The major stock market averages opened mixed this morning (Dow -30 pts; SPX flat). It’s still a trader’s market with lots of back-and-forth but no trend. But now we’re in August and there’s no trade volume to speak of. So in some respects the day-to-day commentary doesn’t matter much. Today’s trade action—defensives leading; cyclicals mostly lagging; foreign markets lower—is exactly the opposite of what we saw earlier this week. The VIX Index—which attempts to measure investor fear—is down around 10.8. The dollar is appreciating in value against a basket of foreign currencies, and is now up 3.5% on the year. WTI crude oil is up modestly to trade around $67.10/barrel. Bonds are trading slightly higher today. The 5-year and 10-year Treasury yields are back down around 2.81% and 2.94%, respectively.
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