While stocks have bounced in an impression manner of late, the question of the day remains the same. Cutting to the chase, both sides are wondering if the recent run for the roses ended Monday at the all-important retracement level of 2000 on the S&P 500.
The bulls argue that stocks were due for a rest given the swiftness of the 9.4% blast to the upside that occurred over the last 3 weeks. Our heroes in horns suggest that this move is starting to be reminiscent of the October 2015 rebound, which was sponsored by Mr. Draghi and some well-coordinated central bank intervention.
Speaking of Mr. Draghi, with expectations running high for the ECB to announce additional stimulus at the upcoming meeting of the European Central Bank, many wonder what will happen if Super Mario fails once again to deliver the goods.
If you will recall, it was disappointment in the ECB's announcement that killed the last bull run in its tracks. As such, traders fret that stocks could be in for a repeat if Draghi doesn't drag out the QE bazooka this time.
From a technical perspective, the bears argue that the 2000 mark on the S&P represents critical resistance and that yesterday's failure should usher in more selling. In short, talk of a reversal dominates the discussion in the glass-is-half-empty camp.
S&P 500 - Daily
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However, before we get too carried away with the idea that the bulls are out of steam here, let's remember that this game remains all about oil.
Compare the action in the chart of the USO (below) and the S&P (above) over the last month. See what I mean?
US Oil Fund (NYSE: USO) - Daily
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From my perch, it would seem that oil remains the name of the game here. So, if oil continues to rebound it is a safe bet that stocks will follow suit.
However, I'm also of the mind that if Super Mario should disappoint again in front of the microphones, the bears could easily regain control for a spell.
Thus, we will continue to watch the correlation trade between oil and stocks in the near term as well as what the bankers are saying across the pond.
Finally we would be remiss if we did not take a moment to with this bull market a happy 7th birthday! Recall that 7 years ago today, Jamie Dimon stood in front of the microphones on the White House lawn and reminded everyone that his bank was making money. And given that the thinking at the time was that the global banking system was about to fail, that was all it took for traders to come to their sense. So, Happy B-Day Mr. Bull!
Turning to This Morning
Things are fairly quiet on this fine Wednesday morning. Stocks fell in China, snapping a six-day winning streak. Across the pond, the equity markets appear to be following oil's lead and are firmly positive in the early going. So, as the market has had a tendency to do over the last couple of years, stocks appear ready to reverse yesterday afternoon's slide thanks in no small part to a rebound in oil futures. As such, futures point to a green open on Wall Street.
Today's Pre-Game Indicators
Here are the Pre-Market indicators we review each morning before the opening bell...
Major Foreign Markets:
Hong Kong: -0.08%
Crude Oil Futures: +$0.56 to $37.05
Gold: +$12.60 at $1254.30
Dollar: lower against the yen, higher vs. euro and pound
10-Year Bond Yield: Currently trading at 1.881%
Stock Indices in U.S. (relative to fair value):
S&P 500: +10.90
Dow Jones Industrial Average: +85
NASDAQ Composite: +21.10
Thought For The Day:
Laughter is the brush that sweeps away the cobwebs of your heart. - Mort Walker
Here's wishing you green screens and all the best for a great day,
Current Market Drivers
We strive to identify the driving forces behind the market action on a daily basis. The thinking is that if we can both identify and understand why stocks are doing what they are doing on a short-term basis; we are not likely to be surprised/blind-sided by a big move. Listed below are what we believe to be the driving forces of the current market (Listed in order of importance).
1. The State of the Oil Crisis
2. The State of Global Central Bank Policy
3. The State of the Stock Market Valuations
4. The State of Global Growth
The State of the Trend
We believe it is important to analyze the market using multiple time-frames. We define short-term as 3 days to 3 weeks, intermediate-term as 3 weeks to 6 months, and long-term as 6 months or more. Below are our current ratings of the three primary trends:
Short-Term Trend (1 - 3 Weeks): Positive
(Chart below is S&P 500 daily over past 1 month)
Intermediate-Term Trend (1 - 6 Months): Neutral
(Chart below is S&P 500 daily over past 6 months)
Long-Term Trend (6 - 18 Months): Moderately Negative
(Chart below is S&P 500 daily over past 2 years)
Key Technical Areas:
Traders as well as computerized algorithms are generally keenly aware of the important technical levels on the charts from a short-term basis. Below are the levels we deem important to watch today:
- Key Near-Term Support Zone(s) for S&P 500: 1950(ish)
- Key Near-Term Resistance Zone(s): 2000-2020
The State of the Tape
Momentum indicators are designed to tell us about the technical health of a trend - I.E. if there is any "oomph" behind the move. Below are a handful of our favorite indicators relating to the market's "mo"...
- Trend and Breadth Confirmation Indicator (Short-Term): Positive
- Price Thrust Indicator: Positive
- Volume Thrust Indicator(NASDAQ): Positive
- Breadth Thrust Indicator (NASDAQ): Positive
- Short-Term Volume Relationship: Positive
- Technical Health of 100+ Industry Groups: Moderately Positive
The Early Warning Indicators
Markets travel in cycles. Thus we must constantly be on the lookout for changes in the direction of the trend. Looking at market sentiment and the overbought/sold conditions can provide "early warning signs" that a trend change may be near.
- S&P 500 Overbought/Oversold Conditions:
- Short-Term: Overbought
- Intermediate-Term: Neutral
- Market Sentiment: Our primary sentiment model is Neutral
The State of the Market Environment
One of the keys to long-term success in the stock market is stay in tune with the market's "big picture" environment in terms of risk versus reward.
- Weekly Market Environment Model Reading: Neutral
Trend and Breadth Confirmation Indicator (Short-Term) Explained: History shows the most reliable market moves tend to occur when the breadth indices are in gear with the major market averages. When the breadth measures diverge, investors should take note that a trend reversal may be at hand. This indicator incorporates an All-Cap Dollar Weighted Equity Series and A/D Line. From 1998, when the A/D line is above its 5-day smoothing and the All-Cap Equal Weighted Equity Series is above its 25-day smoothing, the equity index has gained at a rate of +32.5% per year. When one of the indicators is above its smoothing, the equity index has gained at a rate of +13.3% per year. And when both are below, the equity index has lost +23.6% per year.
Price Thrust Indicator Explained: This indicator measures the 3-day rate of change of the Value Line Composite relative to the standard deviation of the 30-day average. When the Value Line's 3-day rate of change have moved above 0.5 standard deviation of the 30-day average ROC, a "thrust" occurs and since 2000, the Value Line Composite has gained ground at a rate of +20.6% per year. When the indicator is below 0.5 standard deviation of the 30-day, the Value Line has lost ground at a rate of -10.0% per year. And when neutral, the Value Line has gained at a rate of +5.9% per year.
Volume Thrust Indicator Explained: This indicator uses NASDAQ volume data to indicate bullish and bearish conditions for the NASDAQ Composite Index. The indicator plots the ratio of the 10-day total of NASDAQ daily advancing volume (i.e., the total volume traded in stocks which rose in price each day) to the 10-day total of daily declining volume (volume traded in stocks which fell each day). This ratio indicates when advancing stocks are attracting the majority of the volume (readings above 1.0) and when declining stocks are seeing the heaviest trading (readings below 1.0). This indicator thus supports the case that a rising market supported by heavier volume in the advancing issues tends to be the most bullish condition, while a declining market with downside volume dominating confirms bearish conditions. When in a positive mode, the NASDAQ Composite has gained at a rate of +38.3% per year, When neutral, the NASDAQ has gained at a rate of +13.3% per year. And when negative, the NASDAQ has lost at a rate of -8.5% per year.
Breadth Thrust Indicator Explained: This indicator uses the number of NASDAQ-listed stocks advancing and declining to indicate bullish or bearish breadth conditions for the NASDAQ Composite. The indicator plots the ratio of the 10-day total of the number of stocks rising on the NASDAQ each day to the 10-day total of the number of stocks declining each day. Using 10-day totals smooths the random daily fluctuations and gives indications on an intermediate-term basis. As expected, the NASDAQ Composite performs much better when the 10-day A/D ratio is high (strong breadth) and worse when the indicator is in its lower mode (weak breadth). The most bullish conditions for the NASDAQ when the 10-day A/D indicator is not only high, but has recently posted an extreme high reading and thus indicated a thrust of upside momentum. Bearish conditions are confirmed when the indicator is low and has recently signaled a downside breadth thrust. In positive mode, the NASDAQ has gained at a rate of +22.1% per year since 1981. In a neutral mode, the NASDAQ has gained at a rate of +14.5% per year. And when in a negative mode, the NASDAQ has lost at a rate of -6.4% per year.
Bull/Bear Volume Relationship Explained: This indicator plots both "supply" and "demand" volume lines. When the Demand Volume line is above the Supply Volume line, the indicator is bullish. From 1981, the stock market has gained at an average annual rate of +11.7% per year when in a bullish mode. When the Demand Volume line is below the Supply Volume line, the indicator is bearish. When the indicator has been bearish, the market has lost ground at a rate of -6.1% per year.
Technical Health of 100 Industry Groups Explained: Designed to provide a reading on the technical health of the overall market, this indicator takes the technical temperature of more than 100 industry sectors each week. Looking back to early 1980, when the model is rated as "positive," the S&P has averaged returns in excess of 23% per year. When the model carries a "neutral" reading, the S&P has returned over 11% per year. But when the model is rated "negative," stocks fall by more than -13% a year on average.
Weekly State of the Market Model Reading Explained:Different market environments require different investing strategies. To help us identify the current environment, we look to our longer-term State of the Market Model. This model is designed to tell us when risk factors are high, low, or uncertain. In short, this longer-term oriented, weekly model tells us whether the odds favor the bulls, bears, or neither team.
The opinions and forecasts expressed herein are those of Mr. David Moenning and may not actually come to pass. Mr. Moenning's opinions and viewpoints regarding the future of the markets should not be construed as recommendations. The analysis and information in this report is for informational purposes only. No part of the material presented in this report is intended as an investment recommendation or investment advice. Neither the information nor any opinion expressed constitutes a solicitation to purchase or sell securities or any investment program.
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