4/12/13…more important: bank earnings or retail sales???

From the Friars Club Encyclopedia of Jokes: “Among the things that money can’t buy is what it used to.” – Max Kauffmann

TB’s Song of the Day, “Who Needs Money?”:

A duet by Elvis Presley and Ray Walker
(Words & music by Randy Starr)

I’m on the right track for lots of kissin’

So that old greenback, I won’t be missin’

All the greatest things in life are free

Who needs money? Not me

Cash or credit, it doesn’t matter

Long as my bank books keep growin’ fatter

Easy street is my favorite avenue

Who needs money? I do

Just pity all those millionaires they never can relax

Because they’re always worryin’ about their income tax

Why waste time on high financin’?

I’d rather spend it on good romancin’

What if my pockets are empty as can be?

Who needs money? not me Tell me about it

Some folks save it, some folks lend it

But as for me I wanna spend it

Give me some green and my skies will be blue

Who needs money? I do

Stocks and bonds, they only bore me

Interest holds no interest for me

Who wants to sit in the lap of luxury

Who needs money? Not me

When I go to bed at night

instead of counting sheep

I start counting dollar bills

and then I fall asleep

Making money never thrills me

It’s making love that really kills me

What can I lose with my philosophy

Who needs money? Not me


What do you want?

I want a big yacht I can cruise in

The kind that girls just can’t refuse in

All it takes is a million or two

Who needs money? I do

Any time some gal starts flirtin’

Now that I’m broke I know for certain

She really digs my personality

Tell me, who needs money? Not me

Poverty’s the only thing that money cannot buy

So rich or poor it pays to have M O N E Y
A gal who’s tender,

that’s what I love It’s legal tender,


I want a pile of Just let my liquid assets overflow

You can’t take it with you when you go
So, who needs money? That lovely, lovely money

Who needs money? Not me

(Never heard the song before yesterday on Sirius – Elvis channel…thought it appropriate. TB)
Bloomberg Quote of the Day: “A well-written life is almost as rare as a well spent one.” – Thomas Carlyle

Bloomberg Top Stories:

*March Retail Sales in U.S. Fell the Most in Nine Months as Hiring Slowed – DUH!

*JPMorgan Profit Climbs More Than Estimated as Loan-Loss Provisions Are Cut.

*Stocks Drop as Euro Weakens; Treasuries Gain Before U.S. Retail Sales Data

*Wells Fargo First-Quarter Profit Rises 22% as Home Lender Reduces Expenses

*BOJ Said to Weigh Raising Inflation Forecast in Sign 2% Pledge Attainable

*Economy Bears Turn Bulls Seeing 3% GDP for U.S. Few Dared Predict in 2012

*Dijsselbloem Says Everything in Place for Cyprus’s $13 Billion Aid Deal

*Biotech Industry at Stake as U.S. Top Court Considers Human Gene Patents

*Gay Pro Athletes Finding Backers From Nike to NHL as Sponsor Money Awaits

*Kerry Says Nuclear North Korea Is Unacceptable While Calling for Dialogue

*McDonough Brings New Order to Obama West Wing to Press President’s Agenda

*U.S. Finds North Korea May Be Able to Deliver Nuclear Warhead Unreliably

Ah, another day of rally…except, once again, someone forgot to tell the Dow Transports which fell by 0.4%…also, while the Dow and S&P posted lukewarm 0.4% gains, BOTH Nasdaq indices and the Russell 2000 were up less than 0.1%! Hmmm, and aren’t Utilities supposed to be weak? They rose 0.2% – more than those three key indices! Ah, but NYSE Financials saved the day climbing 0.4%…but only brokers – tell you something as the banks release earnings starting today? Expect big cuts in the loan loss reserves…in other words, simply recouping set asides for higher losses…but what about growth…loan growth??? Total NYSE Volume slipped slightly to a still average 3.38B shares vs3.47B shares vs 3.23B, A/D’s and Breadth were MIXED with Nasdaq losing.  The VIX declined again – slightly – remaining well below the 40/50 day, and way below the 200 day m/a. Close was lowest since 3/15 – nearly closing gap created 3/15-3/18!

*Dow Transports DOWN 0.3% vs +1.8% vs -0.3% vs +0.9% vs +0.3% vs -0.5% vs +0.1% vs -1.3% vs -1.2% vs -1.5%. Russell 2000 +0.1% vs +1.8% vs -0.2% vs +0.9%, while Dow Utilities ROSE 0.2% vs +0.8% vs -0.2% vs +0.9% vs +0.5%. The S&P 500 rose by a weak 0.4% vs 1.2% vs +0.4% vs +0.6% vs -0.4% vs +0.4%. Nasdaq Composite and 100 were both up slightly less than 0.1% vs +1.8% vs +0.5% vs +0.6%, while the Dow rose by +0.4% vs +0.9% vs +0.4% vs +0.3% vs -0.3% vs +0.4% vs -0.8%.

*NYSE Volume slipped to 3.38B shares vs 3.46B vs 3.23B shares from a WEAK 2.82B shares vs 3.5B vs 3.32B vs 4.04B (highest since 3/15’s options expiry!) vs 3.29B vs 2.74B vs 3.27B vs 2.9B shares. REAL Volume also dipped to a WEAK 643M shares vs 688M (ave this week so far is a weak 649M) vs 670M vs 583M vs 726M vs 647M vs 812M vs 639M vs 573M vs 876M (high since since 3/15) vs 596M shares vs 558M shares –the range since 2/11 is 558M to 1.825B on 3/15’s options expiry and a near 12 month high, second only to 12/21’s 1.88B shares. Note that 3/15’s (options expiry) was the only day since 2/28 to register over 1B shares! Ave vol. 12 mos. 736M, ytd 714M. There have been just 11 800+M shares in 2013 – mostly on DOWN days!

  1. new 52 week highs which have ranged from 121-709, rose again to 591 vs 505 vs 312 vs 269 vs 146 vs 143 vs 193 vs 417. New lows were slightly higher at 41 vs 31 vs 52 vs 55 vs 96 vs 81 vs 114 vs 64; recent high 98.
  2. Advance/Declines were MIXED: +1.6% vs +3.1x vs +1.4x vs +1.2x vs -1.1x vs +1.6% vs -3.7x on NYSE and -1.1x vs +3.8% vs -1.2x vs +1.5x vs -1.5x vs +1.8x vs -3.3x on Nasdaq. Breadth was similar: +1.7x vs +3.2x vs +1.9x vs +3.7x! vs +1.0x vs +2.4x vs  -5.7x!!! on NYSE and -1.2x vs +6.5x!!! vs +2.1x vs +2x vs -1.5x vs +2.1x vs -4.3x!!! on Nasdaq.
  3. The Dow rose by 0.4% vs +0.9% vs +0.4% vs +0.3% vs -0.3%. Dow Transports FELL 0.3% vs +1.8% vs -0.3% vs +0.9% vs +0.5% vs +0.9% vs -1.3% while Dow Utilities rose 0.2% vs +0.8%! vs -0.2% vs +0.7% vs +0.5% vs +0.9%.The two Nasdaq indices rose by <0.1% vs +1.8% and 1.9% (95/5!) respectively vs 0.5% vs +0.6% and +0.7% vs +0.5%. The Russell 2000 rose by just 0.1% vs +1.8% vs -0.2%? vs +0.9% vs -0.3% vs +0.8% vs -1.7%. NYSE Financials rose by 0.4% vs 1.6% vs +0.4% vs +0.7% vs -0.3% vs +1% vs -1.6%. Brokers +0.7% vs +2.3%??? vs +0.4% vs +1.1% vs -0.2% vs +0.8% vs -2.1% while the two bank indices slipped by 0.1% and 0.2% respectively vs 1.4% vs +1.7% vs +1.1% vs -0.3%??? vs +0.7%. BofA again most active -0.4% to $12.27 vs +0.6% vs +0.3% vs +2% vs  +0.3% vs +1.1% vs -2.8%, 4th day above $12 since 3/6- the range is $11.11, on 12/17 to $12.78 on 3/20. Note: 12 cents is a 1% change!!!.
  4. Lastly, volatility (S&P VIX), fell for a 4th day to 12.24 -.12 vs 12.84 vs 13.19 vs 13.92 vs 13.89 vs 14.21 (high of 14.66 from a multi-year low!!!), it is oscillating wildly in a narrow range of 12.30-14.66, average 13.23, well below the 40/50 day (13.53/13.49) and the 200 day at 15.72…ytd the average has been 13.53 with a range of 19.28 (2/25!) to 11.05 (3/14) – 12 mo. ave 16.64!!! Prediction: it will fall until it doesn’t (can’t?) and then it will be time to sell ahead of a market decline!

Global equity markets WEAK for first time in FOUR sessions: UK -0.4% vs +0.3% vs +0.8% vs +0.5% vs +0.3% vs -1.8%; France -1.1%! vs +0.6% vs +1.3% vs +0.3% vs +0.3% vs -2%!!!; Germany -1.5%!!! vs +0.4% vs +1.2% vs +0.1% vs flat vs -2%!!!; Japan -0.5% vs +2%!!! vs +0.7% vs flat vs +2.8%!!! vs +1.6% vs +2.2% vs +3%!!!; Hang Seng -0.1% vs +0.3% vs +0.8% vs +0.7% vs -0.1% vs -2.7%!!!; Korea -1.3%!!! vs +0.7% vs +0.8% vs +0.1% vs -0.4% vs -1.6%!!! vs -1.2%; India -1.6%!!! vs +0.7% vs +1% vs -1.2%!!! vs -0.1% vs -0.3% vs -1.6% vs -1.2%. U.S. stock futures weaker all night and then plunged on Retail Sales: DOW -57; SPX -7.30; NDQ -14.25…happy Friday!!! NOT!!!

Bonds RALLIED WITH STOCKS yesterday and are very strong overnight: 10 yr Treasury 1.74% +7/16! (recent range WAS 2.06% to 1.85%), and the 30 yr’s 3.26% to 3.05%, 2.94% +1-3/16!!! The long TIP also rallying – finally – after setting a new (record?) low of 0.36%, now 0.46% +1-1/8! The high yield was 0.67%! Libor update: 0.240% 3 mos., 0.438% 6 mos. Foreign bond yields mixed again with problem countries weaker: Germany 1.25% -5!; UK 1.72% -5; France 1.82 -2, Italy 4.37 +4; Spain 4.70% +6; Portugal 6.18% -5; Greece 11.05%+2 vs 11.06% vs 11.25% vs 11.43% vs 11.53% vs 11.94% vs 11.20% vs 11.94% vs 12.09% (recent range 10.58-12.57%!).  

Gold lower intraday ($1553) and well below $1600, managed to close up at  $1564.90 +$6.10. Recent low of $1539.40, from 4/4, lowest since 6/29/11!!! It is way below resistance and the 1/17 high of $1699.90. The recent intraday high was $1618.30 (3/21), almost to the 40 day on 3/21!  We are around the 2/21/13 low of $1556.40 – not seen since May 2012! Last time it was below $1500 was Sept. 2011, now critical. The breakdown puts first resistance at the 40/50 day m/a’s $1591-1607 – still falling steadily. Overnight it is $1534.70 -$30.20!!! with a session low of $1526.90 – lowest since May 16!!!Crude closed WEAKER at $93.68 -$1.13. Friday’s intraday low was $91.91 – lowest since 3/21 – it broke above the 40 day ($93.68) and the 50 day ($94.32). The high of $97.80 on 4/1 was highest since 2/15! The range is $91.60-$97.80 since 3/12! The recent low is $89.33, lowest since 12/26, set on March 4. Overnight it is $91.92 -$1.59!!! WITH a session low of $91.67 – lowest since March 11!


Some random thoughts:

What kind of fools play in a market that can change direction on a whim? Does anyone recall Dow Theory that requires Transports to confirm advances in Dow Industrials? How many times of late have we seen that rule violated? Yet we remain bullish…or at least CNBC’s talking heads and their analytical friends. Remember no one makes money from a bearish prediction…therefore put more faith in a bear than a bull…you don’t have to agree with them but at least they are honest so think about it and decide for yourself.

Might not be a very pretty day…oops, U.S. Retail Sales just released for March and they FELL the most in NINE months on reduced hiring…jobs…and more importantly meaningful jobs that pay more – unlike the ones at all levels that have failed to keep pace with inflation for the past decade…don’t worry CEO’s you weren’t affected – idiots!

But wait…those higher bank earnings on loan loss reductions are causing a bounce from the overnight lows in futures…ah yes…the banks…may they increase dividends – soon!

Have a great weekend!



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