By Scott Martindale
President, Sabrient Systems LLC

Stocks continue to hold up well, encouraged by improving global fundamentals and a solid Q1 corporate earnings season. However, at the moment most of the major US market indices are struggling at key psychological levels of technical resistance that have held before, including Dow at 21,000, S&P 500 at 2,400, and Russell 2000 at 1,400. Only the Tech-heavy NASDAQ seems utterly undeterred by the 6,100 level, after having no problem blasting through the 6,000 level with ease last month and setting record highs almost daily. Perhaps the supreme strength in Tech will be able to lead the broader market through this tough resistance level. Every time it appears stocks are on the verge of a major correction, they catch a bid at an important technical support level. In other words, cautious optimism remains the MO of investors – despite weighty geopolitical risks and, here at home, furious political fighting at a level of viciousness I didn’t think possible in the U.S.

There is simply no denying the building momentum in broad global economic expansion, and any success in implementing domestic fiscal stimulus will just add even more fuel to this burgeoning fire. That’s not to say that we won’t see a nasty selloff at some point this year, but I think such an occurrence would have a news-driven (or Black Swan) trigger, and likely would ultimately serve as a broad-based buying opportunity.

In this periodic update, I give my view of the current market environment, offer a technical analysis of the S&P 500 chart, review Sabrient’s weekly fundamentals-based SectorCast rankings of the ten U.S. business sectors, and then offer up some actionable ETF trading ideas. Overall, our sector rankings still look bullish, while the sector rotation model has returned to a bullish bias even though stocks now struggle at strong psychological resistance levels.  Read more.... Read more about Sector Detector: Bulls gather conviction, led by Tech, as uncertainties are lifted

Volatility reigned in January on elevated volume as stock investors shifted their focus from global events to U.S. earnings reports, which have ranged from amazing (e.g., Apple) to crushing (e.g., Microsoft). Although the earnings reports have brought plenty of surprises, the volatility is no surprise, as I and many other market commentators predicted for the New Year. Read more about Sector Detector: Volatility continues as earnings reports create excitement and despair

Investors in U.S. equities seem to have embraced a new market paradigm in which upside spikes come more swiftly than the downside selloffs. Remember when it used to be the other way around? When fear was stronger than greed? The market is consolidating its gains off the early-October V-bottom reversal, and no one seems to be in any hurry to unload shares this time around, with the holidays rapidly approaching and all. Read more about Sector Detector: Investors make up new rules for their new market paradigm

Today’s market opened up a tad on positive action from Asian and European markets; however, the pangs of last week’s painful performance took hold and the S&P 500 fell as much as 0.7%.  Earnings and revenues for Caterpillar (CAT) were below estimates causing investors to recall flat to poor results from General Electric (GE), International Business Machines (IBM) and McDonalds (MCD) on Friday.  Then, shortly into today’s session, Existing Home Sales o Read more about What the Market Wants: Half-full or Half-empty?

david / Tag: ABBV, SIG, HCI, MSFT / 0 Comments

“Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.” -- Winston Churchill

For the moment, investors continue to see any signs of a sharp market drop as a clear buying opportunity, rather than as a time to panic and exit the market.

In other words, greed currently trumps fear on Wall Street.

Is this a perfect time for a contrarian play or what? Read more about ETF Periscope: Gold Gets Smacked Down as Wall Street Continues to Soar

That’s been hard to figure lately.  Uncertainty has not eased.  Not in Europe.  Not in the Middle East. Not in China or Japan. Not in the U.S., with a dead-heat election battle and unknown future Congressional dynamics.  Companies overall continue to beat earnings, mostly, and miss on revenues.  Now there is a certainty: earnings cannot keep going up if revenues keep going down. Read more about What the Market Wants: Looking for Certainty Amidst Uncertainty

david / Tag: AFL, LCC, PG, DANA, YHOO, AAPL, GOOG, WDC, STX, CAT, MSFT, INTC, IBM / 0 Comments

By: Meena Krishnamsetty, Insider Monkey

Apple Inc (NASDAQ:AAPL) is the most popular stock among hedge funds and billionaires, and it is performing spectacularly. Despite Apple Inc (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s successful performance hedge funds are underperforming the market third year in a row. The reason is simple. Equity hedge funds usually hedge around 50% of their long exposure. It just doesn’t make sense to compare them to the S&P 500 index which is 100% long. So we came up with a better way of illustrating hedge funds’ true stock picking ability and constructed an index that is 100% long. Read more about 5 Stocks Billionaires Are Crazy About

walter / Tag: AAPL, GOOG, MSFT, MWSA, QCOM / 0 Comments

By Meena Krishnamsetty (Insider Monkey Editor)

Hedge funds will disclose their end of first quarter holdings next week. However, we can still track hedge funds’ transactions through Form 4, 13D, and 13G filings. We don’t get to see their entire portfolio in these filings but we get to see their recent transactions in their large positions. Here are the stocks hedge funds bought recently: Read more about Hedge Funds Bought These Stocks Recently

walter / Tag: AAPL, BKS, Hedge Fund, insider-buying, IR, MSFT, OAK, URS, Z YELP / 0 Comments

david trainerFor U.S. equities, ETFs offer a higher percentage (10%) of attractive investment options than mutual funds (1%) at a lower cost. The radically higher number of US equity mutual funds (4,700+) versus ETFs (380+) is not indicative of better stock selection from active management. On the contrary, the vast majority of actively-managed funds do not justify the higher fees they charge. Read more about ETF vs Mutual Funds: The Winner Is…

dtrainer / Tag: AIG, ALV, AVB, BAC, C, CME, COF, COP, CPB, CVX, DELL, DISH, Do, DVN, EP, EQR, FCX, FRX, GE, GILD, GIS, GPS, INTC, JPM, LLY, LRCX, MSFT, NEM, NLY, PXD, T, TXN, UNH, VNO, WFC, WMT, XOM / 0 Comments

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