Cyprus is on our mind Tuesday, with the indiscriminate tax being levied on depositors of the island nation. The Greek relative issue rightly stopped stocks Monday, as it is an illegal and forced stealing of the hard earned capital put away in savings accounts alongside with the illegal capital the irresponsible Europeans are seeking to penalize. We’ll have more to say about the issue today, so stay tuned. The SPDR S&P 500 (NYSE: SPY), SPDR Dow Jones Industrial Average (NYSE: DIA) and the PowerShares QQQ (Nasdaq: QQQ) all declined on the day as the SPDR Gold Trust (NYSE: GLD) gained ground.
The latest Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meeting begins Tuesday, but the monetary policy statement won’t come until Wednesday. A Bank of Japan (BOJ) governor is set to retire today, with his replacement being more dovish. The media should have some interest in the change. The OECD publishes its economic survey, which might serve as a wake-up call, though I do not think for the U.S. A Senate committee will take a look at the American Airlines / U.S. Airways (NYSE: LCC) merger. Another panel will consider President Obama’s trade plans.
Housing Starts will be reported for February at 8:30 AM ET. Economists are looking for an improvement this month, with the consensus forecast set for an annual pace of 919K, versus the 890K pace reported in January. Permits are expected to run at the same pace of 925K this month. If the report comes in as expected, or even a little less robust, it should be enough to keep faith in the housing recovery alive and well. I don’t see any reason to expect otherwise.
The latest retailer same-store sales data comes to the wire in the premarket Tuesday. Last week’s data covering the period ending March 9 showed a week-to-week improvement of 0.7%, versus the 0.2% increase the week before. The year-to-year gain of 1.8% matched the prior week result. Redbook had the year-to-year change at plus 2.7%, versus the prior week’s gain of 2.2%. It was a good week, and investors will be hopeful of healthy numbers this week as well.
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