Back to Normal?

 

You might not have noticed, but  stocks have been on a tear.

As I write this Friday morning, the Dow Jones Industrial Average and Nasdaq Composite index are on track for a seventh consecutive day of gains. That would mark the Dow’s longest winning streak since last October.

The Dow is up more than 900 points since May 2nd, the S&P 500 index has tacked on 100 points and the Nasdaq more than 300. Each has advanced nearly 4%.

That comes amid the best earnings season in years—one that up until now got no respect—and a ten-year Treasury note whose yield stubbornly refuses to stay above 3%.

The CBOE Volatility index (VIX) also has gradually worked its way down to just above 13, way below its panic peak of 37+ on February 5th. Will we soon see a single-digit VIX again?

So, what’s behind this apparent return to normal?

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