The short and sweet on the markets at the moment: It could be worse, way worse.
The flip side of that coin: It could be about to get much worse in the very short-term if investors begin taking cues from plunging emerging market stocks and bitcoin prices.
The MSCI Emerging Market Index dropped for a seventh day, extending its decline since a peak in January to more than 20%. Yes, that means bear market. The index now trades on its lowest price-to-earnings ratio since early 2016, according to Bloomberg data.
Bitcoin prices tanked as much as 9.8% on Thursday following news Goldman Sachs (GS) - Get Report won't be setting up a crypto trading desk (of course it wasn't going to do this, let's get real). Over the past week, bitcoin prices have dropped from $6,800 to roughly $6,300. Some experts are calling for $5,000 in the not-too-distant future.
At that point, the S&P 500 (^GSPC) could be 5% lower from its highs.
The good news is that Sheryl Sandberg sounded engaged with Facebook's operations during her testimony in front of lawmakers Wednesday. The market didn't like what she had to say, neither did politicians, but with concerns on her standing inside Facebook swirling it's good to see that the experienced leader is working to address the social platform's many issues. The bad news here is that Sandberg's testimony sent Facebook shares down to a key technical point.
Closing at $167.18, the stock is about to test the July 30 lows of $166.56. If that important level doesn't hold, Facebook's stock could tank to the mid-March lows near $150.
"A break below the July lows will be particularly concerning because experience tells us that whenever a stock falls 20% or more over just 1-3 days, it usually involves some "forced selling" (margin calls, etc)," said Miller Tabak strategist Matt Maley. "These kinds of severe declines over just a few days usually leads the stock to get 'washed out.' This, in turn, usually signals a bottom for the stock that lasts for a long time (6 months or more). This is why we believe that the July lows ($170-$171) is a VERY important level for FB, and any 'meaningful' break below those July lows (a small break will not be enough) could/should lead to another significant leg lower in the stock."
With markets feeling like they just want to collapse, what better time to connect with some of the best Wall Street pros around? Tune in at 11a.m. Thursday to TheStreet's September "Trading Strategies" live show. One full hour of uninterrupted, money-making insights into the stock market. So grab a Starbucks (SBUX) - Get Report coffee with almond milk foam (which some 25-year old ordered in front of me today ... a true sign the world is nearing an end) and tune in.
BTW, in our latest "Tip of the Day" we take a quick glance at Starbucks -- apparently the coffee chain continues to struggle in the U.S.
Paul Brown, co-founder and CEO of Inspire Brands (owner Arby's and Buffalo Wild Wings), told me the company is hunting for acquisitions and didn't rule out an initial public offering. Further, expect to start seeing long-awaited changes in the menu and service at Buffalo Wild Wings this month.
Pernard Ricard's CEO Alexandre Ricard will be in studio with me Thursday. The company owns top alcohol names such as Absolut and Jameson. Interested to hear how growth is accelerating for the company in China alongside an economic slowdown.
Meanwhile, Sprouts Farmers Market (SFM) - Get Report CEO Amin Maredia sounded open to deal-making in a new interview with me. Considering the fierce competition in organics from Walmart (WMT) - Get Report and Amazon's (AMZN) - Get Report Whole Foods, Sprouts is hanging in there pretty well.