“Sell in May and go away.”
Historically that’s been good advice for investors, and the stock market has been weak lately. Technicians have lots of explanations for this phenomenon, but you know the real reason, don’t you? It’s because all the stock gurus head to the beaches in the Hamptons this time of year.
You know this because you’ve probably been at the beach yourself and are a tad behind on the hot issues of the day. FYI, here’s a quick recap:
* This spring gasoline prices rose 50 cents, which was the President’s fault. This summer they fell about 50 cents, thanks to the miracle of free markets.
* Estimates are the civil war in Syria has claimed 10,000-20,000 lives. Neocons have forgotten Iraq and are criticizing President Obama for not invading. They’re also criticizing him for pulling 23,000 troops out of Afghanistan this summer.
* JP Morgan traders surprised their CEO by losing $6 billion on derivatives and Barclays paid a $450 million fine for rigging the LIBOR interest rate during Bush’s 2008 financial crisis. Republicans blame Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner. Meanwhile Rep. Paul Ryan (potential GOP running mate) is calling for repeal of the Dodd/Frank Wall Street Reform Act because the banking system is clearly over-regulated.
* Environmentalists point to the melting ice cap, record high temperatures, widespread drought, and devastating wildfires as further evidence of climate change. They want to take out a little insurance now to protect our children down the road. On ABC, conservative commentator George Will responded, “It’s hot. Get used to it.”
* Gun sales are up in the aftermath of a shooting in Colorado that killed 12 and wounded 70. The NRA held a seance and asked the Founding Fathers to react. They say the Fathers would have loved having AK-47s in their arsenals, especially the Southern plantation owners.
* While you’ve been suntanning, red states have raced to install voter ID laws before the November election. They admit voter fraud has nothing to do with this. Look out suffragettes, they are now looking for ways to overturn the 19th Amendment.
* Critics say Obama is anti-business and he should have let the US auto industry go bankrupt in 2009. Meanwhile, the auto industry is on its way to a 14 million-car year in 2012.
* In Sacramento, the GOP is fuming over Gov. Jerry Brown’s push for high-speed rail and a tunnel system to bring water to Southern California from the Sacramento River Delta. “The guy’s 74 years old,” one complained. “Why’s he pushing this stuff that won’t be in place till the grandkids can vote?”
* Turning to foreign affairs, Mitt Romney alienated our British allies with negative comments about the London Olympic games. Fortunately he was not asked to comment on the Queen’s hat.
* While you were surfing, vendors at the Orange County Fair featured 2-pound, bacon-wrapped, deep-fried turkey legs. After Chief Justice Roberts cast the deciding vote in the Supreme Court to uphold Obamacare, local conservatives wanted to force feed him several.
Enjoy the beach. See you after Labor Day.