European Strength Driving U.S. Futures Markets Higher
Investor sentiment is up this morning, driving U.S.
stock index futures higher in the wake of strong earnings results from European
banking giants UBS and Deutsche Bank. Investors are also buying in anticipation
of strong earnings results from Aetna, Inc., Anadarko Petroleum Corp., DuPont
and Lockheed although banking stocks are expected to carry the market today.
Today traders will have a chance to react to two U.S.
economic reports: the Case-Shiller 20 City Index and Consumer Confidence. The
Case-Shiller housing report for May is expected to rise to 4.0% from 3.8%. This
will be the biggest rise in the index since September 2006. Consumer Confidence
is expected to come in at 51 which is down from 52.9. A greater than expected
drop will fuel concerns about a double-dip recession.
Treasury Bonds and Notes are trading lower in anticipation
of better housing numbers. A strong number will pressure the Treasurys as
investors cut demand for the safety of government debt. Investors are facing a
huge supply situation at this time. Today the U.S. Treasury will auction $38
billion in 2 Year Notes. Look for low demand at this auction as the expected
record low yield is expected to keep investors on the sidelines. Furthermore,
there is just too much demand for higher yielding equities at this time to
warrant strong demand for the lower-yielding T-Notes.
Demand for risky assets is helping to drive up September
Crude Oil this morning. Upside momentum is building which could drive this
market through the major swing top from June at 80.82. A key 50% retracement
level at 80.88 will be an important barrier this market will need to overcome
to trigger an acceleration to the upside. Today the American Petroleum Institute
oil inventory report is expected to show a decline of 2.3 million barrels. This
news could fuel an intraday upside breakout.
Surprisingly, August Gold is trading higher. Gold has been
steadily falling since the Euro bottomed as traders have been shedding their
hedges against a currency collapse. The rise in the stock indices has also been
pressuring gold as both markets have been competing for investment dollars.
August Gold is in a downtrend and may have to test a major 50% price at
$1158.30 before reaching a value area on the charts.
The Dollar is trading weaker across the board except the
Japanese Yen. Investors are feeling more confident about the global economic
recovery and shedding safer currencies. Commodity-linked currencies are trading
higher let by the Australian Dollar as traders buy ahead of tomorrowâ€™s CPI
report. A stronger than expected inflation figure is expected to solidify a
rate hike by the Reserve Bank of Australia. Strong demand for
equities is reigniting interest in the carry trader which is pressuring the
The Dow finished sharply higher after moving positive for
the year. Slow and steady was the move on Monday as stocks opened higher then
slowly built on their gains throughout the day buoyed by the news that U.S.
New Home Sales beat estimates and FedEx boosted its forecast
Early in the trading session, stocks got a boost as
investors were able to set aside risk because of the acceptance of the European
bank stress test results. Some traders were worried that given the weekend to
digest last weekâ€™s stress test data, investors would reconsider their bullish
tone set in motion on Friday. This was not the case, as investors held stocks
steady to better overnight despite widespread criticism of the techniques used
to assess the solvency of the European banking system.
Technically, the September E-mini Dow Jones futures contract
turned the main trend up on the daily chart with a move through 10367. The
chart indicates the market is in a position to test the .618 retracement level
at 10516 and the June top at 10536 over the near-term. The September E-mini
S&P 500 turned its trend up on the trade through 1099.25. This market is
struggling at a 50% level at 1107.00. Holding above this level could launch an
acceleration to the June top at 1129.50. Finally, the September E-mini NASDAQ
is in an uptrend on the daily chart. Holding the 50% level at 1875.75 could
help drive this market to the 61.8% retracement price at 1917.75.
Cycle watchers may have been disappointed by Mondayâ€™s strong
finish since several technical timers had been looking for a reversal top.
Mondayâ€™s action did not negate the outlook however as several key cycles are
also set to converge later in the week. Continue to watch for higher-highs, but
become cautious if an intraday reversal top develops.
While equity traders looked at yesterdayâ€™s New Home Sales
Report as friendly, Treasury Bonds and Notes rallied on the news. A one-month
bounce off of last monthâ€™s low was not enough to convince investors that
interest rates would rise because of the news. In fact, the Treasurys are still
suggesting the possibility of a double-dip recession because of the recent weak
economic reports as well as Fed Chairman Bernankeâ€™s bearish testimony.
Longer-term investors are pricing in the possibility of the
first rate hike in years by the Fed in September 2011. This clearly shows the
market still does not have strong confidence in the economy. This logic flies
in the face of the stock market rally which is being driven by better than
expected earnings and revenues. The question is what is the best indication of
the state of the economy, the broad-based economic reports or the earnings
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