Daily Market Update -January 5, 2015 (Close)

US markets did reasonably well yesterday, despite a 272 point loss in the DJIA, as everything is relative.

Shanghai and Europe would have probably been happy with only about a 1.5% loss, as the US cut its own loss by about 40% as the session headed toward the close.

This morning we awoke to news that losses definitely moderated in Shanghai, but our own futures looked as if they wanted to give back what little buying there was in the final hour of yesterday’s trading and by noon it looked as if that was really going to be the case.

While there were certainly lots of losers yesterday and they seemed to be better distributed on the first day of trading than was the case through any part of 2015, today the market did what it did yesterday, as well. It was able to erase a decent portion of the day’s losses. So much so that today the market actually finished a very little bit higher.

The basic rules are still murky, though.

Where there initially appeared to be some promise on the heels of a growing Saudi and Iranian conflict, the energy sector started to give up those early gains fairly quickly during yesterday’s session.

One year to the next are often so different when comparing them on the basis of the markets even as very little may change in the world.

If you’ve been holding your breath for energy prices to rebound, yesterday’s inability to do so, even in the face of what could be some really substantive news, has to be just more disappointment.

There have been so many occasions over the past 15 months that energy looked as if it could have been a bargain and you would have been wrong each of those times, unless you were very short term oriented.

Unfortunately, in 2015, that was true of lots of stocks.

Bargains may not have really been bargains and you do have to wonder at what point 2016 will turn that tide.

I took one chance yesterday with what i thought was a bargain.

It was, though, nothing more than trying to re-establish a position that had been held in succession on 4 occasions over a 5 week period in October and December, that simply looked to be back to a fair price.

Not necessarily a bargain price, but a fair one.

That may be the theme for 2016, or at least this early and unsettled part.

I’d like to have the opportunity to re-establish positions in those stocks that I’ve repeatedly owned over the last 3 to 4 months of 2015, when otherwise my opening of new positions had been very sparse.

For 2016, I wouldn’t mind repeatedly re-inventing the wheel and not looking to far a field for what could serve as an income stream.

For today  I didn’t expect to be doing much, other than looking for some opportunities to roll over positions that may expire this or next week, in addition to any of those recurring opportunities in some familiar stocks.

Since my expectations were low, I couldn’t be overly disappointed with the outcome of sitting and watching silently.

Tomorrow will probably be more of the same.

Most of December was spent watching the ticker and not making very many trades.

January may not be very different, but it’s far too early to tell, as there are still plenty of people who hold onto the myth of those January rallies.

You never know what myths can become real, but for now, I wouldn’t mind seeing some strength in energy and a continued irrational coupling of the market in a move higher with energy.

That would at least bring one different thing into 2016 and maybe some of those other a
reas that were hit so hard in 2015 could show some strength at the expense of the handful that thrived in 2015.