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All in all I'm quite satisfied with the results from my 1997 predictions. Of especially timely interest throughout much of 1998 may be my forecast that the August 1, 1997 Saturn station "points to a downturn in the financial markets. Since the Ringed Planet remains within a degree of its August 1 station from June 27 through September 5, the exact timing for an equities crunch is hard to discern. But it's strongest between about July 15 (when Venus opposes Jupiter) and August 17 (the day of the Mercury station) - and particularly within a few days either side of August 1, the actual day of the station. As I write this the major US equity markets are still riding high. Unless I'm very wrong, that's about to end."

This was originally published to the Web with my July forecast on June 26, 1997 - at a time when major Wall Street gurus were still unmitigated bulls. (That July forecast was removed to conserve server space months ago; however it is repeated in the August forecast, which was published on July 31, 1997 and is still online by request.) But I had notified the media and my clients back in December 1996 that 1997 would feature "a significant correction in the stock market in late July or early August . . . and again in December." So I stuck my neck out more than six months in advance on that one.

History proved that forecast to be remarkably prescient. The Dow reached an historic high of 8259 on August 6, at which point a correction set in exactly as predicted. The closely watched average fell 640 points that month, losing 8% of its value by the time August ended. (The Dow recorded its worst weekly loss ever - 336 points - in mid-August.) Other major equity markets around the world were similarly battered, and more than a few of them suffered even bigger hits.

On a more upbeat note, I had predicted that 1997 would be "a banner year for high-tech stocks, including communications, computers, electronics and biotechnology." Except for the corrections I predicted, that market sector did very well for the year over-all.

My geophysical 'shock windows' delivered as promised too. I had predicted severe storms and moderate-to-severe seismic activity (including volcanic eruptions and Richter 5 or greater quakes) would cluster within plus or minus three days of the February 7, March 9, March 24, August 18, September 1 and September 16 SuperMoons and eclipses.

As promised, the February 7 SuperMoon delivered its usual quota of seismic activity and severe storms between the 4th and the 10th. One of the "more significant snows of the winter" is what Kansas Highway Patrol spokesman John Eichkorn called the storm that struck there on the 6th, shutting down schools and business and taking three lives in the process. By the 8th heavy snow was falling from the Plains eastward from New Jersey south to Virginia, while thunderstorms stalked the Gulf states. On the seismic front, there was a hefty crop of 15 Richter 5 or greater quakes during this period, including a 6.9 tremor that struck Iran on the 4th.

March 6-12, as predicted, produced the upsurge in "severe storms, flooding and seismic activity" so typical of the SuperMoon eclipse effect. A total of fifteen Richter 5 or greater quakes were recorded by the USGS during this period, including a Richter 6.7 in the Philippines on March 11. And of course there were the devastating Ohio River floods in the US, where damage estimates were in the half-billion dollar range. Meanwhile Cyclone Justin was pounding the northeast Australian coast on the 10th, with such ferocity that joint US-Australian military maneuvers - the biggest since World War II - had to be drastically curtailed in the interests of safety.

The March 24 (Universal Time) lunar eclipse, in effect from the 21st through the 27th, came through exactly as predicted. The biggest story on the weather front during this interval was Cyclone Justin, still wreaking havoc in the waters around Australia some two weeks after its first onslaught. (I had picked Australia as one of the danger zones for this alignment.) Justin's casualties included the crew of the yacht Queen Charlotte, the object of an exhaustive but futile search effort in the Coral Sea on the weekend of the 21st. Searchers battled 20 foot waves and 50 knot winds, but located only wreckage from the Queen Charlotte. On the seismic front, the USGS recorded a total of 17 Richter 5 or greater quakes during this period. The strongest of these was the Richter 6.4 tremor in the Aleutians on the 26th, but the 5.9 which struck the Japanese island of Kyushu that same day wasn't far behind.

Typhoon Winnie - "one of the deadliest typhoons to batter China in a decade" according to the Reuters wire - slammed into China on August 18, destroying 100,000 homes with an onslaught of flooding and high winds. Reports claim more than 140 people were killed in the storm, with thousands more injured. Off the straits in Taiwan another 37 people died in the storm's fury, while in the Philippines the death toll came to 16, with 60,000 people homeless due to floods. (I had picked coastal southeast Asia and southward as one of the danger zones for this alignment.)

The September 1 solar eclipse window ("August 29 to September 4") saw eleven Richter 5+ quakes during the predicted interval - including a 6.7 off the coast of New Guinea on August 29. While measuring just under 5 on the Richter scale, a series of three quakes struck southern Iran August 31-September 1, injuring more than 60 people. On the storm front, more than 200 people were killed by monsoon floods in Pakistan the week of September 4.

The September 16 SuperMoon eclipse came through in a big way from day one. It started with Hurricane Linda, called the most powerful Pacific hurricane in history, flooding out the west coast of Mexico on the 13th. (Southern Mexico was one of the at-risk areas singled out in my forecast.) The resort ports of San Carlos, Cabo San Lucas, Mazatlan, La Paz and Puerto Vallarta were closed due to an 8-foot storm surge from the 175-210 mph winds of the hurricane. Meanwhile in the plains states that same day, a low pressure system caused storms that did a million dollars worth of damage in Dodge City, Kansas (scores of people were flooded out of their homes). And across the Pacific, Typhoon Oliwa was packing 100+ mph winds and bearing down on Japan.

Other predictions made in my 1997 overview - published to clients and the media in December '96 - included "Religious and ideological extremists wreak havoc in January." Hardly a day went by that month without some new atrocity making headlines. It started on the 1st, when an Israeli soldier opened fire on a crowded marketplace in Hebron. That same day in the US, letter bombs began arriving in Washington, DC and Leavenworth, Kansas; and an abortion clinic in Tulsa, OK was bombed. On Saturday, January 4, two bombs exploded in the Indian capital of New Delhi: one person was killed and a dozen more injured. The following day, terrorists set off three bombs in Rustenburg, South Africa. On Monday the 6th IRA guerrillas in Belfast fired a self-propelled grenade at Northern Ireland's Courts of Justice building there. Later that same day in Belgrade, a bomb went off at the headquarters of the Yugoslav United Left Party. Tuesday the 7th continued the pattern, as a car bomb exploded in downtown Algiers, killing a half-dozen people and injuring a score more; that same day, an IRA bomb attack narrowly missed killing a police patrol in Belfast, and a Roman Catholic Church in Bosnia was hit by a bomb. More letter bomb incidents cropped up starting on Monday the 13th, at the London office of the Arab newspaper Al-Hayat. That same day, three letter bombs were discovered at UN headquarters in New York; a fourth was discovered early on the morning of the 14th. Also on the 14th, in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, a source close to Al-Hayat said letter bombs were received at the paper's offices there on the 4th and the 11th . . . fortunately, they were discovered before they could go off. On Thursday the 16th, two bombs exploded at an abortion clinic in suburban Atlanta, injuring six people. Some two dozen people were killed and more than a hundred injured by a car bomb in Algiers on Sunday, January 19. A double bombing rocked a Tulsa abortion clinic the very same day - the same clinic which had been bombed just over two weeks before. Monday the 20th brought more bombings, one an IRA hit on a Belfast police station and the other a terror attack on a school in Algiers. Back in Algiers on the 21st there were a pair of terrorist bombings. The first, a car bomb, killed a half-dozen people and wounded several dozen. The second, a huge explosion at the Ryad el Feth Trade Center, was heard throughout the city of Algiers. On Wednesday the 22nd - the 24th anniversary of the Roe vs. Wade decision legalizing abortion - there was another explosion at an abortion clinic in downtown Washington, DC. At about the same time, some "suspicious devices" were found at the nearby Mayflower Hotel, where first lady Hillary Rodham Clinton and Vice President Al Gore were scheduled to speak to a pro-choice luncheon. In Algiers on the 23rd, 15 people were massacred by Muslim fundamentalists, and a political assassination took place in a suburb of Algiers that same night. IRA terrorists were at it again near Belfast on the 26th, when a bomb blew up a British soldier's car in the town of Ballynahinch. Three Israeli soldiers in Lebanon were not so lucky on the 30th: they were killed by Hizbollah bombers while on a midnight patrol. And local police called an explosion at a restaurant in Bogota, Colombia on the 29th a terrorist bombing. Local radio reports claimed four dead and up to 40 injured in the blast. Back in Algeria on the same day, Muslim terrorists killed eight people, including a 13 month-old baby who was strangled to death. The following day a retired general was assassinated by Muslim terrorists in the western Algerian city of Oran. Terror bombs were cropping up in California as January drew to a close. One went off at the Solano County courthouse on Thursday the 30th. Another was discovered and detonated by police in San Diego. Meanwhile, back in Colombia, a bomb blast destroyed the mayor's offices in the northern town of Codazzi on the 30th.

There was a melancholy prediction made in my September forecast (published to the World Wide Web and sent to my clients in August). Speaking of the September 3 Venus-Saturn opposition, I foresaw that a "somber, even sad tone characterizes both individual and mass psychology around this time." This one came true in an awful way, and ended up as perhaps the major news story of the year: the death of Princess Diana, and the worldwide wake that followed. (The death of Mother Teresa was virtually ignored in comparison. I guess Princess trumps Saint every time.)

All in all, those 1997 predictions were very much on the mark. Of course the skeptics and cynics will say it was all due to mere chance, guesswork and the like. The fact remains that some of the major news stories of the year showed up in my forecasts before they turned up on CNN. You figure it out. Meanwhile, if you want the 1998 headlines NOW, just check my year-ahead forecast.

Enter Astropro! Richard Nolle, Certified Professional Astrologer
phone or fax 602-753-6261 - email rnolle@astropro.com
Box 26599 - Tempe, AZ 85285-6599 - USA
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