S&P Closes at Another Record Peak

U.S. markets showed weakness throughout Tuesday’s session as the start of the Fed’s two-day policy meeting got underway and Wall Street looks towards the central bank’s plan for its balance sheet moving forward. Near-term and fresh support levels held intraday after House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney says the U.S. should know in the next two weeks whether it will reach a trade deal with China.

The blue-chips and overall market showed some afternoon strength but disappointing corporate earnings from one of Tech’s bellwether companies and weaker-than-expected economics were too much to overcome the mixed finish.

The Nasdaq dropped 0.7% following the 1st half pullback to 8,050. Fresh and upper support at 8,075-8,025 held with a move below the 8,000 level being a slightly bearish development.

The Russell 2000 was down 0.5% after failing to clear the 1,600 level on the open. Support at 1,585-1,570 was breached but held on the fade to 1,580 afterwards with a close below the latter and the 50/200-day moving averages being a bearish signal.

The S&P 500 added 0.1% despite trading to a low of 2,924 intraday. Fresh and upper support at 2,925-2,900 held with resistance at 2,950 holding by a couple of points into the closing bell.

The Dow advanced 0.2% after testing a late session high of 26,614. Fresh and lower resistance at 26,600-26,800 was cleared but held for the 2nd-straight session with a move above the latter getting record highs in play.

Utilities led sector winners after soaring 1.6%. Real Estate and Consumer Staples were higher by 1.2%.

Communication Services sank 2.3% while Consumer Discretionary and Energy lagged 0.2% and 0.1%, respectively.

ANALYST UPGRADES/DOWNGRADES

Alaska Air (ALK) upgraded to Overweight from Neutral at JPMorgan
Northrop Grumman (NOC) upgraded to Overweight from Neutral at Alembic Global
Vipshop (VIPS) upgraded to Overweight from Neutral at JPMorgan

Alphabet (GOOG) downgraded to Hold from Buy at Stifel
Bank of America (BAC) downgraded to Neutral from Overweight at Atlantic Equities
Trex Company (TREX) downgraded to Neutral from Buy at B. Riley FBR

EARNINGS 
Before the open (EST):
​AMC Networks (AMCX), Black Knight (BKI), CDW (CDW), Clorox (CLX), CVS Health (CVS), Extreme Networks (EXTR), Ferro (FOE), Hilton Worldwide (HLT), Humana (HUM), Johnson Controls (JCI), KBR (KBR), Littlefuse (LFUS), Molson Coors Brewing (TAP), NiSource (NI), Peabody Energy (BTU), Radware (RDWR), Sealed Air (SEE), Timken (TKR), Walker & Dunlop (WD), Yum Brands (YUM)

After the close(EST):
​Allstate (ALL), Ballard Power Systems (BLDP), Cheesecake Factory (CAKE), Cree (CREE), Dolby Laboratories (DLB), Exelixis (EXEL), Fitbit (FIT), HCP (HCP), Hologic (HOLXWealth Strength IndexHOLX is Moderately Flat and trending Down), Hyatt Hotels (H), James River Group (JRVR), Life Storage (LSI), Man Tech International (MANT), Noble Drilling (NE), Open Text (OTEX), Public Storage (PSA), Qualcomm (QCOMWealth Strength IndexQCOM is Extremely Flat and trending Up), Ryerson (RYI), Square (SQ), Trimble Navigation (TRMB), Valvoline (VVV), Williams Companies (WMB), Zynga (ZNGA)

UPCOMING ECONOMIC NEWS 
Wednesday’s economic reports (EST): 
MBA Mortgage Applications – 7:00am
ADPWealth Strength IndexADP is Moderately Flat and trending Down Employment Report – 8:15am
PMI Manufacturing Index – 9:45am
ISM Manufacturing Index – 10:00am
Construction Spending – 10:00am
FOMC Minutes – 2:00pm

METALS / OIL
Gold closed at $1,285.70 an ounce, up $4.20
Silver settled at $14.98 an ounce, up $0.05
Copper finished at $2.90 a pound, up $0.01
Crude Oil was at $63.47 a barrel, down $0.10
Bitcoin Investment Trust (GBTC) ended at $6.61 up $0.40

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

   Todd Mitchell