Market Insights / Don's Notebook

Don’s Notebook February 28, 2018

By Don Pratl

The S&P 500 Index finished yesterday’s session 1.3 percent lower, its biggest decline in weeks, after testimony from Federal Reserve Chair Jerome Powell in Congress was viewed as hawkish by markets. The DJIA, NASDAQ and RUT all closed lower for the day yesterday. The weakness in the American markets spread globally. Last night the MSCI Asia Pacific Index fell 1.1 percent, while Japan’s Topix index closed 1.2 percent lower. In Europe, the Stoxx 600 Index was 0.4 percent lower at 5:50 a.m. Eastern Time, with that index having its worst month since June 2016.

The second estimate for fourth-quarter GDP will offer a look back at the economy while pending home sales will offer a future look at the housing market.

  • U.S. fourth-quarter GDP was revised slightly lower to 2.5 percent this morning.
  • Pending home sales have been rising at a steady and moderate rate will be reported later today. Consensus for this January pending sales index, which is for January, is a moderate gain of 0.3 percent.
  • The ISM-Chicago survey (traditionally and informally called the Chicago PMI) registers manufacturing and non- manufacturing activity in the Chicago region. A 65 reading is expected compared to 65.7 last period.

Today’s MMB quote: “Price does not lie. Technical Analysis focuses on price.” Bennett McDowell, CEO of

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