Stocks Rise as Investors Eye the Fed

First Look

Stocks are higher in the pre-market Wednesday. Minutes from the Federal Reserve’s July meeting will be released at 2:00 p.m. ET today. Investors will be watching for signals that the decision to cut rates last month was part of a series of cuts. Traders are likely to be more interested in Friday’s press conference, where Jerome Powell will give an update on the central bank’s monetary policy. Analysts are expecting another interest rate cut next month. Futures markets are expecting two or three cuts by year-end. President Trump said he sees no signs of a possible recession but proposed a payroll tax cut or capital-gains tax break as possibilities to help prevent a recession, even as he continues to push the Federal Reserve for lower interest rates. The Nasdaq is up 0.73%, the S&P 500 is up 0.67%, the Dow Jones is up 0.61%.

Today's market outlook is Neutral

Wisdom begins in wonder.
Socrates

Stocks on the Move

Target Corporation (TGT), Lowe’s Companies, Inc. (LOW) and Alliance Data Systems Corporation (ADS) are moving higher this morning, while DISCOVERY COMMUNICATIONS INC. Common Stock (DISCA), Jack Henry & Associates, Inc. (JKHY) and Mylan NV (MYL) are headed lower. Public Storage (PSA), Mohawk Industries, Inc. (MHK) and Life Storage Inc (LSI) were upgraded by analysts this morning, while Preferred Bank (PFBC), Hawaiian Holdings, Inc. (HA) and Jazz Pharmaceuticals PLC (JAZZ) were downgraded.

International Markets

Stocks in Asia are mixed. The Hang Seng is up 0.19%, the Shanghai SE Composite Index is up 0.01%, the Nikkei 225 is down -0.28% the Mumbai Sensex is down -0.72% and the Australia ASX All Ordinaries is down -0.83%. In Europe stocks are up. The CAC 40 is up 1.55%, the Euro Stoxx 50 is up 1.27%, the DAX is up 1.17% and the FTSE 100 is up 1.06%.

Futures and Currencies

Energy futures are up today. The price for West Texas Intermediate crude oil is up 0.75 at 56.88 per barrel. Brent crude is up 1.04 at 61.07 per barrel. Natural Gas is up 0.01 at 2.23. Precious metals are down this morning. Gold is down -5.8 at 1509.9 per ounce. Platinum is down -1.28 at 848.28 while silver is down -0.1 at 17.05. The dollar is mixed compared to the major currencies today. The greenback is down against the euro, up against the Yen and up against the Pound.

Put/Call Ratio

Yesterday, 845,798 call contracts traded on the Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE) compared to 587,627 put contracts. The single-session put/call was 0.69 while the 20-day moving average is now at 0.72.

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Today's Economic Calendar

What's Happening Period Release Time
MBA Mortgage Applications Index 08/17 07:00
Existing Home Sales Jul 10:00
EIA Crude Oil Inventories 08/17 10:30
FOMC Minutes Jul 14:00

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