Friday, December 03, 2010

Jobs Report Much Softer Than Expected

The November payrolls report was much weaker than expected, with just 39,000 payrolls added last month vs. expectations for 130,000. Also, the unemployment rate saw a surprising climb from 9.6% to 9.8%.

But one of the ways you know investors are in a forgiving mood lately is the reaction in the stock market. Normally, a disappointing jobs report could knock the market down 100 points at the open. But as I write this, the Dow is only down approx. 10 points, and the Nasdaq 100 is flat. That is pretty benign action, especially given that it follows 2 big up days in the market.

The dollar is lower on the jobs report, and also due to further strength in the euro amid diminished stress over sovereign debt and narrowing yield spreads on eurozone bond offerings. The lower dollar is helping commodities, with gold bouncing above the $1400 level and oil hovering at $88.00.

Among the sector ETFs, materials (+0.54%) are bucking the overall weakness and leading the action, while financials (-0.93%) are the big laggards so far.

The 10-year yield is lower to 2.96% currently, after briefly topping the 3.00% level earlier; and the volatility index (VIX) is down another -6% today, falling to 18.19.

Trading comment: The market leaders just don't quit here. Semis continue to act well also. I think performance anxiety could be a factor, as fund managers see the clock ticking on the year and are eager to add some performance wherever they can get it. So this means adding to your winners, and letting them run. Today's positive reaction to the jobs report supports the notion that the buy the dip mentality is in full force right now.

For those who are curious what some of the market leading names are, here is a partial list:
  • Apple (AAPL)
  • F5 Networks (FFIV)
  • VMWare (VMW)
  • Salesforce.com (CRM)
  • Coinstar (CSTR)
  • Illumina (ILMN)
  • Rovi Corp (ROVI)
  • OpenTable (OPEN)
  • Akamai (AKAM)
  • Acme Packet (APKT)
  • Riverbed Tech (RVBD)
  • Panera Bread (PNRA)
  • Chipolte Mexican Grill (CMG)
  • SXC Health (SXCI)
  • Freeport McMoran (FCX)
  • Priceline.com (PCLN)
  • Alexion Pharma (ALXN)
  • Netflix (NFLX)
  • Deckers (DECK)

long aapl, ffiv, vmw, crm, cstr, ilmn, rovi, open, apkt, pnra, sxci, alxn

2 Comments:

At 5:38 PM, Blogger Sean said...

November jobs report much softer than expected. In a story we've heard repeatedly for three years, companies are not hiring at anywhere near the rate.


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At 9:54 PM, Blogger Selina said...

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