Despite a positive trade report, the Dow isn’t giving the kind of follow-up to its milestone day that investors were expecting. The Dow is negative this morning after crossing the 11,000 mark for the first time in 18 months, sending exchange traded funds (ETFs) lower.
The U.S. trade deficit grew to 7.4% in February on an increase in imports, which is a sign that consumers are finally buying more. Imports increased 1.7% as Americans purchased more computers and televisions made overseas. Exports rose to the highest level since October 2008. If we’re going to replenish the depleted inventories, though, consumers need to keep up the purchases of overseas products. Consumer Discretionary Select Sector SPDR (NYSEArca: XLY) is flat so far today. [ETF Strategies for a Retail Rebound.]
Alcoa (NYSE: AA) was first up this earnings season after the market close yesterday with results that were largely seen as disappointing. While its first-quarter loss dropped to $201 million from $497 million in the same period a year earlier, the rest of the report didn’t light the markets on fire. Sales rose 18% in the quarter, but analysts predicted 26% growth. iShares Dow Jones U.S. Basic Materials (NYSEArca: IYM) is down 1% this morning; Alcoa is 3.4%. [How China’s Buying Spree Benefits Commodity ETFs.]
Demand for Greek debt is strong this morning. The government unloaded $1.1 billion worth of 26-week bills at a 4.55% yield and attracted bids 7.67 times what they were offered. Greece also sold an additional $1.1 billion worth of 52-week securities at a 4.85% yield. SPDR Barclays Capital International Treasury Bond (NYSEArca: BWX) is flat so far this morning; Greece is 4.2%. [Who’s Driving the Bond ETF Market?]
After the market’s close today, Intel (NASDAQ: INTC) and CSX (NYSE: CSX) will report earnings. Technology Select Sector SPDR (NYSEArca: XLK) is down slightly; Intel is 4.6%. This ETF is worth watching in the coming days; Google (NASDAQ: GOOG) reports earnings on Thursday, while Apple (NASDAQ: AAPL) and Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) are up next week.
The opinions and forecasts expressed herein are solely those of Tom Lydon, and may not actually come to pass. Information on this site should not be used or construed as an offer to sell, a solicitation of an offer to buy, or a recommendation for any product.