S&P Midcap E-Mini Futures Market News and Commentary
The S&P 500 ($SPX) on Monday closed up +0.28%, the Dow Jones Industrials index ($DOWI) closed up +0.07%, and the Nasdaq 100 Index ($IUXX) closed up +0.90%. Stocks rallied on Monday on increased optimism about the US/Chinese trade talks after the U.S. and China made some goodwill gestures that may lead to the scheduling of new face-to-face trade talks. China's official news agency on Sunday reported that Chinese companies are making inquiries about buying U.S. agriculture products and are applying for exemptions from tariffs on U.S. products. Stocks also saw support from reports that Congress and the White House are close to a deal on a debt ceiling increase until July 2021 and new 2-year budget caps, which would avert a debt ceiling crisis in September or October and another government shutdown on October 1. Technology stocks were supported on Monday as Apple rallied on a price target increase by Morgan Stanley. Also, Micron Technology, Lam Research, and Applied Materials were supported by upgrades to Buy from Neutral by Goldman Sachs. The stock market faces a heavy schedule of earnings this week, some of which could show damage from the trade war. The stock market is also carefully watching tensions in the Persian Gulf as the UK tries to get Iran to release the UK-flagged oil tanker that Iran seized last Friday near the Strait of Hormuz. The stock market is seeing support from 100% expectations for the FOMC next week to cut interest rates by -25 bp. The VIX on Monday edged to a 2-week high of 14.70% but then fell back and closed the day down -0.92 at 13.53%. The VIX remains moderately above the 3-month low of 12.04% (July 5) and April's 11-1/4 month low of 11.03%.