The first trading session of 2015 is upon us. A new year provides the opportunity, or to be more precise, an excuse to start anew. The two constants from 2014 are starting off 2015 the same way. Crude oil is plunging to new 6+ year lows, and the US dollar is hitting fresh 9+ year highs.
Stock futures are higher to start 2015. Prices have yet to get back to the highs we saw the last day of 2014, before we had a nasty late day sell-off. While 2014 ended on a sour note, stock futures are pointing to a pretty sweet start to 2015.
Here is what I am reading this morning:
U.S. equities are back on the rise to reverse some profit-taking into year-end, though with much of Asia and Europe either officially or unofficially closed to end the week and start the year there is not much to glean from the moves. The Dow is 77-points higher, S&P popped 9-points and NASDAQ rallied 20-points ahead of the open. With China and Japan out, China's PMI fell on deaf ears to 50.1 from 50.3, though the Hong Kong Hang Seng climbed 1.1% as a perverse proxy anyway amid hopes for more stimulus in the region. Similarly tepid trade in Europe had an opposite impact, with weaker UK and Eurozone PMI, and a dovish Draghi, yielding a 0.3% drop on the Euro Stoxx 50 and 0.6% decline on the German DAX. Next up are ISM manufacturing and construction spending stateside both forecast to come in on the weaker side as well.