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Huge Week: Economic Indicators, FOMC

The joust here is between what the Street sees for earnings growth in Q4 and Q1 of 2014 and the reality of a change in the Fed’s five-year policy of economic stimulation, generally known as

The joust here is between what the Street sees for earnings growth in Q4 and Q1 of 2014 and the reality of a change in the Fed’s five-year policy of economic stimulation, generally known as quantitative easing (QE).

   A policy change in the form of a modest taper is becoming widely accepted as a done deal a process that will be implemented gradually assuming the economic numbers justify it..

   A taper to  buying $65 billion a monthy in bonds from $85 billion is not the issue.     

   What is important is that it IS A CHANGE in Fed policy and more changes will follow.

   If the Street feels comfortable with that, look for another leg up in the stock market, if not starting in August, then in the fall.

   If the reality of a change in Fed policy causes the Street to re-think its current indifference, we are looking at an 8% to 12% correction.


   So far, the bulls have the edge, continually stepping in to buy on any drop in prices.  This suggests an initial taper by the Fed is of little concern as long as interest rates do not rise much further.

   Technically, the market looks like it is on solid ground capable of another surge in prices.

   The catalyst for a turn up or down stands to come from the impact of the many economic reports issued and comments following the FOMC meeting ending Wednesday. (SEE schedule below).

   Little has been expected from the Q2 earnings reports currently being released, but Q3 earnings are seen as approximating a gain of 6.6% followed by a gain of 11.8% for Q4 (very preliminary). Support is DJIA 15,498 (S&P 500: 1,685). Resistance: DJIA 15,596 (S&P 500: 1,695).  These levels are suspect, anything can happen this week  with the reports on the economy and  the  Street’s parsing of the FOMC’s commentary

Investor’s first read– an edge before the open

DJIA:  15,558.83

S&P 500: 1,691.65

Nasdaq  Comp.: 3,613.16

Russell 2000:  1,048.51

Monday, July 29, 2013         (9:10 a.m.)


   Apple(AAPL: $440.91 )

   While Q2 revenues were flat and earnings down 20%, the latter “beat” the Street’s projections.  iPhone sales were the surprise, up 20% vs. a year ago.

   Analysts will be revisiting estimates and we can expect some changes in ratings.  With a double bottom “in” at $385, AAPL can be expected to attack resistance between $460 and $470, but not in a straight line.

   Friday’s market action was positive. AAPL’s drop to $434.34 was quickly reversed and buying picked up at the close.  Support is $436,  AAPL can move across $450.


FACEBOOK (FB – $34.01 )

FB shares soared Thursday as Q2 revenues of $1.81 billion beat Street projections of $1.62 billion big-time. Net income more than doubled in the quarter  to $333 million from $157 million a year ago. Its monthly active users increased 21% over a year ago. Mobile ad sales accounted for 41% of total revenues up from 30% in Q1.

Today: FB has been trading actively on the upside before the open, suggesting two days of sideways consolidation will  override the need for a correction and pave the way for  a move across $35 and higher.



Huge week for reports on the economy plus more insight on Fed policy coming out of the FOMC meetings Tuesday and Wednesday.

   For a detailed account of past and current economic reports, including charts go to:


Pending Home Sales Ix. (10:00)  Proj.: minus 1.4 pct

Dallas Fed. Mfg. Svy. (10:30) Proj.:  6.4 for July unchanged from June


FOMC meeting begins

ICSC Goldman Store Sales (7:45)  

S&P Case-Shiller Home Price Ix. 9:00   Proj.:  +1.3 pct m/m May, +12.3 pct y/y

Consumer Confidence (10:00)   Proj.: 81.0 July  vs. 81.4 June


ADP Employment (8:15)  Proj,: 179,000 July

GDP – Q2  (8:30)  Proj.: +1.1 pct annual rate

Employment Cost Ix.(8:30)  Proj.:  +0.4 pct Q2

Chicago PMI (9:45)   Proj.: 54.0 July  vs. 51.6 in June vs. 58.6 May

FOMC meeting announcement (2:00 PM)  QE commentary possible


Jobless Claims (8:30)  Proj.: 345,000 for 7/27 vs. 343,000 7/20

PMI Mfg. Ix. (8:58)   Proj.: 53.1 July

ISM Mfg Ix. (10:00)   Proj.: 53.1 July vs. 50.9 in June  and 49.0 May

Construction Spending (10:00)  Proj.: +0.4 pct June


Employment Situation (8:30)  Proj.: 175,000 July (nonfarm), 187,000 (private), Unemployment rate 7.5 pct

Personal Income/Outlays 8:30)   Proj,: +0.4 pct June

Factory Orders (10:00)  Proj.: +2.3 pct June vs. +2.1 pct May

  George  Brooks

“Investor’s first read – an edge before the open”

[email protected]


The writer of  Investor’s first read, George Brooks,  is not registered as an investment advisor.  Ideas expressed herein are the opinions of the writer, are for informational purposes, and are not to serve as the sole basis for any investment decision. Readers are expected to assume full responsibility for conducting their own research pursuant to investment decisions in keeping with their tolerance for risk.





The astronomer Carl Sagan said, “It was easy to predict mass car ownership but hard to predict Walmart.”