By Jeff Pierce
Now that the markets appear to have stabilized it’s OK to jump back in long trades…right? I believe the correct answer to be NO, based on that clear lack of leadership, declining volume on rallies, and the fact my timing signals and long term trend remain firmly down. Add on the fact that many weekly charts are starting to roll over on past leaders and it looks less and less likely that the Fed can print their way out of this one. I’m no permabear but I also don’t like how momentum stocks reacted over the last 3-4 weeks and without any new leadership where does one even think of putting their money to work on the long side?
I think it’s only a matter of time before the markets resume their selling and start the next leg down.
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In the past, we’ve discussed at length the structural problems facing Crude. So the pressure the energy markets are under, both from the demand and supply sides, should come as no surprise. This double whammy to the Crude market is not likely to be resolved overnight; demand-supply issues require time to work through a market.
Through hydraulic fracking and a massive influx of investment capital, the US has again become a major oil producer. But it’s the speed with which new supply from the US has come on line that has taken the market by surprise and rocked prices.
The 4 million plus barrels of extra oil that the US is suddenly producing is causing a problem for exporters like Saudi Arabia, who now need to find new markets for their oil. Most of the world’s oil is not sold in futures contracts for delivery one to three months out. Rather oil contracts are long term in nature, made over 1 to 3 year periods. And the competition for existing oil markets has been fierce, forcing suppliers to drastically cut their prices relative to spot.
As the price of oil begins to fall, oil producing nations, most of whom are ill-equipped to handle sub-$80 pricing, will likely try to offset the revenue lost through lower prices by raising their production. Saudi Arabia, the only nation capable of meaningfully cutting production, has stated that it will likely increase production to maintain its revenue levels. The other nations capable of possibly cutting production are Iraq, Iran and Venezuela, but all have economic issues that make any cut (without general consensus) very unlikely.
This should only perpetuate the glut of supply into 2015, setting the scene for much further declines in price as the markets are faced with continuing demand problems. If the European recession turns into a continent-wide event, its impacts on the world economy and, by extension, the demand for oil will put Crude prices under even more severe pressure.
Judging by the Daily chart reversal in the energy stocks in the past 2 days, there is a good chance that Crude has finally hit bottom. As outlined earlier, I’m not bullish on Crude’s longer term prospects, but the current sell-off has been severe, and is likely over for now. Given the uncertainty in the Crude markets, we need to see Crude form a Swing Low, followed by a close above the 10dma and a break of the trend-line. Once that occurs, it’s likely that a counter-trend bounce will move price back to the $90 level.
This sell-off has been extreme and much deeper than a standard ICL. The depth of the energy sector sell-off is on par with the last, big general market correction in 2011. The entire sector is now extremely oversold and should experience a decent rally during the next few weeks. But as in 2011, we don’t know is whether the current move down is just the beginning of a deeper decline. (more…)
By Chris Ebert
As the Bull market sent stock prices higher and higher over the past several years, readers here were provided with a unique perspective – a perspective that ignores the news of the day, ignores corporate fundamentals, and even ignores most common forms of technical analysis.
This perspective has managed to guide traders through the twists and turns of the Bull market, helping them to make rational trading decisions, avoiding unnecessary fear yet anticipating fear when fear is healthy, thus in better positions to reap profits in the stock market.
Now that the Bull market appears to have ended, the first Bear market in quite a few years seems likely to drive stock prices lower. The goal of the following analysis is to allow a trader to make a seamless transition to the new stock market environment. Many of the rules the market has followed for at least the last three years no longer apply. But the following analysis remains as valid as ever.
With a few minor adjustments to the usual analysis published here each week, a trader can be prepared for whatever the stock market can dish out. It begins, as always, with a look at three simple, ordinary option trades in order to find which of the three, if any, is currently profitable relative to the broad basket of stocks that make up the S&P 500 index. The broadness of the S&P 500 index makes it a good choice for analysis, since it represents the overall health of the entire stock market.
* All profits are calculated at expiration, as a percentage of the underlying SPY share price. SPY is an Exchange Traded Fund (ETF), the SPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust (NYSEARCA:SPY) that closely tracks the performance of the S&P 500 stock index. All options are at-the-money (ATM) when-opened 4 months (112 days) to expiration. (e.g. Profit of $6 per share on an expiring Long Call would represent a 3% profit if $SPY was trading at $200, regardless of whether the call premium itself actually increased 50%, 100% or more)
Once it is known what types of options trades are currently profitable, and which are not, it can be determined what type of stock market (more…)