WallStreetWeather.net Forecast For Week Of February 6, 2011

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Summary Of Last Week’s Influences:
Better than expected economic data indicating the economy continues to expand together with the “Bernanke Put” are two of the primary factors that helped propel the Dow and S&P to fresh 2+ year highs.

While the employment situation has been improving since the second half of 2010 (particularly since last August as the cycle of Saturn square Pluto came to an end), job growth is not increasing fast enough. Employers are still being nitpicky searching for the person who perfectly matches their criteria as if Saturn was still in Virgo. (With Saturn in Libra I guess employers are having difficulty making a hiring decision.)

While I thought that Friday’s nonfarm payrolls would have been better (36,000 vs. consensus estimates of around 150,000), there is the possibility that the number could get revised upward in the next report just as December’s was.

I have warned since the fall of 2009 that Jupiter conjoining Uranus could bring a spike in inflation but had been premature in predicting inflation would become a real problem starting in 2010 when Jupiter first conjoined Uranus.

Despite the Fed’s weekly buying as part of their second round of quantitative easing, yields on the 10 year note and 30 year bond reached their highest level since last May, primarily due to Fed Chairman Bernanke’s refusal to acknowledge that inflation has become a problem in the U.S. Yet there were more reports last week of companies such as UPS passing through or companies such as YUM Brands warning they will begin passing through rising commodity prices to consumers. And there’s been increasing evidence of companies stocking up on goods to stay ahead of price increases – evidence that shows that inflation expectations are starting to become “unanchored.”

Yet in his speech and Q&A at the National Press Club Thursday, Bernanke denied that Fed policy was fueling commodity inflation. For all his talk about the Fed working on a better “communications strategy,” Bernanke made it crystal clear during the Q&A session that “the way monetary policy always works is through interest rates and asset prices” which is the “whole idea” of this second round of quantitative easing. This is why the indices after being negative and choppy Friday morning turned positive in the afternoon since monetary policy is the foundation of the market's big rally since March 2009.

Most of last week’s news continued to be dominated by the protests in Egypt that became more violent as the Sun and Mars approached exact conjunction Friday. As I wrote in last week’s Forecast, “Mubarak runs the risk of being forced to relinquish his power this week.” Unfortunately Friday’s “Day of Departure” rally wasn’t able to accomplish its objective as true to the nature of his Sun and Mercury in Taurus, Mubarak is stubborn and resistant to change. So far the U.S. has not decided to cut/eliminate the $1.5-$2 billion a year the U.S. has given Egypt since 1979, with $1.3 billion of it going to military financing (with one third of that amount going to purchase U.S.-made military hardware - another form of U.S. corporate welfare for our military contractors).

Summary Of This Week’s Influences:
The Sun is the center of our solar system; without its energy, Earth and its inhabitants would not survive. The Sun is the central focus of a chart as it is the life force and the will to create. The Sun represents leadership and speculation – both require a strong sense of Sun-ruled confidence for success.

Sundays are ruled by the Sun, a day that many people pursue leisure activities. As the Sun, Mercury (news), and Mars (action) transits Aquarius the sign of technology and innovation, NASA announced today that its twin STEREO probes are now positioned on opposite sides of the Sun and have begun to beam 3D images of the Sun back to Earth. The probes will enable forecasters to not only more accurately project sunspot and CME activity that can affect all types of businesses; the information is also valuable to market watchers since solar activity influences stock and commodity prices. And as the press release points out, the probes will also track solar storms heading to other planets.

Tuesday is the 40th Birthday of the Nasdaq. The Nasdaq composite has increased almost 120% after making a multiyear low on March 9, 2009, yet is still down 45% from its March 10, 2000 record close of 5,048.62. The Sun in Aquarius harmonizing with Aquarius’ planetary ruler Uranus in Libra reflects the index’s emphasis on technology stocks. Uranus and Aquarius rule electronics, and the Nasdaq was the world’s first electronic stock market. As Uranus ends its 8 year sojourn in Pisces, it conjoins the Nasdaq’s progressed* Sun (exact February 28) as both oppose natal Pluto in Virgo. Additionally, the March 19 Virgo Full Moon conjoins the Nasdaq’s Pluto. This indicates that the Nasdaq’s volatility in either direction will be greater than the Dow and the S&P.

Yesterday Nasdaq OMX issued a statement after The Wall Street Journal reported the exchange’s computer network had been broken into by unidentified hackers who installed malware programs on a Web-accessible system called Director’s Desk containing information about the directors and top executives of several Fortune 500 companies.

Nasdaq’s disclosure of “suspicious files” on its computer servers comes one week after problems with its global index data service caused the Nasdaq Composite to be “unchanged” from the previous day’s close for almost the entire first hour of trading on January 28.

I wrote almost two years ago about cyber warfare becoming the new battlefield now. Pluto in Capricorn (2008-2004) indicates this is not just a government problem, but has major economic implications as well. Jupiter in Aries squaring Pluto (exact February 25) and Uranus in Aries squaring Pluto through 2015 indicate that cyber security is too lax.

Pluto is the wealthy lord of the underworld, and Pluto in Capricorn reflects the rapid rise in price of the wealth extracted from beneath the Earth’s surface. Pluto likes to carry out its business in private. Data mining (“business intelligence”) is occurring under the surface of the internet as companies attempt to monetize all the data compiled on individuals. Companies are doing this not only to better market their products/services to customers, but to sell the information they’ve gathered to other marketing interests either within their environment or for external purposes.

Back in the late 1990s, the dot.com mania was all about eyeballs (the number of people visiting a website). One Jupiter in Aries cycle later, data mining has become the new eyeballs. But as Uranus in Aries and Pluto in Capricorn start to square off during the next four years, the push to monetize all the information collected is likely to backfire as people rebel against the corporate big brother intrusion. Some individuals won’t be as angry about the privacy invasion but will demand companies compensate them for the exploitation of their personal information.

Venus in Capricorn squaring Jupiter in Aries as the week begins together with the Moon (sentiment) in Aries can create excess optimism that corporate profits will continue to expand.

The energies of Venus (money; banking) are particularly pronounced Wednesday as the Moon moves into Venus-ruled Taurus and Venus conjoins Pluto in Capricorn. Venus and Taurus rule net worth, while Pluto rules debt. This planetary pair tends to increase Treasury yields (the 10 year note auction which correlates to mortgage rates occurs this afternoon). The nation’s chief central banker will be testifying on the state of the U.S. economy at a House Budget Committee hearing chaired by Rep. Paul Ryan which is likely to move yields. Mortgage foreclosures, taxes, government aid, and corporate mergers could be some of the prominent financial issues now.

Friday’s First Quarter Moon in Taurus squares Mars and Neptune in Aquarius. The indices could be reaching a top between now and the February 18 Full Moon in Leo as news or rumors about deceptive financial conduct, fraud, or scandal leaks, raising the potential for a sudden selloff before the indices resume their upward trajectory. Egypt continues to be one of the top geopolitical hot spots. Other nations affected in Africa are Libya, Mauritania, Sudan, Zaire, and S. Africa. Action heats up in Pakistan and along the western coast of India. Gun violence could erupt in New Mexico, Texas, and Mexico.

Monday, February 7, 2011
Positive.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011
Positive trend bias.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011
Negative.

Thursday, February 10, 2011
Choppy/mixed to positive.

Friday, February 11, 2011
Improving conditions as day progresses; positive close.

* A mathematical calculation that moves the planets forward in time as a method of prediction.

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