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Kevin Matras   
Profit from the Pros
By Kevin Matras
Executive Vice President
Zacks Investment Research

Stocks Close Higher, Near All-Time Highs

Stocks closed higher yesterday with all of the major indexes closing within striking distance of their all-time highs.

As I mentioned yesterday, political headlines will likely dominate the news cycle this week with inauguration today, and the likelihood of a slew of Executive Orders to follow for the rest of the week. Not to mention more talk about the newly proposed $1.9 trillion stimulus/relief bill.

Janet Yellen, who is expected to become the new Treasury Secretary, told the Senate yesterday that Congress needs to "act big" to support the economy in the wake of the pandemic. She is advocating for more stimulus and the market cheered the news.

We also saw earnings season kick into gear with financial giants Goldman Sachs and Bank of America posting positive EPS surprises.

And after the close, Netflix posted a positive sales surprise of 0.15%, although a negative EPS surprise of -12.5%. But shares surged in after-hours trade by more than 12% on better than expected subscriber growth of 8.51 million last quarter vs. expectations for 6.03 million, and news that it would no longer need external financing.

We have 137 more companies on deck to report this week. And another 555 next week.

Earnings season is always an exciting time since stocks usually go up during earnings season.

We'll also get more economic news today with MBA Mortgage Applications, the Redbook retail sales report, and the Housing Market Index.

With the markets sitting near their all-time highs, it won't take much to get them to break out even higher.

See you tomorrow,

Kevin Matras

Executive Vice President, Zacks Investment Research


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