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Steady Pre-Markets Start Off Low Data Week

If the trading week ahead is a swimming pool, we’re sticking a toe in the shallow end to start it off. After an action-packed month of economic data, Q1 earnings and Fed decisions, we’ve got a lighter load in scheduled market news events. Of these, the lion’s share come toward the end of the week (the “deep end”): PCE and Durable Goods on Friday; Jobless Claims, Q1 GDP revision and Pending Home Sales Thursday.

If we’re seeing any increased activity this week, it’s in the form of Fed officers making public appearances: St. Louis’ James Bullard, San Francisco’s Mary Daly, Atlanta’s Raphael Bostic and Richmond, VA’s Tom Barkin all give talks today, which expect to make up at least some of the mindset of the monetary policy’s body, still four weeks — and several economic prints — from the next Fed decision on interest rates.

In general, last week’s positive trading series of sessions (aside from the possible re-think on Friday) were a result of “soft landing” narratives borne out by data — Q1 earnings have not been surprising to the downside, other monthly/weekly metrics were well-behaved in terms of coming down overall but nowhere near catastrophic, and the debt ceiling remained a “wait and see” proposition. We’ll see if this last continues, or if the pending deadline Treasury Secretary (and former Fed Chair) Janet Yellen cited brings a sense of urgency to proceedings related to a debt deal.

Zoom Video ZM reports earnings results after today’s close. This company is perhaps the poster child of the pandemic-era winners; now is where the rubber hits the road: is Zoom still bringing in participants to the extent its business can grow meaningfully? How about forward guidance? For a large company ($20+ billion market cap) but not a gargantuan one, this company’s earnings may punch above its weight in terms of market reaction.

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Pre-market futures have remained fairly steady this morning: the Dow is currently +20 points, the Nasdaq +10 and the S&P 500 +2. These are down slightly since this very article began, which — although we know correlation does not imply causation — may be a sign of less bullish activity in the minutes and hours to come, but it still points to an overall positive market sentiment, one which we enjoyed for much of last week.

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