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Thursday June 10, 2010 - 03:59:30 GMT
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Stocks Plunge from High after Euro Breeches 1.20 Level

The E-mini S&P 500 plunged from its high late in the session after testing a short-term retracement level at 1074.50.  Increased demand for higher risk assets helped drive up the equity markets early, but comments from Fed Chairman Bernanke and less than stellar economic data from the Fed’s Beige Book encouraged investors to take profits, driving the index lower into the close.


Despite the early strength in the indices throughout the first half of the session, traders remained cautious about the move, watching the Euro for direction. Once the Euro broke through the psychological 1.20 price level, traders turned bearish, accelerating the break to the downside.


Technically the June E-mini S&P 500 confirmed Tuesday’s daily closing price reversal bottom but ran into resistance at a short-term 50% price level at 1074.50. The key support level to watch until June 14th is 1045.00. A close under this price could trigger the start of a break to 1004.00 by June 23rd.


September Treasury Bonds posted a strong recovery into the close due to the weakness in the equity markets. Earlier on Wednesday, the T-Bonds were trading weaker because of the stronger equity markets and the $21 billion U.S. Treasury Note debt sale. There is was also speculation that the Fed may be preparing to raise interest rates. After the Beige Book showed only a moderate recovery taking place, traders drove up T-Bonds on the thought that the economy was too weak for the Fed to follow-through on its promise to begin tightening rates sooner than expected.


Technically, the T-Bonds found support at a 50% level at 123’22 before the late session break in U.S. equity markets helped pare losses. Wednesday afternoon the Treasury reported that demand for its 10-Year Treasury Notes was about average.


August Gold traded sharply lower earlier in the trading session after investors took profits after the recent run-up because of greater demand for equity prices. Technically this market stopped inside a retracement zone at $1226.30 to $1219.70. A late session break in stocks helped gold pare its earlier session losses, sending the metal higher into the close. Watch the equity markets this week for direction. Gold seems to be a little more sensitive to stock market movement rather than the Dollar at this time.


Increased appetite for risky assets helped drive September Crude Oil higher Wednesday morning.  The short-term range is 69.62 to 77.84. This range created a retracement zone at 73.64 to 72.69. Holding this retracement zone helped trigger today’s short-covering rally. A trade through 77.84 will turn the main trend to up.


Fundamentally, higher stock prices helped underpin crude oil most of the day. The late session sell-off in the equity markets had very little effect on crude into the close. This could be a sign that the break in equities may have been over-extended. Additional support came from a weekly report showing that inventories had dropped more than expected. Look for a drive to at least 78.00 unless 73.64 fails to hold as support.


The Dollar rose against the Euro late in the trading session after the release of the Fed’s Beige Book. The business survey showed subdued U.S. economic growth which led speculators to believe the Fed won’t be raising interest rates soon despite what investors had earlier interpreted from Chairman Bernanke’s comments.


Some traders also attributed the break to position evening ahead of the European Central Bank’s policy meeting on Thursday. Although the ECB is expected to leave interest rates unchanged, investors are worried about its statement and the post-meeting comments from ECB President Trichet. The statement is expected to contain bearish talk about the near-term growth of the Euro Zone economy. Trichet is expected, however, to sound more upbeat as he tries to unite the Euro Zone nations.


From a technical perspective, the inability to hold above the 1.20 psychological support encouraged weak longs to throw in the towel, triggering a hard break into the close.


Stronger demand for higher risk assets and slight optimism about Euro Zone finances helped to boost the June Euro most of the trading session. Early Wednesday morning, the Euro reached a high of 1.2072 before comments from Fed Chairman Bernanke and the results of the Fed Beige book strengthened the Dollar.


Higher equity and crude oil markets helped drive up demand for riskier assets. This strength spilled over to the Euro. In addition, traders were a little more optimistic about the survivability of the Euro after the European Union finalized its rescue plan. Although sovereign debt issues remain the major concern, short traders felt it was necessary to pare positions on this news.


Technically the Euro is still in a downtrend, but the charts indicate there is room to the upside should the current weakness prove to be only a retracement and test of the bottom at 1.1876. Recently hedge funds and large speculators have been shying away from selling weakness and have been more comfortable with selling retracements. If the bottom at 1.1876 is defended on this current break, then look for the start of a rally back to the nearest retracement zone. Watch for renewed selling pressure once the Euro completes its retracement to 1.2164 to 1.2233.



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