When the Other Shoe That Drops Is A Bomb

Written by Adam English
Posted November 28, 2017

Anyone remotely involved with finance is a news junkie. In fact, I’d say that is the number-one requirement for the job.

Number two is not letting it just wash over you. Not letting it passively become part of the zeitgeist. Actually finding the handful of “actionable” insights and turning the whole 24 hour barrage into something truly useful.

It is a process that normally ends with nothing worthwhile, I’ll admit. Often, the useful information is either too easy or too hard to find.

Apple gets a bunch of generous reviews for a product with features that Samsung rolled out years ago? Odds are APPL already moved while the story went to press. Too easy.

A typhoon is bearing down on a manufacturing hub for computer and smartphone component factories in Southeast Asia? It’s much harder to match the storm path with factory locations. That plus opening an account that can trade Asian stocks will make it too hard for most.

What about the bigger stories and trends, though? What about the kinds of developments that, if you read the headlines leading up to them right, make or break fortunes?

How about these, in particular?

From the New York Times on Sunday — “Long Divided, Iran Unites Against Trump and Saudis in a Nationalist Fervor”

So many stories have come out that you may have forgotten about this headline from The Guardian on November 7th — “Saudi Arabia accuses Iran of 'direct aggression' over Yemen missile”

And it's been even longer since CNBC ran this headline on May 20th — “US-Saudi Arabia seal weapons deal worth nearly $110 billion immediately, $350 billion over 10 years”

The U.S. is firmly entangled as a source of diplomatic support and unprecedented war matériel deals with one side of a regional proxy war right as a missile was intercepted over its capital (Riyadh, Saudi Arabia). There's no obviously dominant country or faction, and Russia is bound to back Iran.

The war is already raging in Syria and Yemen and poised to spread across the Middle East, Central Asia, and Africa.

Add China to the opposing side and that is exactly what happened in the lead-up to the Vietnam War, complete with shadow wars in neighboring countries.

Swap those for Germany, Austria, and a couple others, and that is what helped pull the U.S. into BOTH world wars.

How about these two headlines?

From the Los Angeles Times on August 9th — “North Korea has made a nuclear weapon small enough to fit on a missile. How worried should the world be?”

That may have faded from memory with all the generic saber rattling and talk of sanctions, but consider it next to this headline from CNBC on November 16th — “North Korea is 'on an aggressive schedule' to develop a ballistic missile submarine”

Combine the two and North Korea could sail right past the missile defenses in South Korea and launch within miles of the West Coast.

These aren’t just existential threats in an unstable and uncertain geopolitical sense. They are existential threats to your well-being and wealth.

Nor are they just doom-and-gloom headlines. They are reminders that you need to have contingencies in place for the kinds of events that no one plans for but everyone sees coming.

Far too few people do that. Especially these days, with the markets near all-time highs, stock valuations richer than all but a few short and unsustainable periods in history, and unprecedented complacency and apathy.

A financial writer who is one of the best at looking at today’s headlines and seeing how to plan for the future just unveiled his thoughts on the economic and financial outlook we face.

He is a legend in his own right, having almost single-handedly launched the independent financial newsletter industry on his own.

He has been on the right side of history for over half a century, and he has the accolades and returns in his portfolio to back it up.

Even if you don’t end up agreeing with him, you should know who he is and what he is thinking.

After all, everyone who publishes anything covering finance and markets outside of the mainstream media learned how to do it from him. Myself most certainly included.

You should learn from the best, too.

Take care,

adam english sig

Adam English

follow basic @AdamEnglishOC on Twitter

Adam's editorial talents and analysis drew the attention of senior editors at Outsider Club, which he joined in mid-2012. While he has acquired years of hands-on experience in the editorial room by working side by side with ex-brokers, options floor traders, and financial advisors, he is acutely aware of the challenges faced by retail investors after starting at the ground floor in the financial publishing field. For more on Adam, check out his editor's page

*Follow Outsider Club on Facebook and Twitter.

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