Thursday, July 22, 2010

Market Update 7:19pm

Market Update – stocks were strong out of the gate but didn’t do much after 10amET – we traded flat for the majority of the day (although there was a brief hiccup into the close which coincided w/a CNBC report on GS – see below). Many people are discounting the late day sell-off from Wed (which was futures driven and didn’t have a lot of conviction behind it) and looking at today’s rally from the pre-Bernanke remark levels (so from 2pmET on Wed) – in that context, the SP500 is up ~14 points (instead of the headline 24 gain). There was a lot of short covering at the open (see below for the fundamental catalysts being cited for today’s strength) but as the day drew on some real buyers participated also (weighted towards HFs). Volumes/activity dried up into the close and people aren’t interested in chasing the market given looming technical levels (1100 and then 1110) and the EU bank stress tests (which are due to hit at ~12pmET on Fri). During the last hour of trading today, e-mini volumes were inline w/the 10-day average after spiking to 30% above average during the first hour of today’s session. The VIX actually moved off its lows into the close despite the sp rallying while the corp credit markets didn’t tighten nearly as much as the SP500 rallied (IG was ~1-2bp tighter today).

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