Yesterday the Dow hit a five-year high. Today it opened just 89 ticks below its all-time high. What could cause such optimism?
The sequester that takes effect Friday, which besides guaranteeing many thousand layoffs and reduction in some critical public health and research spending, illustrates in an undeniable fashion that our national government is dysfunctional. Could that be driving the stock market skyward?
The fact that our GNP grew a pathetic .01 percent in the last quarter of 2012, even before the sequester, and everyone now anticipates another government debt ceiling farce. Is that getting Wall Streeters feeling their oats?
Or perhaps the Italian election results, which along with revealing a widening disgust with a banker-driven austerity in a Europe that these days seems to benefit only bankers, is yet another signal that the united economy of Europe is an unworkable fantasy. Could that be the driver of stock market gains around the world?
The various wars in the Middle East, the big ones already going on and the even bigger ones that look like they could happen soon in a region that makes the 1913 Balkans look like Mayberry…Global warming’s effects, now too great to ignore…North Korea rattling its chains louder than ever…Other political, climactic, even growing international health worries…Could these be the underlying forces fueling such stock market optimism?
Earth to stock market. Earth to stock market. Come in please stock market. Earth bound folks in the home world want to learn your secrets.
(Michael Silverstein’s comic novel, The Bellman’s Revenge, about toilet seat-borne venereal disease and excessive parking ticketing, is available from Amazon. Also check out and support Kay Wood’s zany graphic novel about a methane threat that could destroy the earth, The Big Belch, now featured on Kickstarter.)