For the record, we have been calling this for a good while now. We warned of slowing in the Ultimate Crony Capitalist State, China. We warned that the great neo-Keynesian experiment was destined for an ugly end (and we are by no means the only ones who said this).
Is this THE turn? It looks increasingly so but the next few months will show us for sure. Will it be worse than 2008? We don’t know. Is there the very real potential of it being worse? Yes, absolutely. The market has a lot of baloney it needs to clear out of the system. It could be a period of prolonged pain.
As someone who felt 2008 hit him square in the jaw, who hopes others can be spared such a blow, I do not write these words (or any words) lightly. Caution now could save one some trouble down the road.
Even if suddenly everything looks good again, sureing up the ship even if a storm misses the coast is almost always a smart thing to do.
The S&P 500 has begun 2016 with its worst performance ever. This has prompted Wall Street apologists to come out in full force and try to explain why the chaos in global currencies and equities will not be a repeat of 2008. Nor do they want investors to believe this environment is commensurate with the dot-com bubble bursting. They claim the current turmoil in China is not even comparable to the 1997 Asian debt crisis.
Indeed, the unscrupulous individuals that dominate financial institutions and governments seldom predict a down-tick on Wall Street, so don’t expect them to warn of the impending global recession and market mayhem.
But a recession has occurred in the U.S. about every five years, on average, since the end of WWII; and it has been seven years since the last one — we are overdue.
Most importantly, the average market drop during the peak to trough of the last 6 recessions has been 37 percent. That would take the S&P 500 down to 1,300; if this next recession were to be just of the average variety.
But this one will be worse.