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How Long Can the Bernanke Asset Bubble Go On?

By Dr. Steve Sjuggerud
Tuesday, January 7, 2014

$10,000 would have turned into $22,832...
You would have more than doubled your money – without doing anything fancy. That's simply the total return on the stock market (the S&P 500 index) from 2009 through 2013.
U.S. stocks soared 32% in 2013… extending their winning streak to five straight years.
Astoundingly, four of the last five years have generated 15%-plus gains:
Total Return

These are fantastic returns.
It's hard to imagine that stocks could still go up from here... right?
My opinion is that U.S. stocks can still go higher from here... possibly much higher.
Let me explain why...
In short, the reasons that stocks have soared over the last few years are still in place today.
Earlier this year, when nobody believed in stocks, I published an issue of my True Wealth newsletter with the headline, "The Entire Stock Market Could Soar 95% in Three Years."
In that issue, I wrote, "Right now is the greatest moment to be an investor in my nearly two decades in the industry."
The facts that led me to that conclusion are still broadly in place today.
I highlighted three reasons why stocks should soar:
Right now, three incredible forces are working in our favor...
1) U.S. stocks are the best value they've ever been during my investing lifetime. The upside potential in U.S. stocks over the next three years could be the biggest in my near-20-year career. And all stocks have to do is return to their average.
2) Zero-percent interest rates are here to stay. Low interest rates are the real "rocket fuel" to this boom. The good news is there's no chance the government will raise interest rates over the next two years. Meanwhile, we have perfect "Goldilocks" conditions for investing... not too hot, not too cold – JUST RIGHT. THIS is the investing sweet spot... This is where the biggest gains happen over the longest stretches.
3) Lastly, today's zero-percent rates will force Mom and Pop America to "migrate" into the U.S. stock market... pushing the stock boom into "bubble" territory, possibly in 2015.

This story from nearly a year ago is still intact. We're just a little farther along in it.
•   Zero-percent interest rates are not going anywhere, yet.
•   Mom and Pop America have not fully migrated into the stock market, yet.
•   And while U.S. stocks have obviously gone up in price, they are nowhere near "bubble" values, yet. (They will be before this is all over.)

Based on these facts, I believe the game is still not over in the stock market. As I've described in the past, I believe we are likely in the sixth or seventh inning of this amazing game.
The thing is, the biggest gains typically happen in the final innings...
For example, the entire Nasdaq stock index returned over 100% from August 1999 to the peak in March 2000, before the dot-com bubble burst. You don't want to miss out on final-inning gains like that!
For many years, our main "script" has been that the U.S. Federal Reserve would keep interest rates near zero for longer than anyone could imagine... and that would cause asset prices (like stocks and real estate) to soar higher than anyone could imagine.
We've called this script the "Bernanke Asset Bubble."
After five years of gains in the Bernanke Asset Bubble, we certainly could see a "correction" in stock prices in 2014. The thing is, even if we have a correction of some sort in 2014, because the Bernanke Asset Bubble is so powerful, I believe we will see much higher highs before it's all over.
Why? It's simple... The same basic conditions that got us here in the first place are still in place.
In short, I am not selling my stocks. I want to catch those final few innings of this game – that's likely where the biggest profits will be made!
What are you going to do? Think about this before you sell... You don't want to miss those final innings...
Good investing,

Further Reading:

Brett Eversole agrees that the current bull market isn't over yet. "Based on history, we should expect another two years of gains," he writes. And when the next bear market does begin, "history says it won't be a 2008-style bust in stocks." Here's why...
With stocks at new highs, many investors are wondering what positions – if any – to take at this stage of the game. As one of Steve's subscribers recently said, "I don't really want to buy into some of the positions that have already run up so much." Read Steve's response here: How to Start Out in Stocks – Here at Record Highs.

Market Notes


Of all the members of the struggling commodity sector, none did worse than corn last year.
Last summer, we noted that contrary to what most folks believe, commodity prices haven't climbed much over the past decade. The benchmark commodity index – the "CRB Index" – is currently at the same level it was in 2004. It's also down 25% from its 2011 high.
As we mentioned a few months ago, good weather helped U.S. farmers produce a record harvest of corn. The result was a big downtrend.
Corn prices plunged 40% in 2013... making it the worst performer in the S&P GSCI Spot Index, which tracks 24 important global commodities. As you can see in today's chart, it's a steady bear market in corn...

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