Thursday, April 2, 2009

Midweek Rally: "‘It Was All a Dream … And You Were All There …’"

I try to vary the sources I draw on and today I linked to four of MarketBeat's FASB posts in "Markets: Why the FASB Decision Matters".
Rules are made to be broken however and this latest MB post is break-worthy:

...Those who believe this [FASB rule change] amounts to nothing more than pulling the wool over investors’ eyes are regarding the move with suspicion. “This decision decreases transparency and allows financial institutions to use fictional valuations on many of their toxic assets,” wrote Joshua Shapiro, U.S. economist at MFR Inc. “Whatever ‘write-ups’ result from this are unlikely to be valued very highly by markets, and this decision further obscures the true position of banks and other financial institutions.”

But never mind all that – the market likes pretty numbers. So, this rally has an eerie sort of quality to it. This FASB move is not a surprise, and so the upward move in stocks makes one wonder whether investors really would prefer to be left in the dark, as long as someone tucks them into bed and tells them everything is ok.

The more charitable interpretation is that this is a sucker’s move, as traders goad people into chasing rallies before the selloff that’s yet to occur. The action in banking stocks would support this view. The Philadelphia Stock Exchange/KBW Bank Index peaked just after 10 a.m. ET Thursday at 30.95, and has since faded, lately up a few cents to 29.23....MORE

This almost exactly matches my mood in "Midweek Trade: Goodbye to You".

(not to mention matching the straight and curvy lines on the monitors)