BULL’S EYE: There is an upside to the downside
The bears triumphed in 2001, but there is hope for the bulls as we grope in what feels like eternal darkness
In the dying days of the past millennium it was my nightly habit to monitor the countdown to the close of US markets. I preferred CNBC, mainly because I rather fancied Maria Bartiromo, the presenter of the channel’s Closing Bell programme.
The market was still convulsed by the tail end of the emerging markets crisis that had its epicentre in Indonesia, Thailand and South Korea, but which threatened to infect the whole world. It was a problem of unmanageable debt that spilled into currencies, which in turn spread the contagion throughout the global banking system.
The late 1990s and early 2000s also marked the ballooning and bust of the dotcom bubble, so it was a fascinating time to watch dear old Maria and crew spend the last hour or so of US trading trying to make sense of buying and selling activity. The tickers on the side of the TV screen would show an almost comical doomsday-clock pattern, resolutely red and getting redder...