Markets erased early losses after the Fed's FOMC minutes revealed that members were more open to easy monetary policy.
First the scoreboard:
And now the top stories:
- We got some mixed reads on the U.S. housing markets this morning. According to the National Association of Realtors, existing home sales grew at an annualized rate of just 2.3 percent to 4.47 million units in July. Economists were looking for a 3.2 percent growth rate.
- Despite the slower than expected reading, economists seemed to be happy that the direction continues to be up. " The rebound comes after a weak June print, even as the below-consensus uptick suggests that the ongoing housing recovery continues to run at a gradual pace," said Gennadiy Goldberg of TD Securities.
- The message from homebuilder Toll Brothers was decidedly more bullish. After announcing better-than-expected quarterly earnings, CEO Douglas Yearley said, "We are enjoying the most sustained demand we've experienced in over five years."
- At 2:00, the Federal Reserve released the minutes of its August FOMC meeting. Here's the dovish sentence that likely caused a mid-day rally in stocks: "Many members judged that additional monetary accommodation would likely be warranted fairly soon unless incoming information pointed to a substantial and sustainable strengthening in the pace of the economic recovery."
- Sentiment continues to deteriorate among the market strategists. Nomura's Andy Chaytor, Kevin Gaynor, and Bob Janjuah have a new note just out titled Time To Set Risk-Off Trades. And the title speaks for itself. Uber-bear Richard Russell thinks "something evil and bearish is bubbling in the guts of this market."
- Global tech giant Hewlett-Packard reports their quarterly results after the closing bell today. Follow the announcement LIVE at Business Insider.
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