NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- The day has finally arrived with the release of U.S. nonfarm payrolls out Friday morning.
The nonfarm employment data ended up barely beating expectations, 175,000 vs. a predicted 170,000 additional jobs in May. The number represents an expected gradual improvement in the economy, many months away from self-sustainment. The U.S. dollar shot higher on the news and equities advanced as well. With the expectation that the Federal Reserve will keep a safety net below financial markets, investors see the ability for the economy to pick up on its own terms, without being rushed by a diminishing time frame of monetary support.
A few simple words uttered by Ben Bernanke last week regarding the longevity of monetary stimulus has set off a firestorm of volatility across world markets.
Japanese markets took the statement as a cue to begin a much needed correction after an exponential run up over the preceding months. The yen gained strength and the Nikkei index sold off with conviction.U.S. markets were similarly battered down by rising rates and volatility that had been largely absent throughout 2013. Fed officials have come out recently and made the case that markets are overreacting, and any monetary tightening is many months away. Regardless of the hard facts, investors were cautious leading into employment data on Friday.
There has been a constant changing of minds on whether buying on dips is the right call. However, world markets continue to move forward regardless of the situation, and by taking a macro perspective, attractive assets can always be found. The first indicator of interest is DB USD Index Bullish (UUP) over CurrencyShares Japanese Yen Trust (FXY). This is a proven volatility measure, and has pulled back accordingly, as market fear has heightened. Fear has overtaken markets to the point of jeopardizing the BOJ's monetary efforts. The stronger yen has broken its intermediate trend line and continued to push lower this week. As long as the market remains uncertain over the future value of the dollar, the yen will show strength. The next pair is of Barclays Capital High Yield Bond ETF (JNK) over Barclays 7-10 Year Treasury Bond Fund (IEF). This pair measures economic sentiment, and investor outlook on financial markets. A bullish point of view advocates for lower rates and an economic background that supports lower-grade companies. The simulative environment we have been involved in has pushed junk debt higher, but as rates have risen, the search for yield has fallen.
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