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Market Commentary for August 21, 2007


An almost listless trading session today with light trading volume and light trading ranges. The Bears struggled to gain control of the NASDAQ during the early morning session but gave way to the Bulls as the morning moved on. The DOW was less fortunate whipping in and out of negative territory before giving it up, hands down to the Bears, closing in the red zone. Not much data released to create any real market movement.

At the closing bell, here is how the major indices ended the session: the DOW (Dow Jones Industrial Average) posted a loss today of 30.49 points to end the session at 13,090.86; the NYSE (New York Stock Exchange) posted a gain of 6.33 points to end the session at 9,332.54; the NASDAQ posted a gain of 12.71 points for a close at 2,521.30; the S&P 500 moved higher by 1.57 points to end at 1,447.12 and the RUSSELL 2000 moved higher by 0.93 points to close at 788.38. The FTSE All-World Index ex-US (top Large/Mid Cap aggregate from over 2,700 stocks from the FTSE Global Equity Index Series (GEIS) which covers 90% of the world’s investable market capitalization) posted a gain of 0.73 points to close at 245.72 and the FTSE RAFI 1000 posted a gain of 8.50 points to close at 6,001.78.

U.S. Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson commented today: always important to be vigilant; bad lending practices at root of problem; credit being re-priced across market; economy is increasingly complex, integrated; Fed is independent, has confidence in Fed; high quality debt markets fully operational; lifting caps on GSE’s may not help problem; markets must recalibrate risk; markets straighten themselves out over time; mulling options to cut strain on mortgage markets; no quick solution, working through issues; prime mortgage market performing well; problems in higher risk credit markets; sees strong global, U.S. economy; talks regularly with markets, regulators; turbulence this will play out over time; U.S. has healthy corporate sector; wide variety of securities are safe; will see liquidity return to normal and will take toll on growth, but economy is healthy.

Richmond Federal Reserve Bank President, Jeffery Lacker commented today: business investment should hold up well; 'encouraged' by stabilization in equity markets; expects consumer to remain 'reasonably healthy'; Fed policy must be guided by economic fundamentals; finance-related economy risks 'minor' outside of housing; inflation risk still 'relevant' but encouraging signs; jury still out on market reaction to discount rate cut; mortgage resets shouldn't affect consumer spending; recent housing data have 'dampened my optimism'; repeats preference for 1.5% annual Core PCE target; risk adjustment process not complete yet; sees U.S. growth below trend for rest of 2007; too soon to say core inflation on downward path; U.S. Labor Market is 'reasonably tight' and volatility by itself doesn't require Fed-Funds change.

Economic Data:

ICSC-UBS Store Sales: Weekly measure of comparable store sales at major retail chains which is related to the general merchandise portion of retail sales, as reported by the International Council of Shopping Centers. This date accounts for approximately 10% of total retail sales. ICSC-UBS Chain Store Sales released today: up 0.2% for week of August 18th.

Redbook: General merchandise portion of retail sales covering only approximately 10% of total retail sales, this data is a weekly measure of sales at department stores, chain stores and discounters. Redbook data released today: U.S. Retail Sales down 0.7% for first two weeks of August versus July.

State Street Investor Confidence Index: A measure of confidence created by looking at actual levels of risk in investment portfolios. Data released today: State Street Investor Confidence Index rises to 99.3 from 86.3 in August.

Commodities Markets

The trend was lower across the board again today for the Energy Sector: Light crude moved lower by $1.65 today to close at $69.47 a barrel; Heating Oil ended the session lower by $0.03 today to close at $1.97 a gallon; Natural Gas moved lower today by $0.18 to close at $6.03 per million BTU and Unleaded Gas moved lower by $0.07 today to close at $1.86 a gallon.

Metals Market ended the session mixed across the board again today: Gold moved lower today by $0.30 again to close at $666.20 an ounce; Silver closed lower today by $0.23 to close at $11.67 per ounce; Platinum moved higher today by $4.00 to close at $1,251.40 an ounce and Copper closed at $3.17 per pound.

On the Livestock and Meat Markets, the trend was mostly higher across the board today: Lean Hogs ended the day higher by 1.10 to close at 68.20; Pork Bellies ended the day higher by 1.05 to close at 93.90; Live Cattle moved higher by 0.75 to close at 96.40 and Feeder Cattle ended the day lower by 0.08 at 117.78.

Other Commodities: Corn moved higher on the day with a gain of 6.25 at 355.00 and Soybeans moved higher today for a gain of 3.75 points to end the session at 831.00.

The e-mini Dow ended the session today at 13,111 with a loss of 32 points on the trading session. The total Dow Exchange Volume for the day came in at 194,889 which are comprised of Electronic, Open Auction and Cash Exchange. Traders should review workshops available at the CBOT (Chicago Board of Trade) Educational in-person seminars schedules available on CBOT (Chicago Board of Trade) website.

Bonds were higher across the board again today: 2 year bond moved higher by 4/32 today to close at 101 3/32; 5 year bond closed higher by 6/32 at 101 20/32; 10 year bond moved higher by 9/32 again today to close at 101 7/32 and the 30 year bond moved higher by 11/32 to close at 100 25/32 for the day.

The end of day results for the CBOT (Chicago Board of Trade) which is comprised of the total Exchange Volume for Futures and Options (EVFO) including Electronic, Open Auction and Cash Exchange ended the day at 3,526,170; Open Interest for Futures moved lower by 120,617 points to close at 9,780,012; the Open Interest for Options moved higher by 98,219 points to close at 9,622,128 and the Cleared Only moved higher by 120 points to close at 7,887 for a total Open Interest on the day of 19,410,027 for a total Change on the day for a loss of 22,278 points.

On the NYSE today, advancers came in at 1,977; decliners totaled 1,282; unchanged came in at 74; new highs came in at same as yesterday of 16 and new lows came in at 55. Gainers and losers for the day as well as active day trading stocks on the NYSE: CME Group Incorporated (CME) made a nice run higher today for a gain of 16.38 points with a high on the session of $554.00, a low of $531.70 for a final trading price on the Big Board at its high of $554.00; Terra Nitrogen Company L.P. (TNH) provided nice day trading action with a gain of 7.78 points to climb higher by 10.11% with a high on the session of $85.19, a low of $77.51 for a closing price of $84.70; VMware Incorporated (VMW) continued its climb into higher territory with a gain of 15.11% to tack on 8.66 points with a high of $66.59, a low of $56.50 to close the trading session at $65.99; Dick’s Sporting Goods Incorporated (DKS) posted a favorable gain of 4.85 points with a final trading price on the session of $60.43; Cummins Incorporated (CMI) climbed higher by 3.18 points with a high of $112.90, a low of $106.50 to close the day at $110.87 and National-Oilwell Varco Incorporated (NOV) was a nice day trading stock today with a high of $113.57, a low of $108.61 with a minor loss at the close of 0.12 points for a closing price of $111.34.

On the NASDAQ today, advanced totaled 1,583; decliners totaled 1.459; unchanged came in at 138, new highs came in at 17 and new lows came in at 74. Gainers and losers for the day as well as, active day trading stocks on the NASDAQ: Apple Incorporated (AAPL) provided very nice day trading action for active traders today with a high of $128.96, a low of $121.00, with a gain of 6.28 points to close at $128.50; Adams Respiratory Therapeutics Incorporated (ARXT) fell sharply lower on the trading session to post a loss of 11.35% to shed 4.62 points with a closing price of $36.10 and Google Incorporated (GOOG) made a nice run into higher territory today to post a gain of 9.07 points with a high of $508.16, a low of $497.77 to close at $506.99.

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Millennium-Traders