Charles Payne

"Fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me." Because that's the message from the latest Gallup poll that shows investor confidence in the stock market has not rebounded to the same degree as the stock market - not even close.

In fact, considering 54% of non-retirees were still relying on retirement savings accounts (401Ks) in 2008, , it is somewhat amazing that only 48% feel that way today, even as the Dow has rallied 150% from its March 2009 bottom.

Although the Dow has drifted from an all-time high, confidence has not climbed back to the level of 54% of non-retirees using the stock market as their primary source of economic preparation for their golden years. The most recent crash seems to have been the last straw; there has been a mini-crash in some of the high flyer stock names.

This happens to be a tough time for the market, which adjusted for inflation, is almost unchanged from its high of January 2000 (Dow at 16,084 in 2014 = 11,722 in 2000).The fact is investor trepidation has actually played a major role in the market's lackluster performance since the tech crash, as they were easily shaken out of positions, and have been willing to chase performance.

That old adage about buying low and selling high, rivals wash behind your ears for commonsense things we never really do.

Pushing Around the Little Guy with the Help of the Little Guy

Of course perched over all this action, are those Pharaohs of Wall Street that play the public like marionette puppets, and play the market like a fiddle. They get to move the needle through deep pockets, and even deeper messaging. Yesterday, David Einhorn's assessment that Athena Health (ATHN) was a bubble stock sent shares crashing lower. Why would holders of that stock sell unless there was little conviction about the stock to begin with? Of course there comes a point when the pain is so terrible, people simply bite the bullet.

Knowing they have the clout to start this type scenario has resulted in a landslide in social media stocks, where companies that beat estimates are crushed, and companies that offer higher guidance are crushed as well. Companies that seem to deliver everything, which usually makes Wall Street happy, watch their shares get sacked. (We have a few of these ideas open, and it is a challenge to ask people to hold, even though in the past, similar situations have ended with stocks recovering.)

Pharaohs & Riches


Charles Payne

Charles V. Payne is a regular contributor to the Fox Business and Fox News Networks. He is also the Chief Executive Officer and Principle Analyst of Wall Street Strategies, Inc. (WSSI), founded in 1991 which provides subscription analytical services to both individual and institutional investors.