Monday, May 16, 2011

Monday Morning Musings

The market is slightly week this morning, while newsflow is relatively light to start the week. The big news over the weekend was the head of the IMF getting arrested in NY ahead of a eurozone ministers meeting today. While I would have expected that to weigh on the euro, the euro is higher today against the dollar.

Commodities are flattish, with oil prices slightly lower to $98.85 and gold prices also down a bit near $1494.

Among the sector funds, financials are strongest out of the gate so far while tech is mostly lagging.

Asian markets were lower overnight; the 10-year yield is steady near 3.18%; and the VIX is flat at 17.09.

Trading comment: The S&P 500 is still hovering in that 1335-1340 range that I have watching for support following the late April breakout and subsequent pullback. I expect the market to remain choppy around these levels, but so far the downside has been contained.

Among leadership, if you look at the defensive sectors like consumer staples (XLP) and healthcare (XLV), you can see that they have just experienced a period of significant outperformance. I would expect this bout of relative outperformance to give way to some sector rotation, but it remains to be seen which group with be the beneficiary of said rotation. It could be energy and materials once again, it could be tech, and there is an outside chance that financials catch a bid - but mostly just because sentiment is so negative for the group. Stay tuned.


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