More data coming, more volatility, lesser ammunition left





Jan 08 2009
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What have you been doing right after the fireworks to welcome the New Year 2009? To be precise, did you rush in to the stock market – local or overseas? I did write that Jan 2009 is the month of orgasm but I also pointed out that unless you’re a swing trader, don’t try to fool around with the current bull. Unlike fast-food bull does not like to be told to have a short orgasm. It like to enjoy its’ natural way of having orgasm. Therefore if you’re a long-term stock investor then you’re not fit to play this fast-game of making money. But it’s definitely a good time for you (if you’re a long-term investor) to unload some of your stocks, if you have not already done so previously.

I’ve also said that Dow Jones 9,000 mark is an important level to be observed simply because this is a strong resistance level. Of course there’re many reasons why the bull started to kick some butts but at the same time there’re equally many data queuing to be released, not to mention the earnings season report card. Retrenched workers are having difficulties finding new jobs and people are not spending. Wal-Mart Stores Inc. slashed its forecast for fourth-quarter earnings – a bad sign as discounters should do better during current tough times. Technology stocks are taking the bitter pills with Dell Inc., Lenovo Group, IBM, Intel Corp. and even Microsoft Corp. are grumbling about poor business and will lay off its work force.

It’s amazing to watch how the Middle East’s most developed city of Dubai is feeling the heat of economic downturn and is scaling down. After the WCT Berhad and Meydan LCC joint venture to build a RM4.6 billion racecourse in Dubai was cancelled sending the WCT’s stock nose-diving, the attention is now on other players that have projects engagement in Dubai namely IJM Corp Berhad, Gamuda Berhad, Sunway Holdings and Muhibbah Engineering. The world’s second largest hard disk drive manufacturer, Western Digital, is about to sell its plant in Kuching to Hitachi, another hard disk manufacturer and the heat is definitely on Penang at a later stage. Have you wondered why the Malaysian Minister begs you to buy Malaysian-made product out of the blue (sure, the country will never enter recession)?

If unemployment figures due to be released Friday show that the U.S. lost more than the expected 500,000 jobs in December then get ready for another anxious moment. President-elect Obama has started his job earlier than the schedule when he’s already working with his team to design a new stimulus package to keep United States economy flowing. It appears that the zero to 0.25 percent interest rate currently enjoyed by the country is insufficient to pull the nation out from the mud. And now the Bank of England cut its interest rate by half-point to 1.5% – the lowest in its 315-year history. But what will the reaction from the investor communities about the American’s deficit of $1.2 trillion for the fiscal year 2009?

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