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Week Starting January 4, 2010

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Raymond MerrimanHappy New Year to everyone, and best wishes for a successful and prosperous New Year! For many, I think 2010 can be the most successful year of their lives. After all, with Jupiter and Uranus both entering Aries together, it suggests that 2010 will be a year of extremes, and a year in which speculators may produce fantastic results in some cases, and horrific results in others. Our goal for our subscribers will, of course, be to guide them into the former category.

In last week’s shortened holiday markets, many of the world’s stock indices soared to a new yearly high. But then many also sold off sharply into the close of the week. In Europe, all the indices we track made new yearly highs right on the Venus-Saturn square day of December 29. That date ended the large time band of geocosmic signatures extending from December 10-29. It also ended the two-day translation of Venus to the Saturn-Pluto square, December 28-29. This may be a harbinger of a strong decline associated with the second passage of Saturn-square-Pluto in late January.

Yearly highs were not noted, however, in several Asian and Pacific Rim countries. They all rallied last week, but only India’s NIFTY index made a new yearly high. In Russia, the MICEX stock index was very quiet, trading a very tight range with no new monthly highs or lows. Its high of 1412 on December 15 still stands as the high of the year.

In the Americas, both the Merval Index of Argentina and Bovespa index of Brazil failed to post a new yearly high last week. They came close, with the Merval hitting 2328 on December 30, which is just a few points below its yearly high of 2343 back on October 22. The Bovespa got to 68,588, down from the 69,785 high of December 14. The Dow Jones Industrial Average and the NASDAQ Composite index both made yearly highs on December 28-29 before selling off.

Crude Oil had a good week, with the nearby contract touching 80.00 again last week. That is still down slightly from its yearly high of 82.00 on October 21. Gold and Silver started out strong last week, following their monthly lows of the prior week. But by the end of the week, both had fallen back, with Gold below 1100 and Silver below 1700. In the case of Gold, it is still holding above its 1075 low on December 22, associated with Mars turning retrograde. Silver fell to 1676 last week, slightly below its 1678 low of December 22, for a possible case of intermarket bullish divergence, if both can close in the upper third of this week’s range.

Short-Term Geocosmics

You would think stock markets would now come down, given that many made new yearly highs last week, but then sold off sharply at the end. And perhaps they might. After all, last week had some impressive geocosmic signatures present as the top unfolded. Additionally, many technical signals also started to lose their bullish momentum, suggesting that at least a corrective decline should now be in process. But traders and Financial Astrologers must remember one thing: both Mars and Mercury are now retrograde. Thus there are apt to be many false buy and sell signals. Technical sell signals at the end of last week could fall in to this category of being a “trick” from the trickster, Mercury retrograde. It could be a false signal.

Mercury will be in retrograde through January 15. Mars will be retrograde through March 10. We know with Mars retrograde as of December 20, that any market making a multi-month low or high within ten trading days, could begin a counter-trend move that lasts into a period of ten trading days surrounding its direct date. If indeed last week’s high holds, and bearish technical signals generated last week are valid, then world stock indices could be readying for a rather impressive decline for a couple of months. In the same token, precious metals and European currencies may have exhibited lows associated with the Mars retrograde date. In that case, they become candidates for a rally into March 10 – but only if those lows now hold.

With Mercury retrograde, we also know not to become attached to any buy or sell signal for a couple of weeks. That is because Mercury is a trickster, especially when retrograde, in the field of financial markets. In other words, it is quite common for the market to signal that it is ready to go one way (up or down), only to be negated 1-4 days later.

There are no geocosmic clusters in effect now until January 13-15. If last week’s technical sell signals in equities are valid, then we would expect reversals to have taken place last week, which will continue into mid-January. But if those signals were typical Mercury retrograde fake-outs, we would instead see equity markets negating those sell signals, and continuing their advance to new yearly highs.

Longer-Term Thoughts

What kind of year will 2010 be? My initial thoughts are that 2010 will be “The Year of Extremism.”

We are going through something astrologically that we have not been through in our lifetime. The closest we have come to what we will experience in 2010 is perhaps 1965-66 and 1930-31. In 1965-66, we made it through the Uranus-Pluto conjunction in opposition to Saturn. It was a time of fervent revolutionary thought that had the potential to overthrow existing governmental structures. In 1930-31, we were in the middle of the previous Cardinal Climax involving Saturn, Uranus, and Pluto in a cardinal T-square, similar to what is transpiring this year (late 2009 through early 2011). That was a period when the world financial system had a meltdown. It ushered in the Great Depression, and led to a revolutionary new direction in many world governments, including the United States.

But 2010 has something extra going on. Not only are Saturn, Uranus, and Pluto in hard aspects again to one another, but Jupiter and Uranus will be moving back and forth between Pisces and Aries in this hard aspect formation Pisces and Aries are the end and beginning of the zodiac, and this dance begins in May 2010 and last through early 2011.

Why is this important to Financial Astrologers? Well, first of all, Aries is a fire sign with a lot of energy. It is competitive and it wants to be first. It is fast to act, and its nature is to charge headlong into something once it determines it wants that. It is aggressive and assertive and won’t back down easily once it suddenly starts. It is a force. Jupiter and Uranus share many qualities in common with Aries. That is, all are enthusiastic and independent, and may be a little self-righteous (even arrogant) about “their way” being the “only right way,” or at least the “best way” to do things. They are not responsive to caution and warnings. In fact, they are apt to either dismiss them or re-interpret them in ways that justify what they want to do.

Consider also that Jupiter rules excess and extremes. When it is active, there is a tendency to do “more,” or to want “more.” Jupiter on one level is greed. It is a risk-taker because it has confidence that it will come out ahead. It feels “lucky.” Sometimes, “…nothing could be stupider than to fall in love with Jupiter,” according to friend and musician, Jotown. Uranus is also a risk-taker and extremely independent. Together, there is probably no combination of geocosmic signatures more related to excessive speculation and risk-taking that Jupiter and Uranus. And in the fire sign of Aries, this will be even more pronounced.

This is why I think 2010 will be “The Year of Extremism.” Many in the world will likely be taking big risks. Many will act in accordance with the very warning that the Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao issued, stating the U.S. central bank and government policies are leading to excessive speculation and asset bubbles throughout the world, and this is a dangerous course to follow. Congress and the White House are rolling the dice with their gamble that the economy needs more and more monetary stimulus to deal with the ballooning federal deficit. If they are lucky, maybe it will work. But there are many warnings as to the danger of this behavior that are being ignored or simply re-translated as justification for the actions that they are going to carry out anyway. For that reason, I think the next 18 months will see equity markets around the world go down in early 2010, then way up, then way down again, in much wider price increments than anybody thinks today. After all, opposite the Jupiter-Uranus conjunction for most of the year will be Saturn, the party crasher. If Jupiter and Uranus in Aries is a force, then Saturn in opposition to both is the wall of resistance. It will break down, and then punish for the trespasser shortly afterward. Furthermore, they will be squared by Pluto, the bill collector coming for his payment that is likely to be much higher than was calculated – if it was calculated and considered at all. These leaders may be very skilled in their spoken and written words, which can be very inspiring and supportive. But I wonder how they did in math and finance concepts when in school? I think they are about to learn a very important lesson in 2010. I think we all are.

© Raymond A. Merriman


Disclaimer and statement of purpose: The purpose of this column is not to predict the future movement of various financial markets. However, that is the purpose of the MMA (Merriman Market Analyst) subscription services. This column is not a subscription service. It is a free service, except in those cases where a fee may be assessed to cover the cost of translating this column from English into a non-English language. This weekly report is written with the intent to educate the reader on the relationship between astrological factors and collective human activities as they are happening. In this regard, this report will oftentimes report what happened in various stock and financial markets throughout the world in the past week, and discuss that movement in light of the geocosmic signatures that were in effect. It will then identify the geocosmic factors that will be in effect in the next week, or even month, or even years, and the author’s understanding of how these signatures will likely affect human activity in the times to come. The author (Merriman) will do this from a perspective of a cycle’s analyst looking at the military, political, economic, and even financial markets of the world. It is possible that some forecasts will be made based on these factors. However, the primary goal is to both educate and alert the reader as to the psychological climate we are in, from an astrological perspective. The hope is that it will help the reader understand these psychological dynamics that underlie (or coincide with) the news events and hence financial markets of the day.

No guarantee as to the accuracy of this report is being made here. Any decisions in financial markets are solely the responsibility of the reader, and neither the author nor the publishers assume any responsibility at all for those individual decisions. Reader should understand that futures and options trading are considered high risk.