Tuesday’s Drop: Is it just China’s bubble? Or is it America’s too?

It’s been three days since Tuesday’s large point drop, and the markets haven’t really recovered yet. Should we be concerned?
Chart from Yahoo! With Thanks.

This is just a personal opinion: but I’m not concerned at all. Why?

  1. The markets have risen steadily for months without a correction. In fact, many people believe that a correction was coming anyway.
  2. I’m not speculating in stocks at the moment. I do have some positions, but I have sold out my Tech stocks (taking a loss in the process).
  3. I don’t use money that I need or (I hope) will ever need.
  4. I wasn’t totally invested. In fact, up until this month I was sitting 25% in cash. Right now, I’m still about 11% in cash.
  5. I’m investing for income at the moment anyway. The stocks I have produced a fair dividend, albeit with some risk.
  6. With cash waiting, a correction like this could open opportunities to buy good stocks at attractive prices.

I don’t usually blog about the stock markets at the moment, since I don’t really have much expertise in them. But my hand was forced when I read John Mauldin’s latest newsletter Global Market Brief: China’s Engineered Drop written by George Friedman.

In the letter, he notes some scary statistics about the balloon that was developing China’s stock markets:

In January, the number of total traders on the Chinese exchanges grew by 1.38 million, an increase of 134 percent from a month earlier, while stock turnover was up 700 percent from a year earlier.

Given the penchant for Chinese to gamble anyway (and Taiwanese, I may add), whenever the stock market or property prices start to rise, or the lottery jackpots get bigger, we will see this phenomenon. Friedman notes that this is the first time that Chinese stock markets have had a major effect on Global Stockmarkets. One thing I’m sure about, this is not the last time!

I’d certainly welcome more informed comment from my readers…