All Nouriel, All the Time

Nouriel Roubini, the Turkish-born economist and New York University professor that the press has named “Dr. Doom,” is grabbing headlines this morning with his downbeat assessment of global economic prospects.

I blogged about Roubini after The New York Times Sunday Magazine did a profile on him. You can see his chart here, courtesy of Astrodienst. He was born March 29, 1958 in Istanbul, time unknown.

You can see that the transiting Neptune/Mercury/Mars stellium in Aquarius (to name just a few planets) is conjuncting Roubini’s Venus in Aquarius, which natally is with Chiron.

We’re Not in Kansas Anymore, Toto

It’s Thursday, Oct. 2, the day of the big debate between Vice-Presidential candidates Joe Biden and Sarah Palin. The senator has no doubt had a fresh haircut and a manicure (hair and hands are important for all politicians, male or female) and is being warned by his handlers not to be too tough on the Alaska governor, lest people feel sorry for her.

Palin’s putting the finishing touches on her “updo,” which some people say looks like it came straight out of AMC’s Madmen. However, I think it looks like a white girl’s ode to the Supremes. We’re still talking early Sixties, though.

The most important choice for Palin tonight, though, is color: Nancy Reagan red or Aquarian cobalt blue? From my observation, Sarah’s a “winter,” which means bright colors are good for her.

(Note to Sarah: No one expects you to know everything, but it’s good to be specific when asked what papers you read and what court cases you disagree with.)

While our future leaders are pondering the nuances of style and subtleties of presentation, I’ve been studying at such economic arcana as LIBOR (London Interbank Offered Rate) and the “TED” spread, the difference between the three-month Treasury-bill interest rate and three-month LIBOR.

While most Americans are focusing on the Dow Jones industrial average, which closed down 348.22, to 10,482.85 today, despite the Senate’s passage of the mother of all bailouts, a crisis of confidence is looming in the markets where banks lend money to each other.

LIBOR reached a record high of 6.875% (that’s to borrow money overnight!) on Sept. 30 before backing off, prompting Dr. Doom — economist Nouriel Roubini — to speculate that we could be facing the “mother of all bank runs.” Now, saying something like that is akin to yelling fire in a crowded theater. But seriously, Astrology Mundo readers, keep a little cash lying around the house.

I have Moon in Cancer at the Midheaven, so I’m worried about you.

Nouriel Roubini: The New Dr. Doom

You know the way some people gush over movie stars and athletes? With a Sun/Mercury/Saturn in financially-minded Capricorn opposing a cyclical Cancer Moon, I get a little starry-eyed over economists.

Maybe the reason why practitioners of the so-called Dismal Science get my heart beating a little faster is because I secretly consider them to be fellow travelers. After all, both economists and astrologers spend their time poring over charts and making prognostications. This reminds me of one of my favorite quotes, from economist John Kenneth Galbraith: “The only function of economic forecasting is to make astrology look respectable.”

Earlier this year, I wrote an ode to the late economist Hyman Minsky and I’ve been known to blow virtual kisses at market maven Barry Ritholtz.

I’m out of town so I’m just catching up with this New York Times Sunday Magazine story on Nouriel Roubini, whom I quoted in my Minsky post. Don’t have time to read it right now? Here’s a key point:

Only a handful of 20th-century economists have even bothered to study financial panics. (The most notable example is probably the late economist Hyman Minksy, of whom Roubini is an avid reader.) “These are things most economists barely understand,” Roubini told me. “We’re in uncharted territory where standard economic theory isn’t helpful.”

The NYT has dubbed Roubini “Dr. Doom.” Want to know the last time the mainstream media nicknamed an economist Dr. Doom? Interestingly enough, it was when Saturn was last in Virgo, 29 years ago. In the late 1970s and early 1980s, Salomon Brothers chief economist Henry Kaufman had that moniker. Kaufman was a talking head who influenced markets during the tenure of Federal Reserve Board Chairman Paul Volcker. You can read about that period here.

I love the symbolism: Dr. Doom as a finance icon is having his Saturn return! By the way, the original Dr. Doom is still going strong at age 80. Henry Kaufman runs an eponymous consulting firm and gets a seat on the dais at Economic Club of New York functions in honor of his longevity.

Why is Roubini, the new Dr. Doom, getting so much ink right now? He is an Aries born Mar. 29, 1958, according to the Wiki. You can see Roubini’s chart with transits and progressions of Aug. 17, the day the NYT article was published, here courtesy of Astrodienst.

Interesting that Roubini’s progressed Sun and Moon are conjunct in late Taurus. This often signifies marriage or the beginning of a new creative partnership. The economist’s got the transiting North Node, which is traveling with Neptune and Chiron, on his Venus/natal Chiron in Aquarius right now. The Sun was a little past an opposition to his Venus on Aug. 17.

The transiting North Node, which is good for connections with the public, is bringing attention from the media, and increasing Roubini’s popularity, though the article mentions his perennial “outsider” status. I believe this reflects the conjunction of Chiron, the Wounded Healer, with Venus in his natal chart. The son of Iranian Jews who was raised in Turkey, Roubini is an immigrant. So is the original Dr. Doom, Henry Kaufman, whose family left Germany to escape Hitler after living through the hyperinflation of the 1920s.

Let’s hope the two Dr. Dooms, and the rest of us, don’t have to live through U.S. hyperinflation of the 2010s.