Friday, September 14, 2007

S&P 500 Up 0.30, Dow Gains 17

The executive summary on what happened today in the stock market: Stocks ran in place ahead next Tuesday's Fed meeting. For the most part the same could be said of Treasurys, forex, metals and even crude where there was a modest give back.

A few after the bell developments to note:

-UAW May Call for a Strike Against GM. I wish they would, then both sides could dig in and destroy each other just to finally get it over with. But, of course, we know it's all posturing, though the mainstream media makes it feel as if the UAW has real power for the "big strike"... ohhh.. boooo to GM, scary, scary. With 4 retired union members for every presently employed union member, the UAW would have too much to lose in a protracted strike. Or, has the UAW layed in a big supply of cat food for distribution to its members?

The Wall Street Journal, clever folks that they are, went to a bookstore and bought Alan Greenspan's book ahead of its Monday release and broke a great story: Greenspan Book Criticizes Bush And Republicans.

Bloomberg story: Says Economic Policies Were Driven by Politics...
NY Times story: 'Age of Turbulence: Adventures in a New World'...

We can play the blame game and point the finger at Greenspan for a 1% fed funds rate that fostered the housing bubble (along with lax oversight), but from what I read of Greeny's new tome, we're screwed BIG TIME going forward.

It's the going forward that's important and for me Greenspan's points are well taken that decreased inflationary pressure from globalization is rapidly diminishing. The "virtuous cycle" had to come to an end at some point. Yes, it's not hard to imagine the Fed down the road in a quandry over having to push rates higher a la the Volker years because of high flying inflation, while facing major political pressures.

The dark message from Greenspan is this line about the Bush White House, "Little value was placed on rigorous economic policy debate or the weighing of long-term consequences." That sure isn't hard to imagine since it's been one big give away to every special interest for nearly the last 8 years.

But is a Hillary White House is going to do better?? Yes, we are screwed.

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