One More Cry of ‘Wolf’

  • SumoMe

If I were the type to make bold proclamations I would probably consider “taking my shot” right here and shout “This is the Top” and/or “The Market May Crash.”  Unfortunately, on those occasions (well) in the past when I would make bold public predictions of what was about to happen in the financial markets I would almost invariably end up looking pretty stupid. So even if I did make a “bold proclamation” it wouldn’t necessarily mean that anyone should pay any attention.

Besides all that the last thing I want is for “the party to end”.  Even if you do think the market is about to tank it’s a pretty crummy thing to have to root for.  Even if you did manage to “call the top”, the ripple effect of the ramifications associated with a serious stock market decline can have pretty negative effect on just about everyone’s life.

So let’s put it this way: I am concerned – and prepared to act defensively if necessary – but still have money in the market and am still hoping for the best.

Reasons for Caution (Indexes)

Figure 1 displays four major indexes. The Dow keeps hitting new highs day after day while the others – at the moment – are failing to confirm.  That doesn’t mean that they won’t in the days ahead.  But the longer this trend persists the more negative the potential implications.1Figure 1 – Dow at new highs, small-caps, Nasdaq and S&P 500 not quite (Courtesy AIQ TradingExpert)

Reasons for Caution (Bellwethers)

Figure 2 displays 4 “bellwethers” that I follow which may give some early warning signs.2Figure 2 – Market Bellwethers possibly flashing some warning signs (Courtesy AIQ TradingExpert)

*SMH soared to a high in early June and has been floundering a bit since.

*Dow Transports tried to break out to the upside in July but failed miserably.

*XIV is comfortably in new high territory.

*BID tried to break out in July and then collapsed.  It is presently about 12% off of its high.

In a nutshell – 3 of the 4 are presently flashing warning signs.

Reasons for Caution (Market Churn)

In this article I wrote about an indicator that I follow that can be useful in identify market “churn” – which can often be a precursor to market declines.  Spikes above 100 by the blue line often signify impending market trouble

It should be noted that the indicators signals are often early and occasionally flat out wrong.  Still, a churning market with the Dow making new highs has often served as a “classic” warning sign.

3Figure 3 – JK HiLo Index (blue) versus Nasdaq Compsite / 20 (red); 12/31/2006-present

Summary

Again, and for the record, I do not possess the ability to “predict” the markets.  But I have seen a few “warning signs” flash bright red at times in the past.  As a general rule, it is best to at least pay attention – and maybe make a few “contingency plans” – you know,  just in case.

For more variations on the theme be sure to review:

Respect the Trend, But Beware

On Picking a Bottom in VXX

Here’s hoping my gut is wrong – again.

Jay Kaeppel

Disclaimer:  The data presented herein were obtained from various third-party sources.  While I believe the data to be reliable, no representation is made as to, and no responsibility, warranty or liability is accepted for the accuracy or completeness of such information.  The information, opinions and ideas expressed herein are for informational and educational purposes only and do not constitute and should not be construed as investment advice, an advertisement or offering of investment advisory services, or an offer to sell or a solicitation to buy any security.

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