As the markets end the month of April we’ve seen quite a bit of volatility. Early in the month we rendered a historical high at 1897 then declined all the way down to 1814. The market has now rebounded and is trading near the highs. A close above 1865.20 today will set the tone for a further bullish move into early May. It would take a close under 1843.85 to signal a bearish tone and suggest a major top is forming.
Today there should be plenty of action with GDP being released along with the ADP employment numbers. And to top that off we have the FOMC statement to be released around 2 PM Eastern Time today offering plenty of possibilities for huge volatility again today. The Fed is not expected to make any drastic statements. However, as I mentioned a couple days ago, Janet Yellen has not done a great job in communicating what the Fed is trying to do. I also discussed in the Market Thunder broadcast the other day that the Fed is attempting to change the dialogue from quantitative easing to qualitative adjustments. This posturing may work but it is going to take at least two more quarters for market participants to buy into any type of rhetoric coming out of the Fed.
The key point today on the downside is 1869.30. If this level is penetrated then we could see the market moving back toward the 1860.25/1850 levels. There is currently only a 30% probability for this level to be penetrated. On the upside, the critical level is 1882.60. This is a number that has been discussed several times over the past eight weeks. Each time we have gotten above this level we have failed to close above it and the market has traded back into the range.
The trading band that we have been stuck in between 1841/1882 continues. It looks like it could be tested today depending on the massive amount of news and emotion that is likely to come out of the trading session today.
The intermediate charts suggest that a higher close on the week will signal a move that suggests that we will retest the 1897 highs with a target range right now of 1890.60/1903.65.
Please make sure to tune into the Market Thunder session at Noon Eastern Time today for further details.
Today will also be our first broadcast of Process Warriors which will be at 3:00 PM Eastern Time.
The market will open lower but is expected to close higher as long as it stays above the 1869.30 number.
Today’s Key Levels
|Prior Close||1878.33 +8.90|
Yesterday’s action saw the market trade up early to test the RX level. After the first hour of trading, the market fell down to the extreme support at 1850.85 with an intraday low of 1850.61. The market reversed sharply from there, rallying to close higher on the session.
This reversal pattern suggests that if the market can continue higher today and close over 1879.15 it will continue to test the upper end of this range in the next 2 to 3 sessions. PPM1 has increased to .29 which suggests a minor trend is in place and that there is a solid bid. That should keep the market above 1863.90. A close below this level would suggest that the market would decline back toward the lows of yesterday but there’s currently only a 30% probability for that to occur.
Should the market close above the 1884.25 level then a retest of the old highs at 1897 will be signaled with a target range between 1890.60/1903.65.
There is still a substantial amount news to be released over the next two sessions. This will likely affect the markets and we could see the same type of action we saw yesterday with sharp intraday swings as the three-day average range has now increased back to 19.40. This had contracted back below 10 which is usually a sign that the market is going to make a directional move and with yesterday’s reversal it does appear that this move will be higher for the next 2 to 3 sessions.
On the downside today 1859.70 is critical. Should the market penetrate this level then we would retest the bottom of yesterday’s range at 1850.
The market should open higher, with a 60 percent probability to close higher, should the market remain above the 1859.70 level today.
Today’s Key Levels
|Prior Close||1869.43 +6.03|
Market OverviewYTD Performance S&P 500 Pacing
Will Yellen Confuse or Clarify…
This week will be a huge week as there are over 120 S&P stocks reporting earnings, a Federal Reserve meeting on employment and a plethora of economic reports. Monday is the quietest day with pending home sales to be released, Tuesday the FOMC meeting begins, Case Schiller, Consumer Confidence. Wednesday has the ADP employment report and the FOMC meeting announcement. Thursday has the Gallup US payroll to population report, jobless claims, Yellen speaks, PMI manufacturing, construction spending. Finally, Friday ends the week with the employment situation and factory orders. And pending in the background is a continued geopolitical risk with the Ukraine situation unfolding. That’s a lot to deal with.
So whether or not the old adage sell in May and go away works out, we will be seeing the beginning of a new month on Thursday. I continued to discuss over the past several months that my expectations are that there will be a major top occurring in Q2. So sometime in the next two months, if not already, we will see a major high. While maybe the fundamentals will continue to improve slightly, will that really equate in higher stock prices? For the most part the market anticipates 6 to 9 months ahead of the economy. With the Fed still keeping an accommodative stance, they are likely to keep some support under the market. But the discussion in the Fed has gone from quantitative easing to qualitative. This certainly has set the tone for a different dialogue as our new Fed chairperson continues to evolve in her job.
The past two Fed meetings have really confused the market more than it has helped to clarify what the Fed stance really is. The hope by most market participants is that there will be more clarity in this FOMC announcement than in the previous two. As I have said before, we are continuing to get a handle on how Janet Yellen will posture and communicate to the financial community.
From a VPM standpoint we continue to see the percent bullish decline about 1% to 46.33%. We continue to remain above the critical level of 42%. However, there are more trends beginning to fail setting the tone for further declines in the market.
SP 500 for the week of 04/21/2014
Looking back on last week
Monday’s market started higher and then traded back to the flat line before rallying into the close with the S&P finishing up 0.4%, posting its fifth consecutive gain. The market reopened after the long three-day weekend and while it did close positive, it continued to trade with a very low volume and thin posture as a New York Stock Exchange registered only 591 million shares.
Tuesday was able to continue higher throughout the session. However, in the final hour there was some selling to erase some of the daily gains. Still the S&P was up for the sixth consecutive session as it added 0.4%. The leaders on the day were Consumer Discretionary and Healthcare as they displayed strength right out of the gate helping the sentiment to stay positive for the entire session. Even Biotech was able to have a good strong session to keep market sentiment positive.
The market opened higher but unfolded in a very choppy session as the market hovered in negative territory for most of the day. The S&P was down 0.22% but the NASDAQ was the weakest down 0.8% and lagged throughout the session. The technology sector was also week as it was down 0.9% as it was profit taking in Apple, Google and Microsoft.
Thursday’s session opened flat and traded lower early in the session, managing to rally midsession to print the intraday highs. The morning hour weakness was triggered by news that Russia had commenced its military exercises on the Ukrainian border. There was some flight to quality as gold saw a bid come in and treasuries moved down to 2.69%. The technology sector found a pretty good bid as it moved up 1.1% on the day. This helped the S&P to stage a 0.17% gain.
Markets were under pressure from the very beginning of the session on Friday and continued to gain downward momentum as each hour unfolded. The downside momentum peaked around midsession where the market consolidated briefly before rendering new lows in the last hour. The NASDAQ lost 1.8%, widening the loss for the month to 2.9%. The S&P was down 0.8%, swinging the index to a 0.5% loss month to date. Last week the market had completed approximately 250 of the S&P 500 stocks reporting showing that 68% was better than expected while 18% were as expected and about 15% underperforming. As usual the issue has been more about forward looking guidance and of the stocks that had been underperforming, some of them were key bellwethers.
S&P 500 for 04/25/14
S&P 500 for 04/25/14
Friday’s action continued to trade sharply lower after the open. The market was able to penetrate the extreme support at 1866.45 with an intraday low of 1859.70. As I had mentioned in Friday’s commentary, the expectation was for a possible decline to the 1855/1841 zone. This continues to be the expectation. We should see a further decline toward the targets now of 1852.60/1840.55 for the week.
The critical level today is 1857.10. Should this level be penetrated, a decline toward the 1852.60/1850.85 level will be signaled. On the upside there is substantial resistance between 1869.70/1873.00. A penetration of 1873 would suggest a further rally toward 1886.30 as an extreme for the week. This week is likely to be highly volatile depending on the effects of all of the news around the FOMC and other elements that are coming to market this week.
The intermediate charts continue to show some loss of momentum. Should this week close below 1854.80 then it suggests a further decline toward the 1828.45/1817.70 levels. As I’ve mentioned several times the critical level on the downside is at 1795. A penetration of this level would indicate a much exaggerated decline. It would also signal that a major top is in place.
As I have discussed on the Market Thunder broadcast in detail, the long-term or monthly charts continue to be positive while the intermediate is neutral and short-term have turned negative as of Friday.
The market should open higher, with a 60 percent probability to close higher, should the market remain above the 1860.45 level today.
This Week’s Key Levels
|Prior Close||1863.40 -15.21|
Today’s Key Levels
|Prior Close||1863.40 -1.45|
Markets Continue Sidewise…
Yesterday’s action traded into the resistance found between 1882 and 1886 with an intraday high of 1884.06. The market backed off of these highs in the last hour of trading to finish at 1878.61.
With today being a weekly close, it will be necessary for the market to remain above 1877.85 at the close for a bullish continuation for next week. A close under 1870.10 will suggest a negative start for next week.
As I mentioned in Monday’s comments, earnings reports should be the primary driver. Yesterday we saw Apple lead the way trading up over 8%. However, there was a very muted performance from the market standpoint. There are still geopolitical concerns with the Ukraine situation. It continues to remain in the background keeping traders cautious.
The configuration suggests that a minor top is forming here. A penetration today of 1870.50 will signal lower prices toward the 1855/1841 area over the next 3 to 5 sessions. It is still necessary for a close over 1882.60 to signal a retest of the historical highs at 1897.27. There seems to be little that is able to drive the market sentiment to push the market higher or lower at this time. I expect that the sideways trading range between 1882 /1841 will continue again next week.
Make sure to join us for Market Thunder at 12:00 Noon Eastern Time, 9:00 AM Pacific Time. http://www.ustream.tv/channel/vpm-partners
The market should open flat to lower, with a 60 percent probability to close lower, should the market remain below the 1883.95 level today.
Today’s Key Levels
|Prior Close||1878.61 +3.22|
Not only did Apple beat their earnings, they announced a seven for one split this has triggered an 8% rally. As a result, the stock and the futures markets are up across the board. But looking at the technical situation we are right back to where we were two days ago. The only new thing this happened is that the three-day range indicator has contracted down below 10 to 8.96.
Typically, when this occurs this is a prelude to the next volatility spike in price movement. With the market moving up sharply from the 1814 level over the last six days is the next movement down?
With the momentum that was generated from the sharp rally off the lows last Monday, there continues to be a slight bias to the upside. A penetration today below 1870.90 would be enough to signal a further decline and the possibility of completing the three day decline that I discussed in yesterday’s comments. Should this be the case, we could see the market continue to decline to around the 1855/1841 levels.
While hoping not to sound like a broken record, the 1882 level on the upside is the pivot point to signal the market to go back into an uptrend and rally to a minimum of the 1890.60 level. As I have been discussing over the last two sessions, there continues to be an expectation for the markets to move toward the 1890 level with an extreme of 1903 at this time.
The market has spent the last 6 to 8 weeks in a sideways range. It becomes more difficult to predict the direction the market will take once it breaks out of the pattern in these protracted configurations. It is not a complete flip of a coin as there is some bias that we can look at to determine what this next move will look like.
The market remains above key support levels on the longer-term charts having a bias to the upside. There could be one more attempt at the 1903/1905 levels. However, a failure at this time to get above these levels would set the tone for a more substantial decline.
As I discussed over the last several months, I continue to expect that we will see a top sometime in Q2. While this is a long ways to go before we finish this quarter, there continues to be some questions that are coming into the markets. The earnings reports are showing a bit of an improvement as we are seeing more beats with the larger companies. However, economics continue to be very mixed with housing starts and other manufacturing measures. While in some cases there is a showing of better-than-expected results then are other cases that are coming in as expected or disappointing at best.
Forward-looking expectations continue to be mixed. At this time there is no way to determine other than through a breakout probability with the key points being 1841 on the downside and 1882 in the upside. Until we see a clear close above either of these levels, the markets will remain in this sideways pattern.
I will go over these patterns in detail tomorrow in Friday’s Market Thunder broadcast at 12:00 noon Eastern Time. Please make sure to tune in or watch the video after the show. This session is a replacement for the normal Thursday morning Podcast. It will be an hour long live webcast that will review the markets. Click here to watch Market Thunder.
The market should open higher, with a 60 percent probability to close lower, should the market remain below the 1882.25 level today.
Today’s Key Levels
|Prior Close||1875.39 -4.16|
Yesterday’s action continued the trek higher as the S&P 500 traded toward the extreme for the sequence at the 1890.60 level. The pattern has continued to extend but is nearing completion. Typically, the bottom patterns that has formed since the 1814 level last Monday will unfold in 5 to 8 day pattern and then there will be a retracement of approximately 40 to 50% once this sequence is completed. The target zone is the 1890.60/1903.65 zone. This would represent a retest of the historical highs at 1896. Should a new high be rendered, then there is likely to be selling pressure to come in at these levels.
As I mentioned in yesterday’s commentary, the 1843 level is the key pivot area. We could see the market fall back into the trading pattern between the 1843/1882 levels. While the market did penetrate 1882 yesterday with an intraday high of 1884.89, it was not able to close above this level again. If you recall, the last time the markets traded at these levels it could not render a close above this key level of 1882. Failure to do so in this pattern would set up a 3 to 5 day decline.
The three-day average range has contracted back to 11.30. This suggests that we are very close to another spike in volatility. This will likely be to the downside if we fail to close over 1882.40. While a close above 1882.40 will signal a continuation up toward 1903.65 with the possibility to extend should we get a close above this level, right now that is only a 30% probability.
For now, expect a minor top to form followed by a 3 to 5 day decline to remain above the 1843/1841 levels.
The market should open flat to lower, with a 60 percent probability to close lower, should the market remain below the 1885.20 level today.
Today’s Key Levels
|Prior Close||1879.55 +7.66|
Yesterday’s action saw the market open slightly higher and drift in the first couple hours of trading. The pattern that has been unfolding for the past four sessions is the market will open higher, drift lower and then rally in the last two hours. That was the case again yesterday. The configuration suggests that we are likely to complete an upward sequence today with the market remaining below the 1878.20 level. Should the market remain below this level and close lower, we should see a 2 to 3 day decline back toward the 1853/1839 levels.
The short-term momentum has increased slightly. This suggests that the decline, should it materialize, will be shallow and remain above the 1846.00 level. Should this pattern unfold, it is likely to see a resumption to the upside with another five sessions higher, trading toward the 1890/1903 levels. As this market continues to chop in the 1800s level, momentum on an intermediate basis continues to dissipate. This suggests that the markets are likely to set up an intermediate top. However, it will still take a close below 1795 to confirm that a top is in place.
As I have mentioned several times, the intermediate pattern is sideways. The short-term has now turned moderately higher. The long-term continues to be in a robust uptrend with key support levels down around the 1740/1675 levels. This pattern is likely to continue through the end of the month. And as we come into May, we should start to see some back filling in this market if it’s unable to close above the 1905 level by the end of the second week of May.
The key level on the downside today is 1865.60. A penetration of this level will confirm a further decline toward the levels I just mention at 1853/1846.
The market should open flat to lower, with a 60 percent probability to close lower, should the market remain below the 1878.20 level today.
Today’s Key Levels
|Prior Close||1871.89 +7.04|