The joke on trading desks was that this was the Prozac market, sort of the "What me worry?" approach to equities (which may explain the Nasdaq at 5048 in March, 2000).*
This excursion down SSRI lane was triggered by the thought "If we run out of lithium, what will the bi-polars do?".
In today's earlier post "Lithium: In Bolivia, Untapped Bounty Meets Nationalism" I forgot to mention that Sociedad Quimica y Minera (SQM) is the world's largest publicly held lithium miner, if you're looking for a way to play.
Here's the headline story from Environmental Capital:
*Cramer had similar thoughts, relayed in this NYT article from 2002:
Saudis like to say that the stone age didn’t end for a lack of stones. But could a lack of lithium end the electric car age before it begins?
“Peak lithium” is back in focus, as the New York Times looks at Bolivia’s quest to cash in on the world’s biggest reserves of lithium, a key component in batteries. Simply put, global automakers and battery makers need to ensure a steady supply of lithium to power the expected electric-car revolution, but Bolivia’s populist government and its embrace of resource nationalism raises a lot of concerns about access to the country’s mineral wealth. TIME recently did a big takeout on Bolvia’s lithium, too.
Concerns about global supplies of lithium are a lot like the debate over peak oil. Some experts believe the huge increase in electric cars will actually strain the world’s lithium supplies in a few years; as with peak oil, “above-ground” factors like Bolivia’s politics may be just as critical as geology. Other experts figure lithium supplies are ample and exploding demand will just juice more lithium exploration, as happened with oil.
Either way, though, as hybrid and electric vehicles take a bigger share of the market, that threatens to push up lithium prices. That would make batteries, the costliest part of electric cars, even pricier, further threatening the economics of the electric-car revolution. A recent report by Lux Research called lithium availability the “ultimate limit” on electric cars’ future.So what’s the alternative? Skip lithium altogether....MORE
...''My own view is that one reason the investor class, including me, missed the downside was serotonin,'' James J. Cramer, a former hedge fund manager and author of ''Confessions of a Street Addict'' (Simon & Schuster, 2002), said, referring to a substance in the brain that antidepression drugs augment. ''Prozac and all those other drugs banish the 'this is the end of the world' thoughts,'' Mr. Cramer explained. ''Which means you are not as anxious as you should be about an obvious down side.''...