Friday, July 15, 2011

7/18 Almanac

On Monday, July 18: International capital, Home Builders' index.

There are 33 trading days before the August options expire, 61 the September, 96 the October and 124 the November.

On the jump, market stats, econ reports, and the trading calendar . . .


Blue chip stocks (SPY) closed the latest regular session up 0.6% from the prior close. During the day SPY traversed 0.8% in a net move up of 2¢.

The day's extremes: Open $131.66, high $131.87, low $130.77, close $131.69.

SPY closed within the DeMark pivots after trading above their range. The next DeMark pivots are $131.23-$132.33.

In total, 2.9 billion shares were traded on the three major U.S. stock exchanges, 3% more than on the prior trading day.

Five-year bond yields imply inflation at 2.09%, one basis point higher than on the prior trading day.

Econ reports:

The Treasury Department's international capital report will be released at 9 a.m. Eastern. It's a monthly report, and it covers a period two months before the release month. So this one covers early in the period when the U.S. political will to pay its debts became an issue. I'll be looking to see if there are signs of nervous money being repatriated.

The Home Builders' housing market index, at 10 a.m. This is a bit more complex than most housing reports. It covers demand, of course, which is obvious, but also has elements of confidence and the movement of the economy -- the broader context that is so important to anyone making major buying (or selling) decisions.

Treasury auctions 3- and 6-month bills at 11:30 a.m., and announces funding requirements for 4-week bills at 11 a.m.

These are also of enhanced interest. Treasury had greater than normal bidding in a 30-year bond auction this week, a timespan that moves well beyond the current crisis in credit confidence. But the short-term bills are right on the griddle, and I'll be looking for signs of falling interest, as investors decide discretion is the greater part of smarts when it comes to parking their money the rest of this year.

No Fedsters at the podium. For those who, like me, cannot get enough of central-banker rhetoric, the Federal Reserve maintains an archive of speeches and testimony.

(Confession: Chairman Bernanke's testimony is a great bedtime read.)

As the week progresses, look for housing starts on Tuesday, existing home sales on Wednesday, jobless claims and the Philly Fed survey on Thursday, and on Friday, President Obama's drop-dead date for Congress to actually do something to keep the U.S. from becoming a deadbeat nation on Aug. 2.

(Not that I dislike the debit-limit crisis -- it has been a stellar trading opportunity. Love the volatility!)

Trading Calendar:

By my rules, at this point in the cycle I can trade August vertical, diagonal, calendar and butterfly spreads, iron condors and covered calls, as well as October or later straddles, strangles, calls and puts. And of course, shares are good at any time.

Enjoy the weekend!

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