Headline of the Day

Betting markets (we’ll call them) — a pre-pre-market, in a sense — just a few minutes ago had the Dow opening down roughly 1,000 points come tomorrow morning.

The following headline just hit:

“Federal Reserve Cut Rates to Zero and Launches Massive $700 Billion Quantitative Easing Program”

The Dow (in the “betting markets”) now points to a 260-point gain at the open. The futures market opens shortly. They’ll be hugely volatile, to state the obvious!

This afternoon’s pre-market rally notwithstanding, there was little doubt that the Fed would be coming with record liquidity injections. And while they are absolutely necessary, and essential to keeping the plumbing working, at this juncture they probably don’t present sufficient justification to go aggressively buying stocks — in my humble opinion.

Just looked again at the Dow indicator, and it’s now showing down 287 points. So, a 547-point swing in the time it took me to type three short paragraphs.

The consensus that I’m gathering from economists is that the Fed essentially needs to go after the current setup with all the firepower, and more, that they finally applied in 2009. Some suggesting that it was indeed the Fed that ultimately stopped the bleeding (after a 57% decline in stocks), as opposed to the market finally “clearing” to the point where enough excesses were wrung out of the system, and the last among the sellers had finally hit the panic button.

Time will tell…

Those “betting markets” have the Dow down 177 as I close.

Stay tuned…


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