Durable Goods Orders and New Home Sales At 8:30 this morning durable goods orders for November were released. Durable goods include objects such as cars, furniture, and appliances. Month over month there was a 0.0% change in durable goods orders, showing that there was no growth. In November the Federal Reserve stated that they were data dependent when considering raising interest rates. The Federal Reserve raised interest rates in December because they have confidence in the economy and believe it is going to grow. The durable goods orders number is troubling as in a growing economy it should be increasing each month. At 10:00 the new home sales for November were released. New home sales came in at 490 thousand, lower than the consensus 503 thousand. Both of these numbers do not signal a growing economy. I do not see these numbers improving in 2016. The Federal Reserve decided to wait seven years before they raised interest rates from 0%. Normally when interest rates are raised it is early in the cycle of a recovery, not seven years later. I believe the Federal Reserve decided to raise interest rates in December because they wanted to show that they see the economy gaining momentum. The weak economic numbers released yesterday and today are not showing strength in the economy. Dow Jones Industrial Average and the U.S. Equity Markets On Friday of last week and Monday of this week I stated that I was bullish the Dow Jones Industrial Average. The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed up 123 points Monday, 165 points Tuesday, and 185 points today. This is a gain of over 450 points in three business days. There are only 5 more business days left in the year. Since the beginning of the year I stated that I expected the NASDAQ to outperform. As of today’s close year to date the NASDAQ is up over 6% and the S&P 500 is up about 0.2%. At the beginning of the year I stated that I expected the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Russell 2000 to lag. As of today’s close year to date the Dow Jones Industrial Average is down about 1.2% and the Russell 2000 is down about 4%. I expect the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the Russell 2000 to either be slightly down or inch into single digit positive territory by years end. If I was a long term investor and I owned mutual funds, exchange traded funds, and/or individual stocks I would look to sell and be 100% in cash if the Dow Jones Industrial Average gets into the 17800-18400 range. I would then wait for good opportunities to reenter in 2016. I believe there is a slowdown coming. People are talking about a recession. I do not see it just yet. I expect a lot of volatility going into 2016, and I think that the volatility could get pretty nasty at some points during 2016. Crude Oil I stated that I was more bullish crude oil than bearish. Today the crude oil inventories were released, showing a decrease of 5.9 million barrels from the prior week. This is the largest decrease in crude oil inventories since June. Crude oil shot up, closing up about 1.40 dollars. I would look to buy crude oil if it pulls into the 33.50-36 range. I am looking for one more pull back for what I think could be a nice trade on the long side. As I stated yesterday crude oil is very oversold on the weekly chart and is starting to turn up on the daily chart. Gold Gold was down about 2 dollars today, closing near the 1070 level. Gold has closed down yesterday and today after rallying from the 1050 level to the 1080 level on Friday and Monday. Gold is holding above the big 1040 number. We are seeing gold start to catch a bid here. After the weak economic numbers yesterday and today the gold bugs are thinking that there is no way the Federal Reserve is going to raise interest rates in the first quarter and possibly even the second quarter of 2016. I would look to buy gold if it gets into the 1048-1058 range with a 1035-1038 stop. With five business days left in the year I am hoping this pattern sets up on the daily charts. I would only be looking to buy gold for a short lived trade, lasting 3-5 business days. I still have sell signals for gold on both the daily and weekly charts; however I do see a positive divergence between the daily and weekly charts.