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Stocks End Seven Straight Months Of Gains With A Whimper

On the last day of a stellar August for stocks, a month which saw 12 all time highs in a year where stocks have already hit new records no less than 53 times and are on pace for a record number of records, investors were wondering if we would see a lucky 13 on the last day of the month, and while stocks pushed sharply higher overnight, they failed to maintain the momentum into the close, which saw the Emini close just fractionally in the red – despite a another ramp in the last minute of trading – as the now traditional leadership from the Nasdaq was missing following lackluster performance from the FAAMGs.

In a day that may have seen up to $13 billion in pension month-end selling, the broader market suffered from weakness across bank shares after Bloomberg reported that Wells Fargo would face fresh regulatory action over the pace of “restitution” did not help, with Wells stock tumbling more than 5% and dragging the broader bank sector lower…

… after banks were the best performing sector early in the day thanks to the rise in yields. In fact, by the close, most sectors were in the red with the exception of the Russell/small caps…

Breadth was, as usual horrible, with just 159 new highs on the Nasdaq which however was a modest improvement to recent weeks when just the 5 FAAMGs did all the heavy lifting. This was offset by 50 new lows, a drop from the 300+ observed just a week earlier.

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