Late Equity Market Surge Put Stocks in Strong Position
A late surge in U.S.
equity markets helped put the three major indices in a strong position to
challenge their highs for the year. Traders looking for increased risk drove
equity markets higher from the start on Tuesday although there was a little
pause in the upside momentum at the mid-session. The June E-mini S&P 500
has exceeded a normal retracement after the recent break indicating a test of
the recent top is likely. At the current level itâ€™s pretty much up to investors
if they want to chase this market higher or play from another dip. Tension from the SECâ€™s lawsuit against Goldman Sachs has eased but Greece
continues to remain a concern. Traders are being cautious in case the SEC
announces more litigation. Risk sentiment could turn bearish quickly at current
levels so traders should watch the trading action carefully for any hint of
June Treasury Bonds and Treasury Notes traded flat most of the day but managed
to eke out a small gain by the close. Traders are watching developments in the
stock market for direction. A sharp sell-off in the equities will most likely
trigger a strong rally in the Treasuries but gains will be limited because of
the increased supply.
June Gold finished up on Tuesday because of greater demand for risk and the
mixed U.S. Dollar. June Crude Oil settled into a range. The stronger Dollar and
weaker Euro weighed on the market. News that air traffic has resumed in parts
of Europe helped to underpin crude oil because
of increased demand for jet fuel.
The Bank of Canada voted this morning to leave interest rates at 0.25% but
strongly hinted that interest rates would increase sooner than expected because
of the strong economic growth and the fear of inflation. For over a year, the
BoC has indicated that rates would remain low until at least July 1. Todayâ€™s
policy statement indicates that June 1 is likely the date rates will begin to
The policy statement issued by the BoC included the following, â€śWith recent
improvements in the economic outlook, the need for such extraordinary policy is
now passing, and it is appropriate to begin to lessen the degree of monetary
stimulus.â€ť With this statement, the BoC removed a commitment made several
months ago to keep interest rates at current levels through the middle of the
Although this policy shift was widely anticipated by financial traders, the
June Canadian Dollar rallied sharply and closed in a position to take out the
recent main bottom at .9952. Traders feel that the improving economy and
likelihood of additional rate hikes during the next few months should keep
upside pressure on the Canadian Dollar.
The U.S. Dollar finished mixed, posting gains versus the Euro, Swiss, and
Japanese Yen while struggling against the British Pound, Canadian Dollar and
The June Euro remained under pressure on concerns the recently approved
European Union rescue package will not be enough to stem the financial slide in
Borrowing costs continue to plague Greece with the cost of debt eating
up much of its cash flow. The spread between Greek Bonds and German Bunds
remains wide indicating that investors believe an investment in Greece is a
high risk proposition. Some European Union members are already anticipating the
possibility of another bailout proposal.
The June British Pound surged to the upside this morning following the
release of better than expected Consumer Price data and managed to hold on to a
portion of its gains despite numerous attempts to push it lower.
Todayâ€™s CPI figure sent a signal that the Bank of England is likely going to
pass on an increase in its quantitative easing program at its next meeting in
May. The increase in inflation came as a surprise to the central bank as well
as market participants because the BoE has been warning about the possibility
Gains were most likely being limited on Tuesday by election concerns. Many
traders feel this market is not likely to trend until after the May 6th
election. Furthermore, traders are still worried the election will result in a
hung parliament which will make it difficult to pass legislation to curb the
Stronger demand for higher risk assets helped to drive the June Japanese Yen
lower. Signs that the global economic recovery is back on track encouraged
investors to take on more risky assets like gold, crude oil and equities.
Tension over the Goldman Sachs fraud charges eased enough to draw investors
back into higher yielding assets.
The weaker Euro helped break the June Swiss Franc. Traders are anticipating
more intervention by the Swiss National Bank in an effort to protect the
currency and the Swiss export market.
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Mon 18 Dec
10:00 EZ- final HICP Tue 19 Dec
09:00 DE- IFO Survey
13:30 US- Housing Starts/Permits
13:30 US- Current Account Wed 20 Dec
15:00 US- Existing Homes Sales
15:30 US- EIA Crude Thu 21 Dec
03:00 JP- BOJ Decision
13:30 CA- CPI & Retail Sales
13:30 US Weely Jobless
13:30 US- GDP Fri 22 Dec
09:30 US- GB- GDP
13:30 US- core PCE Deflator & Presonal Income
15:00 US- New Homes Sales
15:00 US- final University of Michigan
17:00 US- early Closes Mon 25 Dec
00:00 Christmas Holidays
Potential Trading Opportunities
POTENTIAL PRICE RISK: Medium Mon--10:00 GMT-- EZ- final November HICP. flash data are rarely changed.
POTENTIAL PRICE RISK: HIGH- Medium Tue --09:00 GMT-- DE- IFO Survey. Key report but usually not a market-mover
POTENTIAL PRICE RISK: HIGH- Medium- Tue --13:30 GMT-- US- Housing Starts and Permits. Leading indicators of activity
POTENTIAL PRICE RISK: HIGH-Medium- Wed --15:00-- US- Existing Homes Sales. Top Housing statistic
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