Dow 10,000 Before Year End!

| August 12, 2009 | 0 Comments

Lately I’ve been really positive about the markets.  But a few nights ago, all of my thinking was thrown for a loop.

I had dinner with my friend, Jay.  We sat on his back porch eating grilled chicken and Caesar salad.  The scotch flowed freely.  After a couple of drinks, our discussion took an interesting turn.

Jay’s business is struggling.

A few years back, he could count on earning more than $100,000 a year.  Now he’s struggling to make half that.  With crushing mortgage payments, putting kids through college, and the constant pressure to save for retirement… he is exhausted.

And Jay’s not alone.

Millions of people are out of work.  One business manager I know has a telling story.  Every day for the past three months, people have been walking in off the street looking for work.  It’s getting so bad, he’s considering putting up a sign – “No Jobs Here”.

Those lucky enough to have a job are finding their work hours cut.

It’s impossible to gather accurate figures, but some estimate millions of workers are working fewer hours.  Just look at the auto industry.  Mandatory plant closings… reduced work days… lower pay… reduced benefits.

It all adds up.

I had to ask myself again… Am I too positive on the markets?

Then I cracked open my issue of CFO magazine.  Don’t laugh.  You know I read some really strange stuff.  You never know where a great idea or an interesting data point might come from.  What I found in my magazine was surprising…

They were looking at data from surveys of CFOs around the world. Who better to talk to than the guys holding the company checkbook?

Two things jumped out at me.

The first was a question regarding their outlook.  Simply, were they more or less optimistic about the company’s financial performance?  An amazing 40% of CFOs in the United States said they were more optimistic.

But that’s nothing when you look at the responses out of Asia.

Asian CFOs are apparently an optimistic bunch.  Greater than half said they were more optimistic about their company’s financial performance.  (Maybe we should spend more time looking to the Asian emerging markets for investment ideas… but that’s another article.)

It was the second item that really grabbed me.

Nearly 3 out of 4 CFOs are expecting the economy to recover in the next 12 months.  And, a shocking 53% of those believe the recovery will begin before the end of 2009.  Isn’t that astounding? A huge number of CFOs see the US exiting the recession in just a few months!

I don’t mean to bore you with all these facts and figures.

What I want to point out is simply this… CFOs are normally a pessimistic bunch.  And as a group, they’re seeing not only their own businesses recover, but the economy improving as well.

Take it as a warning.  Individual stories of struggle and misery are sad.  But don’t rely on them as an indicator for the whole economy.  If we see a recovery half as good as what these CFOs expect… I don’t think Dow 10,000 can be too far behind.

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Category: Stocks

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The Dynamic Wealth Report works with a number of staff writers and guest experts who specialize in everything from penny stocks to ETFs to options trading. These guest analysts post under the 'staff writer' moniker for ease of use.

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