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MLR - Premarket Pulse Monday August 20, 2012

The market is looking to build on last week's gains as the futures remain relatively flat to slightly up an hour before the opening, a good sign considering the strong gains achieved over the last two trading days. U.S. indexes all closed last week at their highest highs since the early June lows with the S&P 500 acheiving its highest weekly close since the market lows of March 2009. Investors remain skeptical of the rally as NYSE short interest remains very high at 19.43%, and while some may try to find fault in Friday's lower-volume rally to higher-highs, the fact remains that Thursday's extremely strong volume move to the upside keeps the market in convincing bull mode pending further evidence to the contrary.

Investors also should not assume that the current rally is all about QE, as the potential for a "Romney Rally" remains a potentially strong theme for a continued market rally. But investors will also be looking forward to the release of the latest Fed meeting minutes on Wednesday as they search for hints of QE3 to come, while the possibliity of greater QE coming out of Europe remains a distinct possiblity as well. Over the weekend, a Reuters story noted how Germany's Merkel is a "secret fan" of ECB Chief Mario Draghi and his new, joint EFSF/ECB bond buying program which she publicly endorsed this past week.

The market rally remains in force until further notice, and continued upside will likely only serve to drive more money into stocks as professional money managers are forced to "keep up" with the major market indexes.

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