Review and preview 

Stocks closed lower Friday, ending the third quarter on a downbeat note as investors fretted about the path ahead for earnings, interest rates and global economic growth. All three indexes are down at least 21% for the year. The S&P 500, Nasdaq and small-cap Russell 2000 are now all on three-quarter losing streaks for the first time since 2009. – Eric Wallerstein and David Marino-Nachison, “Stocks Close Lower Friday; S&P 500 Down for Third Straight Quarter,” Wall Street Journal online, September 30, 2022.

Fed Vice Chair Lael Brainard on Friday underscored the need to bring down inflation, saying the central bank is “committed to avoiding pulling back prematurely” on restrictive monetary policy. Sarah Min, “Dow Tumbles 500 Points to End September Down Nearly 9%," September 30, 2022.

With six planets retrograde, we will see about that (quote above).

It’s been a rough Mercury retrograde cycle (September 10-October 2). From a geocosmic perspective, that’s because it coincided with the most potent celestial pattern of the year involving Jupiter, Saturn, and Uranus, all in “hard” aspects to one another.

First, we are now completing the fourth and last passage of the 45-year Saturn/Uranus waning square cycle, a combination that has coincided with widespread supply chain disruptions and a major contributor to the highest inflation numbers in 40 years. It is also coinciding with world chaos as major economic systems and financial markets are breaking down and fears (Saturn) of a third World War are increasing. The Dollar is soaring as the Fed sharply increases interest rates to fight inflation, and other currencies, like the British Pound, Euro, and Yen are collapsing to a new decade and even record lows. At the same time, Russia’s Putin is attempting to annex parts of Ukraine while threatening a nuclear strike if western powers interfere with his sham elections. Did the people who were displaced from these territories get a vote?

Second, Jupiter made a double semi-square (hard aspect) to both Saturn and Uranus in the past ten days. Uranus has the power to break support (or resistance), which is the domain of Saturn, and Jupiter does everything in a  “big ” way. So, many stock markets broke to new yearly lows last week, U.S. Treasuries broke to their lowest level since November 2007, and the British Pound to its lowest level … ever.

Third, Mercury has been retrograde for the past three weeks. The last “high” was the half-primary cycle crest of September 12 at 32,504 in the DJIA, the first trading day after it turned retrograde. On Friday, September 30, the last trading day before it turns direct, DJIA was down to 28,715, a loss of nearly 4000 points in less than 3 weeks. When a market makes a cycle high near the time Mercury, Venus, or Mars turn retrograde, it will often make its cycle low near the time it turns direct. This is probably the only study offering some hope at the moment for bulls. However, that is exactly the psychological climate when markets do reverse. That is, when investor sentiment (collective psychology) is most bearish is often near the time when rallies begin. And now that Mercury is turning direct and Jupiter, Saturn, and Uranus are breaking up their difficult aspect formation with one another, there is a cosmic reason to think a bottom of some importance is close at hand.

Short-term geocosmics and longer-term thoughts 

“Victimization fits laziness like a glove… (as) Victimhood becomes a currency.” – Vivek Ramaswamy, “The Victimhood Olympics,” from “Real Time with Bill Maher,” HBO, September 23, 2022.

Importantly, there was this (from John F. Kennedy during the Cuban Missile Crisis with Russia): “Above all, while defending our own vital interests, nuclear powers must avert those confrontations which bring an adversary to a choice of either a humiliating retreat or a nuclear war.” Choosing that path would be evidence of a “collective death-wish for the world.” Kennedy’s insight that nuclear weapons changed the facts of human history was shared by Ronald Reagan. Like Kennedy, he respected Russia’s nuclear arsenal. Reagan said, privately and publicly, that “a nuclear war cannot be won and must never be fought.”  – Peggy Noonan, “Enduring Lessons of the Cuban Missile Crisis,” Wall Street Journal, October 1-2, 2022.

If we were analyzing or trading the stock market purely on geocosmic studies, we would consider buying now, for this current cosmic setup exemplifies the basic principle of market timing using geocosmics. That is, the middle of the heaviest planetary transits (aspects or stations) is when markets most often reverse their trends. That is happening now (September 21-September 28 +/- 1 week). There are two exceptions to this basic principle, however: Mercury retrograde and strong aspects involving Uranus. Instead of reversals, Uranus can coincide with breakouts that tend to be extreme and last approximately 4-8 trading days after they are exact. With Mercury retrograde, you often get a day or two of rallies and it will appear the trend has changed, only to see the Trickster violating those signals in what is known as fake outs. This is why we do not advise position trading during Mercury retrograde, a rule that served us well during the last three weeks (although our very short-term trading strategies worked out very well).

This Trickster behavior can continue as long as five days after Mercury turns retrograde. Thus, even though the actual bottom might be happening right now in many markets, it is also possible this instability and erraticism could last another week. But even then, a respite might be short-lived, for on October 23, Saturn will turn direct and on October 30, Mars will turn retrograde. It’s like a broken automobile that gets repaired and then breaks down again until you actually solve the cause of the breakdown, which might involve having to replace the part or system altogether.

We recently posted to Twitter, “If you can’t stand the wind, go inside and close the door until the storm passes.” In real terms, the wind was more than just a wind this time. It was a hurricane, and in other tweets we discussed this September 21-28 period +/- 1 week as a “cosmic and mundane hurricane,” too. Hurricane Ian has been that and more. Going inside and closing your doors would not have helped in this case. You needed to evacuate. Closing your positions and standing aside (which was the market message for traders) would have helped for many. But many people in the line of Hurricane Ian have lost their homes, which is a real tragedy. Unfortunately, this tragedy also fits the nature of Uranus (high winds) being squared by Saturn (loss) and semi-squared by Jupiter (excessive).

Regarding mundane threats to world peace, there are two things I would like to bring up. First, Mars will turn retrograde on October 30 at 25° 36’ Gemini. It will form a square to transiting Neptune in Pisces three times, between 23-25°of Gemini and Pisces, October 12, 2022-March 15, 2023. Iran’s natal chart has Mars at 25°31’ Pisces, square to Neptune at 20° 28’ Sagittarius. The U.S. has Mars at 19° 51’ Gemini and Neptune at 22° 22’ Virgo. In other words, there is a grand mutable square between Mars/Neptune in the charts of both nations over the next five months, and during the time that Mars will be retrograde (October 30, 2022-January 12, 2023) and touching off these aspects in the U.S. and Iranian charts.

Iran is undergoing major protests, which could threaten (and even succeed) in dismantling the current regime. The U.S. could be drawn into this. At the same time, it is on the brink of a possible nuclear event ignited by Russia. Russia has just escalated its conflict with Ukraine as Mars is about to turn retrograde, and in fact while six planets are retrograde right now. In previous columns going back to spring, we had discussed how the tide could likely turn in favor of Ukraine based on these retrogrades (especially Mars) as well as the 1/8 semi-square cycle of Jupiter to Saturn. And here we are. Russia is escalating again as the next important signature approaches: Mars retrograde. This is our second point, which we describe once again: Mars retrograde is the time when the aggressor is usually the loser.

The good news is that this can all end in the spring, when the final Jupiter/Saturn semi-square takes place on March 21, and Jupiter will then proceed to its favorable sextile with Saturn on June 19. Spring cannot come fast enough. We need to be strong and not lazy until then while Mars is retrograde. Our leaders need to be, too. Venus just entered Libra on September 29, where it will remain until October 23. This can be favorable for compromises. It may also be favorable for equity markets, although Silver tends to decline during that time. Rather than seeing yourself as a victim in this unstable time, see it as an opportunity. For instance, if other studies show a tradeable low is forming in Silver and/or Crude Oil, consider it. These two markets are highlighted the next three weeks.

Stay strong. Be conscious of your health and stay warm as winter approaches and Mars squares Neptune, which relates to the immune system and blood cells (red and white). Reach out and help those in need (Mars/Neptune), but do not let yourself become a victim to those who are lazy and prey on “woe-is-me” themes of victimization and exhibit passive-aggressive behaviors (other expressions of Mars/Neptune).

Disclaimer and statement of purpose: The purpose of this column is not to predict the future movement of various financial markets. However, that is the purpose of the MMA (Merriman Market Analyst) subscription services. This column is not a subscription service. It is a free service, except in those cases where a fee may be assessed to cover the cost of translating this column from English into a non-English language. This weekly report is written with the intent to educate the reader on the relationship between astrological factors and collective human activities as they are happening. In this regard, this report will oftentimes report what happened in various stock and financial markets throughout the world in the past week, and discuss that movement in light of the geocosmic signatures that were in effect. It will then identify the geocosmic factors that will be in effect in the next week, or even month, or even years, and the author’s understanding of how these signatures will likely affect human activity in the times to come. The author (Merriman) will do this from a perspective of a cycles’ analyst looking at the military, political, economic, and even financial markets of the world. It is possible that some forecasts will be made based on these factors. However, the primary goal is to both educate and alert the reader as to the psychological climate we are in, from an astrological perspective. The hope is that it will help the reader understand the psychological dynamics that underlie (or coincide with) the news events and hence financial markets of the day. No guarantee as to the accuracy of this report is being made here. Any decisions in financial markets are solely the responsibility of the reader, and neither the author nor the publishers assume any responsibility at all for those individual decisions. Reader should understand that futures and options trading are considered high risk.

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