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“Unlike the mediocre, intrepid spirits seek victory over those things that seem impossible.” – Ferdinand Magellan

Morning stock market summary

Below is some introductory commentary of today’s Morning Lineup.  Start a two-week trial to Bespoke Premium to get full access.  

Futures are lower across the board this morning, but the magnitude of the implied losses is extremely small with the Nasdaq leading the way lower, and it’s only down 0.25%.  On the economic calendar today, we’ll get Case Shiller Housing data at 9 AM and then Consumer Confidence and the Richmond Fed report at 10 AM. In Europe, most equity benchmark indices are also lower, but again, the magnitude of the losses is generally modest as only France’s CAC 40 is down over 0.5%. Overall, there has been little conviction in markets since Thanksgiving.

Is the paint dry yet?  As you might expect for a shortened session after Thanksgiving, trading activity was very slow last Friday.  More surprising, though, was the fact that yesterday’s trading was extremely quiet as well.  Putting the two together, the S&P 500’s percentage spread between the intraday high and the intraday low over the last two trading days has just totaled 0.31%.

In terms of how this two-day spread stacks up over time, the chart below shows the S&P 500’s rolling two-day trading range over the last five years.  The last two days rank as the narrowest spread of the entire post-Covid era, and you have to go back to Christmas Eve 2019 to find a narrower range over a two-day period.  With a narrow range like that, is it any wonder why the VIX is trading under 13?  What’s that saying about dull markets again?

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