Tuesday, March 3, 2009

The Bottomless Pit

With the market falling faster Monday than the snow blanketing much of the East Coast, you had to feel as helpless as the communities ill-prepared for what's likely to be this winter's last gasp. Unfortunately, we're all now understandably reluctant to say the same about the breathtaking descent on Wall Street.
There is no day any more, it seems, when it's safe to assume the worst is behind us. The dizzying free fall this time led by the post of the biggest quarterly loss in U S corporate history. All the billions it has already received still not enough to put American Insurance Group, AIG, back together again. The hope is that another $30 billion now on the way will make it whole again.
We are running out of silver bullets and are leaking hope that there's a bottom to this pit almost as fast as our 401Ks and IRAs are shrinking.
Certainly we've lost faith in those who are supposed to know better than we average investors who, only weeks ago, were saying, after the market fell to 8,000, that the worst was behind us. I mean, who do you believe any more? Or do you take some comfort in the belief that the blunders of the Bush Administration brought us to the edge of the cliff? Whatever solace that once offered is rapidly dissipating.
For all the points he's scouring in the popularity poll, you have to wonder if President Obama's exorcising the market's demons from the floor of the New York Stock Exchange would make a dollar of difference. (Although he might want to consider a visit there.)Small wonder hiding it under the mattress is creating a lot of interest these days.

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