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Quote of the Day: “Investing should be more like watching paint dry or watching grass grow. If you want excitement, take $800 and go to Las Vegas.” – Paul Samuelson
Tell the above to the new breed of vintage 2020 traders. They want action and they want it now. Many of them would also probably gladly take $800 and go to Vegas or bet on sports instead, except they can’t! Futures have rallied off their recent lows following a strong read on initial and continuing jobless claims. Initial claims fell to their lowest levels since March (1.186 million) while continuing claims hit their lowest levels since April. Earnings remain the primary driver of stock action this morning both in Europe and the US and for today at least, the results and the stock price reactions haven’t been all that great. Lastly, headlines regarding any potential agreement (or disagreement) on a stimulus bill out of Washington will also cause back and forth swings.
Be sure to check out today’s Morning Lineup for a rundown of the latest stock-specific news of note, key earnings and economic news in Europe and the US, trends related to the COVID-19 outbreak, and much more.
The S&P 500 has now rallied 49% from its closing low on March 23rd, which is an exceptional rally by any standard. So, where does that leave us now, and how extended is the market? One way to measure this on a long-term basis is to compare the S&P 500’s price versus its 200-day moving average. Through yesterday’s close, the S&P 500 was 9% above its 200-DMA compared to a long term average of 2.4%. By this measure, the S&P 500 is more ‘extended’ than normal, but not really near extremes. Throughout history, the S&P 500 has been further above its 200-DMA on 22% of all trading days. More recently, in the last five years, we have also seen plenty of prior occurrences where the S&P 500 was at more extreme levels.