WASHINGTON, August 28, 2012 – A day late but no dollars short, the 2012 Republican Convention opens today in Tampa, Florida. In spite of occasional actor and full time racist Samuel L. Jackson’s disappointment that Hurricane Isaac failed to obliterate it; and despite sometime actress Ellen Barkin’s retweet of a follower’s message—to wit, “C’mon #Isaac! Wash every pro-life, anti-education, anti-woman, xenophobic, gay-bashing, racist SOB right into the ocean! #RNC”; the show will go on this evening, launching Mitt Romney’s formal bid to unseat Barack Obama this November.
Gosh, Sam and Ellen. What ever happened to the “new civility?”
The markets will be watching all this activity this week, along with following moves or non-moves by the U.S. Fed and by the Eurocrats, all hoping to divine from these virtual tealeaves what kind of economy might be facing them in the months and years ahead.
Trading volume is apparently nearing or at an all-time low, however, as vacationing Americans enjoy their last remaining summer holidays prior to the start of school after Labor Day. (Many college semesters are already underway.) The market opened down this morning (poor consumer confidence figures), bounced up a bit, and now is back down again at 11:20 a.m. EDT. Who knows where it goes?
The only burning question, really, this morning is where Hurricane Isaac will actually make landfall (still looks like the Big Easy or thereabouts, much to Sam and Ellen’s disappointment) and if there will be significant damage to and or curtailment of oil drilling, pumping, and refining activities on the Gulf Coast. Oil, and particularly gasoline, are both up this morning, although at least part of the rise could be tied in with just how murderous Iran’s intent happens to be today.
It’s just another uncertain day amidst uncertain politics amidst uncertain international intentions. In other words, travel at your own risk. Again, we may add a bit to gold and silver ETF positions (IAU and SLV) today as a hedge. But there’s really not enough on the table to feel good about energetic buying and selling. Best, maybe, is just to finish that staycation this week out at the Barbie and wait for some better tealeaves.
Maven columns will continue to be short until things pick up, probably after Labor Day. Meanwhile, we’ll be catching up on lengthier, more informational posts over at The Prudent Man.
Disclaimer: The author has small positions in IAU and SLV and may add to them this week as the situation warrants.
The author of this column maintains several active trading and investment portfolios and owns residential and investment real estate.
Positions mentioned above describe this author’s own investment decisions and should not be construed as either buy or sell recommendations. The current market is highly treacherous and all investors travel at their own risk, so caution should be exercised at all times.
Illustrations, charts, commentary, and analysis are only the author’s view of current or historical market activity and don’t constitute a recommendation to buy or sell any security or contract. Views, indications, and analysis aren’t necessarily predictive of any future market or government action. Rather they indicate the author’s opinion as to a range of possibilities that may occur going forward.
References to other reporters, analysts, pundits, or commentators are illustrative only and do not necessarily represent an endorsement of such individuals’ points of view. If specific investment vehicles are mentioned in any article under this column heading, the author will always fully disclose any active or contemplated investments in said vehicles.
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