Daily Commentary: July 07, 2023

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Market Flat After the Jobs Report

Posted by Peter Stolcers on July 07

Lower than expected job growth and higher wages balance out.

PRE-OPEN MARKET COMMENTS FRIDAY – Traders are trying to latch onto any news they can find and we’ve had plenty of economic releases. The underlying goal of central banks is to slow economic growth to the point where inflation subsides without causing a recession. So far, they have been able to walk this tight rope.

We’ve seen the most aggressive tightening ever in the last year and most Fed members believe that there will be two more rate hikes this year (50 basis points total). The market has been pricing in a rate cut this year. That gap will close and interest rates are moving higher. They are also moving higher in Europe. This will provide a headwind for the market.

Domestic economic releases have been solid (GDP, durable goods and ISM services). Job growth has been strong and ADP reported 497K new jobs in the private sector during the month of June. They process payrolls and I trust their number more than I trust the jobs report which showed that 209K jobs were created in June. The BLS report is filled with seasonal adjustments. The hourly wage component came in at .4% which is a bit “hot” (inflationary).

What does all of this mean? From a fundamental standpoint the Fed has been able to aggressively tighten and economic growth has been strong enough to shoulder the rate hikes. I doubt another 50 basis points in the next 6 months will topple the economy. Some institutions got interest rates wrong and they will have to adjust (take losses). I believe this could present an issue for the market as we get closer to September.

From a technical perspective, the market has been in a nice up trend and it has broken through technical resistance levels. We are well above all of the major MAs and that is a sign that the market is slightly over-extended. The attempt this week to get through the recent high has been rejected and a double top could be forming. The volume has been very light since triple witching.

I have a very neutral market bias through mid-August.

The reaction this morning has been “soft”. Initially the market rallied (bad news is good news) on the lower than expected job growth. I believe that the wage component might be the reason. Slower economic growth and higher inflation is NOT what the Fed wants. We saw some selling pressure yesterday and I believe that we will test the low from Thursday. That also coincides with AVWAPQ.

From a day trading standpoint, the range yesterday was wide and this is likely to be an “inside day”. We want nice brisk movement early in the day. Test the low from Thursday with vigor and then breach it convincingly or bounce from it violently. This has to come on heavy volume. A light volume drift is not what we want. If we see that it will be a tough day and you need to keep your trade count down. Long candles of a single color on heavy volume is the key today.

Support is at the SPY AVWAPQ ($437.29) and resistance is at the high from Thursday.

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