Nasdaq Biotech Index (NBI)

January 9, 2017

Stocks opened higher again this morning (Dow +99 pts; SPX +.3%). Healthcare stocks are on the rebound after yesterday’s rout. In fact, the Nasdaq Biotech Index is up 1.6% at the moment. Banks are also rallying over 1%. Bond replacement stocks, such as utilities, telecoms and real estate are down. The dollar is stronger against a basket of foreign currencies and bonds are selling off. The 5-year Treasury yield shot up to 2.31%, which is a long-term resistance level going back to April 2011. The 10-year yield is also moving higher, to 2.53% (highest since last March). The next level of resistance is 2.63%. If Friday’s CPI inflation report comes in high, the 10-year could possibly hit that resistance level in short order.


*The foregoing content reflects the author's personal opinions which may not coincide with the opinions of the firm, and are subject to change at any time without notice. Content provided herein is for informational purposes only and should not be used or construed as investment advice or a recommendation regarding the purchase or sale of any security. There is no guarantee that these statements, opinions, or forecasts provided herein will prove to be correct. Past performance is not a guarantee of future results. Indices are not available for direct investment. Any investor who attempts to mimic the performance of an index would incur fees and expenses which would reduce returns. All investing involves risk. Asset allocation and diversification does not ensure a profit or protect against a loss. Finally, please understand that–as with other social media–if you leave a comment, it will be made public.

June 22, 2017

Stocks opened higher this morning, led by healthcare. The Dow is up 29 pts and the SPX is up .2%. The Nasdaq Biotech Index is surging 1.9% at the moment. Remember, biotechs severely under-performed the overall stock market last year and until a week ago the group was about even with the S&P 500 for 2017. So over the last few trading sessions we’ve seen significant fund flows into this area. On the other hand, both financials and energy are lagging today. The VIX Index is down around 10.4, and has been trading around this level for the past two months. Most commodities are lower today (and year-to-date). WTI crude oil is trading a bit higher this morning, around $42.80/barrel. Stocks will continue to be very sensitive to oil prices, which have fallen back to levels not seen since last August. Just about every Wall Street trader is trying to guess at the bottom for crude. Bonds are mostly unchanged today. The 5-year Treasury yield is hovering around 1.76% and the 10-year Treasury is languishing around 2.15%. 


*The foregoing content reflects the author's personal opinions which may not coincide with the opinions of the firm, and are subject to change at any time without notice. Content provided herein is for informational purposes only and should not be used or construed as investment advice or a recommendation regarding the purchase or sale of any security. There is no guarantee that these statements, opinions, or forecasts provided herein will prove to be correct. Past performance is not a guarantee of future results. Indices are not available for direct investment. Any investor who attempts to mimic the performance of an index would incur fees and expenses which would reduce returns. All investing involves risk. Asset allocation and diversification does not ensure a profit or protect against a loss. Finally, please understand that–as with other social media–if you leave a comment, it will be made public.

June 2, 2017

The major US stock market averages are higher in early trading (Dow +55 pts; SPX +.2%). Energy stocks are down 1.2% or more and banks (-.4%) have wiped out year-to-date gains. But most everything else is trading modestly higher. The Nasdaq Biotech Index is up over 3% in the past few days. The dollar is lower today in the wake of the jobs report (see below). WTI crude oil is trading down 2% to $47.20/barrel. Bonds are rising in price as yields fall. The 2-year Treasury yield, which is sensitive to Fed rate hike expectations, is down slightly to 1.28% (exactly where is was back in mid-December). The 10-year Treasury, which is more sensitive to long-term inflation expectations, is down to 2.15%. That’s the lowest since right after the presidential election.  


*The foregoing content reflects the author's personal opinions which may not coincide with the opinions of the firm, and are subject to change at any time without notice. Content provided herein is for informational purposes only and should not be used or construed as investment advice or a recommendation regarding the purchase or sale of any security. There is no guarantee that these statements, opinions, or forecasts provided herein will prove to be correct. Past performance is not a guarantee of future results. Indices are not available for direct investment. Any investor who attempts to mimic the performance of an index would incur fees and expenses which would reduce returns. All investing involves risk. Asset allocation and diversification does not ensure a profit or protect against a loss. Finally, please understand that–as with other social media–if you leave a comment, it will be made public.

April 5, 2016

Stocks gapped down at the open (Dow -90 pts; SPX -.8%; Nasdaq -.7%). All ten major market sectors are in the red; financials, healthcare and utilities are down over 1%. The VIX Index is trading up to 15, suggesting modestly higher volatility expectations. Believe it or not, the Nasdaq Biotech Index is higher—it seems institutional investors are stepping back into biotech after a 7-month drubbing. In addition, small-cap stocks and transports are faring a bit better than the Dow and SPX this morning. Commodities are mixed, and investors are beginning to notice that the inverse relationship between the dollar and commodities has broken down lately. Both the Bloomberg Commodity Index and the dollar are lower on the year. WTI crude oil is down slightly to $35.50/barrel today. Bonds are modestly higher (5-year Treasury yield at 1.18% and 10-year at 1.72%). There is some technical support for the 10-year yield right here, and it will likely bounce higher in the coming days.   


*The foregoing content reflects the author's personal opinions which may not coincide with the opinions of the firm, and are subject to change at any time without notice. Content provided herein is for informational purposes only and should not be used or construed as investment advice or a recommendation regarding the purchase or sale of any security. There is no guarantee that these statements, opinions, or forecasts provided herein will prove to be correct. Past performance is not a guarantee of future results. Indices are not available for direct investment. Any investor who attempts to mimic the performance of an index would incur fees and expenses which would reduce returns. All investing involves risk. Asset allocation and diversification does not ensure a profit or protect against a loss. Finally, please understand that–as with other social media–if you leave a comment, it will be made public.

April 4, 2016

Stocks opened down but (true to recent trend) are recovering. The Dow and SPX are currently flat. Healthcare and telecom sectors are leading the way. The Nasdaq Biotech Index is up 2% today after having been smashed this year. The VIX Index is trading up toward 14, but that’s still very tame. Year-to-date, the SPX and Dow are now in the green, up about 1.8% and 2.8%, respectively. The Nasdaq is lagging a bit, down 1.6% for the year. Oil and most other commodities are trading lower on the day. WTI crude oil down modestly to $36.50/barrel. Remember, back in mid-March oil was trading up around $40/barrel. So we’ve seen some give-back.


*The foregoing content reflects the author's personal opinions which may not coincide with the opinions of the firm, and are subject to change at any time without notice. Content provided herein is for informational purposes only and should not be used or construed as investment advice or a recommendation regarding the purchase or sale of any security. There is no guarantee that these statements, opinions, or forecasts provided herein will prove to be correct. Past performance is not a guarantee of future results. Indices are not available for direct investment. Any investor who attempts to mimic the performance of an index would incur fees and expenses which would reduce returns. All investing involves risk. Asset allocation and diversification does not ensure a profit or protect against a loss. Finally, please understand that–as with other social media–if you leave a comment, it will be made public.

March 15, 2016

Stocks dropped at the open again today. The Dow is down 26 pts and the SPX is off .5%. The Nasdaq is also down .5%. Energy, materials and healthcare are the worst performing sectors; all are down more than 1%. The Nasdaq Biotech Index is down more than 2.5%! We understand an executive from Express Scripts highlighted the rising cost of pharmaceuticals in a presentation this morning. So he’s just feeding the political firestorm over drug pricing. The VIX Index—a closely watched gauge of investor fear—is back up to 17. The dollar is a bit stronger on the day and commodities are lower. WTI crude oil is trading down to $36.30/barrel. The Bloomberg Commodity Index is down about .6% in early trading. Bonds are mostly unchanged; 5-year Treasury at 1.49% and 10-year Treasury at 1.96%.


*The foregoing content reflects the author's personal opinions which may not coincide with the opinions of the firm, and are subject to change at any time without notice. Content provided herein is for informational purposes only and should not be used or construed as investment advice or a recommendation regarding the purchase or sale of any security. There is no guarantee that these statements, opinions, or forecasts provided herein will prove to be correct. Past performance is not a guarantee of future results. Indices are not available for direct investment. Any investor who attempts to mimic the performance of an index would incur fees and expenses which would reduce returns. All investing involves risk. Asset allocation and diversification does not ensure a profit or protect against a loss. Finally, please understand that–as with other social media–if you leave a comment, it will be made public.

March 14, 2016

The major stock market averages opened modestly lower this morning (Dow -7 pts; SPX -.24%). Energy, healthcare and materials sectors are leading the market lower. Oil prices are down today; WTI -4% to about $37/barrel. Iran confirmed it will not agree—with Saudi Arabia, Russia and others—to freeze oil production at January levels. The country’s goal is to boost production from its current level around 2 million barrels per day to a target of 4 million barrels. Most other commodities are lower (Bloomberg Commodity Index -1% on the day and up slightly this year). Bonds are modestly higher as yields tick lower. The 5- and 10-year Treasury yields are trading at 1.47% and 1.96%, respectively. Speaking of bonds, “junk” or high-yield bonds are recovering from a 1-year rout. The SPDR High Yield Bond ETF (JNK) is actually up 2% for the year. Oil’s convincing move back over $30/barrel is helping to ease credit conditions. In addition, economic data has come in better than expected lately.


*The foregoing content reflects the author's personal opinions which may not coincide with the opinions of the firm, and are subject to change at any time without notice. Content provided herein is for informational purposes only and should not be used or construed as investment advice or a recommendation regarding the purchase or sale of any security. There is no guarantee that these statements, opinions, or forecasts provided herein will prove to be correct. Past performance is not a guarantee of future results. Indices are not available for direct investment. Any investor who attempts to mimic the performance of an index would incur fees and expenses which would reduce returns. All investing involves risk. Asset allocation and diversification does not ensure a profit or protect against a loss. Finally, please understand that–as with other social media–if you leave a comment, it will be made public.