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MV Weather Report: Springtime for Bernanke?


Rain or shine, we review the day's biggest stock stories.

Today's FOMC Cha-Cha-Cha (as it's often referred to on these pages) was a non-event. The Fed said it would hold the target rate steady and leave the amount of the purchase program unchanged. Which was just what the Street was expecting.

The market traded strong all day but it did sell off after the announcement. The biggest winners of the day where technology stocks led by: Apple (AAPL), Baidu (BIDU), Research in Motion (RIMM) and Amazon (AMZN).

As for the S&P 500 it closed at 900 up 0.65% well off the high of the day of 910. The bulls will take it. The sentiment has shifted since the false breakout at 950. News is now greeted with selling pressure; a month ago, it sparked buying.

Minyanville Professor Quint Tatro has noticed this as well, and buzzed today about possible short patterns emerging.

"It is very easy to over think the action today. We've come in quite quickly the last 2 weeks and now we're seeing a pretty decent bounce. Similar to what we saw last week before Monday's drop. Many charts have become technically vulnerable to much more downside as trends have broken and resistance levels have held.

"Yet with so many stocks looking as if they are setting up as shorts, why is it so hard to start building short inventory? Well, it's quite simple. The 'what ifs' come into play and with such news on tap as the FOMC and treasury auction results, one cannot help to think that maybe they're being lured into the latest bear trap.

"I find it helpful to strike a balance starting to nibble back into the short side, with clear stops in place, but yet leaving enough capital idle to avoid a capital bias thus being able to shift gears in the event we continue to move higher."

After today's bear trap, bulls will need some positive data points from initial claims and final first-quarter GDP. The estimates for initial claims are 608,000, as compared with last week's number of 608,000. GDP is expected to fall 5.7%.

The wild card from today's session: Ben Bernanke's term as Fed chairman is coming up for renewal. Traders aren't sure if Mr. Bernanke will be brought back, especially given the current mess over the Bank of America (BAC)/ Merrill Lynch merger. There' s not much on this story yet, but I would keep a close eye on it as details start to unfold.

Have a great night, Minyans!
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No positions in stocks mentioned.

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