Stock Market Reprise
In late July of 1984, an ACT panel at the AFA conference included a half dozen people discussing the Market potentials. David Williams and Norman Winski were accurate, forecasting a rise in 1985. The balance of the panel expected the market to either drop dramatically in 1984-5, or to go sideways (little overall change) or to be “crazy” (sudden flips). If David Williams and Norman Winski’s predictions continue to be accurate, the market is due to go down in 1986. Can we guess when?
I have long taught that secondary progressions are more reliable than transits, or that they are needed to support transits before we can assume major action. If transits were as straightforward as traditional astrology teaches, and if our chart for the original formation of the N.Y. Stock Exchange is accurate, the N.Y. market should have fallen apart at least twice during this past year. In early March, transiting Saturn made a station and went retrograde opposite the MC-Sun in the chart for the original New York market calculated for noon, May 17, 1792. We have run this chart more than once in the past, and hope that interested readers still have the chart. Transiting Saturn then formed a grand cross at its July station. It turned direct at 22 degrees of Scorpio, opposite natal Mercury, square natal Pluto and progressed Uranus, all at 23 degrees of the fixed signs. The market wobbled a bit at these times, and went on rising. Often, when a planet has a retrograde period, the final passage over the first station, when it moves into new territory, marks the major action, the end of one phase and a new beginning. Transiting Saturn ended its challenge to the fixed conflict in the market chart as it entered Sagittarius in November 1985, but the market ignored it!
What are our choices after that 1985 performance? We can decide that the original chart is not a valid one for the market. We can decide that transits are not a reliable key to details; that they have a more complex meaning. We can decide that progressions are more reliable than transits, or are needed in addition to transits for the latter to be more than minor blips in the picture. I favor both the last two theories.
Saturn symbolizes the “rules of the game” and the power figures who enforce, create, or manipulate the rules. Though the SEC was formed to prevent illegal manipulation, most people believe it still happens. A paranoid interpretation of the activity would suggest that the prominent Saturn symbolized the wealthy power-figures who managed to push the market to new highs to lure back the small investors. The latter were mostly sitting on the sidelines, leaving the market to the pension funds, insurance companies, etc. Once the “little guys” bought back into the market at the top or near it, the big guys could get out just before the crash. The small fry would then experience the traditional meaning of Saturn, loss and depression as reality outside of their control came crashing down with the prices of their stocks. The manipulators would have maintained their power and wealth in this scenario. The losers would reap the consequences of what hindsight showed to be impractical judgment. Feedback is rarely immediate. We commonly act during one Saturn aspect and get our report card for the action during a later Saturn aspect.
But, as David Williams pointed out on the ACT panel, for 54 years, the market has gone up in the years that ended in 5 and gone down in the years that ended in 6. Most of the real professionals involved in the market must certainly be aware of that history, and their expectations of history repeating could help produce a self-fulfilling prophecy. Astrology is not the only tool for generating such self-fulfilling expectations. If this theory is part of the picture, we can expect the market to go down in 1986.
On December 2, 1985, as this article was being written, the DOW lost the most in a single day since August 6. Of course, the loss was explained as “profit taking,” a very reasonable explanation when the market had been going up for months. Astrologically, transiting Mercury was just leaving the square to the natal Ascendant while transiting Saturn was just coming into the same square. But just two days later, on December 4, the DOW jumped 25 points to a new high. On December 5, the DOW made it past 1500 for the first time in its history, though it ended the day slightly below the December 4 close. The volume traded on December 5 on the N.Y. market was the fourth highest total on record.
Can astrology make sense of such reversals? Market commentators give credit to the loose money and low interest rates produced by the Federal Reserve as it tries to prime the pump to forestall a depression. Astrologically, transiting Saturn stays square the natal Ascendant of the market chart through December. Transiting Mercury stations opposite natal Sun-MC from December 5 to 12. The general optimism fits the fire-air emphasis with Sun, Venus, Saturn, and Uranus in Sagittarius while Jupiter is in Aquarius and Mars is in Libra. But, is the optimism unrealistic, as Saturn suggests?
A look at secondary progressions may help to clarify the picture. Progressed Ascendant is just starting a quincunx to the progressed mean north node of the Moon at the same time that progressed Mercury is starting a square to both the progressed mean nodes, and the progressed Moon is starting a square to progressed Pluto. The Moon aspect holds through January 1986, but then it intensifies for another two months as it moves into the square to natal Pluto, progressed Uranus, and the conjunction to natal Mercury. Mercury remains square the mean and then the true node to August 1987. The Ascendant aspect to first the mean and then the true node will last for nearly three years. The progressed Ascendant will reach a conjunction with progressed Pluto in October 1986, starting a period of years during which it will participate in the Pluto-Mercury-Uranus fixed T-square. I call the quincunx the “closet-cleaning” aspect. With several such aspects in the progressed chart, the scene is set to either change the details of our action, to improve efficiency, or to move in a new direction, dropping the past. The market chart started 1985 with several quincunxes, and at that time, it shot up. It ends the year with a new batch of the same aspect, and as of the first week of December, it is moving in the same direction. But, quite commonly, action started with quincunxes changes, reverses, in mid-stream. 1986 should give us a real test of the reliability of this chart as a key to the N.Y. market, as well as a chance to see whether the progressed Moon and lengthy progressed Ascendant aspects to the fixed T-square coincide with the downer we did not get with transiting Saturn.
During the progressed Moon period, through the winter of 1985-6, the second week in March 1986 looks especially interesting. Halley’s Comet is retrograding into Capricorn, transiting Mercury is making a station to turn retrograde at one Aries conjunct transiting Venus moving forward, a new Moon opposes natal Mars in the market chart, transiting Mars squares its natal position, and transiting Jupiter crosses the Descendant. The market often goes up with aspects to Mars and Jupiter, even when the aspects are traditional stress ones such as squares and oppositions, so we could have a blow-out that week, whether up or down. Personally, I think a move down is more likely, but I’m not putting any money on it.
From May into August 1986, the progressed Moon will cross the natal Sun and MC of the chart, if the reported time is accurate. Setting the N.Y. market chart up with local houses in Washington, DC puts 25 Taurus 20 on the MC, so the progressed Moon crosses it in April-May of 1986. News involving government action or power figures may be important through that whole period of April to August. As readers already know, Halley’s Comet makes a station from mid-May to mid-June on the MC of Reagan and our Constitution and the Ascendant of the Declaration of Independence chart for July 4, 1776. The comet will also oppose the progressed Antivertex of the stock market chart, and form octile and trioctile aspects to natal Neptune and Saturn across the third and ninth houses. These aspects suggest some kind of challenge to the faith of the nation, and the market, not to mention the banking system, rests on faith.
Much more might be said, but one more Halley station seems especially important. From late October 1986 to the end of the year, Halley stations on the natal mean north node of the Moon in the second (money) house of the Stock Market chart. The same degree, zero Libra, is the IC in the chart of our Federal Reserve, the manager of our money. I have already written repeatedly of the aspects in the Constitution and Declaration charts for late 1986. If we are going to have a debacle with the market as the Pension Funds, Insurance Companies, Banks, etc. jump to avoid being the last ones to sell, that period of October to December 1986 seems the most likely time for a crash.
In addition to secondary progressions, I find solar arc directions a useful technique to point out current issues and possible times of action. There are many relevant aspects in 1986 in the market chart. Directed Pluto will be crossing the Ascendant while directed East Point crosses the Descendant and directed Mercury squares the Ascendant. Pluto signifies our ability to share the resources of the planet, so among its many associations are debts, letting go what is not ours or what we have outgrown, learning how to enjoy the world together or engaging in power struggles if we fail to learn, etc. The East Point is a key to personal identity in action similar to the Ascendant. Mercury is one of the rulers of the tenth house, so a key to power, whether connected to Law, authority figures, consequences of past action, or other forms of letter ten. Directing this natal T-square to the Ascendant indicates a truly important period.
Directed Saturn, natural ruler of letter ten in our alphabet, is opposite Venus, ruler of the natal tenth house, repeating the potential for major changes in the power structure or for important results of past activity. Directed Uranus is conjunct Pluto, square Mercury, and opposite the East Point; another activation of that natal T-square in fixed signs which emphasizes the need to handle possessions and pleasures moderately, and to develop the capacity to share them. Directed Mars is sextile Sun and quincunx Neptune, forming a yod which implies a turning point and tendency to move in a new direction. Directed Moon is quincunx its mean node in the eighth house, another suggestion of a move in a new direction and possible separations. The Moon moves into Scorpio in September 1986. There are many other aspects, but the preceding certainly emphasize the picture we see in the progressions.
When many charts point to the same important decision periods, we should be able to read the writing in the sky. Of course, the problems might involve the debtor countries abrogating their debts, and/or the wealthy might decide our banking system is shaky and that Swiss banks are safer. Money can be moved in the flick of an eyelash with electronic banking, and a sudden departure of massive sums would further destabilize our banking system. The details of the year still depend partly on the actions of humans, though much of what is coming has undoubtedly been set in motion already and can only be modified, not cancelled. Our own place in the show depends on our own actions. It is time to be practical.
P.S. This article has focused on the N.Y. stock market, but our world today is highly interconnected. The world tin market in London closed on October 24, 1985 when the tin cartel ran out of money being used to maintain its price. Several involved banks and brokerages which had loaned money to the cartel faced bankruptcy which might have started a chain reaction that could ripple through the world financial situation. Still more recently, the stock markets in Singapore and Kuala Lumpur closed due to the bankruptcy of a major international firm. Each time such failures occur, observers who know their history remember that our past panics and depressions have followed similar failures which followed periods of inflation and increasing debts, and which led to a domino effect. These markets may reopen, but the faith of and in the financial world grows visibly more shaky as we move toward our Capricorn report card.