Saturday, November 17, 2007

On Thursday I Warned Of An Oversold Rally And We Got It; Stock Indexes Put In A Bullish Intraday Reversal To Close Higher On Higher Volume (No Follow-

I expected an oversold rally starting on Friday and we got it. Intraday I said that the market could close at its HOD and it darn near did. Since the market is doing exactly what TA says it should be doing at this point, I will listen to the market and keep my shorts small from here on out until another new downtrend starts or a clear top is put in with a lot of distribution days after the Thanksgiving rally (it isn't certain but it almost always happens and the conditions are setup for it). Don't cover your shorts, if the market rallies a few hundred points here on the DJIA, and your shorts continue to move lower or do not move up. Those are the weak stocks you want to continue to hold on to. But if you have an IEX in your short port, you should be selling it all.

Today's gains came on a pickup in volume but it is always possible that the increase in volume was options related. However, it really does not matter as today's gains were under 1% so it is impossible for today to count as a follow-through day. Instead we will be entering day five of a rally attempt on Monday. I want everyone to remember that you usually do NOT get a strong market follow-through so soon after such strong selling. The best bottoms are NOT put in one month after the selling starts. So if we do get a follow-through day sometime next week make sure you see a ton of nice stocks setting up in bases or breaking out of sound bases in top industry groups.

If you do not see that, the chances that the rally will fail will be substantially higher. Even if we do continue to get a rally here, due to the oversold conditions, traders must realize that it is more than likely that rallies will be sold here as we have had a lot of selling in the indexes with very little accumulation. That is why these indexes all carry a D- to E rating in IBD. There is nothing out there doing well, except for the Defense index and Medical related stocks. This is a sign of a weak market. These industries have been doing well all year and it is probably in anticipation of a further weakening market.

As this market moves along it appears to me that we may be a little to oversold to be shorting stocks right now. However, there are few longs that are working out right now. Some of the better quality stocks recently have been IMA, VMSI, and XNPT the past three days. If you notice they are all related to the medical field. These stocks are starting to show up all over my long scans. That combined with a lot of low volume stocks is something my scans only see during rough periods of the market. Even during pullbacks the past few years there have not been a lot of these stocks on the scans. When they did show up in 2005 and 2006 they also were accompanied by a lot of stocks in shipping, oil, tech, and other leading sectors. Now it seems like medical stocks are the only stocks that once they breakout now they work.

Three out of four stocks follow the general trend of the market, so it is not smart going long here anyways. Unless your three losses are each under 5% and your one winners is always 20% or more. Since this is very doable in a bear market this is how I operate. I keep losses much tighter and risk less money. However, when stocks like IMA show up, I would rather be proven wrong than sit back and miss it. If you have seen stocks like QSC recently you know the hot money is moving into this are of the market. Breakouts will work here. However, great stocks like FNDT, EXLS, and other longs that I have taken in other industries have done very poorly. That correlates perfectly with the market.

So if you go long, make sure you go long a medical stock. Unless that chart is loaded with accumulation and max green BOP I recommend staying far away. Going short low volume rallies seems to be the right play now. When you see all these bank stocks dropping like rocks, old leading stocks top out, new lows trump new highs, and everyone on CNBC is telling you to buy the dips, I believe it is best to be cautious and raise a lot of cash.

If anything else, I don't care who you are, I would like you to have at least 25% cash. Having this cash on hand is a lot better than being long an FDX or a SBUX while you wait for the market to hit a bottom, follow-through, and then have leading stocks break out. It is never good for former leading stocks to break down all over the place in every industry. Don't get fooled into buying this rally with you going on full margin. Always wait for a follow-through and make sure real great quality stocks from tight quiet bases are breaking out.

Something makes me a bit uneasy about the market right now. I am sitting with a lot of longs that have nice patterns and look like they are going to move a lot higher. At the same time I have a lot of shorts that have been working very well and have been producing some nice gains. However, since I was so long (which allowed me to make some great gains) it has been hard to get to a point where the gains in the shorts kill the losses in the longs. However, maybe a testament to my stock picking ability recently I have had a series of days where when the market is higher my longs do great and my shorts are quiet and when the market is down my shorts do great and my longs are quiet. Since the first week, where I lost 15%, I have been able to recollect 5% of it. This in a market where most people are losing money. And I watch a lot of CNBC (like I always do when I feel we are near a top) and know that a lot of people are losing money because I hear about it constantly.

Thanks to my stock picking ability and me keeping new longs very small right now, I am no longer in the money losing camp. Even though I still have a lot of longs they are all down over 50% from where they were originally bought and my shorts have recently gotten larger. You have to realize that if 1 out of 4 stocks go up in a bear market and I pick all of the 1 out of 4 that go up and I hit a ton of the 3 out of 4 that go down, even with 25% plus cash, you are going to kill 95% of all traders and kill 99% of all mutual funds who must remain long while the market goes lower.

I know a lot of you might think that my bias to the downside is a bit too much. And I have to admit I have been wrestling with that feeling too. However, I know history, and I know that when I see defensive, medical, and low volume stocks moving higher that the market is in trouble. The SP 600 and Russell 200 always lead the market higher and lower and this time it looks no different as both small cap indexes RS lines are putting in very bearish divergences and the stocks are well below the 50 and 200 day moving averages.

The fact that all the leaders have been taken out, though, is the biggest one. It is still possible due to all the fanfare that GOOG, RIMM, AAPL, and BIDU could hit new highs. However, I believe that would bring the last of the suckers in and would be a gift to short sellers. I really hope I am wrong and I wouldn't mind being wrong so I could go long pretty charts again and make money. But I find it hard to happen when they get everything. The very last speculative group they hit was the solar stocks. When they did that I thought it was going to get bad. But FSLR has shaped up and looks good again but if you look at JASO and SPWR on an arithmetic chart you can clearly see that after a huge runup they made a VERY HUGE VOLUME blowoff. FSLR may have more to go but the other leaders are saying it is over. I could be wrong, yes. But don't forget, I HAVE BEEN A BULL SINCE OCTOBER 2002 WITH STOCKS LIKE SSYS GRMN SOHU SINA NTES AND WAS VERY LONG AFTER THE MARCH 2003 FOLLOW-THROUGH AND WAS LONG TASR AND REAPED THE HUGE NEAR 2000% GAIN IN IT.

The fact that I believe we could be topping now can not be ignored. You can go back to and read my 2004, 2005, and 2006 postings. In 2004 and 2005 I wasn't worried about any pullback at all because I ALWAYS had very green charts all over the place during the pullbacks. When I was offered a job to manage the money of a Chicago, IL based firm in 2005, the current manager believed the market was over; he was certain of it-so much so he was depressed. I told him not to worry that there were a ton of great looking bases and that the market had more to go. Eventually we parted ways. He sold his stocks...I found a 550% surprise in ERS! Not so bad!

In 2006, I believed it was very possible for us to be topping. But after the first few days of selling off, it became clear leading stocks were under no pressure. As the market started to bottom a lot of charts showed up and while some of the smartest guys on wall street and almost 100% of the commentators who work with TA on were boo-hooing the August move higher, I was not enjoying it but not denying that we had a lot of nice charts. Next thing you know we have HRZ (my biggest winner from that year to this year), AFSI, and TESO giving us huge high reward/low risk major gains. Those three stocks on full margin were blessings. And when this nasty bear is over, we will have more HRZ stocks one day.

In February of 2007, I believed we were topping because of China and all the weakness I started seeing in our market's internals. However, like I said earlier, AFSI and TESO came out of that so it wasn't that bad at all. This time though, we have had FNDT fail, EXLS fail, SNDA fail, ESEA fail, INXI fail, BLL fail, and many others. While all of that is going on, check out charts like IAR, ETFC, and YRCW. The play on this market right now, to make the big money, is shorting stocks.

There are a lot of technical aspects of this market that indicate that we should continue to get an oversold rally on the short-term. I did let everyone know that I expected one after Thursday's close. Some of the things that came to my attention the past few days that lead me to believe that the rally will continue were listed yesterday:

The put/call ratio did spike to 1.12 at the close today. And even though I do not see any fear in this market with the VIX being at 28, the fact that the put/call ratio did spike to 1.12 indicates that there is a little bit of fear creeping into this market. However, it is not the bottom kind of fear. That fear is a spike to 1.5.

The new highs to new lows is also another item that has recently caught my interest. When we began to selloff we consistently saw new lows over 300 on the way down with new highs staying under 100. Now we continue to have new highs around the 40-60 area but the new lows have fallen to 200 or lower the past three days. So the fact that there are not as many stocks hitting new lows despite the continuation of selling indicates that we are a bit oversold.

The two final things that make me think we are oversold is that if the S&P 500 closes down for the week this will be the first time since early 2004 that the S&P 500 has fallen for five consecutive weeks. At the same time, the percentage of stocks below their 40-day moving average is hovering right around 20% and the stocks below their 200-day moving average is around 30%. Though this is far from a “real bottom” extreme reading (10% for the 40-dma and 20% for the 200 dma), it is still very oversold. The bottom line: we should expect a bounce.

These are all the reasons that make me believe we will continue to see higher prices next week. Hopefully, the higher prices, will help my current long holdings blastoff to huge gains on huge volume so I can take some more in and at the same time keep my shorts quiet where if they do rally they do it on low volume and on a little price gain. So even with this possible oversold bounce I am not going to take in all my shorts. I have taken profits on the ones down a lot to preserve some of the gains and have eliminated the weak shorts that did not move lower. So even if we do rally I pray that most hold below the 50 and 200 day moving average. The put/call ratio did spike again to 1.19 so there is enough fear in the market where it is possible I might lose some shorts. However, if the stocks are really broken they will not bounce with the market.

If we do not get a short-covering oversold rally and we instead continue to selloff, then it will be all that much smarter to not be in longs and to be short and cash heavy. I do not think moving lower here would be bullish for the market in the long run as a bottom here would only delay the inevitable that we have been delaying since February of this year. This market has continued to weaken all year long with the market getting more and more narrow as we go along. Now it is only a few handful of leading stocks taking care of the other thousands that are falling. A bounce here will relieve the oversold pressure so that eventually the natural course of selling resumes.

I am sorry I don't have better news. I have been a bull since 2002. Where have you been? I was a bear and made a lot of money in 2000-2002. So just because we might be done with the 1000% gains in AAPL (which there still might be more to come) doesn't mean that there aren't going to be a lot of stocks to short. These old leaders have to come down eventually and if you think pure IPO crap like OZM isn't going to see the single digits you are seriously fooling yourself. They don't pump out this crap at the start of incredible bull markets. This crap comes to market when you have to get it out before it is too late and can't be brought to market cause it would crash straight down in a straight line. The crap IPOs are now being brought to market. The quality has passed in the IPO market and the stock market.

Cash is king. Aloha and I will see you in the chat room.

P.S.: If any of you reading this blog remember the Gary B. Smith TA articles from realmoney/ back in the late 90s to about 2004 or 2005 (I can't remember) you might remember how simple and great they were. It led to GBS getting a job on FoxNews and ended up with him leaving to run money at a hedge fund. If you don't remember those articles, I recommend going back to the archives on thestreet/ and go over them. I would love to bring them back and have been trying my best to get those articles back. I would love to write them and it would done very similar with the markets analyzed every day and 6 stocks a night. Price, volume, moving averages, and support/resistance would be the theme. If you think that you would like to see that again on send an email to Kristin Bentz and tell her you want to see the GBS articles again and that you want me to write them. I would love to bring those articles back. I have missed them and believe the site's TA is turning to crap. It is time to bring in someone who maybe is a little different but at least can offer stock picks that make their readers money.

No comments: