Quote of the Day from the Friars Club Encyclopedia of Jokes: “Confidence: what you start out with before you completely understand the situation.” – unattributed
Bloomberg Quote of the Day: “Don’t fight forces; use them.” – Buckminster Fuller
Bloomberg Top Stories:
*European Inflation Slows More Than Forecast to Lowest Level in Four Years
*S&P Futures Climb as Treasuries Drop, Yen Weakens; Lira, Ruble Strengthen – yawn
*Banks Including UBS, Barclays in Swiss Regulator Focus on Currency Rigging – yet another!
*High-Frequency Traders Ripping Off Investors in U.S., Michael Lewis Says – AND TB!!!
*Biggest ETF Exodus From Treasuries Since -10 Anticipates Higher Interest Rates – does it???
*GM Puts Margins Before Sales as Silverado Defies Chrysler Discounts – before safety too?
*Deutsche Bank Said to Weigh Forgoing China IPO Amid Industry Hiring Probe – another yawn!
*Energy Bonds Top G-10 Peers as Oil Flows Outside Keystone in Canada
*Michael Lewis Wants to Pry Open the Doors Wall Street Locks – finally someone with guts!!!
*Barclays Showdown With Investors Looms as Targets Reced for CEO Jenkins
*Erdogan Wins Local Elections After Share of Vote Gains on Stability Pledge – more promises…
*Obamacare Enrollment Heading Toward Initial 7 Million Target at Deadline
*Dashed IKEA Dreams in Ukraine Show Squandered Decades Lost to Corruption – nothing new
*World is Ill-Prepared to Handle Risks From Global Warming, UN Panel Says
Next week’s economic calendar is packed with important indicators. The highlight of the week will be the March ISM Manufacturing Survey (Tuesday), March ISM Non-Manufacturing Survey (Thursday) and March Employment Situation report (Friday). We will also get March Chicago ISM Survey and March Dallas Fed Manufacturing (Monday), February Construction Spending and March Motor Vehicle Sales (Tuesday), March ADP Employment and February Factory Orders (Wednesday) and February International Trade (Thursday). Courtesy of Economic Data Service
Friday’s Market Summary:
Today is quarterend…finally…will give yiou the scoreboard tomorrow but March wasn’t pretty – nor the first quarter except utilities and other income producing stocks. Banks had a good month, and Dow Transports but they are still flat for the quarter…mas o menos
But who cares? It’s a rigged market as this reporter has been telling you for more than a year. It fell on deaf – or complacent – ears as volume slumped…real volume especially…but perhaps there is some light…certainly not from the government but from Wall Street traitor, Michael Lewis. You have to watch the lead-off 60 Minutes segment which covers what TB has been screaming, and has been ignored…some quants found a way to beat the high freaks…but in doing so (and this was not pointed out), created another layer of advantage – for their customers, although arguably not at the expense of the public. For God’s sake fellow investment people, get off your butts and do something to force the SEC’s hand. They have sat idly by for five years while this situation developed and done nothing.
All indices were up (Russell 2000 flat) but by a weak 0.2%-0.5% – the laggards being the two Nasdaqs, +0.1% and 0.2% respectively. NYSE Financials up +0.3% but not even worthy of breaking down as all sectors were up slightly BUT BofA -0.2% and closed below $17! Citi fell 0.4%. Guess those sub 1% dividends aren’t considered ‘income producing.’
When was the last time you recall Dow Utilities being the place to be? When was the last time we had a rally on high volume – options expiry and monthend excepted? Yet there is no relenting by the stubborn bulls who remain in euphoria over the ‘green shoots’ (shouldn’t they have turned into blooming plants by now???). Not much notable yesterday but it didn’t help the situation – except Dow Utilities with another 0.7% gain. All others were down from 0.2% to 0.6% (Nasdaq) while the Dow Industrials were FLAT…thought that was the hallmark of the S&P 500?
NYSE Volume which had been running around average (3.5B) plunged to 2.96B shares vs 3.7B vs 3.5B vs 3.2B vs 3.4B following options expiry’s 5.09B shares!!! As for trades on the floor which hit a rare 2B shares, only fractionally below the 12 month high, the fell to 639M shares from a slightly above average (724M) 794M! vs 736M vs 645M vs 729M shares. Watch out for today being quarterend, noting that S&P Volatility (VIX) has dropped from 15 on 3/21 to 14.41 – even falling on some of those skimpy up days.
Advance/Declines AND Breadth were positive but not noteworthy especially Nasdaq which you had to take out to two decimals places to get: A/D: NYSE +2.5x vs +1.1x vs -2x vs +1.4x vs -1.7x vs +1.4x vs 1:1 vs -3x, Nasdaq +1.01x vs -1.5x vs -3.8x! vs +1.01x vs -2.9x vs -1.4x +1.1:1x vs -1.8x; Breadth +1.4x vs +1.2x vs -3.6x vs +1.5x vs -1.9x vs +1.04x vs +1.8x vs -2.4x vs +3.8x vs +3x vs -1.2x vs -5.2x!!! and +1.03x vs -1.7x vs -7x!!! vs +1.1x vs -3.8x!!! vs -2.1x vs +1.3x vs -1.4x vs +3.3x/+1.7x vs +1.04x vs -3.4x!. New 52 Week Highs rose slightly but remain weak: 110 vs 72 vs 151 vs 130 vs 117 vs 269 vs 239 vs 266 vs 269 vs 242 vs 146 vs 164 vs 117 while New Lows rose dropped from a two week high to 56 vs 83 vs 67 vs 35 vs 55 vs 45 vs 49 vs 37 vs 32 vs 36 vs 72 vs 79…16 (is the low!).
We all wish the quarter had ended with February!!!
Bonds: closed moderately lower after having been up for four of the five prior sessions (10’s 2.72% vs 2.68%, 3/3 high 2.79%; 30’s 3.55% vs 3.53% from 3.73%). Overnight, falling again: 10 yr 2.74% -1/8; 30 yr 3.56% -5/16; TIP 1.28% -3/8. Recent ranges: 30 yr high was 3.97% on 12/31; the 10 yr recent high 3.03%! Long TIP recent high was 1.64% The (record?) low of 0.36% was set on 4/5/13. Libor update: 0.231% 3 mos, 0.329% 6 mos. – record lows set recently: 3 mos 0.231% – new low!!! 6 mos 0.329%! NOTE the Fed Funds rate has averaged 0.08% since 5/22/13 BUT LOOK 0.02-0.05%!?! Foreign bond yields moderately higher, ex-Greece: Germany 1.58% +3; UK 2.75% +3 – recent high 3.03%! France 2.09% +3; Italy 3.32% +2; Spain 3.24% +1; Portugal 4.06% vs 3.97% +5; Greece 6.48 vs 6.54% vs 6.75% -5 o/n! AND another new post-crisis low!!! Recent range now 6.48% to 12.57%. Japan: 0.63% +2.
Gold is in trouble after imploding last week, breaking all supports and trading down to $1286.10 Friday, lowest since 2/13, before ‘bouncing’ to close at 1294.000 -.30 – well below all three moving averages and the second straight close below $1300 since 2/12!!! – off $91 in 10 sessions following the reversal (-6.5% but technically much worse)! On 3/17 it had a new recent high of $1392.60, highest high since 9/4/13 – that ended in an outside day and nearly a negative key reversal and has been down every day since! It had closed above the psychological $1300 every day since 2/12! …and above the 200 day since 2/14, which is now first resistance!!!. Jan. 2’s low was $1181.40 – A MULTI-DECADE LOW!!! Psych level: $1300 res, with technical res at the 200 day, $1301, then the 50 day, $1305, and the 40 day, $1319!!! Overnight slightly weaker and in inside session – thus far: currently $1294.30 unched.
Crude closed slightly higher a day after finally breaking above the 40/50 and 200 day m/a’s and hitting $102.24, highest since 3/10 and closed above par for a third straight day at $101.67 +.39 +$2.48 in three days! It has been back above $100 for five days following a high of $100.82 that ended in an ‘outside’ day – 200 day is $100.45. On 3/10, it had a high of $102.82 then plunged below the 200 day! 1/14’s low was worst since 5/2/13: $91.24! The record high of $114.83 was on 5/2/11, the low since on 10/4/11 is $74.95: $93.60 is the midpoint!!! Recent rally high and close are $110.70 and $110.53 respectively. First SUPPORT is now the 40 day ($100.48), then the 200 day ($100.45), with critical SUP at the 50 day $99.64. The recent range is $85.61-$112.24 since March 1, 2012. Overnight an inside session and is currently $101.43 -.24.
Global equity markets higher, ex-France…Korea en fuego!!! UK +0.3% vs +0.1% vs -0.6% vs +0.4% vs +1.2%; France -0.1% vs +0.4% vs -0.3% vs +1%! vs +1.5%; Germany +0.1% vs +0.9% vs -0.3% vs +1.3%!!! vs +1.6%; Japan +0.9% vs +0.5% vs +1%! vs +0.4% vs -0.4% vs +1.8%!!! Hang Seng +0.4% vs +1.1%! vs -0.2% vs +0.7% vs -0.5%; Korea +2.3%!!! vs +0.2% vs +0.7% vs +1.2%!!! vs -0.2%; India +0.2% vs +0.6% vs +0.5% vs +0.2% vs – vs +1.4%. U.S. equity futures higher but in a narrow range BUT all three GAPPED UP BIG at the open: DOW +80 (range 37!); SPX +8.90 (4.70); NDQ +21.50 (12!!!) – careful tiger…its QUARTEREND!!!
Hope you had a great weekend and a solid quarter – TB did both!!!