Free After-Hours Analysis
The S&P 500 gapped 1.5% higher at the open, reaching the highest levels since early March. Unfortunately, that was as good as it got and prices skidded back to breakeven in the first two hours of trade. And just as concerning, prices eventually finished near day’s lows.
While the market only gave up a seemingly trivial 0.5% and it remains just under recent highs, it is never good to see the market retreat from a push to new highs. Rather than embrace this strength, traders were more inclined to take profits. That’s the first real sign we’ve seen this rally could finally be running out of enthusiastic buyers willing to keep chasing prices even higher.
Anything can happen on any given day and we shouldn’t read too much into a single day’s price action. But this fizzle is definitely enough to give us pause. And the significance increases exponentially with each additional piece of concerning information we get over the next few days. Maybe the market shrugs this off tomorrow and prices continue rallying. But if we see further weakness develop over the next day or two, this could finally be the start of the long-awaited pullback.
Now I want to be clear, I’m most definitely not calling for a big crash. This market is trading really well and at this point we have no reason to doubt the sustainability of this larger rebound. But at the same time, everyone knows even strong markets move in waves and it is only time before this one experiences a perfectly normal and healthy pullback to support. Maybe this is finally that time. Or maybe this turns into something bigger. Lucky for us, both trades start the same.
If we see more intraday rallies fall victim to waves of profit-taking over the next few days, that is the first signs demand is falling off. If prices bounce and close strong, all is forgiven and forgotten. But if prices keep closing weak, that tells us the pullback is finally upon us. Another midday fizzle gives us a short entry and if prices close near the daily lows, it is worth holding a small short position overnight. But as I said earlier, close strong close and all short trades are off. If this turns out to be another false alarm, no big deal. We cover and try again next time.
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Tags: S&P 500 Nasdaq $SPY $SPX $QQQ $IWM
Jani Ziedins (pronounced Ya-nee) is a full-time investor and financial analyst that has successfully traded stocks and options for nearly three decades. He has an undergraduate engineering degree from the Colorado School of Mines and two graduate business degrees from the University of Colorado Denver. His prior professional experience includes engineering at Fortune 500 companies, small business consulting, 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 children.