Slope of Hope Blog Posts

Slope initially began as a blog, so this is where most of the website’s content resides. Here we have tens of thousands of posts dating back over a decade. These are listed in reverse chronological order. Click on any category icon below to see posts tagged with that particular subject, or click on a word in the category cloud on the right side of the screen for more specific choices.

Chart Analysis on GLD (by Mike Paulenoff)

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Earlier today gold and the SPDR Gold Shares (NYSE: GLD) hit a bit of an air pocket which I suspect should be attributed to the comments by hedge fund legend George Soros about gold being the "ultimate bubble." That aside, let's notice that the "Soros Swoon" managed to find support at an important near-term point-and-figure breakout plateau at 123.40 in the GLD.

As long as the 123.40/20 area contains any forthcoming weakness, the very near-term upmove off of 121.00 will be intact and will point higher towards a hurdle of 124.40 en route to 126.00 immediately thereafter.

Originally published on

The Technical Indicators I’ve Chosen

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At the beginning of this (thus far) horrible month for me, I felt the need to reach out and get some help. I wanted to get recommendations and insights on technical indicators, which for most of my many years as a technician and trader I eschewed as too "lagging" to be helpful. Given the kind of market we've been in for over a year now (spasmodic ups and downs), I felt it was time to get some better cycle management into the mix.

I received a ton of emails. Some of the snarkier parts of the web described me as "lost", since I was casting about for new ideas. Apparently "willing to learn new techniques" is synonymous with "lost", so there you have it.

In the meantime, I've carefully read the emails and looked at literally hundreds of indicators and thousands of pages of books. I'm trying to keep things simple, and I've landed on a handful of indicators I think will be helpful in finding out when it's time to "Bail Out And Wait". I'd be interested in whatever comments you have (on the blog please; I don't want to deal with another email avalanche, unless you have something you absolutely don't want to share with anyone else).

You will be shocked to see TOS Charts being used here instead of my own ProphetCharts, but there are one or two things I can do in TOS Charts that I cannot yet do in ProphetCharts, and I have no problem using this platform for my cycle analysis.

The first one, offered to me from our beloved Fujisan, is Persons Pivots using the rather novel OPEX as the time basis. This did as astonishingly good job calling the last two major turning points (although I notice it would have been not very helpful prior to this, so I am not going to fall madly in love with this, or any other, indicator).


Next up is a pair of indicators – the McClellan Oscillator and the Fisher Transform – which appear beneath the Persons Pivots chart on my screen. This trio seems like a good way to get a sense of major turning points (the price chart being used in all these examples, by the way, is the /ES)


Finally, there is the Acceleration Bands study:


As you can see by the circles above, this also did a fine job spotting major turning points.

Now obviously, I'd love to turn back the clock and have caught these turning points (that's the understatement of the century), but the point is that, as traders, it's important to keep an open mind to learning new techniques. 99% of the stuff out there is just "noise", but if you're willing to do the work, you can find a few gems. I think I've honed in on some genuinely helpful studies above, and I'd love to hear your thoughts.

That's it for me today. Trading isn't that fun lately, so I'm not feeling particularly chatty. I'll see you in the morning.

Opex Chop (by Springheel Jack)

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It was a very strange day yesterday with big moves on rumors that the Fed is likely to start large scale quantitative easing again. The effect was a big fall on USD and a rise on equities that hasn't been sustained so far. We did get the exact hit on the neckline of the big SPX IHS that I've been waiting for:

100915 SPX Daily IHS

I was expecting a bit of a retracement yesterday and it looks as though we may well get it today instead. Dow and SPX have now broken their support trendlines and we appear to be in a topping phase that will probably last until opex. I'm expecting us to chop around in the 1100 – 1130 SPX area until the end of the week at least.

There were a number of bullish developments yesterday on a number of markets. One that caught my eye was emerging markets, where the April high was exceeded slightly. I've posted the EEM chart before to show how it tends to bottom before SPX as a lead indicator. Here's the daily futures chart to show where we are now, with a rising wedge top trendline hit as well as April resistance, and a retracement towards the lower trendline that has already started:


That illustrates one of the numerous reasons why yesterday's high is such a strong resistance area for equities. We are likely to see a significant retracement from this area regardless of what happens afterwards and my view is that we most likely chop around in a topping area for the rest of opex week and then retrace next week. What happens after that is harder to say but I'm leaning more bullish after yesterday.

On EURUSD the IHS neckline was convincingly broken yesterday and EURUSD made it all the way up to the next major resistance level at 1.303. It is retracing now and I'm watching carefully to see whether the 1.292 neckline is tested or rebroken. If it is rebroken then the IHS is less likely to play out to the 1.325 target. If the next major break is up through 1.303 though, then that target will most likely be made. The EURUSD IHS isn't as high quality as the SPX IHS as one shoulder is very much smaller than the other, and that does tend to affect reliability:


I had a query yesterday after I posted the 74% probability of meeting target for the SPX IHS if the neckline is broken. That stat is from Bulkowski based on many past patterns on many stocks and indices, but I had a look at the three year SPX chart to see how these patterns have performed on SPX over recent years.

The two previous large IHS patterns that have formed were from the March 2009 and Feb 2010 lows and both played out to target. The only two large bearish patterns I found were the one from last July that failed, and this year's pattern that has failed so far and looks unlikely to play out to target now. That is encouraging for bulls at least if the current IHS neckline is broken:

100915 SPX Daily 3Yr HS Patterns

30 year treasuries hit my support level earlier in the week, and have since bounced strongly back to the top trendline of the short term declining channel, which was good resistance yesterday. I was reading some speculation yesterday that large scale Fed purchases of treasuries would support the bond market and drive down yields but I have to say that there's little evidence to suggest that is true. Bonds are negatively correlated with equities and the large scale Fed purchases of bonds last year had a very positive effect on equities, but bonds were flat at best. Bonds only really took off when large scale Fed purchases of treasuries ended in March this year.

I've illustrated this with the chart showing 30yr treasury yields with SPX as the background. Yields move up when bond prices move down of course, so the correlation with equities becomes a positive one:

100915 TYX Daily vs SPX

If equities do break up on Feb purchases on bonds therefore, then the strong rally in treasuries that we've seen in recent months is most likely over, and bonds should trend flat to down while USD gets trashed again. That is also common sense as equities rising strongly is in anticipation of a stronger economy, and a stronger economy would strongly imply higher interest rates.

Gold and Silver had massive days yesterday as the rumor that the Fed was going to resume large scale efforts to debase USD once again underlined the value of a store of value that can't be printed. The two year rising channel on gold that I posted last month at 1170 has the next upside target at over 1400, though I'm expecting some retracement when silver hits the February 2008 high at 21.33. Here's the channel on gold:

100915 Gold Weekly Rising Channel