unemployment rate

BAD NEWS IS GOOD NEWS

Stocks surged higher today in spite of a weak jobs report. The Dow is currently up 299 points and the SPX is up 1.1%. The best performing sectors are tech (+2%), consumer discretionary (+1.5%) and communications services (+1.4%). Financials is the lone sector in the red—bank stocks are down on lower interest rates. The VIX Index is up slightly to trade around 16. European stock markets closed up about 1% and Most of Asia was higher overnight. Commodities are mixed. WTI crude oil rebounded to $54/barrel after taking a massive beating over the last six weeks. The bond market is rejoicing this morning on falling interest rates. Treasuries are up across the board, and even junk bonds are rallying. The 10-year Treasury yield dipped to 2.09% and is now at levels last seen in September 2017.


*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.

STOCKS DOWN WITH HEADLINES

Stocks sank at the open, as is their custom this month. The Dow is currently down 367 pts and the SPX is down 1.5%. Energy is the worst performing sector, down 3.5% (see below). Most other sectors are down about 1% except the defensives (utilities, consumer staples, real estate). VIX Index June futures are trading up around 17, but that’s not considered elevated. There’s no real panic in the market, just a slow bleed on trade headlines. European stock markets closed down about 1.5% today and Asia was uniformly down overnight. The bond market is catching a bid—especially safe-haven Treasury bonds. The 10-year Treasury yield is down to 2.32%, the lowest level since November 2017.


*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 6, 2018

Stocks opened higher this morning as the jobs report and trade tariffs dueled for traders’ attention. The Dow is currently up 120 pts and the SPX is up .8%. Indeed, this is a traders’ market with low volume, lots of back-and-forth, but no real trend. At the moment, all eleven market sectors are in the green, led by healthcare (+1.3%). Biotechs are rallying on the back of a positive clinical trial for Biogen’s new Alzheimer drug. European markets are poised to close slightly higher on the session and Asian markets were (surprise, surprise) higher overnight. The VIX Index is back town to 13.6 and VIX July futures are trading down around 14.8. Oil is rising again; WTI crude is up around $73.60/barrel. The Bloomberg Commodity Index is up .3% today but still down on the year. Copper continues to struggle on fears that the emerging trade war could dent China’s economy. Bonds are trading higher in price—lower in yield—despite a positive jobs report. The 5-year and 10-year Treasury yields are hovering around 2.73% and 2.83%, respectively. So as an investor, you get only 10 more basis points in yield for locking up your money over an additional 5 years. The yield curve continues to flatten, and the Federal Reserve is increasingly squeezed between that fact and the fact of strong economic growth. Bloomberg Economics now believes the flat yield curve will convince the Fed to pause rate hikes. 


*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.

May 16, 2018

The major stock market averages opened mixed this morning (Dow flat; SPX +.17%). Cyclical sectors—consumer discretion, materials, tech, industrials—are leading the way. Utilities and real estate, however, are extending declines. Emerging markets are up 1% (now flat on the year). The VIX Index is trading back down under 14. Trade volume is light. The dollar is up again today and commodities are mixed. WTI crude oil is down .4% to trade around $71/barrel. And by the way, the DOE says total US oil production is up around 10.7 million barrels per day—a record high. Bonds are selling off again. The 5-year Treasury yield is up around 2.92% and the 10-year yield is up around 3.08%. 


*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 19, 2018

Stocks opened lower this morning (Dow -52 pts; SPX -.5%). The consumer staples sector is absolutely tanking, down 3%. Tech, materials and real estate are also down over 1%. The standout today is the financial sector, up 1% on rising interest rates. WTI crude oil is trading up yet again, now eclipsing $69/barrel for the first time since Nov. 2014. The move is partly contrived: Reuters is reporting Saudi officials want to push oil prices back up to $100/barrel. It is not clear, obviously, how supply-demand dynamics would support that. But if Bonds are trading lower as yields resume their march higher. In a somewhat surprising move, the 10-year Treasury yield jumped to 2.91% this morning, a 2-month high.


*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 9, 2018 Special Update

Up One Day, Down The Next

Last Friday’s jobs report was supposed to be the big event of the week. It was supposed to either send the all clear signal or upset the apple cart; to confirm or deny a spike in wage inflation; to let us rest easy about labor market strength or perhaps reveal a slowdown in hiring momentum. Alas, it never delivered the excitement traders were looking for. 

Not that Friday’s trading session lacked excitement. The Dow fell 572 points and the S&P 500 fell 2.2%, capping a week of extraordinarily large rollercoaster swings. In fact, Vanguard’s Jack Bogle said that with the possible exception of the 1987 crash, he’s never seen such volatility as characterizes this stock market. 

The jobs report and its standard set of figures on payrolls, unemployment, and wage growth turned out OK. Inflation isn’t spiking. The labor market isn’t over-heating. New payroll growth decelerated, but that was largely due to weather-related issues. Other metrics like average workweek were on track. Just as with other recent economic data, there’s nothing in the report to cause an unhinging of the stock market. Nothing to explain the spike in volatility. 

What hit the market on Friday was the perfect storm of words, not data. President Trump is again engaged in a war of words with the Chinese. Thursday evening, Mr. Trump asked the US Trade Representative to consider additional trade tariffs on $100bil worth of Chinese imports. In response, China’s Commerce Ministry issued a statement that it is ready to fight a trade war. “The Chinese side will follow suit to the end and at any cost, and will firmly attack, using new comprehensive countermeasures, to firmly defend the interest of the nation and its people.” On Friday morning, Mr. Trump Tweeted that the World Trade Organization (WTO) is giving an unfair trade advantage to China due to its classification of that country as “developing.” But while the war of words progressed, neither side moved closer to face-to-face negotiations. 

And there are signals that this issue isn’t going away soon. US Treasury Secretary Mnuchin said in a CNBC interview that while the Trump Administration doesn’t want a trade war, “there is the potential” for one. He is “cautiously optimistic” that both sides will reach a solution. In a radio interview, the president said, “I’m not saying there won’t be a little pain, but the market has gone up 40%, 42% so we might lose a little bit of it. But we’re going to have a much stronger country when we’re finished.” 

Also thrown into the mix on Friday was congressional testimony by the new Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell. He noted strong economic momentum in the US. “Given that the current pace of growth is above trend, my view is that we need to continue on the path of raising interest rates.” Mr. Powell’s message was a positive one, as expected. But considering the day’s events, investors were not in the mood to hear about further monetary tightening. The Dow took another leg down as he spoke. Mr. Powell tried to steer clear of trade tariff concerns, but when asked he said it’s “really too early” to estimate any economic impact. 

In that reply, Mr. Powell showed wisdom. We don’t yet know whether Mr. Trump’s sound bites constitute a new durable policy or simple rhetoric used as a negotiating tactic. We also don’t have a clue about the timeline for tariffs. Mr. Mnuchin said they “will take some period of time to go into effect. There will be public comment, while we’re in the period before the tariffs go on. We’ll continue to have discussions.” Besides, words change from day to day. Over the weekend, Mr. Trump eased his tone, Tweeting “President Xi and I will always be friends, no matter what happens with our dispute on trade.” Hence, the stock market bump this morning. 

The culprit for market volatility is clear. Words, in speeches, interviews and Tweets, made traders shoot first and ask questions later. That immediate re-pricing of investment risk may prove to be unwarranted, however. Aside of positive economic momentum, corporate earnings are expected to be very strong this year. Core business trends are largely positive and by one estimate $800bil in economic benefit will come from tax reform. US companies will begin reporting first quarter results this week, and we very much hope that investors and traders pay more attention to those reports than to presidential Tweets. As Bloomberg posits, “Markets Want to Rally—If Politicians Will Let Them.”
 


*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 6, 2018

tocks gapped down this morning on trade war tensions (not the jobs report). The Dow is currently down 364 pts and the SPX is down 1.17%. The defensive sectors—utilities, consumer staples, real estate—are not surprisingly faring better than cyclicals, but just about everything is in the red. The VIX Index is up a bit to trade just under 20. VIX April futures are around the same level. So the options market doesn’t seem to expect a full-blown trade war. European stock markets are poised to close slightly lower and Asia was mixed overnight. The dollar and most commodities are down a bit today. WTI crude oil is trading down around $62.70/barrel, continuing in the $59-$66 range. Gold is up about .4% this morning (and 2% on the year). Bonds are trading higher as yields dip. The 5-year and 10-year Treasury yields are hovering around 2.6% and 2.79%.


*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 9, 2018

The major stock market averages gapped up at the open (Dow +267 pts; SPX +1%) after an encouraging jobs report. The cyclicals are alive and well today—materials, energy, industrials, tech and financials are all up over 1%. Utilities and telecom sectors are in the red. The VIX Index is back down around 15.5. Commodities are broadly higher, except gold. WTI crude oil is back up over $61/barrel. Bonds are trading mostly lower. The yields on the 5- and 10-year Treasury bonds are back up to 2.67% and 2.91%.


*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 7, 2018

Stocks opened lower today. The Dow is currently down 170 pts and the SPX is down .47%. The dip is not surprising considering Gary Cohn’s resignation as the president’s chief economic advisor yesterday. Most of America couldn’t care less, but the investor class is clearly worried. At the moment, most sectors are trading lower led by energy, industrials and consumer discretionary. REITs and telecoms are trading modestly higher. By the way, year-to-date if you’ve not invested in consumer discretionary, financials and info tech sectors, you likely haven’t made money. Despite the return of volatility, cyclical sectors are performing well. Today, the VIX Index is up slightly to trade around 18.5. Commodities are mostly lower with WTI crude oil down around $62.10/barrel. Oil has traded in the range of $59-$66 this year. Bonds are mostly unchanged. The 5-year and 10-year Treasury yields are holding at 2.64% and 2.87%, 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 8, 2017

Stocks opened higher this morning (Dow +76 pts; SPX +.4%). Most market sectors are in the green, led by healthcare and energy. The only sectors retreating are utilities and consumer staples. The VIX Index is down to 9.7 and VIX January futures are trading down around 12.4. The dollar is stronger on the day due to some strong economic data. Commodities are also higher. WTI crude oil is back up to $57.45/barrel. Bonds are little changed but the yield curve steepened just a bit. The 5-year Treasury yield is fat at 2.14% and the 10-year is up around 2.37%.


*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 6, 2017

Stocks sank at the open after a disappointing jobs report. The Dow is currently down 33 pts and the SPX is down .28%. Just about everything is in the red except for gold miners, semiconductors and healthcare stocks. The VIX Index, which has been languishing below 10 for over a week, is up a bit to trade around 9.8. VIX October futures are up slightly to trade around 11. That’s not much of a move. Commodities are lower on the day; WTI crude oil is down 3% to $49/barrel. Despite a weak day for stocks, bonds are selling off as well. The 5-year Treasury yield shot up to 1.96% and the 10-year yield rose to 2.36%. It seems bond traders didn’t like the jobs report for a different reason—rising wage inflation.


*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 1, 2017

Stocks opened higher despite weak economic data (Dow +52 pts; SPX +.2%). Banks, semiconductors and transports are leading the way. Utilities and healthcare sectors are modestly lower. WTI crude oil is trading flat around $47.17/barrel. Storm flooding around Houston has shut down some oil refineries, and since there are very few of them around the country, gasoline prices are spiking. The national average price is up to $2.51/gallon from $2.33 before the storm. Bonds are down in price, up in yield today. The 5-year Treasury yield ticked up to 1.74% and the 10-year yield is trading at 2.16%.


*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.

August 4, 2017

Stocks opened higher after the monthly jobs report. The Dow is up 20 pts and the SPX is up .15%. Financials, tech and materials are leading the way. And as you would expect on a day when interest rates rise, utilities, telecom and consumer staples are falling behind. The VIX Index is back down under 10 today, and European stock markets are poised to close up 1%+. The dollar is sharply higher, also due to the jobs report. And crude oil is trying to make another run toward $50/barrel. Bonds are modestly lower in price as yield tick higher. The 10-year Treasury yield is sitting at 2.28%. I don’t want to make too much of this; remember, the 10-year yield is right in the middle of its trading range going back several months. 


*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 13, 2017

Stocks opened slightly higher today. The Dow is current up 18 pts and the SPX is up .1%. Retailers, banks, and some tech stocks are trading modestly higher, whereas telecoms, biotechs and gold miners are lower. The VIX Index is still hovering around 10. Most commodities are lower, although WTI crude oil is up about 1% to trade around $46.10/barrel. That’s great news for the stock market. Bonds are selling off again today as yields resume their slow march higher. The 10-year Treasury yield ticked up to 2.35% and I’m guessing the 10-year will soon test near-term resistance at 2.42%.


*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.

May 5, 2017

Stocks opened flat this morning in the wake of the jobs report. The Dow is flat and the SPX is up .1%. The big news is a “flash crash” in oil prices last night. In yesterday’s session, WTI crude oil plunged over $2/barrel to $45.50/barrel. Overnight, it gapped down briefly to $43.76/barrel. These are massive moves in a very short period of time. This morning, WTI is back up around $46.50/barrel. Not surprisingly, energy is the best-performing sector today, up 1%. Most commodities are trading higher as well today (iron ore, gold, copper). Bonds are not really moving much, which is surprising given the jobs report. The 5-year and 10-year Treasury yields are trading at 1.89% and 2.36%, 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.

April 7, 2017

Stocks opened flat this morning, which is a wonder given the payroll report and last night’s missile strike in Syria. Unlike yesterday, the defensive sectors of the stock market are leading (utilities, telecom, consumer staples). Among the cyclicals, only semiconductors and defense contractors are in the green. The VIX Index is trading up to 13.2. Not surprisingly, gold is up on the day and WTI crude oil is up to $51.90/barrel. Bonds are trading up in price, down in yield as you would expect given the events listed above. The 5- and 10-year Treasury yields are down to 1.86% and 2.33%, 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.

March 10, 2017

Stocks opened higher this morning, but quickly faded. The Dow is up 36 pts and the SPX is up .27%. Semiconductors (+1%) and gold miners (+.5) are up the most in early trading. Banks, biotechs and retailers are essentially flat, and energy stocks continue to slide. The VIX Index continues to languish under 12. The dollar is lower today and commodities are mixed. Gold is flat, copper is up .5% and WTI crude oil is down a bit to trade under $49/barrel. Bonds sold off immediately in response to the jobs report (see below), but since then have turned around. The 5-year Treasury yield is actually down a basis point to 2.11%. Ditto for the 10-year Treasury yield at 2.59%.


*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 6, 2017

Stocks opened lower but quickly turned around. At the moment, the Dow and SPX are up 30 pts and .16%, respectively. And by the way, the Nasdaq just hit a fresh all-time high. Telecoms are down 2.2% in early trading; that’s just give-back after they rallied 8% in December. Gold miners are down about 2.8% today, proving that gold is volatile. The energy sector is a bit lower even as crude oil holds steady at about $53.80/barrel. The VIX Index continues to trend lower and is now trading at 11.3. Typically, when the VIX is falling the stock market is rising. Bonds reversed course this morning and yields are up. The 5- and 10-year Treasury yields are trading at 1.91% and 2.141%, 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 2, 2016

Stocks opened modestly higher (Dow -10 pts; SPX +.17%%; Nasdaq +.17%). Today is sort of the mirror image of yesterday’s session. Interest rate-sensitive sectors like utilities and real estate are up big while the cyclical sectors like financials and consumer discretion are lagging. The VIX Index is down a bit to 14. And bonds are up in price today. The 5- and 10-year Treasury yields ticked down to 1.83% and 2.39%, respectively. WTI crude oil, on the other hand, continues to drive higher, now trading around $51.20/barrel. Commodity traders are really taking this OPEC production deal seriously…for now.


*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.