Stock Market Trading: 25 April 2014
European equities are set to head lower on the open as recent gains look to have put in a short-term top.
markets have been stuck in a range for a while and, as we now approach the top, traders have looked at the current economic outlook and geopolitical tensions and decided to cap gains.
Tensions in the Ukraine appear to be ratcheting up again, what with Kiev launching operations against pro-Russians on one side and Moscow flexing its muscles on the border.
With both sides continually drawing red lines ever closer to each other, investors are getting concerned that someone is about to plunge over one of them.
Everything was fine until the US markets opened for trading yesterday, at which point a fairly heavy sell off ensued.
This time the upbeat economic data was overturned by increasing tensions in the Ukraine.
Strong earnings reports from Apple and Caterpillar
helped the Dow Jones maintain some dignity, with the index remaining unchanged at 16,500.
Stock Market Trading: 24 April 2014
Despite some weaker earnings, worse than expected US new home sales and more disappointing manufacturing data from China, the market managed to avoid panic following such a good run over the last week or so.
In a session proving the underlying strength of the market, the Dow Jones only closed 12 points lower at 16,501.
After market hours, strong earnings reports from Facebook
pushed futures markets higher so the bulls will be anticipating a positive US open later on this afternoon.
As a result, European equities are set to open higher as the strong tech earnings grab traders' attention.
However, the heady start is merely retracing yesterday's losses and underlies the indecision in sentiment at the moment.
The current sources of uncertainty in the world don't seem likely to be resolved any time soon so don't expect traders to get too bullish on today's early gains as the market is just wearing its current groove a little deeper.
Stock Market Trading: 23 April 2014
Strong earnings and corporate deals managed to help US equity markets to their sixth day of gains on the trot.
M&A announcements, particularly from the pharmaceutical sector, gave stocks a boost, while Existing Home Sales fell by less than expected to give the bulls some macro economic news to celebrate.
As a result, the Dow Jones ended 65 points higher at 16,515, although European equities are set to open mixed this morning as traders remain cautious.
Whilst the US earnings season is doing a good job of keeping the bulls fuelled, another sign of weakness from China's manufacturing industry is cause for concern.
The gains over the last few days have seen a welcome turn around after the initially weak start to the month.
However, as we now edge near to the top of the recent range, traders are looking hesitant just in case the sellers re-emerge.
Stock Market Trading: 22 April 2014
European equities are set to grind higher, tracking a positive session overnight in the US.
Although gains are expected, markets are likely to be a bit groggy following the long weekend as traders catch up on geo-political events.
The Ukraine crisis is a nightmare to decipher what's going on and its subsequent affect on risk.
The last big headline was the surprise agreement between the West and Russia at the Geneva talks to de-escalate the situation, but any perceived optimism has been scuttled by the clear detachment from events on the ground.
In a very quiet day of trading for the Wall Street industrials
, the Dow stock index managed to add weight nonetheless.
It was the fifth straight day of gains for the Dow, marking the longest winning streak for six months, with the index ending up 40 points at 16,449.
Whilst US traders will keep one eye on the situation in Ukraine, most of their attention will be given to a heavy week of corporate earnings.
The information and comments provided herein under no circumstances are to be considered an offer or solicitation to invest and nothing herein should be construed as investment advice. The information provided is believed to be accurate at the date the information is produced.
By Jonathan Sudaria, 25 April 2014