Ilczyszyn: The Trade Ahead of the Fed
The Fed is expected to make the investor's job easy. Don't miss the move.
The Fed will likely keep the throttle wide open today as "Operation Twist" comes to an end. I am expecting the formation of a new bond purchasing agreement, as well as new verbiage outlining a policy tied to specific economic indicators (GDP) going into 2013 and beyond. What does that mean for inventors? In simple terms, the Federal Government has your investing / trading "back." Bernanke has committed to the easy money policy, and it is designed to get us into risk asset, i.e. stocks.
But with interest rates at record lows, who are the losers? The savers are. If your money is in the bank, you're losing roughly .05% a year, as the rate on inflation is around 2%, and we all know inflation is higher if you include food and energy.
The market seems to pricing in a deal on the "fiscal cliff" before year's end, what happens if we don't see one? What if, instead, more of the same policies get pushed further down the road? Do you run out and buy stocks across the board? No! Buy the corrections, and use common sense. In this market environment, buying the corrections has made sense and cents. A balanced approach is key here.
So with that said, what's the trading outlook for today?
Equities fought off a late day pullback to enjoy a nice close yesterday. The S&P is currently trading above 1434, and putting in new highs on this swing. With optimism out of Washington being accompanied by the expectation of more FOMC easing, the path of least resistance is higher.
The term "melt up" has been used, but I do not believe there is a large enough short position in the market for this, since sentiment has been relatively bullish above 1400. However, a retest above 1450-1460 can and should encourage additional buying. Yesterday's pullback was a very tough buy in the face of discouraging comments from Reid, but the market did hold the previous highs at 1424, and has created a solid support level.
Today's key level? 1431.75. A close above that level will pivot the market.