Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Walmart stock falls below $47 per share: continuing drop reflects a public that won't spend

The faulty reasoning behind the economic stimulus plan now fragmented into several versions in the U.S. Senate can be seen in the continuing and shocking decline in the per share value of the nation's most celebrated retailer, Walmart.

I sold out of Walmart for a profit for myself and my mother's estate at $61 per share last summer. We made only $10,000 and $15,000 respectively, but the investment was worth it for a short-term reward earned in only one-month's time.

Then I knew, because of God's grace and watching CNBC 12 hours a day/five days a week, that it was time to get everything out of the market above 13,000 on the Dow.

I also watched FOXNEWS' investor TV shows on Saturday mornings. The original "Trapper John" from the M.A.S.H. TV series is a featured panelist and a most cautious and wise investor. I partly relied on his advice to also get out before the floor fell from under the financial markets.

People asked me all the time how I knew to get out of the market when all the folks with big titles were telling people to stay in. I first invested the time, an incredible amount of time, when everyone else was having fun.

And then there was God. Always God. He always reminded me to never be greedy, that all blessings come from Him. They do. I am alive to prove that. And He, only He, gave me a fortune while others lost so much.

What I can't understand is why so many people still today are so committed to greed and refuse to get out the market as it prepares to plummet to 7,000 on the Dow this month. And that will be this month -- as it heads down to 5,700 by the turn of the year or soon after.

God only helps those who help themselves. Get the greed out of your system, America.

A lot of people also over the past three decades have made nice profits from owning Walmart. I first bought it in 1984 and celebrated when the stock rose and then split every few years.

Today, Walmart fell below $47 per share as Costco's told market analysts that its year to year sales in January would be substantially lower. All retailers face the same fate.

The moral of the story is that the American people are no longer going to spend as they used to. Any stimulus checks are going to go into savings decimated by the stock market's decline or to pay off mounting credit card or delinquent home mortgage debts.

The American people rightly are in shock. And they don't trust Washington, Congress, Jim Cramer, Larry Kudlow and Barack Obama.

Walmart remains the top place to buy for household groceries to make ends meet. I stop there every Saturday afternoon before Mass. But its dropping stock price shows that even the best is not enough to deliver the needed profit in this economy.

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