Trading Nation

Why stocks aren’t rising after dovish Fed statement

Overblown market pessimism presenting 'absolute buys': Pro

A regular old dovish statement may not be good enough for stocks.

After the Federal Reserve released its January policy statement, stocks quickly staged a retreat, and gold rose.

This despite the fact that the statement itself was seen as skewing — if anything — mildly dovish.

In changes to the January statement as compared to December, the Fed replaced the clause "economic activity has been expanding at a moderate pace" with the less enthusiastic "labor market conditions improved further even as economic growth slowed late last year." Market inflation measures have now "declined further."

And in the big addition to the statement, the Fed made clear that it is "closely monitoring global economic and financial developments," which have been pretty unambiguously negative.

Read More Here's what changed in the new Fed statement

Taken together, this would seem to imply that the U.S. central bank has become less inclined to raise rates this year, at the margins.

"The market is viewing the Fed statement as more dovish," Societe Generale's Larry McDonald said Wednesday on CNBC's "Power Lunch."

The reason that the dovish statement is "not getting a lot of people excited on the equities side," he added, is that "the beast in the equities market needs a higher bar; it need more dovishness to get excited."

Cowen's head of equity sales trading, David Seaburg, sees it a bit differently.

"This was really a priced-in event," Seaburg said Wednesday, also on the "Trading Nation" segment. "It's a sell-on-the-news [scenario]. We saw a big move yesterday, [so] this is traders taking profits."

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