Friday, May 2, 2014

Keystone's Morning Wake-Up 5/2/14; Ukraine Turmoil; CVX; EL; Monthly Jobs Report; Factory Orders; BRK/A

Global markets are flat waiting on the US jobs report. The optimism is growing by the minute. The consensus for the Monthly Jobs Report at 8:30 AM EST is 215K jobs with a range of 200K-225K jobs and 6.6% unemployment rate. Whisper numbers are 250K with some optimistic analysts looking for a huge 275K-300K blow-out jobs number. So traders expect a number above 200K at a minimum with even higher expectations.

Last month was 192K jobs which was a disappointment since well over 200K jobs were expected. The unemployment rate is currently 6.7%. Wages remain very important since the Fed will continue to be unable to increase inflation unless wages rise. Many analysts profess blue skies ahead for the economy and say that jobs will increase steadily from here forward so an optimistic job number is needed to prove this thesis. S&P futures are +2.5. Clearly the market risk is to the downside on a weak jobs number since near universal consensus is well over 200K jobs. Traders expect a brand new shiny jobs pony to be delivered in a couple hours--it had better show up.

Ukraine launches an offensive in Slovyansk. A helicopter is shot down so clearly the pro-Russian forces are military troops with weaponry and not simple protestors. Casualties are occurring. Putin says the action by Ukraine destroys the peace talks. Ukraine turmoil increases but global traders continue to not care. Sanctions are having no impact. Traders remain very complacent overall with low volatility and low put/call ratio's.

Dollar/yen is 102.50 creeping higher overnight so this creates buoyancy in the US futures. Treasury yields fell yesterday. The 10-year yield is at 2.63%. Copper is trading higher. Keybot the Quant remains long. The bulls need RTH 58.85 and/or JJC 37.48 to signal victory and guarantee higher markets with the SPX on its way above 1900. The bears need XLF 21.80, GTX 4935 and/or VIX 14.63 to begin a new round of market selling. If all five parameters remain status quo, like yesterday, markets stagger sideways.

For the SPX starting at 1884, the bulls need to touch the 1889 handle and the strong 1891 resistance will fold like a cheap suit with price running towards 1897 and 1900. The bears need to push under 1878 to accelerate the downside. A move through 1879-1888 is sideways action for today but unlikely since the jobs report will likely pick a winner. Very simply, the bulls need 5 or 6 positive S&P points to unleash a strong upside rally while the bears need 5 or 6 points negative points to unleash the downside. The 8 MA is above the 34 MA on the SPX 30-minute chart signaling bullish markets for the hours ahead so use this metric to confirm market direction today. Bears got nothing unless they receive the negative 8/34 cross.

Earnings today include CVX, EL and after the bell Berkshire-Hathaway. The yearly conference with Warren Buffett in Omaha is this weekend. Factory Orders data is important at 10 AM and will create a market pivot point. The jobs circus is beginning. Strike up the calliope.

Note Added 8:43 AM on 5/3/14: At 8:30 AM yesterday, the Monthly Jobs Report is 288K jobs, a big jump higher and the highest number in two years. The unemployment rate drops 40 basis points to 6.3% the biggest drop since September 2008. The prior two months jobs numbers are revised a total of 36K jobs higher. Last month is revised up to 203K jobs from the 192K. The trend in the jobs report is now for over 200K jobs per month so this level must not be violated on the downside again if the economy is strong. All sectors of the economy experience gains. The long-term unemployed declines taking a 300K drop but this is likely due to the extended unemployment benefits program ending. There is a fly in the ointment with the labor participation rate dropping to 62.8% versus 63.2% last month. People have simply given up looking for work since they cannot find jobs. This will create a drag on families and relatives of these folks that are working. Hourly wages remain flat this month. Inflation cannot exist, and the Fed’s money-printing policies will be exposed as a failure, if wages do not increase. And wages have not increased for years. This is disinflationary and deflationary behavior that the Fed cannot prevent. The broad indexes trade flat for Friday. The indexes are unable to achieve new all-time highs. RUT small caps are up. The utilities are beaten -2.1% as traders anticipate rates rising. The 2-year and 5-year yields are unchanged after the day plays out. The longer end 10 and 30-year yields actually drop. The Ukraine turmoil is creating concern since the death count approaches 40 with the bloodiest days thus far occurring. The Benghazi scandal may be affecting market psychology as well if the US slips into another Watergate style or Clinton-Lewinsky affair type scandal.

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