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Simon Sez

By

Fare ye well into the bell!

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Anticipation
Anticipation
Is making me late
Is keeping me waiting


(Carly Simon)

The afternoon tape continues to scrape as uber-bored traders await their escape. There's been little in the way of excitement today, although Boo will gladly take what the Minx has given him. With the semis (-2%), brokers (-2%), biotechs (-2.8%) and small caps (-1.2%) all under pressure, the onus is on the bulls to pull it together and give pause to the bear cause. Please pay particular attention to S&P 1100--it's a level that was resistance and, by definition, now acts as initial support.

We knew a few things as we powered up today's pup. The financials were the most extended sector (having outperformed during the most recent drubbing) and they continue to set the tone. While the NASDAQ is clearly underperforming (note the internet smackage), the ursine uglies will be hard pressed to further this mess unless they crack the porcelain piggies.

Macro-land is marginally more exciting as the metals jumped higher outa the gate and registered nice gains on the session. It is interesting, if nothing else, that this jig wasn't accompanied by either 1) dollar drubbage or 2) gains in the metal equities (although the latter clearly outperformed on Friday). In further asset class dance, fixed income continues to lift and crude, which was down as much as 4%, is currently trading lower by a deuce.

Beeks will sneak in for breakfast tomorrow with the Chicago PMI (exp. 60) and consumer confidence (exp. 103.5). He'll also make a quick cameo on Wednesday with his take on construction spending (exp. 0.4%), the I to the ISM manufacturing index (exp. 60, prices paid 78.5) and vehicle sales (exp. 16.8 mm, domestic 13.6mm). Other than that, it's quiet is as quiet does, Forrest, and we can expect the technical and psychology metrics to vie for trading attention.

I wish I had something juicier for ye faithful who have braved the crosscurrents but I'll never offer an opinion for the sake of hearing myself speak. Conspiracy theorists I talk with wouldn't be shocked to see some nice rampage into Dubya's big dance but the pragmatist in me continues to feel that electoral uncertainty will hang over this tape until clarity emerges (either way). I'll simply offer that opportunities are made up easier than losses and when in doubt, prudence dictates sitting it out.

And as always, I hope this finds ye faithful with some jingle in their jeans and a smile on their puss.

R.P.
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