Breaking the Spell of Rising Yields
Markets didn‘t buy into the Fed messaging, and quite a few moves were reversed. Stocks declined, commodities got under pressure, and oil took it on the chin. Long-dated Treasuries plunged again as the dollar reversed Wednesday‘s losses. Overall picture is one of nervousness as the Fed‘s statements and their consistency are getting a second look. Plus, triple witching can exaggerate today’s trade swings, getting reversed in subsequent sessions too.
The greatest adjustment is arguably in the inflation projections – what and when is the Fed going to do before inflation raises its ugly head in earnest. There is still time, but the market is transitioning to a higher inflation environment already nonetheless.
In moments of uncertainty that hasn‘t yet turned into sell first, ask questions later, let‘s remember the big picture. Plenty of fiscal support is hitting the economy, the Fed is very accomodative, and all the modern monetary theory inspired actions risk overheating the economy later this year. As I wrote yesterday:
(…) Rates are rising for the good reason of improving economy and its outlook, reflation (economic growth rising faster than inflation and inflation expectations) hasn‘t given way to all out inflation, and stocks with commodities remain in a secular bull market. We‘re in the decade of real assets outperforming paper ones, but that will become apparent only much later into the 2020s.
The largely undisturbed rise in commodities got checked yesterday just as stocks did, but the higher timeframe trends (technical and fundamental drivers) hadn‘t changed, which will be apparent once the dust settles. As I‘ll lay out in today‘s analysis, the gold market is springing back to life, and the precious metals upswing rationale is still very much on the table, and the decoupling from rising nominal yields goes on – I view yesterday‘s selloff in the miners as partially equity markets driven.
Bottom line, I made good decisions to subscribers‘ benefit by closing profitable stock market positions before the downswing hit, and not writing off gold.
Let‘s move right into the charts (all courtesy of www.stockcharts.com).
S&P 500 Outlook
Orderly downswing yesterday that wouldn‘t stand out on the chart in a few weeks really. The only stunning thing about it is how soon after Wednesday‘s FOMC it came. Yet, this chart isn‘t sending signals of a key reversal just in.
The non-confirmation in the high yield corporate bonds to short-term Treasuries (HYG:SHY) ratio caught up with the 500-strong index yesterday. Is a new downtrend starting here? While high yield corporate bonds for the all the Treasuries market turmoil haven‘t arguably bottomed yet, the degree to which they can pull stocks down still, is an open question. Conversely, once HYG swings higher again, stocks would get on a firmer footing.
Technology and Value
The tech sold off again, and the interest-rate sensitive defensives (utilities, consumer staples and REITs) suffered yesterday. Yes, even the sharply recovering real estate sector did. Coupled with value stocks giving up intraday gains, the stock market internals have (not insurmountedly, but temporarily) deteriorated.
Gold and Silver
Gold not following the declining TLT path is the most important green shoot within the market. The yellow metal held up very well in yesterday‘s selling pressure across the board, and not even gold miners (viewed through a $HUI overlay or $HUI:$GOLD ratio) gave up on the upswing – more downside price action in the latter would have to come today to cast real doubts.
Weekly chart examination of essentially equivalent metrics (enriched with the key copper ingredient) shows clearly the PMs decoupling stage – silver cast off the shackles still in 2020 while gold is doing so now. It‘s still early on in the process, but invalidating excessively bearish targets – gold has the benefit of my doubt, until I call that one off. I don‘t think that would happen today.
The one-way trip starting in Nov met its largest downswing yesterday, signifying we better get used to oil no longer moving in one direction only. Amid the reports of excess stockpiles and European lockdowns denting the demand, OPEC+ is keeping up with the production cuts, undermined largely by Iranian exports only.
But look how little has the oil index ($XOI) declined – it‘s relative position shows the excessive nature of yesterday‘s move. In my view, oil would be rangebound once it bottoms, before breaking higher again. The world economy is improving, leading indicators are rising, and the only fly in the ointment are yields, and a stronger dollar pressuring emerging markets. The forces of reflation, liquidity and demand growth will outweigh this unfolding, temporary setback.
S&P 500 is once again experiencing downswing, yet the VIX hasn‘t truly spiked – and neither has the put/call ratio. While there is no stampede to the exit door, the market internals have deteriorated, and may take more than a few sessions to get repaired. For one, tech is again in the driving seat.
Gold has been quite resilient lately, and yesterday‘s developments also outside of the bonds arena are boding well for the $1,670 bottom hypothesis. Especially given the hints presented above, and that stock market weakness coupled with safe haven play attraction, might help here further.
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All essays, research and information represent analyses and opinions of Monica Kingsley that are based on available and latest data. Despite careful research and best efforts, it may prove wrong and be subject to change with or without notice. Monica Kingsley does not guarantee the accuracy or thoroughness of the data or information reported. Her content serves educational purposes and should not be relied upon as advice or construed as providing recommendations of any kind. Futures, stocks and options are financial instruments not suitable for every investor. Please be advised that you invest at your own risk. Monica Kingsley is not a Registered Securities Advisor. By reading her writings, you agree that she will not be held responsible or liable for any decisions you make. Investing, trading and speculating in financial markets may involve high risk of loss. Monica Kingsley may have a short or long position in any securities, including those mentioned in her writings, and may make additional purchases and/or sales of those securities without notice.
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