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Neutral Bias = Mixed Market Day

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Neutral Bias = Mixed Market Day

Good Morning Traders,

As of this writing 4:05 AM EST, heres what we see:

US Dollar: Dec. USD is Up at 93.270.

Energies: Jan 18 Crude is Up at 57.53.

Financials: The Mar 30 year bond is Down 11 ticks and trading at 151.27.

Indices: The Dec S&P 500 emini ES contract is 13 ticks Higher and trading at 2628.25.

Gold: The Dec gold contract is trading Down at 1283.60. Gold is 27 ticks Lower than its close.

Initial Conclusion

This is not a correlated market. The dollar is Up+ and Crude is Up+ which is not normal but the 30 year Bond is trading Lower. The Financials should always correlate with the US dollar such that if the dollar is lower then bonds should follow and vice-versa. The indices are Higher and Crude is trading Up+ which is not correlated. Gold is trading Down which is correlated with the US dollar trading Up+. I tend to believe that Gold has an inverse relationship with the US Dollar as when the US Dollar is down, Gold tends to rise in value and vice-versa. Think of it as a seesaw, when one is up the other should be down. I point this out to you to make you aware that when we dont have a correlated market, it means something is wrong. As traders you need to be aware of this and proceed with your eyes wide open.

At this hour Asia is trading mainly Lower with the exception of the Nikkei exchange which is trading Higher. As of this writing all of Europe is trading mainly Higher with the exception of the London exchange which is Lower at this hour.

Possible Challenges To Traders Today

  • Unemployment Claimsis out at 8:30 AM EST. This is major.
  • Core PCE Price Index m/mis out at 8:30 AM. Major.
  • Personal Spending m/m is out at 8:30 AM EST. This is major.
  • Personal Income m/m is out at 8:30 AM EST. Major.
  • Chicago PMIis out at 9:45 AM EST. This is major.
  • Nat Gas Storage is out at 10:30 AM EST. This is major.
  • FOMC Member Quarles Speaksat 12:30 PM EST. This is major.
  • FOMC Member Kaplan Speaks at 1 PM EST. This is major.


Weve elected to switch gears a bit and show correlation between the 30 year bond (ZB) and The YM futures contract. The YM contract is the DJIA and the purpose is to show reverse correlation between the two instruments. Remember its liken to a seesaw, when up goes up the other should go down and vice versa.

Yesterday the ZB made its move at around 10:30 PM EST. The ZB hit a Low at around that time and the YM hit a High. If you look at the charts below ZB gave a signal at around 10:30 PM EST and the YM was moving Lower at the same time. Look at the charts below and youll see a pattern for both assets. ZB hit a Low at around 10:30 AM and the YM hit a High. These charts represent the newest version of Trend Following Trades and Ive changed the timeframe to a 30 minute chart to display better. This represented a long opportunity on the 30 year bond, as a trader you could have netted about 15 ticks per contract on this trade. Each tick is worth $31.25. We added a Donchian Channel to the charts to show the signals more clearly. Please note that the front month for the ZB and the YM contract is now December, 2017.

Charts Courtesy of Trend Following Trades built on a NinjaTrader platform Click on an image to enlarge it.

ZB Dec, 2017 11/29/17

YM- Dec, 2017 11/29/17


Yesterday we gave the markets a Neutral bias as Bitcoins price exceeded $10,000 and the instruments were chaotic yesterday morning. The Dow gained 104 points however the Nasdaq and S&P both lost ground yesterday. All in all it was a mixed or neutral day. Today we arent dealing with a correlated market and our bias is to he Upside.

Could this change? Of Course. Remember anything can happen in a volatile market.


Yesterday we gave the markets a neutral bias as we felt there was much confusion due to Bitcoins exceeding the $10,000 mark. A neutral bias means the markets could go in any direction and often does. The Dow traded up by 104 points but the S&P and Nasdaq dropped. Apparently the Smart Money isnt enthused with the Tech Industry as most of them have lost revenue from prior time periods. But the Dow appears immune to this. Additionally yesterday we had fairly good economic news which helped to drive the Dow higher as well. Will that carry thru for today? Only time will tell

Just so you understand, Market Correlation is Market Direction. It attempts to determine the market direction for that day and it does so by using a unique set of tools. In fact TradersLog published an article on this subject that can be viewed at:

As readers are probably aware I dont trade equities. While were on this discussion, lets define what is meant by a good earnings report. A company must exceed their prior quarters earnings per share and must provide excellent forward guidance. Any falloff between earning per share or forward guidance will not bode well for the companys shares. This is one of the reasons I dont trade equities but prefer futures. There is no earnings reports with futures and we dont have to be concerned about lawsuits, scandals, malfeasance, etc. Anytime the market isnt correlated its giving you a clue that something isnt right and you should proceed with caution. Today our bias is to the Upside. Could this change? Of course. In a volatile market anything can happen. Well have to monitor and see.

As I write this the crude markets are Higher and the futures are trading Higher. This is not normal. Crude and the markets are now reverse correlated such that when the markets are rising, crude drops and vice-versa. Yesterday January Crude dropped to a low of $56.75 a barrel. It would appear at the present time that crude has support at $56.94 a barrel and resistance at $58.86. This could change. Well have to monitor and see. Remember that crude is the only commodity that is reflected immediately at the gas pump. Please note that the front month for crude is now January. Last December and after two years OPEC finally decided to cut production but the price of crude is still tame (as of this writing). What they havent figured out yet is that the more countries like Canada and the US produce their own crude (by whatever means) the more crude prices will fall. The move by OPEC to cut production in an attempt to pump up prices is liken to too little, too late as the world doesnt need their oil as much as they used to. Power equipment that used to need oil (Grass Trimmers, Lawn Mowers, Autos) now run on battery power and Canada and the United States are producing more of their own crude. As an update to this the non-OPEC countries have come to an agreement to unilaterally cut production across the board and this has served to temporarily raise crude prices. Well have to see if and how long this lasts

If trading crude today consider doing so after 10 AM EST when the markets gives us better direction.

Future Challenges

Much controversy is associated with this new Tax Plan and that seems that each day the markets take a different view of it. Whereas this plan is supposed to help and support the Middle Class; once you look under the covers it isnt that beneficial. Whereas mortgage interest rates are saved under this plan, it is limited to $500,000 in mortgage debt. Has anyone priced new homes these days? That limit is way too low. On the other hand it will get rid of many personal deductions that taxpayers have long been in favor of. The aspect that gets to me is this president is so willing to sign any bill regardless of the consequence just so he can say that he got something done. Has he read this bill? I have to wonder. Surely he knows that a $500,000 maximum loan amount for mortgage interest so far too low. After all, isnt he a real estate mogul himself??

TradersLog has just published an article entitled So You Think You Can Trust Your Elected Officials? That article can be viewed at:

Crude Oil Is Trading Higher

Crude oil is trading Higher and the markets are Higher. This is not normal. Crude typically makes 3 major moves (long or short) during the course of any trading day: around 9 AM EST, 11 AM EST and 2 PM EST when the crude market closes. If crude makes major moves around those time frames, then this would suggest normal trending, if not it would suggest that something is not quite right. As always watch and monitor your order flow as anything can happen in this market. This is why monitoring order flow in todays market is crucial. We as traders are faced with numerous challenges that we didnt have a few short years ago. High Frequency Trading is one of them. Im not an advocate of scalping however in a market as volatile as this scalping is an alternative to trend trading. Remember that without knowledge of order flow we as traders are risking our hard earned capital and the Smart Money will have no issue taking it from us. Regardless of whatever platform you use for trading purposes you need to make sure its monitoring order flow. Sceeto does an excellent job at this. To fully capitalize on this newsletter it is important that the reader understand how the various market correlate. More on this in subsequent editions.

Nick Mastrandrea is the author of Market Tea Leaves. Market Tea Leaves is a daily newsletter that is dedicated to your trading success. We teach and discuss market correlation. Market Tea Leaves is published daily, pre-market in the United States and can be viewed at Interested in Market Correlation? Want to learn more? Signup and receive Market Tea Leaves each day prior to market open. As a subscriber, youll also receive our daily Market Bias video that is only available to subscribers.

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About the author

Nick Mastrandrea is the author of Market Tea Leaves. Market Tea Leaves is a free, daily newsletter that discuses and teaches market correlation. Market Tea Leaves is published daily, pre-market in the United States and can be viewed at Feel free to visit and subscribe.

Nick has traded various financial instruments in his career but is currently  focused on the Futures markets. At one time Nick held a NASD Series 7 license and currently holds a Life, Health and Variable Authority.  He resides in the Princeton area of New Jersey and can be reached at or Skype: nmastran

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