Each year Mercury goes retrograde in astrological signs that belong to one element and in 2016 it would be the Earth signs (Taurus/Virgo/Capricorn), which means Money or finances can be a major source of problems. This year it begins Jan 5 until Jan 26. Hence you are advised to be very practical in finding solutions to problems and to strongly adhere to your budget and time limits.
Mercury can never be more than 28 degrees from the Sun, and whenever it reaches its furthest distance from the Sun, it changes direction or goes retrograde. The force of energy exchange as earth and mercury brush by each other effect us whether we believe in it or not. If you are sensitive or empathic you begin feeling it's effects once it hits the retrograde zone in the sky Dec 29 and you feel it long after it goes direct when it exits the retrograde zone on Feb 18. Being the planet that rules communication and information~ Mercury rules all types of communication, including listening, speaking, learning, reading, editing, researching, negotiating, selling, and buying. Mercury also rules all formal contracts and agreements, as well as important documents such as book manuscripts or term papers, agreements, deeds, contracts, leases, wills, and so forth. Mercury retrograde can bring about much chaos and confusion in our lives. Scientific research has shown that Mercury has a rich concentration of Iron and hence it exerts a magnetic influence over humans and electronics. With that said, most of the advice given sounds like this: don't sign contracts, avoid traveling, try not to indulge in arguments, backup your hard drive, and don't buy electronics nor make big decisions. But we can't live in avoidance. Now that we are aware we can better prepare to face the challenges that may be in store for us. Mercury retrograde can also have very positive effects it allows us to reassess, revisit, readdress, redo, and redesign our plans. This allows us to stop, look, listen, and redirect our energies more productively. If you've lost documents in your computer during the last retrograde, they can suddenly reappear. People that have distanced themselves from you can request to reconnect. Break ups can be reunited and lost items can be found. If you are going to travel, make copies of important documents including one of your passport to make it easier to get a new one.
Although these Mercury retrograde periods can be frustrating it can also helps us find closure to certain situations. Empower yourself by acknowledging that the only thing we do not have control over is that this celestial event effects us. We gain our power back by choosing to respond in healthy ways that benefits us taking precaution rather than living recklessly. Journey well my friends.
The Periods When Mercury Will Retrograde from 2016 to 2020
January 5 - January 25, 2016 starts in Aquarius, ends in earth Capricorn
April 28 - May 22, 2016 in earth sign Taurus
August 30 - September 22, 2016 in earth sign Virgo
December 19 2016 - January 8, 2017 in earth Capricorn to late degree fire Sagittarius
December 19, 2016 to January 8, 2017 earth Capricorn, ends in late fire Sagittarius
April 9 - May 3, 2017 earth sign Taurus, ends in late degree fire Aries
August 12 - September 5, 2017 fire sign Leo - early earth Virgo, ends in late degree fire Leo
December 3 - December 22, 2017 in fire Sagittarius
March 22 - April 15, 2018 in fire sign Aries
July 26 - August 18, 2018 in fire sign Leo
November 16 - December 6, 2018 in fire Sagittarius, ends in late degree water Scorpio
March 5 - 28, 2019 in water Pisces
July 7 - 31, 2019 starts in fire Leo, ends in water Cancer
October 31 - November 20, 2019 in water Scorpio
February 18 - March 9, 2020 in water Pisces, ends in late air Aquarius
June 17 - July 12, 2020 in water Cancer
October 13 - November 3, 2020 in water Scorpio, ending in late air Libra