Wednesday, August 01, 2012

Fed Chief Says No to QE and Stocks Respond by Closing Lower

Leading up to the Federal Reserve rate annoucement was the big story was the software glitch hit by Knight Capital. Gigantic volume struck the NYSE causing very erratic trading in nearly 150 stocks. Just when confidence in the stock market is grim we get another flash crash incident. At least the news story distracted the majority prior to the Fed Announcement. Disappointing the market the Federal Reserve failed to deliver a new quantitative easing program. NASDAQ and Small Cap stocks lead the market lower with the Russell 200 finishing down more than 2%. It certainly doesn’t help when Knight Capital is down more than 33%, but small cap weakness continues. Preliminary volume indicates the NASDAQ was able to avoid a distribution day despite the losses on the session. Not a great day for bulls as the market will be hyper-focused on the ECB tomorrow before the opening bell. While the markets closed up lower the VIX failed to rally to show fear amongst sellers. The VIX has not been signalling any fear in this market. Today was no different despite the market not getting another round of QE. The lack of fear in the system can mean many things, but one thing it tells us upside will be limited and any large gains are a ways away. In addition to VIX, bond yields lept and closed higher after the Fed announcement. Rising bond yields and falling stock prices aren’t usually a norm. Sure, rising bond yields are a negative for the government and its financing activities. For stocks, from a historical view rising bond yields have been a big positive for the markets. While today may be an anomaly, it will be something to pay attention to going forward. Now it is onto the ECB tomorrow and then the July jobs report on Friday. More fireworks are set to hit the market and we’ll be ready. Remember, rule number one of cutting your losses!

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