‘We can overcome’ continues to be the market message over the past week as Japan, the Middle East, rising energy prices (amongst others), and more moderate than expected Q1 growth aren’t proving to be any sort of roadblock. I believe this gets put to the proper test starting one week from Monday when Alcoa starts Q1 earnings releases because we’ll hear from the horses mouth the impact of higher raw material costs and the major disruption in the economic activities of the 3rd largest economy in the world will have both on profit margins and production. In the meantime, jobs data over the next three days and the ISM mfr’g figure will be a great snapshot of the state of things. The yen is down for a 4th day and has lost all of what it gained post earthquake and the Nikkei is at a 2 1/2 week high. Economic confidence in the EuroZone was a touch below expectations and fell slightly from the highest level since Aug ’07.
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