U.S. STOCK MARKET STILL UPBEAT


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Yes, the markets are riding high again. Investors see the prospect of a U.S.-China trade deal and relatively strong earnings reports from major companies, as good omens that stock prices will continue to rise.
Also, the percentage of stocks in the S&P 500 that are trading above their 200-day moving average – a key indicator – approached the peak set two years ago.  Several stocks reaching their highest 12-month price have also buoyed investors’ hopes, as does last year’s stock performance, when prices rose despite stagnant earnings.
Worries of a recession or serious stall in global growth are receding among analysts.
According to David Solomon, CEO of Goldman Sachs, “The highest most likely outcome is we have a relatively benign economic environment in 2020.”
TREND FORECAST: Minus a wild card/black swan event, we maintain our forecast for slowing economic growth that will, in turn, spur the Federal Reserve to lower interest rates.  
The United States and its Middle East allies, however, are ramping up war pressure against Iran.  
And, as evidenced by President Trump featuring Juan Guaidó, the self-proclaimed president of Venezuela, at his State of the Union address on Tuesday, the administration is clearly aiming to take down Nicolas Maduro, the duly elected president of Venezuela’s government.  
Should tensions increase and military confrontations escalate among these and other nations and Brent Crude oil rises above $90 per barrel, we forecast that global equities and economies will crash.

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