Monday, May 7, 2018

Monday Morning Chartology


The Morning Call

5/7/18

The Market
         
    Technical

            The S&P’s chart remains amazingly symmetric, touching both the lower and upper boundaries of the narrowing pennant formation last week but remaining within the pattern.  The technical conclusion is that a break in either direction will have significant follow through.



            TLT spent the entire week trying to generate sufficient momentum to continue the bounce of the lower boundary of its long term uptrend; but all it could do was trade in a tight range.  More importantly, if there was growing support for lower rates, it should have been able to close that obvious overhead price gap that occurred two weeks ago.  Clearly, it has been unable to do so, thus far.  The longer that lasts, the stronger the implications for further downside in TLT prices (rising rates).



            The dollar continues its relentless drive upwards.  While it blew through its 100 and 200 day moving averages without so much as a pause, it still faces major resistance from the upper boundary of a recently reset intermediate term.  Given its inverse correlation with TLT, a test of that upper boundary should coordinate roughly with TLT’s challenge of the lower boundary of its long term uptrend.



            In the last two weeks, GLD has responded basically as it has conventionally: a falling TLT (higher rates) and a stronger dollar generally means lower gold prices.  And like TLT and UUP it is near technical levels (lower boundary of its short term trading range and its 200 day moving average) that if broken would signal a change in regime.



            The VIX traded with a huge price range on Friday, challenging its 200 day moving average (now support) and the lower boundary of its short term trading range but failing. It remained below its 100 day moving average (now resistance).  Its bias is to the downside, suggesting more upside for stocks.



    Fundamental

       Headlines

            Last week’s economic data was mixed but the primary indicators were negative. Score: in the last 134 weeks, forty-five were positive, sixty-three negative and twenty-six neutral.  That supports my forecast of sluggish US economic growth despite the removal of regulatory obstacles.  Not helping is (1) what seems to be turning into a slowdown in ‘global synchronized growth’, (2) fiscal policy that is irresponsible in its extreme [raising the budget deficit at a point of peak economic activity] and (3) a Fed that has grown its balance sheet to roughly $4 trillion---which will either run off or be sold.  Either way it makes financing a huge budget deficit all the more difficult.

            This is not environment conducive to rising stock prices, in particular, if prices are already at record highs.  

            The dividend yield scare (short):

    News on Stocks in Our Portfolios
 
Ecolab (NYSE:ECL) declares $0.41/share quarterly dividend, in line with previous.

Illinois Tool Works (NYSE:ITW) declares $0.78/share quarterly dividend, in line with previous.

V.F. Corp (NYSE:VFC): Q1 EPS of $0.67 beats by $0.02.
Revenue of $3.05B (+22.0% Y/Y) beats by $150M.      

EOG Resources (NYSE:EOG): Q1 EPS of $1.19 beats by $0.19.
Revenue of $3.7B (+41.8% Y/Y) beats by $190M.


Economics

   This Week’s Data

      US

     International

            May EU investor confidence was 19.2 versus the April reading of 19.6.

            March German industrial orders fell 0.9% versus expectations of a rise of 0.5%.

    Other
               
                Update on big four economic indicators (medium):

What I am reading today

           

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