Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Stocks on Roller Coaster Ride with Greek Vote Looming; Greenspan Calls Euro a Failure

As mentioned in this space yesterday, the day-trading hedge funds and bank-owned brokerages (please, bring back Glass-Steagall) booked profits early in the day and went net short, their nifty algos doing the heavy lifting, as stocks drifted early and sank in the afternoon, making the market pulse for the week, down, up, down.

Today's action had all the earmarks of a seminal decline, with no oomph in the morning and a swift, brutal selloff which developed some serious downside momentum after 2:00 pm EDT.

While there was little to no news out of Europe to affect US stocks besides the downgrade of Spain from B to CCC+ by ratings firm Egan Jones, there was plenty right here on the home front.

JP Morgan Chase (JPM) CEO Jamie Dimon testified before the Senate Banking committee concerning his firm's $2 billion trading loss, though that made-for-TV event was little more than a dog-and-pony show, as most - if not all - of the committee members were recipients of sizable campaign contributions from the financial interests represented by the TBTF Wall Street banks, JPM a prominent donor to campaign slush funds of both parties.

Former Federal Reserve Chairman, Alan Greenspan, made some noise about the crisis in Euroland, saying that while the Euro was a "noble experiment" it is being proven ultimately a failure.

The consummate financial criminal enabler, Greenspan was an ardent advocate for repeal of Glass-Steagal beck in 1987, according to this flashback article by American Banker.

While market participants digested the day's disturbing headlines and news stories, stocks exhibited the kind of behavior befitting a system on the verge of breaking down, though outright panic still appears to be just a glimmer on the horizon.

Breadth was on the negative side for the day and new lows outpaced new highs for the second session consecutively. Oil continued its descent, continuing in bear territory following the absurd February run-up, while the fear trade in gold pressed higher, though silver continues to be suppressed, mostly by Blythe Masters, a protege of JPM's Dimon.

As the week progresses, however, a rebalancing of the S&P 500 and quadruple-witching of options and futures on Friday should determine the tenor of trading for the balance.

Dow 12,496.38, -77.42 (0.62%)
NASDAQ 2,818.61, -24.46 (0.86%)
S&P 500 1,314.88, -9.30 (0.70%)
NYSE Composite 7,506.29, -51.52 (0.68%)
NASDAQ Volume 1,528,772,500
NYSE Volume 3,363,560,750
Combined NYSE & NASDAQ Advance - Decline: 1747-3744
Combined NYSE & NASDAQ New highs - New lows: 75-112
WTI crude oil: 82.62, -0.70
Gold: 1,619.40, +5.60
Silver: 28.94, -0.01

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