Traders Want To Believe Worst Is About Over, But...
Despite strong economic reports early on (both the weekly jobless claims and Personal Consumption Expenditures came in below expectations), the major indices ended on their lows for the day and the week.
Oil hit $108 intraday, but shortly after that energy stocks showed signs of exhaustion as even market leaders like Apache ended in the red for the day.
Financial stocks have sold off two days in a row and given up a part of last week's gains; Lehman and Merrill Lynch were weak on reports of strong option activity--Lehman told reporters midday that rumors about the company were "totally unfounded."
Many traders have told me that people badly want to believe we are in the 8th inning of this whole thing but we don seem to be. I think until we see these first quarter earnings, between April 10 and 20th, we are likely to be in a range-bound environment.
Techs, which also were strong last week, were down today on some disappointment with Oracle's revenues.
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