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Weighing The Week Ahead: A Seinfeld Market?

Jeff Miller profile picture
Jeff Miller


  • The economic calendar is light, but pundits must write.
  • The result is a story about nothing, attempting to find themes to tie to the long market rally. How often can you say "all is well."
  • Chair Yellen will grab the spotlight with Congressional testimony.
  • Investors with a sound process can find attractive stocks in many sectors.

Trading desks will be closer to normal staffing. Chair Yellen’s biannual Congressional testimony will be a feature on Wednesday and Thursday, but the economic calendar is light. With little going on, the punditry will be wondering:

What should we expect for the rest of 2017?

Last Week Recap

The big economic news last week featured employment - as expected. The start of the G20 meetings and North Korean missile tests grabbed some headlines, but without much effect on stocks.

The Story in One Chart

I always start my personal review of the week by looking at this great chart from Doug Short via Jill Mislinski. Despite the Thursday selling, the result for the week was essentially unchanged (up 0.07%). Not much in the way of fireworks!

Doug has a special knack for pulling together all the relevant information. His charts save more than a thousand words! Read the entire post for several more charts providing long-term perspective, including the size and frequency of drawdowns.

The News

Each week I break down events into good and bad. For our purposes, “good” has two components. The news must be market friendly and better than expectations. I avoid using my personal preferences in evaluating news - and you should, too!

The economic news last week was good.

The Good

  • ISM Manufacturing registered 57.8, both an increase and a beat of expectations. The ISM notes that this level, if annualized, corresponds to a GDP increase of 4.6% and the figures for the YTD suggest a gain of 4.1% (I think it is time for it to update its regression model). To provide some color, let’s look at the comments it cites.

"Overall, business is strong. We are seeing price increases for packaging and handling materials as well as some MRO supplies." (Plastics & Rubber Products)

This article was written by

Jeff Miller profile picture
Seeking Alpha mourns the passing of Jeff Miller, on May 7, 2021. During his time at Seeking Alpha, Jeff attracted a following of close to 40,000 readers and published more than 1,500 articles. He was a portfolio manager at Incline Investment Advisors, LLC. Jeff also was President of NewArc Investments, Inc., and served as a university professor.....................................................................................................................................Jeff is Portfolio Manager for Incline Investment Advisors, LLC.,manager of both individual and institutional investments. A registered investment advisor, he was formerly President of NewArc Investments, Inc. Jeff is a former college professor with a hands-on, real world attitude. His quantitative modeling helped inform state and local officials in Wisconsin for more than a decade. A Public Policy analyst, he taught advanced research methods at the University of Wisconsin, and analyzed many issues related to state tax policy. Jeff began in the financial business as Research Director for a trading firm at the Chicago Board Options Exchange. He investigated anomalies in the standard option pricing models, taught classes for beginning options traders, and developed new forecasting techniques. In 1991 he established a general research consultancy, working with professional traders at all of the Chicago financial exchanges. In 1998 he started NewArc Investments, Inc. Jeff has a commitment to the specific needs of individual investors. It is not a one-size-fits all approach, but one that emphasizes the unique circumstances of each client. Jeff also serves on the board of a small technology company. He occasionally serves as an expert witness in legal cases involving financial markets and hedging.

Analyst’s Disclosure: I am/we are long ADM, GILD, CELG, LRCX. I wrote this article myself, and it expresses my own opinions. I am not receiving compensation for it. I have no business relationship with any company whose stock is mentioned in this article.

Seeking Alpha's Disclosure: Past performance is no guarantee of future results. No recommendation or advice is being given as to whether any investment is suitable for a particular investor. Any views or opinions expressed above may not reflect those of Seeking Alpha as a whole. Seeking Alpha is not a licensed securities dealer, broker or US investment adviser or investment bank. Our analysts are third party authors that include both professional investors and individual investors who may not be licensed or certified by any institute or regulatory body.

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