Monday, 6 April 2015

How Can We Know The Dancers From The Dance?

"Sell in May and go away" is an adage from the past referring to stock market strategies.  "Sell in April and go to the Devil" does not have quite the same ring but is something we might consider.  In the UK we have a fractured administration but not a Parliament for the next month at least.

In the USA and elsewhere there are political uncertainties that are the culmination of many others and real decisions are avoided.  The creation of the Chinese led Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank is said to herald the end of US world supremacy.  It might, on the other hand if the investment is not true investment it might just the cause of a another global bust.

For the state of California the New York Times now asks if endless growth had ended and if the economic effects of drought with other trends may mean that this agent of US growth is now another place needing support and subsidy.  If the dry period continues it may well be that the Governor has done too little too late.

There is a lot of pessimism around together with a realisation of the uncertainties arising from too many wars and conflicts together with too much debt and other liabilities.  The way these have been patched over with banks and governments lending each other money and back again is not sustainable however many would like it to be.

There are many experts who fear that another fuse is about to blow and it could be bigger and more brutal than the last one.  The battle to promise spending and declaim unpopular adjustments to finances may make matters worse.  Our present austerity could turn out to be the last gasp of a golden age in comparison with what is to come.
Among the many what if's in the UK ignored at the moment is the value of the pound.  If there is a changed situation after May and at the same time the markets become more variable, just as the pound may go up it can go down, a "Black Swan" event of this kind can happen.

Let us say to roughly parity with the Euro.  If there is a left wing Europhile coalition in place, what price them deciding to join the Euro to hoorahs from some parts of business at least?  Never mind the propaganda tirades coupled with the hard man soft man threats and promises.

As a coda to this has been the news that the recent run of the production of the Royal Ballet classic "Swan Lake" is the last, picture above.  What a new production might be like we do not know. It might be one essentially classic, but simplified with a lot of the "business" taken out and replaced by more concentration on the principals.

At the other extreme there will be pressure to have one that reflects our present times and obsessions.  It could be set in Norris Green, Liverpool, currently listed as among the most deprived parts of the UK.

There is a lake there in Walton Park which once had swans.  You could do a production that reflects local gang activities, a grossly dysfunctional community and the destruction of nature in the area with all the now compulsory sex and violence.

So in the worlds of finance, international politics and ballet we might all start with a Black Swan but finish with a lot of dead ducks.

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