I'll be Hosting Varney & Co on Fox Business Network 9:15 a.m.
Hooptie: Any car that meets the following:
A. driver must enter car through passenger side
B. three different brand and size tires - 3 of them missing hubcap
C. exhaust is held up by half a clothes hanger - other half replaces the antenna
D. backfires every three blocks - loudest backfire being when car is turned off
E. must open door at drive through as windows don't roll down
F. you only get one AM station and the tape deck eats all tapes inserted
G. can't open the glove box as the whole thing will fall out
H. if you let go of steering wheel while driving you'll make a u-turn
I. must manually move blinker lever up and down as it no longer blinks on its own
J. must keep one foot on brake and one on accelerator when at a complete stop
K. has had the same temporary registration sticker in the window for the last 18 months
L. has all the above issues but still has a $200 professional tint job
Just like that, the market seems to be turning lower, and all of a sudden the Dow is at an all-time high. The fact is Friday's session might have been the most significant this year. It was the first time stocks rallied on "good" news after first tumbling over tapering fears.
It's true once you get beyond the headline of 204,000 net new jobs, that good jobs report loses more and more luster until it's really a rusty jalopy, not unlike the economy it serves as a proxy for... but it's running and may be gaining steam.
Of course this brings up the dilemma of Fed monetary policy. More than likely the next regime at the Fed will look at 6.0% unemployment as a target understanding that even with Friday's number participants fled in droves.
932,000 not in labor force lifted total to 91.5 million
Participation rate -0.4% to 62.8%
Part time for economic reasons +124,000 to 8.1 million
But, this looks like the classic jobless recovery... slow and unsteady but reflecting the resolve and smarts of big business. Like I've said from day one, this is an economy built to last. That said, anything that's been built can be un-built or allowed to become a rust bucket. In this case America has become a hooptie economy and this is its version of burning rubber. It ain't pretty but it's moving in the right direction.
The thing is the economy is not moving fast enough to get the Fed to put the brakes on its runaway train of accommodation.
Shoeshine Boy Selloff?
All of a sudden the Great rotation out of bonds into stocks has ratcheted up a notch and the experts say this presages a massive sell off. Ever since the time that shoeshine boy asked Joe Kennedy about a hot stock and he promptly went to his office to sell everything, the sight of individuals in the market has been seen as a red flag. Of course, it is not something that happens instantaneously. The fact is people get burned during investment cycles and find themselves selling at the low, licking wounds during the rebound and finally giving it "one more shot" near the top.
But they are trapped in this vicious cycle because of the parabolic nature of the top. Sure, money is flowing into equity mutual funds (see chart) and ETFs but it's not a gusher. Right now people are chasing performance but the part that keeps individuals locked into the market even when there are warning signs is late-comers making a boatload of money. I think the contrarian label is misleading and unfortunate, as it will only keep even more individuals from investing or waiting even longer. This is a lifetime endeavor.
On that note, most pros have missed this rally, too, and they are the ones that could be the new shoe shine boys. When they catch up or play the games of buying hot names right before statements go out to give the impression of being ahead of the curve, that could be the sell signal. Either way I think we're okay for the moment.