Today brings the release of the FOMC minutes; investors will be scrutinizing the report before leaving for the long weekend.

Yesterday FOMC members Charles Plosser and William Dudley spoke on the status of the economy. Plosser, a known hawk at the Fed, said rising inflation and strengthening economy may force the Fed to hike rates "sooner rather than later" to stay ahead of inflation. This drove an already weak market into a further decline through the afternoon.

SPY did come off the low of the day (187.07) to close at 187.55, down -.63% from the previous day. The six month chart is shown below:

SPY 6 month Chart:



The June Iron Condor position is shown below:

SPY June Iron Condor



The position weathered yesterday's drop fairly well; it is currently +$9.47, still positive delta so would benefit from a "slight" rally.

As of this writing futures are up slightly. This afternoon's release of the minutes could bring some volatility to the market, so the position will be monitored closely. Volume will likely be extremely low after the minutes are digested; many investors will be leaving for the long Holiday weekend.

The plan remains in place to keep the position open as long as SPY stays between the short strikes. The position will be exited at target gain (10%), max loss (15%), or either short strike.

The economic news for the rest of the week and into the weekend is below:

Thursday, May 22

- Weekly Jobless Claims

- Existing Home Sales

- European Parliamentary elections begin

- China HSBC Flash Manufacturing PMI

Friday, May 23

- New Home Sales

Sunday, May 25

- European elections conclude

- Ukraine presidential election

Monday, May 26

- U.S. Markets closed for Memorial Day

For those of you that follow or trade the SPX weekly credit spread, you have seen how the whipsaw conditions we have seen so frequently make this a very challenging environment for short term traders.

With the market being closed on Monday and all the overseas news over the weekend, I do not feel comfortable recommending a new weekly position for the May 5 cycle. Russia has promised not to interfere with the Ukraine elections, however, they do plan a massive military drill on the Ukraine border the day of the elections so anything could happen. In my opinion, this is a time for weekly traders to practice patience; the trades will resume when I feel it is a better time to jump back in. I am waiting for a clearer market direction before risking capital in a short term position.

As always, trade carefully and stay keen on your risk management,

Dot Hazlin