Financial Astrology

stockmarket Can astrology really predict the movement of the markets? Skeptics would answer that the only thing astrology can predict is a person's gullibility. While many believers of astrology do tend towards the naive "New Age" stereotype, an impartial review of the historical correlation between stock prices and planetary motion clearly suggests that prediction is possible, if only under certain conditions. One of the difficulties in assessing the relationship between prices and the planets is the large number of variables involved. Most astrologers work with at least 9 planets, 7 aspects (i.e. the angular separation between two planets), 12 houses and 12 constellations, to say nothing of asteroids, fixed stars, nakshatras or whatever other supplementary parameters one chooses to mention. Taken together, this produces a huge number of possible permutations that can be correlated with market trends. In the absence of strong transit contacts to the particular first trade chart of a stock exchange or company, it is very hard indeed to discern where the market will go. In those conditions, astrology may fare no better than chance. But where close angular contacts are made between current planetary positions and those in the first trade chart, prices will follow set patterns as described by the established symbolism of the planet and angle involved. We will examine how this works in more detail below.

There are several basic strategies for using astrology with stock market investing. The first, and most important is obtain the first trade data of a stock, ETF, currency, etc. and cast a horoscope for that time and place. Over time, this chart can then be analyzed with respect to transits, progressions, and dashas in order to ascertain the likely price movements of the stock. Essentially, the basic rule of financial astrology is: Favourable planetary alignments through transit contacts with benefics during the dasha periods of well-placed planets will tend to yield price increases, while bad aspects from bad planets -- a square (90 degree) aspect from Saturn for example -- will usually push the share price down. As already noted, situations where unambiguously good or bad planetary patterns predominate occur most of the time. This is the main reason why many astrologers run into trouble. They extrapolate too far on the basis of thin or ambiguous data. A more prudent strategy is to refrain from making predictions at times of conflicting data and only take firm positions when the variables are more clearly defined.

For example, a situation may arise in which there are apparently offsetting influences of planetary transits from benefic Jupiter and malefic Saturn to key natal planets. In those instances, an astrological analysis is perhaps better off deferring judgement until other planetary influences come in to tip the balance. In this way, the best approach is for a selective application of astrological insights at critical turning points in the market. So while it may not be clear just how a stock will move over a period of days, weeks or even months, the astrologer will be able to identify critical time windows that have a much greater likelihood of ups or downs. Knowing these times of probable market outcomes can come in very handy to the trader, even if they only occur sporadically.

The basic astrological elements for forecasting the stock market are no different from standard astrology. The constant motion of the planets through the houses and zodiac signs supply the framework for an astrological model. The table below lists the relevant "variables" for our consideration.

Key Astrological Factors

Planet Sign
House Price Bias
Sun Leo
1st/10th Neutral
Moon
Cancer
4th Neutral
Mercury
Gemini/Virgo
3rd Neutral/Positive
Venus Taurus/Libra
2nd/7th Positive
Mars Aries/Scorpio 6th Negative
Jupiter
Sagittarius/Pisces
9th/11th Positive
Saturn
Capricorn/Aquarius
8th/12th Negative
Uranus
(Aquarius)
n/a Neutral
Neptune
(Pisces)
n/a Neutral
Pluto (Scorpio)
n/a Neutral
Rahu(N.Node)
n/a
n/a Neutral/Negative
Ketu(S.Node)
n/a
n/a Neutral/Negative

 

As we can see, the majority of planets here are listed as "neutral". That doesn't mean, however, that they have no effect on the markets. It just means that all things being equal, they do not have an intrinsic bias in regard to sentiment and prices. All planets, even the more clearly positive or negative ones, can exhibit a variety of price effects depending on the other planets and chart factors they are interacting with at any given time. Although all planets and houses possess certain natural inclinations, how they will eventually effect the market is more dependent on their temporary condition. For example, a positive planet like Venus if transiting over a malefic planet like Ketu in a malefic house like the 8th is more likely to coincide with a drop in the market. That's because the natural 'bullishness' of Venus has been corrupted, so to speak, by its temporary negative situation. Conversely, although Saturn is the planet most closely associated with pessimism and bear markets, if it forms a favourable alignment with positive aspects (e.g. 120 degrees) involving benefic planets, it often marks an upswing in prices. This is why it is crucial to take into account the whole chart rather than the motion of a single planet.
 
 
Boolean Analysis and the Financial Markets 


Many astrologers like to characterize their method of reading a horoscope as "holistic", in an effort to escape criticisms from mechanistically-oriented skeptics. I prefer to think of chart analysis in terms of Boolean logic, where multiple factors must be present for a particular situation to occur. For example, we cannot expect stocks to inevitably rise when benefic Jupiter conjoins the natal Sun of the chart we are working with. Such a favourable pattern may be thought of as a necessary, but not sufficient condition for price increases. There must also be an absence of negative factors hitting the key chart points. These would include few close aspects from malefic planets, no planets transiting malefic houses (6th, 8th, 12th) and so on. Given the large number of variables every chart contains, there will be several significant operating planetary contacts and influences at any given time. These must all be evaluated for their relative effects of prices according to the principles of Boolean analysis. If we are trying to assess if the conditions are in place for a bull market, for example, we could construct a table that more clearly reflects this logical process.

 

Essential Conditions for Bull and Bear Markets

Chart Factor

Favourable

(bullish)

Unfavourable

(bearish)

Comments
Dasha lords
Strong, associated with benefics; no link to natural or temporary malefics Weak, linked to houses 6,8,12 or malefic planets Benefics in soft aspect to dasha lord are best; Malefics in hard aspect to dasha lords are worst
Transits to dasha lords
Jupiter, Rahu or trine aspects from Outers Saturn, Ketu; hard aspects from Outers
Slow-moving planets are more influential because
Transits to non-dasha lords Ascendant/Moon/Sun tr. Jupiter and free of affliction by Saturn and Ketu A tight Saturn square/opp to Asc/Moon/Sun Less important than dasha lords, but still key, esp if stationing
Transits of Outers -- Uranus Neptune, Pluto Trines are the only potentially favourable aspect
Square and opposition aspects linger for months and years Conjunctions can go either way but will intensify other extant influences
Progressed configurations
Multi-planet patterns with at least one soft aspect and including Jupiter or Venus
Any square or opposition involving Saturn, Ketu or Outers
Secondaries exert longer influence; trines between Jupiter and one of the Outers is most bullish
Solar, Lunar Return charts
Conjunction or trine involving Jupiter or Venus and at least one other planet on an angle(Asc/MC) Square or opposition between Saturn, Ketu or Outers and any other planet on an angle (Asc/MC) Overlay with natal chart for both sets of angles

 

If most or all of the favourable conditions are in place, then a bull market is more probable. Where a more mixed situation obtains, the market will only deliver mixed results. In addition to the above factors, I use a variety of techniques including current transit patterns such as planetary ingresses, the phases of the Moon, and mundane aspects. All can be used as signals to help discern the prevailing market direction. Since none of these are reliable indicators on their own, I typically use up to 20 different measurements to compile a sort of moving astrological index that reflects changing investor sentiment. In addition, I make use of the first trade charts of key stocks, stock indices, and stock exchanges.

 

The Horoscope of the New York Stock Exchange

Perhaps the most important of these is the horoscope of the New York Stock Exchange which was founded May 17, 1792. There are several times out there for this chart, with different astrologers making a case for each. After much testing, I find the 10.30 am chart to be the most accurate. I have rectified to 10.34 am in order to make better use of the smaller chart varga divisions in Jyotish. This is quite a powerful chart, although one needs to stand outside of the Vedic tradition to fully appreciate it. Uranus, the planet of unbounded energy and sudden change, rises within one degree of the ascendant while Venus, the planet of money and luxury, culminates very near the Midheaven. Venus and Uranus together spell "fast or accelerated money" better than just about any other planetary combinations I can think of and therein perfectly describe the rapid movement of money on the trading floor. However appropriate that symbolism, it is more important that the chart adequately reflect major price movements over its long history. It does this well indeed regardless if one uses Western or Vedic techniques, as I do. This ability to see the dynamic of both bull and bear markets regardless of one's operating paradigm is a sign of the robustness of this chart.

To see how this chart works in practice, let's look at how we might have made sense of the planetary influences that were operating at the time of the October 1987 stock market crash. The NYSE chart was running Jupiter-Mercury dasha. Although both of these planets are natural benefics and therefore biased towards price rises, a planet's temporary condition in the chart at hand is a more important determinant of its promise. Jupiter's dasha lasts 16 years to it is only a background influence. More significant is Mercury. Although fairly well-placed in the 11th house of gains in Taurus, it rules the 12th of loss and the neutral 3rd and is also closely combusted. So far, this is a fairly mediocre Mercury. However, what tips the scales towards the negative is that it forms a tight square with Pluto. Hard aspects with any outer planet are never good, and this creates a natal tendency in Mercury that will tend to manifest in lower prices during its dasha periods, as we will see in a separate discussion below.

Transitwise, Jupiter opposes its natal position and is conjunct the Moon. This will tend to be a positive influence. Other potentially favourable longer term influences include Uranus which trines the Moon. However, there are a greater number of negative transits here. Neptune precisely squares the nodes, while Saturn is applying to square Mars in the 2nd house of wealth. Perhaps more bearish is that Ketu conjoins natal Rahu and thereby aspects 2nd lord Sun, which is natally conjoined with Mercury. The most bearish transit influence is Pluto (powerful destruction) which sits on the IC and opposes Venus (money). This is a very clearly negative aspect. Moreover, tertiary progressed Mars was tightly squaring the very malefic conjunction of Ketu and Neptune, while P3 Mercury (trading) conjoined P3 Saturn (loss).

On the basis of just these small handful of factors, it was clear that the Fall of 1987 would be a bearish time for the market, with the high probability of a significant sell-off.



The Vulnerability of Mercury Periods

One of the interesting features of the NYSE horoscope is the afflicted nature of Mercury. This is ironic in a way since Mercury is the planet of trading. Nonetheless, one compelling way to judge the effects of this troubled Mercury is to assess its effect on market performance over the years. Since the antardasha (aka subperiod, or bhukti) period is shorter, we can find several instances over the past 100 years or so and thereby correlate stock prices during the time it was subperiod lord.
Dasha Period
Dates in Effect
Dow Jones- Begin
Dow Jones- End
Net Effect

Simple annual rate of return

Mercury 5/23/1896-5/24/1913
41*
54
+32% +1.9%
Ketu-Mercury 5/28/19 - 5/24/20
109
92
-16% -16%
Venus-Mercury 5/24/36 - 3/25/39
155
140
-10% -3.4%
Sun-Mercury 3/12/44 - 1/16/45 140 154
+10% +12%
Moon-Mercury 3/24/52 - 8/23/53
268
272
+1% +1%
Mars-Mercury 11/23/59 - 11/19/60
675
610
-10% -10%
Rahu-Mercury 5/9/71 - 11/25/73
932
854
-8.4% -3.3%
Jupiter-Mercury 1/25/86 - 5/2/88
1537
2043
33% +14.3%
Saturn-Mercury 5/30/00 - 2/7/03
10,527
7864
-25% -9.3%
Mercury 5/23/2016-5/24/2033
? ?
? ?
Average (inc 19th century data)
+0.2%
Average (ex 19th century data)
-1.7%

*At its inception on May 26, 1896, the Dow was computed differently and was comprised of only 12 companies. This makes its early data less reliable for historical comparisons.

We can see that Mercury dashas do not generally correlate with higher prices and fall well below the +6%/year historical norm for stocks. The best performing period occurred during Jupiter-Mercury but even there, Mercury revealed its bearish tendencies since it marked the biggest crash in history. The overall positive price effect from 1985-1988 was largely the result of Jupiter's overriding influence. It is perhaps no coincidence that the greatest bull market in history occurred during the Jupiter dasha from 1981 to 1997. The only other strongly positive period occurred during the Sun dasha. Here we can see the combined effect of two 11th house planets (gains!) fending off whatever bearish influences they encountered. Looking ahead to Mercury's next major dasha period which begins in 2016, it's hard to be optimistic about the stock market's performance.

 



 

Related articles of interest:

 


Shanghai Stock Exchange Meltdown -- 2008

London FTSE Bear Market -- 2008

Mumbai's Magnificent Monday -- 2009




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