Friday, May 7, 2010

The Mood around New York

To most market observers David Rosenberg of the Toronto-based money management firm, Gluskin Sheff, is one of the most savvy market strategists around. For those who are interested, he sends out a highly informative daily eletter to anyone who signs up on the Gluskin Sheff site. I recommend it highly. Link here.

Anyway, being a market strategist is not just about numbers and charts. It also involves getting a feel for the mood of a place. Today while writing about what he assures us is the end of the cyclical bull market that began a year ago March, Rosenberg offered a description of New York City, then and now. Then would be during the worst phase of the financial crisis. Now would be now.

In his words: "Back in 2008, I recall marketing in midtown and walking along 5th Avenue, I recall that nobody was carrying any bags or boxes and that everyone looked catatonic, as if they were on Prozac. In the last six weeks I have been to the city twice, and both times it seemed to me that everyone was walking around as though they were on heroin. Smiles everywhere, and a general sense that things were good, though nobody really seemed to know why."

I'm not sure that his opinion of the effect of Prozac will help Rosenberg with his psychiatry boards, but sometimes outsiders can take the pulse of a place much better than those who live there and who are part of the ambient mood. To sum it up, to his contrarian mind, New York's happiness feels drug induced. That calls for caution.


Anonymous said...

A Bull Market lasts a year now?

My own prediction:

The market remains flat as we overcome our fears of insta-collapse. As soon as traders realize Britain has a coalition government that cannot impose fiscal discipline on the Pound as the Euro collapses with Italy, Greece, Spain and Portugal (taking Germany down), the Dow will tank to about 9500 by mid-June. Maybe 8500 by August.

Oil prices will drop. (Nevermind the summer switch-over to gourmet summer blends of gasoline later this month).

Good: I need to buy in low now if I ever want a chance to retire in 25 years....


Stuart Schneiderman said...

Thanks, Gray, for opening up this issue. I wrote a bit more about my views in the next post.

I am of the "sell the rallies" school on this one. If this is the next phase in a secular bear market, then we should see a retest of 6500.

If it succeeds we will have put in a double bottom and perhaps we will have a new bull market.

If it fails, then we are all in serious trouble.