Thursday, March 12, 2020

Persimmons, peas, pawpaws, hickorys and the Stock Market

Persimmons, peas, pawpaws and some hickory scionwood.
Pink surveyor's tape marks the persimmon saplings.

I planted eleven persimmon trees out at the lease. Some of them had miserable excuses for roots and may not survive.

I dug up some pawpaw suckers. They will go to the lease as well. They won't go in the fruit planting but beneath the black walnut and elm trees that are east of the planting.

I planted peas in Mrs ERJ's kitchen garden. I think she would be fine if all I planted was one cherry tomato, one zucchini and put the rest to snap peas.

Then I went to Rusty's house and we cut scionwood from a couple of hickory trees for a gentleman in Kentucky.

Their next stop was the lumber yard.
The Stock Market
Only 1/3 of my 401-k is in equities. Well, actually, only 29% is, as of mid-morning.

It is a fool's game to try to pick a bottom. My sense is that it still has a LONG, LONG way to go.

The Price/Earnings ratio from 1930 until the present.
The S&P 500 Price/Earnings ratio was about 22 when the market started to puke.

The Price/Earnings ratio hit 7 in 1949 and late 1970s. If earnings don't get impacted (ha!), then the market losing 65% of its value is a defensible floor.

But everybody knows that earnings are going to tank. Who is going to buy crap from Amazon when Amazon cannot get it from China and UPS/FEDEX/USPS are prohibited from making non-critical deliveries? Oh...and no paychecks.

An old rule on Wall Street is to never try to catch a falling knife. I expect the market to catch its breath when the Dow hits 12,000 but then to collapse again into the 7000-to-8000 range. That would be the rough equivalent of the S&P500 pausing at 1500 and then sliding to a floor of 1000.

Would I bet my life on it? Nope. That is why I still have 29% in equities. The central banks could debauch the currency to avoid marking-to-market and price discovery. That would be a mistake because some mortally wounded companies NEED to go under.


  1. Joe, what's up with your ride? It's a single real horsepower?
    Pretty cool, never have to go to the parts store.
    And they can reproduce endlessly!
    Colorado is steadily increasing in covid19 considering they refuse to test hardly anyone.
    I was flu like sick couple weeks ago, ok now. Then my 80yo mother got sick, went to doctor and they wouldn't test her.
    They only test people who have a known connection to out of state hot spot or you have flu symptoms with pneumonia.
    Public gatherings are beginning to close here. I help out with my 4H friend, they are canceled starting today.

    1. I like watching what the Amish are doing. I would have expected a bigger trailer for a trip to the lumber yard but they were going to make do.

    2. What do you think they had in the blue tank on the trailer? Nitrous oxide?

  2. Hi Joe. How are those Steiner black locusts growing? Do you know of any sources for the root cuttings? —DJ

    1. Allegheny is the pick of the litter with regard to ease of propagation. I am going to encourage root suckers this year. Then I intend to sever the roots and leave in-place to develop feeder roots. I will write about it if it works out.

      Sorry, I don't know of a good source of root cuttings.

  3. Thanks, Joe. I got to your blog via contorted web searching for black locust info but stayed for the amazing stories.


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