End of Day Update:
The difference a day makes. Monday we opened strong, yet crumbled into the close. Tuesday we fell sharply in the first hour of trade, but bounced decisively into the green by the end of the day. This is the definition of erratic and indecisive.
Bulls are pleased we bounced off of the 50dma and found support at 2,100. The morning’s 15-point plunge got everyone’s attention, but it wasn’t enough to rattle owners’ confidence and they continued holding despite the volatility. No matter what is going on, when owners don’t want to sell, we run out of supply and bounce. Clearly that’s what happened today.
The challenge for the speculator is figuring out what comes next. Monday’s implosion from all-time highs was ominously bearish. Yet today’s decisive rebound off of support is reassuringly bullish.
The reason this market isn’t going anywhere is because no one is changing their mind. We rally when bears warm up to the market and buy it. We selloff when bulls get nervous and dump stock. When both sides are equally stubborn, we don’t go anywhere.
The trade of the year is betting against these moves. Earlier we’d string together several up or down days before reversing, but lately these have been one-day moves. While mostly tongue-in-cheek, the best trading advice is “If you have profits, take them. If you have losses, wait a day and then sell for a profit.”
While there is a lot of noise this week regarding the Fed’s monthly meeting, using recent history as a guild, it seems highly unlikely bulls will sell the headline or bears will buy the news. This is a stubborn bunch and most likely it will take something new and unexpected to break this logjam. When and which direction is anyone’s guess, but until then keep buying weakness and selling strength.
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Jani Ziedins (pronounced Ya-nee) is a full-time investor and writer who has successfully traded stocks and options for more than a decade. He earned a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from the Colorado School of Mines and an MBA and M.S. Marketing from the University of Colorado Denver. His prior professional experience includes manufacturing engineering at Fortune 500 companies, structural engineering, small business consultant, collegiate instructor, and managing investment real estate. He is now fortunate enough to trade full-time from home, affording him the luxury of spending extra time with his wife and two young children.