Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Stocks Slightly Higher into Final Hour on Short-Covering, Less Economic Fear

Broad Market Tone:

  • Advance/Decline Line: Slightly Higher
  • Sector Performance: Mixed
  • Volume: Slightly Below Average
  • Market Leading Stocks: Outperforming
Equity Investor Angst:
  • VIX 17.30 -1.65%
  • ISE Sentiment Index 124.0.0 -24.39%
  • Total Put/Call .84 +1.20%
  • NYSE Arms 1.41 +36.57%
Credit Investor Angst:
  • North American Investment Grade CDS Index 86.28 bps +.27%
  • European Financial Sector CDS Index 73.09 bps -.95%
  • Western Europe Sovereign Debt CDS Index 76.10 bps +2.48%
  • Emerging Market CDS Index 226.41 bps -3.0%
  • 2-Year Swap Spread 15.0 bps -1.0 bp
  • TED Spread 15.0 -2 bps
Economic Gauges:
  • 3-Month T-Bill Yield .14% +2 bps
  • Yield Curve 281.0 bps -2 bps
  • China Import Iron Ore Spot $153.60/Metric Tonne +1.39%
  • Citi US Economic Surprise Index +35.90 +1.4 points
  • 10-Year TIPS Spread 2.22% -1 bp
Overseas Futures:
  • Nikkei Futures: Indicating +43 open in Japan
  • DAX Futures: Indicating +21 open in Germany
  • Slightly Higher: On gains in my Retail, Medical and Tech long positions
  • Disclosed Trades: Added slightly to (GOOG) long, took profits in another long
  • Market Exposure: 75% Net Long
BOTTOM LINE: Today's overall market action is mildly bullish as stocks move slightly higher after the bears again failed to gain meaningful traction this morning despite rising sovereign debt angst. On the positive side, HMO, Wireless, Semi, Software, Internet, Oil Service and Alt Energy stocks are especially strong, rising .5%+. The 10-year TIPS spread is slightly lower and the 10-year yield is stable again today. US scrap steel prices have surged another 15.4% over the last five days. Weekly retail sales rose +3.6% this week versus a +3.4% gain the prior week and up from a +1.8% increase during the last week of February. On the negative side, Airline, Homebuilding, Disk Drive, Gold and Coal shares are falling .75%+ on the day. (XLF) is underperforming again and hovering just off session lows. The Greece sovereign debt cds is surging another +4.3% today, which is beginning to pressure the euro again. We could see some early morning weakness tomorrow on a sell-the-news reaction to the ADP jobs report and quarter-end profit-taking. I expect US stocks to trade mixed-to-higher into the close from current levels on short-covering and less economic fear.

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