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The Week Ahead Stock Market Update | July 3, 2017

The leading central bankers of the world caused a typical green-bar-red-bar madness in stock markets last week, as the European Central Bank, especially, delivered confusing messages at the monetary summit in Portugal. The Euro experienced a huge rally, as investors deciphered the speeches of Mario Draghi and his colleagues as a step towards monetary tightening, despite the fact that they tried to downplay that speculation. Thursday’s session was scary for bulls as the Nasdaq led an almost 2% decline in the major benchmarks, testing its “Flash-Crash” lows from two weeks earlier. Tech stocks bounced off the lows once again, and the market settled down and finished on a positive note on Friday.

Economic numbers were mixed once again, but the weakness in the more forward-looking indicators is still pointing to troubles ahead in the coming quarters. Core durable orders posted another sizeable miss, while the CB Consumer Confidence Index and the final GDP print came in above consensus estimates. The brief optimism regarding the housing market faded away quickly, as pending home sales declined by almost 1% on a monthly basis (analysts were expecting a rise of similar magnitude). The Chicago PMI was the brightest spot, surging to a new 3-year high and beating expectations by a longshot. Long-term Treasuries took a hit despite the mixed releases, but that was likely the result of the perceived shift in central banks’ future policies rather than a positive turn in economic...