This Day On The Street
Continue to site
ADVERTISEMENT
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here

Market Preview: Hitting Pause

Updated from 5:58 p.m. ET to include after-hours trading action.

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- The orderly rally of 2012 seems to be giving way to an equally polite sell-off.

The theory for a while now has been that stocks were just waiting for a reason to pull back. Well, it would be difficult to find a riper reason than the weak employment report that arrived Friday yet Monday's low-volume selling never reached anything near panic proportions.

That said, all three major U.S. equity indices are now the proud owners of four-day losing streaks, and the damage is starting to add up. The Dow Jones Industrial Average, for example, is off nearly 335 points, or 2.5%, in that stretch.

That marks the blue-chip index's largest four-day points decline since mid-December when this latest bull run was still finding its footing, according to data complied by Dow Jones Indexes. The S&P 500 has given back 2.6%, and the Nasdaq has surrendered 2.3% over the same period. At the very least, the pause button has been hit, but even the bulls would probably like to see a deeper drop with heavier volume to better establish a level to rally further from.

The problem (of sorts) though is that real fear still seems to be a ways away.

Consider that much of the commentary around the shortfall in job creation last month was inclined to view the miss against the larger backdrop of the progress made over the last few months, rather than a sign of more weakness to come. UBS, for example, is still on board with the view that the slow recovery remains intact.

"Smoothing through the monthly volatility there has been net improvement in payrolls this year," the firm said Monday. "In the first quarter, payrolls have gained 212k per month on average, up from 152k per month in 2011. The pace so far this year is more than strong enough to keep the unemployment rate declining. Healthy bank lending should help support a solid trend in payrolls. We still expect a 200k trend in private-sector job growth in coming months."

Then there's the argument that the jobs number disappointment just increases the likelihood that the Federal Reserve will need to come through with more stimulus, so that may be luring some cash off the sidelines.
1 of 5

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Action Alerts PLUS

Portfolio Manager Jim Cramer and Director of Research Jack Mohr reveal their investment tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Quant Ratings

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
Stocks Under $10

David Peltier uncovers low dollar stocks with serious upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
14-Days Free
Only $9.95
14-Days Free
Dividend Stock Advisor

David Peltier identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Trifecta Stocks

Every recommendation goes through 3 layers of intense scrutiny—quantitative, fundamental and technical analysis—to maximize profit potential and minimize risk.

Product Features:
  • Model Portfolio
  • Intra Day Trade alerts
  • Access to Quant Ratings
Options Profits

Our options trading pros provide over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • Actionable options commentary and news
  • Real-time trading community
SYM TRADE IT LAST %CHG
AAPL $109.85 -2.60%
AA $9.45 0.00%
HLIT $5.77 0.00%
SVU $8.24 0.00%
VVUS $1.13 0.00%

Markets

Chart of I:DJI
DOW 16,528.03 -114.98 -0.69%
S&P 500 1,972.18 -16.69 -0.84%
NASDAQ 4,776.5080 -51.8170 -1.07%

Free Reports

Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs