• Dow trades through 34,000, S&P kisses another century mark and the Nasdaq surges as 10 yr yields plummet.

  • Earnings are beating estimates by more than 20%.

  • China tells us that their economy grew by 18+%.

  • France, Greece and Finland all making new highs.

  • Oil is up, Gasoline is up.

  • Try the Steak Florentine.

And the surge continues…. unbelievable……. the Dow up 305 pts or 0.9%, the S&P up 45 pts or 1.1%, the Nasdaq rocketing higher by 180 pts or 1.3% and the Russell added 9 pts or 0.42%......Everything humming, running on all 12 cylinders…. Macro Eco data along with the micro earnings data just ripping it up…….

Retail sales advanced 9.8% m/m vs. the 5.8% expected Ex autos and Gas it rose 8.2% vs. the expected 6.4%, Philly Fed up 50.2 well ahead of the 41.5 expected rate…. Empire Manufacturing at 26.3 vs. the expected 20.00 and then Initial Jobless Claims plunged to 576k while Continuing Claims remained a bit elevated at 3.7 mil……and then the earnings parade….do I even have to go there?  TFC, UNH, PEP, BAC, BLK, USB, RAD, C, SCHW all hitting out of the park and while DAL reported a loss – I must ask - Are you really surprised? I mean think about it for just one second…. it is DAL – they fly planes – or they do not….so if you were banking on a beat – I would say – What we are thinking??  Hello?

Earnings?  Well – so far, we have heard from 40 S&P companies and 88% of them have not only beaten estimates on both the top and bottom lines but are beating them by better than 20% on average – which says a couple of things…. Analysts were being very conservative in their analysis; companies were being extremely cautious in the amount of information they revealed to the analysts and the speed of the recovery caught everyone by surprise.  In any event – it is what it is and there is nothing that appears to be slowing this train down…

Earnings today include PNC, KSU, CFG, MS, ALLY, STT, BK are just some of the names that will report today….

And the 10 yr. yield plunged ending the day at 1.57% - now this is down from the most recent highs of 1.77% only weeks ago…. that rise in rates then credited to a building recovery, strong economy, and rising inflation….…… which then leads me to ask…. Why then, would the bond market go higher sending yields lower as the economy recovers?  Is the inflation story is fading?    That is not the typical reaction when the economic data is as strong as it is…. or is it all smoke and mirrors?  Remember – this data came in the same month as the ‘stimmy checks’ – so the thinking is that the numbers are a flash in the pan…. a one and done reading….and that I say – Baloney…. but I am one lone voice in a sea of many.

The VIX – fear index – also moved lower as the excitement over the strong data allowed investors to push fear aside and go all in…. the VIX is now at lows not seen since January 2020 – the month before the pandemic washed across the world.

Eco data today – Housing Starts – exp of +13.5% m/m, Building Permits +1.7%.

Global news…. China reports that 1st Qtr. GDP grew by 18.3% y/y – but missing the 19% estimate.  Retail sales jumped 34% while Industrial Production rose 14.1% missing the 17% estimate – that is IF you want to believe any of the macro data that comes out of China – I am in the camp that you take anything they say with a barrel of salt! But markets across the Asia ended the week on a high note.  Japan + 0.14%, Hong Kong + 0.6%, China +0.35% and the ASX +0.07%.

European markets are up – rallying on the back of the positive China data – although some are arguing that GDP and Industrial Production missed the estimates – Eurozone inflation data for March is inline…. nothing to worry about.  Markets there, like everywhere else – enjoying stronger economic data as well as earnings data……it is all good.  At 5:30 am…FTSE +0.51%, CAC 40 + 0.35%, DAX +0.71%, EUROSTOXX +0.38%, SPAIN +0.57% and ITALY +0.26%.

Oil – Up again Ladies and Gentlemen adding 16 cts to take it to $63.60/barrel.  This after the IEA (Int’l Energy Agency) raised its forecast – upgraded what they think DEMAND will be….as all the ‘major economies’ wake up……Citibank Analyst saying.

“We see robust stock draws even after factoring in bearish risks as refinery runs are set to rise sharply in the coming months…”  Ahhhhh?  Does that sound familiar to anyone???  Have we heard this anywhere before??? 

Demand is alive and well….and oil prices (thus gas prices) are on the rise…. get ready……We do remain in the $60/$65 range – but am beginning to think that $70 is in the cards by July….

Bitcoin has retreated a bit and is trading at $60,000 and Ethereum is trading at $2380….And Cathie Woods of ARK Investments is going ALL in on Coinbase….buying $246 million dollars on Wednesday….that would be about 700k shares depending on her average price….her ARKK ETF is now kissing both converging trendlines at $130….if it pushes up and through then look for a run to the all time high of $160….which would be about a 25% move up from here….

The S&P closed at 4170…. Busting up and through the 4150 range I identified on Wednesday……and remember – I said then that if we pushed up and through then you could make an argument for 4400 – which sounds rich – but it is only a 5% moved from here….and here is already up 11% ytd….so is another 5% really a stretch?  Absolutely not….….and if the macro data continues to surprise to the upside – it feels like 4400 may even be underestimating….

Now if we suddenly get hit by an unexpected event and the markets come under pressure – we could see a swift move lower as buyers step aside…. Look for trendline support at 3943…. (which sounds ugly, but only represents a 5% move – well within the normal range.).

Remember – stay focused….do not get caught up in the hysteria of it all…. take the time to trim a bit in names that have clearly outperformed or if you do not want to do that - then just add money to those sectors or names that have underperformed….

Steak Florentine

Steak...for the meat lovers - this is a great dish.... Start with a nice cut T-Bone or Rib Eye - always on the bone as the bone provides so much more flavor and makes a nicer presentation for your dinner guests.

You will need: The steaks, Garlic cloves, Pork fatback, dried rosemary, coarse salt (kosher salt works nicely) and pepper. Remove steaks from fridge - rinse under cold water and pat dry with a paper towel.  Leave on a platter for about 20 mins so that they get to room temp.

In a food processor blend the pork fatback, garlic, rosemary to a paste-like consistency. Next - wash your hands and massage this mixture into the steaks - taking time to make sure that you have worked the meat and the mixture well. Now season with S&P.  Set aside.

Light the grill and turn the heat to high and allow the grill time heat up - it must be nice and hot. Place the steaks on the grill and cook for about 5 min/side - depending on thickness - This will result in a med-rare steak...so if you add a couple more mins on each side you will get a more cooked center.

Remember though - when you remove the steaks from the grill - you will cover and let them rest for 4 mins allowing them time to continue cooking and allowing for the juice to flow.    Once ready serve immediately on warmed plates. Mashed potatoes and peas always work well with this dish along with a mixed green salad with red wine vinaigrette dressing.

This meal deserves a robust red wine - my favorite is Brunello di Montalcino – it is like velvet.

General Disclosures

Information and commentary provided by ButcherJoseph Asset Management, LLC (“BJAM”), are opinions and should not be construed as facts. The market commentary is for informational purposes only and should not be deemed as a solicitation to invest or increase investments in BJAM products or the products of BJAM affiliates. The information contained herein constitutes general information and is not directed to, designed for, or individually tailored to, any particular investor or potential investor. This report is not intended to be a client-specific suitability analysis or recommendation, an offer to participate in any investment, or a recommendation to buy, hold or sell securities. Do not use this report as the sole basis for investment decisions. Do not select an asset class or investment product based on performance alone. Consider all relevant information, including your existing portfolio, investment objectives, risk tolerance, liquidity needs and investment time horizon. There can be no guarantee that any of the described objectives can be achieved. BJAM does not undertake to advise you of any change in its opinions or the information contained in this report. Past performance is not a guarantee of future results. Information provided from third parties was obtained from sources believed to be reliable, but no reservation or warranty is made as to its accuracy or completeness.

Different types of investments involve varying degrees of risk and there can be no assurance that any specific investment will be profitable. The price of any investment may rise or fall due to changes in the broad markets or changes in a company’s financial condition and may do so unpredictably. BJAM does not make any representation that any strategy will or is likely to achieve returns similar to those shown in any performance results that may be illustrated in this presentation. There is no assurance that a portfolio will achieve its investment objective.

Definitions and Indices

The S&P 500 Index is a stock market index based on the market capitalization of 500 leading companies publicly traded in the U.S. stock market, as determined by Standard & Poor’s.


BJAM is an investment advisor registered in North Carolina and Arizona. Such registration does not imply a certain level of skill or training. BJAM’s advisory fee and risks are fully detailed in Part 2 of its Form ADV, available upon request.

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