The markets paused today with SPX rising only two dollars to $2052 and RUT losing three dollars to close at $1099. Volatility continues to contract with the VIX dropping about two tenths of a point to 13.8%.
Trading volume was down dramatically after expiration Friday with 2.0 billion shares of the S&P 500 stocks. Trading on the NYSE dropped 52% and trading volume dropped 44% on NASDAQ.
The only economic data released today were existing home sales for February at 5.08 million, down from 5.47 million homes.
SPX opened weakly this morning and traded down to $2043 before rebounding to close at $2052. It seems as though everyone assumes the bull market is returning. This is surprising since it wasn't long ago that the doomsday gurus were on every finance cable network. The reality is probably in between those extremes. The basic U.S. economic data simply don't support the idea of a booming market. But those same data don't support the dire predictions of recession either. Stay tuned.