Friday, September 04, 2015

Will the Mouse of Wall Street Find More Cheese?

"The stock market is all about fear and anxiety, best shown in how a mouse reacts to a cat." So reasoned Dutch cartoonist Joost Swarte, creator of this week's New Yorker cover,"The Mouse of Wall Street."

Swarte's analysis was incomplete. A Facebook comment offers the necessary addition: "Fear, anxiety and greed."

Can the mouse still expect greed to be rewarded, despite the market correction? The New Yorker's James Surowiecki offers room for hope. Surowiecki points out that the economy looks better than the market. With obvious exceptions like Apple, China's woes shouldn't do significant harm to American companies.

Yale's Robert Shiller sees the mouse in peril. CAPE, the modified p/e ratio he helped to develop, continues to run dangerously high. 
It is entirely plausible that the shaking of investor complacency in recent days will, despite intermittent rebounds, take the market down significantly and within a year or two restore CAPE ratios to historical averages. This would put the S.&P. closer to 1,300 from around 1,900 on Wednesday, and the Dow at 11,000 from around 16,000. They could also fall further; the historical average is not a floor.
What do you think? Will the mouse find more cheese, or will the Dow collapse?

1 comment:

Jim Gust said...

The Dow won't collapse until we get back to normal interest rates. The risks in bonds are greater than the risks of stocks, even at these high CAPE values.