Daily Market Color

Markets Struggle for Direction in Quiet, Post-Turkey Trading Day

As one might expect, US market activity was extremely quiet the day after Thanksgiving.  Technically both equity and fixed income markets are open for a half day, but there are no economic releases or Fed speakers, so volumes are light.  Equities have barely moved from Wednesday’s close, while Treasuries and swaps caught a slight bid off the back of an overnight rout in Chinese stocks.  The Shanghai benchmark composite fell 5.5%, bringing back memories of the freefall in Chinese stocks in August of this year.  The catalyst in today’s selling was the release of Chinese industrial profits, which fell 4.6% in the past 12 months, followed by news that regulators were investigating some of the country’s largest securities firms.  Other economic developments abroad included a report that showed Euro-area confidence at a 4-year high and Japan’s unemployment at a 20-year low.

Next week’s economic calendar is robust, headlined by the European Central Bank’s last meeting of the year and Friday’s release of the US November payrolls report.  The ECB is expected to unveil an extension of its quantitative easing program and another cut to the deposit rate.  Fed Chair Yellen is also slated to speak on Wednesday and Thursday.

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