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I have a gap in my work schedule this morning as we wait for the Fed this afternoon, so I thought I’d do a quick update on the inflection point that SPX has reached today, and talk about why the still very pervasive faith in the power of the Fed to keep asset prices up should not just be dismissed as irrational.
For me I look at the Fed and I know that I don’t see what most others seem to see, as I see a track record of successively larger failures that have created a Fed seemingly capable of trying anything to try to keep asset prices high, for fear that a serious decline in asset prices might unleash an economic whirlwind that they could not hope to control. They have my sympathy but, based on their track record, not my respect, and here is my image choice for the Fed today. If you’re enjoying some of the great demotivational posters that I’ve been using in a lot of my recent posts, and on and off for much of the last decade, check out the author website at despair.com for some good laughs and amusing gift ideas.
I have noticed something about this rally off the crash low. It has a rhyme to it. I remember thinking to myself during the crash, and hearing other say, “It feels like the entire 2008 financial crisis is condensed into one month.”
We are seeing the something similar transpire with the bullish move off the crash low. The Fed is using the same playbook that launched the QE bull market, but at an accelerated pace.
First, let’s take a look at a chart of the history of QE that Tom McClellan posted to his Twitter feed on April 5th. You can see from the chart that the stock market nicely traced the path of QE up until 2017. Much of what transpired after 2017 was retraced during the crash.
I have a Shakespeare theme with the title today, which is a quote from Richard III. I am a lifelong Shakespeare lover and have been using some of my quarantine time watching film versions of some of his plays, of which I have about thirty or so in total, many of which were beautifully done. Over the weekend I was watching The Tempest 2011 with Helen Mirren, Macbeth 2015 with Michael Fassbender, and Roman Polanski’s Macbeth from 1971, controversially filmed just two years after the Manson Family tragically murdered Polanski’s wife Sharon Tate and their unborn child.
All good films, though I do struggle with Shakespeare’s great tragedies as I find the main protagonists very unsympathetic. Hamlet is forever looking for excuses not to act, King Lear brings ruin upon himself through his foolish actions at the start of the play but the strangest of all to my eyes is Macbeth.