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Trading Diary: Friday’s yawn-inducing stock market action

Written By | Mar 10, 2017

Edgar Degas’ yawning 19th century laundry lady pretty much sums up today’s stock market action. (Image via Wikipedia)

WASHINGTON, March 10, 2017 – Snow flurries swirl outside our window on this gloomy day, probably signaling the outer edge of a nor’easter that’s supposed to whack the Atlantic seaboard north of DC this weekend. We’ve been lucky here this winter as global warming climate changed made a furtive appearance this year, at least in the mid-Atlantic section of the U.S., after at least a 10 year hiatus. (Our new EPA Director knows this.)

But it’s sure cold today, and that’s what portfolios are feeling like as well. It’s a bit like dealing with a hangover—in this case, a hangover from the massive Trump Rally, which may or may not have played itself out at this point. Stocks are certainly giving us the feeling that they’re too pooped to participate.

What to do, what to do with our stagnating portfolios?

Trading Diary

After unloading a batch of stocks yesterday for a net profit, we’re holding today. As of 2:45 Friday afternoon, we haven’t been persuaded to do any buying or selling, even in our beleaguered precious metals mining shares, Newmont Mining (symbol: NEM) and Silver Wheaton (SLW).

Read also: Good news on jobs means bad news on interest rates

The downward pressure on gold and silver and the companies that mine these metals has been unrelenting due to that likely Fed interest rate hike next week, and what such an action usually does to stocks to this sector. But, on the other hand, it’s probably time for at least a little bounce. Ditto the markets, although the bounce doesn’t look like it’s happening today.

So, lacking any further news to make us more optimistic or pessimistic, we’re regarding the market’s recent downdraft as an event that has encouraged us to take profits where we can while dumping a few marginal losers for a better-than-average capital gain over all.

But, again, we’re not too eager—yet—to put our growing cash pile back to work. We can’t help thinking there may be a few more markdowns left before the market decides to relieve its current badly oversold condition—big time. Maybe sometime between Monday and Wednesday of next week. Stay tuned.

Terry Ponick

Biographical Note: Dateline Award-winning music and theater critic for The Connection Newspapers and the Reston-Fairfax Times, Terry was the music critic for the Washington Times print edition (1994-2010) and online Communities (2010-2014). Since 2014, he has been the Senior Business and Entertainment Editor for Communities Digital News (CDN). A former stockbroker and a writer and editor with many interests, he served as editor under contract from the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) and continues to write on science and business topics. He is a graduate of Georgetown University (BA, MA) and the University of South Carolina where he was awarded a Ph.D. in English and American Literature and co-founded one of the earliest Writing Labs in the country. Twitter: @terryp17