WAS THE HEALTHCARE VOTE A LOT TO DO ABOUT NOTHING?

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By: Kent Engelke | Capitol Securities

The outcome on the healthcare bill is known. Broad based conclusions have been drawn about the ability to legislate the Trump agenda. I may differ from consensus, but I think the markets will not be held hostage to this bill. Tax reform will quickly move to become center stage.

In my view, there is little doubt about the Republican enthusiasm for deregulation and tax reform, the center piece of Trump’s agenda and this is what should drive the markets.

Radical thought? Why have the markets not sold substantially off in the face of potential defeat?

The first quarter is rapidly coming to an end. Will the markets begin to focus upon results? As noted many times, the ultimate driver of equity and bond prices are interest rates and earnings, both of which are influenced by macroeconomic and geopolitical events.

This week’s economic calendar is comprised of preliminary estimates of first quarter GDP, trade gap, several confidence surveys and personal income/spending data.

Last night the foreign markets were down. London was down 0.66%, Paris was down 0.26% and Frankfurt was down 0.71%. China was down 0.08%, Japan was down 1.44% and Hang Sang was down 0.68%.

The Dow should open lower on concerns that Trump’s pro-growth agenda is in jeopardy given the healthcare defeat. Will US equities rebound after the market’s opening as was the case with European shares? The 10-year is up 11/32 to yield 3.26%.

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