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S&P 500 Squeezes to All-Time High Ahead of Greek Bailout Deadline


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

The S&P 500 made a new all-time high today despite ongoing confusion over the economic crisis in Greece.

Overnight, Greek government spokesman Gabriel Sakellaridis said "we will do whatever we can do that a deal is found on Monday."

However, in a morning interview with France 24 Television, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker said Greece and the EU were far from a deal, and that a balanced Greek budget remains vital.

Nonetheless, US and European markets remain highly resilient, implying that most market participants expect a resolution by Monday, Greece's deadline to apply for a bailout extension.

US markets opened positive, but started dipping on the release of the University of Michigan Sentiment survey at 10:00 a.m. ET, which was below expectations.

But equities rallied in the afternoon, and the S&P 500 pushed to a new all-time high at 2097.03 just before the close before settling at 2069.99, up 0.4%.

European economic data was better, as Germany, Italy, and the Eurozone reported above-consensus GDP numbers.

The Baker Hughes Rig Count was 1,398, down 98 or 6.7% from last week. Crude oil initially sold off following the 1:00 p.m. ET release of the data, but it rebounded and traded up 3% on the day. As a result, energy stocks powered higher as the best-performing S&P sector.

Internet security stocks were very strong for the second straight day, led by Cyber-Ark Software (CYBR), which rose 14.95% on its impressive earnings report.

That contributed to broader strength in technology, fueling a 0.75% rally in the NASDAQ Composite.

Tomorrow's Financial Outlook

Markets will be closed Monday in observance of President's day.

As stated above, Monday is Greece's deadline for applying for a bailout extension, and failure to get some kind of resolution would be disastrous for financial markets. US and European markets, including Greece itself, have been strong, implying that a deal is widely expected.

Additionally, while Ukraine and Russia are supposedly on the road to peace, unexpected headlines could also drive volatility.

At 8:30 a.m. ET, February Empire Manufacturing will be released, followed by the February NAHB Housing Market Index at 10:00 a.m.

Goodyear Tire (GT), Medtronic (MDT), and Devon Energy (DVN) will report earnings.

On the international front, Sweden CPI, UK CPI and PPI, German ZEW Economic Sentiment, and Canadian Existing Home Sales will be reported.

Twitter: @Minyanville

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