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WHAT’S ON TAP?

The end of January is upon us and the action only picks up as the year gets going.  After the hammering stocks took last week it’s likely that data and earnings could take a backseat to policy news and the Bernanke reconfirmation.  In addition to a FOMC meeting, Bernanke’s reconfirmation vote is likely to take place at the end of the week and President Obama’s State of the Union address is on Wednesday evening.   It’s hard to imagine that stocks will rally into these major events.

Bernanke’s reconfirmation is likely as politicians cave to the popular idea that he saved the day last Fall (which couldn’t be farther from the truth) though uncertainty remains high.  If he is not reconfirmed the markets could take a beating as uncertainty increases.  I also expect President Obama to talk very tough on the financial sector in his address to the nation.  It’s hard to imagine he will have anything friendly to say.    As if that wasn’t enough there are also 136 S&P 500 firms reporting earnings.   Many of them will be market movers though the solid earnings season appears to be built into prices at this point.  Earnings have taken a backseat despite solid performance.  The data on the week is also heavy:

Monday –

Existing Home Sales  10:00 AM ET

Tuesday –

FOMC Meeting Begins

ICSC-Goldman Store Sales 7:45 AM ET

Redbook 8:55 AM ET

S&P Case-Shiller HPI 9:00 AM ET

Consumer Confidence 10:00 AM ET

State Street Investor Confidence Index 10:00 AM ET

Wednesday –

New Home Sales 10:00 AM ET

Tim Geithner Speaks 10:00 AM ET

EIA Petroleum Status Report 10:30 AM ET

FOMC Meeting Announcement 2:15 PM ET

Barack Obama Speaks 9:00 PM ET

Thursday –

Durable Goods Orders 8:30 AM ET

Jobless Claims 8:30 AM ET

EIA Natural Gas Report 10:30 AM ET

Friday –

GDP 8:30 AM ET

Employment Cost Index 8:30 AM ET

Chicago PMI 9:45 AM ET

Consumer Sentiment 9:55 AM ET

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