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Briefing In Play offers live market-moving analysis, earnings and news coverage, broker ratings changes, as well as comprehensive economic coverage and commentary. Briefing in Play Plus includes everything in Briefing In Play, and features investment idea generation and in-depth analysis. Briefing Trader includes everything in Briefing In Play Plus, and features live trading ideas with specific entry/exit points as well as access to the new streaming audio feature, Trader Audio.

May 5, 2021

Growth Stocks Ready to Rebound

Growth stocks had a tough go of it yesterday, but when the going gets tough, the tough get going. Many are on the rebound this morning, evidenced by the 96-point gain in the Nasdaq 100 futures, which are trading 0.7% above fair value.

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April 26, 2021

Ready for A Battle Royale

The S&P 500 made a run Friday at running its winning streak to five consecutive weeks. In the end, it failed. That winning streak was broken, but when it was all said and done, it felt more like a gain than a loss.

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April 19, 2021

Taking A Rest and A Spot Check

The S&P 500 has gone up in each of the last four weeks, gaining 7.0% in the process. That’s a big move in its own right and a massive move on an annualized basis, so it can be forgiven (and understood) that the S&P 500 futures are looking a little tired this morning.

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April 15, 2021

Defying Expected Norms

There hasn’t been a break in the bull market action. Granted there have been pauses here and there, with growth leading one day and value leading the next or the stay-at-home trade outperforming one day and the reopening trade outperforming the next.

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April 12, 2021

Taking A Breather for Now

The stock market rode into the weekend on a high note. In fact, it was the highest of notes for the Dow Jones Industrial Average and S&P 500, which closed at record highs.

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April 9, 2021

Mixed Action in The Futures Market

There is some mixed action in the futures market this morning that — surprise, surprise — is the opposite of what was seen yesterday. Recall that yesterday featured the outperformance of the Nasdaq 100 thanks to leadership from the growth stocks.

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April 7, 2021

Summer Doldrums Arrive Early

The calendar says we’re in the month of April, yet the “action” in the stock market makes it feel more like mid-August (aka “the summer doldrums”). Things have settled down, but the question is, for how long?

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April 1, 2021

New Month, Same Gains

The S&P 500 futures trade 21 points, or 0.5%, above fair value to begin the month of April amid follow-through strength from the mega-cap/growth stocks. The Nasdaq 100 futures outperform and trade 1.2% above fair value.

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March 29, 2021

Liquidation News Tempers Risk Sentiment

The S&P 500 futures trade 20 points, or 0.5%, below fair value to give back some of Friday’s late-day rally. The negative bias partially appears to be an extension of last week’s choppy price action.

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March 25, 2021

Stuck on The Down Elevator

This has been a defiant market so far this week. The yield on the 10-yr note has dropped 14 basis points to 1.60%, yet the major indices are down.

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March 22, 2021

Vestiges of Rebalancing In The Mix

It’s not quite the end of March, but we’re getting close. What that means is that millions of NCAA Basketball Tournament brackets have been busted. It also means that one is likely to hear the word “rebalancing” quite a bit this week.

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March 19, 2021

Music Still Playing, Markets Still Dancing Awkwardly

The spike in long-term rates yesterday was the catalyst for the weakness in the growth stocks, which broadened out to include more stocks as the day progressed. The selling was the most pronounced, though, in the high multiple stocks.

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March 16, 2021

A Return to Growth

The early action today shows a similar line of thinking versus yesterday. That line leads to the outperformance of the growth stocks, many of which could also be classified as technology stocks.

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March 9, 2021

Translation: Growth and Momentum Stock Rebound Coming

Currently, the S&P 500 futures are up 38 points and are trading 1.0% above fair value, the Nasdaq 100 futures are up 300 points and are trading 2.5% above fair value, and the Dow Jones Industrial Average futures are up 97 points and are trading 0.3% above fair value.

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February 26, 2021

Keep A Close Watch on Interest Rates

Currently, the S&P 500 futures are up 15 points and are trading 0.4% above fair value, the Nasdaq 100 futures are up 116 points and are trading 1.0% above fair value, and the Dow Jones Industrial Average futures are down 29 points and are trading slightly below fair value.

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February 22, 2021

Rising Rates Drawing Some Nervous Attention

There is a slate of M&A activity; there are reports that the House is expected to pass the $1.9 trillion stimulus proposal by the end of the week; Dr. Fauci said he thinks the U.S. will see a significant degree of normality by the end of 2021; the press is highlighting the growing potential for a really strong economic recovery this year; and Deutsche Bank has upgraded the airlines.

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February 19, 2021

Down to The Wire

It will come down to the wire today to determine if the S&P 500 has a winning week or a losing week. Over the last three trading sessions, the S&P 500 has declined 0.5%. Currently, the S&P 500 futures are up 19 points and are trading 0.5% above fair value.

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February 16, 2021

Futures and Yields Rising Together

U.S. equity index futures are extending last week’s record-setting gains in a continuation of the bullish momentum, aided by a risk-on signal in the Treasury market.

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February 10, 2021

Ready to Rebound as Bullish Bias Permeates Market

Positive responses to the earnings reports from Lyft (LYFT), Twitter (TWTR), and Coca-Cola (KO) have offset some downcast responses to the earnings reports and guidance from Cisco (CSCO), General Motors (GM), and Akamai Technologies (AKAM).

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February 5, 2021

Scars of Pandemic Reflected In January Employment Report

It is said that “the trend is your friend,” and if this week so far is any indication, the trend has been the stock market’s best friend. There have been four trading sessions and the S&P 500 is up 4.2% for the week. The S&P 500 is also at a new record high, as are the Nasdaq Composite and Russell 2000.

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February 3, 2021

Alphabet and Amazon.Com Come Through, As Expected

Alphabet (GOOG) and (AMZN) crushed it with their latest earnings results. Those stocks are indicated 6.7% and 1.8% higher, respectively. They should be higher, but what might surprise some readers is that the market isn’t indicated sharply higher.

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February 1, 2021

Still Stuck on GameStop

Stories about the GameStop trade are on the front page of The Wall Street Journal, at the top of the page on, in the Most Read section on, and appear in the featured news section on Yahoo! Finance.

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January 29, 2021

What A Mess

The market is a mess. Sometimes, it’s a beautiful mess. This time, it’s just a mess. This characterization doesn’t even have so much to do with the standing of the futures market as it does with the tonality of market conditions.

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January 15, 2021

Recovery Trade Takes A Break

There was a time when the behavior of the market was characterized as risk on or risk off. These days, the characterization is more like recovery trade on or recovery trade off. It’s a subtle, but important, nuance.

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