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21Dec2016 Market Update: US Stock Indexes Lower And Put Damper On Dow Reaching 20K, Crude Prices Fall Sharply, US Dollar Stable

Written by Gary

Wall Street lower (SPY -0.1%) entering the afternoon session after the National Association of Realtors reports sales of existing single-family homes rose 0.7%. Crude prices declined today (WTI 52.34), falling to the lowest levels of the session. Short-term indicators neutral to bearish.


Here is the current market situation from CNN Money

North and South American markets are lower today with shares in Brazil off the most. The Bovespa is down 0.28% while U.S.'s S&P 500 is off 0.11% and Mexico's IPC is lower by 0.09%.

Traders Corner - Health of the Market

Index Description Current Value
Investors.com Members Sentiment: % Bullish (the balance is Bearish) 74%
CNN's Fear & Greed Index Above 50 = greed, below 50 = fear 75
Investors Intelligence sets the breath Above 50 bullish 67%
StockChart.com Overbought / Oversold Index ($NYMO) anything below -30 / -40 is a concern of going deeper. Oversold conditions on the NYSE McClellan Oscillator usually bounce back at anything over -50 and reverse after reaching +40 oversold. 23.88
StockChart.com NYSE % of stocks above 200 DMA Index ($OEXA200R) $NYA200R chart below is the percentage of stocks above the 200 DMA and is always a good statistic to follow. It can depict a trend of declining equities which is always troubling, especially when it drops below 60% - 55%. Following a major market correction, the conditions for safe re-entry are when:
a) Daily $OEXA200R rises above 65%
Secondary Bullish Indicators:
a) RSI is POSITIVE (above 50)
b) Slow STO is POSITIVE (black line above red line)
c) MACD is POSITIVE (black line above red line)
79%
StockChart.com NYSE Bullish Percent Index ($BPNYA) Next stop down is ~57, then ~44, below that is where we will most likely see the markets crash. 71%
StockChart.com S&P 500 Bullish Percent Index ($BPSPX) In support zone and rising. ~62, ~57, ~45 at which the markets are in a full-blown correction. 71%
StockChart.com 10 Year Treasury Note Yield Index ($TNX) ten year note index value 25.44
StockChart.com Consumer Discretionary ETF (XLY) As long as the consumer discretionary holds above [66.88], all things being equal, it is a good sign for stocks and the U.S. economy 83.58
StockChart.com NYSE Composite (Liquidity) Index ($NYA) Markets move inverse to institutional selling and this NYA Index is followed by Institutional Investors 11,163

Looking at the last three columns, the first one (Actual), is what was reported this morning. The second column (Forecast) is what analysts had forecast and the third column is the previous report. Full calendar HERE.

What Is Moving the Markets

Here are the headlines moving the markets.

U.S. existing home sales rise to near 10-year high

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. home resales unexpectedly rose in November, reaching their highest level in nearly 10 years, likely as buyers rushed into the market to lock in mortgage rates in anticipation of further increases in borrowing costs.

Wall Street little changed in muted pre-holiday trading

(Reuters) - U.S. stocks were little changed in muted pre-holiday trading on Wednesday as investors paused, a day after the Nasdaq Composite and the Dow Jones Industrial Average hit record highs.

Trump weighs 'half-blind' trust option for businesses: Politico

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. President-elect Donald Trump's transition team is considering the use of discretionary trusts to avoid conflicts of interest for Trump family members or administration officials, Politico reported on Wednesday.

Actelion re-enters talks with J&J in takeover twist

ZURICH (Reuters) - The takeover battle surrounding Actelion heated up on Wednesday when the Swiss biotech company said it had begun exclusive talks with former suitor Johnson & Johnson about a "strategic transaction".

Hyundai's top U.S. executive resigns

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Hyundai Motor Co's top U.S. executive Dave Zuchowski has resigned effective immediately and has been replaced on an interim basis by the company's general counsel, a company spokesman said Wednesday.

FINRA fines Wells Fargo, others $14 million for records' changeable format

NEW YORK (Reuters) - The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority said it fined several Wells Fargo & Co businesses, RBC Capital Markets, LPL Financial and others a combined $14.4 million on Wednesday for record-keeping problems that may have allowed company and customer documents to be altered.

A volatile calm - the paradox of 2016 financial markets

LONDON (Reuters) - Traditional measures of volatility at historic lows and Wall Street stocks at new record highs went hand-in-hand in 2016 with traders fretting about bouts of wild stock-price swings and currency flash-crashes.

Goldman Sachs to pay $120 million over attempted ISDAFIX benchmark manipulation

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Goldman Sachs Group Inc will pay a $120 million penalty to resolve civil charges that it attempted to manipulate a global benchmark for interest rate products known on Wall Street as "ISDAFIX," U.S. derivatives regulators said Wednesday.

Exclusive: Investors shun Italian bank Monte Paschi's share offer - sources

MILAN (Reuters) - Ailing Italian bank Monte dei Paschi di Siena has all but failed to pull off a privately funded rescue plan, unable to find investors to take up its share offer at the 11th hour, and a state bailout now looks inevitable, sources said on Wednesday.

Baby Boomers Increasingly Having Social Security Checks Garnished To Cover Student Loan Payments

According to a new report from the Government Accountability Office, the federal government is increasingly garnishing Social Security benefits to help cover student loans payments owed by baby boomers. According the Wall Street Journal, a total of $1.1 billion has been garnished since 2001 with $171 million being collected in 2015 alone.

The government has collected about $1.1 billion from Social Security recipients of all ages to go toward unpaid student loans since 2001, including $171 million last year, the Government Accountability Office said Tuesday. Most affected recipients in fiscal year 2015—114,000—were age 50 or older and receiving disability benefits, with the typical borrower losing about $140 a month. About 38,000 were above age 64.

The report highlights the sharp growth in baby boomers entering retirement with student debt, most of it borrowed years ago to cover their own educations but some used to pay for their children's schooling. Overall, about seven million Americans age 50 and older owed about $205 billion in federal student debt last year. About 1 in 3 were in default, raising the likelihood that garnishments will increase as more boomers retire.

"I believe this is the tip of the iceberg of what may be to come if we don't work harder on this problem," said Sen. Claire McCaskill of Missouri, the top Democrat on the Senate Special Committee on Aging.

U.S. Economic Confidence Surges To The Highest Level That Gallup Has Ever Recorded

Submitted by Michael Snyder via The Economic Collapse blog,

Gallup's U.S. Economic Confidence Index has never been higher than it is today. The "Trumphoria" that has gripped the nation ever since Donald Trump's miraculous victory on election night shows no signs of letting up. Tens of millions of Americans that were deeply troubled by Barack Obama's policies over the last eight years are feeling optimistic about the future for the first time in a very long time. And it is hard to blame them, because what we have already seen happen since November 8th is nothing short of extraordinary. The stock market keeps hitting record high after record high, the U.S. dollar is now the strongest that it has been in 14 years, and CEOs are personally promising Trump that they will bring jobs back to the United States. These are things worth getting excited about, and so it makes perfect sense that Gallup's U.S. Economic Confidence Index has now risen to the highest level that Gallup has ever seen...

Americans' confidence in the economy continues to gradually strengthen after last month's post-election surge. Gallup's U.S. Economic Confidence Index averaged +10 for the week ending Dec. 18, marking another new high in its nine-year trend.

The latest figure is up slightly from the index's

Gold ETF Holdings Drop For Record 28 Straight Days

While demand for physical gold is soaring in India and China (with premiums near record highs)...

Bloomberg reports that the last time ETF investors were net buyers of gold was the day Hillary Clinton conceded victory to U.S. President-elect Donald Trump. Holdings have dropped for 28 straight days, the longest run since the ETF's creation in 2004.

Investors have slashed holdings by 11 percent to about 1,787 metric tons in the period, exacerbating a decline in prices...

But as financial conditions deteriorate once again, gold has decoupled (for now)...

And finally we note that as Bitcoin soars, it feels like deja vu all over again from late last year...

100,000 Bounty Offered For "Dangerous And Armed" Berlin Attacker; Europe-Wide Police Alert Issued

Update 2: German authorities issued a Europe-wide police alert naming 23-year-old Anis Amri as a suspect in the case, describing him as "dangerous and armed."

Meanwhile, according to the suspect's father and security sources, Tunisia's Radio Mosaique reported that Anis Amri left Tunisia seven years ago as an illegal immigrant and spent time in prison in Italy.

The radio reported on its website that security sources had named the suspect as Anis Amri from Oueslatia in rural central Tunisia. He served four years in jail in Italy on accusations of burning a school, it said. The father told the radio station that his son left for Germany a year ago.

* * *

Update: Germany has offered a 100,000 bounty for any information leading to the suspect's arrest during a Europe-wide manhunt across the border-free area.

Germany's police is offering up to 100,000 euros for any information that would lead to the arrest of Anis Amri, the #BerlinAttack suspect. pic.twitter.com/YW8cDnH2vV

— dwnews (@dwnews) December 21, 2016

* * *

Storm clouds are gathering for Angela Merkel who, in the aftermath of Monday's tragic Berlin truck attack said that "it would be particularly repulsive if a refugee, seeking protection in Germany, was the perpetrator." According to th ...

The Highly Charged Way to Play Electric Cars

Utilities have received little attention compared with companies like Tesla in the electric vehicle revolution. It presents them with both an opportunity and a burden.

Property Investors Need to Step Out of Their Comfort Zone

The future of property could be niche. Specialist buildings typically offer higher returns than the old staples of commercial property investment.

U.S. Is Now the Problem Market for Swiss Watchmakers

Swiss watch exports to the crucial U.S. market are worsening even as Hong Kong shows signs of recovery.

The New York Post: Pension fund manager busted in drug-fueled pay-to-play scheme

A portfolio manager who oversaw New York state's massive $184 billion pension fund took bribes including drug-fueled trips to Montreal and tickets to see Paul McCartney in exchange for steering investments to two firms, authorities charged Wednesday.

This superdad flew to Spain to buy a Hatchimal for his child before Christmas

The race to buy this year's hottest toy just went to the next level.

Market Extra: As Dow teases 20,000, stock-market pundit says don't play it safe in cash

Has Wall Street hit peak stock-market elation? Exuberance has the Dow Jones Industrial Average on the brink of breaching a milestone of 20,000—a level it has never hit before.

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To contact me with questions, comments or constructive criticism is always encouraged and appreciated:

gary@econintersect.com

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