insiders are warning of a potential systemic event. The first sign of real trouble concerned a number of investment legends choosing to close shop and return investors’ capital.

The first real titan to bow out was Stanley Druckenmiller. Druckenmiller maintained average annual gains of nearly 30% for 30 years. He is arguably one of if not the greatest investor of the last three decades.  In 2010, he chose to close shop, foregoing billions in management fees.

Druckenmiller was not alone. In 2011, investment legend Carl Icahn closed his hedge fund to outside investors. Again, here was an investment legend who could lock in billions in investment management fees choosing to close up shop.  He has since stated he is “extremely worried” about stocks.

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NYSE Margin Debt At An All-Time Record High Heralds An Impending Stocks Crash

By Doug Short – Re-Blogged From http://www.Silvr-Phoenix500.com

The astonishing surge in leverage (i.e. NYSE Margin Debt) in late 1999 peaked in March 2000, the same month that the S&P500 hit its all-time daily high, although the highest monthly close for that year was five months later in August. A similar surge NYSE Margin Debt began in 2006, peaking in July 2007, three months before the market peak…and subsequent crash.

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Warren Buffett Predicting Upcoming Stock Market Crash

When it comes to investing in the stock market, we’re told to follow the smart money. Who might that be? The most influential investors/businessmen in America today are Warren Buffett, John Paulson, and George Soros. Their investing acumen has helped them amass billions of dollars and millions of followers.

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SPX Topping Valuations

Here at US-Issues.com, we deal with “Political Issues of Economic Importance.” Most Americans own stocks, either directly or through some kind of retirement plan. For them, whether stocks will be continuing to go up or will start to head down is of exceptional importance. The fact that market ups and downs are influenced greatly by government policy also makes this a political issue. Please enjoy this piece from Adam Hamilton.

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Guest Post by Adam Hamilton

The prevailing valuations in the lofty US stock markets are increasingly becoming a bone of contention.  Wall Street calmly asserts stocks are fairly valued or even cheap, since it has a huge vested interest in keeping people fully-invested.  But a growing chorus of dissenters is disputing that idyllic notion, warning that stock valuations are very high and portend great downside risk.  Indeed, topping valuations abound.

Since investing is all about buying low and selling high, the price paid for any investment is everything.  Buy good companies at cheap prices, and you’ll multiply your wealth over time.  But buying those very same good companies at expensive prices radically stunts future gains.  While cheap investments have great potential to

Continue reading