September 12, 2011
Good morning. Last week, in a holiday-shortened week, the market experienced heightened volatility on both an inter-day and intra-day basis and closed lower on the week. The SPY was down 1.93 to close at 115.92 (1.6%), and had a low of 114.38 on Tuesday and a high of 120.94 (5.7% spread) on Thursday, before selling off solidly on Friday. The weakness was due to several factors, mainly news from Europe suggesting (due to local election results) that the party of Angela Merkel (strong supporters of European unity and help for struggling countries) was losing support.
August 29, 2011
Good morning. It was a nice bounce back rally for the market last week, with the SPY up 5.33 (4.8%) to close at 117.97. Volatility still reigned, however, with the market appearing unstable all week, seemingly always in anticipation of the next piece of news to affect the market. One of the big anticipated news items was the speech on Friday by Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke from the financial conference at Jackson Hole. It was in that very speech last year that he outlined some of the potential policy initiatives still on the table at that time, and shortly thereafter he announced the so-called Quantitative Easing II (QE II).
August 22, 2011
Good morning. It was yet another week of selling in the market, with the SPY finishing at its lowest level since Sep. 17, 2010 at 112.64, down 4% on the week. That number also represents a yearly decline of 10.4%, and at this point (based on Friday’s closing action) the market is not showing much sign of an impending bottom.
May 2, 2011
Good morning. It was another solid steady move to the upside last week, with the SPY rising 2.65 (2%) to close at 136.43. This move, again, comes under the general umbrella of lower dollar and higher commodity prices in line with the expansionary monetary policy being maintained by the Federal Reserve. Today we have the added bullish sentiment accompanying the raid on Osama Bin Laden’s compound in Pakistan, during which he and several companions were killed by U.S. Special Forces.
April 11, 2011
Good morning. The market was slow and virtually unchanged last week, with the SPY closing down a scant .28 at 132.86. The VIX was up slightly (.48) to close at a still relatively low 17.39. There was a little more movement in interest rates, with the 30-year bond rate up.15% to close at 4.63%.