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Tuesday, 19 May 2009

With stocks making triple digit gains on Monday some investors are asking, "is the action the start of the next leg higher -- or is it a su...cker's rally?"

Hedge fund manager Andy Kessler isn't riding this bull. In fact he's taking it by the horns.

In last week's Wall Street Journal he laid out a case that seems rather compelling for the bears. We found his perspectives so intriguing we asked Kessler to join us as a guest on Fast Money.

He told us in no uncertain terms, this sure smells to me like a su....ckers rally largely because there aren't sustainable, fundamental reasons for the market's continued rise.

Kessler believes it all comes back to the banks. Although they’re up something like 30% over the last few months the gains were not based on strong profits but rather the notion that “financial Armageddon was off the table.”

“I don’t think the bank problems are solved,” he says on Fast Money. “What were called toxic assets only two months ago are now called legacy assets. (And yet) the banking problems are not solved.”

And in the WSJ he adds, “you can't have a profitless recovery.

Essentially Kessler feels that government actions drove bank stocks, which in turn led the market higher. (In other words an artificial catalyst). As a result the move does not reflect fundamental hurdles still facing the market including:

- Subpart earnings
- Weak demand for Treasurys
- Big changes in health care

And that's just the beginning of Kessler's rather long long list.

Perhaps another way of saying it is this: the fundamentals don’t point to the same kind of rosy outlook as the recent moves in stocks suggest.

And “until these issues are resolved, I don't see the stock market going much higher,” Kessler says.

What’s the bottom line? “I think the whole (rally) is engineered to solve the bank problems. I don’t have a problem with that but I don’t want to be the *censored* buying into the rally.”

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