Retail Sales Take Markets Higher
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Jonathan Yates
Retail Sales Take Markets Higher

The major stock markets continue to rise, taking any good news as a bullish indicator.  April retail sales posted an unexpected gain.  Analysts were expecting a drop of 0.3%.  Instead, retail sales were up 0.1% in April.  That figure topped the mark for April 2012 by 3.7%.

As a result, the Dow Jones Industrial Average jumped by more than 123 points, the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index was higher by 16.57, and the Nasdaq closed up 23.82.

As detailed in a previous post on this site, the past earnings season was positive due to reduced spending, not higher revenues.  About this one commentor wrote about the bull market, “A 6% gain in less than four weeks though? I do have a problem with that size of a move in the short time frame. In fact, sooner or later, someone’s going to wake up and ask themselves whether or not stocks have actually justified the 20% romp since mid-November. The S&P 500 is now priced at a trailing P/E of 16.7 as a result of the runup, which isn’t frighteningly expensive, but it’s hardly cheap either.”

The charts below show that each index closed off, with a negative candlestick formation.  But bullish sentiment now tops bearish by 2-1.


There were more than twice as many stocks advancing (4291) and those declining (1842).  Those hitting a new high greatly outnumbered those reaching a new low by a better than 15 to 1 margin.  For momentum traders, about 70% of stocks are trading above both the 50-day and 200-day moving averages.

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