Intraday Market Update
US equities are under pressure as traders return from the long holiday weekend following last week's rip higher in the major indexes. The "risk on" theme was alive and well last week after a slew of more favorable economic reports from around the globe, concluding with a better than expected non-farm payroll report on Friday that showed better than expected private sector job growth in the US. "Risk off" is the theme so far on Monday with renewed concerns of Europe's debt crises keeping further advances in check. Credit spreads on Irish and Portuguese debt hit fresh all time highs against German bonds, while the German/Greek spreads have increased to their highest levels since May. US indexes have posted solid losses so far being led by a -1.50% decline in the Russell 2000. The S&P 500, DJIA, and NASDAQ are all lower by about -0.75%. All major European equity markets closed solidly lower and the Asia-Pacific region was mixed to slightly lower. Crude oil has lost more than -1.50%, while gold has tacked on more than $8 and is approaching all time highs last seen in June near $1,265 per ounce.

Equity news and the economic calendar is light with all eyes tuned in for the release of the Federal Reserve's Beige Book tomorrow at 2:PM EST. The report is a summary of current economic conditions from all 12 Federal Reserve Districts across the US and is one of the tools used by members of the Federal Open Market Committee when crafting monetary policy. Traders will be comparing the report to late July's report which indicated that economic activity continued to increase at a modest pace in most districts, but some districts reported the level of economic activity generally held steady, while two said the pace of activity slowed.

In equities, the KBW Bank Index (BKX) is down -2.25% and is lagging which is keeping bounces in the broader market under control so far. Oracle (ORCL) has gained more then +5% after the firm announced former Hewlett-Packard CEO Mark Hurd is being named President at ORCL. Oracle's CEO Larry Ellison said Hurd did a "brilliant job" at HPQ and "there is no executive in the IT world with more relevant experience than Mark." US Steel (X), currently trading at $47.50, has risen +4% on renewed takeover chatter with rumors of multiple interested bidders with possible prices in the $60 per share range. Other steel names are also rising.

Core Sector List: Overall reading: 17 sectors advancing, 3 sectors declining
Strongest Sectors: Gold Miners, Software, Utilities
Weakest Sectors: Banks, Semi's, Oil, Coal


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