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Is This Rally For Real?

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Investors want to know if the stock market has turned a corner. And who better to ask than legendary investor Barton Biggs!

As you might know Bigg’s is somewhat bullish on the current market. In his Newsweek column Biggs writes “green shoots are appearing not just in the shrubbery but in sickly economies.”

In fact Biggs is impressed by the economic activity all around the world. He says as of last week he spotted 40 signs that the environment was starting to improve.

Biggs watches PMI numbers closely around the world. We won't get into those numbers here because the data can make your eyes glaze over.

But in a nutshell he interprets them to mean “global manufacturing is improving – it’s gone up for three straight month after 12 consecutive losses."

And that’s not all. Biggs also says consumer demand has strengthened, new orders are up and inventories have fallen to new lows. “The classic economic recovery begins with new orders and output rising, spending stabilizing, and inventories falling.”

It seems to Biggs that all those ducks are lining up in a row.

And that bodes well for stocks.

Why, you ask?

Because “the stock market is a very perceptive forecaster of the direction of the economy.” In other words, since the market is a leading indictor – and data shows initial signs of strength in economies all around the world, the market could have turned a critical corner.

Now Biggs isn’t wearing blinders. He tells Fast Money that there are still big concerns about retail and housing. And if something blows up in either area then all bets are off.

But short of that, he’s optimistic. Well cautiously optimistic.

What’s the bottom line? According to Barton Biggs, “this could be a cyclical bull market that takes us to 1050 or 1100 on the S&P”—in other words the rally should hold.


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Trader disclosure: On Apr 17th, 2009, the following stocks and commodities mentioned or intended to be mentioned on CNBC’s Fast Money were owned by the Fast Money traders; Seymour Owns (AAPL), (BAC), (EEM), (FCX), (GE), (RIG), (TCK); Karabell Owns (AAPL), (CSCO), (CAT), (FCX), (FXI), (FIC), (GOOG), (JPM); Najarian Owns (BX) Call Spread; Najarian Owns (INTC) Call Spread; Najarian Owns (MCD) & (MCD) Calls; Najarian Owns (PALM); Najarian Owns (RIO) Calls; Najarian owns (VAR) Call Spread; Najarian Owns (XHB) Call Spread; Najarian Owns (PCU) Calls; Terranova Owns (AMGN), (DELL), (IBM), (BP), (MS); Terranova Owns (X) & (X) Calls; Terranova Owns (DIS) Calls; Terranova Owns (COP) Calls; Terranova Owns (HES) & (HES) Calls; Terranova Owns (JPM) & (JPM) Calls; Terranova Owns (INTC) & (INTC) Calls; Terranova Owns (XOM) & (XOM) Calls; Terranova Owns (WYNN) & (WYNN) Calls

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