Monday, July 29, 2013

Market Participants await Economic Data and the Fed

A quiet day on Wall Street today as summer trading continues. Many are likely still trying to recover from their weekend festivities. Perhaps many were with Steve Cohen. Pending home sales weren’t as bad as the market was looking for, but was still negative month over month. Dallas Fed Manufacturing activity index was lower than expected coming in at 4.4 (expectations were for a reading of 7.5). The market was able to find its footing just after the European close. NYSE volume ran just below Friday’s level and closed that way too. NASDAQ saw volume drop too. Major indexes were able to avoid distribution given volume was lower on the day. Today was not a game changer as this uptrend continues to march on. The talk of the town continues to be whether or not the Fed Chief Ben Bernanke will hint or talk about tapering the Fed bond buying program. QE and ZIRP have destroyed those who have saved by compressing short-term and long-term rates forcing folks into riskier assets. How does this translate to how we react in the market? It does not, but as a matter of policy debate we can certainly point out how much we have destroyed the earning power from savings. Who wins out Wed the Doves or Hawks? Leading the S&P 500 higher today were utilities. Despite the 10 year yields rallying slightly today utilities found love. On the downside the two notable groups lower were Financials and Oil & Gas. While Oil & Gas lead to the downside losing .84% Financials were down .72%. If it weren’t for the Financials earnings growth would be downright dismal. ZeroHedge has been quite vocal on this point. Financials or XLF is one sector to watch. While a pullback is normal, but if the group turns into ITB/XHB would be a big red flag for this market. Until then, there is no reason to think this uptrend can’t continue. We can guess if the market has topped or not, but we simply do not have evidence it has done so. Yes, housing stocks have rolled over and are poised to continue lower. However, they are really the only group looking like the downside is the path of least resistance. Cut those losses.

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