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Profit from the Pros By Kevin Matras Executive Vice President
S&P Hits New All-Time High
Stocks closed mostly higher yesterday with the Nasdaq leading the way, and the S&P hitting new all-time highs.
The halt to Johnson & Johnson's vaccine, while they try to better understand the rare but serious blood clotting issue that has affected 6 people so far (out of 6.8 million who have received the J&J vaccine), weighed on the Dow a bit. But JNJ was only down -1.34%. Nobody is questioning the effectiveness of the vaccine. They just need to understand how to better identify the issue and how to better treat it.
Aside from that, stocks continue to push higher on optimism for a robust economic recovery.
That was underscored with yesterday's Redbook report which showed same store retail sales up 13.2% on a y/y basis vs. last month's 10.6% snapshot.
The Consumer Price Index, ex-Food and Energy, was up 0.3% m/m and 1.6% y/y. That's an improvement from last month's 0.1% m/m reading and 1.3% y/y. But still a long way to go before we get to a desired inflation target of +2%.
And the NFIB Small Business Optimism Index increased to 98.2 from last month?s 95.8. That's a solid 2.5% increase.
Later today we'll get another look at housing with the MBA Mortgage Applications report, a look at inflation expectations with the Atlanta Fed Business Inflation Expectations report, and the overall economy with the Beige Book report.
In the meantime, the economy continues to improve.
And stocks are rallying because if it.
So make sure you're taking full advantage of it.
See you tomorrow,
Executive Vice President, Zacks Investment Research
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