Sunday, June 20, 2010

Greenspan Dampens Mood on Friday

- Stocks finish on a quiet note, expiration or no.
- Greenspan dampens the mood on Friday, but no damage done.
- CAT sees improvement in May, bolstering the notion the economy is working through a slow spot.
- Holding the upside break thus far, and this week we see if Oversold Bounce, Part 2 can extend to the January peak.

A session that does no harm is a good session at this juncture.

The intraday chart on the SP500 was rather boring for an expiration Friday. The market started a bit higher, sold off, and rallied back looking solid, but nit could not hold it through the end of the day. It worked flat for the last five hours of trade. Volume was up a little bit, but there was not much excitement, and that was strange given the market flatlined to end the week on Wednesday through Friday. There was a solid burst higher on Tuesday, but it could not carry through. Maybe much of the expiration was wrapped up on Tuesday because there were many shorts that were caught with their shorts down, so to speak. The market surprised them with oversold bounce part two. The SP500 moved through the 200 day EMA on Tuesday and then was able to move laterally through the end of the week, expiration or not. Given the condition of the market over the past two to three months, not doing any damage to an upside move can almost be considered a win. Given that the market is consolidating that rally higher through the 200 day EMA, I will take it as a win on Friday.

The market did close somewhat mixed. NASDAQ +2.4 points, the Dow +16.5, and SP500 +1.5. The SOX was down a bit after some heady gains in market leadership, and SP600 the NASDAQ 100 finished on the upside but basically flatline. That is the story of Wednesday through Friday; it was flatline. Given that the market has struggled of late and just started a new surge higher, however, the ability to hold over the 200 day EMA on the SP500 is a plus.

It was not all candy and roses on the news front. There was a relative lack of news, but the US did have a wet blanket thrown over the action early on. Greenspan has been relatively sage over the last few years. On Friday he said that the US has to realize it will face higher borrowing costs until there is a "tectonic shift" in our fiscal policy in order to contain borrowing. He is talking about the problems he always saw with Social Security and Medicare. Now we have additional problems with the new healthcare plan and cap and trade. Let's not forget the massive stimulus plans and that we have given Fannie and Freddie unlimited funds. They are running up the deficit and our interest rates further. He said we would be considered in the same breath as Greece in the not-too-distant future if we do not change our fiscal ways. It is not rocket science, but it seems not too many people realize that in Washington, DC. To some extent I miss Greenspan with respect to his warnings to Congress that this was coming. That is one thing he was consistent on and consistently correct on. Unfortunately we did not heed the warnings and we are moving in the opposite direction. It was interesting to see what Greenspan was saying but it helped throw a damp blanket on the market on Friday. Overall it did not have that much impact and the market continued what it was doing all along: consolidating that strong move higher from earlier in the week.

There was positive news on the economic front. CAT said its Asian sales were up 38% in May and up 15% in North America. That bolsters the argument that there was a slowdown in late April and early May, but that it was overcome with a new surge of activity. While there are some mixed reports from the regional manufacturers the Philly Fed was a disappointment at 8 versus the 20 expected there is still improvement in New York and other areas. Manufacturing continues to help lead the economy, but the irony is that manufacturing is one of the smaller parts of our economy now. Is that another version of "The children shall lead"? Thus far (as in 2000) manufacturing is helping reverse the recession and trying to claw us back to recovery.


The market was in something of transition with the oversold bounce part two resuming and Europe being viewed as somewhat stabilized. That is not really the case, of course. I think it is more like the news is no longer news and people have become immune to the story. We tend to go about our lives even though it could still explode at any point. That seems to be the case this week as the markets outside of equities still continued to show some of their same trends, but they were mixed overall.

Dollar. The DXY0 closed flat on Friday (1.2388 Euros versus 1.2385 Thursday) but continues a two-week trend lower which is testing the strong move from April into late May and early June. It has come back for a couple of weeks to test as the European worries have died down. As I said, it is a situation where the news is so bad that it cannot continue to come out as negative. Once investors become inured to the story, it does not affect them until something major happens again.

The dollar continues to test back after its sharp last leg in the rally, but it is not in any danger of breaking down. It is still above the 50 day EMA. It is in a very orderly pullback and coming back to a support level from late April and early May. A high and a low. This will be the most important level near term for the dollar to test.

Bonds. Bonds were up late in the week. They closed the week higher (versus the prior week) as they continue to work laterally at roughly a 3-4 week range. That started when China said it had full faith and confidence in European debt and the Euro. Since then bonds have moved laterally but have not sold off appreciably. Friday they lost a little ground (10 year US treasury 3.22% versus 3.20% Thursday), but still at very high levels just off the peaks. There is still fear supporting US bonds. If the economy is recovering well and things were thought to be better in the future, bonds would be selling and yields would be rising. Instead bond yields are staying low and bonds holding at their range highs. That is not what is expected and anticipated with an improving economy and, frankly, worries about inflation.

Gold. Gold had a solid week. It broke to a new all-time high, rallying sharply Thursday and Friday, but it was a strong week altogether with a good Tuesday move as well ($1,259, +9.00). Fear and worry of inflation make a very strong one-two punch to drive gold higher and higher. Some pundits say not to buy gold, yet all gold continues to do is move higher. I suppose they are entitled to their opinion and we are entitled to make money.

Oil. Oil finished modestly higher ($77.39, +0.60). Not much of a move on the day, but there is nothing stopping oil from moving to the top of its range near 83 - maybe not the upper peak in April, but it has had a stair step move higher. It broke through the 200 day EMA Wednesday, testing again Thursday and Friday, and then was bouncing off the Friday low. It looks like a very nice test, giving it the strength it needs to bounce into the range from March or into the January peak. Oil continues to look strong and will continue up in the range from the looks of it. That would be somewhat consistent with the idea that European and US economies are not in as dire a situation as believed a few weeks ago. Nothing has really changed for Europe, however. Spain had an auction. It had decent cover ratios, but it still had to pay the highest interest rates even above 2008 levels. 2008 was a crisis, and now they have to pay more for their bonds on interest in order to attract buyers than they did in that crisis period. Are we in a crisis period now? It would lead one to believe so, but no one seems to feel that is the case. Can you have a crisis without having anyone think it is a crisis? Yes and no. You need the emotion there to drive it, so for now, we are chugging along. The markets show that ideas are mixed. Gold, bonds, and oil are all pointing in different directions as to where they view the economies of the world heading over the next 6-12 months.

In this situation we look at what the market is telling us now, and we play that while we have an eye down the road to what may happen of more significance. The bond market is very sage in foretelling what the future holds at least that is the history. Of all the markets, it tends to be the wisest, so I am keeping an eye on the US bonds market that continues to rally even as everyone thinks the economies of the world are in decent shape in this recovery.



Volume. Volume jumped up to 1.9B on NASDAQ, rising 12%. It rose 52% on the NYSE to 1.7B, and that pushed it back to average. This is not big news because it was expiration. There had been quiet volume all week, and if that is the case, typically volume comes in on Friday. It will often come in on Tuesday and Wednesday. It did not happen, so it saved all the fireworks until the end of the week. There was not much price movement in conjunction with that volume, so the fireworks were not spectacular.

Breadth. Breadth was not spectacular either at 1.2:1 on the NASDAQ and 1.3:1 advancers over decliners on the NYSE. Not telling us anything the charts did not show, so there is no divergence to talk about. When the market is up sharply, then breadth the up sharply and vice versa. That says they are still in the process of fighting it out, but the bulls may be taking more of a lead right now as the SP500 broke over the 200 day EMA.


SP500. SP500 got the break over the 200 day EMA, and held it Wednesday to Thursday. Volume was low on the consolidation. It was low on the move up, too, so you cannot be too excited about it. There was a big volume day on Friday thanks to expiration. Now it is at the 50 day EMA, sandwiched between that and the 200 day EMA and just below the January range for the lows to the highs. Next move, we got what we wanted on Tuesday through Thursday: a break over the 200 day EMA and a quiet hold. The lack of bad news and excitement was actually good news on Friday. Holding this break is a positive, and I am still looking for a break to the upside. It may test a bit on Monday or even Tuesday this week. If it holds above this level I am looking for the break up to the January peak. That would be a good place for it to try, and that had a closing of 1150. That is what we are looking for next week, and is our target for this range because a lot of bulls and bears are looking at this. The bulls say they have the second part of this bounce, it is taken hold, and it is moving higher. That is great. We are playing that to the upside, and I have no problem with that. The issue is that the bears are also excited because they are looking at the January peak. If it gets there, they think selling can go on because they are looking at this move as potentially setting up the right shoulder of a head and shoulders pattern. The bears are biding their time and not pushing it right now. We may not see them push the sell button very hard until SP500 gets in this range from the bottom to the top of the January peak. If there is wavering there, they will probably push the sell button and try to drive stocks back down. This is one case where both the bears and the bulls are relatively happy at the same time.

NASDAQ. NASDAQ is already at its January peak, and that is leading some people to ask why the NASDAQ could not be the dominant factor. It made it to the January peak first and is stalling what says it is not going to roll over? Nothing says it will not roll over. It will do what it will do, but from talking to hedge fund managers, fund managers and floor traders, I feel that the bulls will try to generate some momentum to the upside on SP500. When it gets to the January peak, everything will be reevaluated. That would mean NASDAQ gets up toward the March lateral move that had a closing high at 2410. Given that NASDAQ closed at 2310, it is another 100 point move NASDAQ could put in. That would be coincident and commensurate with the SP500 rally up to its January peak. In other words, they would be proportionate moves from here.

SP600. SP600 was up just a fraction on Friday, but it is moving laterally as well after making the break higher just below their March peak. All of these sold off to different levels because they are at different points of leadership. SP600 was a great leader, NASDAQ was second, and SP500 was third. We have them at different levels of resistance. If the large caps can break higher, I am expecting SP600 to carry up toward the gap point back in April or maybe the May peak. They are roughly coincident, and that could be where the small caps travel to the upside.

SOX. The semiconductors came to life last week, and the SOX made a sharp spurt higher. There was a very good two-week run, took it over the January peak, and now it is testing it. There is room to run to the gap point which will be one of the significant next points for the SOX. Since it is leading to the upside and since I think there is still upside on SP500, this is very doable for the SOX. In other words, coming right below the April peak where it gapped to. Very interesting pattern and looks to lead higher this week.


Semiconductors. SNDK is one of the leaders and is tied to AAPL at the hip somewhat. It had a great week, gapping higher and rallying. It closed a little flat on Friday, but it had a nice run higher. It continues its leadership. It is not in a buy point, of course. KLIC is moving laterally the past three days, similar to the SP500 after breaking higher, moving through some resistance. Look for these kinds of plays; the double bottom is giving a chance to move in. You are not catching the entire move, but you need to see if there is a move you can catch that gives a good risk/reward no matter where it is in its pattern. The entry point is important. If there is good risk/reward and there is still plenty of realistic upside versus your support point to the downside, then that may make a play worth playing. Semiconductors continue to move higher, and it is just a matter of looking for pullbacks and tests to see what kind of reward you have versus the risk you are putting in.

Financial. I like some of the financials, and they held up a bit on Friday. JPM posted a nice gain on the session, clearing some resistance. If you are not in, you might want to take a look at that.

Retail. Retail continues to show strength from different areas. Some sectors have already run and others are moving up. JOSB made a super rally and has been consolidating over the past two months. It is making a higher low at the 18 day EMA and getting great volume. Very interesting and could make a good move higher. PII had a nice lateral move, low volume after breaking higher. Good position if it can show us the move.

Industrials. JOYG gapped away from us, but there was a reverse head and shoulders after a selloff. It is come back to test and is forming a flag. That is very interesting action that might give an entry point. There is room to play it. It is at roughly 55.5, and you are looking at a move up to 65. You can get a nice gain out of that stock.

Metals. CLF has set up nicely. A double bottom at the 200 day EMA, and it has rallied up to the hump in the pattern and moved laterally. Nice, low volume with MACD still rising even as it moves laterally. There is positive divergence there. I am looking for a break to the upside.

Technology. AAPL was on the ropes, but no more. It reversed and broke back through this gap point something that is difficult to do. It is a strong leader moving higher. Not bad. Well, saying "not bad" about AAPL is like saying the moon landing in '69 was a neat parlor trick.

Leadership is still rather thin, but the market bounce and that lateral move that was setting up over several weeks helped some of the stocks that needed a consolidation to get it and set up for the next move. We are seeing some fattening of the ranks of leadership. It is not where it needs to be for a huge rally. Many times volatility will spike up, the market will turn and not look great at the beginning because it does not have great leadership. Then leadership will develop over a course of weeks and all of a sudden you have stocks popping out of decent consolidations or even good bases all over the place. We will see if that happens. We are definitely getting enough plays to make to the upside during this oversold bounce. And they are not beaten up and ugly-looking stock patterns; these are nice patterns that have set up and are making good moves. No complaints about that.



VIX. Over the past two weeks, it has fallen straight down to the 200 day EMA. It broke below the peaks in January and February. It could bounce off of this level, but there are sharp peaks higher on the fear before it settles back. It is classic action. The fear sets the stage for a bottom, and then the lateral move, the choppy trade, and the break lower as the actual rebound rally takes place that was set as a result of these high volatility numbers. This week the second part of the bounce has taken off. That has driven volatility lower. It told us what would happen, and did a decent job of forecasting.

VIX: 23.95; -1.1
VXN: 24.15; -1
VXO: 22.53; -1.91

Put/Call Ratio (CBOE): 0.88; -0.02

Bulls versus Bears:

This past week the bearish number of investment advisors topped bullish advisors. That is a rare event and thus very noteworthy. It falls into our theme that the sentiment indicators have hit extremes and are at levels sufficient for at least a more sustained bounce in the indices.

This is a reading of the number of bullish investment advisors versus bearish advisors. The reason you look at this is that it gives you an idea of how bullish investors are. If they are too bullish then everyone is in the market and it is heading for a top: if everyone wants to be in the market then all the money is in and there is no more new cash to drive it higher. On the other side of the spectrum if there are a lot of bears then there is a lot of cash on the sideline, and as the market rallies it drags that cash in as the bears give in. That cash provides the market the fuel to move higher. If bears are low it is the same as a lot of bulls: everyone is in and the market doesn't have the cash to drive it higher.

Bulls: 37.0% versus 38.5%. Still falling even as the market tries to find footing, not an unusual occurrence. A steady slide and down substantially from 43.8%, 47.2%, and 56.0% before that. This move started at a low of 35.6% in February, the lowest it has been since July 2009. 35% is the threshold level suggesting bullishness. After peaking at 53 on this move the bulls lost some nerve, falling to a new low post- July 2009. Once again bulls peaked out near the 50% level. Bulls have bumped at 50ish since late August 2009, falling to 45ish and then rebounding. Hit a high of 47.7% mid-June on the run from the March lows. Again, to be seriously bearish it needs to get up to the 60% to 65% level.

Bears: 32.6%. Continuing its steady climb as the 39.9% from last week was revised lower to roughly 31.5%, so no crossover yet with bears topping bulls, but still approaching that rather rare occurrence. Solid rise from the mid to upper 20's. Fell to 18.7% on the low. Hit a high of 27.8% level on the prior leg in February. Over 35% is considered bullish for the market; definitely at the lower end of the scale. Peaked near 28% in November, falling short of the 35.6% hit in July 2009. For reference, cracking above the 35% threshold considered bullish. Hit a high on this run at 47.2%. For reference, bearishness hit a 5 year high at 54.4% the last week of October 2008. The move over 50 took bearish sentiment to its highest level since 1995. Extreme negative sentiment. Prior levels for comparison: Bearishness peaked at 37.4% in September 2007. It topped the June 2006 peak (36%) on that run. That June peak eclipsed the March 2006 high (33%) and well above the 2005 highs that spawned new rallies (30% in May 2005, 29.2% in October 2005). That was a huge turn, unlike any seen in recent history.


Stats: +2.64 points (+0.11%) to close at 2309.8
Volume: 1.931B (+11.99%)

Up Volume: 1K (-956.056M)
Down Volume: 1K (-779.677M)

A/D and Hi/Lo: Advancers led 1.2 to 1
Previous Session: Advancers led 1.01 to 1

New Highs: 56 (+15)
New Lows: 30 (-5)





Stats: +1.47 points (+0.13%) to close at 1117.51
NYSE Volume: 1.766B (+52.39%)

Up Volume: 950.223M (+497.888M)
Down Volume: 752.044M (+58.79M)

A/D and Hi/Lo: Advancers led 1.32 to 1
Previous Session: Advancers led 1.01 to 1

New Highs: 103 (+1)
New Lows: 40 (+10)




Stats: +16.47 points (+0.16%) to close at 10450.64
Volume DJ30: 338M shares Friday versus 181M shares Thursday.



There will be a lot of economic data coming out and some that will be closely watched. Existing home sales and new home sales for May will come out. There was a lot of disappointment this week with construction starts and how they had plummeted after a first-time buyer credit expired. The home builder sentiment went from bubbly to flat in a two week period of time. These will be important data points for the market. Addition durable goods orders will be important because there is concern as to whether inventories will be rebuilt or if they are still in a "build as necessary" mentality. Jobless claims are always important. They have been rising more, and there is a correlation between initial jobless claims and the stock market. If they are low, the stock market goes high; if they are higher, the stock market goes lower. History shows that it does mean something. We will also see the third iteration of the GDP and Michigan Sentiment. There will be an FOMC decision for rates on Wednesday, and that will be closely watched. It will probably get more print on Monday and Tuesday because the question will be if they will remove the "extended period of time" language as some on the board are saying needs to be done. That might prove somewhat of a setback for stocks.

That is the news picture, but I want to look at the technical picture. This is a technical move because the market sold off sharply, and it held at a key support level on NASDAQ, SP500, and the SOX. Long term support levels have held. They did not just bounce off those levels it took a bit of work, but they are moving up and making new highs on this bounce. We also got what we wanted on the upside with the Wednesday through Friday lateral move. Now we will see if there is a break to the upside to finish the run that we have looked for up to the SP500 January peak at 1150. We will continue to play for that. We see stocks set up and ready to move, and the ranks are fattening a bit. They are not broad and thick, but there are more plays to the upside and very solid plays to the upside that we can take advantage of as SP500 moves toward its January peak, NASDAQ moves toward its May peak or the March consolidation, and as the SP600 moves up toward its early April consolidation or even its May peak below its all-time high.

We have upside to play as the indices look to continue the oversold bounce part two. We will take advance of those as much as we can on that move. Have an excellent weekend.

Support and Resistance

NASDAQ: Closed at 2309.80

The 50 day EMA at 2308
2319 from the September 2008 peak
2320 to 2326.28 is the January 2010 high
2324-2370 is a range of resistance from early 2008
2382-2395 from 2008
2412-2415 represents a series of peaks and lows in 2007, 2008
2434 is the May 2010 high
2453 is the August 2008 peak

2292 is a low from January 2008
2273 to 2282 marks bottom of January 2010 lateral peak
2275 - 2278 from the February 2008 and April 2008 lows
The 200 day SMA at 2246
2245 from July 2008 through 2260 from late 2005.
2205 is the November 2009 peak 2210 (from September 2008) to 2212 (the July 2009 closing low)
2185 to 2195 represent support points for years: December 2004 peak, July to October 2005 consolidation, January, March and July 2008 lows, and October 2009 peak.
2177 is a low from March 2008
2169 is the March 2008 closing low (double bottom)
2168 is the September 2009, intraday peak
2167 from the July 2008 intraday low
2155 is the March 2008 intraday low
2100 is the February 2010 low

S&P 500: Closed at 1117.51
1119 is the early December intraday high
The 50 day EMA at 1120
Bottom of the January 2010 consolidation 1131 to 1136
1133 from a September 2008 intraday low
1151 is the January 2010 peak
1156 is the Sept 2008 low
1170 is the prior March 2010 high
1174 is the May 2010 high
1181 is the April selloff low
1185 from late September 2008

1114 is the November 2009 peak
The 200 day SMA at 1110
1106 is the September 2008 low
1101 is the October 2009 high
1084 to 1080 (September 2009 peak)
1078 is the October range low
1070 is the late September 2009 peak
1044 is the October 2008 intraday high AND the February 2010 low
1040 is the May 2010 low
1020 is the bottom of the late summer 2009 consolidation
946 from June 2009

Dow: Closed at 10,450.64
The 50 day EMA at 10,435
10,496 is the November 2009 high
10,609 from the Mid-September 2008 interim low
10,730 is the January 2010 peak
10,920 is the recent May high
10,963 is the July 2008 low
11,100 from the 7-08 low
11,205 is the April closing high
11,734 from 11-98 peak

10,365 is the late September 2008 low
The 200 day SMA at 10,335
10,285 is the late December consolidation peak
10,120 is the October 2009 peak
9829 is the September 2008 closing high
9918 is the September 2008 peak
9855 is the early September peak in its lateral range
9835 is the late September 2009 peak AND the February 2010 low
9774 is the May 2010 intraday low

Economic Calendar

These are consensus expectations. Our expectations will vary and are discussed in the 'Economy' section.

June 15 - Tuesday
Export Prices ex-ag., May (08:30): 0.6% actual versus 1.3% prior (revised from 1.4%)
Import Prices ex-oil, May (08:30): 0.5% actual versus 0.6% prior (revised from 0.5%)
Empire Manufacturing, June (08:30): 19.57 actual versus 20.0 expected, 19.11 prior
Net Long-Term TIC Fl, April (09:00): $83.0 actual versus $140.5B prior

June 16 - Wednesday
Housing Starts, May (08:30): 593K actual versus 655K expected, 659K prior (revised from 672K)
Building Permits, May (08:30): 574K actual versus 631K expected, 610K prior (revised from 606K)
PPI, May (08:30): -0.3% actual versus -0.5% expected, -0.1% prior
Core PPI, May (08:30): 0.2% actual versus 0.1% expected, 0.2% prior
Capacity Utilization, May (09:15): 74.7% actual versus 74.4% expected, 73.7% prior
Industrial Production, May (09:15): 1.2% actual versus 0.8% expected, 0.7% prior (revised from 0.8%)
Crude Inventories, 06/12 (10:30): 1.69M actual versus -1.83M prior

June 17 - Thursday
Initial Claims, 06/12 (08:30): 450K expected, 452K prior
Continuing Claims, 06/5 (08:30): 4475K expected, 4462K prior
CPI, May (08:30): -0.1% expected, -0.1% prior
Core CPI, May (08:30): 0.1% expected, 0.0% prior
Current Account Balance, Q1 (08:30): -$124.0B expected, -$115.6B prior
Leading Indicators, May (10:00): 0.5% expected, -0.1% prior
Philadelphia Fed, June (10:00): 20.0 expected, 21.4 prior

June 22 - Tuesday
Existing Home Sales, May (10:00): 6.10M expected, 5.77M prior
FHFA Housing Price I, April (10:00): 0.3% prior

June 23 - Wednesday
New Home Sales, May (10:00): 427K expected, 504K prior
Crude Inventories, 06/19 (10:30): 1.69M prior
FOMC Rate Decision, June 23 (14:15): 0.25% expected, 0.25% prior

June 24 - Thursday
Durable Orders, May (08:30): -1.4% expected, 2.8% prior
Durable Orders ex Transportation, May (08:30): 1.25% expected, -1.1% prior
Initial Jobless Claims, 06/19 (08:30): 458K expected, 472K prior
Continuing Claims, 06/19 (08:30): 4580K expected, 4571K prior

June 25 - Friday
GDP - Third Estimate, Q1 (08:30): 3.0% expected, 3.0% prior
GDP Deflator, Q1 (08:30): 1.0% expected, 1.0% prior
University of Michigan Sentiment, June (09:55): 75.5 expected, 75.5 prior

By: Jon Johnson, Editor
Copyright 2010 | All Rights Reserved

Jon Johnson is the Editor of The Daily at

Technorati tags:

No comments: