A Better View of This Decade
Thanks to technology and the smartphone world, we live in a 24-hour news cycle.
It can easily be mistaken for reality if you allow it.
Stories that would have taken six months to a year to unfold and understand a decade ago, all pile into an hour's worth of soundbites (or less), ultimately trailing off into the ether.
The “facts" are often little more than opinion, insinuation and fearmongering towards conclusions.
In fact, I’m still haunted by something I wrote way back in the tumultuous, gut-wrenching time of mid-March 2009:
"The market events of the last 7 months will likely later be seen (in the usual news-driven autopsy) as our generation's version of the Great Depression. The concern for investors now is that the fear is so deeply-seeded and the shell-shock so easily seen on their faces and heard in their voices, that they won't 'feel good about investing' again for decades...even as the world will almost assuredly repair, learn, dissect, adjust and recover."
Even now - at record highs - the upside remains the surprise.
Summer’s Gone, And the Holiday Haze is Here
Next week the Holiday Season dawns for 2019.
What a decade it’s been; home to the most hated bull market and economic improvement back-drop of all time.
It’s as stunning as it is sad.
And the haze will thicken quickly.
SO, if you get a sense that things feel choppy in markets:
- I would not be too worried, and
- I'd be thankful if we just chopped around here at these new highs, maybe deeply testing the breakout a few percentage points below if we could be so lucky.
Ideally, thoughts of "false new highs" or a "fake breakout" by the doomsday gang, permeating the misty media coverage would be soon to follow.
The long-reported "Black Friday" numbers will likely be doused in bad news this year - even as records will be set.
Why is that?
Black Friday sales have been underway for at least the last two weeks as retailers get a head start to the season with record jobs, employment and incomes soaking into the consumer base of the US.
And though the numbers may miss in the erratic hourly reports, remain confident.
The headlines will try to prise away your attention from football, turkey and more important time with family and friends.
Don't let it.
The slicing and dicing of the numbers will be wrong. Their "message" will be truncated by the reporting. Their impact will not even be recognized by the time they stop shouting fear from the rooftops.
A Better View of This Decade?
Maybe we could call it the greatest economic recovery of all time.
As the last decade ended, the patient was in the ICU, and needles and tubes were feeding energy and support back into the system from wherever we could supply it.
And the one goal was to rebuild confidence. Because in the end it is us who create what we see.
We as a group, as a population, are a mesh of fabric all intertwined. We are consumers, builders, thinkers, doers. We are what is the United States of America.
And we collectively came back from a trip to the edge of the abyss as we knew it.
We came back stronger, better, smarter, and we have set records in every single category.
So, as we step steadily toward the final Holiday Season of this decade:
- Don’t let anyone take that recovery from you.
- Don’t let them continue to scare you.
- Do not let them seep into your mind with those fear-mongering devices.
- Do not let them convince you, in the quiet recesses of your mind, that somehow there is another monster coming; one that’s bigger than anything before it and which is set to end our future.
Instead, be bold and confident and know this: The next decade is set to bring major new elements into our lives - in ways we cannot even begin to define.
They will be:
- Major shifts and changes over time.
- Highly disruptive - for decades - as old becomes new – again.
- Extremely opportunistic for those who plan ahead, prepare effectively, stay focused and remain patient and disciplined as it unfolds around us.