Are Stocks Pricing in an Economic Contraction?

What’s in Today’s Report:

  • Bottom Line – Are Stocks Pricing in an Economic Contraction?
  • Weekly Economic Cheat Sheet – Is Stagflation Imminent?

Stock futures are trading modestly lower with European markets this morning as recession fears continue to weigh on sentiment.

Economically, global Composite PMI data was better than feared but broader concerns of a slowdown remain.

Today, investor focus will be on economic data early with Motor Vehicle Sales (E: 13.5M) and Factory Orders (E: 0.5%) both due out before the opening bell.

There are no Fed officials scheduled to speak today but the Treasury will hold auctions for 3-Month and 6-Month Bills at 11:30 a.m. ET which may move bond markets and ultimately move equities.

A Historical Reason to be Optimistic for the Second Half

What’s in Today’s Report:

  • A Historical Reason to Be Optimistic for the Second Half

Futures are slightly lower following another high-profile guidance cut and more mixed economic and inflation data.

Micron (MU) materially cut forward guidance, sighting a steep drop in demand at the end of the second quarter and becoming the latest company to warn of deteriorating business conditions.

Economic and inflation data was mixed as EU headline HICP (their CPI) was hotter than expected but Core HICP underwhelmed, while the EU and UK final manufacturing PMIs reflected the slowing growth sweeping the globe.

Today’s focus will be on the ISM Manufacturing Index (E: 55.0) and the key here is moderation – markets need to see a slowing of growth but not a dramatic collapse.  If we see moderation, stocks can rally to start the second half.

State of Inflation: Hints of a Peak?

What’s in Today’s Report:

  • State of Inflation:  Hints of a Peak?

Futures are sharply lower following another profit warning from a national retailer and mixed economic data.

Restoration Hardware (RH) cut guidance just a few weeks after reporting earnings, citing a sudden deterioration in demand and increasing worries about corporate earnings.

Economic data was mixed as the Chinese manufacturing PMI rose back above 50, while German unemployment rose more than expected (5.3% vs. (E) 5.0%.

Today focus will be on the Core PCE Price Index (E: 0.4% m/m, 4.8% y/y) and if we get a materially hot number above the 4.8% yoy expectation, we can expect more selling pressure while a drop towards the mid 4% range would be a welcomed surprise (and likely cut the early morning losses).  Today we also get weekly Jobless Claims (E: 226K), although that number shouldn’t move markets.

Why Stocks Dropped Again

What’s in Today’s Report:

  • Why Stocks Dropped Again
  • Consumer Confidence Takeaways
  • Gold Update: A Soft Landing Is the Worst-Case Scenario

Stock futures are modestly lower thanks to some hawkish Fed chatter and another hot inflation print in Europe.

Economically, Spanish CPI jumped to 10.2% vs. (E) 9.2% in June, up from 8.5% in May suggesting inflation has not yet peaked, at least in parts of Europe.

Domestically, the Fed’s Mester reiterated that a 75 bp hike is likely in July given elevated consumer inflation expectations.

Today, there is one economic report to watch early: Final Q1 GDP (E: -1.4%) and investors would like to see the headline at least hold unchanged from the previous revision (if not get revised higher) before focus turns to several global central bankers speaking at an ECB Forum including Fed Chair Powell at 9:00 a.m. ET.

If the discussion takes on a more hawkish tone or there is any sign the market is losing confidence in the Fed (which would be evident in the bond markets) then yesterday’s selling pressure could continue.

Technical Update: Potential Bottom Forming?

What’s in Today’s Report:

  • Technical Update: Still Trending Lower But Potential Prospects of a Bottom Forming
  • Charts: S&P 500 Downside Target Reached, VIX in Compressing Range

Stock futures are modestly higher with global shares amid positive news out of China regarding covid policies.

China announced shortened quarantine times for incoming visitors in the latest move to ease covid-restrictions and potentially move away from their zero-Covid policy stance.

Economically, the German GfK Consumer Climate Index for July was no worse than feared at -27.4 vs. (E) -27.9 which is easing concerns about a swift drop-off in global economic growth.

Today, there are several economic reports to watch for: International Trade in Goods (E: -$102.0B), Case-Shiller Home Price Index (E: 1.8%), and most importantly Consumer Confidence (E: 101.0). Investors will want to see a continued slowdown in the data, but not to the degree that would raise concerns about a “hard landing.”

Two Fed officials are also scheduled to speak today: Barkin (8:00 a.m. ET) and Daly (12:30 p.m. ET) and there is a 7-Yr Treasury Note auction at 1:00 p.m. ET that could move yields and influence stock trading.


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Tom Essaye Quoted in Morningstar on June 23rd 2022

Don’t trust the stock-market bounce until S&P 500 is back above 3,800: analysts

Now, whether the market is poised to fall another 10% from this new resistance level (which would be down towards the 3,400 area) remains to be seen and a squeezy leg higher is still a very good possibility… Tom Essaye said. Click here to read the full article.

Why Stocks Rallied Last Week

What’s in Today’s Report:

  • Why Stocks Rallied Last Week
  • Weekly Market Preview:  Can the Rally Continue?
  • Weekly Economic Cheat Sheet:  More Important Growth Data This Week

Futures are slightly higher mostly on momentum from last week’s rally and following a quiet weekend of news.

In China, the economic reopening continued as Shanghai reported no new COVID cases for the first time in two months while Beijing allowed most schools to reopen on Monday.

Geo-politically, Russia defaulted on a debt payment, but this was widely expected so it’s not impacting markets.

Today focus will be on economic data via Durable Goods (E: 0.5%) and Pending Home Sales (E: -2.5%) and markets will want to see continued moderation in the data (so a slowing of activity, but not a steep drop that might imply a “hard” economic landing).

An Important Technical Level to Watch

What’s in Today’s Report:

  • An Important Technical Level to Watch

Futures are slightly higher despite disappointing economic data and a greater than expected rate hike from another foreign central bank.

June flash PMIs were mixed as the EU flash Composite PMI dropped sharply (51.9 vs. (E) 54.0) while the UK flash Composite PMI slightly beat estimates (53.1 vs. (E) 52.7).

The Norges Bank (Central Bank of Norway) became the latest central bank to hike more than expected (50 bps vs. 25 bps).

Today’s focus will be on economic data via the Flash Composite PMI  (E: 56.3) and Jobless Claims (E: 225K), and the market will be looking for moderation in the data (small declines that imply Fed hikes are working, but not drastic declines that imply economic growth is careening off a cliff).  We also get the second half of Powell’s Congressional Testimony before the House Financial Services Committee, but that shouldn’t yield any surprises.

Finally, oil continues to be one of the most important short-term market influences.  If oil can fall further, that will put a tailwind on stocks.

Is the Yield Curve Signaling an Imminent Recession?

What’s in Today’s Report:

  • Is the Yield Curve Clearly Signaling an Imminent Recession?
  • Chart: Oil Testing Critical Support

Stock futures are sharply lower with global shares as much of yesterday’s rally is being given back amid a resurgence in growth concerns ahead of Powell’s testimony today.

U.K. CPI met estimates at 9.1% but Input PPI jumped 22.1% vs. (E) 19.4% stoking fears that central banks will have to be even more aggressive to get inflation under control in the months ahead.

There are no notable economic reports today but there are multiple Fed speakers: Barkin (9:00 a.m. & 12:00 p.m. ET), Powell (9:30 a.m. ET), Evans (12:55 p.m. ET), and Harker (1:30 p.m. ET).

Then in the afternoon, there is a 20-Yr Treasury Bond auction at 1:00 p.m. ET that could move yields and impact equity markets.

Bottom line, the focus will be on Powell’s testimony before the House this morning as there has been a resurgence in concerns about global growth in the face of the latest broad shift to more aggressive central bank policy in response to sticky and elevated inflation pressures globally. And if Powell is seen as getting more hawkish, or the market shows signs of losing confidence in the Fed’s policy plans, we could potentially see stocks test the 2022 lows.

Economic Breaker Panel: June Update

What’s in Today’s Report:

  • Economic Breaker Panel – June Update
  • Economic Data Takeaways – Further Signs of Slowing Growth

Stock futures are bouncing modestly with European shares and bond markets are stable this morning as inflation data met expectations in the Eurozone and the BOJ decision was viewed as dovish versus expectations.

The BOJ maintained a very easy monetary policy, sending the yen back towards recent lows while Eurozone HICP (their CPI equivalent) came in at 8.1% vs. (E) 8.1% y/y which is helping markets stabilize this morning.

Looking into today’s session, there is one economic report to watch: Industrial Production (E: 0.4%) and the market will be looking for a strong print to ease concerns surrounding this week’s soft survey-based factory data and bolster the outlook for economic growth in the face of an aggressive Fed.

Fed Chair Powell is also set to deliver a speech at 8:45 a.m. ET and any comments on the economy or future policy plans could move markets today.

Finally, today is quadruple witching options expiration so expect very heavy volumes and the potential for momentum to build in either direction as derivatives traders square their books into the end of the quarter. In the S&P 500 3,650, 3700, and 3750 will all be key levels to watch into the afternoon today.