I’ve just really been getting fed up with domestic and world markets the last couple of days, what with headlines such as this one in the WSJ this morning:
Markets Swoon on Fears
Stocks Pummeled on Signs of Global Slowdown; Money Flees to Dollar and Yen
Investors around the world scrambled for safe havens as fears of a global economic slowdown grew.
The yen briefly touched a 15-year high against the U.S. dollar, the euro suffered its worst selloff in nearly two years, and global stock markets tumbled.
A day after briefly cheering the Federal Reserve’s announcement it would buy Treasury debt to bolster the U.S. economy, investors Wednesday began fretting about the negative implications of the move: The world’s biggest economy still needs extraordinary government help…
Enough! No more bad news on the economic front!
Here’s the thing: I firmly believe that this whole business of the economy being up or down is all in our heads. Or if not our heads, in whatever parts of our bodies are extremely emotional and easily frightened about the future. (Yes, there can be conditions that are not in our heads — like a pestilence that wipes out our food supply. But I haven’t noticed anything like that happening. We just panicked back in September 2008, and we’ve been panicking ever since.)
If we have confidence, we will act in a way that justifies confidence. We’ll take risks, make investments, spend money; people will be hired and will in turn take risks, invest, and spend, and things will just be booming.
But if we’re all nervous as a long-tailed cat in a room full of rocking chairs, everything freezes up. There’s no commerce, no jobs, no hope.
So enough with the swooning. The last two years have been more than enough for me.
I can’t afford it, but I think I’m gonna run out and buy something. Of course, you other several billion people need to do the same thing. So let’s get on the stick.