The China Syndrome


Fueled by overnight weakness in China, stocks suffered a difficult day. China’s problems revolve around weakening manufacturing data and an economic slowdown which has lingered for some time now. Domestically, the weekly jobless claims were harmless, and LEI (leading economic indicators) came in about as expected which was slightly softer than recent months. In addition, existing home sales bounced back slightly and manufacturing in the Midwest indicated by the Kansas City Fed rebounded modestly. Despite the somewhat benign domestic picture, traders seemed in a sour mood based on continuing emerging market problems.

By the close, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was down 175 points to finish the day at 16,197. The S&P 500 was down 16 points to close at 1828. Gold was up $23 to trade at $1262 per ounce, while oil was up $.49 to trade at $97.22 per barrel WTI.

It really wasn’t too bad a day on the earnings front, but traders were more focused on the emerging markets such as China, and more likely just looking for a reason to do some selling. After the run of last year, some disruption is not only expected, but some may say welcome. We’ll let you know how the week ends tomorrow, but to date January is shaping up to be a disappointing one.

Have a nice evening everyone.

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