Why smart money is skipping next week

By Jani Ziedins | End of Day Analysis

Nov 16

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The S&P 500 finished Tuesday’s session up a tenth of a percent as it continues to digest the huge rebound from the October lows.

Stocks fall quickly from overbought and unsustainable levels. While holding gains for two sessions is not conclusive, it demonstrates there is some support for these prices. And the longer we stay here, the more real they become.

That said, as good as the market looks, I’m not one to look a gift horse in the mouth. The market gave me huge profits over the last three weeks, and I won’t allow myself to get greedy by asking for even more. As I wrote Wednesday evening, I locked in some really nice profits:

I’m not calling this a top and the index’s momentum could easily push us higher for a few more days, but common sense tells us the rewards above our heads are far smaller than the risks underneath us.

This has been a great trade, but all good things come to an end. We only make money when we sell our best trades, and this is the time to be collecting some very well-earned profits.

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Next week is Thanksgiving, and most big money managers will be on vacation, so we shouldn’t expect a lot of buying. The junior associates manning the desks don’t have the authority to initiate new positions, so it should be a quiet week.

That said, without big money’s guiding hand, that does give emotional retail traders more influence. Lucky for us, these impulsive traders have small accounts and can’t drive the market very far, but they can inject some volatility if they get whipped up into a frenzy.

Limited upside and elevated risks for increased volatility mean this is a great time to watch from the sidelines. Spend next week with friends and family, not obsessing over whether ten points up or down is the start of the next big move. There will be plenty of trading opportunities in the final weeks of the year. Enjoy our recent run of good luck and take some time off.

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About the Author

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.