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October 20, 2008

Triangle Watch

Yawn. What a boring day. Equities meandered higher by a mere 4.8%. Compared to recent action, that's downright lethargic! On the technical front, not a whole lot changed: we're still on triangle watch. My best guess for tomorrow is we gap higher on the open, test the upper bound early in the day, then head steadily lower into the close. Alternatively, we gap lower, fill that gap on the way to an upper boundary test, then reverse lower into the close.

index chart

Both scenarios fit the bearish case, and either way, I'll be shorting a kiss of the upper boundary with a stop just a hop and a skip outside. There are, of course, other possible paths for the market, but if any of them occur, I won't be trading. I'll just assimilate such action into a new plan.

On the bullish side, stock indexes went out on their highs of the session. However, volume dried up precipitously, so I'm not weighing the high close too heavily into my thinking. Please note that it is entirely possible the market has already put in an intermediate-term bottom. If the SPX can prove itself by closing above the triangle and perhaps even above its recent swing high around 1050, traders will be forced to approach their thinking with a bullish bias for a few months.

Oil popped a healthy $3.50 today and dragged oil stocks higher in its wake. BP, whose shares I was touting a week ago before I panic-dumped all my stocks, soared 15%. I have certainly not played my cards well from the individual equity standpoint. I rarely do, which is one of the reasons I tend to leave them alone and stick with futures. Of the five equity positions I dumped last week... let's see... one, two, three, four... all five are higher than where I sold them! As a group, they have rallied 25%. Sigh. Well, at least I can hang my hat on a lower peg. I flipped them for a 10% gain in three days.

Tomorrow should prove to be a bit more intriguing. Until then...


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