Saturday, 16 March 2013

Market Update

The major averages finished the week on a lower note and the S&P 500 shed 0.2%. Elsewhere, the Dow Jones Industrial Average declined 0.2% and snapped its streak of ten consecutive gains. 

Equities slipped out of the gate with today's quadruple witching providing additional volume at the start. The lower open was then followed by another slip when the University of Michigan Consumer Sentiment Survey was reported below expectations. For March, the preliminary Survey fell to 71.8 from 77.6. Meanwhile, the consensus expected the reading to remain at 77.6. 

After receiving the final economic data point of the day, the S&P 500 reversed and headed back towards yesterday's close. 

By midday, the index was able to climb within one point of its flat line. However, the average could not muster additional strength, and instead began a steady slide back towards its lows. 

The S&P 500 did see its now-familiar final-hour wave of buying, but that effort was merely able to bring the index back to the middle of today's range. 

A handful of items made the session notable. The first noteworthy item was the lack of defined sector leadership. During this year's market rally, most sessions ended with either cyclical or defensively-oriented sectors clustered in the lead. Today, utilities and financials ended atop sector rankings. 



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