Monday August 20, 20127:41 AM CST
Page C1 Investors have shown their disdain by withdrawing their money from stock mutual funds, as the headline stats on page A1 this Market Rally Gets No Respect. So where is the money going, still to municipal bonds and money market funds. The article of course goes on to speculate about what the FED will do, but investors will be dragged back into the stock market as it completes 9.7% six week rally.
Everybody hates GM Department
A few weeks ago the media had negative articles on the difficulty of changing the GM culture and the money losing OPEL unit in Germany. Today a front page A1 article reports on the success GM has had with china's SAIC Motor corp. On page B1 negotiations near close on shortening the hours at OPEL, cutting costs. GM rallied 8% in two days last week. GM earned $7.6 B last year, $1.5 B with SAIC.
Another Social Media Darling Sinks
The market continues to exhibit Year 2000 like disappointment with the latest stock market fad. Groupon Investors Give Up, Page A1. Like the dot.coms mimicking paper catalog sales, Groupon was nothing more than a local discount coupon, nothing new under the sun as they say.
The Gathering Storm of Discontent and War Clouds
The only thing that can save our daughter, my wife, and all of us is a revolution, so that's what we'll have.
Husband of Pussy Riot Defendand
The WSJ ran an editorial noting the US lack of response. On the preceding page A9 is a photo of chess champion Gary Gasparov being carried away, literally, by police from the trial. Note his comment
Such a brazen step (after being beaten up by the police Gasparov was criminally investigated for biting a police officer) should raise alarms by the leaders of the Free World are clearly capable of sleeping through any wake-up call. Worse the US called the sentence disproportionate as though free speech deserves jail time, which tells us a lot about how this Administration views dissent.
And on page A 7 don't miss Russian activists sued Madonna for $10.5M for her support of gay rights at a concert in St. Petersburg.
And in this country Gibson Guitar gets by with a mere $350,000 fine in the furor over our own Putin type excess in raiding this distinguished manufacturer.
This weekend I featured a stroll through the popular titles at a bookstore. We noted that American Sniper and Sniper Elite glorified wars that were no doubt training grounds for the real mayhem yet to come in the next bear market. Better Off Without Them advocates splitting up the USA, something that did happen in Yugoslavia. Throw Them all Out echoes the frustration of the husband quoted above. Sociocnomics holds that mood lags social action. There is plenty of negative mood out there to fuel the next world wide bear market.
WW II in Asia began with a Japanese Chinese confrontation. The South China Sea's Gathering on page A11 notes that the Chinese are sending garrisons of soldiers to extend their claim over the entire South China Sea. The US of course has done nothing which is the point of James Webb's article.
At this point I was going to transition to make the socionomic point that fifth waves are often accompanied by nostalgic look backs at previous eras. This is even more true than I might have thought. I planned to mention the 1966 release, The San Pebbles about a US gunboat in China in 1926. And lo and behold, a retrospective The Making of the Sand Pebbles was released in 2007. I learned two things from that movie. Never send one ship in harm's way (remember The Pueblo) and never take a date to a movie in in which Steve McQueen gets killed, what a downer.
And moving to my original idea of retro, Hollywood has obliged with movies based on TV series, like Mission Impossible. In addition 1930s origin comics have morphed into blockbusters featuring Batman and the 1961 creation of Spiderman. Now what else for aging Baby Boomers but Grandad as the action hero.
Expendables 2 did $29.8 M displacing Bourne Legacy. The cast includes just about every 1980s action star from 65 year old Arnold to 72 year young Chuck Norris. The real outlet though for such fare is overseas, the first Expendables took in a whopping $274 M. Arnold's affairs in the US are no barrier to his fans overseas. The glorification of war is a top of the market social focus. Indeed we are playing out the same sort of Viet Nam era scenario. Finally disgusted with the inability to tell the good guys from the bad, a cynical saying emerged, Kill Them All, Let God Sort it Out, concerning Viet Nam. Now the same sort of thing is occurring in Afghanistan as supposedly friendly Afghans attack the foreign forces there presumably to bring peace to the country. Once gain, the history of social mood repeats.
Apparently this series takes its name from the 1945 John Wayne film, They Were Expendable. As we say, social mood repeats but rarely remembers.
Mondays have been the weakest day of the week for stocks for several weeks now. Today seems no exception. I did notice that Spanish and italian bonds yields have fallen to six week lows. The quiet Euro rally continues.