Stocks experienced a rare down day today as a series of fears swept over the markets. The day was a damaging one from a technical and fundamental perspective. Volume was again very heavy. This was third huge volume distribution day in just the last two weeks. Breadth was negative at 3:1. While the overall recovery appears well intact, investors are increasingly fearful with regards to the near-term outlook. Concerns over European sovereign debt, bank regulation, the White House’s war on Wall Street, weak Chinese markets, record high bullish sentiment and a lack of positive near-term catalysts has some investors wondering if we haven’t come too far too fast.
From Daily Futures:
The U.S. Commerce Department said that real GDP was up .8% in the first quarter of 2010 and up 2.5% from a year ago, slightly less than expected. The June U.S. T-bonds are steady to higher.
The University of Michigan’s index of consumer sentiment increased from 69.5 to 72.2 in the latter half of April, better than expected.
The Chicago Purchasing Managers Index increased from 58.8 to 63.8 in April, better than expected.
Grains and Cotton
The midwestern U.S. has a relatively dry forecast for the next ten days, favorable for getting the corn and soybeans planted. July corn closed up 6.25 cents at $3.752, the highest close in five weeks.
June hogs jumped up 2.50 cents to 86.32 with ongoing support from better world demand and fewer inventories of U.S. and Canadian hogs.
After the close, the USDA estimated this week’s beef production at 499.4 million pounds, down 2% from a year ago. Pork production was estimated at 414.2 million pounds, down .7% from a year ago. June cattle were up .35 at 94.22.
Was $1.30 low enough to stop the selliing? July coffee ended up .0070 at $1.3530, the third consecutive day higher.
The White House announced that there will be no new drilling for oil in the U.S. until a review of the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico is conducted. June crude oil finished up .98 at $86.15.
Gold prices seem to benefit from both sides of Europe’s problems lately. Today, June gold closed up $11.90 at $1,180.70, the highest close this year with help from a slightly weaker dollar.
Japan’s Statistics Bureau said that consumer prices were down 1.1% in March from a year ago. The unemployment rate increased from 4.9% to 5.0% in March, the first increase in five months. Industrial production was up .3% in March. The Bank of Japan met and kept the interest rate unchanged at .1% with ongoing concerns about deflation. The June yen is steady.
Statistics Canada said that real GDP was up .3% in February and up 1.8% from a year ago, less than expected. Also, Canada’s Finance Department said the federal government posted a budget deficit of C$902 million in February, the lowest monthly deficit in a year. The June Canadian dollar is trading lower.
The June euro is steady to higher again on hopes that Europe will have a solution for Greece’s debt problems.
Spain’s National Statistics Institute said that the unemployment rate increased from 18.8% to 20.1% in the first quarter of 2010,
Mr. Roche is the Founder and Chief Investment Officer of Discipline Funds.Discipline Funds is a low fee financial advisory firm with a focus on helping people be more disciplined with their finances.
He is also the author of Pragmatic Capitalism: What Every Investor Needs to Understand About Money and Finance, Understanding the Modern Monetary System and Understanding Modern Portfolio Construction.