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Stocks Up, Economic Data Supportive Amid Trade Uncertainty

Stocks closed higher yesterday with most indexes erasing Monday's losses and then some.

Trade concerns continue to dominate the market. And a report that the administration will grant a 90-day extension before implementing their Huawei ban helped lift stocks yesterday.

But the stalled U.S.-China trade talks are still on everyone's mind.

In other news, Retail Sales looked strong coming in at a 5.2% y/y growth rate. That was just under last week's 5.4% pace. But both of those numbers are decidedly strong.

Existing Home Sales slipped to 5.190 million units (annualized) from last month's 5.210 million. That's a relatively small dip. But it did miss the consensus view of 5.350 million. Although, the report was quick to point out that housing data can be 'volatile' and that the '3-month average can offer a more balanced view.' On that basis, the 3-month average comes in at 5.293 million, which in turn rates as the 'best showing since September last year.'

This morning we'll get another look at the housing market through the MBA Mortgage Applications report.

And then later this afternoon we'll get the FOMC Minutes. As you know, the Fed chose to leave rates alone at their last meeting. And suggested they may be done raising rates altogether this year. And now market talk has turned from rate hikes to speculation over rate cuts. I'm not anticipating any unexpected revelation in the minutes. But it will still be interesting to see what the official readout says.

In the meantime, the economy looks great.

Most of the major indexes continue to base near their all-time highs.

And plenty of individual stocks are breaking out to new all-time highs.

See you tomorrow,

Kevin Matras

Executive Vice President, Zacks Investment Research


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