Friday, February 12, 2016

The Morning Call--Start building your wish list, but too soon to act

The Morning Call


I promised my wife that I would help her with her business (she is a florist) this weekend; so I am going to miss another Closing Bell.  Back on Tuesday (Market is closed Monday).

The Market

The indices (DJIA 15660, S&P 1829) had another high volume, high volatility day, lousy breadth day of major whackage.

   The Dow ended [a] below its 100 day moving average, now resistance, [b] below its 200 day moving average, now resistance, [c] below the lower boundary of a short term downtrend {16787-17523}, [c] below the lower boundary of its intermediate term trading range {15842-18295}; if it remains there through the close next Tuesday, it will reset to a downtrend, [d] in a long term uptrend {5471-19343}, [e] and still within a series of lower highs.

The S&P finished [a] below its 100 day moving average, now resistance, [b] below its 200 day moving average, now resistance [c] below the lower boundary of its short term downtrend {1900-1987}, [d] below the lower boundary of its intermediate term trading range for the fourth day, thereby resetting to a downtrend {1796-2053}, [e] in a long term uptrend {800-2161}  and [f] still within a series of lower highs. 

The long Treasury was up on huge volume.  Intraday, it traded above the upper  boundary of its newly reset short term uptrend as well as the upper boundary of its intermediate term trading range; however, it was unable to remain above either.  Nonetheless, it was still a strong performance.

 On another huge volume day, GLD was up 4%, closing [a] above the upper boundary of its short term trading range by a large enough percentage, that, on a distance basis, it confirmed a reset to an uptrend and [b] within an intermediate term trading range. 

            And (medium):

Bottom line:  the S&P has now reset to an intermediate term downtrend and the Dow is knocking on the door.  This pin action is clearly not good for stocks.  If the DJIA break of its intermediate term trading range is confirmed 14256/1576 is the next visible support level and after that 6382/1077.  All that said, stocks are now deep in oversold territory, so a rally is to be expected.



            Yesterday was another slow economic data day.  Only one number here: weekly jobless claims dropped more than anticipated.

            I indicated last week that I would likely revise our economic forecast this week; and so I have.  The new figures are:

Real Growth in Gross Domestic Product                     -1.25-+0.5%
                        Inflation (revised)                                                          0.5-1.5%
                        Corporate Profits (revised)                                            -15-0%

            Overseas, the Bank of Sweden took another step into negative interest rate territory, lowering key rates from -0.35% to -0.5%.  I continue to be amazed over the thought process of global central bankers, that is to say, I don’t understand how they can pursue a policy (QE) that hasn’t worked in seven years, then up the ante (negative interest rates) on a second policy that turns the whole notion of the banking system (borrow short at low rates [yes, negative rates are low; but the banks can’t impose a negative rate on deposits for fear of them.  So they have to pay some interest rate to customers while they are also paying a negative rate to the central bank, which on a relative basis is high] and lend long at higher rates) and turns it on its head.  I just can’t see how this ends well.

More on how negative interest rates impact both banks and depositors (medium):

            Great five minute video of an interview with a former BIS banker on QE and negative interest rates.

            ***overnight, the EU reported fourth quarter GDP growth of +0.3%; and Greece is failing, again.

            The other bit of central bank news was Yellen’s second day of congressional testimony; the only newsworthy item being that she wouldn’t rule out negative interest rates (see both above and below).

            The Fed’s double fallacy recovery (medium and today’s must read):

            The latest from Jim Grant on the Fed (medium):

Bottom line: one of the big risks that I discuss every week in the Closing Bell is ‘the potential negative impact of central bank money printing’.   This factor is now raising its ugly head in the form of investor realization that QE along with the current fad of negative interest rates haven’t worked, aren’t working and are actually harmful to the global financial system in particular the EU and Chinese banks.   I want to repeat that I don’t think the US banks will be wounded as badly as they were in 2008/2009.  Nonetheless, if one or more major foreign bank goes toes up, our banking system and our economy will not escape the fallout.

I am not suggesting that investors run for the hills.  It is likely too late to sell stocks that have been disappointments.  However, there is still room to take some profits in winners that have held up during this decline.

            Global stocks are on sale (medium):

            The latest from JP Morgan (medium):

       Subscriber Alert

            While our Portfolios are set up (lots of cash) to take advantage of lower prices, I think it is still too soon to begin Buying.  Indeed, I have been avoiding Adding a lot of new stocks to our Buy Lists to avoid the appearance of looking more optimistic than I have been.  However, I think in time to start Adding more stocks to our Buy Lists---with the caveat that all understand that our Portfolios are not Buying, just building the wish list.
       Investing for Survival
            The great thing about dividends—they grow.


   This Week’s Data

            January retail sales rose 0.2%, in line; ex autos, they were up 0.1%, also in line.

            January import prices declined 1.1% versus expectations of -1.4%; export prices fell 0.8% versus estimates of down 0.6%.


            OPEC will not blink (medium):

            Oil is not just a supply issue (short):

            Some stats on ‘excessive CEO pay’ (medium):



  International War Against Radical Islam

            The latest from George Soros on Russia and the EU (medium):

            More Syrian refugee problems for the EU (medium):

                        Syrian set to explode? (short);

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