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Monthly Archives: October 2012

The S&P 500 Change Following Presidential Elections

Some excellent analysis by Bill McBride:

For fun on a Sunday: I’ve been asked frequently how investors will react to the election. First, every election is different. Sometimes it is obvious who is going to win, and the election results are completely expected (like Reagan in 2004 or Clinton in 1996). Other times the election is close (this election is close although I expect President Obama to be reelected).

Sometimes the economy is clearly headed into recession like in 2008. The 2000 election was during the ongoing decline following the stock bubble, and the election was especially unsettling because the Supreme Court made the final decision.

There are always some partisan analysts who predict doom if their candidate doesn’t win (see Bruce Bartlett’s Partisan Bias and Economic Forecasts). But any “doom” related to the election will be in the intermediate or long term, not in 2013.

The following graph shows the change in the S&P 500 from election day through the end of the year for all elections since 1952. Note: The number of trading days varied mostly because of the timing of the election.

Read the rest here.

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Weather experts on Hurricane Sandy: ‘You have not seen this before’

On satellite, Hurricane Sandy appeared somewhat disheveled. Massive, but weakened, as if it was being pulled apart by the forces around it.

Along the New Jersey Shore, some were already dismissing it, vowing to ignore evacuation orders and ride it out. After all, Tropical Storm Irene wasn’t that bad.

Make no mistake: You have not seen a storm like this.

It is not Irene. It is not the Ash Wednesday Storm of 1962. It is not the Long Island Express hurricane of 1938.

These are some of the worst storms in state history, and forecasters say Sandy could beat them all.

“The message we’re trying to get out to people is, no matter how old they are, they’ve never seen this before,” said Gary Szatkowski, meteorologist in charge at the National Weather Service. “If they’re relying on past experiences, it is not going to serve them well. We want you to be out of harm’s way.”

Read the rest here.

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Wall Street Makes Plans to Open Monday Even as Sandy Bears Down

(Reuters) – New York-based stock exchanges are sending officials into Manhattan on Sunday to stay in hotels and coworkers’ homes as the NYSE and Nasdaq prepare to open for business on Monday, even as Hurricane Sandy closes off public transportation links.

Hurricane Sandy is expected to slam into the East Coast on Monday night, bringing torrential rains, high winds, severe flooding and power outages, forecasters said. The rare “super storm,” created by an Arctic jetstream wrapping itself around a tropical storm, could be the biggest to hit the U.S. mainland.

New York’s subway, bus and rail systems will suspend service by 7 p.m. EDT on Sunday, Governor Andrew Cuomo said, which means there will be no public transportation into or within the city. About 8.5 million commuters use the Metropolitan Transit Authority’s rail, bus and subway lines daily.

A spokesman for NYSE Euronext said after the Cuomo announcement that the New York Stock Exchange was monitoring the situation but still planned to open for trading on Monday. A spokesman for Nasdaq OMX Group referred Reuters’ inquiry to a previous statement that said the Nasdaq would open for trading as normal on Monday.

Read the rest here.

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Hurricane and Natural Disaster Stocks (*STORM)

Index Description: These companies have either acknowledged the beneficial impact of hurricane-related sales on seasonal performance, or are in direct competition with firms that have.

See the index and its constituents here.

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5 Reasons Sandy Will Be Epic

Hurricane Sandy is moving toward the northeast. At some point, it is expected to become what’s known as an extratropical storm. Unlike a tropical system like a hurricane, which gets its power from warm ocean waters, extratropical systems are driven by temperature contrasts in the atmosphere. At some point, Sandy will strike the East Coast.

Although Sandy is currently a hurricane, it’s important not to focus too much on its official category or its precise path. It’s a massive system that will affect a huge swath of the eastern U.S., regardless of exactly where it hits or its precise wind speed. For example, tropical storm-force winds can be felt 450 miles away from the storm’s center, according to the National Hurricane Center. The Federal Emergency Management Agency has personnel and supplies spread as far west as the Ohio River Valley, said Craig Fugate, the agency’s director.

Read the rest here.

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Massive Hurricane Sandy Building a Huge and Destructive Storm Surge

Published: 2:34 PM GMT on October 28, 2012

Massive and dangerous Hurricane Sandy has grown to record size as it barrels northeastwards along the North Carolina coast at 10 mph. At 8 am EDT, Sandy’s tropical storm-force winds extended northeastwards 520 miles from the center, and twelve-foot high seas covered a diameter of ocean 1,030 miles across. Since records of storm size began in 1988, no tropical storm or hurricane has been larger (though Hurricane Olga of 2001 had a larger 690 mile radius of tropical storm-force winds when it was a subtropical storm near Bermuda.) Sandy has put an colossal volume of ocean water in motion with its widespread and powerful winds, and the hurricane’s massive storm surge is already impacting the coast. A 2′ storm surge has been recorded at numerous locations this morning from Virginia to Connecticut, including a 3′ surge at Virginia’s Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel and Sewells Point at 9 am EDT. Huge, 10 – 15 foot-high battering waves on top of the storm surge have washed over Highway 12 connecting North Carolina’s Outer Banks to the mainland at South Nags Head this morning. The highway is now impassable, and has been closed. The coast guard station on Cape Hatteras, NC, recorded sustained winds of 50 mph, gusting to 61 mph, at 5:53 am EDT this morning. In Delaware, the coastal highway Route 1 between Dewey Beach and Bethany Beach has been closed due to high water. Even though Sandy is a minimal Category 1 hurricane, its storm surge is extremely dangerous, and if you are in a low-lying area that is asked to evacuate, I strongly recommend that you leave.

Figure 1. A fright to behold: morning satellite image of massive Hurricane Sandy.

Read the rest here.

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The Absolute Worst Pro-Obama Ad Ever Made


And you thought the “Have Your First Obamagasm” ad was bad…

Here are the lyrics:

Imagine an America
Where strip mines are fun and free
Where gays can be fixed
And sick people just die
And oil fills the sea

We don’t have to pay for freeways!
Our schools are good enough
Give us endless wars
On foreign shores
And lots of Chinese stuff

We’re the children of the future
American through and through
But something happened to our country
And we’re kinda blaming you

We haven’t killed all the polar bears
But it’s not for lack of trying
Big Bird is sacked
The Earth is cracked
And the atmosphere is frying

Congress went home early
They did their best we know
You can’t cut spending
With elections pending
Unless it’s welfare dough

We’re the children of the future
American through and through
But something happened to our country
And we’re kinda blaming you

Find a park that is still open
And take a breath of poison air
They foreclosed your place
To build a weapon in space
But you can write off your au pair

It’s a little awkward to tell you
But you left us holding the bag
When we look around
The place is all dumbed down
And the long term’s kind of a drag

We’re the children of the future
American through and through
But something happened to our country
And yeah, we’re blaming you

You did your best
You failed the test

Mom and Dad
We’re blaming you!

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The Two Polls That Have Chicago Terrified

For all of the polls that are flying out almost hourly now, there are two common trends emerging: Mitt Romney is leading independents by healthy margins, and who holds the overall lead is entirely dependent on the party split within the sample. As of last night, Romney has a razor thin lead of eight tenths of a point nationally against an average Democratic partisan advantage of 4.4 points. In 2008, Barack Obama won the election by 7.2 points (52.9–45.7) and Democrats outnumbered Republicans by eight points. Compared to the average today, Obama has dropped eight points while only losing 2.6 points of the turnout advantage. That is due entirely to Romney’s strength with independent voters, and reason enough to sound the alarm in Chicago.

But of all the polls that have been released, there are two polls that will have Team Obama waking up in a cold sweat knowing that if these polls are even somewhat accurate they might be on the other end of a dramatic victory on Election Day: The party-affiliation polls from Gallup and Rasmussen.

Read the rest here.

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The Incredible Shrinking President

Steyn: ‘We’re going to have that person arrested and prosecuted that did the video,” said Hillary Clinton. No, not the person who made the video saying that voting for Barack Obama is like losing your virginity to a really cool guy. I’ll get to that in a moment. But Secretary Clinton was talking about the fellow who made the supposedly Islamophobic video that supposedly set off the sacking of the Benghazi consulate. And, indeed, she did “have that person arrested.” By happy coincidence, his bail hearing has been set for three days after the election, by which time he will have served his purpose. These two videos — the Islamophobic one and the Obamosexual one — bookend the remarkable but wholly deserved collapse of the president’s reelection campaign.

Read the rest here.

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Documentary: Forbidden Archeology

Enjoy the great outdoors b4 Sandy hits….



[youtube://http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6oGqPc6poS4&feature=related 450 300]

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On the Matter of High Frequency Trading, Boon or Bust to Stocks ?

“Andy Brooks and Gus Sauter have been managing funds at two of the nation’s best-known investment firms for decades, but they can’t agree on what to make of the Wall Street phenomenon of high-frequency trading.

Brooks, head of U.S. equity trading at Baltimore-based T. Rowe Price, sees the high-speed traders as a nuisance, even a threat. Sauter, chief investment officer at the Vanguard Group, sees them as beneficial to all investors…”

Full article

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Rail traffic Continues to Expand Modestly

“No big changes in this data.  Rail traffic continues to expand modestly.  This week’s data from AAR showed a continuing decline in carloads, but an increase in intermodal.  We track intermodal as it has proven to be a better leading indicator of economic growth.  The 3 month moving average in intermodal now sits at 3.5% – Well below the 2010 double digit readings, but not contracting.  The AAR has more on this week’s data:”

Full report

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Corporate Order Trends Suggest We are In the Midst of a Recession *

“Here’s some rather disconcerting analysis from Moody’s on the state of corporate America. They highlight capital goods orders and correlation with business sales noting that such declines have only occurred in the mist of recession:”

Full article

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The Case for Stock Optimism

“(Money Magazine) — Had you looked back in January to see how stocks did in the prior decade, you’d have been underwhelmed by annualized gains of just 3%.

Repeat that exercise today and you’ll get a decidedly brighter picture: The Dow has gained nearly 9% a year and the S&P 500 more than 8% now that the effects of the March 2000 to October 2002 bear market are more than a decade in the rearview mirror. That’s nearing the 9.8% historical average return of U.S. stocks.”

Full article

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