Seeing Opportunity in Volatility 09-30-15

U.S. stocks rallied today after a poor start to the week. After the Fed’s mid-month inaction vis-à-vis interest rates and its warning about overseas economic malaise, the S&P 500, the widely-followed broad-market index, fell more than 5 percent in less than two weeks. Professional investors tend to reposition their portfolios near quarter-end; that factor likely added to recent volatile action. It appears after the latest selling wave, bargain hunters have emerged.  Read more about Seeing Opportunity in Volatility 09-30-15

Layers of Uncertainty 09-23-15

No interest rate change. That’s the decision announced by the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) last Thursday afternoon. All but one of the ten committee members who voted agreed to keep the federal funds rate at its current rock-bottom level. The lone dissenter, Jeffrey Lacker, head of the Richmond branch of the Fed, feels that current economic conditions warrant an immediate rate increase. Read more about Layers of Uncertainty 09-23-15

Uncertainty Reigns as the Fed Convenes 09-16-15

The long-awaited Federal Open Market Committee meeting takes place today and tomorrow. The Fed will announce its policy decision tomorrow afternoon. The key question of concern to investors, of course: whether or not Janet Yellen and her lieutenants will finally raise the federal funds rate, the overnight lending rate banks charge each other for the reserve funds held at the Fed. This important financial benchmark impacts just about every interest rate in the real economy. Read more about Uncertainty Reigns as the Fed Convenes 09-16-15

Asian Markets' Rally Failed to Ignite U.S. Stocks

With the long weekend behind us, and traders and investors back at work, U.S. stocks reached for their second consecutive day in the green to start this holiday-shortened week but failed to hold their early gains today and sold off as the day progressed. Chinese stocks for two consecutive days helped the U.S. market. On both Tuesday and Wednesday, a late-session rally on the Shanghai Stock Exchange sent Mainland stocks into positive territory. Read more about Asian Markets' Rally Failed to Ignite U.S. Stocks

Oil Snaps Back 09-02-15

Market volatility has continued as investors continue to react to oil price swings and developments in China. After a week ago reaching its lowest point since the Great Recession, oil has recovered some lost ground in large day-to-day moves. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude, the benchmark for domestic oil, shot up 27 percent in three trading sessions to close at nearly $50 before retreating sharply yesterday. It was the largest three-day rally for oil since the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait some 25 years ago. Read more about Oil Snaps Back 09-02-15

Stocks End Six-Day Streak 08-26-15

U.S. stocks ended their six-day slide, rallying strongly into the close. The six-day losing streak was the longest in more than 3 years. Included in the volatile stretch was the worst two-day fall since the dark days of the financial crisis. On the other hand, today’s gain also marked the biggest single-day jump in nearly four years. The large daily swings show the uncertainty of market participants.      Read more about Stocks End Six-Day Streak 08-26-15

EIA Report Sends Oil to Six-Year Low 08-19-15

In its weekly petroleum report, the EIA reported a surprising increase of 2.62 million barrels in commercial crude inventory. This marks the largest increase since April, and the current inventory of 456.2 million barrels remains near the highest summer level in at least the last 80 years. Read more about EIA Report Sends Oil to Six-Year Low 08-19-15