By Sunny Oh
U.S. financial markets are closed on Monday, Feb. 17, in observance of Presidents Day.
The New York Stock Exchange and Nasdaq are shut down, and the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association, or Sifma, is recommending no trading in dollar-denominated debt, which includes money markets and U.S. Treasurys.
The holiday will provide a respite for traders who have seen stocks and bond yields continue to diverge. The S&P 500 (S&P:SPX) and Dow Jones Industrial Average (DOW:DJIA) were both less than a percentage point away from their respective record closes on Friday, while the 10-year Treasury note yield (XTUP:BX:TMUBMUSD10Y) traded around 1.59% at last check.
Trading in futures and options on CME Group exchanges will also be halted on Monday. That means there will be no settlements for gold futures (NYM:GC00) or crude-oil futures (NYM:CL00) .
Presidents Day was established in 1885 to commemorate the birthday of George Washington, the first president of the United States. But the federal holiday is now viewed as a day to honor all U.S. presidents.
It became popularly known as Presidents Day after the Uniform Monday Holiday Act of 1971, a legislative effort to create three-day weekends. Presidents Day now falls on the third Monday in February, even though Washington’s birthday itself is Feb. 22.