Futures up this morning after the markets experienced their worst fall of 2012 on Tuesday. The Dow had yet to register a triple digit loss this year, and yesterday fell more than 200 points. Private bondholders have yet to agree to terms of a debt swap with Greece, and have until Thursday to do so before triggering a messy default. European markets are mostly higher today, possibly anticipating a deal getting done.
The way we judge future direction after a pull-back is by measuring the bounce! We have a few big events over the next few days that could play a significant part in the next market move. We have ADP employment numbers today, the Greek debt meeting Thursday, and then Friday’s big jobs report. Yesterday took us almost to a 25% retracement of the move from December 20th, which would be a healthy level to hold and bounce off of.
Apple (AAPL) could also provide a welcome distraction from the Greece situation with its major product launch today. The Cupertino-based company is expected to unveil the latest version of its tablet, the iPad 3.
Pandora (P) shares are 25% lower this morning after the company reported a larger than expected 4th quarter loss and weaker than expected first-quarter forecasts.
Crude oil tumbled yesterday but has steadied today, with April crude contracts rising $0.44. Gold also has recovered a bit from yesterday’s big sell-off, up around 0.5%.
A quick bounce would take the market back to S&P 1350-1354, which would be a spot to take some quick profits if you went long on the close. If the sellers/bears wish to press further declines on the back of yesterday, then they will defend the 1357-1359 area (this would be area to salvage some longs and perhaps “re-short” if you covered yesterday). How we handle that zone will be key if we get there.
If they sell the open and take us negative, use yesterday’s low of 1340 as a level. Under that is a small spot at 1332-1334. The next big zone will be the 50% retracement and the 50day moving average in the 1320 area.
There have been some groups that held in better than others. Some that lead us lower. We need to evaluate closely as we move forward.
Disclosures: Scott Redler is long AAPL, LVS.