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“Swim upstream. Go the other way. Ignore the conventional wisdom.” – Sam Walton

Retail Sales were just released and came in much stronger than expected at the headline level (3.8% vs 2.0%).  Backing out Autos and Gas, the numbers were even stronger relative to expectations.  Last month’s report was revised lower than originally reported but not by enough to offset this month’s strength.  Other data released this morning includes Import and Export Prices, and both of those were also stronger than expected.  Still on the calendar today, we have Industrial Production (9:15), Capacity Utilization (9:15), Business Inventories (10:00), and Homebuilder Sentiment (10:00).  Then at 2 PM we’ll see a release of the Minutes from the January meeting.

Futures have seen a bit of a bounce in reaction to news but are still indicated to open modestly in the red.

Read today’s Morning Lineup for a recap of all the major market news and events from around the world, including the latest US and international COVID trends.

Yesterday was just the third time in 2022 that the S&P 500 tracking ETF (SPY) traded in positive territory from the opening to the closing bell, and over the last 50 trading days, there have been just eight times where the S&P 500 traded higher all day.  As recently as 2/1, though, the trailing number of times over the last 50 trading days that the SPY traded higher all day was at just six which was the lowest reading since March 2018.  What’s even more notable is that back in early December, just as Powell was retiring the term transitory, the 50-day reading of the number of trading days that SPY traded in positive territory for the entire trading day reached a record high of 20.  In other words, there’s been quite a reversal in the last three months where the market has frequently opened higher and stayed there to more a of choppy environment where the market has jumped between gains and losses throughout the trading day.

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