Saturday, September 25, 2010

Jupiter boosts stocks; Saturn prepares for Ketu

The September rally took another step higher last week as positive housing and manufacturing data persuaded more investors to buy in. The Dow Jones Industrial Average rose 2% to close at 10,860 while the S&P500 finished at 1148. It was much the same story in Mumbai, as Indian equities continued their torrid pace with the Sensex again reaching the 20,000 plateau for the first time since January 2008. The Sensex closed Friday at 20,045 and the Nifty ended at 6018. Not to be outdone, gold futures touched $1300 an ounce and made a new all-time high. The Jupiter-Uranus conjunction is the gift that keeps on giving as the last weekend's conjunction is still overflowing with sunny optimism and an appetite for risk-taking. The early week gains arrived more or less on schedule as Tuesday's Sun-Jupiter aspect produced the expected gains. On Tuesday, Fed Chair Ben Bernanke reaffirmed his commitment for further stimulus measures to prevent a deflationary spiral from taking hold in the event of further sluggishness in the US economy. While the market had risen into his afternoon announcement, stocks embarked on a modest selloff afterwards and this down trend continued into Thursday. Friday's gains provided further evidence of the strength of Jupiter here despite the fact the conjunction is now separating.

This week offers another opportunity for a change in the trend as Saturn is thrust into the spotlight through its square aspect with Ketu, the South Lunar Node. As the planetary maestro of pessimism, Saturn's relative strength in the sky is an important indicator of where sentiment is tilting. When Saturn is prominent through the formation of significant angles with other planets, then the odds of a decline increase. When Saturn is tucked away into the background, then optimism has a better chance to flourish. The Saturn-Ketu aspect this week combines two clearly negative energies so caution and fear are more likely to manifest. That said, these two slow moving planets sometimes require a third planet to release their karmic payload. On paper, the role of that third planet may well be assumed by the Sun as it conjoins Saturn in sidereal Virgo on Friday. So the end of the week could be significant in terms of marking a trend change. To make things more interesting, Friday will be the first day of October and the first day of the fourth quarter. With the possibility of end of quarter window dressing, the new quarter may kick off with a bang. It will bear close watching.

"Man only likes to count his troubles, but he does not count his joys." -- Fyodor Dostoyevsky