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Weighing The Week Ahead: Can Markets Continue To Shrug Off Political Turmoil?

Jeff Miller profile picture
Jeff Miller


  • Economic news, especially employment, remains strong.
  • Threatened tariffs seem to have some wiggle room for negotiating with allies.
  • Corporate earnings remain strong.
  • "Headline risks" pile up, but investors seem not to care.
  • Quantifying risks - and separating the speculative from the tangible - is the key for investors.

The economic calendar is normal with emphasis on inflation data and housing news. These routine reports continue in the background as the Washington headlines continue. We would all like to focus on markets, but the daily news flow emphasizes the turmoil. Many people are asking:

How can markets ignore the political turmoil?

Last Week Recap

My last edition of WTWA, I expected a focus on whether the US would launch a trade war. I also suggested that the original Administration tariff threats might well be eased in the face of complaints from allies, both at home and abroad. Both proved correct, helping us to maintain our stock positions.

The Story in One Chart

I always start my personal review of the week by looking at a great chart. The Investing.com version of the S&P futures shows the action while the stock market is closed. The interactive version also lets you specify your choice of both time and intervals. Finally, there is a tag for significant news at various key points.

A close up of a map Description generated with very high confidence

The gain this week included a 3.5% trading range, a bit lower than recent volatility. I summarize actual and implied volatility each week in the Indicator Snapshot.

Personal Note

I am enjoying my vacation, but sharing a few thoughts this weekend. If possible, I’ll update the indicators next week as well.

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 was very good. ISM services and the jobs numbers – both ADP and BLS – were excellent. The economic strength continues, but with less apparent pressure on wages. Everyone loved this employment report (

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/we have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours. 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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