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Apple a Bit Rotten; Exxon Weakens


Old favorites suffer setbacks.


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Now that bulls have had their slice of humble pie, the question is: Where do we go from here?

I always find it helpful to back out the charts quite a bit - to mute the noise and gain perspective on what's taking place. Unfortunately, when I do, what I find ain't pretty.

The financials are the first area of concern, as noted by the XLF below. The sector has yet to get back into its recent channel, and, while other major averages broke, the XLF was merely bouncing hard off lows.

The jury is still out, but this recent failure at the 50-day mark has me skeptical.

Click to enlarge

On the tech side, old-time favorites also continue to look prone to further weakness with Apple (AAPL) leading the bunch. The stock has been stuck in a consolidation phase since early October and can't seem to break back above the important level of $98. The latest slide seems to be picking up volume, and any break back below the $85 level would send this one toward the 60s.

Click to enlarge

Last but not least, Exxon Mobil (XOM), the titanic of the group. Through all the credit mess and commodity debacle, Exxon has remained a rock - trading not far off recent highs put in 2007. Unfortunately, however, it looks as if the recent bounce is running out of steam, and as we know, multi-year channel breaks don't drift off easily into the night. Many believe this has been the general market tell, and the current picture isn't too inspiring.

Click to enlarge

I've been short Exxon and Apple for some time now, holding through the gyrations and taking my fair share of criticism, however until these longer term charts change, I'll remain a short and look to add on further weakness.

Rather than follow the noise traders, follow the tape - it's much easier and a heck of a lot less annoying.

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