In recent years, a common occurrence in this market has been the joyless rally. Although the action is quite strong by most any measure, there isn't any real excitement behind the green screens. Instead of celebration of good gains, there is grumbling about not keeping pace with the indices. Market players may not be losing money, but they are frustrated that they aren't doing better.
A good illustration of what is causing this frustration is a comment by Goldman Sachs this morning that only 16% of large-cap mutual funds are beating their benchmark indices, year to date. When the market runs up like it is today, those managers often lag even more.
Part of this is caused by computerized trading, but another big part of it is that standard technical analysis hasn't worked as well. As I discussed, the indices had clear negative patterns going into the Fed news but they had no predictive value. The central banks consistently undermine the standard patterns and put many folks in the position of struggling to make up relative performance.
The feeling that there isn't any real basis for strength and that the buying is a function of financial engineering rather than strong fundamentals also feeds into this lack of celebration. Buyers are holding their nose and buying not out of great conviction but because they have no other choice.