This year has been remarkable for its lack of volatility. One reason is that VIX has closed 18 times below 10 this year. Since 1990, that has only happened a total 36 times. The “worst” decline this year for the S&P 500 has been less than 3% and this compares to the average drawdown of 11%. Therefore, for the first half of the year, the market has shown the second lowest level of downside stress in history.
The markets were humming along today comfortably adding gains until Senate GOP leader McConnell called for a delay of the big health care vote. Then, they tumbled in the last 1/2 hour with all three major indices going into the red. At the close, the DOW lost 98 points, the S&P 500 dropped 19, and the NASDAQ lost 100.
Earnings reports continue this week for those companies whose fiscal second-quarter ended in May. Reports up ahead include: Wednesday – GIS, MON; Thursday – Dow component NKE, MU, STZ and CAG.
The stocks doing well in the early going today were the financials on a large jump in interest rates. The 10-year Treasury Note was up to 2.20% on a statement from E.C.B. President Mario Draghi. He said that the headwinds to inflation are “temporary” and that the economic reverie is “broadening” in that part of the world.
Federal Reserve chair Janet Yellen spoke in London. The markets took another down direction after her comments…which we will summarize in tomorrow’s notes. The Republicans pulled the health care bill from what was supposed to be a vote on Friday due to its unpopularity among the public and also because they do not have the votes to pass it. This is leading some investors to doubt the rest of their agenda, especially tax cuts.
For some reason, the dollar was weaker with the Euro at 1.13 and the Japanese yen a little weaker against the greenback. Gold finished higher at $1,248 an ounce and crude oil gained almost 1% to close at $43.80 a barrel.
Donald M. Selkin
These are excerpts from Don Selkin’s Daily Market Notes, abbreviated and updated 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 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.