Last summer, Niall Ferguson, British historian and senior fellow at Stanford University, banged out a laundry list of the president’s shortcomings: He’s a serial adulterer with medical issues that he keeps hidden from the press. He hired a close relative to work in his administration. He’s got a back-channel to the Kremlin. He’s a disrupter who uses modern media to communicate directly to the public. And the prospect of nuclear war under his leadership is more than a little unsettling.
He was talking about JFK, of course. Who else?
So, Ferguson isn’t the only one who has drawn comparisons between Donald Trump and John F. Kennedy. In fact, even Microsoft MSFT, +0.62% founder Bill Gates made the claim (sort of) shortly after the election.
Obviously, finding similarities in the two has also been met with plenty of raised eyebrows, including a pair from MarketWatch’s Howard Gold.
But over the weekend, another theory emerged tying them together — and if it plays out, investors will have a rough road ahead of them.
“This market is starting to look very similar to the JFK post-election rally, top and bear market, which eventually bottomed when Khrushchev backed down during the Cuban Missile Crisis,” the blogger behind The Global Macro Monitor wrote.
Our chart of the day is the illustration he drew to bolster his point:
Let’s hope, for investors’ sake, the comparisons end here.
Looks like stocks are poised to keep clawing back some of those deep losses, with futures on the Dow YMH8, +1.16% and the S&P ESH8, +1.00% up nicely premarket. The Nasdaq-100 futures NQH8, +1.25% are also joining in the fun. This after the Dow Jones Industrial Average DJIA, +0.97% the S&P 500 SPX, +0.75% and the Nasdaq Composite COMP, +0.80% lost more than 5% each last week.
Gold prices GCH8, +0.69% are up in the early going, cashing in on all the uncertainty swirling around the stock market, while crude oil CLH8, +1.52% has added more than 1% this morning. Silver SIH8, +2.14% has risen nearly 2%.
Read more in Market Snapshot
Cryptos are up, with bitcoin BTCUSD, +2.95% gaining nearly 10% in what seemed like quiet trading earlier. The quiet, as you know, typically doesn’t last that long. Just take a look at this chart:
Right before the market got crushed last week, Bridgewater Associates founder Ray Dalio said anybody holding cash would be feeling pretty stupid. The call couldn’t have been more ill-timed, as the Dow was gutted shortly thereafter. Fast-forward a few days, and his fellow Bridgewater investment honcho, Bob Prince, is offering HIS perspective.
“There had been a lot of complacency built up in markets over a long time, so we don’t think this shakeout will be over in a matter of days,” Prince told the Financial Times. “We’ll probably have a much bigger shakeout coming.”
Prince, who manages the world’s biggest hedge fund alongside Dalio, says volatility will continue to roil markets.
“Last year equity markets had a free run. But this year we are going from central banks contemplating tightening policy to actually doing it,” he said. “We will have more volatility as we are entering a new macroeconomic environment.”
Donald Trump is slated to unveil a $200 billion program designed to encourage states and cities to raise their own money for improving infrastructure — hopefully, $1.5 trillion in new investment. The White House says it will free up the necessary funds through spending cuts. As you might assume, the initiative faces an uncertain road in Congress over finding the money to pay for it.
In deal news, CSRA CSRA, +31.39% has agreed to a buyout by General Dynamics GD, -1.87% at a 32% premium, valuing the government IT company at about $6.7 billion. Shares of CSRA are rocketing premarket.
Reports that Broadcom AVGO, +1.63% has secured $100 billion of debt financing for its hostile bid for Qualcomm QCOM, +1.98% could lift the latter.
21st Century Fox FOX, +1.85% is up a little on a report that Comcast CMCSA, +0.64% may be looking to revive its bid to buy the company’s entertainment assets. Fox is owned by News Corp NWSA, -0.13% , the owner of the publisher of this report.
Comcast-owned NBC had to fire one of its Olympic analysts, who caused some outrage after he said South Koreans were grateful to Japan for lifting their nation’s economy. Joshua Cooper Ramo, who sits on the board of Starbucks SBUX, +0.55% and FedEx FDX, +0.65% ,seems to have blanked over Japan’s bloody occupation of Korea from 1910 to 1945.
More Olympic fun — American Mirai Nagasu’s triple axel helps land the U.S. a bronze, and slopestyle queen Jamie Anderson gets a gold as the wind scatters her rivals. But here’s a look at the American Olympic athletes who are just getting by.
“We do not just talk, we act” — Israeli Cabinet Minister Yoav Galant, as quoted by the AP after Benjamin Netanyahu said his country delivered “severe blows” to Iranian and Syrian forces.
Netanyahu also vowed to take further action against its adversaries. The White House called on “Iran and its allies to cease provocative actions,” saying it supports Israel’s right to defend itself in southern Syria.
Iceland is hot.
100 megawatts — That’s how much energy Iceland is reportedly expected to use this year to mine for bitcoin. The kicker: It takes less than that to power all of the island nation’s households.
But why Iceland? It’s apparently attractive place to mine due to its natural cooling climate and the competitive prices for its abundance of renewable energy.
Nothing of note in terms of data today, though the flow of numbers will increase later this week, with January housing starts, retail sales and the consumer price index all on the docket.
Investors should be taking a hard look at that last one, in particular. If the latest CPI increases even just a little bit faster than expected, Wall Street could very easily get spooked, and stocks could take another hit.
“With markets concerned about wages and inflation, the January CPI takes on additional importance,” economists at UBS wrote.
Melania supposedly enjoys Alec Baldwin’s take on Trump.
The selective empathy of the #MeToo backlash.
The terrifying future of fake news, courtesy of BuzzFeed..
Selling guns … in the shadow of the Vegas massacre.
With all due respect to the oiled-up Tongan, Jamaica’s Olympic athletes win gold for their Opening Ceremony entrance.
Kendrick Lamar is banning ALL cameras — smartphones or otherwise — from his concerts. And that goes for the professional photographers, too.
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