Stocks Surge, Iran Prepares for War

  • Financial and industrial stocks also recorded strong gains, their best month since April 2009.
  • The main factor driving the rise in the US stock market in recent weeks has been optimism about the COVID-19 vaccine.
  • The U.S. State Department announced in three Twitter posts that the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) had "recruited foreign fighters."

The Dow and the Standard & Poor’s 500 index are expected to record their largest percentage gains in November since 1928. Data from the Dow Jones Market Data Group show that the two indexes rose by 12.86% and 11.27%, respectively. The Nasdaq Composite Index is expected to rise 11.86%, the best November since 2001.

Wall Street

As of Friday, the energy sector has risen 33.7%, with West Texas Intermediate crude oil at $45 a barrel. Energy stocks are catching a record monthly rise.

Adam Kobeissi, founder and editor in chief of The Kobeissi Letter, writes:

“While we do believe that many bearish headwinds persist in this market, we no longer view short-term price action with a bearish context due to the concept of ‘market euphoria.’” He added, “the S&P 500 has continuously driven to psychological targets, such as 3600 and a new all-time high, which can easily drive the index to 3700+.”

Financial and industrial stocks also recorded strong gains, their best month since April 2009. At the same time, as consumers buy paper towels, disinfectant wipes, and toilet paper in large quantities, prices of basic consumer goods are at their highest level since October 2000.

“The 7-day average of percentage of positive cases in the United States also dipped below 10.0% last week, to close at 9.4%. If this can continue to drop, specifically below 8.0%, then equities will continue to look past the short term headwinds of the pandemic,” says Kobeissi. He added:

“FAANG (Facebook FB, +0.80%, Apple AAPL, +0.48%, Amazon.com AMZN, +0.32%, Netflix NFLX, +1.31% and Alphabet’s Google GOOGL, +1.29% ), in particular, have the potential to recover and lead the next leg higher as hospitality stocks have taken the lead for this initial move to all-time highs.”

John Lonski, chief market economist at Moody’s Analytics, told Fox Business Network that the main factor driving the rise in the US stock market in recent weeks has been optimism about the COVID-19 vaccine.

Langski said, “this recession is all about COVID-19. If you can develop a COVID-19 vaccine and spread it quickly enough, there will be a V-shaped recovery. Real economic growth in 2021. The rate may reach 4.5% or even higher.”

IRGC Recruits Fighters for War in the Region

The Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) (‘Army of Guardians of the Islamic Revolution’ or Sepâh for short) is a branch of Iran’s Armed Forces, founded after the Iranian Revolution on 22 April 1979 by order of Ayatollah Khomeini. The Revolutionary Guards state that their role in protecting the Islamic system is preventing foreign interference as well as coups by the military or “deviant movements.”

The U.S. State Department announced in three Twitter posts that the Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC) had “recruited foreign fighters.”

It refers to the Fatimid army in Afghanistan, as well as Zainab in Syria. The United States has imposed sanctions on both groups.

These posts are published in Persian and deal with the activities of the Revolutionary Guards outside the borders of Iran. The issue is the formation of two Fatimid and Zeinabiun corps by the Revolutionary Guards.

“The Revolutionary Guards recruits foreign fighters to increase their influence abroad,” the State Department said in a statement.

“IRGC recruited Afghan Shiite militias for Iran’s Fatimion Brigade and Pakistani Shiite militias for Zainabiyoun Brigade for fighting in the region, particularly in Syria.”

The US State Department has announced in subsequent posts that it has imposed sanctions on both groups in 2019 for terrorist activities. State quoted the West Point Counter-Terrorism Center as saying that the number of Fatimid soldiers was estimated at between 10,000 and 12,000.

In a second post on Twitter, the US State Department quoted a Fatimid official as saying that “more than 2,000 militants were killed in Syria in 2018.”

In the third post, the use of child soldiers in the Fatimid army by the Revolutionary Guards is mentioned. Human Rights Watch has documented and condemned the use of child soldiers in the Fatimid activities by Iran.

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Joyce Davis

My history goes back to 2002 and I  worked as a reporter, interviewer, news editor, copy editor, managing editor, newsletter founder, almanac profiler, and news radio broadcaster.

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