Don’t Be Fooled By the Debt Ceiling Fight

|May 25, 2023

We stepped on a snake yesterday.

The serpent coiled under our feet and sprang into action.

It’s that time of year on the farm. We’re making hay, cutting tall grass and digging up the soil. Critters are on the move.

This beast found a way into the farm’s wood shop – a building that gets much attention this time of year. We opened the door with a load of trim in our hands, flicked on the light and felt something wayward under our feet.

Just a piece of scrap, we figured, as we hurried to keep the wind from catching the door.

With the latch secured, we looked down to see just what it was that somebody had left in such a well-traveled spot.

We jumped as if a giant mouse trap had sprung us into the air.

The snake was as startled as we were – never a good sign. Its tan and brown skin was divided evenly into an eye-catching pattern… something easily remembered by prey.

Its tail, the skinny end of a 2-foot-long coil of muscle and forked tongue, vibrated in the air.

“An impostor!” we shouted as we shook our fist at something that electrified our millennia-old flight instinct with a jolt.

It was little more than a meandering corn snake doing his best imitation of a snake that’s actually worth fearing.

With his true identity outed, he noiselessly slithered away to wherever it was he was headed.

Our fiercely beating heart quickly calmed to its rest rate. Mrs. Manward wouldn’t be practicing her venom-extracting techniques after all.

She seemed disappointed.

And so we turn to the world of money and the vipers in Washington…

The Biggest Threat

“The nation’s capital – and the nearsighted vote counters who run it – remains the single biggest threat to an investor’s portfolio,” we told our family of Manward Letter subscribers earlier this week.

This debt ceiling debate is quickly reaching the point where stocks will suffer. If word of a compromise – or even a half-cocked temporary solution – doesn’t quell the debt debate soon, stocks will retreat.

After a month of gains in anticipation of lower interest rates, a swift downturn could happen very quickly.

It’d be like stepping on a snake – drowning our senses in a pool of adrenaline.

We reminded our loyal followers that there are two things we could do about it all…

We could sell all our stocks and hope to buy them back cheaper… a very dumb idea…

Or we could hold through the fiasco and use it to bolster our portfolio… a particularly smart – yet only fleetingly popular – idea.

No Venom

Indeed, if the United States government failed to pay any of its obligations, it’d be trouble. Imagine if hospitals didn’t get their Medicare payments… or if retirees didn’t get their Social Security checks… or if government workers didn’t get paid… or, dare we say it, if Zelensky didn’t get his latest cache of proxy bullets.

It’d be bad. But it would certainly be temporary.

Not paying its bills would effectively put the federal government out of business. Even the humblest and most honest of politicians (don’t laugh) would eventually raise his hand to vote for his own paycheck.

That’s why markets haven’t sold off. We’ve been here before. We recognize the colors on that serpent. We know its little round eyes tell the truth.

There’s no venom in those gums… just as there’s no backbone in its coiled-up body.

That snake’s rattling tail? It’s not real.

It’s just something he saw somebody else do to get out of a jam.

If this fake debate keeps growing, with more and more slithering around the corner, the fear will make many run. It’ll take guts (plus experience and knowledge) to reach down and shoo the pest away.

But those who do it will get a grand opportunity.

There’s no venom in this debate – only a bunch of snakes rattling their tails, hoping we’ll fall for the trick.


Stocks will get cheaper.

Buy them.

Andy Snyder
Andy Snyder

Andy Snyder is an American author, investor and serial entrepreneur. He cut his teeth at an esteemed financial firm with nearly $100 billion in assets under management. Andy and his ideas have been featured on Fox News, on countless radio stations, and in numerous print and online outlets. He’s been a keynote speaker and panelist at events all over the world, from four-star ballrooms to Capitol hearing rooms.