Charles Hugh Smith foresees a thunderous crash and believes the stock market has already topped out. SLL isn’t arguing with him. From Smith at oftwominds.com:
The banquet of consequences is being served, and risk-off crashes are, like revenge, best served cold.
The ideal setup for a crash is a consensus that a crash is impossible–in other words, just like the present: sure, there are carefully measured murmurings about a “correction” but nobody with anything to lose in the way of public credibility is calling for an honest-to-goodness crash, a real crash, not a wimpy, limp-wristed dip that will immediately be bought.
What I’m calling for is a rip your face off, weeping bitter tears over the grave of the speculative wealth that you thought was forever crash. All those buying the dip because the Fed will never let the market go down will be crushed like scurrying cockroaches and all those trying to rotate into the next hot sector or asset class will also be crushed like scurrying cockroaches because when the Everything Bubble pops, well, everything pops. There is no shelter in a risk-off cascade.
The crash is coming as a result of multiple mutually reinforcing dynamics, the first being that no “serious person” believes a crash is possible, much less imminent. In no particular order, here are a raft of other causally consequential triggers of a cascading market crash:
1. As I noted in my call for the top, Is Anyone Willing to Call the Top of the Everything Bubble? (September 6, 2021), there is no history to support the widespread confidence that the extremes of over-valuation, leverage, euphoria and speculation last forever, or even much longer than the lifespan of a cockroach. We’re well past that benchmark into unprecedented insanity. So what happens next: squish.
Just for the record, the Dow topped out on August 13, the S&P 500 topped out on September 2 and the Nasdaq topped out the day after my call, September 7. (Close enough for gummit work…)
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