Are Markets And Macro Repeating 2008?
In mid 2008, when macro data surprises were very weak, equity markets continued to push inexorably higher; happily ignorant of reality as The Fed has your back, 'bad is good', and the impossible was still impossible. This rally front-ran the economic surprise data - as economists had (in their ubiquitously extrapolant manner) over-cooked the downside and a reflexive bounce and rate cuts swung us into the green economically and market-wise. That surge in macro surprise data proved fleeting and we crashed a few short months after. Four years later and once again we are told that 'bad is good', every central bank is just dying to add more liquidity fuel to the fire, and macro data is 'surprising' to the upside. However, instead of following the 2009, 2010, and 2011 patterns, we are mimicking that 2008 pattern as 3-month S&P return turns red while ECO data is still rising. We suspect the hope-driven 'magic' in that ECO data will rapidly fall to the bottom-up-biased earnings data we discussed earlier and while 'expecting' a 30% plunge in stocks is a little much - we've seen this kind of hopeful optimism dashed before on the rocks of reality.
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