Friday, July 13, 2012

SPX, INDU, BKX: Sifting Through the Minutiae

Bears have a real shot at claiming complete control over this market.  Since March, I've stated that I believe bears control the intermediate term, but lately the short term has remained a bit cloudy.  I've sifted through a lot of one minute and five minute charts recently, and I've come to the conclusion that one more swing low will probably put the bears completely in control.  Nowhere is this more evident than in the Dow (INDU).

While SPX is a bit ambiguous, and can be counted as a correction or an ugly impulse, the Dow is almost certainly only a 3-wave decline thus far (a correction).  One more new swing low should do it for the bear case, though, and give the bears the "all-clear" signal that no new highs are coming.  Ideally for the bear case, a new low would be made beneath 12450.

If they can't make a new swing low, it would appear the bulls are still in control.

The Philadelphia Bank Index (BKX) also shows a pattern that's of some interest.  It's interesting because there are two short-term outcomes that are diametrically opposed to each other: the pattern is either basing, or about to drop rapidly (I used the term "crash" on the chart -- I mean that a bit loosely).  But there's not much in the way of an "in-between" here. 

The chart also shows why it's difficult to completely rule out the potential of a new swing high.  If the second ABC is complete, it is entirely out of balance with the first portion of the pattern.

The short-term SPX chart leaves a lot to be desired.  I'm not happy with the labeling on this chart, and I feel like -- if this is an impulse decline -- then something is off on the labeling here.  It works fine for the (a) (b) (c), but it doesn't feel right for the attempted impulse labeling (the 1-2-3-4-5 part).  Maybe that's because it's not impulsive (?).  In any case, I need to see the market's next move to figure out what needs to be tweaked (if anything).

Note that the market is close to reclaiming the blue channel.

I also took a crack at the very short-term SPX chart, and again, I'm not completely thrilled with the labeling.  My best guess is that an expanded flat is playing out.  If the expanded flat is in play, I'd expect a small bounce at the open, then a trip down to 1331-32.  However, the expanded flat isn't confirmed unless the a-wave low is broken -- barring that, it could be a standard flat that completed at Thursday's close.  Either version of a flat suggests higher prices to come.  Several targets are listed, contingent on market trigger points.

The intermediate outlook is unchanged.  The primary lingering question is still whether there will be a new swing high or whether the bulls are out of options.

In conclusion, the bulls are skating the razor's edge right now, and new lows from here will almost certainly shift all the odds firmly into the bears' corner.  If this is the B-wave I've been looking for, it pretty much needs to bottom right here.  Trade safe.

Reprinted by permission, copyright 2012 Minyanville Media, Inc.

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