Imagine a kid with a belly full of jelly beans plus a can of Mountain Dew, who is complaining about a bellyache but cries when given a tablespoon of Pepto-Bismol or other medicine.
That’s how I see the current stock market. After riding high thorough a pandemic with a belly full of deficit spending and cheap money, it complains about inflation but cries when given interest rate increases and quantitative-tightening.
Just like the kid who survives a stomachache, the current stock market will also survive. It may vomit for a while, but it will not die.
The 981 point drop in the Dow on Friday sounds worse than it is, less than 3%. During “Black Monday” and “Black Tuesday” in October of 1929, the Dow dropped almost 25% — eight times worse!
Remember: the stock market can handle bad news but not bad surprises. For the last few weeks, the market has been getting its head around the quarter-point increase in interest rates expected next month, when Fed Head Jerry Powell said on Thursday that a half-point increase was “on the table” or twice what the market expected. So, blame the drop on Powell!
However, he did the right thing by admitting now that a bigger increase was coming — bigger than the market expected. If he had not admitted it now, the market reaction next month to a half-point increase would have been much worse. The market WILL get its head around a half-point increase. Just give it time . . .