I’ve been trading the stock market for nearly thirty years, virtually non-stop. Today (that is, Monday, August 24) easily ranks in the top five strangest, craziest days in the thousands upon thousands of trading days I’ve ever witnessed. I felt like I was entering a cage of gorillas that had just ingested a large quantity of PCP. It felt dangerous and really, really unpredictable.
As I mentioned on my lengthy Saturday post:
I expect (and, again, hope – – because, God forgive me, I’m actually long five ETFs in size right now) we get a meaningful relief rally, carrying us up to the psychologically-important 17,000 level. At that point, please don’t be anywhere between me and my keyboard, because I am going to be shorting anything with a ticker symbol in size.
Greetings from my children’s play room, from where I have decided to compose a very long post to try to relieve myself of the aching burden of thoughts borne from recent market action. I should be feeling triumphant, but I feel deeply dissatisfied (which is not surprising, knowing my personality) while, at the same time, full of anticipation. Slope is, among other things, a means by which I expunge tortured thoughts, so I will do that here and now.
I’m not particularly talented, but there’s one thing I can do better than anyone I’ve ever met: see patterns earlier, and better, than anyone else.
I offer you Exhibit A in the form of this post from January 27th, in which I introduced the “Ichthus” Jesus pattern, which exists nowhere else except in the tortured mind of TImothy Knight.
I’ve been writing this blog for so long (over a decade), I sometimes despair that my uninteresting life will stop yielding anything worth writing about. Yes, the blog is principally about technical analysis of stocks, but I like to share anecdotes from time to time, and every time I compose a good anecdote I figure that, welp, that’s the last shareable morsel of my life. So far, though, I wind up thinking of another one, sooner or later.
So here I am again.
Although I’m a dyed-in-the-wool chartist, I appreciate when people make thoughtful conjectures about what’s going to happen to a company, a financial instrument, or a country based on their broad observations. Remember, “speculate” is derived from the Latin verb speculare, which means to observe. Successful investors notice things.
As such, I’d like to share something I’ve noticed. It first started back on July 29th, when I got an email from Elon Musk (errr, not personally, but it a spammy kind of way). It started off like this:
I’ve written about American Girl before, such as this post. For those unacquainted with American Girl, it started off as a doll-based means for girls to learn about different periods of U.S. history, but it has developed into a phenomenal retail success story of overpriced Chinese-made junk sold in branded stores in high-end shopping malls (like, oh, say, the Stanford Shopping Center). It’s a big deal for the 9-12 year old crowd.
I realized that our mentally-challenged, differently-abled bullish friends will refuse to accept it for a long, long time, but their welfare-sponsored bull-run ended last December. The breakdown has been subtle since then, and the Silicon Valley stocks that are keeping my house valued at preposterous levels just keep shooting higher (GOOGL, etc.)
But the cold fact of the matter is that there’s rot beneath the surface, and the failure of JNK today – – a chart I’ve been watching with great zeal and interest – – seals the deal. A major bear market truly has started, and we’re going to see the fraud from the past six years unwind in a glorious, albeit inconsistent, fashion.