Biden plan to hike capital gains tax surprises markets

(22 April 2021)  Stocks fell suddenly this afternoon on reports that President Biden intends to nearly double the capital gains tax for wealthy investors.  While Biden has made no secret of his intention to increase taxes on the rich, the news caught the market off-guard.   Stocks had been fairly choppy already this week as renewed virus concerns has damaged the economic outlook in several countries. 

As I noted in last week's post, stocks are increasingly vulnerable to declines in the weeks ahead as the bullish influence of Jupiter may be starting to weaken.  US stocks have been quite buoyant thus far in April as Jupiter approached its alignment with Pluto.  While this 30-day degree alignment is not a traditional full-strength Vedic aspect, it nonetheless has coincided with some optimism.  After its exact alignment on Tuesday, April 20, however, its positive energy may begin to diminish. 

In addition, we can see that the Jupiter-Pluto alignment also aligned exactly with the Jupiter-Pluto square in the horoscope of the NYSE.   Now that transiting Jupiter (3 Aquarius) is separating from its conjunction with natal Pluto (2 Aquarius) and its 120-degree aspect with natal Jupiter (2 Libra), further gains in US markets seem less likely. 

The other side of the equation is that bearish Saturn may be getting more powerful.   Stocks tend to fall when Saturn forms alignments with other planets, and slower-moving planets tend to do more damage than fasting-moving inner planets.  This is very much the case here as slow-moving Rahu (North Lunar Node) is aspecting Saturn through its 120-degree aspect.  However, we should note that Rahu and Saturn have been in close alignment for several weeks already while stocks have generally risen.  The absence of any major decline may be at least partially explained by the simultaneous presence of the bullish Jupiter-Pluto alignment. 

Also, slow-moving alignments involving malefic planets sometimes need a faster-moving third planet to act as a trigger.  In this respect, the current position of Mars (5 Gemini) is cause for concern.  Not only will Mars form an exact alignment with Rahu (17 Taurus) and Saturn (18 Capricorn) in May, but also because Mars is now casting its most malefic 8th house aspect upon Saturn (i.e. Capricorn is 8 signs/houses away from Gemini).   According to Vedic principles, Mars casts three full strength aspects: the square, the opposition and the 8th house (210 degree) aspect.   While all three aspects have a bearish bias, the 8th house aspect is said to have slightly more negative effects than the other two.   

Therefore, the next several weeks will see Saturn suffer a double affliction from malefics Rahu and Mars.  One saving grace may be that the Mars-Rahu-Saturn alignment does not directly impact any obvious point in the natal chart of the NYSE.  Nonetheless, the transit alignment alone may be sufficient to increase the probability of some downside in the markets.  Next week could well see a continuation of this week's choppiness, albeit with rising downside risk.

For more details, check out my weekly subscriber newsletter which is published every Saturday afternoon (EST).   I outline the key technical and planetary influences for US and Indian stocks for the short and medium term, as well as currencies, gold and oil.

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