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“Someday computers will make us all obsolete.” – Bobby Fischer

Morning stock market summary

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The new month is kicking off on an even busier than normal note in terms of economic data.  At 8:30, we’ll get the usual weekly jobless claims reports which are both expected to rise modestly.  They will be joined with Non-Farm Productivity and Unit Labor Costs.  Then, since it’s the first day of the month, at 10 AM we’ll get the releases of Construction Spending and ISM Manufacturing.  Both reports are expected to show weakness relative to their prior readings, but the Prices Paid component of the ISM report is expected to slow falling from 60.0 down to 55.3.

Futures are lower heading into the opening bell which would put the S&P 500 on a five-day losing streak ever since Powell’s speech last Friday in Jackson Hole.  Outside of the US, international markets were also broadly weaker overnight and into this morning on hawkish central bank commentary and slowdown concerns related to another COVID lockdown in China impacting 21 million residents of Chengdu. The 10-year yield is slightly higher trading just shy of 3.2% and oil is lower.

We’ll discuss it in more detail later today, but with the market weakness since last Friday’s Jackson Hole speech, investor sentiment has really weakened.  A case in point is the weekly sentiment survey from the American Association of Individual Investors (AAII).  In this week’s update, bearish sentiment surged eight percentage points rising from 42.4% to 50.4%. While readings above 50% have been more common this year, in the history of the survey since 1987, less than 4% of weekly readings have been higher than this week’s level of bearish sentiment.

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