Nothing much has changed in the market. The Nasdaq Composite first started to show signs of distribution, or institutional selling, in late September. The tech index remains under distribution, and the market's technical picture continues to worsen. Oversold? Perhaps, but people were saying Apple was oversold at $650 and look where it is now.
A weak market eventually takes everything down with hit. Michael Kors (KORS) had been showing relative price strength but shares cratered 7.2% Thursday in big volume, giving up its 50-day simple moving average. Women's retailer Chico's FAS (CHS) had also been holding well, but it did the same thing, dropping 3.9% in fast trade. They may go on to form proper bases from here and eventually stage technical breakouts. What I know right now is that they are risky buys in the current unsettled market.
I am currently long Proshares Short QQQ (PSQ) with my Ultimate Growth Stocks model portfolio. I plan on staying in the position until the market gives me a signal that its trend might be ready to turn upward. Keep in mind, though, that significant technical damage has been done to the market. It will take time for new setups take shape.
At this point, I'm simply looking for the first day of a new rally attempt for the major averages. The percentage gain doesn't matter nor does the volume -- just an up day for the market. I won't pay much attention to what happens on the second or third day of the rally attempt, but on the fourth day and beyond, I'll look for a significant percentage gain (at least 1.5%) in the indices in higher volume. This would be a signal to start wading back into the market.
I learned to recognize a follow-through day during my years at Investor's Business Daily. They don't work all the time, but they have a pretty good success rate. At the very least, it's important to know when one occurs, because it's around the time when new leadership starts to make its presence felt.
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[Editor's note: Shreve provides live market analysis every day on the TFNN radio network, hosting a daily call-in talk show -- Breakout Investing -- from 3-4 ET. You can listen live.]