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Monday April 5, 2010 - 23:25:41 GMT
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Demand for Higher Risk; Bullish Outlook for Economy Boosts Stocks

Demand for higher risk assets and a bullish outlook for the economy helped drive U.S. equity prices higher on Monday. Stocks opened higher and held on to gains after getting a boost from better than expected ISM Non-Manufacturing data and an unexpected positive change in pending home sales.

 

Although stocks were firm, the rally was a grind. Many traders felt overbought conditions triggered the labored rally, but at this time there is no alternative to the yields that stocks have been delivering. Although this market is still trending, gains could be limited by higher interest rate worries.

 

There is no technical significance of an 11,000 Dow, but the market did hesitate as it neared this price level today. Psychologically, crossing this barrier this week could trigger a surge to the upside as it will give traders a confidence boost.

 

The stronger U.S. economic data helped to pressure June Treasury Bonds and June Treasury Notes. Yields are rising which could encourage equity traders to lighten up their positions. We could be looking at the start of a bear market in Treasuries.

 

The weaker Dollar triggered a rally in June Gold and June Crude Oil. Generally speaking, when the Dollar weakens, demand goes up for Dollar-denominated commodities.

 

Gold closed within striking distance of the last swing top on the daily chart at $1133.90. Based on the main range of $1229.00 to $1044.50, traders should look for a rally into the retracement zone at $1136.75 to $1158.50.

 

The U.S. Dollar opened down and remains lower against most major currencies as traders seem to be reassessing Friday’s employment report while brushing aside today’s jump in ISM Non-Manufacturing and the unexpected surge in pending home sales.

 

The U.S. Dollar opened down and remained lower against most major Forex markets as traders seemed to reassess Friday’s employment report while brushing aside today’s jump in ISM Non-Manufacturing and the unexpected surge in pending home sales. Instead of supporting the Dollar because of its traditional relationship with the economy, investors instead took interest in stocks and Dollar-denominated commodities.

 

Some traders blamed the Treasury’s decision to postpone a ruling on whether China manipulates its currency for the weakness in the Dollar. They felt that the move was designed to defuse political tensions enough for the Chinese government to allow the Yuan to strengthen.

 

The Dollar seemed to hold its ground versus the Euro. At the close the June Euro finished lower. The strength in the U.S. economy was enough to weaken the Euro substantially along with the developing lack of confidence in the Greek financial bailout proposal. Traders may also be reluctant to take a position in the Euro ahead of Wednesday’s European Central Bank meeting. The consensus believes the ECB will leave interest rates unchanged and hint that rates will remain low until the Euro Zone recovery is sustainable.

 

The June British Pound closed better, but still had trouble with a key 50% level at 1.5294. Although recent reports have shown that the U.K. economy is growing, doubt continues to linger about the outcome of the election and the potential hung parliament that could hamper the country’s effort to reduce its budge deficit.

 

The June Swiss Franc traded in a tight range as traders await direction from the Euro. Traders are leaning a bit to the downside in anticipation of another intervention by the Swiss National Bank should the Euro weaken. Trading could be tight until Wednesday when the ECB announces its monetary policy decision.

 

Early Sunday night, the June Japanese Yen broke to its lowest level since August 2009.  Oversold conditions and position squaring ahead of Tuesday’s Bank of Japan meeting helped form a daily closing price reversal bottom. This formation could trigger a 50% correction of the last swing or a two to three day correction.

 

Stronger gold and crude oil helped support the June Canadian Dollar. Higher commodity prices and the outlook for a better economy helped to drive this pair toward parity. Traders also priced in the strong possibility the Bank of Canada will raise interest rates before the Federal Reserve. Foreign money is flowing into the Canadian economy because of the strong natural resource market and the sound banking system.

 

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