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Two Ways: Bear Market? What Bear Market?


Strengthen your portfolio in good times and bad.


S&P On a Tear

The S&P 500 is headed for its best monthly gain since 2000 as companies that beat consensus earnings forecasts outpace those that missed on a 10-to-1 basis. Bloomberg reports companies like Wells Fargo (WFC) and American Express (AXP) beat expectations by over 70%. These stocks helped boost the financial sector, sending the benchmark S&P 500 to a record monthly gain of 23%. The index fell to 666 in March, a 12-year low, but has since rebounded by 29%. It must gain another 3.3% to fully wipe out its 2009 loss.

See Professor Kevin Depew's Is the Market's Juice Worth the Squeeze?

From the Bull Pen: The odds are increasing that stocks are headed for a correction. But it would be bullish if the Retail Holders ETF (RTH) could successfully test its 200 DMA ($77.77). One can enter a position if and when the stock falls near that level with a tight sell stop below.

From the Bear Cave: One belief is that retail stocks have been on a tear because of record amounts of tax refunds. If so, this catalyst will soon end. Bears can consider Abercrombie & Fitch (ANF); one option is to fade (read: sell) into its 200 DMA (29.50). A buy stop can be set above that level.

Quick Check Around the World

Asian trading closed with the Hang Seng 3.77%, Nikkei 3.94%, Shanghai 0.38% and Taiwan 6.74%.

Glancing towards Europe, we see the CAC 1.53%, DAX 2.69%, FTSE 2.21%

As of 8:20 AM EST, S&P Futures are trading +13 to 882.16, and Nasdaq futures are +13 to 1399.00.

A Look at Commodities

Over in commodities, crude oil is trading +0.73 to 51.70 while gold is -8.9 at 891.60 this morning. Silver is -0.890 to 12.665 and copper +6.10 to 207.10.

The dollar index is -0.0300 to 84.6250.

On the Radar


08:30 Initial Jobless Claims came in at 631k vs 640k cons
08:30 Personal Income was -0.3% vs -0.2% cons
08:30 Personal Spending was -0.2% vs -0.1% cons and prior revised to +0.4% from +0.2%
08:30 Q1 Employment Cost Index was +0.3% vs 0.5% cons
09:45 Chicago PMI 34.0 cons

Click here to see the full trading radar.

Good luck today!

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No positions in stocks mentioned.

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