Bears Start The Year By Getting Thrashed: Here's What You Need To Know

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An unhappy return to the market for the bears: 2011 has started just like 2010 ended, with some ugly thrashing.But first, the scoreboard:

Dow: 91.84
NASDAQ: 37.24
S&P 500: 13.89

And now, the top stories:

  • This first trading day of 2011 actually got started this weekend, when China reported a softish PMI report. It didn’t affect anything. Shanghai was closed, but the Hang Seng was open, and it rallied, and that extended into the European day, which saw its own series of lights-out PMI reports. Europe is recovering.
  • US futures were clearly heading higher from the early hours of the day. At 10:00 AM, we got two big pieces of economic data, and they were mostly good. The ISM grew in December from November, thought it may have been a little shy of some estimates. Construction spending beat estimates, and also a key internal measure of the ISM improved.
  • From there, stocks were basically off to the races on a day that felt very Decemberish with US stocks gaining, oil rallying, and gold sliding. In the end, it’s worth noting, stocks didn’t close at their highs of the day.
  • The big winner of the new year so far are the financials. Bank of America, which had a great December, gained really big after announcing a putback settlement with Fannie and Freddie. Other financials rallied as well.
  • Click here for a guide to the 6 big economic themes for 2011 >

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