US indices

U.S. Indices Quiet Ahead Of FOMC Minutes

Posted Wednesday, February 20, 2019 by
Shain Vernier • 1 min read

In a similar vein as Tuesday, it has been a muted Wall Street open. The leading indices are near flat, with the DJIA (+20), S&P 500 SPX (+0.5), and NASDAQ (+12) all experiencing limited participation. At least for the early going, traders are proceeding with caution ahead of this afternoon’s FOMC Minutes release.

Aside from the FED dialogue scheduled for later today, this morning brought the release of several secondary economic metrics. Here is a quick look at the data:

Event                                                              Actual        Previous

MBA Mortgage Applications (Feb. 15)        3.6%            -3.7%

Redbook Index (MoM, Feb. 8)                     -1.5%           -1.8%

Redbook Index (YoY, Feb. 8)                        5.4%             4.6%

This group of numbers is positive, with the highlight being a 7.3% increase in MBA Mortgage Applications. Yesterday’s NAHB Index also suggested that the coming U.S. home selling season may not be as bad as once expected. It appears that the dovish tone out of the FED has injected some positivity into the real estate sector.

A Quiet Open Ahead Of Today’s FOMC Minutes

March E-mini DOW futures have put on a show over the past two months. Prices have consistently driven north, sustaining trade above 25000.

March E-mini DOW Futures (YM), Daily Chart
March E-mini DOW Futures (YM), Daily Chart

Here are the key levels to watch in this market for the near future:

  • Resistance(1): December High, 26110
  • Support(1): Bollinger MP, 25095
  • Support(2): Daily SMA, 24858

Overview: Tuesday was an extremely tight session for U.S. stocks. Today’s early action has been much the same. However, expect price action to pick up following the FOMC Minutes release at 2:00 PM EST. The market is expecting a dovish FED ― if the minutes confirm this bias, the March E-mini DOW is likely to put in a test of December’s High (26110) by the closing bell.

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