An Encouraging Market Sign

Bob Pisani is off; this post was written by CNBC producer Robert Hum.

An encouraging sign Tuesday for the markets: for the first time in a while, stocks shrugged off concerns overseas and have responded well to encouraging economic news here in the U.S.

Two stronger-than-expected economic reports at 10am ET helped the markets reverse their early morning losses. April construction spending saw its biggest rise in nearly a decade, jumping 2.7 percent — outpacing the 0.1 percent estimate by economists. Meanwhile, although the ISM Index slipped slightly from 60.4 in April to 59.7 in May, it still showed slightly greater-than-expected expansion in the U.S. manufacturing sector.

Despite the market’s reversal, energy and materials stocks are currently hovering near the lows of the day.

Perhaps a small positive sign for today’s trade (at the very least)...prior to today, the Dow has closed up on the first trading day of the month during each of the past 7 consecutive months.

However, one day of gains isn’t a reason for traders to celebrate. The Dow still has not mustered up 2 straight days of gains in over a month now (the last one occurred on April 28 & 29).

In fact, the Dow had only 6 days of gains throughout the entire month of May — a rare feat for any month of the year. Since 1980, such an occurrence has only happened 4 other times, including the months of September 2001 and February 2009 (immediately prior to the lows last year).

But with a new month started, traders now hope that the markets can put behind them a miserable May (down 7.9 percent). Unfortunately, those traders would also point out that the Dow has declined in the month of June for 5 straight years and 8 of the past 10 years.

One sign of hope: the Dow has not strung together consecutive monthly declines since January and February 2009 (the tail end of its 6-month losing streak).

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