Once again, the search for the Dow “holy grail” was not there yesterday. In the narrowest intraday range in more than two years, it began with fast advance of 12 points up to 19,987 which was the exact intraday high on Tuesday. From this level it turned south and really spent the bulk of the day in nominally negative territory of around 15 points to the downside. On the other hand, the Dow is still poised for its best December performance since 2010 and its seventh straight weekly advance. To no one’s surprise, volume was much lighter than normal with the approach of the long holiday weekend.
Weighing on the market yesterday were lower readings for the real estate group. Financial shares have set the tone for the overall market lately, namely that when they are higher so are the major indices. The healthcare group is still one of the areas of the market that is overall lower this year.
There was a promising economic report which showed that November existing home sales rose by 15.4%, the largest gain in almost 10 years, which attests to the overall solidness of the housing market and by extension to the overall economy as well. It was the third such straight monthly increase in this item.
Today, the markets were lower with the Dow closing down 23 points, the S&P 500 off 4, and the NASDAQ lower by 23.
Today showed us several economic reports, the most important of which was the final revision to third-quarter G.D.P. This was changed upward to 3.5% from the previous 3.2%. It was the best reading since the third-quarter of 2014. The gain was primarily a function of greater consumer spending. Another important report today showed that November durable goods declined by 4.6% overall. However, this was strictly a function of plunging aircraft orders due to controversies about Boeing and the Air Force One production. On the other hand, the business investment component of the overall index did increase by 0.9%. Then there was November personal income which was unchanged and November personal spending which rose by less than expected at 0.2%. The November Index of Leading Economic Indicators was unchanged and weekly jobless claims made a large jump of 21,000 up to 275,000.
Bond yields were a little higher once again on the better G.D.P. report. The 10-year note is now back up to 2.56%, basically staying in the same old recent range that it has been locked into since the election and the Fed rate raising decision last week. The dollar is doing little, gold continues to slip at $1,130 while crude oil is higher at close to $52.65 barrel after yesterday’s decline.
Donald M. Selkin
These are excerpts from Don Selkin’s Daily Market Notes, updated and abbreviated with permission from the author. Don Selkin is the Chief Market Strategist at Newbridge Securities Corporation, member FINRA/SIPC and provides the Fair Value analysis for CNBC each morning. The commentary provided in this Market Letter is intended to provide our customers with timely market analysis and should not be considered a research report. This Market Letter may contain, and is limited to: Discussions of broad based indices; Commentaries on economic, political or market conditions; Technical analyses concerning the demand and supply for a sector, index or industry based in trading volume and price; Statistical summaries of multiple companies’ financial data, including listings of current ratings; and, Recommendations regarding increasing or decreasing holdings in particular industries or securities. This Market Letter does not make a financial or investment recommendation or otherwise promotes a product or service of the firm. This Market Letter contains only news, facts, and commentary on information previously reported from a news source believed to be accurate and reliable by the author. These news sources include the following: Bloomberg Financial, Reuters, and the Associated Press.