Midday Update - Earnings Season Starting With Mixed Results
Stocks are mixed in morning trade, with the Dow trading higher on a few earnings reports from its components with positive reactions. The Nasdaq is lower on the day as some tech stocks lag.
In economic news, the January Univ of Mich consumer sentiment survey showed a drop in sentiment to 80.4 from 82.5 in December. Also, housing starts rose in December and November's figures were revised higher. Homebuilding stocks are down today nonetheless.
Commodities are mixed with ag prices lower but gold higher near $1252 and oil prices up to $94.55
The 10-year yield is down a touch to 2.83%.
Stocks rising on earnings: AXP, GS, MS, SLB
Stocks falling on earnings: INTC, GE, COF
Asian markets were mostly lower overnight. Japan's household confidence survey declined to 41.3 from 42.5. And the People's Bank of China said it will use various liquidity management tools to adjust liquidity in order to maintain reasonable growth in credit.
European markets are higher. Great Britain's retail sales spiked 2.6%. And the EU is again considering a ban on proprietary trading for the largest banks.
Trading comment: Once again the markets bent a little this week and had a chance to break but didn't. That leaves the same folks who have been waiting for a bigger pullback in the market forced to make the tough choice of sitting on the sidelines longer or paying up to get involved in this market. We certainly do not expect the same low volatility stair-step market we saw in 2013, but in the near-term we could be in store for more new highs.