Showing posts with label PPI. Show all posts
Showing posts with label PPI. Show all posts

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Housing, US Dollar, Gold, PPI and Inflation

Housing, US Dollar, Gold, PPI and InflationSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend
Frank Barbera

The current downturn in Housing, the worst since the Great Depression has along way to run, with home prices likely to experience downside pressure well into 2009. Overall, a 30% to 40% price decline in high end homes is needed to bring prices back into line with incomes and clear the market. At the same time, the mortgage loan problem, goes far beyond Sub-Prime and will likely end up running into the Trillions of dollars, with the best estimates between2 to 3 Trillion dollars of defaulting bad paper. That's more than enough downside risk in the credit market to bring the US Financial System to the tip of a very deep solvency crisis, where several large institutions will probably fold. As a result, we continue to see the large scale credit contraction now underway deepening throughout 2008 with the Federal Reserve likely forced to continue to lower ratings despite a stagflationary economic condition, one in which yr/yr PPI is now running at the highest levels seen since 1981. The US Dollar is likely heading for a major currency crisis, with a devaluation likely in the year ahead. Gulf State PetroDollar currencies have now moved well off their pegs, as has the Chinese Yuan and HK Dollar. A currency crisis of epic proportions lies ahead, and with it will come soaring long term rates and crashing US Stock Market. For the S&P, a collapse back down toward the 2002-2003 lows near 800 is very likely the next primary direction, with all sectors of the equity market including Gold Stocks vulnerable to this decline. Post a crash type outcome, Gold Stocks are very likely to become the next great capital market mania, as broad scale monetization will be needed to reinflate both the capital markets and the US economy, which is already in a recession. The final outcome, over the next few years,will be more money printing, more currency debasement and in the end, most likely runaway inflation which will help Uncle Sam eliminated his bad debts. Gold and Precious Metals will be one of the few investments able to protect valuable savings and hard earned capital during this time, and we see the price of Gold heading for $10,000 or higher in the next 5 to 7 years, with price of Silver likely to move toward $500 to $1,000 per ounce. The upside explosion in Precious Metals following a serious banking collapse will leave onlookers with a truly once in a lifetime, -- jaw dropping experience, once the metals go higher, they will be going, going gone, right out of the park, as all central banks will also need to print money to keep currency relationships in some degree of balance and protect export advantages. Today, the world is confronted with a camouflaged 'fixed' global currency system masquerading as thematically free floating currency system, held together by currency derivatives and unchecked financial leveraging. The current death of high end Wall Street Finance signals the end of the leveraged speculating era and financial engineering.As the world lurches toward a truly floating exchange rate mechanism, currency volatility will infect consumer prices for basic manufactured goods which in time, will morbidly begin moving around as if tradeable using RSI and that climate, the only asset one will want to truly own, will be precious metals. It is very regrettable that the excess of the last decade is likely to create these kinds of extreme economic conditions, and probably at no time in decades, has the average individual been at greater economic risk.The entire universe of paper money is sure to continue debasing against the universe of scarce and depleting commodities in a theme that will likely continue to play out over the next 10 to 15 years, while I hope I am dead wrong,I fear we are heading into very trying times...

Saturday, May 12, 2007

HOTS Weekly Options Commentary

HOTS Weekly Options CommentarySocialTwist Tell-a-Friend
Peter Stolcers

The market is seeking a catalyst. 10 days ago the S&P 500 was at this same level. In that time we have seen a decent round of earnings and they have exceeded expectations. With most of the numbers "in", the earnings growth rate is over 6%. That should be enough to sustain the uptrend. As I mentioned last week, I expected choppy trading and a negative reaction to the Fed’s unchanged rhetoric. The initial bullish reaction was reversed Thursday and the market also took issue with the weak retail sales numbers. Over 80% of the retailers missed their sales numbers. Friday, we got a bit of inflation relief from the PPI. The core inflation rate increased a modest .7%. In the grand scheme of things, the market is just chopping around looking for a piece of news that it can sink its teeth into. One day the economic releases show strength; the next day they show weakness. Another day the releases show rising inflation and the next day they show a decline. Now that the earnings season has ended, the market will place greater weight on the week to week economic releases. These knee-jerk reactions will mean little and the market will zigzag until it has something substantial to digest.

Per normal there is a chance that we will wake up Monday morning and read about a new merger. M&A will kick start the week and given the recent rally, the path of least resistance is up. The market is also likely to benefit from bullish option expiration activity. It's easy at this juncture to get lulled into thinking that the market can only go higher.

This is a time to be cautious. The market is "sleepwalking" its way higher. Thursday we saw the dramatic affect that one negative piece of information can have on prices. It will take two or three consecutive pieces of information to topple this market. We will use a series of lower closes and a technical breakdown as our guide. In today's chart you can see that minor support held Friday. The uptrend from March is also still intact. The steeper and shorter term the trend line, the easier it is to violate. I don't give this trend line as much credence as I do the horizontal support levels at SPY 148 and SPY 146. This week I have a very unique stock to add. I went fishing and once I reeled in the catch, I liked what I saw.

Friday, May 11, 2007

Equity Index Update

Equity Index UpdateSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend
Brad Sullivan

The index markets suffered through a day of consistent selling to settle sharply lower on the session. Key short term support levels were violated in most of the indices, particularly the SPM7 which fell below the key 1507 to 1504 support zone and could not muster any sustained buying when retesting that area. Today’s action will be influenced, on the open at least, by the PPI and Retail Sales reports. PPI came in better than anticipated on the core rate (I wish I could exclude food and energy costs each month as well) and Retail Sales was on the disappointing end of the spectrum. That being said, the Retail Sales figure is likely to be discounted as the market will give the consumer the benefit of the doubt for a couple of more months…however, on a longer term basis, this reading is worth putting in your files as a potential turn in the consumer. The PPI reading continues to show elevated levels in food pricing and I know that it cost me $80 to fill up my car the other day, yet the marketplace continues to downplay any meaningful impact on the economy from these pricing pressures. It reminds me of the quote I used the other day…FOCUS ON WHAT THE MARKET IS PAYING ATTENTION TO, NOT WHAT YOU WANT IT TO PAY ATTENTION TO. Right now, in my opinion, the marketplace is focusing on the supply shrinkage in the equity market due to private equity takeovers and global liquidity. Until these underpinnings slow or stop, this market will continue to be firm…with hiccups along the way.

The question today is this…was yesterday’s hiccup on the downside the beginning of something more? As I have written this past week, nearly all of my readings are at extended levels and it provided a good entry to flatten longs or establish a moderate short line. One of two scenarios play out from these readings…a sharp drop of nearly -4 to -5% or a moderate drop of around -2% that turns into a trading range just underneath recent highs. Right now I am leaning to the trading range scenario, but that could change with a shift in any key inputs – particularly Euro/Yen and Dollar/Yen. I will continue to use these pairs as key barometers for index trading.

Here are the levels I am looking at for today’s session in the SPM contract. Resistance will be found between 1502.50 and 1504 in a moderate and choppy zone type of trade…above this is the key 1504 to 1507 zone. Only a 30 minute close above this zone will begin the reversal process from yesterday’s downside damage. If we do get a close above this zone, I would shift to playing from the long side – HOWEVER, be prepared for probing BACK into the 04-07 zone. In other words, the 30 minute close gives the signal but the odds are you can get better pricing by being in 04-07 zone than outside it with a little patience. On the downside…Support will range from 1499 to 1497.50. Below this level, look for some spike moves lower towards 1495 and 1494.50. Only a 30 minute close below this zone will produce more selling…in the interim I would look for program type spikes lower that would generate trading into the 1491 area.


Finally, keep in mind one fact and that is that Friday trading has been extremely quiet the past several weeks…is it time for a change? I have included a chart showing the 30 minute closes in SPM7 since May 1st. Notice the failure to get back above 1504…interesting.

Monday, April 9, 2007

Bond Market

Bond MarketSocialTwist Tell-a-Friend
Sally Limantour

Friday’s non farm payrolls number was a bit of a shock and has dashed any hopes of a rate cut in the near future. Revisions of the past two months were strong and the unemployment rate fell to 4.4% matching a low back in May 2001. Interesting too was the strong leap in construction employment in an industry that has negative headlines on a daily basis. Remember that February’s number was quite negative and the 56,000 new jobs created in March construction is most likely an adjustment. The important thing is the trend and the direction for the past three months in construction employment is still down.

As of April 3rd the COT report showed the spec and fund combined net short position of
126,351 bond contracts. We have to assume this position is larger as the market is a full point lower now and it will be important to see the COT report this Tuesday. The 109 level I have been looking for in the Treasury bond futures (USM7) is close at hand and although the COT reflects a large short position amongst the spec community, bond prices can still go lower before a good bounce. In fact, many times I have seen bond prices move an additional 3-4 points even with an extreme COT position.
Talk of interest rate cuts will now be on the back burner as the Fed will remain on hold. Inflation is ticking up and having just returned from the Bahamas where I attended the Natural Resource Summit of the Americas, I am still convinced we are in a major bull market in commodities and this sector will outperform. It is both a supply and demand issue in many of the raw materials and we should see opportunities ahead in the base metals, precious metals, molybdenum (try saying that word three times fast) uranium, energy, alternative energy, water supplies and food. This is a theme I will continue to cover and focus on both in futures and the natural resource stocks.

Looking ahead in bond land this is a slow data driven week with the biggest news coming on Wednesday as the FOMC releases the minutes from March 21. Following this we have Chicago Fed Moskow speak about the US economy, then Thursday’s chain store sales and Friday’s report of the PPI, the Uni. of Michigan Consumer Sentiment and the international trade numbers for February. It is not inconceivable for the 30 year Treasury bonds to trade back to long term support at 108.00.

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