The stock market is channeling the possibility
of a severe credit collapse.
It's the reason why equity prices from Seoul to Paris
were rocked this week — even though there is no
housing recession in those markets,
or in much of the world outside the United States.
It's why the Blackstone Group, a private equity firm
whose lifeblood is credit, has lost more than 1/5
of its value since going public just one month ago.
It's why KKR, which was planning a much more
conservative public offering (it wasn't solely designed
as a cash-out for the partners), may have to scrap its IPO.
And it's why TheStreet.com published
the unthinkable story under this headline Friday:
"Wall Street Bonuses in Peril."
OK, got your attention now? Yes, there are very
serious concerns that this may indeed be
"the big one."
What's most disturbing is that the brightest minds
on the street, veterans of other financial panics
and credit seizures, readily admit it's virtually
impossible to see the forest for the trees.
. . . in this crazy market."