Dow Diary: Suffered a Mid-Afternoon Slump

Dear Diary,

I was chugging along just fine until about 3 p.m., when suddenly I lost all my momentum. An hour later, the closing bell rang and I’d racked up a three-point loss. I just kind of petered out there. It’s hard to say why, frankly, but I’ll try to explain.

Obama and Congress reached a compromise on tax cuts. All the Bush-era tax cuts remain in place for two more years, payroll taxes get cut, and unemployment benefits get extended. There’s a chance that tax cuts will result in more hiring, which will bring down the unemployment rate and hopefully improve the economy — but that’s far from certain, and so I’m pretty ambivalent about that news.

Elsewhere, the price of oil reached $90 a barrel. Makes me wonder if we’re in for some inflation. Just something to keep an eye on, with interest rates so low.

One really good thing! McDonald’s, one of my stocks, hit an all-time high today! It’s always nice to see a quintessential symbol of American capitalism and excess reaching new heights. Hopefully the rest of my stocks — and the rest of American enterprise — will follow suit soon.

Gotta go,

The Dow Jones Industrial Average Dow Diary: Suffered a Mid-Afternoon Slump