By Victor Reklaitis, MarketWatch
Steffen & Alexandra Sailer / ardea.com / Everett Collection
The Mueller probe turns 1 year old today, while the bull market is nearly 9 ¼ years old.
That’s if you’re aging the S&P 500’s advance from its March 2009 low, which you totally don’t have to do.
But here’s a question: Will the special counsel’s investigation end before the market’s bull run?
Probably, suggest our call of the day and quote of the day .
The call comes from financial blogger and trader ChessNwine, and the quote is from Rudy Giuliani (not exactly a neutral third party) and appears further down.
Yesterday’s all-time closing high for a key small-cap index /zigman2/quotes/210598147/delayed RUT -1.60% has some traders saying “ HOW EXCITING ” or otherwise sounding bullish. And ChessNwine is in that camp.
The fresh records for the Russell 2000 /zigman2/quotes/209961116/composite IWM -1.63% and a microcap gauge /zigman2/quotes/203365365/composite IWC -1.72% represent “the inability of bears to make any headway,” he says in his latest video at his MarketChess blog.
“Bears are really going to have to pull the rabbit out of the hat, I think, to get some downside momentum,” he adds.
The action by the little guys is a “major focal point” for investors, the MarketChess scribe also says. A big issue for bulls is whether more of the stock market will join in the party, he notes. He’s encouraged by how shares in Macy’s /zigman2/quotes/201854387/composite M +0.20% , Fiesta Restaurant Group /zigman2/quotes/204950173/composite FRGI +1.50% , Noodles & Co. /zigman2/quotes/205162517/composite NDLS +3.80% and even Crocs /zigman2/quotes/201458716/composite CROX -3.85% are behaving.
“We want to see if bulls have what it takes really to take this market and run with it — if we do broaden out. We always have to stay on our toes, stay disciplined,” ChessNwine says. “Never become sloppy or assume too much.”
Factors that have helped small caps include lower exposure to trade worries, as well as higher exposure to the recent tax cuts. And they’re not suffering as much from the dollar’s uptrend.
Go here for ChessNwine’s full video.
Key market gauges
So maybe the bears still have their fangs, as the Dow /zigman2/quotes/210598065/realtime DJIA -0.96% , S&P 500 /zigman2/quotes/210599714/realtime SPX -0.97% and Nasdaq Composite /zigman2/quotes/210598365/realtime COMP -1.15% are in the red in the early going. That’s after they finished with gains yesterday.
The 10-year Treasury yield /zigman2/quotes/211347051/realtime BX:TMUBMUSD10Y -1.00% is around 3.10%. Europe /zigman2/quotes/210599654/delayed XX:SXXP +0.23% is mostly higher, after Asia largely closed lower. Oil is gaining, while gold is losing ground. The dollar index /zigman2/quotes/210598269/delayed DXY -0.05% is up, and bitcoin /zigman2/quotes/31322028/realtime BTCUSD +0.79% has been trading around the $8,300 mark.
See the Market Snapshot column for the latest action.
The general fertility rate for American women age 15 to 44 has fallen to the lowest rate since the U.S. government began tracking it more than a century ago, according to CDC data released today.
The decline is shown in the Wall Street Journal chart above.
The federal figures also show that the number of babies born in the U.S. last year dropped to a 30-year low.