Tom Armistead

About the Author Tom Armistead

I'm a well-informed retail investor and post on SA in order to expose my thought process to critical examination and comment from readers. It makes me a better investor. I'm particularly proud of bullish macro articles posted in 2009 and later, in which I presented ideas that encouraged me to invest very profitably in a rising market. I also did articles on individual stocks, many of which contained insights not available elsewhere. Finally, I wrote a number of thoughtful articles critical of financialism and the lack of ethics on Wall Street. I do not post for compensation, as I am concerned that editorial policy encourages and pays a premium for articles that invite the reader to speculate on the short term movements of microcaps, penny stocks, and controversial issues. The best way for me to monetize my insights is to invest accordingly. As a retail investor, I don't give investment advice. I write about what I'm investing in, and the thought process involved in decision making and stock selection. Hopefully some of what I write is of benefit to others, by sharing my experience as I interpret it and helping them improve their investment thinking and process.

An Interview With Mr. Market

He stops by my office in an 8 x 12 rear bedroom in the starter home my wife and I bought over 40 years ago, a corpulent gentleman with a white mustache, dressed in vintage clothing. He gives me offers, most of which I can easily refuse, on items in my portfolio, and offers various items on sale, most of which don’t interest me, and many of which are over-priced. Not really that stable, some sort of chemical imbalance I suppose.

We were talking about that (the chemical imbalance) the other day, and he got to whining about QE, which he calls “green river.”

Well that green river never was much good, doesn’t pack a wallop like a good old-fashioned rate cut used to do. Dr. Bernanke and now Dr. Yellen not only made me drink it, they insist on hosing it into me by means of every available orifice, until it comes out my ears and I am all blimped up, can’t hardly move, let alone give out a bid/ask spread.

I clucked sympathetically, and mentioned that the market seems to be going up lately, for no good reason that I can see. But he assured me that there was a reason for it.

Of course there’s a reason for it. Any fool can read the paper, or go on-line, and there is a reason every day for why Oil goes up, or down, or the S&P 500, or the Dow, or Gold, especially Gold.

So lately everything is going up because of Trump. Just think about it for a minute: I am going to be receiving massive doses of deregulation. I remember when Bush was President, he put those regulators back in their place, kept them from messing with the banks, made them into servants of the banks, as a matter of fact. Those were the days, party until the music stops, like there was no tomorrow.

I opined that the last episode ended badly, and reminded him of how Timmy Geithner had to resurrect him from a near death experience. He pretended not to hear me, and launched into a discussion of the EPA.

That’s the genius of Trump, he picked the perfect man for the EPA job, Scott Pruitt, he understands climatology a lot better than them goddamn scientists, he’ll get them to drill baby drill and the Energy stocks are going to fly, let me tell you, they are going to fly.

He had the bit between his teeth, and moved right along to the minimum wage issue:

Trump is going to take care of all them $15 per hour people, coming in on their buses and disturbing folks who are out shopping or buying a hamburger, then they get back on the bus and go on to their next stop. Andrew Puzder is the man, if he can’t stop them, nobody can. He understands the issues, Hardee’s is a hamburger stand, he’ll roll back minimum wages and if you’re not long Mickey D’s you should be.

You got to understand, this market is run by the 0.0001%, the whole system works best when they do best. Anyone who doesn’t get that is standing in the path of progress and they will be swept aside, drained right out of the swamp.

I had some thoughts on what Mr. Market would say about Steve Mnuchin for Treasury, but by then I was tired of listening to the old fart venting his nonsense and I bid him adieu: “see you tomorrow.” But before he left, he furnished a key insight, which I am going to share with you.

Deregulation is a hell of a lot better than that green river, it really packs a wallop, I can get high just thinking about it. There are some things that could be done with derivatives they haven’t even invented yet, if those regulators would just get out of the way.

Everything will be more efficient, factories won’t have to worry about spilling stuff, or workers getting out of line, or anybody complaining about the smoke coming out of the stack. It is going to be good for business and what is good for business is good for the US of A.

And off he went, into a cold gray day in Connecticut, higher than a kite, happy as a clam in the mud, laughing at some secret joke he had just thought up.


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