Stocks were set for a mild start here on Wednesday morning but then dropped suddenly on a surge in interest rates that took the iShares 20+ Year Treasury Bond ETF (TLT) to its lowest point since March. Recent spikes in bond yields have been causing some concerns about inflationary pressures, but higher rates are a function of an improving economy and that is what we are seeing.
Early action was sluggish, but Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell is doing the same thing he did on Tuesday and is providing some market confidence as he testifies in front of Congress. Powell is soothing concerns about inflation and is quick to assure us the Fed will stay accommodative for a very long time.
Breadth is running about 4,500 gainers to 3,100 decliners, there are a good amount of stocks trading up more than 10%, and there are more than 550 new 12-month highs. The FATMAAN names and Nasdaq 100 are so-so, while the Russell 2000 was leading with a gain of 1.75% in late-morning trading.
This is stock-picking action again. However, it isn't quite as energetic as we have experienced in the last couple weeks. My favorite theme right now is gambling, with stocks such as Elys Game Technology (ELYS) and Esports Entertainment Group (GMBL) on my radar.
One group I've added to here on Wednesday is silver. My technical pick today was First Majestic Silver (AG) , and I'll be looking to build that further.
The market has calmed down nicely and I expect to see better stock picking as the day progresses.