The latest apocalypse has apparently been averted. While mass transit and electrical issues will need to be sorted out over the next week in the Northeast of the U.S. it does appear that in a couple of hours Wall Street will be up and running again after having been closed the past two days. Since this is the last day of the month, expect to see significant trading volume, because this is Oct. 31st and many mutual funds mark this as their closing date for accounting purposes expect additional volume, and because there have been two days of pent-up pressure among investors expect to see additional speed in the broad markets.
While the U.S. markets were mostly closed, commodity trading continued and it is noteworthy that Crude Oil could not find a sustained rally the past couple of days and continues to banter around its lows near 86.00 USD for WTI. Gold as of this writing is a bit higher around 1721.00 per ounce.
The EUR has managed to trade neatly upwards the past couple of days on a ‘feel good story’ regarding European prospects via better than expected quarterly earnings from some companies, cynics however point out that the numbers coming from governments including Spain and Greece continue to be questionable at best. Spanish GDP numbers came in better than expected yesterday with a result of minus -0.3%, one tick better than the estimate of -0.4%. Pardon Digital Markets Advisor for pointing out this is still recessionary. While German Retail Sales numbers were also better today, the broad Unemployment Rate data for Europe was sour.
The GBP has gained against the USD also the past two days. Tomorrow the Nationwide HPI will be released in the U.K. and a gain of 0.2% is expected, last month’s number was minus -0.4%. The AUD has also achieved some added value the past couple of days but with pressure still mounting in the commodities sector and the Americans ready to join the party again within a couple of hours the entire forex market should be prepared for an influx of volume and interesting trading over the next twenty-four hours.
Hurricane Sandy has passed, but it has left behind a rather unsettled trading environment in the States that will welcome investors today. U.S. elections are less than a week away, jobless numbers will be issued on this Friday, and tomorrow the ISM Manufacturing PMI reading and CB Consumer Confidence marks will be presented. Today the Chicago PMI will be published, but with so much on the desks of investors waiting to be done the question is if anyone going is to pay attention to such a ‘small detail’.
The markets have been rather consolidated the past few days including last Friday. Caution seems to be building because the U.S. Presidential election appears to be a toss-up and this has put many investors additionally on the fence. While some polls suggest Mitt Romney has gained significant ground in key ‘swing States’ many market participants are likely to take a wait and see approach.
Most floor trading on Wall Street will likely be miniscule today, but electronic trading will be full and lively. Providing there are no hiccups in the major trading platforms that are used universally by the largest financial institutions traders should be prepared for a rather swift day.