GDP number could matter big-time for stocks and bonds – CNBC

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After a trading session that saw the S&P 500 rise nearly 1 percent for its best day in two months, Boris Schlossberg, BK Asset Management’s managing director of foreign exchange strategy, breaks down three key market themes he is watching for on Thursday.

1. The GDP figure

The Commerce Department on Thursday publishes its third reading of the first quarter’s gross domestic product, and Schlossberg is watching for what he says will be a “very important data point” for the market.

“If it shows any sign of upside surprise, that could be very positive for both equity and bond markets. However, any kind of downward revision would really cast a very, very downward spell on both equity traders and bond markets,” he said Wednesday on CNBC’s “Trading Nation.”

The previous first-quarter GDP estimate published last month showed economic growth slowed less sharply than the initial reading showed.

Economists are expecting the report to show an increase of 1.2 percent, unchanged from that prior report.

2. Fearless stocks

The CBOE volatility index is trading near its lowest levels of the year, and complacency is “high,” but Schlossberg is watching to see if other markets (notably foreign exchange) are beginning to see traces of rising volatility.

The market is “long overdue” for an increase in volatility, he said Wednesday.

3. Nike earnings

Footwear manufacturer Nike reports quarterly earnings Thursday after the closing bell, and Schlossberg will be watching for the results. Nike has underperformed the broader market by nearly 20 percent in the last year.

“They have streamlined staff, they have changed product sets, but there is some upside potential here because their new VaporMax product has received tremendously positive reviews. So I will be watching to see if there is any upside surprise to Nike,” Schlossberg said.

Analysts give the $53.36 stock, on average, a bullish $60.37 price target, with an average rating of “overweight.” Analysts collectively expect earnings of $2.41 per share, according to FactSet data.