Saturday, February 22, 2014

The Week Ahead: GDP, new homes, durable goods, Yellen

The gross domestic product second estimate, for the final quarter of 2013 and also for the full year, will be released Friday at 8:30 a.m. New York time. The first estimate was  released near the end of January, so the February release will have an impact only if it changes significantly from the first round.

Other top reports of the week: New home sales on Wednesday at 10 a.m. and durable goods orders on Thursday at 8:30 a.m.

Federal Reserve Chair Janet  Yellen testifies before the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs at 10 a.m. on Thursday. Her semi-annual monetary policy report had been scheduled for Feb. 13 but was postponed by severe weather.

Leading indicators (in descending order of importance):

The interest rate spread between 10-year Treasuries and the federal funds rate, reported continually during market hours.

The M2 money supply, at 4:30 p.m. Thursday.

The S&P 500 index, reported continually during market hours.

Average weekly initial jobless claims, at 8:30 a.m. Thursday. 

Index of consumer expectations from the Reuters/University of Michigan consumer sentiment report, at 9:55 a.m. Friday.

Other reports of interest:

Monday: Dallas Federal Reserve manufacturing survey at 10:30 a.m.

Tuesday: The S&P Case-Shiller home price index in 20 metro areas at 9 a.m. and the Conference Board consumer confidence report at 10 a.m.

Wednesday: Petroleum inventories at 10:30 a.m.

Thursday: The Federal Reserve money supply report at 4:30 p.m.

Friday: The Chicago purchasing managers index at 9:45 a.m. and pending home sales at 10 a.m.

I also keep an eye on the Baltic Dry Index, updated daily.


Besides Yellen, other Federal Open Market Committee members in the public eye this week are Fed Gov. Daniel Tarullo on Tuesday, Cleveland Fed Pres. Sandra Pianalto on Wednesday and Fed Gov. Jeremy Stein on Friday.

Also speaking are two FOMC alternates: Atlanta Fed Pres. Dennis Lockhart on Thursday and Chicago Fed Pres. Charles Evans on Friday.

Analytical universe

This week through Tuesday I shall be analyzing new bull and bear signals among 299 high-volume large-cap stocks and exchange-traded funds that have some analyst interest. From Wednesday, for "Thursday's Prospects", I shall expand analysis to my full universe, 3,864 small-cap and larger stocks and exchange-traded funds.

Trading calendar

By my rules, I'm trading March options for the short legs of vertical, diagonal and calendar spreads and covered calls, and for all legs of butterfly spreads and iron condors. I'm trading June options for single calls and puts as well as straddles. Shares, of course, are good at any time.

Good trading.

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