Jobs Report Boost Stocks

Hello traders everywhere. A better-than-expected jobs report has given life to a rather dull week for stocks. The U.S. economy added 228,000 jobs last month, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Economists polled by Reuters expected a gain of 200,000. The unemployment rate held steady at 4.1%.

Average hourly earnings, a closely watched component of the report, rose 0.2% for November and 2.5% for the year. Economists expected a monthly increase of 0.3% or 2.7% for the year.

The Federal Reserve is scheduled to meet next week, and with the strong jobs numbers and a growing U.S. economy expect the Fed to stay on track and announce an interest rate hike on Wednesday.

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The other big news today is Bitcoin, which will begin futures trading on the CBOE Sunday, Dec. 10th. At 5 pm EST using the symbol (XBT). Bitcoin has had a strong week heading into futures trading with a gain of 45% on the week, before a sell-off of 13% today, but it has backed off the lows of the session to only be down 5% this afternoon. Continue reading "Jobs Report Boost Stocks"

Bank Stocks Lead The Way

Hello traders everywhere. Traders have apparently decided that an old standby is where they want to invest vs. the hottest sector of 2017. That old standby, the big banks.

I opened MarketClub's Top Stocks list this morning after the DOW and S&P 500 opened significantly higher to find that Bank of America (NYSE:BAC) was sitting at the top. In fact, three of the top 5 were big banks. It's a far cry from the tech sector that has been all the rage until recently.

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This change in sentiment is primarily due to tax reform. On Saturday the Senate approved their version of the tax bill in a narrow 51-49 vote after a lot of work on the hill. Once the Senate and House of Representatives reconcile their respective versions of the legislation, the resulting bill could cut corporate tax rates to 20% from 35%.

The GOP, however, still needs to overcome future obstacles for the Senate and the House to craft a joint bill, which will then be presented to President Donald Trump. Republicans hope a deal will be achieved by Christmas.

Key levels to watch next week: Continue reading "Bank Stocks Lead The Way"

Stocks Rebound After Flynn Report

Hello traders everywhere. The stock market went on a wild roller-coaster ride Friday, falling sharply on a report by ABC News that Michael Flynn was directed by President Trump to talk to the Russians.

The DOW fell over 300 points before recovering to trade about 80 points lower on the day. In afternoon trading, the S&P 500 was down by 0.40% and the Nasdaq by 0.65% after rebounding from losses of more than 1% earlier in the day.

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Gold rebounded after three straight days of losses to trade up about .50% on the day as traders jumped to the haven as stocks fell.

Bitcoin has also traded back above 10,500 today as the road to Wall Street was paved today with an announcement from the CME Group Inc. that it's futures contracts will debut Dec. 18. Cboe Global Markets Inc. didn't announce a start date as both got the green light Friday after going through a process called self-certification - a pledge to the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission that the products don't run afoul of the law.

Key levels to watch next week: Continue reading "Stocks Rebound After Flynn Report"

FANG Selloff Erases Early Market Gains

Hello traders everywhere. FANG shares are tumbling today as investors started selling the top-performing stocks of the year dramatically only to move into financials. This move is due to robust economic data and comments from Fed officials on future rate hikes.

Stocks had started the day higher on speculation the Senate would pass cuts to corporate taxes, with banks pacing gains on bets that industry will benefit most. Yellen's comments added to optimism that growth is poised to accelerate. The dollar erased an early gain, while 10-year Treasury yields rose.

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Meanwhile, crude oil is falling for the fourth straight day on news that OPEC and Russia look set to prolong oil supply cuts until the end of 2018 this week while signaling that they may review the deal when they meet again in June if the market overheats.

Key levels to watch next week: Continue reading "FANG Selloff Erases Early Market Gains"

Bitcoin Rises As Oil Drops

Hello traders everywhere. Bitcoin's meteoric rise has continued through the long holiday weekend. When the markets closed on Wednesday Bitcoin had just surpassed 8K to hit an all-time high of $8,281.62. Much to my surprise this morning it had breached 9k to hit an all-time high of $9,725.26 in early hours trading.

Trading volumes rose to 5.4 billion yesterday, the highest level since Nov. 13 – adding credence to the rally's sustainability. Furthermore, Google search volumes for the term "bitcoin" have spiked again.

So, the technical chart looks more bullish than ever, with prices likely to soon test $10,000 levels – and perhaps beyond.

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Crude Oil had dropped over 2% in early hours trading before backing of the low of the day and trading down a little over 1% on the day. The drop comes on the heels of a rise to the highest level in 2 years.

The recent weakness is due to U.S. drillers expanding operations while OPEC and Russia prepare to discuss longer supply curbs in a meeting later this week.

Key levels to watch next week: Continue reading "Bitcoin Rises As Oil Drops"