Wednesday, April 15, 2009

The Facts of an Ambitious Market

Posted on the Wall Street Journal's MarketBeat by Evan Newmark:

You feel it, don’t you? This market wants to go higher. Today there is flattish action in the financial stocks when you would think they would sell off much harder.

After all, the bulls who faithfully ponied up $123 bucks a share in Goldman Sachs’s $5 billion offering have been rewarded with $200 million in losses.

But the Financials Select Sector ETF is up 1%, suggesting underlying investor conviction. Of course, it could be misplaced faith. But with J.P. Morgan Chase’s earnings on their way tomorrow, we should know soon enough.

With such a positive tone to the market lately, it seems that the only real lid on this rally are those ugly weighty things called facts.

Facts like yesterday’s weak March retail sales figures and today’s crummy industrial production report. And all those facts around continuing job losses. Another 8,700 employees will now go at UBS. And Yahoo will lose at least several hundred more.

But why should us market bulls let today’s facts stand in the way of hope for tomorrow? Listen to the wise words of Talking Heads in “Crosseyed and Painless:”

Facts are simple and facts are straight
Facts are lazy and facts are late
Facts all come with points of view
Facts don’t do what I want them to

That’s what the market thinks about facts. The market will ignore them until they change or until it decides it can’t ignore them any longer.

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