Monday, November 21, 2011

Fasten your seat belts; it is going to be a bumpy ride. The markets are poised to sell off this morning for various reasons. I believe the main reason is lack of any political leadership in the US Congress. The Congress has shown no ability to get anything done and the failure of the “super” committee is another demonstration of this. I believe the markets will interpret this failure correctly as one side of the aisle will not / cannot compromise and that party is willing to do nothing rather than seek a middle ground on certain issues to get the country and the economy moving again.

Things to watch for this week:

1. Continuing search for money at MF Global. I expect it to only get worse.

2. New Government in Spain. This will be a test because an already weak economy has elected a government pledged to austerity measures believing this will create jobs in the long run. The question is how much more short term economic retrenchment the Spanish people are willing to endure.

3. Continued cut back of the Wall Street firms willingness to trade credit and the increasing volatility in prices of taxable fixed income bonds.

4. US Stock market as more market participants are giving up the ghost and looking for safe havens over the near term. I would expect commodities to rise as a safe haven trade.

The news from Washington will disappoint the market all week. To paraphrase someone “nobody will ever go broke underestimating the US Congress”.

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