Friday, July 31, 2015

Market Week in Review

  • S&P 500 2,103.84 +1.16%*
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The Weekly Wrap by

*5-Day Change

Weekly Scoreboard*

  • S&P 500 2,103.84 +1.16%
  • DJIA 17,689.86 +.69%
  • NASDAQ 5,128.28 +.78%
  • Russell 2000 1,238.68 +1.03%
  • S&P 500 High Beta 32.16 +1.13%
  • Goldman 50 Most Shorted 138.85 +.09% 
  • Wilshire 5000 21,965.0 +1.20%
  • Russell 1000 Growth 1,024.55 +1.24%
  • Russell 1000 Value 1,012.87 +1.17%
  • S&P 500 Consumer Staples 515.20 +1.09%
  • Solactive US Cyclical 128.73 +2.49%
  • Morgan Stanley Technology 1,066.35 +1.06%
  • Transports 8,391.96 +3.96%
  • Utilities 583.94 +3.77%
  • Bloomberg European Bank/Financial Services 120.42 -.11%
  • MSCI Emerging Markets 37.13 +1.03%
  • HFRX Equity Hedge 1,208.03 -.64%
  • HFRX Equity Market Neutral 1,006.40 +.53%
  • NYSE Cumulative A/D Line 233,613 +.95%
  • Bloomberg New Highs-Lows Index -217 +286
  • Bloomberg Crude Oil % Bulls 16.22 unch.
  • CFTC Oil Net Speculative Position 234,419 -4.05%
  • CFTC Oil Total Open Interest 1,694,436 +1.54%
  • Total Put/Call 1.09 -21.58%
  • OEX Put/Call 7.31 +609.71%
  • ISE Sentiment 70.0 +7.69%
  • NYSE Arms 1.78 +17.88%
  • Volatility(VIX) 12.12 -11.79%
  • S&P 500 Implied Correlation 57.93 -2.59%
  • G7 Currency Volatility (VXY) 9.31 -.85%
  • Emerging Markets Currency Volatility (EM-VXY) 9.36 +2.52%
  • Smart Money Flow Index 16,914.95 +.87%
  • ICI Money Mkt Mutual Fund Assets $2.648 Trillion -.02%
  • ICI US Equity Weekly Net New Cash Flow -$3.201 Billion
  • AAII % Bulls 21.1 -35.1%
  • AAII % Bears 40.7 +59.0%
Futures Spot Prices
  • CRB Index 202.57 -1.20%
  • Crude Oil 46.79 -2.19%
  • Reformulated Gasoline 184.10 +.63%
  • Natural Gas 2.72 -2.23%
  • Heating Oil 158.40 -2.98%
  • Gold 1,094.20 -.40%
  • Bloomberg Base Metals Index 151.72 +.01%
  • Copper 235.0 -1.59%
  • US No. 1 Heavy Melt Scrap Steel 236.67 USD/Ton -4.28%
  • China Iron Ore Spot 53.41 USD/Ton +3.87%
  • Lumber 252.10 -5.4%
  • UBS-Bloomberg Agriculture 1,055.92 -2.32%
  • ECRI Weekly Leading Economic Index Growth Rate .2% -10.0 basis points
  • Philly Fed ADS Real-Time Business Conditions Index .1217 +8.18%
  • S&P 500 Blended Forward 12 Months Mean EPS Estimate 126.09 +.16%
  • Citi US Economic Surprise Index -15.4 -1.0 point
  • Citi Eurozone Economic Surprise Index 7.1 +12.7 points
  • Citi Emerging Markets Economic Surprise Index -11.4 +3.1 points
  • Fed Fund Futures imply 62.0% chance of no change, 38.0% chance of 25 basis point hike on 9/17
  • # of Months to 1st Fed Rate Hike(Morgan Stanley) 4.76 -7.93%
  • US Dollar Index 97.24 +.03%
  • Euro/Yen Carry Return Index 142.19 +.04%
  • Yield Curve 152.0 -6.0 basis points
  • 10-Year US Treasury Yield 2.19% -7.0 basis points
  • Federal Reserve's Balance Sheet $4.447 Trillion -.34%
  • U.S. Sovereign Debt Credit Default Swap 16.16 +4.30%
  • Illinois Municipal Debt Credit Default Swap 237.0 +1.31%
  • Western Europe Sovereign Debt Credit Default Swap Index 22.39 +1.40%
  • Asia Pacific Sovereign Debt Credit Default Swap Index 62.94 +2.44%
  • Emerging Markets Sovereign Debt CDS Index 293.35 -1.18%
  • Israel Sovereign Debt Credit Default Swap 64.06 -2.19%
  • Iraq Sovereign Debt Credit Default Swap 676.49 -6.07%
  • Russia Sovereign Debt Credit Default Swap 337.27 +.85%
  • iBoxx Offshore RMB China Corporates High Yield Index 121.1 +.40%
  • 10-Year TIPS Spread 1.74% -2.0 basis points
  • TED Spread 24.0 -2.5 basis points
  • 2-Year Swap Spread 23.25 -1.5 basis points
  • 3-Month EUR/USD Cross-Currency Basis Swap -19.5 unch.
  • N. America Investment Grade Credit Default Swap Index 69.87 -1.52%
  • America Energy Sector High-Yield Credit Default Swap Index 1,582.0 -2.38%
  • European Financial Sector Credit Default Swap Index 73.66 +3.12%
  • Emerging Markets Credit Default Swap Index 318.20 -.85%
  • CMBS AAA Super Senior 10-Year Treasury Spread  to Swaps 98.50 +1.5 basis points
  • M1 Money Supply $3.018 Trillion +.17%
  • Commercial Paper Outstanding 1,058.50 +1.0%
  • 4-Week Moving Average of Jobless Claims 274,750 -4,250
  • Continuing Claims Unemployment Rate 1.7%+10.0 basis points
  • Average 30-Year Mortgage Rate 3.98% -6 basis points
  • Weekly Mortgage Applications 376.60 +.77%
  • Bloomberg Consumer Comfort 40.5 -1.9 points
  • Weekly Retail Sales +1.20% -10.0 basis points
  • Nationwide Gas $2.66/gallon -.07/gallon
  • Baltic Dry Index 1,100 +1.28%
  • China (Export) Containerized Freight Index 818.85 -2.37%
  • Oil Tanker Rate(Arabian Gulf to U.S. Gulf Coast) 35.0 -17.65%
  • Rail Freight Carloads 270,952 -1.06%
Best Performing Style
  • Mid-Cap Value +1.8%
Worst Performing Style
  • Small-Cap Value +1.1%
Leading Sectors
  • Homebuilders +5.1%
  • Tobacco +4.6%
  • Road & Rail +4.3%
  • Utilities +3.9%
  • Steel +3.8%
Lagging Sectors
  • I-Banking -.9% 
  • Gold & Silver -1.9%
  • Oil Tankers -3.1%
  • Social Media -3.9%
  • Coal -5.9%
Weekly High-Volume Stock Gainers (35)
Weekly High-Volume Stock Losers (34)
Weekly Charts
*5-Day Change

Stocks Reversing Slightly Lower into Afternoon on Global Growth Fears, China Bubble-Bursting Worries, Commodity Declines, Energy/Tech Sector Weakness

Broad Equity Market Tone:
  • Advance/Decline Line: Higher
  • Sector Performance: Mixed
  • Volume: Slightly Below Average
  • Market Leading Stocks: Performing In Line
Equity Investor Angst:
  • Volatility(VIX) 12.32 +1.57%
  • Euro/Yen Carry Return Index 142.44 +.49%
  • Emerging Markets Currency Volatility(VXY) 9.40 +1.95%
  • S&P 500 Implied Correlation 57.98 +1.13%
  • ISE Sentiment Index 79.0 -8.14%
  • Total Put/Call .99 +32.0%
  • NYSE Arms 1.75 +30.86% 
Credit Investor Angst:
  • North American Investment Grade CDS Index 70.14 -1.54%
  • America Energy Sector High-Yield CDS Index 1,582.0 +.64%
  • European Financial Sector CDS Index 73.67 -1.77%
  • Western Europe Sovereign Debt CDS Index 22.39 +1.87%
  • Asia Pacific Sovereign Debt CDS Index 62.94 +.80%
  • Emerging Market CDS Index 316.90 +1.23%
  • iBoxx Offshore RMB China Corporates High Yield Index 121.08 +.11%
  • 2-Year Swap Spread 23.25 -.25 basis point
  • TED Spread 24.0 -.5 basis point
  • 3-Month EUR/USD Cross-Currency Basis Swap -19.5 +1.25 basis points
Economic Gauges:
  • 3-Month T-Bill Yield .06% unch.
  • Yield Curve 153.0 -1.0 basis point
  • China Import Iron Ore Spot $53.41/Metric Tonne -4.01%
  • Citi US Economic Surprise Index -15.4 +.9 point
  • Citi Eurozone Economic Surprise Index 7.1 +3.9 points
  • Citi Emerging Markets Economic Surprise Index -11.4 +1.4 points
  • 10-Year TIPS Spread 1.75 -1.0 basis point
  • # of Months to 1st Fed Rate Hike(Morgan Stanley) 4.76 -.52
Overseas Futures:
  • Nikkei 225 Futures: Indicating -35 open in Japan 
  • China A50 Futures: Indicating -309 open in China
  • DAX Futures: Indicating +2 open in Germany
  • Slightly Higher: On gains in my medical/retail/biotech sector longs
  • Disclosed Trades: Added to my (IWM)/(QQQ) hedges
  • Market Exposure: Moved to 25% Net Long

Today's Headlines

  • Greek Financial Markets Will Reopen Monday With Restrictions. Greece’s financial markets will reopen with some limitations to trading, the nation’s Finance Ministry said. Greek traders will be able buy stocks only if they use new money such as funds transferred from abroad, cash-only deposits or from money earned from the future sale of stocks, the Finance Ministry said in a decree on Friday. Foreign investors will be excluded from all restrictions, provided that they were already active in trading before the imposition of capital controls last month. The Athens Stock Exchange will reopen on Aug. 3, according to a separate e-mail statement from the bourse. That will follow a five-week shutdown, the longest since a stretch of almost six weeks that ended in January 1973.
  • Junk Bond Rally Loses Steam in Europe as Global Sell-Off Deepens. Europe, the only positive area for the global high-yield market this month, is succumbing to a global sell-off. Junk bonds in Europe lost 0.44 percent since July 21, according to Bank of America Merrill Lynch index data. The securities returned about 1 percent this month, the most since February, as comparable global benchmarks suffered losses. Slumping oil prices, wild gyrations in Chinese equities and concerns that the U.S. Federal Reserve is moving closer to raising interest rates reversed a European rally that had been triggered by improvements in the Greek debt crisis. Investors withdrew $1.4 billion from high-yield bond funds globally in the week through July 29, the most in four weeks, Bank of America Corp. said in a report on Friday.
  • China Auto Sales Will Tank if Stocks Enter Bear Market. China’s vehicle sales may post its first annual decline in more than 17 years if the stock market continues to slide, according to the China Automobile Dealers Association. Vehicle sales will tank if an equity rout continues, and expand 1 percent to 2 percent this year if stock prices stabilize and the economy recovers, said Luo Lei, deputy secretary-general of industry trade group. “A stock market plunge hurts consumer confidence,” Luo said in a phone interview Friday. “People wouldn’t want to spend on cars when the market keeps on declining. Dealers are sacrificing their margins and giving out big incentives to help attract buyers.”
  • Brazil Real Extends Worst Monthly Drop Since March on Fiscal Woe. The real fell to a 12-year low and extended its biggest monthly decline since March as budget reports added to concern that Brazil will be lowered to junk. Standard & Poor’s cited a slowing economy and fiscal turmoil Tuesday when it changed its outlook to negative on the nation’s credit rating, already at the lowest level of investment grade. The central bank’s decision the next day to avoid further increases in interest rates limited the desirability of the nation’s assets to global investors looking for higher yields. The real dropped 1.3 to 3.4155 per dollar at 11:53 a.m. in Sao Paulo, the weakest level on a closing basis since March 2003. It has fallen 9 percent in July, the worst performance among 31 major currencies after the ruble.
  • Asian Currencies in Steepest Drop in 10 Months as Growth Slows. Asian currencies weakened the most in 10 months in July as slowing economic growth and the prospect of higher U.S. interest rates spurred outflows. South Korea’s won led declines, falling 4.7 percent in its biggest monthly drop since 2011. Thailand’s baht lost 4.2 percent and Taiwan’s dollar depreciated 1.9 percent. The Bloomberg-JPMorgan Asia Dollar Index, which tracks the region’s 10 major currencies excluding Japan’s yen, fell 1.4 percent. Taiwanese gross domestic product increased by the least since 2012 last quarter, a report showed on Friday, and expansion in South Korea was the slowest in more than two years. A gauge of Chinese manufacturing fell to a 15-month low in July, fueling concern a slowdown in Asia’s largest economy hasn’t bottomed out yet.
  • Russian Ruble, Oil Double Down on Economic Drag. (video)
  • Why Latin America's Economy Won't Grow This Year. (video)
  • Puerto Rico Muni Index Falls to Six-Year Low as Default Looms. An index that tracks the performance of Puerto Rico’s municipal debt fell to a six-year low with the commonwealth on the verge of defaulting on some of its obligations for the first time. The Standard & Poor’s Municipal Bond Puerto Rico index closed at 151.97 Thursday, the least since the wake of the global financial crisis in July 2009. The commonwealth’s Public Finance Corp. will likely fail to make $58 million in bond payments due Aug. 1, the first default since Puerto Rico was ceded to the U.S. following the Spanish-American War. Government officials say they can’t make the payment because the legislature didn’t appropriate the funds last month for the current fiscal year.
  • European Stocks Cap Best Monthly Advance in Five Amid Earnings. European stocks were little changed amid earnings reports, completing their biggest monthly rally since February. Miners and energy companies fell as commodities extended a monthly plunge. Spain’s CaixaBank SA dropped 2.4 percent after cutting its net interest income growth forecast for 2015. BNP Paribas SA climbed 2.9 percent as France’s largest bank swung to its biggest quarterly profit in more than three years. The Stoxx Europe 600 Index gained less than 0.1 percent to 396.37 at the close of trading.
  • The U.S. Economy Is on Track to Finish a Decade Without Significant Growth. It would take a miracle for growth to reach 3 percent this year, marking a decade without it. The U.S. economy keeps chugging ahead, more like a tortoise than a hare. At this rate, it won't be anywhere near where economists expect it to be at the end of the year.  Gross domestic product expanded at a 2.3 percent annualized rate in the second quarter, according to Commerce Department figures published Thursday. While that was an improvement over the 0.6 percent pace in the first three months of the year, it was less than economists had forecast. The new figures all but assure GDP for the year yet again will fail to reach the 3-percent mark, the pace economists generally say is needed in order for the average American to really feel it. ``This has been a uniquely slow period of growth that's delivered very little for low- and middle-income households,'' said Jared Bernstein, a senior fellow at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities in Washington and former chief economist for Vice President Joe Biden. ``We need to grow faster and more equitably.''   
  • Exit From Leveraged-Credit Funds Seen as Sign of Things to Come. When you use borrowed money to make a bet, you can win big and you can lose big, as some investors in closed-end debt funds are finding out right now. Shares of such funds are plunging way below the value of their underlying assets, with the biggest discounts since the U.S. financial crisis. Traders seem to just want to get this stuff off their books, even at a painful price. At best, these funds are just a small corner of the $39 trillion U.S. debt market and their suffering is perhaps a temporary phenomenon that doesn’t reflect broader problems. At worst, it’s a harbinger of a more significant selloff ahead in debt markets that have swelled to unprecedented sizes on the heels of the Federal Reserve’s stimulus.

Bear Radar

Style Underperformer:
  • Large-Cap Value -.09%
Sector Underperformers:
  • 1) Energy -1.03% 2) Oil Service -1.02% 3) I-Banks -.75%
Stocks Falling on Unusual Volume:
Stocks With Unusual Put Option Activity:
  • 1) OCN 2) LNKD 3) WFM 4) CVX 5) HEDJ
Stocks With Most Negative News Mentions:
  • 1) QLGC 2) LINE 3) OCN 4) XOM 5) CVX

Bull Radar

Style Outperformer:
  • Small-Cap Growth +.1.24%
Sector Outperformers:
  • 1) Airlines +1.89% 2) Telecom +1.68% 3) Biotech +1.61%
Stocks Rising on Unusual Volume:
Stocks With Unusual Call Option Activity:
  • 1) OCN 2) EXPE 3) CNC 4) EA 5) ZNGA
Stocks With Most Positive News Mentions:
  • 1) AMGN 2) EXPE 3) RMD 4) YRCW 5) VNO

Morning Market Internals

NYSE Composite Index:

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Friday Watch

Evening Headlines 
  • Stocks Turmoil Leaves Chinese Investors in Nowhere-to-Run Bind. Wei Lili is running out of investment options. Apartment prices in her city of Wuhan are beyond her reach even after a recent property slump, and the volatile stock market is too great a risk. “It takes more than a million yuan to buy a flat, and stocks are like a roller coaster -- they are too soul-wrenching for me,” said Wei, 52, a government worker in the central Chinese city. She’s lost almost half of a 30,000 yuan ($4,800) investment in stocks, she said, declining to elaborate. The party may be ending for Chinese investors who have seen housing prices boom over most of the past decade and gained from wagers on everything from surging commodity prices to industrial-company loans. With the stock market in a funk, lackluster prospects for an oversupplied housing market and interest rates falling, savers like Wei face a new era of lower investment returns should the recent equities rout persist.
  • China ETF Heads to Record Monthly Drop Amid Mainland Stock Rout. The biggest U.S. exchange-traded fund tracking mainland Chinese stocks fell for the second time this week, heading for the biggest monthly loss since its was started in 2013 amid concern Chinese policy makers will fail to stem a selloff in the A-share market. Investors in the Deutsche X-trackers Harvest CSI 300 China A-Shares ETF are enduring the widest price swings on record and have pulled more than $274 million from the fund’s assets in the past four weeks as the government implemented unprecedented intervention measures to stem a rout that wiped out $4 trillion in market value. Historical 30-day volatility in the ETF surged to 96.75 percent on Thursday as the fund dropped 3 percent to $39.83 in New York.
  • Aussie Wage Challenge: Find Five Bartenders for Each Lost Miner. The prospect of escalating job losses in Australia’s mining industry looms as an increasing strain on the nation’s economy, with new jobs paying a fraction of those that are disappearing. A survey of 50 mining executives found 80 percent plan to cut workers in the next 12 months, up from 50 percent a year ago, according to results released Wednesday by Newport Consulting. While services jobs -- helped by tourism -- are rising, the problem for consumption growth is that it takes five bartenders to make up the compensation for each lost miner. 
  • Taiwan Economy Grows Least Since 2012 as China Hurts Exports. Taiwan’s economy grew at the slowest pace in three years as exports collapsed amid weaker global demand and rising competition from regional rivals. Gross domestic product rose 0.64 percent in the three months through June from a year earlier, according to preliminary data released by the statistics bureau Friday. That compares with a pace of 3.37 percent in the previous quarter, and is lower than all estimates in a Bloomberg survey whose median was 2.55 percent. 
  • China’s Stocks Extend Slump in Worst Monthly Decline Since 2009. China’s stocks fell, with the benchmark index heading for its worst monthly drop in almost six years, as the government struggled to rekindle investor interest amid a $3.5 trillion rout. The Shanghai Composite Index slid 1.6 percent to 3,647.39 at 9:35 a.m. local time, making it the world’s worst performer this month with a 15 percent slump. Energy stocks led declines before the release of manufacturing data on Saturday.
  • Asia Stocks Climb to Pare July Drop as Fed Outlook Boosts Dollar. Asian stocks advanced, trimming a third monthly loss amid signs the steepest rout in commodities since 2011 has been arrested. The dollar maintained gains as speculation firms over the timing for U.S. rate increases. The MSCI Asia Pacific Index rose a third day, adding 0.3 percent by 10:38 a.m. in Tokyo and paring its July drop to 3.4 percent.
Wall Street Journal: 
  • Investigators Face Pressure to Confirm MH370 Link. Plane debris and suitcase found on remote island set to be analyzed in France. Accident investigators appeared tantalizingly close to determining whether a piece of plane debris belongs to Malaysia Airlines Flight 370, but still faced a long and complex process in trying to solve one of the world’s greatest aviation mysteries.
  • Hillary’s Friends in High Places. Everyone—from her aides to the State and Justice departments—is bending over backward to protect her. ‘Friends of Bill” was a 1990s Washington catchphrase, shorthand for President Clinton’s favored inner circle. His wife, it turns out, has a far bigger fan club. “Friends of Hillary”—the people looking out for her welfare, and benefiting in turn—seem to occupy the highest echelons of government and business.
Fox News:
Zero Hedge:
NY Post:
  • LinkedIn's(LNKD) revenue beat fails to connect with investors. LinkedIn Corp, operator of the biggest social networking site for professionals, reported a better-than-expected 33 percent rise in quarterly revenue on Thursday, driven by strong growth in its business serving recruiters. LinkedIn's shares were down 3.9 percent in after-hours trading, however, as investors focused on the company's widening losses and an underwhelming full-year revenue forecast.
  • Expedia(EXPE) beats Wall Street view, shares rise. Expedia Inc on Thursday posted a second-quarter profit above analysts' expectations and announced a larger dividend as travel bookings grow, sending its shares up more than 7 percent in after-market trade. 
  • Amgen(AMGN) profit tops Street view, boosts full-year forecast. Amgen Inc on Thursday reported higher-than-expected second-quarter profit and revenue, helped by strong sales of its Enbrel rheumatoid arthritis drug and cost cutting, and the company raised its full-year forecasts. Amgen's shares rose 1.8 percent in extended trading.
Financial Times: 
  • Corporate giants sound profits alarm over China slowdown. Some of the world’s largest companies have sounded the alarm about the slowdown in the Chinese economy, warning that weaker growth would hit profits in the second half of the year. Car companies such as PSA Peugeot Citro├źn, Audi and Ford have slashed growth forecasts while industrial goods groups such as Caterpillar and Siemens have all spoken out on the negative impact of China.
Shanghai Securities News: 
  • China Asks Insurers to Avoid Net Sales of Equities. China Insurance Regulatory Commission asked insurers to try their best to avoid net sales of equities in near future, citing a person from an insurer.
South China Morning Post:
  • Foreign Short Selling 'Overblown' by China, Markit Says. Accusations of foreigners short selling shares is "overblown" by Chinese market regulators and not the cause of a recent rout in the stock market, citing financial data co. Markit analyst Relte Stephen Schutte as saying. Official data shows minimal short selling of individual shares with shorting of domestic ETFs at only 1.2% of total domestic ETFs under management, Schutte said.
Evening Recommendations 
  • None of note
Night Trading
  • Asian equity indices are -.5% to +.5% on average.
  • Asia Ex-Japan Investment Grade CDS Index 110.75 +2.0 basis points.
  • Asia Pacific Sovereign CDS Index 62.5 +1.25 basis points.
  • S&P 500 futures -.07%.
  • NASDAQ 100 futures -.11%.

Earnings of Note
  • (AXL)/.71
  • (AON)/1.30
  • (MT)/-.04
  • (CBOE)/.50
  • (CVX)/1.15
  • (DSX)/-.18
  • (XOM)/1.11
  • (HMC)/84.22
  • (ITT)/.59
  • (LM)/1.13
  • (NWL)/.62
  • (PSX)/1.81
  • (RCL)/.73
  • (STX)/.66
  • (TYC)/.56
  • (WY)/.20
Economic Releases
8:30 am EST
  • The 2Q Employment Cost Index is estimated to rise +.6% versus a +.7% gain in 1Q. 
9:00 am EST
  • ISM Milwaukee for July is estimated to rise to 50.0 versus 46.55 in June.
9:45 am EST
  • Chicago Purchasing Manager Index for July is estimated to rise to 50.8 versus 49.4 in June.
10:00 am EST
  • Final Univ. of Mich. Consumer Sentiment for July is estimated at 94.0 versus a prior estimate of 93.3.
Upcoming Splits
  • None of note
Other Potential Market Movers
  • The Eurozone CPI report, Eurozone Unemployment report and the China Manufacturing PMI report could also impact trading today.
BOTTOM LINE: Asian indices are mostly higher, boosted by commodity and consumer shares in the region. I expect US stocks to open modestly lower and to rally into the afternoon, finishing mixed. The Portfolio is 50% net long heading into the day.