The market is taking it firmly on the chin this morning with the Dow, right now, down around 800 points.
As certain sections of the country begin to open up again … concern appears to be growing that this virus is not going away anytime soon … even though one new study claims “summer sun” can defeat the virus in just 34 minutes. And while many leaders boast “we won’t be closing again” one thing over which they have little control is how people will react if cases spike again … as they cannot make it illegal for people to stay inside their homes if fear rises anew. Can they?
There is also concern over the resulting economy.
Just this morning, Secretary Mnuchin (per the second story bel0w) announced that the U.S. might be out of recession by the end of the year. But wait a minute! This is the same guy who just 10 days ago said the economic rebound had already begun and there would be dramatic improvement in the third quarter. Of course, even before this … back in March … both he and Larry Kudlow gave the opinions that a recession would not be arriving at all. It appears that the optimistic song continues to be sung … but investors now seem to be looking for actual proof … as the U.S. happy lyrics don’t seem to blend well with the somber tune being played by the IMF.
There is also concern over the climate – which has taken a back seat of late with all the other news stories going on – as a town in Siberia posted a temperature over 100-degrees. That might not seem so ridiculous … it being summer and all … but, according to the article below … June’s average temperature is in the 60s! One other interesting item of note (for your water-cooler Zoom discussion) … Miami only recorded one day at 100-degrees in its history … way back in 1942. I found this little tidbit to be fascinating.
On a final note for this morning I am returning to the topic of statues … as a protesting group in Madison, Wisconsin, destroyed a statue of Norwegian-American Hans Christian Heg. Just over the weekend I had a chat with someone about the anti-war protests of my early youth … in which, even amid the wildness, everyone seemed unified around a goal. They knew what they wanted … which brings me back to Hans Heg … for the difference between a protest and a mob seems to be narrowing.
The story I read was that Hans was an honored soldier and fought in an all-Scandinavian group during the civil war. But what stood out was that Hans was an anti-slavery activist, hated it with a passion … fought against its expansion toward the west, and was instrumental in the establishment of prison reform. Tearing down something that honors what you believe in makes no sense at all. Ready, fire, aim … seems to be the motto of the day in some locations.
I just hope that when sensibility returns … if it ever does … that statue should be replaced … with one major difference.
It should be twice as big.
Have a great day,
Joseph G. Witthohn, CFA
Emerald Asset Management PA, LLC
610 Freedom Business Center Drive
King of Prussia, PA 19406
Direct: (610) 285-9905
cell: (856) 625-7915
… as of 9:57 AM today …
Quick Look at the News
As we move towards the end of the month, there are concerns that a "wave of selling" is on its way ... but wouldn't institutions already be aware of this and have it priced in? (CNBC)https://www.cnbc.com/2020/06/23/theres-a-wave-of-selling-estimated-to-be-in-the-billions-thats-about-to-hit-the-stock-market.html
Meanwhile, any problem might only be temporary ... at least according to our Treasury Secretary who feels we'll be out of recession by the end of the year (BusinessInsider)https://markets.businessinsider.com/news/stocks/treasury-secretary-mnuchin-us-out-of-coronavirus-recession-year-end-2020-6-1029335482
.. but the IMF is not so positive ... and identifies the present global situation a "crisis like no other with an uncertain recovery" (IMF)https://www.imf.org/en/Publications/WEO/Issues/2020/06/24/WEOUpdateJune2020
... and one of the problems has to do with personal finances, of course. And with a growing number late on mortgage payments, you wonder if these problems will increase (CNN)https://www.cnn.com/2020/06/22/success/mortgage-payment-delinquencies-in-may-coronavirus/index.html
Sometimes we see celebrities and CEOs in their 100' yachts telling us we should care about the planet more ... but their per capita consumption might be off the charts (Salon)https://www.salon.com/2020/06/23/the-affluent-are-consuming-the-planet-to-death-study/
... but it might not be steaks they are buying ... at least, not for long ... as the goal of one "fake meat" company is to make the meat industry obsolete. Holy cow! (CNBC)https://www.cnbc.com/2020/06/23/impossible-foods-ceo-meat-industry-will-be-obsolete-within-15-years.html
... for climate change is still getting attention ... for the temperature in the Arctic is over 100 degrees ... and for that area of the world, that's pretty hot (EarthDay)https://www.earthday.org/100-arctic-heat-moves-meteorologist-to-declare-a-climate-emergency/
... yet the sun might be a good friend to have right now ... as it is deadly toward the coronavirus and can defeat it ... in just over half-an-hour (NYPost)https://nypost.com/2020/06/23/new-study-says-summer-sun-can-kill-coronavirus-in-34-minutes/