Wall Street is a place of rumor and hype.
And, I suppose, that understandable, given that the first person to make a trade always has an advantage over all those who follow.
This is like the story of the Rothschild's and the Napoleonic Wars. As the war raged on in Europe, the Rothschild's were busy back in London, trading and investing in the financial markets. They knew that the outcome of the War would greatly affect their investments.
And so, they had set up a network of messengers on horseback, and carrier pigeons to assure them that they would be the first to know the results of the battles.
Upon this single strategy, knowing the outcome of the War, was built the entire fortune of the Rothschild's.
And today, that same quest for information, delivered in a timely manner, is the never-ending pursuit of Wall Street.
When you think about it, information, more precisely price information, is the basis for all of the High-Frequency Trading Firms.
Now over the next few weeks, we will likely get the information that will unlock our understanding of the three key concepts that affect the markets today.
The first piece of information that we will see will be the answer to who will be declared the next President. I know that many of you may be under the impression that has already been decided. But in our system, it is the Electoral College that ultimately decides such matters, And they have not yet voted. They will vote on the 14th of this month, barring some decision by the courts. So mark you calendar for 10 from today before we have the real answer to the Next US President.
A little more than 2 weeks after that, we will get the flash numbers for the Holiday Sales Figures. This will go a long way in helping us determine whether the economy will continue on its path to recovery. Or whether something untoward is pushing us back toward an extended recession.
This week's numbers on labor, and specifically the news of new layoffs, did you see Disney's announcement? It give me a bad feeling about all this. So put on your Calendar, somewhere around January 5th or so, for the final numbers on Retail Sales, and the consumer side of the economy.
And finally, at about that same time, somewhere just after the start of the year, we should start to get some concrete news about the Pandemic. First will come the actual delivery of some of those vaccines. And by that, I mean that some of the first actual shots should be given at that time.
Additionally we should see whether a full-blown second wave of the disease is underway. Will we see Covid Deaths at the rate we saw last Winter? It's an open question, although the current trend is not positive at the moment. By just after the first of the year, we should have a complete picture.
Were you surprised that some of these issues are still yet to be determined? Well, they really are.
Although Wall Street likes to project, and speculate on what's about to happen. The reality is that little or nothing has been yet determined.
So, in less than a month we will have the answer to those questions. We will know who the President will be, we will know whether consumers will continue to spend, and we will know whether a vaccine is effective against the Covid Virus.
But until then, I'm afraid we're just speculating.