Dollar Strength Not Hurting Stocks
Dollar up on stronger U.S. jobs report, but stocks not suffering. Normally, we would see commodities and commodity stocks down on a stronger dollar, but the combination of a stronger U.S. jobs report, and some indications that China will likely have a soft landing, not a hard landing, are helping to support markets. Copper up 1.8 percent.
So here's the usual chorus of, "Gee, if the U.S. economy is doing better why aren't stocks up more?"
Two points: 1) stocks ARE up, silly: the S&P 500 is up almost 9 percent year to date, one of the best starts in decades, and 2) some holding out hoping for more QE3 may be more inclined to sell. I'll take stronger economic growth over QE3 any day.
DJ Home Construction Index up 3.5 percent today, at multiyear highs; spring traffic improving, early spring sales look good. Hovnanian reported earlier this week that February sales looked up 30 percent; today Dan Oppenheim at Credit Suisse upgraded several homebuilders: "We've seen sharply higher buyer traffic in our monthly survey of real estate agents, which has been a good indicator of the stocks."
Indeed: the survey showed the highest level of buyer traffic since the survey started in 2005.
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