VIX Closes Below 25



U.S. markets were rocky to start the New Year following disappointing economic news from around the globe. The opening pullback fueled continued fears of a global slowdown, but the losses were quickly recovered by midday with the major indexes finishing slightly higher for the session.

The U.S. government shutdown shows no signs of slowing despite ongoing talks and could hamper corporate outlooks as the official start 4Q earnings season gets underway over the next few weeks. However, volatility continues to show signs for higher market highs after closing below lower support levels.

The Dow was up for the 2nd-straight session after climbing 0.1% while tapping a high of 23,413. Fresh and lower resistance at 23,400-23,600 held with close above the latter being a continuing bullish development.

The S&P 500 also advanced 0.1% following the intraday session run to 2,519. Fresh resistance at 2,525-2,550 was challenged with a close above the latter being a more bullish signal.

The Nasdaq closed in the green for the 5th-straight session after rising 0.5% while reaching a peak of 6,693. Lower resistance at 6,650-6,700 was cleared and held with a move above the latter signaling additional strength.

The Russell 2000 also extended its winning streak to 5-straight sessions after gaining 0.5% while tapping a high of 1,357. Lower resistance at 1,350-1,365 was cleared and held despite the opening backtest to 1,325.

Energy zoomed 2% to pace sector strength while Communications Services rose 1.3%.

Real Estate tanked 2.3% and led sector weakness. Utilities and Healthcare were hammered with losses of 1.7% and 1.5%, respectively.


ANALYST UPGRADES/DOWNGRADES

Bausch Health (BHC) upgraded to Overweight from Neutral at Piper Jaffray
CBS (CBS) upgraded to Overweight from Equal Weight at Stephens
Sirius XM (SIRI) upgraded to Overweight from Neutral at JPMorgan
BioMarin (BMRN) downgraded to Market Perform from Outperform at Raymond James
Hologic (HOLX) downgraded to Underweight from Equal Weight at Morgan Stanley
Louisiana-Pacific (LPX) downgraded to Neutral from Buy at BofA/Merrill




EARNINGS 
Thursday Before the Open (EST):
Park Electrochemical (PKE), Simply Good Foods (SMPL), UniFirst (UNF)

 Thursday After the Close (EST):
Flexion Therapeutics (FLXN), Landec (LNDC), Resources Connection (RECN)




UPCOMING ECONOMIC NEWS 
Thursday's Economic Reports (EST):
MBA Mortgage Applications - 7:00am
Challenger Job-Cut Report - 7:30am
ADP Employment Report - 8:15am
Jobless Claims - 8:30am
ISM Manufacturing Index - 10:00am
Construction Spending - 10:00am


METALS / OIL

Gold closed at $1,284.10 an ounce, up $2.80
Silver settled at $15.65 an ounce, up $0.11

Copper finished at $2.62 a pound, down $0.01

Crude Oil is at $46.33 a barrel, up $0.48

Bitcoin Investment Trust (GBTC) ended at $4.17, 
up $0.13




  I hope this helps you prepare for the trading day. Make it a great one!

   Todd Mitchell

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Vix Closes Below 25

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