Options Trading News

October 29, 2013  Tue 7:10 AM CT

Stocks are inching higher today after finding support at new highs last week.

S&P 500 futures rose about two tenths of a percent, matching gains of a similar magnitude in Europe. Asian markets were little changed in the overnight session aside from India, which rallied almost two percent after its central bank raised interest rates.

The S&P 500 has risen in 12 of the past 14 sessions, supported by bullish sentiment, decent earnings and a benign interest-rate backdrop. The index pushed to new record highs last week and quickly bounced after a slight pullback on Wednesday, suggesting momentum remains bullish.

Our researchLAB market scanner shows emerging strength in stocks that will benefit from a better credit market: Fannie Mae/Freddie Mac, loan servicers and financial guarantors. Home builders have also bounced after interest rates fell, while gold and silver miners have tried to rebound from long-term lows. International stocks, which had led in recent months, have lost some of their strength.

With the Federal Reserve scheduled to make its next monetary announcement tomorrow afternoon, the big question now facing investors is the direction of interest rates. The recent government shutdown probably slowed economic growth and gave policymakers reason to keep monetary stimulus in place longer. Tomorrow also brings the first estimate on third-quarter economic growth.

The main items on today's calendar are the release of September retail sales at 8:30 a.m. ET and the Case-Shiller index of home prices at 9 a.m. While retail sales can normally move stocks, their impact could be dulled this month because they're being released later than normal.

Commodities and foreign-exchange markets are sounding a mildly cautious tone this morning, with oil, precious metals, the euro and Australian dollar all lower. The yen is down against the greenback but higher against most other currencies. Copper is bucking the nervousness with a small gain.

In company-specific news, NutriSystem is indicated sharply higher after releasing strong quarterly results. Pfizer is little changed on a mixed report. Hartford Financial rose after the bell yesterday after earnings and revenue solidly beat estimates.

Share this article with your friends

Related Stories


Stocks inch higher before events

November 30, 2015

S&P 500 futures are up 0.2 percent but remain within their recent range. European markets rose fractionally and Asia fell overnight, led by a drop of almost 2 percent in Seoul.


Jobs, ECB, OPEC on full docket

November 30, 2015

The Chicago Purchasing Managers Index and pending home sales get the ball rolling today at 9:45 a.m. and 10 a.m. ET, respectively.


Stocks inch higher before data

November 25, 2015

S&P 500 futures are up about 0.1 percent, while most of Europe is rallying more than 1 percent. Asia was mostly lower overnight.


Calendar is busy before holiday

November 25, 2015

Today's agenda is packed with data, including mortgage applications, jobless claims, durable goods, personal income and spending, consumer sentiment, and new home sales.


Stocks fall after Russian jet downed

November 24, 2015

S&P 500 futures are down 0.6 percent, while most of Europe has fallen more than 1 percent. Asian markets were little-changed.


Premium Services

Education & Strategy

The art of trading

As I stated in last week's article, a break out or a break down needs to have a couple things happen before it is considered a confirmed break out or break down. The only problem is that in today's market where things move much more quicker than they did just a few years ago, two days could wind up being the majority of the expected movement, if not the whole movement.

View more education articles »