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European Money Could Take S&P 500 to New All-Time High

While the index again failed to breach 1,565.15, we are seeing a small resurgence in demand for U.S. stocks


Well, the S&P once again missed its target of 1,565.15. Stocks fell on the opening Wednesday on new fears of whether the European Union can hold together. Shortly after the intraday lows, the market rallied for the remainder of the day; however, it was unable to overcome the early weakness and closed mixed.

Problems with Cyprus’ banks and a call for new elections in Italy, along with economic weakness in France and the U.K., caused disruptions in European and U.S. markets. But U.S. markets became the beneficiary as foreign money, seeking a safe haven, helped overcome the initial 0.8% loss.

At the close, the Dow Jones Industrial Average was off 33 points at 14,526, the S&P 500 fell 1 point to 1,563, and the Nasdaq rose 4 points to 3,257. The NYSE traded 596 million shares and the Nasdaq crossed 329 million. On the Big Board, advancers slightly outnumbered decliners, but on the Nasdaq, decliners had a small edge.

SPX Chart
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Trade of the Day Chart Key

The S&P 500 again pounded against its all-time high of 1,565.15 only to fall back and fail to finally break the log-jam. Resistance at 1,564 has been firm for 12 days, but the MACD indicator is curling up, showing a small resurgence in demand for U.S. stocks.

DJI Chart
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The Dow industrials, too, have struggled to close higher, but the senior index has a string of new closing highs, and on Tuesday, punched through to a new record high in the final minutes of trading.

Conclusion: The money flow that created Tuesday’s high in the Dow appears to be mostly from European investors seeking a place where their money has a chance to grow faster than -40% (the penalty that is proposed to be assessed on large depositors in Cypriot banks).

Rather than taking a chance on smaller-cap stocks, they went for the Dow blue chips, U.S. Treasury bonds, and even the U.S. dollar. And so what at first seemed bad for everyone, now appears to be good for the United States. But the public believes that we are just the best of the worst, and that is why the indices are struggling to make new highs. 

Today’s Trading Landscape

To see a list of the companies reporting earnings today, click here.

For a list of this week’s economic reports due out, click here.

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