Thursday, June 9, 2011

Well, We All Knew This Was Coming

Nothing, in the world of the financial markets, moves in a straight line, so it was only a matter of time that the stock indices would cease falling and post a day of positive, "green shoots" results, and today was that day.

Call it whatever you like - PPT manipulation, dead cat bounce, oversold conditions, snap-back rally - it's nothing out of the norm for markets to do these kinds of things, and, taking a word from Fed Chaiman Ben Bernanke, it is likely a "transitory" event, like the wind, which passes on and blows in another time and place.

Even with today's sudden upsurge reversal of fortune, volume was horrid and stocks finished well off their highs, with widespread selling occurring in the final hour. That's likely because today's move was highly orchestrated by the usual suspects, with aid from the Fed (remember, QE2 isn't over yet). Bonds were flipped and turned into stock purchases, mostly in the very same names that control 80% of the trading on the exchanges. You know the names; no need to repeat them here.

Getting right down to it, after sustaining six straight days of losses, this was nothing about which to get excited, that's for sure. For instance, even factoring in today's gains, the Dow is still off a whopping 445 points since May 31, and 686 points since the top on April 29 (12,810).

Anyone suggesting that it is anything other than a one-day event should be barred from ever commenting on stocks or financial issues, in perpetuity. Selling stocks will resume sooner, rather than later.

Dow 12,124.43, +75.49 (0.63%)
NASDAQ 2,684.87, +9.49 (0.35%)
S&P 500 1,289.00, +9.44 (0.74%)
NYSE Composite 8,149.65, +68.30 (0.85%)

Internals were slightly improved, with advancing issues topping decliners, 3538-2116. The NASDAQ was good for 26 new highs and 119 new lows; the NYSE saw 31 new highs and 70 new lows, making our combined reading 57 new highs and 189 new lows, a fifth straight session with the lows leading the way.

Volume? Come on, now.

NASDAQ Volume 1,686,693,375
NYSE Volume 3,489,525,750

Over in the commodity space, the aberration known as crude oil futures gained $1.19, to $101.93. There is no good reason for the price of oil to be this high. A stable price of around 470-80 per barrel would be sufficient to satisfy all parties without putting unnecessary pressure on end-product consumers. If there's any one thing that will keep a slow economy from improving, it is high fuel or food prices and we have them both. Of course, the government, usually quick to impose its will wherever it pleases, does nothing about this. To put it simply, our elected officials at all levels have ceased representing the people of America long ago. In a few words, THEY SUCK.

Oddly enough, gold bugs saw right through the rise in equities and bought more, bringing the price up by $6.60, to $1544.40. Gold is still up 25% on the year. Difficult to argue with those kinds of returns. Silver was also bid higher, up 75 cents, to $37.55.

Tomorrow, the weekend. Thank goodness.

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