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  • US equity markets are closed on Monday given Martin Luthar King Junior Day holidays.
  • Last Friday’s 3741 low came in as useful support here, as did the index futures 21DMA at 3740.
  • Earnings, Yellen’s testimony, Biden’s inauguration, the pandemic and European PMIs will be the most closely watched themes.

US equity markets are closed on Monday given Martin Luthar King Junior Day holidays. Equity index futures are still trading however; S&P 500 futures have gradually eased back into positive territory on the day and now trade around the 3770 mark up about 0.2% on the day, having hit lows in the 3740s midway through Monday’s Asia Pacific session.

Last Friday’s 3741 low came in as useful support here, as did the index futures 21-day moving average (DMA), which currently resides just below the 3740 mark; the 21DMA has acted as a solid level of support all the way back to early November, prior to positive vaccine news sending risk assets into overdrive.

Driving the week

This week is the first full week of the first earnings season of 2021. But aside from individual stock fundamentals, traders will also be watching macro/political themes for indications as to where the S&P 500 and other major US indices might be headed next; Janet Yellen, the incoming Treasury Secretary, will be speaking on Tuesday and Joe Biden will be inaugurated to the US Presidency in a scaled-down event (given security risks and the pandemic) on Thursday. The most important words that could come out of each of their mouths, as far as investors are concerned anyway, would be regarding the prospects for fiscal stimulus. Markets are still unsure as to how much of the recently announced $1.9T Covid-19 rescue package Biden will be able to deliver on.

Aside from domestic politics and earnings, investors will also continue to observe the state of the global pandemic (lots of focus is currently on the outbreak China that has led to 29M people in the country going back into lockdown). Thursday’s ECB meeting should be a bore given the bank acted decisively last month, but European flash January PMIs ought to offer European (and by virtue also US) equity markets some impetus.