It looked like the bulls had broken free from the recent resistance levels for most of the trading session, as the S&P was forging new highs and making things very uncomfortable for the bears. But continued bad news out of Ukraine’s Crimea finally dampened traders enthusiasm and stocks gave up all their gains as the Dow went from triple digit gains to a 40 point loss in a very short period of time. Stocks did recover some by the close, but traders are tentative about making commitments into a weekend when there is global political turmoil to worry about.
When all was said and done, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was up 49 points to close at 16,321. The S&P 500, after touching 1867, finished the day at 1859, up 5 points. Gold was down $6 to trade at $1325 per ounce, while oil was up $.05 to trade at $102.45 per barrel WTI. The good news for the bulls was that the S&P did remain above the recent resistance of 1848 to 1850. The bears can take comfort in the fact that they have been able to reverse rallies all week long. As I’ve pointed out, I don’t like late day weakness and intraday reversals, but the bulls have been able to hang onto the high ground for the moment.
On the economic front, 4th quarter GDP was revised downward from growth of 3.2% to 2.4%, yikes. On the other hand, despite horrible weather both the Chicago PMI and Pending Home Sales were better than expected, which helped fuel the rise in share prices early in the trading session. We’ll keep an eye on the Russia/Ukraine situation as well as the plethora of economic data next week, not the least of which is the employment numbers on Friday. Let’s see how March unfolds.
Have a great weekend everyone.