Skip to main content

As the short week, month, and quarter drew to a close, Thursday’s session for the S&P 500 index futures presented good news and “good” news. The good news for the bulls is the psychological 5300 level was comfortably defended and a new all-time closing high was made (only just), and the “good” news for the bears is that any intraday rallies were sold.

Early morning economic news had the second revision of Q4’s GDP coming in within expectations (3.2%) and last week’s initial jobless claims slightly above expectations (214,000 vs. 210,000 exp.). This offered the bulls some slight momentum when the news was released at 8:30am EST, yet the day’s potential was tempered by anticipation of significant economic announcements set for the holiday Friday. By the open, the index futures were in the positive, but not by much.

Throughout the day, attempts to establish a bid above the previous session’s high were thwarted, leading to a gradual pullback in the afternoon. Despite this, the bulls managed a resurgence, pushing the index futures to new daily and weekly highs in the final hours. However, the theme of late-day sell offs returned in the final half hour which erased a 10+ handle gain to finish the day only slightly higher by 0.25 handles to close at 5308.50.

Today’s scratch gain also makes for a new all-time closing high, a positive week and quarter. For the week, that’s a 0.29% or 15.25 handle gain, and for the quarter, a total gain of 10.13% or 488.50 handles for the front month contract.

Among the top components of the index, Berkshire Hathaway Inc Class B (NYSE: BRK.B) emerged as the biggest gainer. The issue was able to advance by $3.59 or 0.86% to close at $420.52 for the day.

That performance was slightly better than the cash index’s decline of 0.02%.

The biggest loser ended up being Tesla Inc (NASDAQ: TSLA), as investors sold news of weak Q1 sales in China and subsequent analyst price target cuts. For the day, the issue declined by $4.04 or 2.25% to close at $175.79.


PreMarket Prep’s “The Closing Print” With Dennis Dick (Co-Founder of PreMarket Prep)