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A Relentless Decay

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).

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A Smörgåsbord of Issues

July 11, 2011


Good morning. Despite Friday’s surprise poor numbers from the Labor Department the SPY still managed a positive week, closing up .49 at 134.40 (.4%). That small move up maintained the very strong 5.6% move up from the week before, when really the market could have had some serious losses on Friday. The Thursday ADP numbers (private sector jobs) showed a very strong 157,000 advance, causing many to revise estimates of the governmental numbers on Friday to well over 100,000, and had many thinking the surprisingly bad number of May would be revised upward.

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Rationally Bearish on Bonds

May 9, 2011


Good morning. It was a very interesting week last week for investors, especially those who either trade commodities or have used security ETFs to gain exposure (chase returns) into the commodity area. The SPY was down 2.23 (1.6%) to close at 134.20, not a very significant amount given the recent rally, but the VIX, possibly seeing what can happen when sellers arrive and longs are forced out, was up a whopping 25% to close at 18.39.

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Floating Them Trillions

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%.

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Economics 101

September 13, 2010


Good afternoon. It was a second in a row up week for the market last week, with the SPY advancing .59 to close at 111.48 (.5%). It was significant because the market was able to hold and consolidate the large gains of the week before, leaving the SPY up a strong 4.3% for the two-week period. The VIX was actually up slightly (3%) last week but still showed a large drop of 10% for the two-week period, closing at 21.98.

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