Bulls Post Double-Digits Gains for Q1

U.S. markets ended the week, month, and the first-quarter on a strong note amid reports that the U.S. and China trade talks are progressing into the finer details of a written agreement. Treasury yields stabilized and also edged higher to reflect the bullish tone following the ominous plunge and inversion that shook investor confidence. Meanwhile, volatility continues to ease and is approaching major support while showing signs of testing fresh 2019 lows.

The Dow jumped 0.8% following the late session push to 25,949. Near-term and upper resistance at 25,750-26,000 held with a close above the latter getting 26,250-26,500 and fresh 2019 highs in play. The blue-chips notched a 1.5% weekly gain, but edged up just 0.1% in March, while surging 11.2% in the first-quarter.

The Nasdaq was also up 0.8% after trading to a second half high of 7,733. Fresh and lower resistance at 7,750-7,800 held with a move above the latter signaling additional strength towards 7,850 and the 2019 peak. Tech logged a 1.1% weekly rise, and was up 2.6% for the month, while advancing 16.5% for the first three months of the year.

The S&P 500 rose 0.7% following the late day test to 2,836. Current and lower resistance at 2,825-2,850 was cleared and held with a move above the latter and the 2019 high at 2,852 signaling additional momentum. The index was up 1.2% for the week, with a 1.8% monthly rise, and a first-quarter advance of 13.1%.

The Russell 2000 climbed 0.3% after tapping a morning high of 1,546. Lower resistance at 1,535-1,550 held into the closing bell with a move above the latter getting 1,560-1,575 back in the mix. The small-caps jumped 2.2% for the week but sank 2.3% in March, to trim its quarterly advance to 14.2%.

Healthcare and Industrials led sector strength after rallying 1.2% and 1.1%, respectively. Technology and Materials were were higher by 1% and 0.9%. Energy and Real Estate were the only sector laggards after falling 0.15% and 0.03%, respectively.

For the week, Industrials and Materials soared 2.9% and 2.2%. Utilities and Communications Services were the only laggards after giving back 0.6% and 0.4%. For the first-quarter, Technology zoomed 20.5% while Industrials and Real Estate surged 17.7% and 17.1%. Financials and Healthcare lagged but still soared 9% and 7.6%, as there were no sector losers for the quarter.

 

  I hope this helps you prepare for the trading day. Make it a great one!

   Todd Mitchell