Saturday, April 19, 2014

Stock Market: Happy Easter 2014

(Drivebycuriosity) - It is Easter again. New York City welcomes the Christian feast with plenty of sunshine and springlike temperatures. A lot people are on the streets, places and parks - enjoying the friendly weather and the extra holidays. Many countries in the Western world celebrate Easter in some way or another. In Germany for examples most people have 4 days off, including Good Friday (called "Karfreitag", a Catholic term) and Easter Monday. Even Wall Street was closed on Good Friday.

Easter also stands for the begin of spring. The German literature has a lot of Easter poems which are referring to the seasonal issue. The most popular German Easter riddle is "Der Osterspaziergang" (the Easter walk  ostern) by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe. It starts with the line "Vom Eise befreit sind Strom und B├Ąche" ("freed from the ice are rivers and creeks").

Even the stock market seems to celebrate Easter. The last week finished with a 4-days rally and the S&P 500, a gauge of the US stock market, gained 2.7% for the week - deleting the losses from the weeks before. The economic news is encouraging. The numbers signal that the winterly break of the US economy may be over.

Last week we learned that the US weekly jobless claims fell on the lowest level since 2007, March retail sales grew 1.1%, the biggest increase since September 2012 and the Philly Fed manufacturing index jumped to 16.6 in April, versus expectations of 9 (ritholtz).

The earnings season (company reports from Q1 2014) also started well. With less than one-fifth of S&P 500 companies having reported results so far, about 63% have topped earnings expectations, exceeding the 56% average over the past four quarters, reports Reuters (reuters).

Happy Easter to everyone!

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