Weekly Market News for the Week of July 27, 2009

Presented by Mark Lund

Quote of the week. “The softest things in the world overcome the hardest things in the world.” – Lao-Tzu

Is real estate recovering? Existing home sales are up for the third straight month. The National Association of Realtors had residential resales up by 3.6% in June – 0.2% under last year’s pace, but still an encouraging sign. Prices are a motivation – nationally, the median existing home sale price was $181,800 last month.1

Gas guzzler round-up gets underway. The federal government’s CARS program (informally known as “cash for clunkers”) officially began over the weekend, with $3,500/$4,500 credits available to new car buyers who drive in 1984-or-newer autos that average 18 MPG or less. The program will run until November 1 or until the $1 billion in federal rebates run out. You can visit cars.gov to determine whether you have a qualifying vehicle.2

Oil & gold have a good week. Crude oil futures gained 5.37% last week to finish at $68.05 per barrel on the NYMEX Friday. In the latest AAA gas prices survey, a gallon of regular unleaded averaged $2.470 nationally as opposed to $4.026 a year before. (However, gasoline futures gained 8.25% last week.) Gold settled at $953.10 per ounce Friday, wrapping up a 1.66% weekly gain.3

Indication of hope. Could the recession have ended already? The Conference Board’s index of leading economic indicators increased 0.7% for June (the third consecutive monthly gain, marking the best performance since January 2002, which was two months after the conclusion of the last recession). The coincident-to-lagging indicators in the index also increased for the third month in a row.4

9,000 … 2,000? … 1,000? The Dow topped 9,000 last week, and the NASDAQ and S&P 500 may surpass the 2,000 and 1,000 benchmarks if the rally continues. The NASDAQ lost ground Friday to end a 12-session win streak and close the week at 1,965.96. The S&P 500 stood at 979.26 at Friday’s close; the Dow ended Friday’s market day at 9,093.24.5

% Change


1-Yr Avg

5-Yr Avg

10-Yr Avg











S&P 500










(Source: CNNMoney.com, ustreas.gov, treasurydirect.gov, bls.gov, 7/24/09)6,7,8,9

Indices are unmanaged, do not incur fees or expenses, and cannot be invested into directly. These returns do not include dividends.

Riddle of the week. What can fill a room, yet takes up no physical space?

Contact my office or see next week’s Update for the answer.

Last week’s riddle answer: 12 times; 12 X $2 = $24. The coin came up tails the remaining 8 times; 8 x $3 = $24. So they were all even after 20 coin flips.

These views are not the views of Sammons Securities Company, LLC, and should not be construed as investment advice. The Dow Jones Industrial Average is a price-weighted index of 30 actively traded blue-chip stocks. The NASDAQ Composite Index is an unmanaged, market-weighted index of all over-the-counter common stocks traded on the National Association of Securities Dealers Automated Quotation System. The Standard & Poor’s 500 (S&P 500) is an unmanaged group of securities considered to be representative of the stock market in general. It is not possible to invest directly in an index. NYSE Group, Inc. (NYSE:NYX) operates two securities exchanges: the New York Stock Exchange (the “NYSE”) and NYSE Arca (formerly known as the Archipelago Exchange, or ArcaEx®, and the Pacific Exchange). NYSE Group is a leading provider of securities listing, trading and market data products and services. The New York Mercantile Exchange, Inc. (NYMEX) is the world’s largest physical commodity futures exchange and the preeminent trading forum for energy and precious metals, with trading conducted through two divisions – the NYMEX Division, home to the energy, platinum, and palladium markets, and the COMEX Division, on which all other metals trade. All information is believed to be from reliable sources; however we make no representation as to its completeness or accuracy. All economic and performance data is historical and not indicative of future results. The market indices discussed are unmanaged. Investors cannot invest in unmanaged indices. The publisher is not engaged in rendering legal, accounting or other professional services. If other expert assistance is needed, the reader is advised to engage the services of a competent professional. Please consult your Financial Advisor for further information. Additional risks are associated with international investing, such as currency fluctuations, political and economic instability and differences in accounting standards.

1 news.bostonherald.com/business/real_estate/view/20090723existing-home_sales_show_promise/srvc=home&position=recent                [7/23/09]
2 latimes.com/business/la-fi-clunkers25-2009jul25,0,4520824.story [7/2409]
3 cnbc.com/id/32130526/page/2/       [7/24/09]
4 bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601087&sid=aHisOoFaeD.U               [7/22/09]
5  cnbc.com/id/32129064     [7/24/09]
6  money.cnn.com/data/markets/dow/              [7/24/09]
6  money.cnn.com/data/markets/nasdaq/        [7/24/09]
6 money.cnn.com/data/markets/sandp/?         [7/24/09]
6 money.cnn.com/quote/historical/historical.html?pg=hi&close_date=7%2F24%2F08&mode=add&symb=DJIA                                [7/24/09]
6 money.cnn.com/quote/historical/historical.html?pg=hi&close_date=7%2F23%2F04&mode=add&symb=DJIA [7/24/09]
6 money.cnn.com/quote/historical/historical.html?pg=hi&close_date=7%2F23%2F99&mode=add&symb=DJIA [7/24/09]
6 money.cnn.com/quote/historical/historical.html?pg=hi&close_date=7%2F24%2F08&mode=add&symb=COMP              [7/24/09]
6 money.cnn.com/quote/historical/historical.html?pg=hi&close_date=7%2F23%2F04&mode=add&symb=COMP              [7/24/09]
6 money.cnn.com/quote/historical/historical.html?pg=hi&close_date=7%2F23%2F99&mode=add&symb=COMP               [7/24/09]
6 money.cnn.com/quote/historical/historical.html?pg=hi&close_date=7%2F24%2F08&mode=add&symb=SPX                  [7/24/09]
6 money.cnn.com/quote/historical/historical.html?pg=hi&close_date=7%2F23%2F04&mode=add&symb=SPX                  [7/24/09]
6 money.cnn.com/quote/historical/historical.html?pg=hi&close_date=7%2F23%2F99&mode=add&symb=SPX  [7/24/09]
7 ustreas.gov/offices/domestic-finance/debt-management/interest-rate/real_yield_historical.shtml [7/24/09]
8 treasurydirect.gov/RI/OFAuctions  [7/24/09]
9 bls.gov/news.release/history/cpi_08171999.txt            [8/17/99]