Tuesday, April 9, 2013

No Hiring Planned - NFIB

The National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB) survey indicates that no hiring is planned.
"After another false start, small business confidence has sputtered and stalled again. For the sector that produces half the private GDP and employs half the private sector workforce -- the fact that they are not growing, not hiring, not borrowing and not expanding like they should be, is evidence enough that uncertainty is slowing the economy. Virtually no owners think the current period is a good time to expand...Overall, it appears that there will be little growth coming from the small business half of the economy; as the world economy slows, even big business may suffer." -- NFIB chief economist Bill Dunkelberg
Details of the survey can be found at...
AA (Alcoa)
Alcoa's earnings were better than expected yesterday but their sales (revenues) were about 3% lower year-over-year so the stock sold off in after-hours.  AA is the first Dow stock to report, but its status as a bell-weather is debatable.  My feeling is that if the economy was in good shape, we wouldn't see the aluminum producer's revenues falling.

The following comment from a Trader is in force:  "The market will always do the most obvious thing in the least obvious way to exact maximum pain on most market participants.  The most obvious thing for market now is to have a correction. Since it is the most obvious thing, as anticipated by most market participants, market is delaying it again and again to torture the bears. Once it has most people convinced that it will occur much later, only then will market start to roll downhill to make bulls suffer. "

As I noted yesterday, the direction of the market will be up for a few days, at least until the shorts get flushed out. 

I don't have data available for this sort of event.  The "event" I refer to was Friday's lower-low with slightly lower volume and slightly improved market internals.  A few years ago I would have said that the volume wasn't low enough to suggest the correction was over, but I have since learned that there are many traders who will buy on a day like last Friday even if the numbers don't suggest a durable rally.  Bottom line here is that the Market is headed up.  To guess how far I suggest examining the 200-dMA.
The S&P 500 is now 9% above its 200-dMA.  Since I think the market will struggle to get much more than 10% above the 200-dMA, this rally is likely to be short-lived.
Tuesday, the S&P 500 finished up 0.4% to 1569 (rounded). 

VIX fell 2.7% to 12.84.

Tuesday, the NTSM analysis remained HOLD at the close. 

I remain about 20% invested in stocks as of 5 March (S&P 500 -1540), due to my risk tolerance rather than the numerical NTSM analysis.  To put it bluntly, I currently have no tolerance for risk.  (If I were strictly following the NTSM numbers, I'd still be heavily invested in stocks.) My reasoning may be found at…