Major averages rose on lower volume after it was reported that the US churned out 223,000 new jobs in April, pushing unemployment rate down to 5.4% from 5.5%, the lowest level since mid-2008. This is a good sign the economy is recovering after growth stalled in the first quarter and hiring briefly nosedived. All major averages are now once again above their respective 50dmas.
While the unemployment statistics are somewhat suspect, the number of people who entered the labor force in search of work also rose. Plus, institutional market psychology is key as it determines whether the big boys step up which pushes the markets higher. And institutional portfolio managers are always in a race to beat the major averages. So, one could argue in lemming-like fashion, portfolio managers follow the big money flows. Not that there is anything wrong with this strategy as long as a PM is quick to reverse course away from the herd at the right time, such as in early 2008 or March/April of 2000. Of course, most don't thus the majority fail to beat major benchmarks such as the S&P 500.
The latest employment figures push the odds in favor of the Federal Reserve raising interest rates in 2015 for the first time in nine years. The central bank has said it is data dependent, tying its decision to steady improvement in the labor market.
While we had a number of pocket pivots and buyable gap ups in recent days, keep in mind that the market may still be stuck in a trading range, though the true leaders will buck a general market trading range.
Mobileye (MBLY) announced earnings this morning pre-open, and is set to gap up slightly. We had previously reported on this as a buyable gap-up move three weeks ago
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