Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Euro Can't Bounce, Despite Successful Debt Offerings

The market is a little higher in early trade, following positive action out of European markets this morning. There were successful debt offerings in both Greece and Italy, which improved sentiment in Europe. Additionally, Japan has pledged to support eurozone sovereign debt. Tomorrow, Germany and Portugal will conduct their own bond auctions.

Despite the solid auctions in Europe today, the euro can't muster much of a bounce, and remains down slightly vs. the dollar. This is not hurting commodities so far, as the price of oil is higher near $89.85 and gold prices are also up to $1382.

Alcoa (AA) kicked off earnings season last night, but its stock is slightly lower today. There are more earnings reports to come out this week, but earnings season really kicks into gear next week with more bellwether companies reporting.

I will be listening to hear management's tone about guidance, and if they're willing to get a little more constructive on the economy. I will also be watching how stocks react to earnings, since that is the most important factor when it comes to market news/data.

Asian markets were mixed overnight; the 10-year yield is higher to 3.34%; and the volatility index (VIX) is -2.4% so far back down to 17.12.

Trading comment: Yesterday was another example of this market bending but not breaking. The SPX came down towards that 1160 level again, but found support and bounced, closing down a little more than a point on the day. This sort of sideways consolidation has been a hallmark characteristic of the "stairstep" market, where gains get digested by a sideways move, and then the market moves higher after the digestion period. That could be what we are seeing again. I have been looking for more of a pullback, but the market doesn't seem to want to cooperate so far. Go figure.

long VIX


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