While much of the his ad hoc shock-and-awe governing style may be welcomed by supporters, there is a sense that all is not quite right at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. Polls shows Donald Trump is less popular than he was on Election Day while 40% of the country want to see him impeached already. Some of this is due to growing pains, perhaps not unexpectedly given that Trump and his inner circle have no experience in government and are trying to implement historic changes in DC. Creating chaos may not even a bad thing for Trump, Bannon et al., as it keeps the establishment off balance and guessing as to their next move. With so many storylines injected into the news cycle every day, Trump can evade closer scrutiny, especially since the media has been given reduced access to the administration.
But my understanding of these chaotic early weeks for President Trump is informed more by some difficult astrological alignments. It's impossible to say if things are unfolding as Trump would like them but the planets are suggesting that life in the Oval Office is proving more difficult than a reality TV show. Judging from his impulsive Mars-dominated personal style, he may not be thinking too far ahead. I suspect his improvisational approach to problem-solving is leading him into more than a few blind alleys due to the twin afflictions of Saturn and Rahu, the North Lunar Node.
I've already discussed the upcoming Saturn retrograde station in early April which aligns exactly with his natal Mars. This is not a full-strength aspect so there is some possible room for him to maneuver to avoid its full impact. But Saturn-Mars alignments are usually not very good and this one is likely to give Trump some additional headaches as his initiatives and goals will be blocked or will fail to achieve their desired ends.
The other problem for Trump is that transiting Rahu (9 Leo) is moving closer to his Ascendant at 6 Leo. This is usually not the kind of transit a new president would want as it is associated with chaotic change and disruption. The President will likely feel the disruptive and sudden effects of this transit when it is triggered by fast-moving planets that align with the Ascendant. This occurs this week as the Sun opposes Rahu and conjoins Ketu. The Sun represents authority and ego so we should expect Trump's air of authority to take a hit in the coming days. The resignation of Michael Flynn yesterday already coincided with the Sun opposite Mars within just two degrees As the Sun now moves on to oppose the Ascendant through Friday, we can expect Trump to stay on the defensive. As I previously noted, Jupiter is a less reliable source of successful results for Trump now that it is retrograde (since Feb 6) and moving away from its aspect with his Sun.
But Trump's problems are likely to worsen on the weekend and into next week as Mars opposes his Jupiter and in so doing also aspects the USA Sun and Saturn. This is a very difficult alignment for government. Disputes and conflict are likely to be ratcheted up significantly during those days (Feb 18-23). Remember that Jupiter is President Trump's current dasha lord so those Mars aspects to Jupiter are more likely to cause problems for him. This could take the form of a new scandal that focuses on legal and ethical questions (Jupiter).
The Trump administration may become even more besieged and embattled in March as Mars aligns with Rahu, the North Lunar Node. This will highlight the approaching Saturn-Mars alignment in Trump's personal horoscope and it will also activate both the Ascendant and natal Rahu in the USA national chart. Rahu is dasha lord in the USA chart so any afflictions to Rahu are more likely to coincide with significant events. In this case, scandal and secrets are more likely to be in focus since the USA's Rahu is placed in the 8th house.
So while we can see that Trump's approval ratings are likely to continue to fall for the next several weeks, it is unclear what the long term effects may be. Trump's chart shows several times of turbulence and distress over the next four years. The September-November 2018 period looks especially difficult as transiting Rahu is conjunct the 12th house cusp and Jupiter sits on the malefic 4th house cusp symbolizing "the end of the matter". Transiting Mars is also opposite his Mars. While one could construct a case that Trump will resign during this alignment, a most logical and likely reading of those influences would be a GOP loss of control of the Senate and/or the House due to public dissatisfaction with his administration. That's not really a stunning prediction in any event as many administrations suffer defeats in the midterm elections. But Trump's chart looks especially negative so the losses may be more damaging -- quite possibly the loss of both Houses of Congress.
And I still think that 2019 will be the time of the most intense difficulty for Trump. He could be fighting for his political life at that time as Rahu transits through his 12th house and conjoins both Venus and Saturn. It is certain to be a very tough time for him. And this happens just as both Saturn and Rahu are in aspect with the USA's Sun. The Sun represents government and specifically the President, so that double affliction spells very bad news for Trump in 2019.
Weekly Market Forecast
Stocks generally held their own last week. The up trend has continued so far early this week as the Dow is still trading above 20,000. India's Sensex is almost as strong and remains well above 28,000 at the end of Tuesday's trading. This mostly positive outcome is not unexpected as I noted in last week's forecast that the ongoing influence of the Jupiter-Uranus alignment would act as a support for stocks and some commodities as well. Gold and oil are also trading near multi-month highs after the recent pullback in the US Dollar.
This week could see some declines starting as early as Wednesday on the Mercury-Mars alignment. While some downside looks quite likely here, the declines do not look big enough to change the basically positive outlook in February. Buying may well resume early next week as the Sun conjoins Ketu, the South Lunar Node, and Mercury aligns with Jupiter.
For more details and analysis on market trends for this week, this month and this year, please check out my weekly MVA Investor Newsletter. The newsletter is published every Saturday and includes extended discussion of US and Indian stock markets, as well as gold, oil and major currencies.