Bill Blain: Is Today The Day?

Submitted by Bill Blain of Mint Partners

“When Black Friday comes, I’ll stand by the door and catch the grey men when they dive from the fourteenth floor..”

I’m sorry, but this morning’s porridge isn’t fresh. It was slammed together yesterday afternoon. As you receive this I’ll be doing some showy-off stuff in the City. No freshly scribbled early morning porridge today – just this “warmed up in the micro-wave” pap. (Incidently, one of my favourite words is Poppity-Ping – Welsh for microwave. Don’t say you don’t learn something every day…)

If I write anything profound last night, it might well be mediocre by this morning..

But… today is the day… finally it has arrived. It’s time to suffer..

For the past couple of months, I’ve been confidently predicting October 12th as the day Global stock markets stagger, tumble and correct. It started as a little joke – my primary reason for picking October 12th was simply that it’s the day before a Friday the 13th.. meaning it’s a great day to really ruin everyone’s anticipation of the weekend!

Later I came to the conclusion Oct 12th is as good as any other day for a market correction – and its almost 30-years since the October Hurricane and the Black Monday Crash of 1987 (which I remember well), so why not October 12th.

Amusingly, I’m now being trolled on Zerohedge by oh so erudite Americans calling me all kinds of names for apparently getting it wrong. If I ever become an omnipotent god, the first thing I shall do is bestow the gifts of humour, wit and sarcasm on our cousins across the pond.

Lots of folk say there is not going to be a market correction. The global economy is moving in the right growth direction, and policies, politics, and corporate plans are all aligned for expansion. As a result, they think the markets are impervious to any sell-off. They might be right. They look at the numbers and conclude nothing can possibly go wrong. Perhaps they are right? Perhaps there are no volatility drivers any more, perhaps something has fundamentally changed about markets and perhaps the laws of mean reversion are no longer current?

They believe the waves of political shocks washing across markets are just noise – tittle tattle of no concern for markets.

If the crash/correction doesn’t happen today, I still think we’re going to get a market correction sometime soon!

When Donald Trump is promising us massive and sensible tax reform while simultaneously insulting all and sundry in his own party, when Europe is just so f*r**g European, Nobel Prize winners say they can’t understand why the markets are so high, when leading chartists are warning of Black Swann reversals, when top fund managers are saying they are no longer convinced, and even Astrologers are warning a change in the heavens spells a 13% correction on the Dow, you have to wonder.

Does it really matter anyway?

When the correction comes, and come it will, I shall have my buying boots ready. I saw a fascinating chart showing total returns since the Global Financial Crisis crash of 2007 in dollar terms. Guess what? The best returning asset, beating all others, was US Stocks.

On that happy note, back in the office this afternoon..