Wednesday, April 25, 2007

Another Banner Day as Dow Crashes through 13,000

Wednesday was just another day on Wall Street in this exceptionally energetic earnings season. Apple reported outstanding numbers and stocks soared on a wave of unbridled optimism.

It's becoming so routine to the point of boredom, just watching everything go up, up, up all the time, day after day, la dee da...

If you're in the right stocks it's a marvelous time to be invested. The question is why, if all is so damn wonderful in the world of high finance and corporate profitability, did only 22% of respondents to a new NBC/Wall St. Journal poll say that America was moving in the right direction. There seems to be a high level of dissatisfaction afoot, but none of it could be found on Wall Street.

Still, the mood of the public raises an interesting question. Are these anonymous poll respondents seeing something we're missing? Are the profits on Wall Street more fleeting and illusory than we have been led to believe? Or are the investment returns isolated to an emerging, small class of wealthy individuals who reap most of the gain from soaring stocks?

Food for thought, which we're not going to bite on right now.

Dow 13,089.89 +135.95; NASDAQ 2,547.89 +23.35; S&P 500 1,495.42 +15.01; NYSE Composite 9,746.57 +98.07

Apple was the key driver for the day, reporting profits of $770 million, or 87 cents per share, up from $410 million, or 47 cents per share, in the year-ago period. The stock breached the $100 mark on the news, up 2.11 on the session. Analysts were looking for 64 cents per share, so they, like everyone else, were absolutely shocked at Apple's incredible performance.

Corporate news took precedence over the scourge of the street, crude oil, which jumped back up to $65.84/bbl., up $1.26 on the NY Mercantile Exchange. In what continues to be a counter-trade, gold and silver both lost ground again, though gold at $387.40 and silver at $13.90 are close to the higher end of the range. There may be some consolidation at this level, anticipating a break out. However, there have been a number of false flags like this, so it could just turn out to be more of the same as no catalyst seems capable of taking the metals to new highs.

Speaking of new highs, there were an astounding 602 of them, versus only 69 new lows, the bulk of those on the NASDAQ.

Volume was exceptionally strong, one of the top 5 volume days this year and advancing issues drubbed decliners by nearly a 2-1 margin.

The question for tomorrow and the succeeding sessions leading up to the May 9 FOMC meeting is, how high is up?

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