Exhausted equity bulls look set to take a breather on Friday.
Who can blame them after a week filled with dovish slants from central banks, notably the Fed, that produced a fresh S&P 500 record. But stay alert for one more distraction. Stock-index futures, stock-index options, single-stock futures, and stock options will all expire simultaneously today, an event known as quadruple witching, that happens every quarter on the third Friday of the last month.
That can trigger volatility in the last hour of trading, but sometimes into the next week when it has coincided with an average loss of 1.09% for the Dow in 25 of the last 29 years, according to Jeff Hirsch, editor of the Stock Trader’s Almanac.
Away from equities, another herd of bulls are panting this morning. In the wee hours of Friday, gold GCQ19, +0.29% reached a fresh 2013 high of $1,415 an ounce, which was met pretty quickly by sellers. Gold has been on a monster run since the Federal Reserve hinted Wednesday that it could cut interest rates in the coming months.
As gold is seen as a defensive play, while it doesn’t pay a dividend or interest, it’s more appealing as an alternative lower-risk asset to hold when interest rates are low and investors are turned off by bonds.
That brings us to our call of the day from Citigroup analysts who say this “bullish gold fever is justified,” and say the metal could reach between $1,500 to $1,600 an ounce in the next 12 months, and $1,500 by end-2019...