Could Soaring Twin Deficits Portend October Surprise? – Ep. 394

JOIN PETER at the New Orleans Investment Conference

Ominous October

Today was the end of the month of September; it’s also the end of the third quarter we are now beginning the final quarter of the year.  When we come back to trading next week, we will be in the month of October, and as I mentioned on my last podcast, we have had some substantial stock market declines in October, obviously not every October has a big drop, in fact most of the Octobers don’t, but some of the most notable declines have occurred in the month of October, including the crash of 1987 and the crash of 1929.

You’d Think There Would Be More Concern

But given that our valuations are probably higher now than they were at those prior peaks, you would think that there would be more concern right now about the possibility of another October surprise in the way of a major decline in the stock market.  But the stock market finished the day positive – on the week it was a mixed picture.  The Dow Jones was down a bit and the NASDAQ was up on a week that the Federal Reserve did, in fact, raise interest rates yet again, as expected. Now we’re at 2-2.25%.

Italy’s Economy Putting Pressure on the Euro

The yield, though, on the long bond actually went down, in fact, it was down a little bit again today (Buy the rumor sell the fact). The dollar continued to rise and I thought that maybe we would have seen a dollar sell-off following the rate hike. But I think the reason is because of the weakness in the euro, the result of what’s going on in Italy. The Italian market is under a lot of pressure because the Italian government is running deficits that exceed 2% deficit guideline imposed by the Eurozone.  I think that Italy’s proposed new budget deficit is 2.4% of Italian GDP. This puts pressure on Italy which is also putting pressure on the euro.

Our Debt to GDP Is Twice That of Italy

It’s interesting that if America tried to get into the EU, we couldn’t because out debt to GDP is about 5% and that’s now. It will soar well over 10% in the next recession. Our debt is twice as high relative to our GDP as Italy’s. If we keep running trade deficits like the trade deficit that we printed this month, we are going to be having a serious crisis in the dollar. It was bad trade deficits and concerns about the dollar was one of the biggest reasons we had the 1987 stock market crash.