Wednesday, March 3, 2010

The Daily Note - The Coming Storm

Perhaps better title would be "Eye of the Storm" but I don't expect calm waters with what is going to be proposed and discussed in DC over the next few days. I do not think of the issue as insignificant for traders; and I feel it will be only one of the significant steps which is making change in the way we will trade or live going forward.

President Obama makes daily speeches, but today's speech will reach into each pocketbook if Congress continues carrying out the agenda regardless of people's wishes.

Any bill being passed by Congress regarding the American people's Health Care management will have a huge impact on the economy soon and far into the future. Already taxation is being revved up for it although most Americans are uninformed of the fact. The payout to the people will not even become reality for a number of years, and by the time it starts, trillions of dollars will be already committed unto the "beneficiaries", and it will still not cover everyone. There may be even less accounting about where the money is being kept and spent as there is currently collected and paid out for Medicare, which all agree is wrought with fraud. So the amount of dollars that will be collected in the next 5-7 years prior to any payout may not even be "there" if Congress handles it as they do the Social Security funds.

Yet all this is supposed to bring security and guarantee for health to the population; so, for traders and investors the question becomes, which companies will deliver the most for investment dollars. I am not great at this kind of analysis, although I could take a couple of stabs just because I know a little about socialist states.

Insurance companies, most will suffer, the anointed ones will benefit. Competition among them will be less, not more, profits will be less as the government will collect more. Drug companies, will receive less dollars, research will be more scarce and not even pursued as much because government will nix a lot of expensive drugs off their approved list. Less Medical equipment will be purchased with less dollars being available for hospitals and medical clinics. Student enrollment into medical fields will drop as their incomes eventually will be controlled by government. Patients will no longer come to America as the medical advances will recede and become more like the rest of the world.

In short, medical dollars as the USA has known it will dry up. I will not compare other Social Medicine systems to what will eventually develop in the USA because it's really impossible to predict. But be assured it will not be as great as what we have enjoyed, just by the sheer changes in service choices which will have to be reduced and eliminated for the "good of all". I know that under such systems, black markets thrive and people will learn to tip prior to receiving service, and continue to tip to be assured of service. We will all have to learn the ins and outs of bureaucratic mazes lining palms as we go, for a favor. Am I describing an extreme change? I can only hope not.

So the moral of it all? Stay healthy and don't get old.

Happy Trading, Living and Dancing

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