Saturday, December 19, 2009

10 Minute Chronology of Important US Financial Events 1800 to 2009

For me the little summary below was a great "view from 20,000 feet".  Imagine that....less than 200 years ago, the British were rampaging through Washington with troops and burning the White House.

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1800: New York's population is 60,000
1803: President Thomas Jefferson purchases Louisiana (which extended from the Mississippi to the Rocky Mountains, from Montana to New Orleans) from Napoleon, thus essentially doubling the size of the USA
1812: the USA declares war on Britain
1814: British troops storm Washington and burn the Capitol and the White House
1817: the New York Stock Exchange opens in Wall Street
1819: an economic depression hits the farmers of the south and the west
1824: only 5% of adult USA citizens vote in the presidential elections
1826: James Smithson bequeaths his fortune to founding the Smithsonian Institution "for the increase and diffusion of knowledge among men"
1837: an economic depression follows a wave of speculation
1839: Yellow fever kills 12% of Houston's population
1844: the USA has over 5,000 kms of railway (3,000 in Britain, 2,000 in Germany, 500 in France)
1851: The population of the USA is 20,067,720 free persons and 2,077,034 slaves
1854: the USA forces Japan to sign a trade agreement ("treaty of Kanagawa") which reopens Japan to foreigners after two centuries
1858: a telegraph wire is laid at the bottom of the ocean between Ireland and Canada
1858: the USA stock market crash spawns an international market crash
1859: The Carrington Solar Flare lights up the night sky and creates havoc with telegraph lines1860: Republican candidate Abraham Lincoln is elected president although he gains only 40% of the popular vote
1861: civil war erupts between the northern ("unionist") states and the southern ("confederate") states (26.2 million versus 8.1 million)
 1862: John Rockefeller founds a company to refine oil (later renamed Standard Oil)
1864: all the major powers agree at the Geneva convention on rules for the treatment of prisoners of war
Apr 1865: the Union, led by general Ulysses Grant, defeats the Confederates, slavery is abolished (13th amendment of the constitution) and blacks are given the right to vote (370,000 Union citizens and soldiers and 258,000 Confederate citizens and soldiers have died)
1865: president Lincoln is assassinated
1867: The price of oil drops to $2.40/barrel from the peak of $13.75 a barrel
1869: Goldman Sachs is founded by German immigrant Marcus Goldman and (in 1882) Goldman's son-in-law Samuel Sachs
1871: the National Rifle Association is founded
1873: an economic depression causes rise in unemployment and bankruptcies\
1873: the USA adopts the gold standard
1876: General Custer and his troops are massacred by Sioux Indians at Little Big Horn
1882: the USA bans Chinese immigrants for ten years and forbids existing Chinese immigrants from becoming USA citizens
1885: white miners kill 28 Chinese workers in Wyoming
1890: The work week in the USA is 60 hours
1890: Congress passes the Anti-Trust Act to protect against monopolies
1892: John Muir founds the "Sierra Club", the first environmental organizations
1893: an economic depression causes unemployment and bankruptcies
1900: A six-room house costs $3,000 to buy
1900: Life expectancy in the USA is 47.3
1900: the USA's population is 76 million
1902: Willis Carrier invents the air conditioner
1902: a female journalist, Ida-Minerva Tarbell, exposes Standard Oil's dubious practices
1908: William D'Arcy discovers oil in Iran
1909: The USA forces the dissolution of Standard Oil, an event that creates Chevron, Mobil, Amoco, etc
1910-1911 Stock Market Panic after enforcement started of the 1890 Sherman Anti-Monopoly Act-- "Corrupt business is good profitable business :-)"
1913: John Rockefeller is worth $212 billions, 1/44th of the USA economy, and establishes the Rockefeller Foundation "to promote the well-being of mankind throughout the world"
1913: Ford installs the first assembly line (at Highland Park)
1913: 2% of USA citizens control 60% of the national product (Morgan and Rockefeller alone control 20%)
1914: World War I begins
1914: The Federal income tax is introduced
1916: Merrill Lynch is founded
1916: William Boeing founds a company to manufacture airplanes
1918: an epidemics of influenza kills 20 million people worldwide (500,000 in the USA)
1918: the first world war ends: 2 million Russians, 1.8 million Germans, 1.3 million French, 1.1 million Austro-Hungarians, 0.9 million Britons, 0.6 million Turks and 0.5 million Italians are dead.
1920: alcohol is outlawed ("Prohibition")
1924: boom of the stock market
1927: Pan American World Airways is founded
1928: first daily passenger flight between Los Angeles and San Francisco
1929: Herbert Hoover is elected president
1929: stock markets crash around the world ("great depression")
1929: the richest 1% owns 40% of the nation's wealth, while workers' productivity has increased 43% since 1919
1930: the Bank of Italy is renamed Bank of America
1930: the GDP of the USA falls 9.4% from the year before and unemployment reaches 8.7%
1931: The price of oil plunges to $0.15/barrel
1931: the Empire State Building, the tallest building in the world of all times, opens in New York
1931: Gambling is legalized in Las Vegas
1932: between april 8 and july 8 stocks fall 34%
1932: 10,000 banks have failed since 1929, GDP has dropped 31% since 1929, the stock market has lost almost 90% of its value from boom to bust, and unemployment reaches 23.6%
1933: the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp is created to insure deposits in banks and thrift institutions
1933: the Prohibition is repealed

1936: The economic ideas of John Maynard Keynes are applied in the USA
1940: Karl Pabst invents the jeep
1941: Japanese attack Pearl Harbor (Hawaii) and the USA enters world war II
1941: Roosevelt authorizes a project to develop an atomic bomb (later renamed the Manhattan Project)
1944: the world's monetary system is anchored to the dollar and the dollar to gold, the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund are created ("Bretton Woods agreement")
1945: Germany surrenders and is divided in a Western and a Soviet area, while Soviet troops occupy Eastern European countries
1945: the USA drops two atomic bombs on Japan (Hiroshima and Nagasaki) and World War II ends
1946: George Marshall envisions a plan to promote the economic recovery of European democracies
Tinfoil hat Alert J
1947: the first widely publicized sighting of a UFO
1947: The USA sets up the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA)
1948: the Jews are granted their own country in Palestine: Israel
1951: the first commercial computer is built, the Univac
1956: Dwight Eisenhower signs the Federal Aid Highway Act to build a nation-wide network of freeways
1957: 4.5 million babies are born in the USA, the highest number in its history (the "baby boomers")
1958: Bank of America adopts the credit card
1958: the USA's gross national product is 50% of the world's national product
1960: The ratio of debt to personal disposable income is 55%
1962: Warren Buffett acquires Berkshire Hathaway, the beginning of his multibillion dollar empire
1964: Bear Stearns acquires Orkin Exterminating Company, the first major leveraged buyout transactions
1969: the computer network ArpaNET is born in the USA (it will be renamed Internet in 1985)
1971: the USA imports more oil than it exports
1971: The USA pulls out of the Bretton Woods agreement of fixed exchange rates and forces foreign currencies to float
1973: the USA, defeated, leaves Vietnam after killing close to 2 million civilians and 1 million soldiers, and losing 58,000 men
1973: members of the Organization of Arab Petroleum Exporting Countries (OAPEC) impose an oil embargo against the West and oil prices skyrocket (the first "oil crisis"), thus precipitating a world depression (october)
1973: the World Trade Center is inaugurated in New York, the world's tallest skyscraper
1974: the Sears Towers open in Chicago, the world's tallest skyscraper
1975: The USA accounts for 26.3% of world GDP
1978: the USA abandons the gold standard
1979: the Soviet Union invades Afghanistan and the USA organizes an Islamic resistance led by Osama Bin Laden
1979: an accident at the Three Mile Island nuclear power plant stops development of new nuclear power plants in the USA
1980: billionaire Ted Turner launches CNN, the first cable tv devoted to world news
1980: The private equity industry raises $2.4 billion
1980: the value of gold peaks at $850 an ounce
1980: Inflation peaks at 13.5%
1981: newly elected president Reagan trades hostages for arms with Iran, helps Saddam Hussein's Iraq against Iran, and authorizes funding and training of Islamic terrorists led by Osama Bin Laden to fight the Soviet Union in Afghanistan
1982: the USA government breaks up the largest company in the world, AT&T, worth $60 billion, because it has become a monopoly
1982: Unemployment peaks at 10.8%
1985: between 1977 and 1985 consumption of oil in the USA drops 17%, imports drop 50%, and imports from the Middle East drop 87%
1985: the dollar declines against European and Japanese currencies (it will decline 50% in three years)
1987: Alan Greenspan is appointed chairman of the Federal Reserve Bank
1987 the largest one day percentage drop ever of the us stock market. 508 points 22.61%1989: The private equity industry raises $21.9 billion
1990 US Banking Crisis
1991: The first economic recession ever strikes California
1993: Islamic terrorists try to blow up the World Trade Center
1994: Netscape, the company founded by Marc Andreesen, goes public even before earning money and starts the "" craze and the boom of the Nasdaq
1995: the Federal Reserve's chairman Alan Greenspan describes the stock market's behavior as "irrational exuberance"
1997: The average yearly income of a USA citizen is $29,000 whereas the average income of a Mexican is $8,000 and the average income of a Nigerian is $900
1998: Osama bin Laden, from his base in Afghanistan, wages a holy war against the USA by bombing two USA embassies in Africa
1999: allows people to create their own "blogs" (personal journals)
2000: More than 50% of USA citizens own stocks
Jan 2000: the Dow Jones reaches an all-time high of 11,723
2000: the economic expansion in the USA is the longest in the history of the US
2000: the NASDAQ stock market crashes, wiping out trillions of dollars of wealth
2000: George W Bush becomes president on a technicality, even though Clinton's vice-president Al Gore wins the majority of votes
2001: the USA enters a recession, ending the longest economic expansion of its history
2001: 3% of the USA population is in jail
2002: USA stock markets crash, following corporate scandals, the third consecutive year of decline
Oct 2002: The Dow Jones falls to 7,286, 37.8% lower than its peak of january 2000
2003: the USA has a record 2 million inmates
2004: the dollar falls to an all-time low against the euro (1.30)
2005: Bernard Ebbers, former Worldcom's CEO, is sentenced to 25 years in jail, capping a string of corporate scandals
2006: Alan Greenspan is retires from chairman of the Federal Reserve Bank
2006: Exxon Mobil posts the largest profit of any company in USA history
2006: Warren Buffet donates $37 billion to charity, the largest donation ever
2006: Enron's CEO Jeffrey Skilling is sentenced to 24 years in prison
2007: China overtakes the USA to become the world's second largest exporter and overtakes Canada to become the main exporter to the USA
2007: after crashing due to the crisis of sub-prime mortgage lenders, the USA stock market sets a new record high
2007: the USA dollar falls to 1:2 to the British pound and to an all-time low of 1.50 to the euro and is worth less than a Canadian dollar for the first time in three decades
2007: at the end of the economic expansion of the 2000s the median income of USA families has declined from $61,000 to $60,500
Dec 2007: The US
jan 2008: the stock market collapses, triggering similar collapses around the world
mar 2008: the price of gold hits $1,000 for the first time ever and oil passes $110 a barrel, while the dollar sets another all-time low against the euro (1.56) and dips below 100 yen (a drop of 6.5% in less than three months), home prices plunge 9.1%, the Eurozone overtakes the USA as the world's largest economy
may 2008: USA's home prices drop by 15.8%, the steepest decline in 21 years
june 2008: oil prices pass $140 a barrel
sep 2008: The USA takes over the two largest mortgage companies, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, and the largest insurance company, American International Group
sep 2008: In a financial crisis, Lehman Brothers files for bankruptcy and Merrill Lynch is sold to Bank of America, the two remaining investment banks in the United States, Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs, decide to become traditional banks, and the government buys $700 billion of bad mortgages in the largest financial bailout since the Great Depression, and on September 29 the Dow Jones loses 778 points, the biggest single-day point loss ever
oct 2008: the Dow Jones loses more 22% in a week of continuous losses, including the biggest single-day decline since 1987
Jul 2009: The USA budget deficit tops $1 trillion
Aug 2009: The unemployment rate reaches 9.7%, a 26-year high

Banchan Wants You

Chart of Charts 121809

The Chart of Charts is expressing "No Opinion".

If you like these posts and original charts, please sign up as a follower--after all, it's just a click! And put this blog on your Google Reader List.

That said, this market action is obviously either a pause before a further climb or a top. That is pretty basic, no great wisdom. But there-in lies a good point--don't overcomplicate the market.

The market is tricky, but the more you read does not necessarily help you understand or predict the market. You could spend all weekend reading blogs in the hope of gaining insight, but that extreme amount of "research" could actually be detrimental to a clear view. You are probably better off going to get some exercise, go on a 4 mile hike through the woods -- clear your head. And think about staying healthy, because if Primary 3 plays out, there is going to be some serious SHTF, and your overall health and energy levels are going to be factors in how well you and your family get through things.

The fundamentals of the world financial situation are horrific. Mortgage rate resets on large pools of mortgages are entering a phase of big increases. None of the bank and risky asset problems have been all. Government just transferred money from tax payers to special interests, without solving any problems.

That said, we made a "Top Call" on November 21th, review the Chart of Charts from that era.

S&P closed at 1106 on November 19th. Now it is at 1102 courtesy of that final ramp job to create "Min Pain" to option writers at expiry.

Distribution continues, from strong hands to weak hands.   Interesting how Calpers just now made it against the rules for it's investment decision makers to receive gifts from "Investment Advisors" aka Salespeople.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Debasement of the Dollar

Ron Paul wrote the following on his website. Ron Paul is one of the few that "Get It", but is he strong enough to turn good ideas into laws?

''Because of legal tender laws that force acceptance of the dollar, the Fed has absolute power over the currency.  This absolute power is leading to the absolute corruption of our currency.  The money supply has doubled in the last year or so, which is extremely dangerous.  The banks seem to be hoarding liquidity now but once these dollars make their way into the economy, hyperinflation and economic chaos will be a real possibility.

Every time hyperinflation rips through an economy, the middle class gets completely wiped out.  It is very alarming to watch the purchasing power of an entire life savings reduced to that of a few pennies.  Those savings represent years of real labor, real time, effort and sacrifice exchanged for corruptible pieces of paper that politicians and bankers can destroy at whim. 

Legal tender laws force the people to become subject to this risk for the benefit of the rulers.  Artificial demand for currency allows the authorities to create arbitrary amounts of it to pay for wasteful projects, like frivolous wars and an ever-expanding public sector.  This saps the private economy of jobs and purchasing power, yet the temptation proves too great for politicians, time and time again.  Our government is no different.  Although our dollar has taken nearly a century to lose 98% of its purchasing power, the fact that we are all obliged to participate in this slow burn of the economy on pain of imprisonment is anathema to the principles of liberty.''

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Citi - A Tale of 2 Citi's

Do these stories fit together?

The Treasury Department owns much of Citi, and Citi amazingly states it will just stop foreclosures and evictions, even in process, so that people can enjoy Christmas season. 

The tinfoil hat in me has perked up.

The most important thing to do during expiry week -- Laugh

I wasn't a big GW fan, and I thought I was an Obama fan for a while.   But rarely do I burst out laughing at an emailed picture....physical real loud laughing....not just an inner chuckle.

This one got me going.   If you didn't laugh you might have to cry.

Man of the Year....following in the footsteps of "The Man That Stole the World (Hanky Panky Paulson)",28804,1946375_1947251,00.html

And this just in from Tom of the North, from own blog, SNL quality material here!!!!


From FED:

In light of ongoing improvements in the functioning of financial markets, the Committee and the Board of Governors anticipate that most of the Federal Reserve’s special liquidity facilities will expire on February 1, 2010, consistent with the Federal Reserve’s announcement of June 25, 2009. These facilities include the Asset-Backed Commercial Paper Money Market Mutual Fund Liquidity Facility, the Commercial Paper Funding Facility, the Primary Dealer Credit Facility, and the Term Securities Lending Facility. The Federal Reserve will also be working with its central bank counterparties to close its temporary liquidity swap arrangements by February 1.

Steve---so maybe the game it...stuff starts blowing up next January....and then to roust support for a new round of bailout money....the Feb 1 deadline is touted.    

As per "nummy" comment...I guess we have to expect range bound until it is not.

Beginning of the End Game

OK, here is a theory....maybe even an original one.

Fed says something unique tomorrow, after all big Ben is pretty creative.  Market goes wild, rallies 3 to 4 %, sweeping an incredible number of stops that have been tightened up for the FOMC occasion.  Adding fuel to the fire.   Boom.  That's it.  Citi, Fannie sell their last shares they need to unload to Calpers under a "programmed momentum buying program".  

Thursday...crash back, blamed on expiry. 

Well, it's a thought anyway. 

It is amazing that the market has come this far regardless of the amount of intervention, who'd of thunk it possible? 

Stink puts.....set your price low...and see what happens....maybe some will hit.

The great evil bald one speaketh at 2:15 EST, Wed.   

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Marisa Tomei and ES, how do they fit together?

2X USD and What About Gold, and a Total Market Chart (-.5% today), JNK

I personally think of gold as a long term buy and hold.  You never sell it unless you are in dire straits.

USD now is in a rising may see pullback.  It has had quite a pop.

Gold has also had quite a drop.  So a relief rally is in the cards.

Check out this Fund RYSBX....not as squirrely as UUP perhaps.  But you can only buy and sell end of day.

Things are coming to a head, Lines, and Triangles and Bens, oh my!!!!

Thoughts on Options - Roll forward out of "thin" January Expiry

Another blogger pointed out....

Lots of holidays, actually more than 10% of the trading days are holidays until Jan expiry, option pricing may reflect this (appear cheap).  Might be good to roll forward to Feb.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Ol' Buck Has a Little Nighttime Run, Short Russell

Euro break of the BIG 61.8 Fib from Summer 2008 Mega-Drop

 Target is 1.375 which is about the 38.1 Fib of the Big Drop, may find support there.

Cost cutting and ramifications

Corporations have cut cost, cut employees.
Profits may look OK.
Where else is left to cut?
Quality, inventory, maintenance.

There will be larger outbreaks of food poisioning from large processors, like Tyson.

Food quality at restaurants, going down.   Food handling by every more inexperienced people who just don't care will result in more food poisioning from restaurants.

Maintenance on little things like gas distribution systems will be reduced.

Plane / Helo maintenance will be reduced and even cheated on. 

Public transportation systems will see decreased maintenance and less replacements even though at end of service life. 

These things are already happening as "healthy" cost cutting measures to make America more competitive take place.

Not trying to be negative, but these things are coming down the pike.  Adjust your lifestyle to account for them. 

Cost cutting measures can often end up as safety cutting measures, especially when the period of cost cutting exceeds the "standard recession" of 18 months.

Legionella is not a common problem from a city water system when the faciltiy heating system is properly maintained and heated to 140F.  However, cost savings may push facilities to turn down their storage tank temperatures.

From the Department of "Alternate Realities Applied to Real World Situations"

This article today talks about the "Abu Dabhi Bailout of Dubai".

The ramifications are that the general populace now accepts "Bailouts" as good strong positive things....the "one government" approach.

I can hardly believe that after all the events since say, the Tech Bubble of 1999, that I can still be astounded.   To have Governmental bailouts be embraced as a good thing, is amazing.

Some of the other language is this article is also amazing.  It call Dubai World it's "Chief Growth Engine", reminiscent of some organic growth of industrial strength such as the building of the rail system in the US.

And it describes the possible default as a "humiliation" by the "boomtown's star companies".

Since we have alot of new followers, I am linking back to some other posts I did on Dubai.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

ES is Extremely Bearish

Sure the market can do anything that it wants.

And...just because your traditional methods have not been sucessful lately, does not mean to throw them under the bus.

If you don't have the cajones to pull the trigger when the target is right in front of you, you will not win.

Look at the weekly MACD.

 You just got to be "Willin'   "

Interesting link.  As Americans, we ought to look across the border more often.  And try to understand what is really going on, not just what our bought and paid for media and Government are telling us.

LQD high quality bonds -- Huge Bearish Engulfing Candle

Bearish Engulfing is very effective as a candle. 
I rarely see these fail and go up.

We will see tomorrow, as Abu Dhabi is not bailing out Dubai World, but giving them a loan until April of $10B, which should keep them from defaulting for a while yet.  I wonder what they took in collateral?  I bet it is a sweet deal.

One day away from default...not a strong negotiating position to be in.

Check out LQD - and you can check the other bonds which are a permanent link on the right hand side of oahutrading blog.

EUR and Doctor Copper

These are both very bearish signs for the US Equities Market.

EUR has clearly broken down.  Copper is on the verge.  60% of copper use in the US is in residential housing construction.  Don't forget China though...they are copper buyers.  However LME stockpiles are rocketing upward.

CNBC False Argumentative Techniques and Hot Waitress Indicator

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