March 21, 2013
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(This is Mark Vickery stepping in for Sheraz Mian while he
gives an interview this morning.)
The market seems to have been celebrating for awhile, but the
results are panning out: Jobless Claims are way down year over
year, registering 336K for the week. Though this is up 2,000 from
last week's adjusted 334K, the fact that we have a consistent
level below 350K has to be seen, even by the biggest naysayers of
today's economy, that things are much better than they have been.
It wasn't all too long ago we spent YEARS over the 400K mark in
Existing Home Sales, Leading Indicators and the Philly Fed survey
are on tap for a busy Thursday. Any of these bringing relatively
bad news could challenge upward momentum in the markets. But
based on Jobless Claims alone, one has to point this out: the
market has been right again.
Need a crystal ball? Check the stock market.
Yes, it's true the big companies reporting "before" earnings
) missed Q1 estimates, but the macro-view has been nothing but
positive lately (…at least if you don't investigate certain small
European islands too closely).
) posted higher earnings and revenues yesterday, helping
articulate the ongoing boom in the housing market.
Housing gaining traction is not only an excellent touchstone for
market bulls, but it's also quite different from the scenario of
the past several years. As you may remember, we'd been wandering
through the desert (for what seemed like 40 years, though it was
really only 4) waiting for housing to "build" again. Housing
positively affects so many sectors within our economy, it's very
likely appearing to be a silver bullet for America now that it's
finally come around.
Then again, as a leading indicator, market bears still have
reason to squawk -- everything's up ("Uh oh!"). And right on
time, futures are down this morning. Europe was down today. Have
we already priced in all the good news from housing? That's
surely an oversimplification, but every once in awhile, there's a
good reason someone poops the party.