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Wall Street: US equity markets surge on bullish momentum; eyes on retail sales report for December

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US equity markets surge on Fed rate cut expectations; Nasdaq up 3.23%. Mixed bank earnings reactions. Focus on December retail sales report and Fed speeches this week.


 Tony Sycamore | Market Analyst, Australia | Publication date: 

US equity markets rediscovered their bull market mojo last week, supported by increasingly aggressive expectations of Fed rate cuts. The Nasdaq surged 3.23% for the week, while the S&P 500 added 1.84%, and the Dow Jones finished 0.34% higher.

Following Friday night's softer-than-expected PPI data (-0.1% vs 0.1% exp), two-year yields dived to finish 23 basis points (bp) lower at 4.15%. There is now an 80% chance of a Fed rate cut priced for March, and a total of 167 bp of rate cuts priced for 2024.

Friday night's bank earnings reports received a mixed reception. Wells Fargo (-3.34%), Bank of America (-1.06%) and JP Morgan (-0.73%). While Citigroup climbed 1.04% to $52.62 on the news, it will trim its workforce by 10% to boost returns. US Q4 earnings season continues this week, with reports scheduled from companies including Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, Interactive Brokers, Charles Schwab, and Alcoa.


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Aside from earnings reports, there will be interest in the latest retail sales report for December, the Michigan consumer sentiment for January and speeches from Fed members, including Waller, Williams, Barr, Daly, and Bostic - who may attempt to push back on expectations of rate cuts in March.

What is expected from the December retail sales report? (Thursday 12.30 am AEST)

Following a gain of 0.3% MoM in November, the market is looking for retail sales to gain 0.3% in December. Retail sales, excluding volatile motor vehicles and parts are expected to increase by a subdued 0.2% MoM.

S&P 500 technical analysis

While the S&P 500 cash made a marginal new high last week, the view remains that the advance from the October low is in the terminal stages based on our Elliott Wave count and bearish RSI divergence.

As such, we remain neutral/cautious at current levels, watching for a break of support at 4675 (just below last week's lows), which would warn that a deeper pullback towards support at 4600/4550 is underway.

S&P 500 daily chart


original-size.webpSource: TradingView

Nasdaq technical analysis

The Nasdaq followed the road map to perfection during the second half of 2023, bottoming as expected in the 14,200/14,000 support zone before a stunning rebound to new highs.

The updated view is that the advance from the October low is in the terminal stages based on our Elliott Wave count, and as such, we remain neutral/cautious at current levels. A sustained break below support at 15,900/15,800 would warn that a deeper pullback initially towards the 200-day moving average at 15,000 is underway.

Nasdaq daily chart


original-size.webpSource: TradingView

  • Source: TradingView. The figures stated are as of 15 January 2023. Past performance is not a reliable indicator of future performance. This report does not contain and is not to be taken as containing any financial product advice or financial product recommendation.



This information has been prepared by IG, a trading name of IG Australia Pty Ltd. In addition to the disclaimer below, the material on this page does not contain a record of our trading prices, or an offer of, or solicitation for, a transaction in any financial instrument. IG accepts no responsibility for any use that may be made of these comments and for any consequences that result. No representation or warranty is given as to the accuracy or completeness of this information. Consequently any person acting on it does so entirely at their own risk. Any research provided does not have regard to the specific investment objectives, financial situation and needs of any specific person who may receive it. It has not been prepared in accordance with legal requirements designed to promote the independence of investment research and as such is considered to be a marketing communication. Although we are not specifically constrained from dealing ahead of our recommendations we do not seek to take advantage of them before they are provided to our clients.

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