Friday, August 30, 2013

Stocks End Worst Month Since May 2012; Odds on Syria Strike; Despite Kerry Rhetoric, Still no Proof

We end the month of August on an oddly-down note, since Secretary of State John Kerry made an impassioned speech about the need to punish the Assad regime in Syria for alleged chemical strikes against its own people, but still did not offer any substantive proof that those loyal to the embattled president of Syria were responsible for the attacks.

Odd, it was, that stocks did not rally in patriotic fervor over going to war, insofar as any action the president may take against Syria is entirely without authorization from congress and decidedly unconstitutional. But, in the politics of the new American dictatorship under president Obama, such trifles as the War Powers Act and the constitution - to say nothing of the American public's 91% disapproval of any action being taken against Syria - count for nil when the stakes are so politically high.

Thus, we present the odds for the timing of missile strikes - "tailored" ones, using the president's own vernacular:
Friday (prior to 12:00 pm EDT): 7-5
Saturday: even
Sunday: 4-1
Monday: 7-1
No strike: 40-1

Stocks ended the most brutal month since May of 2012, spurred to the downside first, by talk of tapering by the Fed and general fear, second, by talk of military action from the Obama administration. The time for talk being essentially over, it is expected that Damascus will be in flames shortly, the Fed will nip about $10-15 billion off its monthly bond-buying binge by the end of September and stocks will continue their trajectory to the downside.

On the day, the Russell 2000 and Dow Transports were mashed fairly substantially, and, despite some fierce tape-painting in the final five minutes of trading (about 40 Dow points), stocks finished the week with their third loss in the past five sessions.

For the week - in which the Dow closed lower for the fourth straight week (first time this year) - the Dow Industrials were down 200.20 points, the NASDAQ shed 67.92 and the S&P 500 was nipped for 30.53 points, a pretty severe decline.

Microsoft (MSFT) was the only Dow component to finish positive for the month.

Now we await the weekend's entertainment: College Football and Bombing Syria.

What could be better?

Dow 14,810.31, -30.64 (0.21%)
NASDAQ 3,589.87, -30.43 (0.84%)
S&P 500 1,632.97, -5.20 (0.32%)
NYSE Composite 9,270.70, -45.12 (0.48%)
NASDAQ Volume 1,229,340,500
NYSE Volume 3,001,316,500
Combined NYSE & NASDAQ Advance - Decline: 1822-4668
Combined NYSE & NASDAQ New highs - New lows: 55-73
WTI crude oil: 107.65, -1.15
Gold: 1,396.10, -16.80
Silver: 23.46, -0.627

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Confused? Don't Worry. Everybody Else Is, Too

Ours is a complex world, and there's probably nothing more complex than the intricate workings of today's financial markets.

The news flow of the day involved nothing much of note moving forward on the Syrian issue, a second reading of second quarter GDP (the new, vastly inflated version) of 2.5%, lower initial unemployment claims and the laughable nationwide "strike" by fast food workers demanding a doubling of their wages, from roughly the minimum wage of $7.25 to about $15 per hour.

Here's a few clues for the burger flippers of the world: a) you'd be better off on welfare; b) McDonald's, Burger King and Wendy's aren't going to double your pay; c) your new status as part-time employees is thanks to your hero, president Obama and his health care reform package; d)moving out of your parents' home and having a kid out of wedlock were probably bad ideas.

While we're on the advice meme for today, for the President: don't do it.
For congress: impeachment is still an option.
For Vlad Putin: Keep doing what you're doing.
For gold and silver bugs: buy or hold.
For stock holders: SELL!
and, for Miley Cyrus haters: Get a life. Stuff happens.

Meanwhile, stocks rallied hard in the morning and sold off hard in the final hour, similar to yesterday's action and a clearly bearish trading pattern. Bonds sold off, early, then rallied, sending yields up, then down.

Oil fell sharply.

If none of this makes any sense in a macro kind of way, that's probably the way it's supposed to be. As somebody very wise once said, "if it were easy, we'd all be rich." Ain't that the truth.

Friday is the final day of trading for the month, which really doesn't mean much of anything, except that, being August, expect some volume to return to the stock market the first week of September. Overall, it looks like a sure down month for the Dow and S&P, though the NASDAQ has bucked the trend somewhat, falling only 0.1% - basically dead even - for the month.

Since labor Day is fast upon us, here's a quote to ponder: "From Each According to His Ability, To Each According to His Need" -- The Tramp's Speech from Ayn Rand's "Atlas Shrugged."

We may or may not be back tomorrow, depending largely upon global events, whether the market moves are large or small and whether the fish are biting.

Dow 14,840.95, +16.44 (0.11%)
NASDAQ 3,620.30, +26.95 (0.75%)
S&P 500 1,638.17, +3.21 (0.20%)
NYSE Composite 9,315.83, +6.75 (0.07%)
NASDAQ Volume 1,288,533,125
NYSE Volume 2,802,161,750
Combined NYSE & NASDAQ Advance - Decline: 4291-2233
Combined NYSE & NASDAQ New highs - New lows: 88-53
WTI crude oil: 108.80, -1.30
Gold: 1,412.90, -5.90
Silver: 24.09, -0.301

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Energy Stocks Push Dow Higher in Listless Session

In terms of the declines from the past two days, today's paltry gains were about 20% of the pullback, so technically, Wednesday's session was nothing much more than a knee-jerk, relief rally with little follow through.

Energy stocks, ExxonMobil (XOM) and Chevron (CVX) in particular, were responsible for roughly one half of the gains on the Dow Industrials, and there was concerted selling into the close, with stocks giving back about a third of the day's gains into the closing bell, a negative for trading conviction.

WTI crude oil closed above $110 a barrel for the first time since May, 2011, a direct result of the saber-rattling going on over Syria. Gold and silver took a breather, probably for some serious profit-taking, as the precious metals have been on a real tear over the past two weeks, bounding off their lows to make multi-month highs.

Volume was typically dismal, as is usually the case in August, especially the last week of the month, as were are witnessing.

News flow and economic data have been largely negative. Today's -1.3% downturn in pending home sales for July was another sign that the housing market continues to cool and may turn into a chill as the peak selling season is passing quickly.

Talk was centered on when the US would strike Syria, rather than "if," and how that might affect the Fed's decision over tapering bond purchases in September or delay it until tensions subside. Such banter is the stuff of markets, but largely foolish speculation and ignorant of the underlying trends in the economy, which are weak, at best, and slumping, at worst.

Overall, it was a nothing session, with most traders either on hold until a Syria assault becomes reality or on holiday until after Labor Day.

Gains were minimal and may prove to be fleeting.

Dow 14,824.51, +48.38 (0.33%)
NASDAQ 3,593.35, +14.83 (0.41%)
S&P 500 1,634.96, +4.48 (0.27%)
NYSE Composite 9,311.30, +23.19 (0.25%)
NASDAQ Volume 1,318,517,250
NYSE Volume 2,873,515,250
Combined NYSE & NASDAQ Advance - Decline: 3655-2890
Combined NYSE & NASDAQ New highs - New lows: 59-88
WTI crude oil: 110.10, +1.09
Gold: 1,418.80, -1.40
Silver: 24.39, -0.26

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Hard Times for America and the World; Harder Choices for Americans

Today, we stand at an important crossroad of history.

The United States is about to make one of the greatest strategic blunders of all time, even after lessons should have been learned from military misadventures in Afghanistan and Iraq.

With support from congressmen and congresswomen from both sides of the aisle, the current administration is preparing to plunge the United States into another Middle East military conflict, centered on the civil war - that is none of our business and serves no national interest - in Syria.

The first panacea for a mismanaged nation is inflation of the currency; the second is war. Both bring a temporary prosperity; both bring a permanent ruin. But both are the refuge of political and economic opportunists.
-- Ernest Hemingway

Recently-appointed Secretary of State, John Kerry, kicked off the relentless banging of war drums late Monday afternoon, with a press conference, highlighting America's "undeniable" evidence that the regime of Bashir Assad had used chemical warfare against its own citizens last week.

Kerry, one of the richest politicians in the world thanks to his marriage to Heinz heiress, Teresa Heinz in 1995, spoke of "additional intelligence" which would indicate that Assad was behind the chemical attack that killed hundreds in a Damascus suburb. Estimates had ranged to over 1000, but recent estimates fall between 150 and 355, which is the number of deaths quoted by Doctors without Borders.

Kerry said that this additional evidence would be released in coming days. In the meantime, the US has expressed concern that UN inspectors have not been given unfettered access to the attack site, which is contrary to published reports that the Assad government is complying with UN requests.

Additionally, Kerry made a comment, supposedly directed at Russia, but ostensibly aimed at anyone who believes the chemical attack was a "false flag" engineered by CIA or other undercover agents under direction from the United States, in order to heat up the situation and foment conditions for war in Syria.

Kerry said, "Anyone who can claim that an attack of this staggering scale can be contrived or fabricated needs to check their conscience and their own moral compass." However, Assad has repeatedly and steadfastly denied that his government was behind the attack. Besides, Assad has been seen as winning the civil war against home-grown rebels and outside agitators from the Muslim Brotherhood and groups associated with Al Queda, so there was no direct benefit for the use of chemical warfare, especially since President Obama said months ago that such use would "cross a red line."

In Kerry's "moral compass" statement, in response to words from the Kremlin that the situation mirrored that in Iraq, centered around non-existent weapons of mass destruction (WMDs) that led the US into war 10 years ago, lies the seed of disingenuousness.

In more genteel times, such as prior to 2001, such comments would not even be given an airing, but, since 9/11, and even before, the scenario has been set. Russian leader, Vladimir Putin, knows exactly which button to push in order to riase the ire of the US, and he is pushing them. As far as "strong evidence suggesting" (a term Kerry, and compatriots like Donald Rumsfeld, Dick Cheney and Colin Powell like to use) is concerned, there's a recurring pattern emerging out of Washington DC, starting with the Gulf of Tonkin incident which plunged us into the Vietnam War, to the events of 9/11/2001, around which skeptics still abound, to the Iraq invasion based upon what is now called "flawed intelligence," to the present condition in Syria.

It seems like every time the economy is in trouble (read on, there's more of that to come) or the US needs to exploit the resources of a weaker nation (Egypt and Libya come immediately and recently to mind), there's some "event" that brings out the president, the Secretary of State, various members of congress, especially war-mongers John McCain and Lindsay Graham rattling the sabers like medieval warlords.

The US is once again on the same path, with the media lapping it up and spitting it out to the trusting American public. These are truly the hardest of times, and the hardest of decisions face the American public just ahead. Will they continue to support these elected leaders who act more like psychopathic killers than men and women of judgement and compassion, or will Americans stand up and resist, though protests in the recent past have gone for naught because the media has been purchased in whole by the banking-political cartel and will not give protests their proper airing.

It is inconceivable in this day and age of an open internet and mass communications that governments be allowed to run roughshod over a country's constitution and its people, but that is precisely the path America is upon, and there seems to be little to apprehend the runaway war machine.

As for the market reaction to the beating war drums - or, maybe more precisely, the market condition aside from them - stocks have taken a severe beating over the first two sessions of the final week of August, with the NASDAQ in freefall, taking its biggest loss of the year on Tuesday, while the Dow, NYSE Composite and S&P 500 continue to plunge well below their 50-day moving averages. Meanwhile, the WTI oil price has spiked to six-month highs, gold and silver have returned to their traditional status as safe havens and are experiencing a bull market, and the recent rise in interest rates has been temporarily reversed.

While it may be easy to blame "war tensions" for the recent price declines, there's much, much more to the story, including whether or not the Federal Reserve will cut back its bond buying program (tapering) in September, the upcoming budget and debt ceiling debates - also in September and October - a potential collapse of the Italian government, a slowdown in housing, continuing high unemployment and the effects of Obamacare on the entire labor and health care complex.

Indications are already in place that the markets are taking a severe turn, possibly signaling an end to the 54-month-long bull run since March 2009. The Dow has lost nearly 900 points this month alone, ending in the red 13 of its last 17 sessions. The advance-decline line continues to deteriorate, today reaching a level of more than 4:1 losers to winners, and new lows slammed new highs yet again, a continuing, troublesome trend.

Weeks and months ahead could well become a turning point for the country, though there's a strong sentiment that the federal government, deeply in bed with the Wall Street bankers and global elite will continue a glide path to insolvency, decimating the middle class from both sides, by the rapacious practices of the upper class ("one percenters") while keeping the dregs of society quelled with bread and circuses (food stamps and football).

America has reached a greater incline on the slippery slope to serfdom and tyranny. This is a dangerous time, and each American must examine his or her conscience and decide which course of action is best for themselves and their families. These will not be easy decisions, but momentous even in singularity. America is being ripped apart by the powers at the top and there may be no reasonable means of stopping the carnage already underway.

Unfolding events in Syria and the wider Middle East, along with the operational side of the federal government may present the nation with veritable breaking points and an irreversible trajectory.

Dow 14,776.13, -170.33 (1.14%)
NASDAQ 3,578.52, -79.05 (2.16%)
S&P 500 1,630.48, -26.30 (1.59%)
NYSE Composite 9,288.11, -144.40 (1.53%)
NASDAQ Volume 1,570,917,625
NYSE Volume 3,629,879,250
Combined NYSE & NASDAQ Advance - Decline: 1236-5415
Combined NYSE & NASDAQ New highs - New lows: 43-106
WTI crude oil: 109.01, +3.09
Gold: 1,420.20, +27.10
Silver: 24.65, +0.641

Friday, August 23, 2013

Friday Wrap: New Home Sales Plummet; Stocks Thin Trade Up; Joe Cocker's Response?

Where we are, it's a beautiful summer day. Crickets are chirping, bees buzzing, birds singing, everything is green and red and gold, warm and wonderful.

Speaking of gold, what was that spike just after 10:00 am, all about? Oh, housing. Yes. New home sales fell by 13% in July, due - according to most usually-misinformed experts - mainly to rising interest rates. It was the lowest level of sales in nine months. Additionally, June figures were revised dramatically lower.

Well, OK, so new homes, already overvalued and, like new cars, worth less than what you paid (and will be paying for 30 years) the moment you walk in the front door for the first time, aren't such a bargain anymore. But why does that affect the price of gold? And, concomitantly, why did interest rates dip at the same time?

Maybe because the economy isn't as good as the doves at the Fed would like us to believe. They still think there's a good chance that they can stop stimulating the economy in September, or maybe October, or, or, or... maybe some day, without crashing the market. And that leads some people to run for safety, in things they can actually touch and feel and believe are undervalued, like gold (and silver, which was up big again today), or to bonds, which are traditionally safer investments than stocks (we'll reserve judgement on that one for now).

Stocks were higher at the close today, but, despite today's thinly-traded silliness, the Dow ended the week down 71 points, the NASDAQ (even being closed half the day yesterday) was still up 55 points (bubble?), and the S&P gained 7.62. Pretty much, the week was a non-event. That's three down weeks in a row for the Dow, and a little bit of a break for the S&P and NASDAQ, down the previous two weeks.

As for the Fed, all they need is some solid economic data that shows the US (and by proxy, the global) economy is healing nicely, or "recovering" as they say, but, like a wounded patient, recovery is an empirical event, one which can be seen, not hocus-pocus numerology or fantasy ripped from the headlines. It is a phenomenon which can be observed. The gal with the broken leg takes off the cast and walks again. The guy who had a heart attack can do jumping jacks or go jogging. That's what recovery looks like.

If the US economy was a patient with an illness, it would have been flat on its back, probably on an operating table, back in 2008-09. Since then, it has been pumped full of fluids, fitted with prosthetics and taken from critical condition to "under observation." Take away the fake limbs and it can't walk or feed itself. Cut off the fluids and the patient will atrophy and die.

That's why the Fed can't taper in September. The patient is still too weak and has been propped up by artificial means (QE and ZIRP). Take those away and the patient will relapse, but, the Fed may give it a go anyway, despite strong empiricial evidence that it is the wrong course of action. That's what the Fed does best - hard to believe from people who are supposed to be smart; they usually make bad moves.

In the end, there will be pain, despite or in response to whatever the Federal reserve does. The economy remains weak and may actually be getting weaker. If they start trimming their bond purchases, it most certainly will not improve, prompting what we think may be the appropriate response for all of us, courtesy of Joe Cocker, from Woodstock, way, way, way back in 1969:

Dow 15,010.36, +46.62 (0.31%)
NASDAQ 3,657.79, +19.08 (0.52%)
S&P 500 1,663.47, +6.51 (0.39%)
NYSE Composite 9,474.75, +48.97 (0.52%)
NASDAQ Volume 1,453,646,250
NYSE Volume 2,586,104,750
Combined NYSE & NASDAQ Advance - Decline: 4141-2401
Combined NYSE & NASDAQ New highs - New lows: 156-52
WTI crude oil: 106.42, +1.39
Gold: 1,395.80, +25.00
Silver: 23.74, +0.703

Thursday, August 22, 2013

FUBAR: The Day NASDAQ Went Dark

Shortly after noon, at about 12:20 pm EDT, the NASDAQ shut down trading operations. There would be no trading of any "securities" (ha, ha, funny word) on the NASDAQ platform until further notice.

Some traders were visibly asleep.
From a public relations perspective, the NASDAQ itself was officially quiet during the outage, which turned out to be not much of a big deal. Stocks actually went higher after the NAZ re-opened at 3:25 pm ET, with just 35 minutes left in the session. It was learned that the President was informed of the shutdown while he was three-putting the eighth hole at Oak Hill Country Club in Rochester, NY.

The day ended in typical dead-cat bounce fashion, with a slight selloff into the close, but stocks generally higher, ending a six-day losing streak for the Dow, but ushering in an era of infrastructure breakdown with a three-hour closure of the NASDAQ.

And you want your money - your investments for your future, for retirement - in these markets?

America is becoming a third world nation.

Welcome to Cameroon, my friends.

Dow 14,963.74, +66.19 (0.44%)
NASDAQ 3,638.71, +38.92 (1.08%)
S&P 500 1,656.96, +14.16 (0.86%)
NYSE Composite 9,425.04, +85.66 (0.92%)
NASDAQ Volume 884,157,625
NYSE Volume 2,573,636,500
Combined NYSE & NASDAQ Advance - Decline: 5235-1326
Combined NYSE & NASDAQ New highs - New lows: 144-93
WTI crude oil: 105.03, +1.18
Gold: 1,370.80. 0.70
Silver: 23.04, +0.072

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Dow Down 6th Straight Session; Bummer for 5% of Population

Consider this salient factoid (and question its validity): Five percent of the US population owns 82% of all common stock.

So, with that in mind, who - besides the employees of the major corporate entities in this country (a big number) - cares?

It might be worth suggesting that a 5-10-15-20% pullback in stocks would be a healthy development, bringing down the elite to more moderate levels.

This is sophistry, of course. A diminution in the relative income or net worth of the wealthiest amongst us would surely trickle down to those not quite rich, the middle class and eventually the bottom income levels.

Yes. Those nearest the gutter would be dragged down into it and die. Others would take their places. Those in the middle would become less fortunate (say goodbye to paying U of Michigan $52,000 a year for tuition, room and board). Those in the upper tiers would eat strip steaks instead of filet mignon and the top five percent would drive their Mercedes or Lexus or Maserati a little less often.

This is all very relative; the deciding factors being, most prominently, not how much you're worth or how much you make, but what you can be productive with, what your knowledge and skills are and how much you spend.

Wall Street is a very cockeyed place, full of people who think they know better how to manage other people's money than those people themselves. For an alternative perspective, go to a farm, where a person's value is derived from utility, rather than fantasy.

Dow 14,897.55, -105.44 (0.70%)
NASDAQ 3,599.79, -13.80 (0.38%)
S&P 500 1,642.80, -9.55 (0.58%)
NYSE Composite 9,339.37, -82.19 (0.87%)
NASDAQ Volume 1,401,692,625
NYSE Volume 3,306,747,750
Combined NYSE & NASDAQ Advance - Decline: 1871-4677
Combined NYSE & NASDAQ New highs - New lows: 83-178
WTI crude oil: 103.85, -1.26
Gold: 1,370.10, -2.50
Silver: 22.96, -0.108

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Dow Fades Into Close for 5th Straight Losing Session

Issues persist in global financial markets and investors are beginning to shift assets back into fixed income, since yields are rising and should continue to do so, though chances that the Fed will begin tapering in September appear to be diminishing as economic data and corporate reports are not suggestive of a strengthening economy.

The Dow, which, along with the other major indices, was positive all session long, finally succumbed to selling pressure in the final minutes of trading, ending the day with a minor loss, though still the fifth straight session in the red.

What's not being talked about much is where the Dow Industrials currently are settled, well below the 50-day moving average (roughly 15,275) and in danger of sparking another rout in stocks. Additionally, Dow stocks are largely among the best dividend-payers, just the kind of risk asset that investors are shunning, with interest rates on the rise and fixed income carrying much less perceived risk than even blue chip stocks.

The Dow components aren't exactly going to be sold off in wholesale fashion - there's too many diversified investors in them - but they have obviously been under pressure since the start of August, despite Fed incantations and deliberations over QE tapering beginning sometime in the near future.

For gambling types, the biggest question is whether the Fed will actually begin tapering its bond-buying in September, or, at some later date. Some suggest that the economy is so weak, and the Fed terrified of causing a market panic, that tapering will not and cannot occur in the current environment. The secondary issue of by how much the Fed will taper is also in play. Being that the Fed is now so trapped and dovish, the tapering might be an inconsequential number, like $10 billion, reducing their total bond purchases to $75 billion a month, still an enormous liquidity lift.

In such a case, wherein the Fed reduces QE by a mere $10 billion a month, in either September or October, and then continues to cut down on bond purchases at a rate of around $10 billion a month every two to three months, would probably be enough to rattle markets a bit without causing a correction or crash. Of course, the US and global economies are currently in such a weakened state that markets may crash and burn on their own, despite what the Fed and other central banks conspire in their rigging.

The outlook remains the same, with the bias toward the downside. September, with the Federal government politicians back from their extended, annual August recess, is shaping up to be momentous, what with budget negotiations and an expected fight over raising the debt ceiling again, with the outlier that the Republican Tea Partiers may be so inclined as to stall negotiations on both issues to a point at which the government is shut down. On top of the already-expanding sequester, these kind of childish hissy fits from our political elite might be enough to topple the markets into bear territory.

It's an eventuality, as the bull market is approaching the 54-month mark, which it will reach on September 9. The week of September 8-15 figures to be dramatic, with the anniversary of 9/11 and expected hijinks in the corridors of power.

One thing is for sure: the housing market is already under stress and, unless interest rates suddenly reverse course (unlikely), the so-called recovery in housing is over, dead and done. Real estate prices nationwide should experience a fairly sharp pullback over the next three to 12 months, because there are not enough qualified purchasers out there, interest rates are driving up the cost of buying and carrying a mortgage, and, the number of homes still held off the market by the banks continues to be an enormous, unseen force driving down real estate. Bargains are out there, but one has to look hard and long for the right ones at the right entry price. This is not a market for bold speculation, but rather for considered, strategic purchasing of the right property, be it for housing, farming or simply to escape the madness which is headed toward everyone within 10 miles of a major population center.

Major shifts in the economies of billions of people are underway and will play out over the next five to seven years, transforming the economic landscape beyond what most people can imagine.

Dow 15,002.99, -7.75 (0.05%)
NASDAQ 3,613.59, +24.50 (0.68%)
S&P 500 1,652.35, +6.29 (0.38%)
NYSE Composite 9,421.56, +35.67 (0.38%)
NASDAQ Volume 1,285,024,000
NYSE Volume 3,266,316,500
Combined NYSE & NASDAQ Advance - Decline: 4827-1777
Combined NYSE & NASDAQ New highs - New lows: 75-316
WTI crude oil: 104.96, -2.14
Gold: 1,372.60, +6.90
Silver: 23.07, -0.095

Stocks Slammed Again; 10-Year at 2.90%; Egypt Coming Apart

Make it four down days in a row and nine of the last 11 for the Dow Industrials, since making an all-time closing high of 15,658.36 on August 2nd, slipping today to the closest point to 15,000 since July 5th.

If one needs a catalyst or cause, it's Egypt. A former ally, the most populous Muslim nation in the Middle East, now up in flames and our government backing the wrong side. Tragic, complex and horrifying, the tableau playing out is enough to shatter the confidence of most of the globe.

Beyond the obvious implications of large nations devolving into anarchy and chaos, there are so many other issues - financial and political - roiling the markets, it is impossible to take all of them accurately into account. Suffice to say, it's a mess out there and politicians are about to make it messier, with a new round of budget battles and debt ceiling debate set to get underway in the nation's capitol.

On the global horizon, India is having a currency crisis, the Rupee falling to historic lows against the dollar as the Indian government attempts to limit and/or tax individual holdings of gold. It certainly will not work. India has the highest gold-ownership per capita on the planet.

Naturally, our very own Federal Reserve will not be outdone by foreign rivals. The Fed continues to tinker and experiment with the currency, becoming all-too-powerful a force in all markets, from commodities to stocks to treasuries.

Speaking of treasuries, the benchmark 10-year note touched 2.90% today, a 130-basis-point rise since May. Literally, nothing will destroy the economy better than uncontrollably-rising interest rates, and we have them across the curve.

It has long been said on this blog and elsewhere that these experimental attempts to revive a dead, decaying, US and global economy will not end well. The stark reality is that the global economy imploded in 2008. All the QE, ZIRP and presumptive actions by the Fed and other central banks is nothing but window dressing, the model in the storefront being a naked - and likely capitalist - pig.

If the carnage since 2008 has not been enough for this country to bear, imagine the pain as it's about to get worse, a lot worse.

Dow 15,010.74, -70.73 (0.47%)
NASDAQ 3,589.09, -13.69 (0.38%)
S&P 500 1,646.06, -9.77 (0.59%)
NYSE Composite 9,385.89, -79.70 (0.84%)
NASDAQ Volume 1,402,886,250
NYSE Volume 3,236,012,750
Combined NYSE & NASDAQ Advance - Decline: 1566-5077
Combined NYSE & NASDAQ New highs - New lows: 64-532 (how quickly it has turned!)
WTI crude oil: 107.10, -0.36
Gold: 1,365.70, -5.30
Silver: 23.17, -0.156

Friday, August 16, 2013

End-Game Begins as Stocks Are Sold, Bond Yields Rise, Precious Metals Take Off

What happened over the latter part of this week should be the stuff of history books for future economic historians, given there will even be an economic history after the worst crisis in history begins its second leg down.

Forget about Friday. That was mostly churn, finger-pointing, squaring of positions in options and a great deal of nail-biting by the financial elite and central bankers. The real action was on Wednesday and Thursday, and, more specifically, the close of the trading day Wednesday and the pre-market Thursday, when St. Louis fed president, James Bullard, made comments, first to a Rotary club in Paducah, Kentucky, at 3:15 pm EDT Wednesday, and then reiterated and expanded upon those comments Thursday prior to the opening bell.

Both attempts to jawbone the market back into a state of control were, as they say in current parlance, epics fails, because market fundamentals - those things like economic data and earnings reports - finally came to the forefront and overtook what little control the Federal Reserve had over markets - both stocks and bonds.

Wednesday was shaping up to be a painful session when Bullard attempted to soothe the pain by saying that the Fed needed more data in the second half of the year before committing to a slowdown in their bond-purchase program (aka QE) in September or sometime near that time frame. The market's knee-jerk reaction was a swift erasure of 30 losing Dow points, but almost as quickly, sellers swamped back in, with the Dow closing near the lows of the day.

After the close, Cisco (CSCO) released second quarter earnings, with a penny miss on EPS and a small shortfall in revenue. Making matters worse was the conference call afterwards, in which the company issued some negative guidance, as has been the mantra this earnings season, sending the stock down roughly 10% in after hours trading.

On Thursday morning, Wal-Mart (WMT) released their second quarter earnings report, eeril similar to Cisco's complete with negative guidance for the remainder of the year. Around 7:30 am EDT, when pre-market trading opened, Dow futures, already down substantially, took a nosedive.

Queue James Bullard, reiterating Wednesday's comments and adding some new verbiage, in a desperate attempt to satiate the trading community. Once again, Bullard's comments failed to incite any kind of rally in futures. The day was setting up to be a bad one for the bulls.

At 8:30 am, the final nail in the coffin was hammered home by the weekly unemployment claims report, which came in at 320,000, a six-year low and a complete misread by anyone thinking a better jobs picture would be a salve for jittery traders. It was the exact opposite, the thinking being that if the jobs picture was indeed improving, the Fed would be more than willing to begin curbing QE in September. Futures were pounded even lower and the market opened in a sea of red ink, the Dow quickly down 150, then 200 points, the other major indices following along in a coordinated dive. Interest rates spiked higher, prompting even the most steadfast into a selling frenzy.

The upshot is that unemployment claims, despite being at multi-year lows, is a complete canard. The jobs created over the past past year, and primarily the last six months, have been mostly low-paying, service-type, part-time varieties, due to the coming slaughter of the jobs market via Obamacare, which mandates employer-provided insurance for companies with more than 50 full-time employees. While there are no real new jobs being created, nobody's leaving to look elsewhere for work and the slack caused by full-time jobs being split into part-time increments means more jobs overall, just not good ones and, especially, not full-time ones.

Thus, unemployment claims henceforth must be viewed with a skewed eye, despite the glad-handing by the media, financial pundits and politicians. Evidence that the overall economy is not even close to the so-called "recovery" we've all been anxiously awaiting since 2009, was amply provided by Cisco and Wal-Mart, two huge employers and both Dow components.

With the close on Thursday, the market was pointed for the worst week of the year heading into Friday, and, despite a lame attempt at tape-painting late in the session, it was delivered, with all of the indices closing marginally lower.

Treasuries hit their highest yields in two years, anathema to stocks and the housing market, further clouding the picture for the Fed and their plans for a graceful exit by Mr. Bernanke later this year. The Fed has lost control of all markets; they likely cannot slow their bond purchases in September, lest they risk a complete meltdown in stocks and melt-up in yields.

Gold and silver - especially the latter - had their best week in two-and-a-half years, with both hitting three-month highs and breaking out of the recent, depressed range.

Looking out a month to three months, the Fed is completely boxed in. On one hand, they can say that the economy is improving enough - even though the data doesn't remotely support such a claim - and begin tapering in September, even October. Or, they could face reality, admit their policies have been utter failures and continue the current pace of QE. Neither scenario is particularly bullish for stocks, the reality case the worst, as the decline off the August 2nd closing high has begun to accelerate with a strong downward trajectory, sending the Dow straight through its 50-day moving average, and the S&P closing out the week resting right upon its 50-day.

Nothing good will come from the politicians' return from their month-long hiatus, when they will once again entertain the markets with their rituals of piercing the debt ceiling and coming up with a budget or suitable continuing resolution. No matter what the Fed decides in September can be perceived as good, though from a trading standpoint, keeping QE at its current $85 billion per month will appear as a victory of sorts for the Wall Street crowd, when in reality it is admission that all has failed and the Fed can do nothing, other than continue debasing the currency until is ceases to exist.

The mathematical certainty that the experiment with fiat currency, back with nothing but promises and lies, will fail, is entering the second leg, or the third, after the crash in '08-09 and the nearly five years of false, liquidity-driven recovery. Any astute observer will immediately comprehend that lost faith in the currency foreshadows another crisis, this one likely more severe than that of 2008.

While many of the status quo will cringe at the prospect of the greenback's death throes and a complete collapse of the global economy, those fed up to their eyeballs with the current regime of lies, uncertainty, complete fraud by the major banks and totalitarian fear-mongering will welcome the change with open arms.

One can only hope that it won't drag on and out for years, as in europe and the Middle East, but the best advice at this point is to stay in precious metals, away from large population centers and hope for the best while preparing for the worst.

Other than those dire words, it looks to be a fine summer weekend in most of the US. Get out and enjoy some sun and taste the bounty of our land. Food, the fuel we humans - at the most basic level - need to survive, is still readily produced and relatively inexpensive. And that, my friends, is one shining silver lining.

Dow 15,081.47, -30.72 (0.20%)
NASDAQ 3,602.78, -3.34 (0.09%)
S&P 500 1,655.83, -5.49 (0.33%)
NYSE Composite 9,465.19, -24.10 (0.25%)
NASDAQ Volume 1,458,862,12
NYSE Volume 3,532,477,250
Combined NYSE & NASDAQ Advance - Decline: 2554-3882
Combined NYSE & NASDAQ New highs - New lows: 77-369
WTI crude oil: 107.46, +0.13
Gold: 1,371.00, +10.10
Silver: 23.32, +0.387

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Stocks Rocked, Gold. Silver, 10-Year Rip higher; Now, we're Getting Somewhere

And that somewhere is closer to reality.

No time now, full recap on Friday as the carnage commences.

Dow 15,112.19, -225.47 (1.47%)
NASDAQ 3,606.12, -63.16 (1.72%)
S&P 500 1,661.32, -24.07 (1.43%)
NYSE Composite 9,489.29, -104.21 (1.09%)
NASDAQ Volume 1,699,330,750
NYSE Volume 3,885,446,000
Combined NYSE & NASDAQ Advance - Decline: 1235-5423
Combined NYSE & NASDAQ New highs - New lows: 57-453 (WOWOWOWOW!!!)
WTI crude oil: 107.33, +0.48 (really?)
Gold: 1,360.90, +27.50 (Good!)
Silver: 22.94, +1.148 (Really Good!)

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Fed's Bullard Fails to Halt Market Decline; Fed Credibility Nil; Correction, Potential Crash in Motion

At last!

After weeks of churning, uneventful trading, Wall Street delivered a most interesting session on Wednesday.

Instead of the usual down in the morning, up in the afternoon routine that's been de rigueur of late, this was a dip that virtually nobody was buying.

Stocks began the session quietly, but soon fell to their lows of the day, shortly before the close of European markets. Money that had heretofore been jumping from European equities into US stocks did not manage to materialize, as they have over the past few weeks.

Instead, stocks languished in negative territory, with the Dow down between 60 and 90 points most of the midday. Another bump lower between 1:00 and 2:00 pm EDT left the Dow at its lows of the day, the S&P and NASDAQ following it down, though on a lower percentage basis.

At 3:15 pm, St. Louis Fed president James Bullard, one of the more effeminate and dovish Fed members, laid out his pre-arranged meme to calm markets in an unofficial speech to a Rotary club in Paducah, Kentucky, saying that he Fed needed more data in the second half before embarking on any kind of bond purchase tapering and that the Fed should hold press conferences after every FOMC meeting, in order to facilitate a more open, quick response to markets.

Initially, stocks moved upward on his comments, but quickly fell back, signaling that traders and markets have become weary of the differentiating tone of the Fed, one day favoring tapering, the next day softening their stance. The market response to Bullard's comments was clearly a sign that fundamental market analysis was overtaking the Fed's manipulation by word of mouth and that the Fed was clearly stuck in a box from which there was no salvageable escape.

Truth is, the economy is not improving to any noticeable degree, and even a partial winding down or "tapering" of QE would cause a selloff in stocks and likely another round of interest rate hikes devoid of any influence from the Federal Reserve. Nearly disarmed and out of ammunition, the Fed is now stuck between a rock and a hard place. They can declare the economy improving and crash the market (because it isn't) or hold tight to their insane strategy of pumping $85 billion a month in bond purchases for a longer time period, a strategy that has caused distortions and dislocations of magnificent proportions.

Traders, usually quick-thinking and thick-skinned, have found no solace in Fed utterings of late, and are taking action on their own, mostly on the side of selling, to the utter dismay of the proponents of central planning and controlled economic reality.

Stocks suffered fairly severely, though still are floating on a sea of liquidity supplied by the ever-present Fed, a condition which - whether it changes or not - seems to have run its course. Valuations are such that further gains need a serious catalyst in the form or fundamentally strong data, which has yet to materialize. Thus, booking profits off the outsize gains from the first half seems to be the prudent strategy prior to the next FOMC meeting in September, and there's little the Fed can do to stem the waves of selling pressure now appearing in all sectors.

A slew of fiscal and geopolitical risks also conspire against the Federal Reserve and the stock market, making the condition ripe for a serious, sustained correction. The cyclical bull, inspired off the first round of QE and ZIRP in March 2009, is now 54 months old, and getting a bit weary.

Only fools would rush in to this market, but as is well known, Wall Street and investment types are replete with foolish folks, so a quick pop prior to a reversal would not be a surprise, though the odds for a solid correction of 5-10% are rising quickly.

Though losses were not large, the Hinderburg Omen strategy remains the most powerful. The advance-decline line was humbled on today's session, the losing streak has all indices down for the month and new lows overwhelmed new highs (as shown below) for the first time in two months. Gold and silver made substantial gains both during NYMEX and electronic trading, with silver the shining out-performer of the day.

All of this sets up for a bearish tone tomorrow and into next week, with key data releases on Thursday, including the closely-watched weekly unemployment claims.

Cisco (CSCO) reported after the bell, beating earnings per share by a penny with revenues roughly in line with estimates. Before the opening bell tomorrow, McDonald's reports with expectations of 1.25 pr share and revenue of 118.25 for the second quarter. Same store comps will be closely monitored as those fell in the previous quarter from a year ago.

Dow 15,337.66, -113.35 (0.73%)
NASDAQ 3,669.27, -15.17 (0.41%)
S&P 500 1,685.39, -8.77 (0.52%)
NYSE Composite 9,593.34, -37.23 (0.39%)
NASDAQ Volume 1,546,362,000
NYSE Volume 3,126,848,500
Combined NYSE & NASDAQ Advance - Decline: 2451-4038
Combined NYSE & NASDAQ New highs - New lows: 217-272
WTI crude oil: 106.85, +0.02
Gold: 1,333.40, +12.90
Silver: 21.79, +0.444

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Dull and Duller Market Nears Midweek

About the most exciting thing that can be said about the stock market this week is that it's nearly to the middle of it.

The same pattern that has persisted for the better part of two weeks - down in the morning, up in the afternoon - showed itself again today, taking the Dow on a 150+ point round trip.

Carl Icahn tweets that he has a position in Apple and the stock gains five percent. Nice to have money.

Otherwise, there's the Hindenburg Omen sitting out there, making some investors a little fidgety. Others still are making hay. The rest are still making out with other traders' wives in the Hamptons.

And so it goes. If it gets any duller, the exchanges may have to call in clowns and magicians just to keep people interested.

In fact, maybe that's not a bad idea. Between the politicians, the bankers and the fed governors, they have the requisite talent already waiting in the wings.

Advancers to decliners was completely out of whack today, another moment for fans of that Hindenburg thingy.

Dow 15,451.01, +31.33 (0.20%)
NASDAQ 3,684.44, +14.49 (0.39%)
S&P 500 1,694.16, +4.69 (0.28%)
NYSE Composite 9,630.59, +21.56 (0.22%)
NASDAQ Volume 1,590,814,000
NYSE Volume 3,284,255,000
Combined NYSE & NASDAQ Advance - Decline: 2953-3896
Combined NYSE & NASDAQ New highs - New lows: 261-220
WTI crude oil: 106.83, +0.72
Gold: 1,320.50, -13.70
Silver: 21.34, +0.004

Friday, August 9, 2013

More Churning as Stocks End Week Lower

Stocks disappointed this week, but after all was said and done, the damage was, at worst, marginal, or as Chairman Bernanke and his crony capitalists might call it, modest.

The same pattern of trading appeared every day of the week, typified by a weak start, a bottoming out before noon and a half-hearted rally - on exceptionally-low volume - into the close.

All said, the major indices barely budged.

For the week, the Dow was the biggest loser, down 233 points. The NASDAQ shed all of 29 points, while the S&P dropped a whole 18 points. All this may be indicative of is rotation out of dividend-payers to more speculative stocks, a kind of reverse shoot-the-generals move which is about as back-asswards as this market can get. On the other hand, why should it be any different? Even though the Fed has signaled - with both hands and feet and the waving of other extremities, ear-pulling, farting and goofy faces - that they're going to taper bond-buying in September, why should traders care. It's still a month away, more than ample time to do some shorting, dip-buying and re-selling.

Like a freight train without a locomotive, the market, and the economy, are going nowhere fast.

The whole enterprise is pretty damned stupid.

Meanwhile, silver had made a nice move over the past two days, up more than 4%.

Here's a re-posting of a comment left on another site:

Bravo to all who participate in keeping the spirit of America alive, while the government tears it down.

I should say that I think the tide is turning. These a-holes are visibly shaken on a daily basis and it's only a matter of time before the hackers, the self-employed, the thinking people in America bring this system crashing to its core.

Wall Street and the government (and I mean government at all levels, right down to towns and villages) are beyond corrupt. They are now so transparently out-of-touch and ugly to be contemptible. On a daily basis, I meet more and more people who are just refusing to play along any further, from the contractors who give discounts for cash payments, to landlords of homes in foreclosure, to simple, everyday working people whose loathing for this broken system has turned to disgust and disobedience.

Americans are a rare breed. We'll play along for a while, but, in the meantime, we work our own plans, and eventually there's a clash. Governments always fall. Free people who are willing to fight - by whatever means necessary - will always be free. Few are afraid any longer. The bogeymen of terrorism and national security are being laughed at by the masses.

Sure, there's still a lot of sheeple out there, but there are now enough people with backbone who are unafraid because they no longer want to endure this madness from people like Obama, Hayden, McCain, the banksters, etc., who will actually protect the sheeple from themselves and their nanny state government.

There used to be a poster here with the moniker, "CrashIsOptimistic," and that's now the status quo. The elites - fuck-ups that they are - will cause their own demise, hastened by the very people they wish to subjugate.

Grow your own, run your own, mind your business, and when the tax man or the repo man comes calling, play dumb. My experience with a bad mortgage has now run beyond four years and it's been a valuable learning experience, so much so, that other people are asking my advice, which, is simply, FIGHT.

Carry on. They can kill us all, but seriously, who wants to live under the thumb of tyrants?

Dow 15,425.51, -72.81 (0.47%)
NASDAQ 3,660.11, -9.02 (0.25%)
S&P 500 1,691.42, -6.06 (0.36%)
NYSE Composite 9,622.11, -12.59 (0.13%)
NASDAQ Volume 1,524,848,625
NYSE Volume 3,203,273,250
Combined NYSE & NASDAQ Advance - Decline: 3006-3470
Combined NYSE & NASDAQ New highs - New lows: 249-131
WTI crude oil: 105.97, +2.57
Gold: 1,312.20, +2.30
Silver: 20.41, +2.14

Thursday, August 8, 2013

The Stock Market Makes Perfect Sense...

...if you are a card-carrying bankster, politician or broker-dealer.

Otherwise, when every available Fed Governor is squealing at the top of his or her lungs that the Fed is going to taper its bond-buying in September yields should rise.

They keep going down...

And the stock market indices are sitting near all-time highs, or, in the case of the wildly-inflated NASDAQ, 13-year highs.

If you really believe the real estate market is is god shape, unemployment is really 7.4% and that ObamaCare is going to lower premiums and provide for better medical care nationwide, then the stock market at these levels makes perfect sense.


(The preceding message was brought to you by people who remember when the economy was functioning, when America was a net EXPORTER, and when the federal debt was below $4 billion - which wasn't all that long ago.)

For those of you in your teens and 20s, carrying, or about to embark upon college and student loans, you are toast, debt slaves and completely hoodwinked by people who could care less about your future or the future of this country. Good luck with that four-year degree when you're asking "do you want fries with that?"

That's enough for today. Anybody who can't stand the current economic climate (of uncertainty), post a comment. Or don't. We here at Money Daily don't really care.

BTW: Silver closed above $20 per ounce for the first time since July 29. Will it hold this time? Bear in mind that the London Fix was at $31.75 on February 7 (again, not that long ago). Since then, it's been straight down to around these levels, with a low of 18.61 on June 27. It's still a bargain all the way back to $23 an ounce, and, it's still REAL MONEY.

Dow 15,498.32, +27.65 (0.18%)
NASDAQ 3,669.12, +15.12 (0.41%)
S&P 500 1,697.48, +6.57 (0.39%)
NYSE Composite 9,634.47, +66.21 (0.69%)
NASDAQ Volume 1,641,758,375
NYSE Volume 3,475,672,000
Combined NYSE & NASDAQ Advance - Decline: 4175-2345
Combined NYSE & NASDAQ New highs - New lows: 270-112
WTI crude oil: 103.40, -0.97
Gold: 1,309.90, +24.60
Silver: 20.19, +0.685

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Stocks Continue to Drift Lower as Fed Signals Tapering

Yesterday, the S&P 500 dropped below 1700. Today, the Dow Industrials broke below 15,500, both of those numbers officially in nose-bleed territory anyway, so it shouldn't be a surprise that, with Fed governors racing around the country giving speeches in which they hint about tapering in September, stocks should be falling.

Economic news has been fairly positive the past few months, so, despite the ungodly-awful employment reports and the coming disaster that is implementation of ObamaCare, the Fed sees fit to cut back its bond-buying from the current $85 billion a month, come September.

At issue is how much the Fed is willing to cut back on their bond-binge, be it by $10 billion, $20 billion or maybe even more.

They're not telling, so the traders are bracing for the unexpected, though most eyes are looking at the lower end of the range, maybe a $10 to $15 billion cut back.

That's not much consolation for holders of stocks for the long run, because the economy is still weak and sputtering along at - despite the official figure - sub-one-percent GDP, and that is not sustainable.

While praise for the Federal Reserve and chief money printer, Ben Bernanke, is nearly universal, the crooks and scoundrels on Wall Street don't want the party to end too soon, or, for most, at all. They'd be absolutely content with continuing bond purchases well beyond the markets' abilities to absorb them, fueling speculative trades as the underlying economy collapses.

They're not going to get that, but the Fed will relent and add back in more bond purchases if Wall Street wails loudly enough.

Up until now, there's been nothing bad about the direction the Fed has taken the markets and the country, but, unlike most fairy tales, the ending may not be so happy. The Fed may taper, but Wall Street isn't going to like it one bit, but it's the medicine most needed whether it crushes stocks and the economy, because all the malinvestments still need to be cleared, and there are a lot of them out there.

The selling pressure of the past few days may be a prelude to what's coming, but that's not going to happen this month, as DC politicians are on their usual, month-long hiatus and volume on the exchanges have been hitting the summer doldrums.

September will come, like the sun follows the rain, but it will be month of gnashing of teeth, incriminations and finger-pointing, everybody blaming each other for their own problems. When the pols get back, they'll be trying to raise the debt limit and put together a budget, two things that they've been unable to do successfully for some time.

Well, they can and have raised the debt ceiling, but at what cost?

Meanwhile, note that new lows outpaced new highs today. Could this be the market turn for which some have been calling?

Dow 15,470.67, -48.07 (0.31%)
NASDAQ 3,654.01, -11.76 (0.32%)
S&P 500 1,690.91, -6.46 (0.38%)
NYSE Composite 9,568.27 46.05 (0.48%)
NASDAQ Volume 1,616,177,250
NYSE Volume 3,087,253,500
Combined NYSE & NASDAQ Advance - Decline: 2049-4440
Combined NYSE & NASDAQ New highs - New lows: 146-197
WTI crude oil: 104.37, -0.93
Gold: 1,285.30, -2.80
Silver: 19.51, -0.015

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Dow Smacked-Down near Midday

Just about 10:00 am Tuesday, the Dow Jones Industrials were down 139 points after dropping 46 in Monday's session.

More to follow on Wednesday (vacation schedule).

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Day-Long Ramp Job

Today's action is precisely what was referenced in yesterday's post.

There's absolutely no telling where or when the market (forget individual stocks, that's another story) is going to move. At the close yesterday was a vast selloff, normally indicating trouble ahead, but, if you sold at the close yesterday, you were shut out this morning unless you wanted back in at a much higher price because the market gapped up tremendously at the open and stayed right up there for the remainder of the session, closing just about where it opened.

This kind of activity may be meaningless to the casual investor, but it's death to day-traders, options players and short-term speculators unless you're on the inside and know the game plan. It's all pre-arranged, pre-planned and if you're not on the short list, you're, well... screwed. Royally. On. A. Big. Stick.

Just look at what happened to JC Penny yesterday. Entering the close of trading, word goes out that CIT has cut their lines of credit and the stock gets hit for about 10% in just a five-minute span, right before the close.

Word has it that Goldman Sachs (yeah, those guys) had recently arranged financing for the troubled retail chain, to the tune of about $2.25 billion, with JCP putting up its real estate - which is extensive - as collateral. So, when word comes that CIT has pulled their lines of credit, hastening the path to bankruptcy court, one can assume that the great Lloyd Blankfein and the criminal John Thain (CEO of CIT, formerly of BOfA's Merrill Lynch and before that, head of the NY stock exchange) must have had lunch at some point over the past few months and arranged the untidy undoing of JC Penny.

Today, via the same source, the NY Post, comes word that the CIT story was a complete fabrication and that JC Penny is still receiving shipments and has ample cash on hand.

Either way this plays out, true story or not, per CIT, somebody lost a lot of money yesterday, and, somebody made a bunch today as the stock recovered most of the losses.

Best guess is that Thain and Blankfein and their firms (or their off-shore accounts) were the main beneficiaries of this bit of dis-or-mis-information. How anybody can trade in this environment is a question for the ages or sages. It's a sick-o world out there in the land of high-finance.

Tomorrow's non-farm payroll report comes out at 8:30 am EDT, prior to the opening bell. As we used to say in high school, BFD. Look it up.

Dow 15,628.02, +128.48 (0.83%)
NASDAQ 3,675.74, +49.37 (1.36%)
S&P 500 1,706.87, +21.14 (1.25%)
NYSE Composite 9,673.39, +114.56 (1.20%)
NASDAQ Volume 1,835,171,500
NYSE Volume 4,175,730,750
Combined NYSE & NASDAQ Advance - Decline: 4375-2251
Combined NYSE & NASDAQ New highs - New lows: 698-89
WTI crude oil: 107.89, +2.86
Gold: 1,311.20, -1.80
Silver: 19.62, -0.004