Schaeffer's Trading Floor Blog

Quiet Morning

by 5/3/2005 8:54 AM
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The pre-open action remains rather quiet as stock futures have drifted slightly lower...I have been using this down time to do a little stock research that I hope will yield some situations to discuss today, but more on that later...

Getting past the Fed news and the debate on whether "measured" will make an appearance in their statement I see some minor earnings news but nothing jumps out as immediately eye catching.

One of the stories that did catch my attention is news from General Electric that it has received a subpoena from the SEC in regard to insurance products. While I doubt this will have much impact on today's trading it is worth keeping in mind given that 16 of the 18 analysts tracked by Zacks rank the stock with a "buy" rating...

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Good Morning

by 5/3/2005 7:53 AM
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Welcome to Fed day...where rates are rising, the Fed is all we talk about and Fed Chairman Greenspan's picture is displayed as if he were a movie star promoting a new blockbuster hit...Okay, so perhaps I am exaggerating a bit, but clearly the focus of today's "news" will be on the FOMC and their expected 25 basis point rate hike. Ahead of this event, we find S&P futures trading down just over two points below fair value. Oil is down 55 cents to 50.37 while gold trades down 50 cents to 430...

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Final Figures

by 5/2/2005 4:41 PM
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Here are how the major indices settled on the day...

Index Index Value Point Change Percent Change
S&P 500 (SPX) 1162.2 5.3 points 0.46 percent
Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) 10251.7 59 points 0.6 percent
Nasdaq Composite (COMP) 1928.7 7.0 points 0.36 percent
Russell 2000 (RUT) 585.9 6.5 points 1.12 percent
CBOE Market Volatility Index (VXO) 14.44 -0.74 points -4.9 percent

Scanning down the list shows mild strength...until you get to get to the RUT we see a respectable upside move. Of course, last week we discussed how the small cap group was relatively weak so this feels more like a snap-back move as opposed to relative strength...

Overall we see a mixed picture...The major indices maintained gains on the day along with bounce back in small caps that we just discussed...This morning I noted that semis and internet were up, but had lagged Friday's action so it would be interesting to see if they held the bounce - they did not...Brokers bounced from their worst levels but still finished lower...Here we see the oil/energy gains that we discussed in the ETF scan...

This morning I noted that the chatter had already shifted to tomorrow's FOMC meeting and I would expect that to continue to be focus in the morning...


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I apologize for the tardiness of this post...but here are today's top and bottom performing Exchange Traded Funds (ETFs)...

Top Performing Sector Exchange Traded Funds:

  • Oil Service HOLDRS (OIH) = +2.77 percent
  • iShares GS Natural Resource (IGE) = +1.89 percent
  • Energy Select Sector SPDR (XLE) = +1.80 percent
  • iShares DJ US Energy (IYE) = +1.76 percent
  • Retail HOLDRS (RTH) = +1.64 percent
  • iShares DJ Transportation Average (IYT) = +1.46 percent
  • streetTRACKS Fortune 500 Index (FFF) = +1.28 percent
  • iShares S&P SmallCap 600 Index (IJR) = +1.24 percent

Bottom Performing Sector Exchange Traded Funds:

  • Technology Select Sector SPDR (XLK) = -0.11 percent
  • iShares DJ US Real Estate (IYR) = -0.12 percent
  • iShares C&S Realty Majors (ICF) = -0.52 percent
  • streetTRACKS Wilshire REIT Fund (RWR) = -0.54 percent
  • Wireless HOLDRS (WMH) = -0.64 percent
  • iShares DJ US Telecom (IYZ) = -1.00 percent
  • Telecom HOLDRS (TTH) = -1.08 percent
  • streetTRACKS Gold Shares (GLD) = -1.08 percent

I thought it was still worth noting this list because it shows that even though the major indices were subdued today, a number of groups were on the move. In particular, we see strong up moves from oil/energy while gold was hit hardest.

Note: If you are not familiar with ETFs, make sure you read the Education and FAQ sections in our ETF center.

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Into the Close

by 5/2/2005 4:10 PM
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The bulls made a later afternoon push...

Chart Courtesy of Thomson/ILX bring the SPX back to its morning highs.


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