The news overall has been poorly received. Retail sales were up a little, but widely missed consensus estimates (.2% vs .6% previous and .5% consensus). Best Buy (NYSE:BBY) missed estimates again ($.47 vs $.51 estimated). This is the season when you'd expect Same Store Sales to be positive but they were down (-.1%). Nevertheless, markets shrugged this off early on hopes that the Bernank would deliver the goods with more QE--which didn't happen, and everything negative.
So what we have now is little confidence in Europe and an obvious pattern of a developing recession. The slowdown in China is becoming clearer; Brazil GDP is also moving rapidly lower; India reported its first industrial output decline in 2 years after 13 straight interest rate increases, and so it goes.
Earnings warnings are becoming more ubiquitous and will challenge forward-looking PE estimates, not to mention stock prices.
The problem we face with low interest rates presently is they're killingseniors and savers and haven't helped the housing market one bit. A high supply of bank owned inventory sits without resolution but needs large bulk sales. It sounds cruel, but letting it fester does more damage overall. Announcing that interest rates will stay low for another two years doesn't stimulate potential home buyers to act. They figure time is on their side and prices keep falling, so why do anything? Further, corporations are hording cash and find it more rewarding (at least for those with stock options) to buy back shares rather than payout dividends or make useful investments beyond buying up the competition.
The bottom line Tuesday is stocks were sold hard after bulls had a chance to digest the non-news from the Fed. The Bulls launched a programmed "stick save" on the DJIA at the 200 day moving average, but no other index could match that. Gold continued to fall as the dollar rose and bond prices were strong.
And the beat goes on...
Volume increased substantially on Tuesday especially after the Fed announcement. Breadth per the WSJ remains negative.