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@theMarket: Politics Take Center Stage in Equity Markets
By Bill Schmick,
03:05PM / Friday, July 19, 2024
As temperatures climb to record highs throughout the nation, the financial markets feel their brand of heat as election fever takes hold with a vengeance.   Suddenly, value stocks, which have taken a back seat to the FANG/AI equity gang for months, are coming back into vogue. Semiconductor stocks, which have led the tech market higher for years had their deepest sell-off since 2022. Even Nvidia is suffering a bout of profit-taking.   Some are calling it the 'Great Rotation' where traders are taking profits on the concentration trade consisting of a handful of large-cap mega stocks and diving into financials, industrials, materials, and even regional

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@theMarket: Inflation Data Boosts Markets
By Bill Schmick,
04:51PM / Friday, July 12, 2024
The Consumer Price Index was cooler than expected in June, while the Producer Price Index was warmer. Equity traders responded by selling winners and buying losers.   CPI inflation fell further than most expected as easing prices for gasoline and other staples like food and new lease rents cooled dramatically. That information might help the level of anxiety people are feeling about inflation. It appears that the price points of most staples have finally flattened out year-over-year instead of constantly going up as they have for the last few years.    Countering that good news, wholesale prices climbed 0.2 percent last month led by prices for services,

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@theMarket: Stocks Grind Higher Making All-Time Highs
By Bill Schmick,
02:17PM / Friday, July 05, 2024
It was another good week for stocks following another good month of gains. Granted, in this holiday-shortened week, the volume behind the positive moves was paltry at best. However, many traders will tell you that only the price pays.   The macroeconomic data seems to be coming in as the Fed had hoped, with some data showing a slight cooling of the economy and at least two months of better inflation numbers. Although the U.S. economy added 206,000 jobs last month, that was slightly down from 218,000 jobs in May. Average hourly earnings also increased, but below forecast as well. However, the overall unemployment rate did tick up to 4.1 percent, the highest reading in three

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@theMarket: Financial Markets Could See July Fireworks
By Bill Schmick,
04:05PM / Friday, June 28, 2024
The good news is that early in this coming month we should see new highs in the stock market. The bad news is that we could also see some downside as well.   The equity markets' grind higher throughout June has been achieved by fewer and fewer stocks. Most of the gains have been concentrated in ten stocks or less. There have been a few days where the other 490 stocks of the S&P 500 index managed to mark up some gains, but if you weren't in AI or Fang stocks, you underperformed by a mile.   I have mentioned this before in several of my past columns. As we push higher, a feeling of caution seeps into my bones. On the surface, there is nothing that I

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@theMarket: Handful of Stocks Key to the Markets' Direction
By Bill Schmick,
03:12PM / Friday, June 21, 2024
It was a slow week for news but that didn't stop the bulls from pushing the equity markets to new highs. But the number of stocks that are pushing stocks higher are fewer and fewer.   Day after day, and week after week. the S&P 600 and NASDAQ have made a series of new highs. Under the hood, however, just about all the gains have been led by ten stocks in the technology sector. Many investors saw no end to the gains and continued to pile into the Magnificent Seven and the AI Five. The stampede has been led by everyone's favorite stock, Nvidia.   This leading semiconductor stock now boasts more than a $3.35 trillion valuation. It is now the most

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