Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Lots Of Positive Reactions To Earnings

The market is higher this morning on the heels of lots of positive reactions to earnings reports.  I have often said that the most important thing is to see how stocks react to earnings to gauge sentiment and expectations.  The recent drop in many stocks ahead of earnings appears to have already priced in any subdued outlook, and that is allowing lots of stocks to bounce after reporting.

I see a lot more stocks rising on earnings than falling.  Here are some of the positive reactions: CHKP, INTC, USB, AGU, GWW, HON, WYNN, APH, SWK

Here are a few that are lower today: BAC, NTRS, STJ

In economic news, housing starts hit a rate of 760,000 units which was above consensus.

Overnight, most Asian markets were lower.  China was higher after a leading news journal suggested the PBOC should ease monetary policy further in order to foster growth.  In Europe most markets are higher this morning as there is a lull in news coming out of the eurozone.

Fed Chairman Bernanke is continuing his second day of testimony before Congress, and hasn't hinted at any additional QE around the corner.  The market doesn't seem too concerned so far.

The dollar index is higher, which is weighing on most commodities.  Gold prices are lower to $1580 while oil prices are slightly higher near $89.75.

The 10-year yield is flattish near 1.48%.  The recent rise in equities hasn't done much to boost yields yet.

As for the VIX, it is down another -1.5% to 16.25.  The last time it was this low was back in April just prior to the market peak and before a 10% correction. 

Trading comment: The market continues to push higher.  I had been worried about potential selloffs after earnings announcements, but so far most stocks are showing positive reactions following reporting.  The recent high in the S&P 500 was 1375.  Today we have already approached 1372, so if the 1375 level can be taken out that potentially opens the door to a run at the April highs.  Given my concerns that this rally has been led by defensive stocks, as opposed to classic growth stocks, I thought we would see more choppy trading.  That is still a possibility, but you have to respect the positive price action so far.

KAM Advisors has long positions in BAC, HON; short APH, SWK


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