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Bullish Seasonal Winds At Our Backs

The markets put in a narrowly mixed day yesterday with only the Nasdaq finishing in the green. But the Dow and the S&P were off only marginally.

The market is still bracing for Friday's spending bill deadline to avoid a government shutdown. And we have the always important Employment Situation report also due on Friday as well.

These two events will likely influence trading on Friday and for the rest of the year. While the jobs report should have a shorter shelf-life, the spending bill (especially if not passed) will have longer-term consequences.

Let's also not forget the tax cut reconciliation. Granted, that's not coming to a head on Friday. But given that the President wants it on his desk by Christmas, the clock is ticking on this major market influencing event as well.

In other news, yesterday's MBA Mortgage Applications were up by 4.7% with purchases up 2.0% and refi's up 9.0%.

The Productivity and Costs report showed productivity up 3.0% while labor costs were down -0.2%. On an annualized basis, however, output is coming in at 4.1% while compensation is running at 2.7%.

And the ADP Employment Report is estimating private payrolls to have increased by 190,000. This is often looked at as a foreshadowing to the Employment Situation report which comes out shortly thereafter. At the moment, the Bureau of Labor Statistics is forecasting a gain of 184,000. Would like to see that estimate bumped up to match the ADP report. But both are within the same general range. Now the BLS report only has to deliver.

In the meantime, the market still looks great. And we have the seasonal winds at our back.

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Best,

Kevin Matras

Executive Vice President, Zacks Investment Research

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