Retail Sales

TRADE WAR MOVES TO DEFCON 4

Stocks gapped down at the open this morning. The Dow is currently down 350 pts and the SPX is down 1.5%. Nearly every sector of the market is down more than 1%, led by energy and tech (-2%). Domestically oriented stocks like healthcare insurance, real estate and utilities are holding steady. But companies exposed to the trade war are getting hit. A lot of this is headline driven (see below). The VIX Index spiked to 17.5. Commodities are falling in value, save gold (+1.5%). WTI crude oil is down 3% to $53.60/barrel. Bonds are sopping up the negativity and benefiting from it. The 10-year Treasury Note yield fell back to 1.55% and the iShares 20+ Year Treasury Bond ETF (TLT) is up nearly .9% this morning. The often cited “yield curve” difference between the 2-year and 10-year Treasury yields is still barely positive. This is a technical indicator bond traders watch in order to gauge the chances of an economic recession within the next year or two.


*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.

TRADE WAR IS TAKING A TOLL

Stocks opened modestly higher this morning (Dow +38 pts; SPX +.16%). Defensive sectors—utilities, consumer staples, real estate—are leading way. On the other hand, energy, industrials and tech are flat to down in early trading. The VIX Index is holding its ground at 21.8 and VIX September futures are trading at 20.4. So despite incredibly bearish financial news media coverage, trading aren’t panicking. European markets will close slightly lower, whereas Asian markets were mostly higher overnight. Oil is down in price again; WTI crude is down 1% to trade around $54.60/barrel. The dollar is stronger after hints by an official at the European Central Bank (ECB) that a bigger monetary stimulus package is coming. Bonds are trading uniformly higher today as yields continue to drop. Junk bonds are up about .25% after some better than expected reports on the economy. But Treasuries are also catching a bid. The 10-year Treasury Note yield has fallen to just 1.55%, the lowest since September 2016.


*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.

EARNINGS SEASON KICKS OFF

Major US stock market averages opened mixed this morning. The Dow is currently 28 pts and the SPX is down .2%. The Nasdaq is also down .2%. Industrials (especially transports) and materials sector stocks are rallying. On the other hand, utilities and real estate are down on a bump in interest rates. Commodities are mixed; gold and iron ore are down, but oil continues to recover. WTI crude oil is hovering around $60/barrel. It was trading down around $51/barrel one month ago. Bonds are selling off a bit today on rising interest rates. It seems like the better-than-expected jobs report back on July 5th marked a turnaround in rates. The 10-year Treasury yield has risen to 2.13% from 1.95% since then.


*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.

MARKET AT THE MERCY OF TRADE HEADLINES

Stocks gapped down at the open this morning, but quickly recovered after President Trump said he would delay planned auto import tariffs hikes. The Dow is currently up 41 pts and the SPX is up .5%. By the way, the Dow had its best day in a month yesterday. Ten of eleven sectors are in the green, led by communications services (+1.6%) and tech (+1%). Banks, on the other hand, are down along with interest rates. The VIX fell back to 17.3 today. Commodities are also trading higher today. WTI crude continues to climb on fears of Iranian terrorism in the Persian Gulf. Bonds are trading higher across the board, forcing yields lower. The 10-year Treasury Note yield is back down to 2.39% and will probably test its near-term support level of 2.37%. One doesn’t normally see stocks and bonds move in tandem. But of course any time geopolitical tensions rise one can expect safe-haven trades like gold and Treasuries to move higher.


*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.

RETAIL SALES REBOUND

Stocks opened higher this morning (Dow +100 pts; SPX +.13%). Real estate and utilities are catching a bid after a rough week. Industrials are also in the green after Honeywell’s (HON) earnings report. On the other hand, healthcare stocks continue to slide due to political risk. Popular health insurer UnitedHealth (UNH) is down 27% from its December high. Commodities are mixed; copper continues to climb (+1.4%) but oil and iron ore are flat. WTI crude oil is hovering around $63.60/barrel. Bonds are trading higher today as yields tick lower. The 10-year Treasury yield fell back to 2.56%.


*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.

RALLY EXTENDED BY BETTER ECONOMIC DATA

Stocks opened higher today (Dow +250 pts; SPX +.8%). A host of sectors are up more than 1% in early trading: financials, energy, industrials, materials, and communications services. Only the interest rate sensitive defensives (utilities, real estate, consumer staples) are in the red. The reason: better economic data in both the US and China. Commodities are trading broadly higher.


*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.

DON'T BE MISLEAD BY NEWS HEADLINES ON THE ECONOMY

The major stock market averages opened lower today on the some disappointing retail sales data (see below). The Dow is down 107 points and the SPX is down .2%. The consumer staples sector is down over 1% after a weak earnings report from Coca Cola (KO). Financials are down over 1%, and industrials are down .6%. This could be the consolidation we’ve been expecting after a sharp rally in January. Commodities are mixed in early trading. WTI crude oil is unchanged around $54/barrel. Bonds are modestly higher in price, lower in yield. Longer-term Treasury notes—as measured by iShares 20+ Year Treasury Bond ETF (TLT)—are up about .5% today. TLT is flat on the year, whereas corporate bond ETFs are mostly higher so far in 2019. As you might expect on a day when stock prices are falling, junk bonds are also weak.


*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.

SHUTDOWN DISRUPTION & FADING VISIBILITY ON THE ECONOMY

SHUTDOWN DISRUPTION & FADING VISIBILITY ON THE ECONOMY

SHUTDOWN DISRUPTION & FADING VISIBILITY ON THE ECONOMY

Stocks opened higher this morning despite the US Trade Representative’s comment that no progress was made in US/China trade talks last week. The Dow is currently up 137 points and the SPX is up 1%. A number of sectors are up more than 1% in early trading, including utilities, communications, tech, healthcare and consumer discretionary. European markets closed higher by about .5% and Asia was up 1% or more last night. The VIX Index has fallen back to 18, which is below the long-term average of 20. The dollar is a bit stronger today and commodities are also higher. WTI crude oil is back up to $51.70/barrel after crashing to $42 last month. Bonds are mixed. Treasuries are unchanged but junk bonds are modestly higher.


*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.

September 14, 2018

September 14, 2018

Stocks opened higher again this morning, but quickly gave way after a report that President Trump wants additional trade tariffs on Chinese imported goods. Here we go again; all the news-algorithm traders just hit the sell button. The Dow and SPX are currently down 38 pts and .1%, respectively. Up until a few moments ago, transports, banks and semiconductors were the best performing groups in early trading. Foreign stock markets—even emerging markets—are trading higher on US dollar weakness as well as action by the Turkish government to stem their budding financial crisis. European markets are poised to close up by about .4% and Asia was broadly positive overnight. WTI crude oil is unchanged at about $68.60/barrel. Bonds are selling off as interest rates resume their slow slog upward. The 5-year Treasury yield ticked up to 2.90%, the highest since May. The 10-year Treasury yield just moved back to 3.0%. It seems that whenever we get some positive economic news overseas, US Treasury yields rise. That’s because foreign investors often look to Treasuries as a safe haven investment when times are uncertain in their own countries.


*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.

July 16, 2018

The major stock market averages are meandering aimlessly today (Dow & SPX flat). Financials are up 1.2% after some positive earnings announcements (see below). Telecoms are also higher in early trading, but most other sectors are in the red. The VIX Index jumped back up to 12.6, but that’s still considered very low. Most European markets will close down slightly today, and except for Japan, Asian markets were down overnight. Oil is taking a hit, down 3% after Treasury Secretary Mnuchin said some US oil importers could get waivers to continue buying Iranian oil temporarily. “We want people to reduce oil purchases to zero, but in certain cases if people can’t do that overnight, we’ll consider exceptions.” Seems like a massive over-reaction by oil traders, but they’ve always been good at creating volatility where it’s not needed. Anyway, most other commodities are also in the red today. Year-to-date, the Bloomberg Commodity Index is down 5.7%. Bonds are trading modestly lower this morning as yields tick upward. But there is now only 10 basis points difference between the 5-year and 10-year Treasury note yields. The yield curve continues to flatten.


*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, 2018

The stock market opened lower this morning (Dow -274 pts; SPX -.46%; Nasdaq -.35%) on some weak retail sales data as well as continued trade war fears. Cyclical sectors are leading to the downside, with industrials down over 1%. Utilities are in the green but stand alone. Since President Trump’s proclamation on import tariffs, fears over a potential trade war have stifled the industrials sector (down 2%), and the materials sector (down 1%). Boeing (BA) is down over 3% today. Oil is holding steady at $60.70/barrel. Bonds are rising in prices as yields tick lower. The 5-year Treasury yield is hovering around 2.62% and the 10-year is at 2.82%. Over the last month, the yield curve has flattened. The difference between the 2-year and 10-year yields is back down to .56%. That’s because recent economic reports show inflation is very tame but investors believe the Federal Reserve will go ahead with three interest rate hikes this year.


*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.

January 16, 2017

US stocks surged again today on the back of better than expected earnings announcements. The Dow is currently up 150 pts and the SPX is up .26%. But don’t expect all of that to stick; the earnings news wasn’t that great. Believe it or not, the real estate is leading the way +1.2%. The healthcare sector (specifically pharmaceuticals) is also up big after Merck’s (MRK) new drug Keytruda fared well in a clinical trial. Finally, semiconductors are up .9% after Taiwan Semiconductor (TSM) beat earnings expectations. European stock markets are mixed today but Asia was mostly positive overnight. Commodities are trading lower today. Copper is down 1% (and 3% on the year). WTI crude oil is down .5% to trade just under $64/barrel. Bond prices are slightly higher today. The 5-year Treasury yield is hovering around 2.35% and the 10-year yield is trading at 2.54%.


*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.

January 12, 2018

Stocks surged at the open (Dow +197 pts; SPX +.46%) on better than expected earnings announcements. Nine of eleven major market sectors are in the green, led by consumer discretion (+.8%) and industrials (+.8%). The KBW Bank Index (BKX) is up about .6% after several big banks reported earnings this morning. Utilities are flat and real estate is down another .7%. The dollar is weaker (now down 1% on the year) and commodities are mixed. WTI crude oil is trading down .5% to $63.50/barrel, but has been rising for the past four weeks. Bonds are selling off again. The 5-year Treasury is up around 2.35% and the 10-year is back up to 2.56%.


*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.

December 14, 2017

Stocks gapped up again today, but quickly fell flat (Dow +1 pt; SPX flat). The tech sector is trading higher, but telecoms, materials and healthcare are in the red. The VIX Index is trading down to 9.8. European markets are poised to close .3% lower. The dollar is a bit stronger against the Euro after the European Central Bank (ECB) said Eurozone inflation will remain low for the foreseeable future. In other words, there is no reason to rush toward reducing monetary stimulus. Commodities are trading mixed. WTI crude oil is holding steady at $57.75/barrel. Bonds prices are slightly lower today. The 5-year Treasury note yield is up toward 2.15%. The 10-year yield is back up to 2.37%. In fact, the 10-year has been trading in a very tight range of 2.32% to 2.40% for the past month. Yesterday, the Federal Reserve’s Open Market Committee raised its short-term policy interest rate by .25% to a target range of 1.25% to 1.50%. The move was widely expected. And by the way, the Fed lowered its forecast for unemployment in 2018 to just 3.9%. 


*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.

November 15, 2017

The major stock market averages gapped down at the open, but are recovering somewhat. At the moment, the Dow is down 73 pts and the SPX is down .26%. The SPX is now about 1% off of its recent high and could fall another .8% to test its 50-day moving average. The energy sector is down about .8% this morning, following on yesterday’s decline. Other groups leading the dip are utilities, pharmaceuticals, semiconductors and retailers. Banks and telecoms are up a bit. European markets are poised to close about .5% lower and Asia was down more than that overnight. WTI crude oil is down another .6% to trade around $55.30/barrel. We got some higher oil inventory data last night and I think traders are looking at the fact that oil has rallied very sharply over the last five months. So you can expect a pullback. Bonds are rising in price, falling in yield. The 5-year Treasury yield fell back to 2.05% and the 10-year yield dipped to 2.35%.


*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.

October 13, 2017

Stocks gapped up at the open (Dow +30 pts; SPX .17%). Most sectors are in the green as earnings announcements track better than expected. Tech, materials and energy are leading the way. Only healthcare, telecom and utilities are in the red. Commodities are mostly higher on the day and oil is trading up 1% to $51/barrel. Bond prices are modestly higher again today as yields sag. The 5-year Treasury yield is back down around 1.91% and the 10-year yield is back down to 2.29%.


*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, 2017

Stocks opened higher this morning (Dow +45 pts; SPX +.3%). The energy sector is rebounding (+1%) along with oil prices, as are transports and biotechs. But defensive sectors like utilities and real estate are also faring well. The VIX Index is sinking as stocks head higher; now hovering around 11.8. Traders often say 20 is the level that divides benign and fearful/volatile market conditions. The VIX hasn’t touched 20 for over a year. By the way, VIX April futures are trading around 13.7, which is still very tame. Commodities are mostly higher today (copper, gold, oil, ag products). WTI crude oil is back up to $48.50/barrel today. Bonds are up in price, down in yield. And since this is the day we’ll hear from the Federal Reserve regarding an expected interest rate hike, that should tell you the bond market has already priced it in. The 5- and 10-year Treasury yields are down slightly to 2.11% and 2.58%, respectively.


*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.

February 16, 2017

Stocks are flat in early trading (Dow -7 pts; SPX -.14%). Real estate is leading the way, up 1%. Tech, telecom, materials and utilities are modestly higher. The rest of the landscape is down a bit. By the way, the Trump Rally (which began the day after the election) has now eclipsed 10% for the SPX. The dollar is a bit weaker today and commodities are mixed. WTI crude oil is trading flat at about $53.20/barrel. Bonds are slightly higher on the day. The 5-year Treasury yield is hovering around 1.96% and the 10-year Treasury is trading at 2.47%. On average, economic data are improving and that has pushed rates up over the last week. 


*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.

January 13, 2016

Stocks opened higher today (Dow +7 pts; SPX +.28%). Financials are powering ahead, up 1.1% in early trading. Biotechs and semiconductors are also up nearly 1%. Utilities, REITs and materials stocks are down modestly. The VIX Index is down again, now trading around 11, giving room for the stock market to run. Oil prices are down a bit to trade around $52.40/barrel, but anything over $50 will likely be conducive to the stock rally. Bond prices are lower on the day as yields tick up. The 5-year and 10-year Treasury yields are trading at 1.91% and 2.41%, respectively. 


*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.

December 28, 2016

Stocks opened lower this morning (Dow flat; SPX -.27%). Much is begin made of the Dow’s attempt to achieve the 20,000 mark, which is an arbitrary or “psychological” level. But since Dec. 20th when it first looked like a real possibility, markets have treaded water. And trade volume has been light. Today, all eleven sectors are down, led by REITs (-.9%), semiconductors (-.6%) and biotechs (-.6%). The VIX Index climbed back to 12.5 and VIX January futures are trading around 14.3. But traders aren’t expecting a lot of volatility in the next 30 days. And that’s strange because the last three Januarys have been weak for the stock market. WTI crude oil is hovering around $54/barrel. Bonds are modestly higher in price as yields dip. The 5- and 10-year Treasury yields are trading at 2.06% and 2.55%, respectively. 


*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.