1) Third quarter (Q3) gross domestic product was best since Q1 of 2012, though much of it was inventory building);
2) auto sales jumped over 16 million, their highest in six years;
3) October home sales rose to their highest since summer 2008, while permits highest since June 2008;
4) ISM manufacturing rallied to its highest in 2.5 years, and;
5) cyber sales were up 20 percent on Cyber Monday.
The problem for the Federal Reserve--and the markets--is that the trend is not unequivocally up. On the weak side we have:
1) ISM Services sector data;
2) earlier-month home sales reports were relatively soft, and;
3) Retail sales reports--both earnings and same-store sales reports--have disappointed amid a blitz of steep holiday discounts.
Still, if you throw in a budget deal, which may happen next week, you can certainly argue that the economy is slowly improving. To a certain extent, the market is reflecting this by way of:
1) economically sensitive stocks (Tech, Consumer Cyclicals, Financials, Industrials), which have led the market in the last month, and;
2) defensive stocks (Consumer Staples) and interest rate sensitive stocks (Telecom, Homebuilders), all of which have lagged.
"As long as that 10yr says below 3 percent, money flows easiest path is into US equities," Roberto Friedlander, head of Equity Trading at Brean Capital, told me this morning.