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2 Dec 8 2009 @ 10:00am by Matt Smith in Capital Markets, Crude Oil, Economy, Global Energy, Natural Gas

Life is Good.

As we near the end of this year, I find myself reflecting more and more on the past 12 months, and how utterly incredulous it has been. I hope I am fortunate to live for another few decades so I will be able to look back on 2009, as it will be the year which defines this generation, for better or for worse.dow burrito

From a Summitized perspective, the three defining moments of this year have to be the sheer Armageddonesque feel of the equity market low in March, the September $2.40 print on natural gas, and the dramatic recovery in crude prices from the now paltry price of $32.70 in January.

As we  move into 2010, there will be a whole host of new market influences to face – but none are likely to be as shocking or as unexpected as those seen this year. After all, a horror movie is rarely as scary the second time round. 

crude oilThat’s not to say all is well. On the contrary, a solid US recovery is unlikely at best. The underemployment rate scares me more than Freddie Krueger, frugal consumer spending prompts Jaws-like overtures, and the (tongue-twisting) continuing consumer credit contraction spurns a Psycho-like shower scene soundtrack.

What lies ahead for us in 2010? At best we could see a US economy showing gradual improvement as job creation begins, the housing market improves and consumer spending increases. However, it is more likely that the effects of the fiscal stimulus evaporate and the economy gets dragged lower once again, while the mountain of debt created this yenat gasar will only serve to raise worries about the long-term future of the US (and possibly inflation). When Ben Bernanke comes out this week and says the US economy faces ‘formidable headwinds’, you know we are not set for plain sailing next year.

But emerging markets give me faith that the rest of the world (particularly the US and Europe) can be dragged kicking and screaming to its feet, as long as the BRICs do not spur such a rally in commodities to end up hampering a global recovery.

2009 has been a tremendous year to have lived through. What doesn’t kill us makes us stronger. And wiser. And ready to duke it out with 2010. And as we move forward, and prepare for next year – whatever it may bring – one thing to remember above all is the catchphrase of our most brave and courageous Summiteer ……… life is good.

Marilyn Lesher is rock 'n roll.

2 Comments on this post:

  1. marty walsh says:

    Thank You for feeling what we feel! And thanks for all you support when we family members cant be there. Kudos and good karma to you!

  2. Stone says:

    Great article Matt. Life is good!

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