We want order where there is no order. We want satisfaction when we have nothing to be satisfied about. We want conviction when you can't have conviction. We want certainty based on specific patterns, and the patterns aren't holding up.
That's how I feel about today's lack of coherence and clarity.
For instance, we fear something big happening in Ukraine. Yet gold is not going up, it's going down.
Second, we know that several hot spots for oil, notably Iraq and Libya, have gotten to the point where we have to lower estimates of production. But oil continues down its merry old way.
Third, we have gasoline coming down and down hard, but we have Target (TGT) bemoaning the challenging environment. Given gasoline's decline and the rising employment picture, we have to ask, what the heck is challenging about that?
We have companies with stocks that are reversing and reversing rapidly. Gannett (GCI) rallies up 3% in the premarket, trading on a remarkable restructuring. Then it plunges as if the company did nothing to bring out value. Actavis (ACT) delivers a terrific quarter with conservative guidance, and it gets clocked, and then it reverses up 5 points for no particular reason. American International Group (AIG) reports a sharply better than expected quarter, and it rallies 3% in after hours, and then it gives up the whole gain and then some.
Meanwhile, the expensive stocks, the ones with great growth but super high price-to-earnings multiples, namely Netflix (NFLX) and Tesla Motors (TSLA), act fabulously, and Amazon (AMZN) is barely down on a pretty miserable day. They are market leaders with no one following them.
We try to make sense of these, and we come up with one common theme: They don't make any sense. They are random moves not deserving of explanation.
As is often the case on an incredibly sleepy day in the doggy month that is August.