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US Markets Follow Yesterday's Weakness, Closing on the Lows


Today's financial recap and tomorrow's financial outlook.

US risk assets opened the day weaker. The most commonly cited reasons for the weakness were the decision by the US government to begin closing tax inversion loopholes that allow US companies to avoid paying taxes in the US, and reports of new airstrikes in Syria. Preliminary September manufacturing data for China, reported overnight, was stronger, but only reflected a small pickup in strength for the economy. This actually led Australian stocks and the Aussie dollar higher as this was perceived to be enough to cause more stimulus to be used in China. Preliminary manufacturing reports for Europe - specifically the two largest economies France and Germany - were less-than-stellar, leading to sharp weakness in European stocks.

The S&P 500 (SPX) ended up bouncing in the opening minutes to fill the gap that was made in the futures. However, after stabilizing in the first hour, equities began to turn over, led by weakness in small cap stocks. The SPX ended up retesting the low of the day and briefly making new lows. All 10 sectors of the S&P 500 were negative today and a last minute bout of selling ended up pushing the benchmark index down to its lows of the day, down 0.58%.

Gold and other commodities were stronger at the beginning of the session in sympathy to the weakness in the dollar, but those trends were reversed by the end of the day. By the time stocks opened, the US dollar had recorded its worth single day performance in the past four months. Crude oil had a strong day, despite the turnaround in the dollar. Market participants were perceived to be nervous about the strikes in Syria where a number of Arab oil producers are participating.

Apple (AAPL) was one standout that kept the market's head above water throughout the day. It closed up 1.29% in today's trading. The stock is the largest weighting in both the S&P 500 and Nasdaq-100. Yesterday's news that the company sold a record amount of new iPhone's in its opening weekend continued to buoy the stock price.

Tomorrow's Financial Outlook

The only piece of economic data scheduled for tomorrow is August new home sales. Up to this point, August home sales data has all come in below expectations. Tomorrow's new home sales are expected to rise to an annualized rate of 430K from 412K in the month prior. Also on the schedule is speeches from Federal Reserve Presidents Mester and Evans. Mester, a voter after taking over for Sandra Pianalto, is perceived to be hawkish, but has only made one public appearance since taking her new position. Conversely, President Charles Evans is very dovish.

Across the rest of the world, a preliminary Japanese manufacturing PMI for September is due out. Also, the German IFO survey of professional investors economic expectations and feelings towards the current economic situation are due out. Lastly, because activity in Syria is becoming an increasing hot button topic, be on the lookout for any new developments overnight. The same can be said for China.

Earnings reports due out tomorrow are from KB Home (KBH) and Vail Resorts (MTN).

Twitter: @Minyanville

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No positions in stocks mentioned.

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