Author Archives: MPTrader

Eye on IWM Versus SPY:  Is Bull Market Losing Steam?

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On November 6, we noted in our Mid-Day Markets update that a comparison of the SPY and IWM showed a deterioration in the Russell 2000 small-cap ETF relative to the big-cap SPY. We said that as long as IWM was trading below its 20 DMA at 149.11, we would view it as vulnerable to downside continuation off of its Oct 9 all-time high at 150.58.

We were watching and continue to watch this SPY-IWM relationship closely, as, historically, in the later stages of a bull market, a divergence is very likely.  In other words, as a bull market loses steam, small companies lose upside momentum relative to the “go to” mega-capitalized companies. (more…)

XME Miners/Metals ETF Pushing Towards Significant Breakout

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The SPDR S&P Metals and Mining ETF (XME) could be on the verge of a surprising, very powerful upside breakout after completing a 6-month corrective accumulation period.

After Trump was elected last November, the XME climbed from just under 25 to a February 2017 high at 35.21, or a whopping 41%, in anticipation of the enactment of the Trump agenda, concurrent with lower taxes, stronger economic growth, and upward pressure on inflation.

Thereafter, however, in reaction to the Administration’s failure to pass health care legislation, coupled with a myriad of disappointments and political fumbles, prospects for “The Trump Trade” faded miserably.

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Braving the Wild Nat Gas Ride

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To anyone friendly to natural gas for the past five months, holding a long position certainly has been a challenge, and has been more akin to riding a bull on the PBR circuit.

Just to illustrate the bumpy ride, take a look at the 4-hour chart of the nat gas futures (NG) showing the price swings across a multi-month range carved out between 2.90 and 2.82 on the low side of the range, juxtaposed against resistance atop the range at 3.15 to 3.23. Within that range, over several months, there has been no significant change in the perceived  fundamentals that indicate there is just too much natural gas around to lift prices consistently above 3.15 for any length of time, yet there is also an apparent perception that under 2.90, nat gas prices are relatively cheap.

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TBT Advance Gains Momentum

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As we noted in our article last week, we have had strong reasons technically as well as from a macro perspective to be bullish on the ProShares UltraShort 20+ Year Treasury (TBT) since its low just under 33 on September 7.

And the TBT has continued to rise since then.  It gapped up Wednesday to $35.50 from Tuesday evening’s close at $34.46.

The upward thrust occurred just in advance of the unveiling of the President’s Tax Reform Plan (Wednesday at 3 PM ET), so we have to couch its bullish action under that umbrella.  But with lower taxes for most individuals and businesses and a one-time business foreign repatriation tax-break being reasons to anticipate an increase in spending, infrastructure, and investment, higher interest rates likely will be a bi-product of such a policy mix — if tax reform becomes law. (more…)

Calling the TBT Low … Where Is Yield Heading Next?

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On September 6, with the ProShares UltraShort 20+ Year Treasury (TBT) reaching a new low (33.32) in its 7-month corrective process, we noted that “Dec-Sep correction could be at or nearing a downside exhaustion.”

Our RSI and MACD indicators showed a glaring non-confirmation of the low — and sure enough after the TBT dipped to a new low of 32.99 the next day, it went on to rally over the next four sessions, and reached a high of 35.25 this past Wednesday.

On that same day, Wed Sep 20, the Federal Open Market Committee said it will keep the federal funds rate in a range of 1-1.25%, but Fed officials intimated that they may raise rates one more time by year-end, and three times during 2018, in addition to starting Quantitative Tightening in October– the slow, steady reduction of its bloated $4.5 trillion balance sheet. (more…)

Dueling Technicals on Amazon (AMZN)

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An analysis of Amazon (AMZN)’s charts on Monday identified a near-term potentially bullish formation juxtaposed against a tricky, potentially dangerous intermediate-term set up.

From a near-term perspective, AMZN on its hourly chart appeared to be putting in a “falling wedge”-type pattern (the opposite of a rising wedge), which usually represents a trend-ending formation. In this case, it would be the conclusion of the correction off of the July 27 high at 1083.20 to Monday’s low at 942.25.

Often times, the end of the falling wedge will come in the form of one final down-spike beneath the lower wedge boundary line, into marginal new reaction low territory, say beneath 940, into the 936 area, followed by a vicious upside reversal spike and the initiation of a powerful rally that will propel AMZN above 953-960 resistance to confirm the turn.  From a near-term perspective then, AMZN should be getting ready for a tradable upmove. (more…)