After flat markets during an abbreviated super-storm week, the Dow rallied about 250 points on Monday and Tuesday. Wednesday saw stocks open lower and continue lower. The 250 point gain of the previous two days was wiped out, plus an additional 60 or so points for good measure. Why?
Is it likely that the Dow Jones Industrial Average is flirting with five-year highs right before we are about to go into recession? The answer is obviously no, but there is another factor that has been introduced into the equation.
Since Obama became president on January 20, 2009, the stock market has risen at an annual rate of 16.4 percent, even after adjusting for inflation. Obama has presided over the fifth best stock market record of any president.
Stock markets around the world continue to levitate despite the fact that the fundamentals behind the global economy continue to deteriorate. But that weak and worsening economic data didn't stop investors from sending stocks higher.
Chief executives of the world's biggest companies have long boasted about going green to help woo more consumers. But some now warn their businesses will only continue to grow if their operations become increasingly sustainable.
It takes some kind of faith to place your retirement savings in the hands of forces beyond your control and yet maintain not only your emotional equilibrium in the present moment, but trust in the future.
Being a small business owner I'm an eternal optimist. But small business owners need to pay close attention when the media says that something "increased" or "got better." Always say to yourself: "Better? Compared to what?"