Where the Stock Market Will End 2019

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Yesterday we ventured a cowardly 2019 forecast, in humble recognition of our erring psychic vision.

Markets would rise, we soothsaid — or fall — or end the year precisely where they began.

We likewise predicted the economy would advance, retreat or jog in place.

Some readers denounced our abject cowardice.

Take your stand upon one hill or the other, they thundered. But take your stand:

“Make a call,” demanded one reader, Michael by name. “We are counting on you to make actual predictions…”

“Please do not waste my time with something that says nothing,” argued another reader, Richard.

A third — Gary — believes our dish of applesauce actually diminished his cognitive powers:

“I think I lost IQ points in reading the article… So you know nothing…. Why publish it?”

Our character thus slandered, today we summon our best blood — “not the blood of our finger but the blood of our heart”…

And come out flat-footed with a 2019 forecast guaranteed to keel you over.

First we train our sights on a far more immediate vista — today’s market activity.

But perhaps it is best we not…

The Dow Jones hemorrhaged another 660 crimson points today.

The S&P lost another 62. The Nasdaq shed 202 dreadful points — a 3% trouncing.

What accounted for today’s thunder and lightning?

A falling Apple, primarily.

Apple slashed its quarterly revenue forecast late yesterday — for the first time in over 15 years.

CEO Tim Cook cited an “unforeseen” slowdown in the Chinese economy.

And so a bellwether of global economic conditions presents a distressing omen. Explains Greg McKenna, markets strategist at McKenna Macro:

That Tim Cook and his company mentioned China as the reason behind the downturn in the company’s outlook seemed to hit exactly the pressure point traders and investors were already alarmed over. 

Apple stock plunged 10% today… incidentally.

But it was not Apple alone that frightened the horses today…

The Institute for Supply Management reports that U.S. manufacturing has plunged to a 15-month low.

Manufacturing sentiment also suffered its largest one-month drop since October 2008 — when the financial crisis was in full blast.

On that note…

We are reliably informed that global liquidity is evaporating at its fastest clip since 2007–08.

According to analyst Michael Howell of the CrossBorder Capital blog, global liquidity has slipped some 25% below its long-term trend.

The Federal Reserve is driving the business.

It is tightening financial conditions far more than generally realized… once we account for quantitative tightening.

Howell estimates the “true” fed funds rate is not the official 2.5% — but closer to 5%.

“In other words,” says he, “tight liquidity conditions are equivalent to the Fed undertaking around 20 rate hikes rather than the nine it has so far implemented this cycle.”

Thus the ground is laid for another 1997 Asian crisis — though not limited to Asia:

Unlike the 200708 crisis, which was more about a broken banking system involving the sudden collapse of leverage among overextended banks and shadow banks, the current credit squeeze looks more like the 199798 Asian crisis when central banks, led by the U.S. Fed, tightened the supply of primary liquidity… This time around, financial markets are probably even more interconnected and more global. Consequently, this could be an Asian crisis-like sell-off, but one not only confined to Asia.

Perhaps someone should alert Jerome Powell?

But to return to our thumping market prediction…

We have suggested previously that the Federal Reserve’s most recent rate hike may have taken the fed funds rate over the “neutral rate.”

That is, interest rates are no longer “accommodative.”

Nor are they merely neutral.

They begin to drag and tug.

History suggests recession or market crisis is on tap six–12 months after rates cross the neutral line.

Furthermore…

The stock market generally turns in its worst performance six months preceding a recession.

Well, it has pointed south since early October — for precisely three months, that is.

At present speed and heading, the economy is on course for recession by April perhaps.

Unless, that is, the stock market finds a fair wind beforehand.

We have further furnished evidence that the “true” money supply is falling violently (see linked article for details).

Chart

Let the record show:

Recession or credit crisis followed previous occasions when the true money supply decelerated at the present clip:

Chart

The chart suggests trouble starting in March.

In conclusion… we have strong circumstantial evidence pointing to recession sometime this year.

March 1 — incidentally — is when Trump’s hard trade deadline with China lapses.

If no accord is reached by March 1, the trade war resumes at full pitch.

Mixing it all together, let us proceed to our rafter-shaking 2019 forecast:

Trump realizes the extent to which his presidency hinges upon a thriving economy and stock market.

He will therefore settle upon a deal and declare resounding victory.

The stock market will rally hard on the news.

But it will be short-lived.

Political uncertainty will play the devil with markets…

The Mueller investigation will soon come out.

We hazard it will reveal no evidence whatsoever of Russian collusion.

But give a man nearly two years and millions of dollars to find skeletons in closets… and he will find skeletons in closets.

Especially, we may add, if he ransacks the closets of a horse trader like Donald John Trump.

Once the Democrat-controlled House impeaches Trump — yes, that is correct — exhausted markets will lose remaining steam.

This will drag on much of the summer.

Trump will survive — the Senate will not convict him of charges — but the process will leave him severely diminished.

Meantime, markets will confront the reality of drying liquidity… and economic growth will slow to a glacier’s pace.

The economy will finally be in recession by December.

The stock market will likewise end 2019 sunk in a bear market…

The Dow Jones will end the year at roughly 18,000.

The S&P will hold above 2,000 — but barely.

The Nasdaq will take a good 40% lacing from today’s levels.

Gold will challenge $1,500.

There is your preview of 2019, down to the last jot and tittle, down to the last decimal point — and you can just take it to the bank.

Never you mind our last prediction. Or the prediction prior. Or…

Regards,

Brian Maher
Managing editor, The Daily Reckoning

The post Where the Stock Market Will End 2019 appeared first on Daily Reckoning.

Your New Year’s Plan: Top 3 Lessons from 2018

This post Your New Year’s Plan: Top 3 Lessons from 2018 appeared first on Daily Reckoning.

Around this time of year, it’s a good idea to stop and look back, taking stock of all the incredible and difficult things that happened over the last 365 days.

The Internet is full of “Top 2018” lists that span the best books, movies, music, celebrity moments etc. to allow you to reflect on the past year.

This week, I’m looking forward to the top trends and predictions for 2019, and how you can position yourself to make it your best year yet.

There’s no way to know for certain what will happen in the new year. As we know from previous experience, things can drastically change overnight. But there are a few trends we will probably see carrying over from 2018.

1) Embrace The Tech

I for one am very excited to see what technology advancements 2019 brings. For some, technology spells doom as robots threaten to replace workers and cut jobs. But for entrepreneurs, technology promises to address problems and make running a business easier than ever.

As an entrepreneur, using the wide array of tools out there to help you improve or create your business is one of the best ways to excel in 2019. Make it a part of your New Year’s resolutions to incorporate further learning and tech adoption into your financial plan.

2) President Trump’s Economic Outlook

2018 was a year for some major economic growth in the U.S., largely due to Trump’s tax cuts, consumer confidence, and companies re-investing in their business.

According to many economists, the economy is expected to slow down, and as financial conditions tighten, the impact of the tax cuts passed will fade.

Some economists are expecting more than a slowdown and are saying there’s a 50% chance of a recession by 2020.

Again, we can’t know for sure what will happen, and things are always liable to drastic change. That’s why maintaining a strong financial knowledge base will be the best way to navigate the coming year. Don’t wait around until the government implements new financial policies. Take charge of your financial plan now and position yourself for a great year.

3) Debt Will Increase To An All-time High

Debt has been on the rise for years. 2018 was a record high for consumer credit card debt, and I have a feeling the problem is only going to get worse.

According to nerdwallet.com, “Credit card balances carried from month to month continue to inch up, reaching $420.22 billion in late 2018, according to NerdWallet’s annual analysis of U.S. household debt. That’s an increase of about 5% over last year. And for Americans carrying that debt, the impact is significant.”

Today, it’s easier than ever to make money running your own business or investing in assets, but it’s also easier to get into debt. Still, bad debt is not inevitable. There’s no reason you shouldn’t be able to get out and stay out of debt. Remember the two rules of staying out of bad debt: Don’t swipe the small stuff and credit keeps charging.

Go into 2019 with open eyes regarding your spending habits and debt. Are you carrying over debt from last year? What’s your plan to pay it off? Do you have a clean slate? What steps will you take to avoid bad debt? Ask yourself these questions and get your plan together early.

What does this mean for you?

Instead of wringing your hands in fear or sitting back comfortably because you think everything will go your way, take 2019 into your own hands. Start crafting a strong financial plan that can sustain you no matter what happens.

Start by identifying what you hope to achieve. I find the act of physically writing down my goals is the best way to make my dreams a reality. Putting my vision on paper gets it out in the open. Once it’s written down, I’m committed to it.

As we all know, it’s all too easy to fall off the wagon with our New Year’s resolutions. That’s why you have to set up goals that in turn set you up for success. Setting SMART goals with the new year approaching is more important than ever. Remember, SMART goals are: Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Timely.

When your goal meets these five characteristics, it becomes much easier for you to stick to them. And remember, every goal should be working you towards a greater vision of where you want to be.

Another way to make sticking to your goals easier is by getting others involved. Whether it’s your spouse, your kids, your friends, or a mentor, you can find a partner to help keep you dedicated to your goals. We all know it’s easier to go to the gym when we have a friend going with us. The same holds true for true freedom in your finances.

With your goals in mind, you can start making a list of what you’ll need to attain them. Maybe you need increased understanding of real estate. Maybe you need to understand how to invest for cash flow. By knowing where you are, and where you want to go, it should quickly become apparent the things you must learn to get there. Increasing your financial education is the first step.

Why I’m optimistic for 2019…

This year for many people was full of ups and downs. The presence of disruptive technology led to extensive job cuts, not to mention a still recovering economy, political turmoil, higher interest rates, and more.

But despite a less-than-ideal landscape, the people coming out of 2018 on top are the ones who have a strong base of financial education.

It was confirmed this year that financial education is more important than ever. With every twist and turn, every “impossible” act, every astounding technology that revolutionized the market, only those with a deeper financial understanding, and the right mindset, came out ahead.

While the masses were panicking over every setback, those on the path to freedom kept their eyes on the long journey ahead, never wavering or allowing the day-to-day challenges to deter them.

Education breeds confidence. And in these ever-changing times, confidence is more important than ever.

Anything can happen in 2019. To the glass-half-empty folks out there, that might be a little scary. But to the rest of us, that’s great news. Anything can happen, like getting out of debt, starting your business, quitting your job as an employee and making the shift to business owner and investor, purchasing your first asset, and so much more. If you haven’t started the journey to complete independence, 2019 is your time. You just have to take it.

Regards,

Robert Kiyosaki

Robert Kiyosaki
Editor, Rich Dad Poor Dad Daily

The post Your New Year’s Plan: Top 3 Lessons from 2018 appeared first on Daily Reckoning.