A Journal of Independent Research, Analysis,
 Opinion and Insight

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Attention Paid-Up Subscribers: To read or print the entire current issue as a single document, use the "easyprint" feature in the "Nav bar" to the right to open it, or any of WOWS' individual features, as an Adobe PDF file, and then print it. Alternatively, you can click "more" at the bottom of this paragraph and then click the red Adobe icon that appears. Your second click will download the full issue .pdf file of WOWS' latest issue to your computer, a process that -- depending on the file size and your connection speed -- might take more than the blink of an eye. Then, depending on preferences you've set on your device, it will either open automatically or show up in your downloads folder, waiting to be opened. [More]
06 19 2020 WOWS Listening In - Lakshman Achuthan- Recovery or Setback?
Watching ECRI's WTI for Signs Bullwhip Effect Sparking or Sputtering
Back in early April, when Lakshman Achuthan’s declaration that the Covid Crisis had plunged the country into “a nasty, bitter but likely short-lived  recession” penetrated my lockdown bunker, I worried a bit, for my friend. “Likely short? What’s he smoking in isolation,” I pondered.

Turns out I should have known better. First, Lakshman’s studied and cautious optimism was worlds away from the speculative abandon we’re seeing play out daily in the junkiest precincts of global markets. Casino capitalism, LIVE! [More]
Market Madness
Need More Evidence? Keep Reading And Learn!
6/19/20 8:00 AM
By Anatole Kaletsky
Nobody knows whether John Maynard Keynes actually said “the market can stay irrational longer than you can stay solvent.” But anyone old enough to remember the 1998-2000 dotcom bubble will know that these words can sometimes account for seemingly inexplicable stock market behavior more convincingly than any analysis of valuations, monetary policy or economic data.

Those of us who still believe that the new bull market is unjustified by any economic or financial fundamentals (see Four Reasons To Fade The Rebound) can stop racking our brains with complicated conspiracy theories and monetary rationalizations. [More]

RBA Shifts Assets, Adding Some Cyclicals as Fundamental Change
6/19/20 7:00 AM
By Richard Bernstein
A perma-bull is always bullish. A perma-bear is always bearish. [More]

Wall Street Gambles,
Main Street Plunges, Amid Anything But Normal Business Cycle
6/19/20 6:00 AM
By Albert M Wojnilower
Protest marches in the daytime, curfews and riots at night, pandemic day and night, empty and useless school buildings, shopping centers, showplaces, and stadiums, profound unemployment — these are not symptoms of an ordinary business cycle but of a much deeper upheaval.

Some people probably think it odd that stock prices seem to have been ignoring the current calamity. [More]

Rebalancing Act
Fast Traders Feasting On Retail Order Boom
6/19/20 5:00 AM
By Tim Quast
Is retail money creating a Pandemic Bubble? Sort of. Really, it’s Fast Traders turning those orders into clouds of squid ink. [More]

The Deflationary Abyss
In Great Melt, There Will Be No Attempt To Reverse Stimulus
6/19/20 4:00 AM
By Albert Edwards
Clearly investors can ignore many things, including collapsing GDP and profits on hopes of a V-shaped recovery and a return to normality. But one thing the market will find far more difficult to ignore is that for all the fiscal and monetary largesse, the US economy has already slipped into outright deflation. [More]

U.S.-China Trade War
What Is The Investment Cost Of The Geopolitical Jousting?
6/19/20 3:00 AM
By Mary Amiti, Sang Hoon Kong, and David E Weinstein
Starting in early 2018, the US government imposed tariffs on over $300 billion of US imports from China, increasing the average tariff rate from 2.7 percent to 17.5 percent. Much of the escalation in tariffs occurred in the second and third quarters of 2019. [More]

Rumpelstiltskin At The FED
Recycling An Analysis From April 2016, When Gold Was $1,250
6/19/20 2:00 AM
By Harley Bassman
As our title alludes, I am about to spin a monetary policy fairy tale, a fantasy that could certainly never occur … except for the small detail that it’s happened before.

First I must remind you there are only two avenues out of a debt crisis — default or inflate — and inflation is just a slow-motion default. [More]

Megaphone Time
Chart Pattern Implies Out-of-Control Speculation
6/19/20 8:20 AM
By Blaze Tankersley
A few weeks back, I mentioned we were going to have to have the SPX megaphone discussion before long and now seems like a good time. The emergence of a clear and heavy outside reversal week last week (appropriately placed through the major stop levels while still short of the high) is exactly what would be expected in this pattern, potentially now manifesting. [More]

Got Gold???
Turning Points In Gold/Stock Ratio As Timing Tool
6/19/20 7:20 AM
By Cornerstone Macro
Turning points in the Gold/Stock Ratio have coincided with turning points in market history: the stock market reached historic highs in 1929, 1966, and 1999 as the ratio reached a low. Conversely, the stock market was at historic lows in 1932 and 1980 as the ratio hit a high. [More]

Trump Bump?
Most Say Wealth Hasn’t Improved During Trump’s Presidency
6/19/20 6:20 AM
By Virginia Van Natta
The “Trump Bump” hasn’t benefited most Americans. Fewer than one in six say their personal finances have improved since Donald Trump became president. [More]

Volatility On Tap
Next Intermin Low Due Near September...
6/19/20 5:20 AM
By Woody Dorsey
EQUITY STRATEGY: The profile remains for an, “Interim low due towards September. Next major low due near late 2021.” The robust short covering recovery generated extreme Ebullience and Complacency B4 ending on 6/8. [More]

An Inconvenient Fact:
Private Equity Returns And The Billionaire Factory
6/19/20 8:00 AM
By Ludovic Phalippou
Private Equity (PE) funds have returned about the same as public equity indices since at least 2006. [More]

Mapping COVID-19
By Geography, Race And Income
6/19/20 7:00 AM
By Rajashri Chakrabarti and William Nober
In this post, we study whether (and how) the spread of COVID-19 across the United States has varied by geography, race, income, and population density. [More]

Sifting Tea Leaves
Virus Impact Forecast For Business Sales, Jobs; Not Pretty
6/19/20 6:00 AM
By Jose Maria Barrero, Nicholas Bloom, and Steven J Davis
Drawing on firm-level expectations at a one-year forecast horizon in the Survey of Business Uncertainty (SBU), we construct novel, forward-looking reallocation measures for jobs and sales. [More]

Acute Observations, June 19, 2020
Perceptive Commentary from June 1-19, 2020
6/19/20 8:00 AM
Justin Urquhart-Stewart
So where are we today? Well, first ignore all of those who say we have seen this all before — they haven’t, at least not in their lifetime. We are now dealing with a very unpleasant concoction of poisonous issues which economies and markets are going to have to manage their way through, and it will take time. A V-shaped recovery? More like a two-fingered gesture. [More]