The main focus this week will be on President Trump's speech to Congress and Chair Yellen's speech which is the last before the blackout period. US durable goods, ISM, the BoC rate decision, EZ CPI, UK PMIs and a busy calendar in Australia & Scandinavia also coming up.
In a quiet night for markets, in which the top highlight was the Oscar's historic peddling of best picture "fake news" and where "millions" of Academy members seemingly voted illegally, European stocks were little changed after a selloff that pushed them to a two-week low, while the MSCI Asia index fells as Japan’s Topix dropped for third day. S&P futures were unchanged.
Consumer confidence fell for the first time since November’s election, as party lines divided Americans following a boost in enthusiasm for Trump's economic policies. Democrats and Republicans are sharply divided on whether they expect a boom or bust, with independent voters leaning more toward optimism to boost the broader gauge.
The near-record string of 10 consecutive Dow Industrials record highs, a streak not seen since early 1987, may be about to end if futures, which are currently trading -0.3% lower, fail to stage a rebound.
In this holiday-shortened week, attention will be on the US FOMC minutes, housing data and consumer confidence. There will be GDP, PMI and inflation releases across the Euro Area as well as the latest Greek Eurogroup meeting. Look for GDP and public finances data in the UK.
Despite US markets being closed in observance of Washington's birthday, S&P futures spiked during overnight trading, reaching new all time highs before fading some of the gains. Both Asian and European markets traded modestly higher after paring early gains.
"Post-election rally closed the valuation gap with the P/E now near “fair”. The current fitted S&P 500 trailing P/E of 19.6x reflects "animal spirits." Accordingly, the current P/E of 19.4x, although high by historical standards, is far from pricing excessive optimism, based on our model." - Barclays
European and Asian stocks, S&P futures, bond yields, the dollar and commodity metals are rose, in some cases making new all time highs, lifted by the latest reemergence of the "Trump trades" as hopeful investors once again bet that the U.S. president's tax reform plans will boost economic growth and corporate profits, despite another warning from Goldman that the president's fiscal plan is about to be derailed.
"There is quite significant uncertainty about what's actually going to happen, I don’t think anyone quite knows what’s going to come out of the process which involves both the administration and Congress in the deciding of fiscal policy and a variety of other things."
After a couple of months of animal-spirit-inducing exuberance in soft-survey-hope-data, UMich consumer sentiment printed a disappointing 95.7 in Feb (versus 98.0 exp and down from 98.5 in Jan). The biggest driver was a notable drop in 'hope' as Democrats Expectations plunged near record lows.
S&P futures rose further into record territory, European shares rose to within striking distance of their highest levels in more than a year while bonds fell and the dollar rose as investors cheered a surge in Chinese trade data amid hopes of "phenomenal" tax cuts by Donald Trump, all of which have rekindled the Trumpflation trade.
It is a relatively light week in the US, with mainly trade balance, JOLTS and consumer credit data out. The key economic release this week is University of Michigan consumer sentiment on Friday. In addition, there are a few scheduled speaking engagements from Fed officials this week. 86 S&P 500 companies reporting, representing 11% of the index market cap
In a relatively quiet session, which may see US traders sleep in a bit after last night's Superbowl thriller, European and Asian shares rose ahead of Mario Draghi’s testimony at the European Parliament, while US equity futures were fractionally higher (up 0.1% to 2,293) after stocks jumped the most in a week, as traders assessed the trajectory for interest rates while scrutinizing every new Trump tweet.