Monday, November 14, 2011

Stocks Continue to Rebound


- ECB buying keeps Italian bond yields lower, gives stocks cover to continue the rebound.
- Michigan sentiment up for three months . . . to still terrible levels.
- Once again when the European intrigue is removed, stocks move higher.
- A new trading range or a steady trend higher to year end?
- Still plenty of solid patterns to keep the indices moving higher.

Get Europe out of the way and stocks want to rise.

On Friday the market showed once again that if we can just get Europe out of the way, stocks really do want to move to the upside. The ECB has been heavily buying bonds starting on Thursday and continuing on Friday. That was able to push Italian bond yields from about 7.5% to below 6.5%. 7% is the magic number that everyone looks at with respect to bond yields. If a 10 year is yielding more than 7%, no one wants your assets. It is very hard to make your economy grow and do what you need to do if you cannot get money, so the ECB is out buying and bond rates were lower. As a result, there was a collective sigh of relief in stock markets around the world. They all performed pretty well, and the U.S. was no exception.

There was not a lot of other news out before the open other than simply a better outlook for Europe, particularly in Italy. There were some U.S. earnings that were pretty decent. DIS performed nicely. It gapped sharply higher. As a matter of fact, members of my family are going to Disney on Ice tonight. More money for the House of Mouse.

There was enough to keep stocks moving higher. When I say enough, I mean without Europe being in the way and trying to louse up the end-of-year move in the rest of the market. This market wants to move higher on seasonal trends and on catch-up by funds. Every time the overlay of Europe is removed, stocks move higher. We saw that on Friday, and that gives hope that toward the end of the year as we move toward Thanksgiving, we will see stocks continue to move higher.

As I have discussed all week and last week, there were certainly plenty of patterns still in position to make a move to the upside. Take away Europe (or at least get used to the idea of Europe) and you have the stock market performing better. Even with the Wednesday downdraft on the Italian job, after the big hits occur because of Europe, the market is moving higher. Taking away Europe or getting used to it maybe the market is becoming somewhat immune to Europe. Maybe. If Europe collapses it will be ugly. But if this is the kind of "stuff" we have to deal with, than perhaps the stock market becomes somewhat immune to the barbs and can continue higher toward the end of the year.

Looking at the intraday chart, futures were up early. When the market opened they rallied nicely. Stocks moved up sharply into mid-morning where they pretty much hit the zenith for the day. They spent the rest of the day range trading, bouncing lower and bouncing higher. But it was in a very tight range. That produced some solid moves after a little dip in the last hour failed. Stocks returned back to their session highs.

SP500, +1.95%; NASDAQ, +2.04%; Dow, +2.19%; SP600, +2.75%; SOX, +3.53%.

Very solid upside gains. Again this was with the problem of Europe removed from the picture.

As for the news moving the session, there was not that much domestically. About a half hour into the session, there was the preliminary read of Michigan Sentiment for November. It came in much better than expected at 64.2 versus 61.3 with 60.9 prior. That is the third straight monthly rise. A lot was made of that. It is true: whenever there is a bounce, a trend one way or the other, that helps. But we have also had that bounce in the economic data overall in the past two to three months. Thus you will have sentiment improving a little. These levels are still terrible levels. In other words, non-recession levels are well over 100, and they are not even close to that after two years of supposed recovery.

The entire week saw some better economic data. That continues the trend over the last two to three months. Initial Claims was the big headliner for the week, coming in at 390K versus the 400K reported the prior week. That finally gets it below 390K. This time it looks like it is there for real. Recall the prior week was revised back up to 400K. There are have really been no weeks under 400K before this week.

The data is a bit better overall, and that is good for now. But as I discussed on Thursday and have mentioned the last couple of weeks, 2012 does not look that great. There are so many issues that will impact us in the U.S. that have nothing to do with Europe. I believe we could definitely slide back in recession. I hope I am wrong. That would be great for everybody because there are so many people out of work right now and that need help. I am talking about the real kind of help. Not just giving people money and making some busy work. I mean help that will make jobs that last as opposed to just spending hundreds of billions of dollars on jobs that are here for the moment but then gone. I do not know about you, but I am tired of spending $250-300K on a single job that actually turns out to just be illusory because the company goes out of business. Or spending $200-300K dollars for a single job in a fire department or policeman or teacher. That is an incredible amount of waste. We would be better off just giving them $250K, and then they would have three or four years' worth of salary.

It is incredible what we are doing and that we cannot see what history has done for us. Growth is the real key getting businesses growing not giving away entitlements. It is summed up by the student loans and the high costs of tuition. Looking at the charts, it is almost a dollar-for-dollar track for the amount of money that has been put into the student loan program. Tuition has gone up. The schools are not stupid. They know they will get every dollar put into the system, so they just hike tuition to suck it in as fast as they can. They are maximizing their dollars. And what happens? All it does is inflate tuition. It is the same old story. More money in a contained, closed system with the same amount of product or services means higher-priced products and services. Excess money becomes hot money that inflates prices. That is exactly what happened in schools. It is insane. Children cannot earn their tuition over the summer our over the year as they used to. They have put so much money into the system, and they just suck that money up. Has it gone to more teaches? No. It is gone to more administration and bureaucrats. But I digress. I will not get too deep into that tonight.

Suffice it to say, we have a lot of the same old problems that we always have. In the morning, Mohamed El-Erian of PIMCO was saying that we are not addressing the structural problems we have in the United States. We are just printing more money and trying to spend our way out of it. Spending is the problem right now. He said we have a very real problem and that the economy is near stall speed right now because we are not addressing the structural problems. That is a very good summation. I cannot say I agree with everything Mr. El-Erian says, but he is absolutely right about this.

We have problems that are of a structural nature, and we are not addressing them. We are throwing money at them, and that is exactly what we did before. We are trying to cure debt problems with more debt, and that simply does not work. History shows it does not work. We are really looking at a problem in 2012 as a result


Dollar: 1.3746 versus 1.3604 euro. The dollar was down. It is still overall in its uptrend, but it is struggling. The dollar did fall back down and tap the 50 day EMA on the low. It is still above those four peaks from early and midsummer 2011. It is struggling and, of course, it will go back and forth as Europe goes back and forth. But right now it is still holding above an important support. Will the dollar go higher if the U.S. economy falls? It typically does not, but where will people put their money? Not in Europe and not in the dollar, so I do not know. Maybe China? We will see.

Bonds: 2.06% 10 year U.S. Treasury. Bonds were closed, so no trade today. Just to recap the week, the bonds stayed pretty strong even with a weak auction on Thursday because there were issues in Europe. The bond market is still holding out. They are saying we could have some problems in Europe and there could be some issues, so we will hang on for now and see what happens later in Europe.

Gold: 1,788.10, +28.50. Gold bounced sharply. A very strong move. It is bouncing back up off of a test. It broke higher, it has tested, and now it is looking to move to the upside. Why? Europe is ready to pass its bailout package because it is getting rid of the Greek Prime Minister and the Italian Prime Minister. We will have people in there who are just going to go for total money printing. That is going to feed into inflation. Likely the U.S. will have to do something similar next year when the economy that is now hitting stall speed actually stalls out.

Oil: 98.99, +1.21. Oil gained again. Quite a strong day and quite a strong week for oil. It went straight to the upside, and now it is bumping up against the some resistance at 100. It is not having any problems on the way up. It did stumble a bit at 95. There was some resistance there, so it may want to test a bit at 100 before it continues its move to the upside.


The internals were solid in one respect and weak in another.

Breadth: Breadth was a nice 3.6:1 on NASDAQ and a solid 6:1 advancers over decliners on the NYSE.

Volume: Volume was another story altogether. It fell 16% to a meager 1.5B shares on NASDAQ. It was almost a 20% decline on the NYSE to 691M shares. Again, quite divergent and quite mixed. We are seeing volume down on up days and volume higher on down days. The sellers are definitely stronger, but if you remove the European issue, the sellers do not really have a reason to sell. After all, the U.S. data is getting better, right? We are seeing stocks move to the upside on catch-up and maybe just a feeling that the U.S. has made it through the worst of times with respect to the economic situation.


SP500. SP500 was up for the second day. It moved back up above the June lows. That puts it in this range below the April peak. Maybe we get another trade to the upside. It made a lower high last time, but it also made a higher low. We have a little triangle or pennant pattern forming. It looks like it wants to make the break to the upside. We have very good MACD still in the action. The momentum remains solid. All we have to do is avoid one or two of these days from earlier in the month were Europe reared its head again and sent stocks lower. It does look positive for SP500 to continue to the upside.

NASDAQ. NASDAQ is not as impressive with respect to the chart. It did gap to the upside and is trying to get a pennant of its own going as it sits on top of the August-October peak. It is cracking into this upper tier of the trading range, and we will see if it can make it. It is having a problem with AAPL being a stick in the mud and holding back NASDAQ overall. But it is still managing to make the move upside.

SP600. SP600 looked solid, posting a 2.75% gain. It is forming up a pennant or triangle itself, looking for an upside breakout.

SOX. The semiconductors continue to be the ones to watch. They are the sleepers. They are above their little trendline again with a gap higher on Friday. Maybe a little pennant forming here as well. They are performing well, and we will keep looking at them. If we can pick up some more, we will do that.

After an ugly Wednesday, the indices are right back up. They do not want to give up. They are hanging in there and setting up nicely. Why are they setting up nicely? Because they have leadership to help them along the way.


Semiconductors. LRCX broke higher out of a little pennant or triangle. Look back at the SP500. We have a pennant forming up. There is something similar and we already have the semiconductors making the break to the upside. SLAB had a pennant formed. It is jumping to the upside as well. Semiconductors are going to be performing well. I will not complain about that.

Technology. Techs in general are looking good. GOOG is making the move to the upside. PANL looks good on the upside as well. A is looking solid. It is forming a triangle or pennant pattern; we are seeing just a bit of that here and there in the stock market Even without AAPL, technology is still doing well. 'Tis the season for semiconductors and technology stocks to perform well. It looks like they are trying to do just that.

Retail. Retail is performing well. BWLD has a nice pullback to support. It looks ready to make the move to the upside. LULU is in the middle of its triangle. It is at one of the moments of truth where it has come back to the 50 day EMA right in the middle. The heart of a triangle is forming. It is pinching off toward the end of the triangle, and it will have to make a break sooner than later. Often a higher low at the 50 day EMA leads to a breakout move. We are looking for that as well. PNRA looks like it wants to make the move to the upside. EL has set up nicely after a gap upside on earnings. You like to see these gaps, and then you want to see them continue on to the upside.

Retail is still doing well, but there are some demolitions here. DDS had good earnings but it failed to impress on the margins and was slapped around a bit. There are some of those out there. In retail some are blowing up, but overall they look pretty solid.

Industrial. CAT looked good. Putting in a little buy. It jumped to the upside. It still looks kind of heavy. We have to watch it; we have a downside play on it. But it is trying to make its move. It looked ready to fall, but it is trying to come back. TEX still looks solid as well. With DE it looks like there is some life in the old tractor still.

Miscellaneous. There is still plenty of leadership out there that can make the move for us. Indeed, you can throw out a lot of stocks across many sectors and come up with some really nice patterns. ANSS has a great pattern and a nice surge that it has tested. LNG had a nice pullback, looking very solid. ACE has a great pennant going all its own. TRLG has a nice pullback of its own after a breakout. You can go across many different sectors and find these leaders. That is why I am saying it looks like the market will have more room to move higher. There are so many stocks that have bullish patterns behind them and are under accumulation. That is exactly what you want to see for a market to continue higher. If you can get Europe out of the way, then I believe stocks will rally into the year end and make us some really nice money.



VIX: 30.04; -2.77
VXN: 29.35; -3.32
VXO: 28.72; -2.67

Put/Call Ratio (CBOE): 0.93; -0.23

Bulls versus Bears:

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 does not have the cash to drive it higher.

Bulls: 44.2% versus 43.2%. Steady rise from 40.0% and 35.8% the week before that. Still climbing after crossing back above bears. It could not last forever and with the surge in October just a matter of time. Did its work, however, as the market surged off the readings below 35%. 35% is the threshold measuring bullish versus bearish action. Six weeks the bulls were below bears. A powerful sentiment signal. Solid move lower from 49.5% in late July. Highs from April and December (60% readings spanning December through early May 2011). The 5 year high is 62.0. The crossover level at 29% bulls from July 2010 is long gone. 35% is the threshold level suggesting bullishness. To be seriously bearish it needs to get up to the 60% to 65% level.

Bears: 34.7% versus 36.8%. Falling below 35% for the first time in weeks, continuing the fall from 37.9% and 45.0% before that. It did spend seven weeks over the 35% threshold considered a bullish indicator. For more 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: +53.6 points (+2.04%) to close at 2678.75
Volume: 1.574B (-16.37%)

Up Volume: 1.36B (+230M)
Down Volume: 228.75M (-519.11M)

A/D and Hi/Lo: Advancers led 3.62 to 1
Previous Session: Advancers led 1.68 to 1

New Highs: 29 (+16)
New Lows: 45 (-23)





Stats: +24.16 points (+1.95%) to close at 1263.85
NYSE Volume: 691M (-18.8%)

Up Volume: 3.11B (+480M)
Down Volume: 243.75M (-1.116B)

A/D and Hi/Lo: Advancers led 6.05 to 1
Previous Session: Advancers led 2.34 to 1

New Highs: 121 (+34)
New Lows: 37 (-30)




Stats: +259.89 points (+2.19%) to close at 12153.68
Volume DJ30: 134.5M shares Friday versus 168M shares Thursday.



There are a lot of economic reports to come. We have a quiet Monday, and then the PPI starts on Tuesday. The big one will be the Retail Sales. What is the consumer doing? Remember, Retail Sales can be fickle. Everyone points to them and says Retail Sales have been moving up nicely. They were up 1.1% back in September. They say things are going great, but we have to factor in pricing. Prices have been higher, so we may not be buying that much more with these increased Retail Sales. That is one of those where you have to watch out. It is too easy to say everything is okay without understanding just how these economic reports are put together.

Empire Manufacturing is very important out of New York. It has not been doing well. It is expected to bounce higher. What these regional manufacturing reports pull off will be key. Are they going to continue to head lower, or will they turn up? Remember, regional manufacturing was the economic indicator showing recovery when nothing else was. They have turned down. There overall number is just clinging above 50 right now; it has not fallen. This will be very important as to what these regions show for October and November. If they say negative and that would be a surprise then the economy will not look so good for 2012. It will look even worse than I have already prognosticated. But it can still move higher toward the end of the year. We have the CPI on Wednesday. It will be important to see what those prices are doing. Then on Thursday we have the Philly Fed. Friday are Leading Indicators. Whatever. They do not mean a heck of a lot. The ECRI is the big Leading Indicator.

The economic reports will have something to do with the market action, no doubt. Particularly if the regional reports come in better than expected or worse than expected. They will have their impact. But right now it really looks like the market just wants to move higher. It was kind of tough to stay with that thesis after Wednesday when the stock market sold so hard on the Italian bond issues. What happened right after that? You remove them and stocks have bounced back up. They want to move higher. If they become somewhat immune to all of this European noise, then they will advance nicely.

There will be other setbacks. That is the way it will be. But look what has happened. With every setback there is a lower high, yes, but a lower low. The pattern is narrowing, sitting on top of support. That is a positive. That is very constructive action that will lead to breakout. You also have many stocks in good position to move higher. We have some great ones we already have positions in, and we are looking to buy some more. Then we have some more coming on this weekend that look solid as well. We will have many stocks that we will be able to choose from that could lead the market higher, and I think they are going to lead the market higher.

We will continue to look for the moves to the upside. We will continue to find those stocks in good bases that are ready to move. How many stocks did I show you tonight that had this pennant pattern forming and are already breaking to the upside? That just goes to show you they are out there and are ready to move. We need to be able to have plays set up to take advantage of that. We will buy even more when they present themselves. There is not a lot of mystery here. It is just that the European issues are adding a little fog of war, so to speak, to the stock market. Overall if you have good patterns, you have resilience. We have seasonal trends and we have funds that want to play catch-up. We have the mix to push the indices higher. Maybe not to a breakout (after all, I do not think 2012 will be all that great economically), but definitely well into this upper-tier trading range. That would give us some really nice gains moving into the holidays. Everyone could use a better holiday this year. Maybe the market will help deliver that despite gasoline prices that will move higher because oil is near $100 a barrel.

Enjoy a beautiful weekend. I hope it is beautiful where you are and I hope it is going well for you. I will see you on Monday with more plays ready to go after a market that looks like it wants to move higher. Although it will be two steps forward and one step back. Overall, it is moving to the upside.

Have a great evening!

Support and Resistance

NASDAQ: Closed at 2678.75

2686 is the January 2011 closing low
The 200 day SMA at 2688
2706 to 2705 is the April 2011 low and the February 2011 and consolidation low (bottom of the trading range) 2723 to 2705 is the range of support at the bottom of the January to May trading range
2754 is the recent October 2011 high
2759 is the mid-May low
2762 is the February low
2796 is the February gap down point
2816 is the early April peak.
2825 is the 2007 closing peak.
2841 is the February 2011 peak
2862 is the 2007 peak
2879 is the July 2011 peak
2888 is the May 2011 peak

2676 is the January 2010 low
2645-2650ish from December 2010 consolidation
2643 is the September 2011 high
The 50 day EMA at 2613
2612 is the late August 2011 peak
2603 is the March 2011 intraday low (post-Japan low)
2599 is the June 2011 low
2593 is the November intraday high
2580 is the November 2010 closing high
2569 is the November gap up point through the April 2010 peak
2555 is the mid-August 2011 peak
2546 is the early September 2011 gap down point
2540 is the early November 2010 lower gap point
2532 is the early August gap down point
2512 is last week's gap down point
2469 is the November 2010 low
2331 from October 2010 low and the August 2011 intraday low
2305 from the August 2010 peak (summertime base)
2139 is the May and June 2010 low
2123 is the August 2010 gap down point
2100 from the August 2010 lows

S&P 500: Closed at 1263.85
The 200 day SMA at 1272
1275 is the January 2010 low, early January 2011 peak
1295 to 1294 is the April 2011 low and the February 2011 consolidation low (bottom of the trading range)
1313 from the August 2008 interim peak
1318.51 is the May low
1325-27 is the March 2008 closing low and the May 2006 peak.
1332 is the early March peak
1340 is the early April 2011 peak
1344 is the February 2011 peak is being challenged again
1357 is the July 2011 peak
1364 is the March 2007 low
1370 is the August 2007 low
1371 is the recent May 2011 peak

1258 is June 2011 intraday low
1255 is the late December 2010 consolidation range
1249 is the March 2011 low (post-Japan)
1235 is the mid-December 2010 consolidation low
1231 is the late August 2011 peak
1227 is the November 2010 peak
The 50 day EMA at 1221
1220 is the April 2010 peak
1209 is the mid-August 2011 high
1196 is the November 2010 consolidation peak
1178-1180 is the October 2010/November 2010 consolidation low
1131 - 1127 from August 2010 base peak.
1119 is the early August closing low
1109 is the mid-September 2010 gap up point
1101 is the August 2011 low
1075 is the October 2011 intraday low
1099 from the mid-July interim peak
1090 is the early September 2010 gap up point
1040 from the August 2010 lows and May/June 2010 lows
1011 is the summer 2010 low

Dow: Closed at 12,153.68
12,283 is the March 2011 peak
12,391 is the February 2011 peak
12,754 is the July intraday peak
12,876 is the May high
13,058 from the May 2008 peak on that bounce in the selling

12,110 from the March 2007 closing low
12,094 is the April 2011 low
The 200 day SMA at 11,976
The June low at 11,897 (closing)
11,893 from March 2008 closing low
11,867 from the August 2009 high and peak on that bounce in the selling.
11,734 from 11-98 peak
11,717 is the late August 2011 peak
The August low at 11,700
The 50 day EMA at 11,653
11,555 is the March low
11,452 is the November 2010 peak
11,178 from November 2010
10,978 is the bottom of the November 2010 consolidation
10,750 from September 2010
10,720 is the August closing low
10,705-710 from January 2010 peak
10,694-700 from August 2010 peak
9938 is the August 2010 low

Economic Calendar

November 7 - Monday
Consumer Credit, September (15:00): $7.4B actual versus $5.0B expected, -$9.7B prior (revised from -$9.5B)

November 9 - Wednesday
MBA Mortgage Index, 11/05 (7:00): 10.3% actual versus +0.2% prior
Wholesale Inventories, September (10:00): -0.1% actual versus 0.5% expected, 0.1% prior (revised from 0.4%)
Crude Inventories, 11/05 (10:30): -1.370M actual versus 1.826M prior

November 10 - Thursday
Initial Claims, 11/05 (8:30): 390K actual versus 400K expected, 400K prior (revised from 397K)
Continuing Claims, 10/29 (8:30): 3615K actual versus 3690K expected, 3707K prior (revised from 3683K)
Export Prices ex-ag., October (8:30): -1.5% actual versus -0.2% prior (revised from prior)
Import Prices ex-oil, October (8:30): -0.2% actual versus 0.2% prior
Trade Balance, September (8:30): -$43.1B actual versus -$45.9B expected, -$44.9B prior (revised from -$45.6B)
Treasury Budget, October (14:00): -$98.5B actual versus -$105B expected, -$140.4B prior

November 11 - Friday
Michigan Sentiment, Preliminary November (9:55): 64.2 actual versus 61.3 expected, 60.9 prior. Third straight monthly rise.

November 15 - Tuesday
PPI, October (8:30): -0.2% expected, 0.8% prior
Core PPI, October (8:30): 0.1% expected, 0.2% prior
Retail Sales, October (8:30): 0.4% expected, 1.1% prior
Retail Sales ex-auto, October (8:30): 0.2% expected, 0.6% prior
Empire Manufacturing, November (8:30): 0.0 expected, -8.48 prior
Business Inventories, September (10:00): 0.1% expected, 0.5% prior

November 16 - Wednesday
MBA Mortgage Index, 11/12 (7:00): 10.3% prior
CPI, October (8:30): 0.0% expected, 0.3% prior
Core CPI, October (8:30): 0.1% expected, 0.1% prior
Net Long-Term TIC Fl, September (9:00): $57.9B prior
Industrial Production, October (9:15): 0.4% expected, 0.2% prior
Capacity Utilization, October (9:15): 77.6% expected, 77.4% prior
NAHB Housing Market Survey, November (10:00): 18 expected, 18 prior
Crude Inventories, 11/12 (10:30): -1.370M prior

November 17 - Thursday
Initial Claims, 11/12 (8:30): 400K expected, 390K prior
Continuing Claims, 11/05 (8:30): 3648K expected, 3615K prior
Housing Starts, October (8:30): 603K expected, 658K prior
Building Permits, October (8:30): 603K expected, 594K prior
Philadelphia Fed, November (10:00): 7.5 expected, 8.7 prior

November 18 - Friday
Leading Indicators, October (10:00): 0.6% expected, 0.2% prior

By: Jon Johnson, Editor
Copyright 2011 | All Rights Reserved

Jon Johnson is the Editor of The Daily at

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