Since the turmoil in the markets that began in 2008, a growing number of traders have adopted astrological analysis to boost the results of their trading decisions. They realize that combining fundamental and technical analyses with Financial Astrology can improve the performance of their trading. The advantages of knowing in advance probable major price reversals for a stock through astrological methods are incalculable.1
Welcome to the wonderful world of Financial Astrology which, though based on straightforward principles, can be difficult to implement. In short, it is the use of cosmic cycles to predict how the flow and value of money is likely to increase or decrease – whether it’s a good or bad time to invest, start a business, or speculate on the value of currency or shares. Of course, there are different kinds of financial markets, or exchanges, whether commodities (raw materials) stocks and shares (equity in various companies), ‘money markets’ (basically, borrowing and lending) the foreign exchanges market (how one currency compares to another) plus the more complex futures markets, derivatives, hedge funds etc.
Even so, the basics of Financial Astrology are not difficult for the general astrologer. The two main criteria involved (one might say) are the individual birth charts of companies or financial projects themselves (a new business, or trade, for example). In the latter case, one would obtain the first trade data of that stock or currency and erect a chart for it, then (over time) check transits/progressions for expected price movements. Then there are the overall transits in the sky (that require special ‘financial’ interpretation). It’s important to remember, however, that the chart needs to be scrutinised in its entirety, and that (for a specific kind of event to occur) multiple chart factors must be concurrent. Plus, there is almost certainly room for a little traditional astrology when it comes to planetary rulerships for charts (the ‘ruling planet’ for the ascendant) as they seem to capture a particular theme and ‘condition’ of what’s happening at the time. One more pointer, cited in Louise McWhirter’s Astrology and Stock Market Forecasting (first published in 1938) is the use of the transits of the Moon’s North Nodes as ‘a basic trend of Business activity and volume.’ But we’re getting ahead of ourselves!
As for what planets in general signify in a financial astrology ‘chart’, it’s a case of contextualising, and seeing how the planet’s energy works within that new context – businesses, industries and stock markets (the index of share prices for those businesses) plus the individual economies of countries (based on their Gross Domestic Product, the decisions of Banks/interest rates etc) their relevant currencies and how they will compete with one another. Listed below is a general, simplified guide to how planets seem to affect current market movements, or what’s signified in a nation’s economy (after noting the aspects involved). In parentheses are the relevant industries to which each planetary energy belongs or ‘rules’.
Sun: Confidence, energy, often represents the business itself or its figurehead (Precious Metals speculation/stock market).
Moon’s North Node: Corresponds with the ‘Business Volume Curve’ (The Moon in general ‘rules’ retail, health care, household products, restaurants).
Mercury: Speed, movement and the principle of trading itself (telecommunications, the Media, publishing, travel and transport in general, footwear).
Venus: Small growth – traditionally the ‘minor benefic’ (clothing and fashion, the cosmetic industry, places of leisure/entertainment).
Mars: Energy, activity, speed, competition – traditionally the ‘minor malefic’ (sport, the military, weapons and armaments, steel).
Jupiter: Growth, expansion, high confidence (but also over-reaching ) success and speculation – traditionally the ‘Greater Benefic’ (‘Bull Markets’, banking, brokering, gambling institutions legal issues/law courts).
Saturn: Stability, limits, downturns, pressure, low confidence, impediments, contraction – traditionally the ‘Greater Malefic’ (‘Bear Markets’, agriculture, construction, building and real estate).
Uranus: Change and volatility (the WorldWideWeb, inventions, digital technology, computing and innovation, the aeronautics industry; exploration/discovery, electricity, science and biotechnology).
Neptune: Uncertainty, often a negative for markets: unrealistic expectation (the advertising industry, fashion/glamour, shipping and maritime matters, tobacco/ alcohol, minerals, oil, medicine).
Pluto: Great power and its use, manipulation, drastic change – can represent Plutocracies, big business and monopolies (stocks and bonds, mining, nuclear industry, international crime and the Underworld).
The Jupiter-Saturn Cycle in Financial Astrology
Let us begin with the astrologer’s bête noir, Saturn, which pertains to all matters earthly and material, thus to financial security issues, whether domestic economies or the financial markets. As we can see from the above table it also signifies downturns and sluggishness, and in some cases a total fall out. For example, there was an opposition between Saturn and Uranus in February 2009, at a time when the so called Great Recession was hitting a new crisis point – economic hardship was starting to cause political instability due to social unrest. As Wikipedia duly reported:
‘Business Week stated in March 2009 that global political instability is rising fast because of the global financial crisis and is creating new challenges that need managing …economic weakness could lead to political instability in many developing nations. Even some developed countries are seeing political instability …’
But let us start earlier – to take two well known examples there is Black Monday (October 19, 1987, when world stock markets crashed) and sixty years before that, “Black Tuesday”, (October 29, 1929, when panic selling reached its peak.) The latter is the infamous Wall Street Crash and if we look at transits to the US chart (2nd July 1776, 16:00, Philadelphia) we see transiting Mars (a ‘trigger’ planet) squaring the moon-Pluto conjunction in the second house – the nation’s finances. The square makes things ‘overheat’ and by the 29th – the official date of the crash – shares were grossly overvalued and the whole thing exploded. It is highly apt that only seven days later, transiting Saturn entered into America’s second house of personal resources/wealth, presaging the long, drawn-out, financial depression of the 1930’s.
The chart for the actual day of the Crash (like that of Black Monday) shows Saturn (surprise!) to within 2 degrees of the MC. This is very apt symbolism in a Finance chart – the archetypal force for limitation, suppression and resistance coming into contact with the area of the chart symbolising the culmination of one’s efforts, the final reaping of what one has sown. The current economic cycle had come to the end of the road, therefore. (Later, we’ll notice more than once, how significant aspects occur involving the Midheaven in Financial Astrology.)
In any assessment of overall economic performance, Financial Astrologers routinely look at Saturn paired with Jupiter. Both planets tend to have a special place here with the Jupiter-Saturn synod or cycle, and a chart set up for the so called Grand Conjunction will help to demonstrate the course that stock markets, for example, will follow for the subsequent 20 years. The current Jupiter-Saturn cycle began with the last Grand Conjunction of May 2000. The NASDAQ stock market (a US stock exchange and the second-largest exchange in the world by market capitalisation) peaked in March of that year, reflecting the so called DotCom Bubble when new computer technology companies were starting up. An economic bubble (or speculative bubble) is when trade in an asset occurs at an overinflated price (i.e. not reflecting its intrinsic value) and the share prices are often based on implausible expectations about the future. (For example, investors in a new company technology will lose money when the business fails to generate expected profits.)
On March 10th, 2000 (at the time of the close of the markets in the US) a chart set for New York, 16.00, significantly shows Jupiter making an almost exact square to Neptune. This is a sign of overinflated and unrealistic confidence – a kind of market self-delusion.
Following this peak, as the Bubble collapsed, the NASDAQ index hit a new low in late 2002. A chart for the relevant date, October 9th, reflects this nicely, with Saturn making an exact square to swift Mercury and another to energetic Mars (within 3 degrees). I can think of no better indicator of something being slowed down, of the brakes being applied! Saturn is also associated with so called ‘Bear’ markets (one that is in decline) as opposed to the rising ‘Bull’ market. These two processes perfectly describe the effects of Saturn and Jupiter, respectively, and the Saturn effect was reflected in the second half of the Jupiter-Saturn cycle beginning in May 2010 with the opposition in Pisces-Virgo.
The austerity measures put in place then were a sure sign that Saturn had gained the upper hand and as Investopedia noted about such difficulties: ‘Patterns in economic data are showing signs of weakness, and the troubles persisting in Europe or the bubble bursting in China may be the trigger that sends the economy over the edge. Unlike in 2008, when central banks were able to lower interest rates and expand their balance sheets, central banks now have much less elbow room to enact loose monetary policy to prevent a recession from happening.’ (Very Saturnian!)
The 2008 Crash and Financial Astrology
The 2007-8 Financial Crisis was in large part caused by ‘subprime’ loans whose borrowers had defaulted, simply because their credit history was poor. This was essentially the fault of the lenders, i.e. the banks, though other regulators mishandled it too. If you lend a lot of money to a lot of people who can’t afford to repay it, you’re inviting trouble. Hence there was a lot of ‘toxic debt’ around. According to the Guardian phase one of the Global Financial Crisis started,
‘on 9 August 2007 [which] began with the seizure in the banking system precipitated by BNP Paribas announcing that it was ceasing activity in three hedge funds that specialised in US mortgage debt. This was the moment it became clear that there were tens of trillions of dollars worth of dodgy derivatives swilling round which were worth a lot less than the bankers had previously imagined.’2
BNP Paribas is a French international banking group with its headquarters in Paris, hence I have set the chart for the Birth of the Global Financial Crisis for this location. Interestingly, the illuminating reality- check on the part of BNP Paribas (when it took decisive action) shows up with Saturn-Venus (a dampening effect) opposite Neptune, and Uranus in close conjunction to the IC, with an exact trine between Saturn and Pluto. (The whole thing screams ‘get real’!) On a financial chart, this latter aspect suggests powerful interests getting the wheels turning (trines indicate momentum), as BNP Paribas duly did. The Uranus opposition to the MC symbolises an awakening of sorts, indeed, a shock – which is how the group must have felt about those ‘dodgy derivatives’ . Hence the ‘let’s get real’ effect of Saturn-Venus. What we have seen since in the Global Financial Crisis (especially as it affects governments) is aptly symbolised by Pluto’s transit through Capricorn, which commenced between February and May 2008 (before retrograding) and then settled for good by late November. Then, of course, there was the Lehman Brothers scandal:
‘It began on Sunday evening [March 9th, 2008] with an unbelievable personal fall from grace and ended with the most spectacular American banking collapse seen in decades. Late that night, Eliot Spitzer, New York governor and the scourge of Wall Street banks … admitted he had been caught on a wire tap confirming plans to a young woman to join him in a private room at the so-called Emperors’ Club where New York’s wealthy elite bed prostitutes. As the once proud defender of the people against the excesses of capitalism sank into the quicksand, financial storm clouds swiftly gathered overhead.’3
A Mars-Pluto opposition had occurred on March 6th (only one degree from being exact on the 9th) and the symbolism is almost perfect: both a financial crisis and a sexual scandal caused by people in high places! The Guardian continues: ‘The following day, Blackstone Group, manager of the world’s biggest buyout fund, revealed it had suffered a 90 per cent profit drop during its fourth quarter … On Tuesday, there was blind panic on Wall Street …’4 The situation merely escalated from there – even though Pluto had retrograded into Sagittarius from May until November, the genie was out of the bottle. The Financial services firm Lehman Brothers famously filed for bankruptcy on 15th of September, but their collapse virtually brought down the entire world’s financial system.
Just prior to this, according to Wikipedia : ‘The [declining] bear market was confirmed in June 2008 when the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) had fallen 20% from its October 11, 2007 high’ (The Dow Jones, originally created in 1885, is a stock market index showing the trades of 30 publicly owned US companies in a standard trading session.)
The ‘high’ in a (declining) Bear Market is simply the point above which it never rises. Obviously, this is Saturnian limitation, too – and this planet is significant in the chart set for 11th Oct 2007 (16:00, New York) which has Saturn conjunct Venus, but square to the MC. Interestingly, Jupiter squares Uranus, too – an indication of some kind of confidence and growth.
The nadir in this cycle, the Bear market low (which came two years later) occurs on March 9th 2009, as the market value was severely decreased. We expect the limitations of Saturn to be in force, and lo and behold, he is in opposition to both the sun and Uranus – vigour and confidence is deflated and depressed, and any potential change is stymied. Here is the chart:
I hope you’ve found this brief introduction both interesting and useful. To be a good Financial Astrologer you need to have some idea as to how both disciplines really work, how to spot astrological trends, and how markets operate. More than one volume would be required to explain everything, and you could do worse than checking out the work of Christeen Skinner, Alphee Lavoie and Henry Weingarten.
1. Timing Solutions For Swing Traders – Successful Trading using Technical Analysis and Financial Astrology, Robert T.H. Lee/ Peter A. Tryde, John Wiley & Sons, 2012
3. The ramifications of the Banking Collapse of 2008 will be felt for years if not decades to come. http://www.theguardian.com/business/2008/dec/28/markets-credit-crunch-banking-20084