Ten years ago today, on July 15, 2009 Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band opened the North American leg of their reunion tour before 20,000 ecstatic fans at the Continental Airlines Arena located “somewhere in the swamps of Jersey”. It is hard to overestimate the excitement generated at the time by the E Streeter’s first hometown concert in over a decade; the evening had an unmistakable air of magic. For local fans like me, the evening marked the rebirth of a legendary band and a joyous meeting across the river.
This morning traders are looking to corporate earnings for signs of economic rebirth and Intel’s announcement after last night’s close has given investors fresh hope that perhaps the market has turned a corner and is headed for better days. For the last several weeks traders have been muttering “I’m goin’ down” as they have ridden a market that resembled a downbound train, but the market has recovered much of the gains generated by the rising that began in March. The lift from Intel may not signal that the market has truly entered the promised land, but a few more days of upward momentum may cause the shorts to yell “cover me”!
The pundits this morning will likely be discussing the health care legislation put forth by the Democratic house leadership, and most of them will be focusing on the price you pay. Many will find a reason to believe that dramatic change is coming to the American health care system but the finished product may not turn out to be all that radical. While we may see some weakness in the healthcare and pharma names as the proposal works its way through the legislative process those names may firm as the inevitable compromises and concessions are made to ensure passage. With the President Obama’s approval ratings deteriorating, perhaps because of overreaching, Washington observers expect him to take a pragmatic approach and abandon some of his more idealistic goals. After all it’s hard to be a saint in that city.
Bullish investors have been working on a dream, one in which the stimulus package kicks the economy into gear and gets lots of unemployed folks jobs working on the highway. While it may require a leap of faith to buy into the market with both hands, it’s helpful to remember that just a few months ago, traders banking on an economic recovery were thought to have been countin’ on a miracle. Now that the global system appears to have averted a total breakdown, optimistic types are reentering the market and right now stocks look born to run.
Wall Street hopes that those bulls are not merely livin’ in the future and that the glory days are truly returning in the here and now. Things have been tough here in my city of ruins these last few months (I’ll admit that one’s a stretch), but with a decent earnings season underway traders may once again come to believe that they live in lucky town.
The market may be taking baby steps, but as a wise man once said, “From Small Things (Big Things One Day Come)”.
Disclosure: No positions