September 23, 2022

Today the DJIA dropped another 486 points. That’s a lot of points! Earlier it had looked like it would be closer to 1000 points, but a late tempering reduced the losses. Also the new British government decided to cut income taxes, and the pound dropped immediately. Right now sterling is at $1.085, which is well below what the Euro was in 2014 when I went to France. The Euro was about $1.30 then. I know I picked the wrong time to go to Europe, but that’s how that goes. The idea to cut taxes now is crazy in my opinion. Sure, the British economy is in the toilet, but a stimulus right now would add to price inflation rather than coax people out of their hidey holes to start spending again when the economy is frozen. Also by cutting taxes in an ineffective attempt to turn the economy around, it means that tool can’t be used later. I had been writing about how inflation overall will continue as long as oil keeps going up. Well, today oil went down. Devon energy–which I have a stake in–dropped about 9%. Is that a good sign? Maybe! but the VIX went up more than 9%. So the options folks expect the market to go up by a lot in the next 30 days. If you believe that the election cycle is a big part of having a good market, then 30 days from now it must be good for the midterm elections on November 8. (Sidenote: I’m anti-Prop 27 and anti-Prop 26, but more on that another time.) Evofem–and I do own shares of EVFM–was up and down today and ended up closing below 20c/share again. News had come out that they got yet another patent for Phexxi. Of all my positions, TrueCar was the only one that increased on the day. My guess is that it’s the result of hedge funds buying to cover short positions. I don’t know that TRUE is doing anything particularly wonderful in this time, but I don’t mind anything offsetting losses on the day.

Exchange rates per WSJ
USD-Euro: $0.9690 (+1.53%)
USD-GBP: $1.0850 (+3.72%)
USD-CAD: $0.7359 (+0.75%)
USD-NIS: $0.2851 (+0.46%)
Yen-USD: 143.34 (-0.69%)
Won-USD: 1404.86 (-0.51%)

September 22, 2022

The day after the Fed decision to raise interest rates another 75 basis points, the DJIA closed down 107 points. Overnight, the Bank of Japan decided to take action and sell dollars and buy yen. I had bought some yen a couple weeks ago at about 144, and I watched as it fell lower. I was confident it would come back up, and as of publishing, the rate I see is a little worse than 142. So hooray for that, I guess. but it didn’t happen without intervention, and most other currencies fell against the dollar today. Oil gained a bit, and I think it’s still far too low compared to where it should be. Winter is coming, and the SPR can’t be open forever. Today and yesterday, committees in both houses of congress asked the heads of banks if they would commit not to fund new oil exploration. They said no. Once we’re there with alternative sources of energy, we can get off the oil train. But for now, we still need oil. And since we still need oil, higher oil means higher prices for goods. I don’t expect inflation to stop until oil prices fall either by way of stopping reliance or increasing supply. And I doubt we’ll increase supply sustainably in the short term. And on the topic of shorts, I heard on BloombergTV last night that people are recommending getting out of short positions as interest rates rise. I don’t know if that sentiment was causal in Evofem’s (EVFM) increase by as much as like 20% today, though it closed up 13.33%. Top line results form the Evoguard trial are expected to come out in less than three weeks.

Exchange rates per WSJ
USD-Euro: $0.9838 (+0.01%)
USD-GBP: $1.1254 (+0.15%)
USD-CAD: $0.7414 (+0.19%)
USD-NIS: $0.2864 (+0.80%)
Yen-USD: 142.37 (+1.19%)
Won-USD: 1404.86 (-0.51%)

September 21, 2022

Jerome Powell declared a rate increase of 75 basis points today. The market reacted immediately down and then went up and then went really down at the end of the day, dropping more than 522 points. But the market was expecting either a 75- or 100-basis-point drop. It was never going to be 50. So why such a bad reaction? Calah says maybe dead cat bounce. I personally think overreaction and selling leading to selling. I expect it to tick up some tomorrow or Friday. Rosh Hashanah starts Sunday night, so a few traders will be out of the market Monday and Tuesday. I maintain what I’ve felt recently in that the recession we will face will be deep and long. That’s why I had purchased and for good measure/fun I bought and Oil prices also took a hit, and I think that’s backwards because we’re not in a world of renewables yet, and Russian gas and oil are not in the mix for many countries. The SPR release has been extended by 30 days, and my take is that this artificial depression in oil prices will catch up with us. I own some oil stocks and renewable energy stocks, and I don’t see oil really going down much. And because I don’t see oil going down much, I see raw materials staying high and inflation keeping on going.

Exchange rates per WSJ
USD-Euro: $0.9839 (+1.33%)
USD-GBP: $1.1271 (+0.98%)
USD-CAD: $0.7429 (+0.70%)
USD-NIS: $0.2887 (+0.44%)
Yen-USD: 144.08 (-0.25%)
Won-USD: 1397.73 (-0.35%)

I hope there won’t be a financial crisis in 2023, but if there is, you can get information here. I express my views and opinions, and I may have financial interest in things I write about. I mean if I thought something was going to do well and didn’t buy any of it, what am I even doing? This is not financial advice.

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