The Bulls Continue to Give Stock Market Support in 2012

The Bulls kept up the charge today despite mixed economic reports and European hopes of improvement.

The bulls remained “in charge” today in light of mixed economic reports and increased European (NYSE:FXE) confidence. Whether the bulls continue to hold the reins or not is likely due to whether America, Europe, and the world stay on the right side of the ledge.

Jobless claims spiked to 399,000 last week, a dramatic increase from the last week of December’s 375,000 claims. The rise in initial claims is sobering to say the least, however is likely due to end-of-year layoffs by corporations. Retail sales (NYSEARCA:XRT) increased .1% while retail sales excluding car sales dropped -.2%. It seems that the holiday spirit has definitely worn off for now and people are likely stuck with alot of credit card debt. Lastly, small business inventories rose .3% from before, and the Federal Budget (speak deficit) for December was in the red at $78 billion (more drops in the bucket).

The economic reports indicate on paper that the US Economy is still on the right side of the ledge, let’s hope it stays that way.

Perhaps what drives the bulls the most is the news from the other side of the Atlantic, as continued bond auctions in both Italy (NYSE:EWI) and Spain (NYSE:EWP) were insanely cheap despite the Euro fears. Meanwhile, the ECB has confirmed that the long term liquidation of banks “is working;” however there are rumors in the international community that Greece will default on or around March 20th unless some creditors voluntarily take more losses on Greek bonds. Can someone say déjà vu?

In other news, oil (NYSEARCA:USO) closed lower today below $100 per barrel on the the EU’s decision to pause proposed embargoes on Iran’s oil supplies, while our friend Gold (NYSEARCA:GLD) rose .8% (is Gold up from rock bottom or on the march to save the fiats?)

Bottom Line: All in all, the bulls are high on hope, the bulls are actually “in charge,” all of our problems still exist, or all three, but something (or two somethings) will likely have to give sometime.

Disclosure: No positions in ETFs or stocks discussed in this article.

John Nyaradi is the author of The ETF Investing Premium Newsletter.