FOMC: What Elephant?

Over the last 20 years, we’ve seen two yield curve (2s10s) inversions: essentially all of 2000 and Dec 2005-May 2007.  The inversions themselves posed no issues for equity markets.  It was the dramatic unwinding of those inversions that produced crashes.Eight months ago, we almost had another.  2s10s had fallen to a trend line connecting those … continue reading →

Update on Gold: Apr 11, 2018

In our last major update [see: Jan 26 Update] we noted that gold, 1355 at the time, had reached the same price level at which it had frequently reversed.  Even though we’d had a bullseye at 1377-1380 for over a year, it had stopped short several times. GC is sitting just below the neckline of … continue reading →

The Market’s Latest “Lucky” Bounce

That’s a relief!  For months, pundits have been arguing whether the Fed needed to hike interest rates three times or four times this year — you know, because of all the growth coming down the pike. Fed Über-Dove and “Man Who Thinks Market Integrity is Overrated” Jim Bullard just announced that the correct number is … continue reading →

Does the Yield Curve Matter? A Closer Look

I called a top in SPX on May 20, 2015 [see: The Last Big Butterfly] because it was about to reach the 1.618 Fib extension at 2138 — our upside target from way back in 2012.  SPX peaked the following day and fell over 300 points before it was all over. What I didn’t notice … continue reading →

Why Rising Rates Are a Problem This Time

A sharp drop in interest rates has traditionally been a negative for stocks.  The chart below shows that most significant declines in 10-year yields over the years were associated with steep drops in the S&P 500.  Usually, equity losses precipitated the drops in yield.  As stock declines accelerate, money flows into bonds — raising prices … continue reading →

The Rally That VIX Built

As discussed yesterday, stocks spent the night building a cushion based on VIX (currently off 5.4%) in preparation for tomorrow’s FOMC announcement.  It started just before the close, yesterday, and has built to a 6-pt gain in the futures.Actually, it’s been less of a rally, lately, and more of an effort to maintain ES at … continue reading →

Fed Minutes: How Hawkish Are They?

Markets tend to moves higher on Fed minutes days, even if the news isn’t all that positive.  It’s all about convincing investors that the FOMC has their best interests at heart — that all they’re worried about is making sure that stocks continue to rally. Today’s session is slightly complicated, then, by ADP employment which came … continue reading →

Whistling Past the Graveyard

Only a couple of years ago, central bankers became adept at repairing the damage done to stocks after big shocks.  That changed with Brexit, when the strategy shifted to pushing stocks as high as possible before the damage was done… and, still doing all the requisite ramping after the fact. They perfected the technique after the … continue reading →