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Actionable news in INTC: Intel Corporation,

Dancing With The Devil

DOW + 135 = 21,993
SPX + 24 = 2465
NAS + 83 = 6340
RUT + 20 = 1394
10 Y + .03 = 2.22%
OIL – 1.32 = 47.50
GOLD – 7.10 = 1282.60
BITCOIN + 0.92% = 4423.18 USD
ETHEREUM – 3.68% = 291.37

Stock were broadly higher, with the S&P 500 Index gaining the most since April. Volatility was in retreat, as the CBOE Volatility Index fell below 12.5 after topping 16 last Thursday. After a week of market jitters, investors were calmed after South Korea’s president said resolving North Korea’s nuclear ambitions must be done peacefully and U.S. officials played down the risk of an imminent war.

With more than 90 percent of the S&P 500 members having reported second-quarter results, earnings growth is tracking at a 12.2 percent pace year-over-year, much better than the 8.4 percent expected at the start of the quarter. This marks the second straight quarter of double-digit growth – the fastest two quarters of growth since 2011.

More than half of S&P companies topped forecasts, the highest percentage since the second quarter of 2010, although the average upside surprise was 4%, slightly below the long-term average of 5%.

All sectors of the benchmark are on pace to beat projections, except energy, where less than 40 percent of companies topped earnings forecasts. Technology and health care continue to lead upside surprises, with more than 85 percent of tech companies and 75 percent of health companies posting better-than-expected earnings per share. Markets are forward looking.

Of the S&P 500’s 11 primary sectors, forecasts for 2018’s profits have come down for six of them. The average estimate of analysts polled by FactSet see S&P 500 SPX earnings of $141.81 a share in 2018. That’s down 0.2% from the $142.15 a share estimate that was forecast at the end of June.

Forecasts have come down even more for the remainder of the current year. For 2017, analysts see earnings of $130.46 a share for the S&P 500. That’s down 3.5% from the $135.25 that was forecast at the end of April. The S&P has risen 3.5% since that date.

Just a reminder, in the first half of 2016, S&P 500 companies were going through an earnings recession but earnings in the second half of 2016 recovered nicely – those earnings from last year are used as comparison for this year; so, the first half of 2017 had a low hurdle for comparison – the hurdle will now be a bit tougher.

After department stores revealed a string of lackluster earnings last week, Home Depot, one of the sturdiest retailers in America, will report results on Tuesday. The home improvement giant is expected to post strong profits, as it continues to ward off competition from Amazon.

Target posts results on Wednesday. On Thursday, Walmart will report its results. Investors will look to see whether the nation’s biggest retailer can continue to grow its e-commerce and grocery business amid intense competition.

By now you are familiar with the events of the weekend in Charlottesville, Virginia. A man was arrested after driving a car into a crowd of peaceful counter-protesters, causing many injuries and one death; and two officers died when a police helicopter in the area crashed.

Trump said...