Wall Street is going toward a straight free fall — no one knows what’s going to happen with the market

5 min read

Talk to enough Wall Street executives and you come away with something very unsettling: No one knows what’s going to happen with markets and, by extension, the economy — and it’s scary. 

I know what you’re saying, these guys never really know what’s going on or they would have seen the 2007-08 financial crisis months before it happened.

Truth be told, they did see it coming, but most were too terrified to say anything about it, while others, like hedge funders, didn’t want to draw attention to their market bets. 

No, this time is different.

Market prognostications are all over the place because of huge policymaking mistakes: spending, money printing and more that screw with their normal analytical tools.

The politics and policies of two presidential candidates add even more confusion. 

In other words, it’s not a great time to be an economic forecaster, or for that matter an investor or consumer or American worker trying to prepare for the future.

And we can thank the clowns who have been setting public policy, and ­doing some really crazy, unprecedented stuff. 

Yes, the ruling class we have in this country is maybe the dumbest that history has had to offer. 

Again, it’s a bipartisan idiocy, the Wall Street types will tell you, that dates back at least two decades, though the more recent vintage of so-called experts acting like idiots is even more troubling because the stakes keep getting higher. 

Former (and maybe future) President Donald Trump looked steady and confident against a stammering, overmatched Joe Biden in Thursday’s debate.

But Trump’s no bargain either.

Consider, he endlessly vowed to build a southern border wall to prevent mass migration with its pressures on the welfare state, but because he spent much of his four years in office spinning his wheels on petty feuds, he never got it done. 

Biden, meanwhile, has spent nearly four years as a barely sentient leader of the free world (as his debate performance showed again).

He compounded the immigration catastrophe because he’s afraid of alienating the open-border, progressive base of the Democratic Party while the nation’s social fabric frays under pressure from the importation of poverty and lots of crime. 

But it’s both sides’ wonky stances on the economy that is really giving forecasters fits.

Trump added an estimated and staggering $8 trillion to the national debt during his four years in office, and you can’t blame it all on COVID-relief measures and the lockdowns that stalled growth in his last year in office.

Before that, he did some great things like cutting taxes and reducing regulations, and it propelled things like employment and wages.

It was a time of peace and prosperity, perfect for getting entitlements (i.e. future costs of Social Security and more) in order and taking a blowtorch to the boated mess of the federal government. 

Yet he did just the opposite.

When COVID hit, he kept spending nearly until his last day in office when it was clear the economy was bouncing back and the pandemic was on its way to ending. 

Trump offers more of the same if re-elected, which means a whole new level of uncertainty to consider given the size of the debt now on the books, which at some point we will have to pay back. 

Biden’s spending binge 

Speaking of debt, its size is getting bigger and more troubling because when it comes to spending, Sleepy Joe is Trump on steroids.

He promises to double down if re-elected: Student debt relief, more spending on useless green energy boondoggles, a blowout of a dubious industrial policy of EVs everywhere and government-subsidized chip manufacturing is just the start. 

If he’s replaced (a real possibility after his debate performance), whoever steps in will offer the same policies without the verbal incoherence. 

Recently, the media has been buzzing (no doubt after being prodded by Sleepy Joe’s handlers) that Trump has increased the debt more than Biden, but Wall Street pros tell me that’s a bit of an apples-to-oranges comparison since the economy largely stopped during Trump’s last year in office.

When Biden took over as the economy was on the mend, he went nuts with stimulus spending. 

The pros point to an overlooked stat.

By early next year, the Congressional Budget Office is projecting that the growth of debt under Biden will likely match or exceed Trump’s.

It stands now at near-historic levels, 120% of the entire US Gross Domestic Product.

That’s down from its pandemic high, but not by much to really matter. 

What happens if we need to spend more because of war?

What happens if our creditors decide the US dollar is too commoditized because of all the spending?

Biden has infused both our economy and culture with hypercharged wokeness through his appointees to the regulatory state.

Trump is looking for ­revenge against a political party that is literally trying to put him in jail. 

Wall Street is now pulling its collective hair out trying to input those variables into its computer models, with lots of crazy stuff that has created the black-box economy where forecasting is nearly impossible. 

That’s why smart money is so scared. 

Charles Gasparino is the author of the forthcoming book “Go Woke, Go Broke: The Inside Story of the Radicalization of Corporate America.”

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