U.S. equities are extending gains
U.S. equities are extending gains paced by the tech sector and the S&P 500 is on the doorstep of its 50-day m.a. again, which rests near 2,450 presently. NASDAQ is 1% higher and the blue chips are trailing at roughly 0.6% firmer. Within the Dow the top performers are Cisco +1.6%, CAT +1.6% and Apple +1.6%, while on the downside are AMEX -0.45%, P&G -0.25 and Verizon -0.2%. Much of Europe is still performing well thank in part to the weaker euro, with the Euro Stoxx 50 0.9 firmer and the German DAX +1.3%, after the ZEW shortfall appeared to extend the ECB lease on QE. The VIX equity volatility index is 10% lower near 11.88, having roamed from 12.94 highs to 11.61 lows. Some progress cited by Trump's economic team and legislators helped revive hopes for targeted tax cuts, if not full tax reform. That helped advancers lead decliners by 5-to-1, while Norway's sovereign wealth fund vowed to increase stocks by 10% to 70% of their asset mix.