A Robot, Votto's Rookie Card, and Fewer Nuclear Warheads

December 27, 2010

Major market indices climbed this week. The DJIA gained 0.71%, the S&P 500 increased 1.03%, and the Nasdaq rose 0.86%. Value stocks outperformed growth stocks. And the small cap index rose 1.21%. The 10-Treasury yield remained unchanged, closing at 3.39%.
American and European stock indices climbed back above their pre-Lehman Brothers collapse highs. Further, commodities gained as retail sales and investor optimism fueled market momentum. The table appears set for joyous Christmas tidings, and a potentially bountiful 2011 market.
Much like the warmth and spirit of the holidays seem to repeat themselves year after year, the market tends to rebound from the periodic catastrophe's that await unattended capital around history's darker corners.
In all, we have much to be thankful for. In 2008, many felt like their worlds were imploding as they ate their Figgie Pudding and sipped their spiked Nog. Today, many feel like they sauntered up to the abyss, looked over, and managed to step away before tottering into its dizzying depths.
Problems still abound. The leaders of our political duopoly continue to pay lip service to the ideals put forth by our founders, only to cater to deep pocketed constituents behind the scenes. The budget deficit is a Cerberus guarding the gates of fiscal rectitude that our ruling class has not the will to tackle at the moment. That is worrisome.
However, perhaps tis the season, but this week we saw something rarely glimpsed emanate from our nation's capital: like-minded unity, bordering on the serene.
While the ratification of the START Nuclear Arms Treaty between Russia and the U.S. may not gird the imaginations of the global investor-class, it does underscore the oft forgotten ideal that the popular kids in D.C. can occasionally come together and accomplish something. Even if it requires the threat of nuclear annihilation.
At the very least, I can lay my head down on Christmas eve and worry a bit less about inbound Russian warheads. And so long as my two young sons draw breath, every stressor negated can only be a positive. Less to worry about. Risk mitigated.
This world seems to more easily accelerate than slow down. To more effectively add, rather than subtract. So, when we can eradicate of few Oppenheimer's deadly toys, we have achieved something worthwhile.
So, while there remain many topics on which we disagree, Mr. President, please accept my gratitude in this regard. In a season when goodwill and world peace facetiously cross the lips of many humor-seeking toastmasters, my sons and I appreciate your efforts.
My boys also pray that Santa has overlooked much of this year's misbehavior. They hope for a few gifts beneath our tree. A robot. Joey Votto's rookie card.
As for me? Your efforts in this regard, Mr. Obama, are sufficient. Less probability of nuclear war seems gift enough for me.
As we close out one year and look to begin another, I cannot help but ponder the speed with which time passes. The ability to hold on to the precious moments remains no more possible than the chances of grabbing a passing breeze. We can only hope to be more aware of such moments as they come and go.
As for you, dear reader, we wish you and your family much love and joy. In the coming year, we will not rest in helping you to prepare for the polifiscalnomic events that lay ahead. Till then, Merry Christmas. And stay tuned.

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