Traders Market Weekly: Jobs and a Data Dependent Fed

July 30 – August 5, 2023

FEAR NOT Brave Investors

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Data Dependent

The Week That Was – What Lies Ahead?


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Markets for the most part followed the recent pattern, higher stock prices, the DAX hitting an all-time high a standout. Higher yields in the front saw the 2s10s spread expand by eight basis points to -93 bps. In currencies we saw a rebound in the dollar and weakening of the yen with the BoJ tinkering with the yield curve control (YCC). Oil continued its march higher after breaking up and in commodities orange juice continued its march higher also. While the Fed and ECB were as expected what we got out of both of them was we have live decisions, that is they are data dependent.

Federal Reserve Chair Powell was forthright that the FOMC decision making will be largely data dependent for the next decision on September 20th. This week a strong than expected 2.4% increase in Q2 GDP, up from 2.0% in Q1. The June Personal Income and Spending Report, which showed solid spending and ongoing disinflation.

Right on cue this week the top shelf readings comes with the health of the US labor market. This week we had another low level of weekly initially jobless claims. Key will be Friday’s nonfarm payrolls report and wages for the month of July. Eyes will be on trend wage growth at a healthy 0.4% m/m SA nonannualized gain. That is expected to remain above the rate of inflation and drive real wage gains. ISM Manufacturing and Services Indexes will be closely watched also.

The market is pricing in that the U.S. economy will avoid a hard landing, that the Fed is close to done raising interest rates, and that earnings growth will return in the second half of the year. Expectations for a second Fed rate hike at any of the meetings before the end of the year were largely unchanged. According to the CME FedWatch Tool, probability of a second-rate hike at any of the remaining FOMC meetings this year remains under 30%.

This is a FOMO stock market environment as we have touched on regularly with the majority of analysts getting this wrong, many desks caught short and the dribbler groomers of FinTwit or CNBS that have no clue and just become echo chambers trying to cultivate an audience all wrong. The winners have been the pro desks and technical analysts that concentrated and recognized the ‘secutization’ of the magnificent seven and in particular Apple and the AI shift early that lifted NVidia and Microsoft.

The big winner has been the passive investor and middle America that invests in stocks. Those we never hear about, because will by nature they are passive and go about their business. We look at Tesla as it mirrors part of the FOMO crowd and part of the passive crowd, we can see from the chart it ran up ahead of earnings, dropped after it and sideways since. much like the belly of active stocks.

AI the Theme of Big Tech Earnings

This week we had a slew of big earnings, the theme of the techs was AI Alphabet (GOOG) beating and sated the market with its AI messaging. Microsoft (MSFT) disappointing them because they said AI profits not until next year which saw MSFT pullback. We also got beats from Meta Platforms (META) among other techs.

The market continues to see a broadening buying interest, earnings-related gains in blue chip names such as Boeing (BA), McDonald’s (MCD), and Dow Inc. (DOW) featured. The Vanguard Mega Cap Growth ETF (MGK) rose 2.0% while the Invesco S&P 500 Equal Weight ETF (RSP) had a 0.2% gain.

Big Oil Delivers Again, Headlines Mislead

The headlines on the big oil earnings on Friday with ExxonMobil (XOM) & Chevron (CVX) was that the earnings were down around half. Lower earnings have been across the big oil board. ExxonMobil (XOM), Chevron Corp (CVX), Shell (SHEL) and TotalEnergies (TTEF) have reported profit falls of 56%, 48%, 56% and 49%, respectively. No kidding so was the oil prices and natural gas prices down about 75%. For perspective XOM still showed adjusted earnings were $7.88 billion.

What impressed us was the prudence of these companies, their rational moves into carbon capture and energy transition. None of that is in the headlines, one wonders why? Sorry our attempt at humor here.

The S&P 500 communication services sector was the best performer by a wide margin, rising 6.9%, boosted by Meta Platforms and Alphabet. Materials (+1.8%) and energy (+1.7%) sectors stood out also. Weakness came from utilities (-2.1%) and real estate (-1.8%).

Of note in line with inflation and the need for worketrs to catch up and the the flow on from the regional bank collapse two events stood out.

  • The International Brotherhood of Teamsters and UPS (UPS) announced that they have reached a five year tentative collective bargaining agreement.
  • Banc of California (BANC) is in advanced discussions to buy PacWest (PACW), according to The Wall Street Journal.

Expect more of the same.

U.S. Treasuries ended the week higher note, pressuring yields from their highest levels in three weeks influenced by the effects of decisions by the Fed, ECB and the Bank of Japan’s relaxation of its yield curve control. The market received a sizable batch of data that reminded about stubborn but improving inflation with US core PCE and Germany in recession. The main driver of inflation in the cycle has been energy prices, crude oil settled at its best level since late April. The 2s10s spread expanded by eight basis points to -93 bps. Ahead we have the RBA and BoC with on US credit conditions.

The strong data and inflation falling is buoying the view that the economy will avoid a hard landing and that the Fed is close to being done raising interest rates. Treasury yields this week, yet the bond market is still respecting a multi-month trading ranging.

Risks Being Ignored or Opportunity Being Repriced?

Soft landing theories were supported this week by weekly initial jobless claims came in low again which was good news regarding the state of the labor market.

With the swings of psychology and dominance of unemotional algorithm models dominating markets more than ever it is critical to stay unemotional and devoid of bias where best you can. For the next six months, we stick to our technical outlook via KnovaWave, watch the curve and EURUSD and USDJPY.

A reminder in these markets don’t get married to a view, leave biased partisan opinions at the door and find a leader. Right now, NVDA and TSLA continue to give us give good insights into crowd behavior. Note the divergence and convergence with it and other instruments. Be proactive.

These markets are constantly evolving, the important things is why we are here and it isn’t a surprise.

Where is the fear?

We got some movement these past weeks out of the tight range in markets but as we can see from the VIX chart it quickly reverted back after the initial breaks. We are aware of built-up energy ahead of key central bank decisions and potential fundamentals to set-up rate hikes or not. There is discontent globally with central banks and politician. The latest was the ushering in a new Governor at the Reserve Bank of Australia.

With optionality dominating markets along with quant funds, algorithms, systematic trading and automated trading volatility has collapsed as has been focused on at KnovaWave. The S&P 500 moved less than 1% in either direction for 36 of the 46 sessions heading into June, according to Dow Jones Market Data, the quietest 46-day stretch since December 2021. This was all in a period of a regional bank crisis and debt ceiling crisis. These systems have no emotion and trade accordingly. The weeks since then continued the pattern for the most part.

Driving quant funds is a self-reinforcing dynamic, when market volatility drops, they add which causes those funds that have paid higher volatility to cover and hence we get the churn. At the end of March, quant-focused hedge funds held about $1.13 trillion in assets, according to research firm HFR, hovering just below last year’s record high. That represents about 29% of all hedge-fund assets.

To break out of this requires a continuing break in a major down, or up move to ignite delta chasing or covering.

So-called vol-control and risk-parity funds, which tend to automatically load up on riskier assets during calmer periods, ramped up equity exposure, according to the Deutsche Bank data, available through May 18. Other quants, such as trend-following CTAs, or commodity trading advisers, have similarly piled in.

The dominance of quants has helped explain previous periods of calm trading, including long stretches in 2017 and 2018. Those periods were punctured by rapid selloffs, including the 2018 selloff dubbed “Volmageddon” when the dynamics exerting calm on the market suddenly went away. Some warn a repeat could be ahead.

Caitlin McCabe WSJ

Cboe Daily Market Statistics

Cboe Daily Market Statistics

Talking about manic behavior it is not hard to argue the punter is overwhelming and influencing markets like no other time, well until the next time. Swirling greed and know it all came home to roost. FOMO (fear of missing out) and TINA (there is no alternative) ended how they always do.

When the VIX is highly reactive, VIX related products can serve as potentially effective hedging tools, when the VIX is not very reactive, traditional hedging techniques may be a better choice.

The VOLX`s underlying instrument is the Mini VIX™ Future. The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX) is an up-to-the-minute market estimate of expected volatility. The VIX is calculated using a formula to derive expected volatility by averaging the weighted prices of out-of-the-money puts and calls (options) on the S&P 500.

Worth repeating again in the low VIX environment.

Well, 2008 redux didn’t happen in the last few months, so the Fed moves have worked for now, much to Xi and Putin’s chagrin.

The doomsayers may be right, but we are seeing constant surprises to that theory. For example, early signs that the US housing market slump is finding a base are emerging, pending home sales having risen for a third month and to a 6-month high. we will keep an eye on consumer sentiment and business activity. We are far from being out of the woods, remember the market is not the economy. Saying that we got quite the distorted job picture per our main job stories which we reprise below. Are we simply taking some air out or is the beginning of the great meltdown?

What we continue to notice is how this market is still being treated by ‘experts’ as those in the past, hence the volatility and extreme in bulls/bears. Understanding crowd behavior is essential in these markets. The moves have caught analysts and strategists by surprise with the uber bear running amok in the past few weeks. Typical thinking is this from Morgan Stanley strategists a month ago; “Given the events of the past few weeks, we think … equity markets are at greater risk of pricing in much lower estimates”, noting that earnings estimates were 15-20% too high even “before the recent banking events.”

What non-traders are failing to grasp is this market with so many variables is not trading as they expect and they are constantly wrong. S&P 500 earnings for the first quarter are estimated to have fallen 5% from 2022, followed by an expected 3.9% drop in the second quarter, Refinitiv data shows. During recessions, however, earnings tumble at a 24% annual rate on average, according to Ned Davis Research. However how important is that in such a chaotic market? There is the answer structure your thinking around game theory or even chaos theory.

Week Ahead: Jobs, RBA and BOE

Eyes will be on top macroeconomic reports that will emphasize the health of the US and global economies. Eyes and ears will be on central bankers given the market turmoil and the hiking of rates.

It will be a busy week for earnings from Apple (AAPL), Amazon (AMZN), Advanced Micro Devices (AMD), Pfizer (PFE), Starbucks (SBUX), Qualcomm (QCOM), Uber (UBER), Pinterest (PINS), Moderna (MRNA), Merck (MRK), CVS Healthcare (CVS), Caterpillar (CAT), Airbnb (ABNB), Marriott International (MAR), and Hyatt Hotels (H). Additionally updates from energy giants BP (BP), Marathon Petroleum (MPC), Diamondback Energy (FANG), Dominion Energy (D), Enbridge (ENB) and Transocean (RIG).

How Hot is the American Economy?

More Macro and Micro data points, some highlights include

  • Monday: July Chicago PMI
  • Tuesday: Final July S&P Global U.S. Manufacturing PMI; June Construction Spending, July ISM Manufacturing Index, and June job openings
  • Wednesday: Weekly MBA Mortgage, July ADP Employment Change, Weekly oil inventories
  • Thursday: Weekly Initial and Continuing jobless claims, Preliminary Q2 Productivity, S&P Global US Services PMI; June Factory Orders, July ISM Non-Manufacturing Index and Weekly natural gas inventories.
  • Friday: July Nonfarm Payrolls, Unemployment Rate, Average Hourly Earnings (prior 0.4%), and Average Workweek

How is the Consumer Hanging?

The US relies on services for up to 90% of GDP. it relies on the consumer who is being battered by the California and New York regional bank debacle. On top of that is cumbersome if not ignorant politicians, with no clear regard for main street the evidence suggests in their behavior. Key retailers all gave a cautionary note with tightened household budgets continue to hit demand for big-ticket items and curb discretionary spending.

We get more data to help us gage the consumer: Weekly MBA Mortgage, Weekly Initial and Continuing jobless claims.  We also get July ADP Employment Change, S&P Global US Services PMI July ISM Non-Manufacturing Index and Average Hourly Earnings 

Earnings season continues with earnings from Apple (AAPL), Amazon (AMZN), Advanced Micro Devices (AMD), Starbucks (SBUX), Uber (UBER), Pinterest (PINS), Airbnb (ABNB), Marriott International (MAR), and Hyatt Hotels (H).

Click here to see the Full Week Ahead List Below

Some things never change, when you think Greed is Good

So how Screwed are We?

  • The banking system is on much greater Credit risk than mortgage risks were offloaded during the 2008 mortgage finance Bubble. At $25.6 TN, Banking System Assets ended 2022 almost double the 2007 level.
  • Financial Sector debt growth jumped to a 9.66% rate last year, the strongest since 2007’s 13.50% Z.1 data showed. Now we are looking at this given the quick demise of regional banks and the concerns of the commercial structure. Why? we simple note a jump in Financial Sector borrowings signals a surge in risk intermediation. Is this fateful late-cycle intermediation gong to haunt the financial sector and economy when the Bubble bursts.
  • If it doesn’t burst well, we circle back to the popular view that Financial Sector debt included in analysis would be “double counting” borrowings already included elsewhere (i.e. mortgage and business). The swift end to backs, the shocking management out there and geopolitical cold war out there has us ready to expect the unexpected and aware of moves to mitigate by Central banks as we saw a few weeks ago.
  • GSE Assets expanded an unprecedented $2.094 TN, or 29.4%, over the past three years to a record $9.224 TN. FHLB Assets surged $524 billion, or 72%, in 2022, with indications for Q1 growth upwards of (yes) $400 billion.
  • FHLB plays a pivotal role, last year prolonging the lending boom and last month stabilizing bank liquidity.

The Credit cycle downturn is coming to the surface.

We have the reflective destabilizing Monetary Disorder. Take a peek at China and the markets collective cognitive dissonance to the property market there, the shadow banking as just one example. Have a look around the world. The hope is the collective mass continues to evolve and survive, while each time the destruction is evident in massive disproportion shifts of wealth and attempts of mind, if not physical control of the masses. Dial that back and try and get in the minds of those trying to right the ship and the market components that matter, not what the dribblers think matter.

Here’s a thought, knowing about the power of cognitive dissonance does not necessarily protect you from its effects. Traders are only too aware of this eureka moment when you grasp it. Why some of the best trades you ever do, are the ones you don’t. In option parlance, being delta neutral sometimes is the best trade.

Key this coming week will be the commencement of the next round of such indicators that will test whether these gains were one-offs or something that is sustainable. The key will be the extent to which downside risks to the US economy have been reduced enough to influence global central banks, and how markets react.

The Fed’s aggressive tightening cycle has had little affect on loose financial conditions.

Where to from here? It’s also okay to acknowledge and process any difficult emotions or experiences that you may have had during the past year. Looking back on the past year with perspective can help you to gain a greater understanding of what you have been through and how you have coped. I hope that you are able to find ways to manage any challenges that come your way and that you continue to feel fine moving forward. Embrace the chaos that is headed your way in 2023!

China; Behind the Iron Curtain

A big shift in 2022, China’s population is now falling and below that of India. China’s population fell for the first time since 1961 as births have steadily fallen in recent years despite the removal of the “one child policy”. The stalling working age population and its likely decline ahead means that potential growth in China is down from around 10% or so in the 2000s to around 4-5% now.

Growth in China’s metric of system Credit growth, Aggregate Financing, dropped to $175 billion, down significantly from March’s $773 billion and only 61% of estimates. It was also the weakest monthly growth since last October.

“China is warning domestic brokerages not to spread information that compromises national security, reinforcing a campaign that has roiled consulting firms and providers of financial data.”

  • July 27 – Bloomberg (Tom Hancock): “China’s debt-to-GDP ratio rose to a record in the second quarter, although consumers and businesses are borrowing at a slow pace, reflecting low confidence… Total debt — combining the household, corporate and government sectors — climbed to 281.5% of gross domestic product in the second quarter… That was up from 279.7% in the first quarter.”
  • July 27 – Bloomberg: “China’s economic recovery continued to lose momentum in July, high frequency indicators show, with consumers pulling back on spending and the property market showing no signs of a rebound. Housing sales in the country’s biggest cities continued to fall, car sales contracted and business sentiment, especially among smaller firms, weakened, the data showed. Heat waves and deadly floods hitting various parts of the nation pose another threat to growth, as they could strain power supply and disrupt logistics and production.”
  • July 26 – Wall Street Journal (Brian Spegele): “More than one in five young people in China are jobless. The government casts much of the blame on the job seekers themselves, insisting that their expectations have gotten too high. Young people need to stiffen their spines and embrace hardship, says leader Xi Jinping, who labored in the countryside in China’s Cultural Revolution. If they can’t find jobs they want, they should work on factory lines or engage in poverty relief in rural China. The government’s guidance is ringing hollow with many young people. Growing up in a period of rising prosperity, they were told that China was strong, the West was declining and endless opportunities awaited them. Now, with the urban youth unemployment rate hitting a record of 21.3% in June, their employment frustrations are posing a new challenge to Xi and his vision for a more powerful China. For the estimated 11.6 million college graduates in 2023, having heeded calls by the state to study hard, the prospect of resorting to the physical labor that many of their parents performed is distinctly unappealing.”

The Market Tripod of Destruction.

  • Firstly, financial asset overvaluation has swung way past any sound underlying economic wealth structure.
  • Secondly over-leverage in crowded bets.
  • Thirdly we have greed enthused, as always in these cycles, risk engineering, transfer and management that ignores or understands bifurcation and contagion outcomes.

Leverage has become toxic, a development that if not addressed will have deep and with far-reaching sequels. It’s not too farfetched to suggest that the markets are on the verge of a rupture that would be difficult to contain. Should the crisis of confidence dynamics that hit Britain feed into other markets a powerful global contagion could be unleashed. The markets are dislocated, and financial stability is at risk. A sobering thought is the UK is just the initial first world pension system in this cycle facing the harsh reality of a steep devaluation of assets and the prospect of widespread insolvencies and debilitating negative sentiment.

Inflation Matters

Inflation with Henry Kaufman

Kaufman is the legendary chief economist and head of bond market research at Salomon Brothers is someone who knows Inflation.  Henry Kaufman in an interview with Bloomberg’s Erik Schatzker Jan 14, 2022:

 “I don’t think this Federal Reserve and this leadership has the stamina to act decisively. They’ll act incrementally. In order to turn the market around to a more non-inflationary attitude, you have to shock the market. You can’t raise interest rates bit-by-bit.”

“The longer the Fed takes to tackle a high rate of inflation, the more inflationary psychology is embedded in the private sector — and the more it will have to shock the system.”

“‘It’s dangerous to use the word transitory,’ Kaufman said. ‘The minute you say transitory, it means you’re willing to tolerate some inflation.’ That, he said, undermines the Fed’s role of maintaining economic and financial stability to achieve ‘reasonable non-inflationary growth.’”

Independence – Never Take It for Granted Traders

“In aggregate, the market goes from order to disorder, and on that journey little pockets of order can form, including in commodities, bonds, stocks, currencies that circle back and reorder disorder. Then there is us the market player that reflects through order and disorder in an ever-evolving loop towards independence. It all starts with gravity and ends with equilibrium and back we go.” KnovaWave “The rules of market flux”

The Fed has kicked off its first real tightening campaign since 1994, with securities markets already at the brink of illiquidity and dislocation. Markets could soon be screaming for assurances of the Fed’s “buyer of last resort” liquidity backstop, while the Fed is prepared to begin withdrawing liquidity by selling Treasuries and MBS.

Another important aspect is the Fed doesn’t Control corporate pricing or wage decisions. Let us be clear geopolitical, climate change developments and what an out of depth, politically motivated administration are outside the Fed’s sphere of influence. There has been over $5.1 Trillion new “money” in 126 weeks, it’s a reasonable conclusion the Fed has lost control of Inflation.

We need to grasp all the risks to be wary off and received plenty of flak from it. We always talk here about expect the unexpected and now that is front and center, gage the market’s reaction, the market is always right and that’s why we focused on the crowd psychology aspect over the past few weeks.

“We have a market trying to interpret the Fed who is trying to find out how they can interpret their long-only portfolio at a risk parity where rates cannot rise.”

– MoneyNeverSleeps

This move has crept up on many, to the extent the S&P 500’s is over the traditional measurement of a new bull market typically measured as a 20% gain from a significant low. The index above 4292.438 got that 20% move. That ended the longest bear market since 1948. The DAX and CAC40 have seen all-time highs recently also.

Our weekly reminder for risk. The downside is clear with the absence of moral hazard from repeated Federal Reserve market bailouts in an environment of some would say obscene liquidity pumps. Pure greed is the other part, not wanting to miss out on fees. The obvious question is, how deeply ingrained is this attitude through the markets? How do we ween the markets off this continuous dip feed? At this point the Central Banks have kicked that answer down the road.

Part A – Stock Markets

Weekly Highlights – USA


  • S&P500 gained 1.0% (up 19.3% y-t-d),
  • Dow added 0.7% (up 7.0%)
  • S&P 400 Midcaps increased 0.4% (up 11.8%),
  • Small cap Russell 2000 added 1.1% (up 12.5%)
  • Nasdaq100 advanced 2.1% (up 44.0%)
Major US Stock Indices

YTD Report Card for the S&P Sectors

Many Have Been Long Energy, Short Tech – July 21 23 YTD shows that is one of the worse positions in stocks.


  • Utilities dropped 2.2% (down 6.1%).
  • Banks rose 1.5% (down 11.7%),
  • Broker/Dealers were little changed (up 14.2%).
  • Transports jumped 2.9% (up 24.7%).
  • Semiconductors surged 4.1% (up 52.1%).
  • Biotechs declined 1.3% (up 1.1%).
  • With bullion slipping $3, the HUI gold equities index dropped 2.7% (up 3.3%).

Biggest SPX Stock Winners and Losers Last Week

Major US Indices

When Markets Get Short Behind the Curve

Worth reading again what fueled the recent rally…

We analyzed the short component of this year’s rally back in May and it an important component of the market’s structure. Global stocks have continued to climb the wall of worry in 2023, with what has become a series of saves from the brink of economic disaster in a political episode worthy of the best Monty Python minds. The end result has left many investors over insured at times as we have been focusing on with option saturation, short bets and long only investors out of the market. The latter in a rising market essentially makes them short.

This background is not new we have seen it many times over the last 20 to 30 years. The difference here is the sheer weight of money in the system and the introduction of shorter dated options and so many playing it.

Speculators and hedge funds had put on the largest short positions in the S&P 500 since 2007 according to Bespoke Investment Group using CFTC data measured as a percentage of open futures-market interest.

At the same time, they have bet long on the Nasdaq-100, with net bullish plays nearing the highest levels since late last year, remember that. Markets go where the most pain is. The move, in a world where averaging your position is seen as trading has fueled larger positions. Anyone understand the martingale principle?

Fed Assets expanded $364 billion over three weeks in March in banking crisis liquidity operations (the market has a short memory that was only 8 weeks ago and helped create bigger shorts out there). Assets remain about $45 billion above the March 1st level. FHLB assets expanded an unprecedented $317 billion during Q1 ($802bn over 4 quarters). Indicative of the liquidity surge, money market fund assets inflated $384 billion in the five weeks beginning March 8th. In affect we got a massive boost a surge in financial sector Credit with those FHLB money market borrowings to finance its massive banking liquidity support operations.

That’s all well and good the trouble it is up, and substantially and the cost of carry is around 6-12% not 0-2% from last year. Trading from the short side is about timing, recognition and as they say strike like a cobra. The demise of the Californian and New York Regional Banks was a prime example, they were on the radar and once the cracks appeared, go hard, go fast.

Where are the Shorts Trapped at? (Becomes the Longs After Wave C’s or 3’s)

There is two ways of looking at this the bears and the dribblers out there argue it all has to come down. The rationale being the S&P 500 was up 12% this year, however it would be negative without the contribution of seven big tech companies. The argument is should any of those plunges then we are back to bringing it all down. The problem is it has gone up, we look at the AAPL and NVDA for just two names that dominate structure.

Global Stock Market Highlights

Highlights – Europe Stocks


  • U.K.’s FTSE equities index added 0.4% (up 3.3% y-t-d).
  • France’s CAC40 increased 0.6% (up 15.5%).
  • German DAX equities index jumped 1.8% (up 18.3%).
  • Spain’s IBEX 35 equities index rose 1.2% (up 17.7%).
  • Italy’s FTSE MIB index rose 2.2% (up 24.4%).

Germany’s benchmark Blue Chip DAX 30 index (Deutscher Aktienindex) expanded to 40 companies on 20 September 2021 adding 10 new members to the German stock index from the MDAX which will be reduced from 60 to 50 members.

Highlights – Asia Stocks


  • Japan’s Nikkei Equities Index gained 1.4% (up 25.5% y-t-d)
  • South Korea’s Kospi index was little changed (up 16.6%).
  • India’s Sensex equities index declined 0.8% (up 8.7%).
  • China’s Shanghai Exchange Index rallied 3.4% (up 6.0%).

HighlightsAustralian Stocks

  • Australia’s S&P/ASX 200: -0.7% to 7403.6 Friday (+1.2% for the week)
  • Singapore September iron ore fell 2.9% to $106.50, reversing gains from earlier this week triggered by hopes of stimulus in China.
  • Fortescue Metals fell 5.4% to $21.68 a day after releasing a quarterly production update. Rio Tinto fell 1% to $116.62 and BHP fell 0.8% to $45.80.

Highlights – Emerging Markets Stocks


  • Brazil’s Bovespa index was unchanged (up 9.5%),
  • Mexico’s Bolsa index jumped 2.3% (up 13.4%).
  • Turkey’s Borsa Istanbul National 100 index surged 5.7% (up 28.3%).
  • Russia’s MICEX equities index rose 3.9% (up 39.7%).

Technical Analysis

S&P 500

Daily: The daily SPX closed above the previous roof (Key Spits) which were also at 7/8 and clustered around the 50% & August breakdown. With energy and with a very low VIX it has mirrored the get cloud to get through overhead. The bullish take is that we completed the correction off last year’s high at the low and this is a larger 1-2 to go higher with support at the previous resistance and cloud. The bearish outlook is this move becomes a rising wedge and we are working out the uber bears before new lows.

When we talk about crowd psychology this is a great example. The market after spitting the 4100 and 38.2% retracement broke to capture the Tenkan. This underscores the power from the SPX spat of June & October lows with impulse through the tenkan and Kijun energized by the daily cloud twist that fueled this rally. The completive wave came off extreme fear and bear that ended with relief. Now we have sated much of the greed phase and short fear phase. We have completed that cycle and from here we measure the alternatives.

Daily S&P 500 3 waves

It is worth looking back at the completive highs (all-time highs) and how we played out so far. Tracing back from highs the fuel from the top of the channel after completing 3 waves off ATH, accelerated after broke the Tenkan through to the 4600 OI where it reversed with impulse back to Tenkan. Bulls, this is likely a (ii) of a 5. Bears this is 1-2 of (i) completive V of degree. We watch if this low was a (iii), (a) or C. We have to respect the number of alternatives of degree of 5. With such trends keep it simple. From no fear to panic is the driving element.

On the downside the Kijun and those June lows now critical and is our trading Bear/Bull pivot in a high vol scenario. Watch each measured 3 wave move on the 240 & Murrey Math highlighted in the podcast. The prices pulled through the downward cloud pulled by the twist ‘helium contusion’ on the completive. For fractal purposes, SPX completed 5 waves up where it reversed with impulse. Energy fueled from the power impulse down from +1/8 ATH spit of a spit fail. On the way down (just like up) it accelerated after it broke the Tenkan through the rejected Kijun and then through the median after tapping 8/8.

Weekly: The SPX has a clear channel off the lows on the weekly timeframe off the sphere of influence and has ground higher since it closed over the cloud above the Tenkan. Key support is the Tenkan, channel and +1/8. Power initially came from launching out of the sphere of influence as one would expect in a 3 or C. We had the Kijun spit also. Above is the channel and +3/8.

In the bigger picture we are playing out S&P 500 energy after it held the sphere of influence from Nov 2020 reversed higher after spitting the 38% and key lows. At the time we opined “We do have a weekly cloud twist; however, the energy is waning without sharp impulse.” We got the sharp impulse right to weekly Kijun. For major cycles we watch the S&P 500 over 4,231, the 50% retracement of losses from the Jan. 3 & June 16 close. Since 1950 there has never been a bear market rally that exceeded the 50% retracement then gone on to make new cycle lows. Is this time different, as we tested and spat those June lows?

On the way up each new high evolved after testing Tenkan key support on the way and we are now getting a retest as resistance. We reiterate this needs to be recovered for a resumption of the uptrend meanwhile the bear market plays out. Watch Tenkan this week and watch for Kijun reaction. Extensions are difficult to time, keep it simple.

S&P500 Weekly Outlook

THE KEY: Key for the impulse higher was the spit or retest of MM 8/8 and Tenkan San, which held with the previous highs and Tenkan.  To repeat “We look for 3 waves down and reactions to keep it simple with the alternatives in the daily.”  Keep an eye on the put/call ratio with recognition to the sheer size of contracts AND keep in mind the stimulus distortion. The spit per channel fractal and Adams rule launched back over the cloud where we were encased AND we are back testing it. Watch if a spit or clear break support as Chikou rebalances

A reminder that Apple Inc $AAPL, Microsoft Corp $MSFT, Inc $AMZN, Facebook Inc $FB, and Google-parent Alphabet Inc $GOOGL make up approximately 23% of the total weight of the S&P 500. With that comes gyrations that are an outsized impact on broader markets


The down move saw Nasdaq spit the weekly Kijun and a 1-2 off tenkan we spat MM 5/8 after holding the key 61.8% Fib. We watch the Tenkan & Kijun confluence above, the breakup level and between the 38/50 Fibs. The Nasdaq is well behind the S&P pace with the weekly cloud and 50wma well above. Support the 61.8% retest.

Recall ATH was after it broke and held the weekly Tenkan to see a spit of a spit fail which is completive of 5 of some degree with Chikou rebalancing. Watch Chikou for divergence for continuation or failure. Divergence with Russell also a clue.

NASDAQ Record Highs to 61.8% of impulsive

Dow Jones

The Dow led the indices and closed above the weekly Tenkan after closing and testing last week. Prior test after the reaction off the June lows and sphere of influence. Support is the channel and Fibs. Tenkan and Kijun after the reaction empowered. Support is the channel and Fibs.

Russell 2000

The small cap Russell RUT bounced in double bottom off 1600 5/8 confluence which was the Nov 2020 breakup. Russell 2000 Resistance Tenkan and Kijun, note previous rejections. This is the index showing more of the fast money crowd and is trading like it. Needs to get traction in here for bulls. 7/8 & 8/8 support collapsed on the way down and is now major resistance.

Russell Index Negative Divergence to NASDAQ


NVidia $NVDA

Nvidia NVDA stock chart

NVidia surged 179.3% in H1 2023. It has been relentless since earnings and is the focus of the AI craze. With all manic moves beware of the pullbacks and topping potential. That said the extensions have played out and so far to +2/8 on the weekly. This was a classic set up as we can see. It has a textbook of KnovaWave methodology and rules from the 61.8% break and reverse through the sphere. NVDA accelerated after it broke the double top spheres at 5/8 giving is a near 4/8 move. A reminder that the dominance was in.

NVDA took off after the breakup retest from May 2021. NVidia is a clear leader of SOX & SMH look for cues there and ABC failures for changes. NVDA never looked back after the Key Break (mauve) and Tenkan to a flat cloud and holding support the recent low at the 61.8% extension.

Apple $AAPL

Apple AAPL Stock Chart

Apple has consistently driven upwards after it held the sphere of influence after retesting 6/8 & break up. Kijun and Tenkan crossing and then the 50wma with the cloud twist have been magnetic. Apple & other mega-cap names dominant the major indices, and a plethora of funds that hold it as a core position. The Vanguard Mega-Cap Growth ETF (MGK) delta is important to watch.

A firm rejection at $175 at +2/8 triggered a waterfall down for Apple last year. We regathered that and more and broke the weekly bull flag higher. On the way up Apple gently motored up to new ATH over the massive $160 then $170 thru to $180 gamma level on the way down these levels became key energy levels all the way to $132. Support held at the May break (just like NVDA) where from there it spat the cloud pulled by a flat Tenkan and Kijun as it rebalanced Chikou. The old channel break and MM +2/8 is now key. Remember the impact $AAPL has, at least short term on all the major indices.


Ark ARKK ETF Stock Chart

The ARK Innovation ETF (ARKK) finally found some support at -1/8, 78% off highs and the 423.6% extension! The ARK Innovation ETF returned 29% for Q1 2023. The fund is filled with growth stocks and was the top-performing U.S. equity fund tracked by Morningstar in 2020, it has not been a pretty slide. For the quarter, Nasdaq Computer Index up 25.7% and the NYSE Arca Technology Index gaining 26.1%. The Nasdaq100 (NDX) jumped 20.5%.

The ARKK ETF trading clinically, tested triangle breakdown and failed off 50 WMA. Some work at support at 61.8% of whole move and then wrecked again. Clear crowd behavior, we saw ATH in NASDAQ & SPX, yet this couldn’t raise a bid – very telling negative divergence. $ARKK rebalanced Chikou at week’s end

ExxonMobil XOM

ExxonMobil Weekly Chart

XOM has completed 5 waves from -3/8 to +3/8 on the weekly. with a double top. Alternatives 5 complete of degree. We are in a 1-2 (A-B depending on degree. Support is the cloud which has held 3 times since the high and the 50WMA resistance the tenkan and Kijun. Pattern wise we are in the bull flag until proven otherwise.

Part B: Bond Markets

Bond Watch


U.S. Treasuries ended the week higher note, pressuring yields from their highest levels in three weeks influenced by the effects of decisions by the Fed, ECB and the Bank of Japan’s relaxation of its yield curve control. The market received a sizable batch of data that reminded about stubborn but improving inflation with US core PCE and Germany in recession.

The main driver of inflation in the cycle has been energy prices, crude oil settled at its best level since late April. The 2s10s spread expanded by eight basis points to -93 bps. Ahead we have the RBA and BoC with on US credit conditions.

Treasury Yield Watch


  • 2-yr: -2 bps to 4.90% (+5 bps for the week)
  • 3-yr: -5 bps to 4.54% (+9 bps for the week)
  • 5-yr: -6 bps to 4.20% (+11 bps for the week)
  • 10-yr: -4 bps to 3.97% (+13 bps for the week)
  • 30-yr: -3 bps to 4.03% (+12 bps for the week)

Higher for longer is a serious threat.

Surging market yields are a serious issue for a banking system loaded with long duration securities portfolios. This may well be a push over the cliff for troubled commercial real estate (CRE). Leveraged lending and leveraged finance gets more costly. Simply there are trillions of floating rate loans among individuals, speculators, businesses, and nations.

  • The iShares Investment Grade Corporate ETF (LQD) declined 1.01% Thursday, the largest loss since May 1st. The 2.40% loss for the week was the largest since February.
  • The iShares High Yield ETF (HYG) declined 0.73% Thursday, also the largest decline since May 1st. The 1.63% loss for the week, the worst weekly performance since early-March.
  • Friday Bloomberg headlines: “HYG ETF Daily Outflows $1.13 Bln, Biggest Move Since March 28th.” and “Two Giant Credit ETFs Hit by $2 Billion Exit on Hawkish Fed Bets.”

Global Yields Spiking Higher

  • UK 10-year yields were up 16 bps Thursday to 5.54%, with two-year yields surging as much as 18 bps to a 15-year high 5.54%. Reminiscent of last fall, UK yields were pulling global yields higher – even before the jolt from the ADP report.
  • Italian 10-year yields surged 21 bps Thursday (4.37%),
  • Greek yields jumped 18 bps (3.97%).
  • Ten-year yields rose 17 bps in Spain (3.70%) and Portugal (3.36%).
  • Canadian 10-year yields surged 30 bps this week to an eight-month high of 3.57%.
  • Australian 10-year yields jumped 23 bps this week to 4.26% – the high since January 2014.
  • New Zealand yields rose 22 bps to 4.85% – the high since July 2011.

For our complete Weekly Fixed Interest Analysis and Outlook visit our Bond Traders Weekly Outlook:

Mortgage Market

  • Freddie Mac 30-year fixed mortgage rates declined eight bps to 6.80% (up 150bps y-o-y).
  • Fifteen-year rates jumped 13 bps to 6.20% (up 162bps).
  • Five-year hybrid ARM rates fell 16 bps to 6.43% (up 214bps).
  • Bankrate’s survey of jumbo mortgage borrowing costs had 30-year fixed rates up 20 bps to 7.38% (up 217bps).
Mortgage News Daily

Global Debt Monitor

Highlights Unprecedented and Ongoing Surge in Global Debt

Last week, the Institute of International Finance (IIF) released their Q1 2023 Global Debt Monitor (GDM), highlighting the unprecedented – and ongoing – surge in global debt.

GDM Highlights:

  • “The global debt stock grew by $8.3 trillion to a near-record $305 trillion in Q123; the combination of high debt levels and rising interest rates has pushed up debt service costs, prompting concerns about leverage in the financial system.”
  • “Total debt of emerging markets hit a fresh record high of over $100 trillion (or 250% of GDP) – up from $75 trillion in 2019.”
  • “At close to $305 trillion, global debt is now $45 trillion higher than its pre-pandemic level and is expected to continue increasing rapidly.”
  • “Rise of private debt markets: Non-bank financial institutions (NBFLs) continue to gain prominence in global credit intermediation. The so-called ‘shadow banks’ now account for more than 14% of financial markets, with the majority of growth stemming from a rapid expansion of U.S. investment and private debt markets.”
  • “The Size of Private Debt Markets Surpassed $2.1 Trillion in 2022, Up From Less Than $0.1 Trillion in 2007.”

From the end of Q3 2019 through Q1 2023, Total Global Debt jumped $52.3 TN, or 20.7%, to $305 TN.

Over this period, “Mature” economy debt expanded 13.4%, while “Emerging” economy debt surged 38.9%. It’s worth nothing that in the “Emerging” category, “Household” debt surged 41.7%, “Non-Financial Corporate” 35.1%, and “Government” 55.7%. Since 2016, total global debt-to-GDP has surged from 210% to 360%. Global financial conditions remain loose. When they inevitably tighten, be prepared for serious dislocation.

Part C: Commodities


July 21, 2023

Key Long Term Commodity Charts


Copper Supply Crunch


China added to its gold reserves for an eighth consecutive month. People’s Bank of China holdings of bullion rose by 680,000 troy ounces last month, according to official data released Friday. That’s equivalent to 23 tons.

Gold in Perspective


For complete Oil and Natural Gas Coverage please visit our dedicated publications ‘Around the Barrel’ and ‘Into the Vortex.’ – Weekly Analysis and Outlook for Energy Traders and Investors


WTI Weekly KnovaWave Shape

Natural Gas

US Natural Gas KnovaWave Weekly Grid
Energy Market Closes

BDI Freight Index

Baltic Dry Index Weekly

For our complete Weekly Commodity Analysis and Outlook visit our Commodity Traders Weekly Outlook:

Charts and commentary via KnovaWave on:

  • Grains: Wheat, Corn, Soybeans
  • Metals: Copper, Aluminum
  • Precious Metals: Gold Silver
  • Lumber
  • Oil and Natural gas are covered separately (see below)

Part D: Forex Markets

John Maynard Keynes, 1920: “There is no subtler, no surer means of overturning the existing basis of society than to debauch the currency. The process engages all the hidden forces of economic law on the side of destruction and does it in a manner which not one man in a million is able to diagnose.”


  • For the week, the U.S. Dollar Index rallied 0.6% to 101.69 (down 1.7% y-t-d). 2022 gains were 8.2%
  • For the week on the upside, the South African rand increased 1.9%, the Mexican peso 1.8%, the Brazilian real 1.1%, the South Korean won 0.5%, and the Japanese yen 0.4%. The Chinese (onshore) renminbi increased 0.55% versus the dollar (down 3.50%).
  • On the downside the Swedish krona declined 1.6%, the Australian dollar 1.2%, the Norwegian krone 1.2%, the euro 1.0%, the Swiss franc 0.5%, the New Zealand dollar 0.2%, the Canadian dollar 0.2% and the Singapore dollar 0.1%.

Weekly Foreign Exchange Price Change

For our complete Forex Weekly Analysis and Outlook visit our Forex Traders Weekly Outlook:

Charts and commentary via KnovaWave on the US Dollar, Euro, Japanese Yen, British Pound, Euro Pound, Swiss Franc, Canadian Dollar, Australian Dollar, New Zealand Dollar, Turkish Lira, Mexican Peso. Currency dynamics are complex. There are myriad facets to analyze and contemplate that influence all markets.



Bitcoin continues to be plaything of levered speculators, this week we saw the markets turn against those short. Where did this come from? Forced coverage from yield curve punts blowing up. Yen shorts and levered “carry trades” at risk.

It had been a churn following the FTX collapse. BTC had been stuck in the sphere of influence in continuation awaiting a catalyst, and it came. Continues to perform technically to perfection. Impulse begets impulse. To understand panic, understand greed. $BTC tested the top of a rising channel after the preceding sharp downturn which was the downside breakout of an earlier bearish flag, after breaking downside a H&S top and then down it went….

Recall Bitcoin exploded higher following it’s correction impulsively upon completing 5 waves up at +2/8. Each Tenkan and Kijun tap saw an explosive kiss of death until we completed 3 waves to around 28,000. From there we have seen extreme volatility.

Bitcoin KnovaWave Weekly Outlook

Looking back Bitcoin put in a high of $63,000 around Coinbase, the largest US crypto exchange successfully went public which signaled profit-taking. The high over $68,000 came after the launch over the Bitcoin ETF. From that high we have 2 main alternatives a V of a 1 of a V. For bears it a completive five with impulse right to the 50wma – an incredible 26% fall in a Friday night session. That’s impulse!

Bitcoin Mania in Perspective


Ethereum Weekly

On the Risk Radar

Fed Warnings on Possible Medium To Long Term Risks

 Geopolitical Tinderbox Radar

Turkey Geopolitical
Turkey Risk Monitor

Economic and Geopolitical Watch


Major US Banks for Q2, 2023

America’s big money center banks kicked of second quarter earnings with a solid start with solid beats by JP Morgan Chase, BlackRock, Wells Fargo, Citigroup and State Street.

Q223 Reports

Akio Morita mistakes

The Week Ahead – Have a Trading Plan

What Macro and Micro Risks and Opportunities Lie Ahead this week

Global Watch

Next Week’s Risk Dashboard via Scotiabank

  • Canadian immigration—Facts Vs. Fiction
  • Downside risk to Canadian jobs?
  • Spin the wheel on US payrolls, wages
  • How tight are US credit conditions becoming?
  • Will the Bank of England downshift?
  • RBA: Hike or Hold?
  • A mixed case for the Bank of Thailand
  • Brazil could be the next LatAm central bank to ease
  • BanRep won’t
  • Global earnings pose elevated market risk
  • Global macro reports

Central Bank Watch

In the week ahead we have five central bank’s monetary policy meetings. Eyes will be on the RBA and BoE given the outsize influence their past decisions have been taken by markets to be indicative of a global central bank bias toward further tightening. Earlier in the week focus will be skewed toward evidence on US credit conditions following recent data. We also have monetary policy decisions from Thailand, Brazil and Colombia.

The Federal Reserve’s Senior Loan Officer Opinion Survey on bank lending practices in July’s quarterly report arrives on Monday. The prior edition showed modest evidence of tightening loan standards.

Eyes and ears will be on central bankers. We have the backdrop of a more hawkish Fed Chair in the face of escalating systemic risk. How will this affect Fed policy given the massive treasury positions out there and the risk of uninsured funds? In this environment we get pivots daily. How much damage is the Federal Reserve willing to do in the guise of controlling inflation?

This Week’s Interest Rate Announcements (Time E.T.)

In the week ahead we get 5 central banks delivering policy decisions.

Monday, July 31, 2023

  • 14:00 Columbia Interest Rate Decision

Tuesday, August 1, 2023

  • 00:30 RBA Interest Rate Decision

Wednesday, August 2, 2023

  • 03:00 Thailand Interest Rate Decision
  • 17:00 Brazil Interest Rate Decision

Thursday, August 3, 2023

  • 07:00 BoE Interest Rate Decision

Friday, August 4, 2023

  • 17:00 Chile Interest Rate Decision

For our complete Central Bank Analysis and Outlook Visit our Central Bank Watch:

U.S. Economic Data Watch

US Data Focus

  • Monday: July Chicago PMI (prior 41.5) at 9:45 ET
  • Tuesday: Final July S&P Global U.S. Manufacturing PMI (prior 46.3) at 9:45 ET; June Construction Spending (prior 0.9%), July ISM Manufacturing Index (prior 46.0%), and June job openings (prior 9.824 mln) at 10:00 ET
  • Wednesday: Weekly MBA Mortgage Index (prior -1.8%) at 7:00 ET; July ADP Employment Change (prior 497,000) at 8:15 ET; and weekly crude oil inventories (prior -600,000) at 10:30 ET
  • Thursday: Preliminary Q2 Productivity (prior -2.1%), preliminary Q2 Unit Labor Costs (prior 4.2%), weekly Initial Claims (prior 221,000), and Continuing Claims (prior 1.690 mln) at 8:30 ET; final S&P Global US Services PMI (prior 54.4) at 9:45 ET; June Factory Orders (prior 0.3%) and July ISM Non-Manufacturing Index (prior 53.9%) at 10:00 ET; and weekly natural gas inventories (prior +16 bcf) at 10:30 ET
  • Friday: July Nonfarm Payrolls (prior 209,000), Nonfarm Private Payrolls (prior 149,000), Unemployment Rate (prior 3.6%), Average Hourly Earnings (prior 0.4%), and Average Workweek (prior 34.4) at 8:30 ET

US Stocks Watch Earnings and Event Watch

Earnings Highlights This Week:

  • Monday includes Diamondback Energy (FANG), SoFi Technologies (SOFI), Transocean (RIG), ON Semiconductor (ON), Avis Budget (CAR)
  • Tuesday includes Pfizer (PFE), Altria (MO), Advanced Micro (AMD), Starbucks (SBUX), Merck (MRK), BP (BP), Caterpillar (CAT), Uber (UBER), Pinterest (PINS), Virgin Galactic (SPCE), Prudential (PRU), Sirius XM (SIRI), Norwegian Cruise Line (NCLH), American Intl (AIG), SunPower (SPWR), SolarEdge Technologies (SEDG), Electronic Arts (EA), Marriott (MAR), JetBlue Airways (JBLU), Match Group (MTCH), MicroStrategy (MSTR), Allstate (ALL), Caesars Entertainment (CZR), Molson Coors Brewing (TAP)
  • Wednesday includes Qualcomm (QCOM), PayPal (PYPL), Realty Income (O), Shopify (SHOP), CVS Health (CVS), Simon Properties (SPG), Kraft Heinz (KHC), Unity Software (U), Etsy (ETSY), DuPont (DD), Phillips 66 (PSX), Lemonade (LMND), Marathon Oil (MRO), MGM Resorts (MGM), Clorox (CLX), APA Corp. (APA), MetLife (MET), Kinross Gold (KGC), Sunrun (RUN), Yum! Brands (YUM), McKesson (MCK), Robinhood Markets (HOOD), DoorDash (DASH), Humana (HUM)
  • Thursday includes Amazon (AMZN) Apple (AAPL) Block (SQ), Gilead Sciences (GILD), Moderna (MRNA), Airbnb (ABNB), Amgen (AMGN), ConocoPhillips (COP), Coinbase (COIN), DraftKings (DKNG), Southern (SO), Booking Holdings (BKNG), Warner Bros. Discovery (WBD), Anheuser-Busch InBev (BUD), Kellogg (K), Cigna (CI), Expedia Group (EXPE)
  • Friday includes Dominion Energy (D), Enbridge (ENB), Fisker (FSR), PPL Corp (PPL)

Investors (and algos) will focus on the conference calls and outlooks. Last quarter everyone expected the worse, we saw critical updates on production in coronavirus impacted regions and if there is extended halting of operations weighing on multi-nationals. 


Notable conferences running during the week include:


  • All day – Lithium Americas (LAC:CA) vote on planned separation of the North American and Argentine business units into two independent public companies.
  • 2:00 p.m. The Federal Reserve Board will release the Senior Loan Officer Opinion Survey Release. (
  • 4:30 p.m. Polaris (PII) Capital Markets Day
  • 4:30 p.m. Annexon (ANNX) conference call after reporting ARCHER Phase 2 results at the American Society of Retina Specialists Annual Meeting. (Annexon analysis)


  • All day – Chinese electric vehicle makers Nio (NIO), XPeng (XPEV), and Li Auto (LI) July deliveries due to be reported.


  • All day – Datadog (DDOG) two-day DASH annual conference. Expectations the company to introduce a new AI product at the event.
  • All day – ExlService Holdings (EXLS) will begin trading on a post-split basis following the five-for-one stock split.
  • All day – IPO lockup period expires for blocks of Structure Therapeutics (GPCR) shares.
  • All day – Amazon (AMZN) AWS Summit event in Taipei, Taiwan, to be followed on August 3 with an event in Sao Paulo, Brazil.
  • All day – A bankruptcy hearing on the Johnson & Johnson (JNJ) talc case could include a ruling.
  • Postmarket – Costco (COST) will report monthly sales for July.


  • Premarket – Earnings calls of Intercontinental Exchange (ICE) and Black Knight (BKI) amid ongoing merger drama.
  • 7:00 p.m. Fisker (FSR) first look at its future product portfolio at their inaugural Product Vision Day event and will unveil its strategic product roadmap.


  • All day – Shareholders with PDC Energy (PDCE) will vote on the deal to be acquired by Chevron (CVX).

Sovereign Rating Updates

IPO Wrap

US IPO Week Ahead:

Focus on yourself and what YOU CAN INFLUENCE, set your trading plan and goals in be set for 2022.

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