VIX Holding the 17.50 Level

U.S. markets struggled for direction on Tuesday with the major indexes choppy throughout the session as Wall Street continued to monitor bond yields and the implication that rising yields might have on stocks.

Trade tensions were also a slight concern as the White House has apparently signaled to China that President Trump won’t meet with President Xi at the G20 summit unless China publishes a list of specific trade concessions.

The resignation of United Nations Ambassador Haley also caused some nervousness, but it was an amicable departure. Volatility stayed elevated but continued to hold key resistance levels.

The Russell 2000 dropped 0.5% while closing a half-point off its session low of 1,621. Upper support at 1,620-1,610 and the 200-day moving average held for the 3rd-straight session.

The Dow declined 0.2% after testing a morning low of 26,324. Support at 26,400-26,350 was breached but levels that held into the closing bell.

The S&P 500 traded in a 20-point range before sliding 0.1% on the pullback to 2,874. Upper support at 2,875-2,865 and the 50-day moving average held with a close below 2,850 being a warning signal for lower lows.

The Nasdaq gained 2 points, or 0.03%, and showed the most intraday strength after testing a high of 7,799. Near-term and lower resistance at 7,800 held with continued closes above this level signaling a possible short-term bottom.

Energy led sector strength after jumping 1%. Utilities and Technology rose 0.4%.

Materials easily led sector weakness after plummeting 3.3% while Industrials tumbled 1.5%.

ANALYST UPGRADES/DOWNGRADES

Conagra Brands (CAG) upgraded to Buy from Neutral at UBS
General Electric (GE) upgraded to Overweight from Equal Weight at Barclays
Willis Towers Watson (WLTW) upgraded to Outperform from Neutral at Credit Suisse
Glu Mobile (GLUU) downgraded to Neutral from Buy at Roth Capital
Kimberly-Clark (KMB) downgraded to Neutral from Buy at Goldman Sachs
Waters (WAT) downgraded to Market Perform from Outperform at Leerink

EARNINGS

Wednesday’s earnings announcements (EST): 

Before the open: ​Fastenal (FAST)
After the close: IDT (IDT)

UPCOMING ECONOMIC NEWS 
Wednesday’s Economic Reports (EST):
MBA Mortgage Applications – 7:00am
PPI-FD – 8:30am
Atlantic Fed Business Inflation Expectations – 10:00am
Wholesale Trade – 10:00am

METALS / OIL

Gold closed at $1,191.50 an ounce, up $2.90

Silver settled at $14.40 an ounce, up $0.07

Copper finished at $2.81 a pound, up $0.04

Crude Oil is at $74.72 a barrel, up $0.43

Bitcoin Investment Trust (GBTC) ended at $7.72 down $0.1

   I hope this helps you prepare for tomorrow. Have a great evening.

   Todd Mitchell

QUOTE OF THE DAY