Before the Open (Aug 22)
Good morning. Happy Wednesday.
The Asian/Pacific markets closed mostly down, but only Hong Kong (down 1.1%) dropped more than 1%. China, New Zealand and Singapore dropped more than 0.5%. Europe is currently mostly down. Norway, London and Stockholm are down more than 1%. Futures here in the States point towards a negative open for the cash market.
The dollar is up. Oil and copper are down. Gold and silver are up.
The Greek Prime Minister is asking the Eurogroup President for an extension of their fiscal programs, moving from 2014 to 2016 (just kicking the can down the road). Supposedly an annoucement will be made at noon.
DELL missed earnings and sales expectations and then cut its forecast for the year. The stock is down 6% in pre market trading.
BHP did well with earnings but said it would delay its $20 billion Olympic Dam copper expansion and would not approve any other major projects this year.
FOMC Minutes get released today. This used to be a closely read document, but many less Wall St. participants expect QE3 right now, so I don’t think it’s a game changer.
Lots of traders are freaking out because the market gapped up yesterday, pushed higher and then sold off and closed near its low. The intraday movement was certainly something we haven’t seen in a few weeks, but come on, I think the market is entitled to drop a couple days. Are traders so demanding that they expect the indexes to move up uninteruptedly for months at a time? The S&P had rallied 9 of 11 days. A couple down days is perfectly normal and healthy. One day doesn’t change much. From a technical standpoint the market is in pretty good shape. If left alone, I think it does fine this fall. But news from Europe could still jerk prices around. My overall bias remains to the upside, but in the very near term, I’m being more cautious. I’ve already been in a mindset to swing mostly for singles, to not let a profit turn into a loss or not let a loss turn into a big loss. So for me it’s business as usual.
Aside from the specifics of yesterday, the chatter about an impending huge sell-off is ramping up. I’m reminded of Aug 2010 when a weak August combined with the Hindenburg Omen and Death Cross (the 50 crossing the 200) caused the bearish tone to be almost deafening. Then, starting in Sept, the S&P rallied 300 points in five months. I’m certainly not predicting this now, but the tone feels the same. There are so many people looking for a big sell-off to begin soon.
Be careful. More after the open.
headlines at Yahoo Finance
headlines at MarketWatch
this week’s Earnings
this week’s Economic Numbers