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TODAY’S S&P 500 SET-UP - December 23, 2010

As we look at today’s set up for the S&P 500, the range is 11 points or -1.01% downside to 1245 and 0.01% upside to 1259.  Equity futures remain near flat to fair value on a slow news day, ahead of several economic reports, including Weekly Jobless Claims and December final Michigan Consumer Sentiment.

Oil futures have climbed to a near two year high as cold weather across the US and Europe lifts demand.

After the close, Bed Bath and Beyond reported consensus beating quarterly earnings and provided an upbeat outlook.

  • Amylin Pharmaceuticals (AMLN) and Lilly submitted sNDA to FDA for expanded use of Byetta injection
  • Bed Bath & Beyond (BBBY) sees full year EPS $2.86-$2.90 vs est. $2.81, announces $2b buyback
  • Crocs (CROX) said CFO Russell C. Hammer resigned, effective Dec. 31
  • Micron Technology (MU) reported 1Q rev. $2.25b vs est. $2.37b
  • Watson Pharmaceuticals (WPI) said its oral contraceptive won FDA approval
  • Wintrust Financial (WTFC) sees $11.4m charge related to repurchase of 250k shares issued under TARP


  • One day: Dow +0.23%, S&P +0.34%, Nasdaq +0.15%, Russell 2000 +0.01%
  • Month-to-date: Dow +5.03%, S&P +6.63%, Nasdaq +6.93%, Russell +8.75%;
  • Quarter-to-date: Dow +7.15%, S&P +10.31%, Nasdaq +12.79%, Russell +16.93%
  • Year-to-date: Dow +10.85%, S&P +12.89%, Nasdaq +17.73%, Russell +26.42%
  • Sector Performance: Financials +1.1%, Utilities +0.5%, Energy +0.4%, Consumer Spls +0.4%, Industrials +0.3%, Health-care +0.2%, Consumer Disc +0.1%, Materials 0.00%, Tech (0.04%).             


  • ADVANCE/DECLINE LINE: 678 (-478)  
  • VOLUME: NYSE 784.28 (-3.24%)
  • VIX:  15.45 -6.31% YTD PERFORMANCE: -28.74%
  • SPX PUT/CALL RATIO: 2.75 from 1.54 (+78.64%)


  • TED SPREAD: 17.30
  • 3-MONTH T-BILL YIELD: 0.14%  
  • YIELD CURVE: 2.71 from 2.72


  • CRB: 328.11 +0.40%
  • Oil: 90.48 +0.73%
  • COPPER: 427.50 -0.02%
  • GOLD: 1,387.33 +0.05%


  • EURO: 1.3087 -0.25%
  • DOLLAR: 80.727 +0.01%



  • European markets saw session highs early, the FTSE100 flirted with the 6000 level, and subsequently drifted lower in light trading.
  • Comments from a Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman that China was willing to help EuroZone countries recover from the financial crisis helped sentiment as did Greece passing its 2011 austerity budget last night.
  • Advancing sectors lead decliners 12-6 with autos and media the leading gainers whilst basic resources and construction lead fallers.
  • This is the last trading day for much of Europe ahead of the Christmas holiday with only France, Belgium, Ireland, Netherlands, Portugal and the UK open tomorrow.
  • France Nov consumer spending +2.8% m/m vs consensus +0.8%
  • France Nov PPI +0.4% m/m vs consensus +0.2%
  • UK Nov mortgage approvals for home purchase 29,991 vs prior 30,689, net mortgage lending +£1.46B vs +£1.72B, lowest since Mar and Aug 2009 respectively


  • Asian markets were mixed today; with more falling the later they were open.
  • Volumes remained low.
  • Bank stocks rose in Australia. Miners went up after the country’s Policy Transition Group made what were interpreted as favorable recommendations on the imposition of a mining tax.
  • New Zealand’s gain was limited when Q3 GDP declined (0.2%) vs consensus (0.1%). Shoe retailer Pumpkin Patch lost 1%.
  • South Korea ended flat despite tensions on the peninsula when President Lee Myung Bak promised troops the country would launch a “merciless counterattack” if North Korea attacks again.
  • Rises in retailers and property were outweighed by falls in financials, and Hong Kong reversed slim gains to finish at a loss.
  • China fell again on an end-of-year cash crunch in the financial system. Oil refiners fell on fears yesterday’s fuel price increases will raise their operating costs: Sinopec Shandong Taishan Petroleum lost 3%.
  • Japan was closed for the Emperor’s Birthday.