It was service payment day minus 1, a traditionally very bearish day, and the ppi reported tomorrow is forecasted to be up 0.7% and the wire broker house issued a very bearish forecast (in opposition to rational expectations) that the market will go down 7% and then up 5% in the second half; considering all these it was an extremely positive day.

Brokerage houses are reporting the number of days they made money each quarter on proprietary and the magnitudes these days and it's amazing to see they make money, in Lehman's case for example, all but 2 days. Others have similarly impressive records. But considering the bid ask they must pay, and the magnitudes of losses that they must extract without risk from the weak, and the tendency of markets not to do the same thing too often, I consider the reports on their surface an impossibility . What is likely is that they report profits from transactions, including principal trades when requested to make a bid or offer to clients.

I received a must unusual heads up from psychiatrist Ms. Moonnut. She told me the key to market movements is Oprah Winfrey. She controls all the women and the women control all the money, and she tells them whether to be positive or negative through " the Secret " or something. I have given up watching financial news since the upside down promoter advertiser is always on, predicting Dow 5000 when I'm long, but I believe that it might be apt to watch Oprah instead.

Every now and then the stock market goes thru a period when there are runs of up or down opens. As of Monday, there was a run of exactly 5 down opens and exactly that number has occurred 53 times. Believe it or not, the opposite of exactly 5 up opens in a row has only occurred 23 times, and it's bullish after the 5 up opens.

There has been much talk about how AA and GE dismal earnings already reported are harbingers of the future. That it overrides the 50% prediction of 4th quarter earnings increases. I would demur on many counts. First, of what moment is it if earnings go up 15% on the year with a down or up quarter. Second, GE was down because they couldn't sell and AA is a commodity.

Jeff Watson writes in:

I read "The Secret" to appease one of my new-age friends who regularly buys into the snake oil du jour. "The Secret" tries, through pseudoscience, to explain "The Law of Attraction." Since the theories in that book cannot be proven or replicated using the scientific method, I remain very skeptical. However, one might postulate that there is an inverse correlation between the true believers of the theory, and success.

Nigel Davies adds:

If this is the same 'The Secret', it's an area I started investigating recently, much to the dismay of one of my more scientifically oriented friends.  This was due to the fact that this book was based around the ideas of one Charles Haanel in his one hundred year old book 'The Master Key'. And I got to Haanel as I understand he was a student of Baron Fersen, who practiced a form of standing still exercise similar to Zhan Zhuang.

All these guys were into mind over matter ideas, which recently received some attention due to some apparently very dodgy quantum theories of the mind body relationship, culminating in the reopening of pseudo-science flood gates with 'What the bleep do we know anyway'.

What can one conclude from all this? Perhaps mainly that Grandmasters really need to keep busy playing chess so as not to get sidetracked. But if there's any truth to this quantum stuff, Oprah and friends better be thinking very positive thoughts to counteract the presumed good guy who's telling everyone the US is in recession already


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