Wednesday was another rocky session for the S&P 500 and the index lost half a percent. That makes four down days out of the last five sessions.
Interest rate headlines continue dominating the financial press. That said, the reactionary selling has been relatively constrained and the index is only marginally below last week’s record highs.
The thing to remember about stock market crashes is they are breathtakingly quick. In comparison, we’ve been dealing with bond yield headlines all month, yet here we are within 2% of all-time highs. That hardly qualifies as panic selling.
But while the rally still appears to be in good shape, we always need to have our line in the sand. While this dip will most likely bounce like all of the other dips that came before it, there are no guarantees in the market.
The greatest advantage we have as independent traders is the nimbleness of our size. There is no reason to hold a position all the way down given how effortless it is for us to sell and buy back in.
While picking stops is never easy, spreading stops across a range helps minimize indecision and second-guessing. Pick a high point, a low point, and something in between. This way you are locking in some profits quickly and you are giving other positions a little extra room to avoid a routine shakeout.
If prices bounce quickly, only a small portion of your position was shaken out. If prices fall further, you got out at higher levels and can actually take advantage of buying the bigger discounts.
The most important thing is as soon as you get dumped out, start looking for the next buying opportunity to get back in. Many times the pullback proves to be a false alarm and the bounce can be within days if not hours.
While riding through whipsaws is annoying, I’d much rather deal with that minor inconvenience than suffer a large loss by stubbornly holding a larger dip that doesn’t bounce.
It was another brutal session for GME. The stock lost 1/3 of its value and odds are it will never get back above $200 ever again.
As much as the cheerleaders are willing this to go higher, it seems everyone who wants to pay $200 for a $20 stock has already bought it and there are no other fools left to keep pushing prices higher.
Volatility will remain off the chart for a while but expect every dip make a lower-low and every bounce to make a lower-high.
If a person didn’t sell this latest echo, they have no one to blame but themselves and their greedy impulses.
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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.