Commodities Continue To Power Ahead
The market is slightly higher in early trading, after a solid session yesterday. The leading sectors so far today are energy and materials, as a weak dollar today is boosting commodity prices.
Oil prices topped $66 this morning, new highs for this year. Gold is also higher, near the $975 level, but this is still below the year's highs that were reached in February. Financial stocks are taking a breather, which I would view as healthy.
In economic news, Q1 GDP estimates were revised to show that the economy shrank at a -5.7% rate, which is less bad than the original -6.1% estimate, but it was still below expectations (-5.5%).
In corporate news, solid earnings reports from DELL and Jcrew (JCG) are boosting those stocks.
Asian markets gained overnight, after industrial production in Japan rose, and India reported GDP in that country grew +5.8%; the 10-year yield has backed off to 3.55% after spiking as high as 3.75% yesterday. Mortgage hedging has been cited as one of the drivers the last couple of days in the bond market; and the VIX is still floating just above that 30 level, currently down -2.3% to 30.94.
Trading comment: Volume rose on the NYSE yesterday, making for a nice accumulation day for the SPX on yesterday's bounce. The SPX continues to consolidate, and trade within a broad range. Of course, at some point the market will likely breakout of this range. That is how markets often work, they thrust, then pause to catch their breath, then thrust again. Let's just hope its on the upside.
Yesterday I bought IBM in client accounts. The stock still looks cheap relative to the upwardly revised earnings estimates. Also, IBM has a big stock buyback, which should support the shares on a pullback. I took some partial profits in CLR this morning, even as I still like the oil service stocks. This sector is volatile, so I would look to buy back the shares I sold on a pullback.
long CLR, IBM