#StockTrading – $NIO and its #DarvasBox

The basis of everything in the stock market is simplicity.

That’s hard to tell when there are thousands of opinions and indicators and time frames and derivatives flying around all the time. There must be a thousand videos on YouTube giving lessons in stock and option trading and now there’s also cryptocurrency too. There are brokerage programs and financial advisors and television commentators and TV guests galore. The mind boggles with all the information available, with all the noise, with all the complications.

But it all comes down to one simple fact – whatever it is, it either goes up or it goes down.

Even then, the question arises when is going to do one or the other?

So let me reminisce moment. I had a Twitter exchange recently with the excellent market-timing advisor, Brian Shannon, in which I had the opportunity to recall a conversation I had years and years ago in the parking lot of Cal. State University Northridge with the great market wizard, Willian O’Neil. He was just getting Investors Business Daily off the ground (that’ll tell you how many years ago it was) and was promoting it everywhere. That day at the university as he was leaving his presentation it turned out his car was parked next to mine. We had a nice chat about how useful his paper was, about his CANSLIM method of stock picking, his approach to timing the market particularly, and, as Hemingway used to say, how the weather was.

I asked him as he was trying to slip into his car to leave, what books and people influenced him when he started out. He paused, then with a sly smile and a twinkle in his eye, said “the Darvas book is awfully good.” The Nicolas Darvas book is “How I Made $2,000,000 In The Stock Market.” He made the money in the 1950s and published the book in 1960.

The book is a classic.

Darvas was one half of a renowned dance act that toured constantly and often gave ballroom-dancing demonstrations on cruise ships. The market was a sideline and since he couldn’t pay all that much attention to it while he was away, he would study the stock tables in Barrons and the Wall Street Journal to find stocks in sideways consolidations. He would then draw a box around the consolidation and He would give his broker instructions to buy the stock if the price came out of the top of the box and use the bottom of the box as a stop-loss level.

His stock investing system is simplicity itself. So simple, I’m sure there are those who go “What? It can’t be that easy.” Yes, it can.

Darvas turned his $10,000 savings into $2,000,000 in an 18-month period. As Bill O’Neil said “the Davas book is awfully good.” After I first read it, I realized that the sly smile and twinkle O’Neil gave me that day was him giving away his own stock-market secret – his CANSLIM methodology has Darvas written all over it.

Enough with the reminiscence, enough with the history. Dravas wrote that book 60 years ago.

What about now?

Nothing, absolutely nothing, has changed.

Let’s take NIO, the Chinese electric-vehicle TSLA wanna-be. See the chart below with the Dravas Boxes on each price consolidation since this year’s March low. NIO first came out of a Darvas Box at $3.20, then another at 4.17, then another at 7,91, and finally today again, on high volume, at 17.84 with no Darvas stops hit during its entire climb. Simplicity itself.

Of course, all of these boxes in NIO’s uptrend are in retrospect unless one happened to be focused on the stock and were watching for it to make its moves. That’s the past but notice is hereby given – NIO popped out of its box again today to 17.87 on a significant rise in volume. That makes it a buy on the open tomorrow. A tight stop would be the top line it just crossed at 16.44, and the stop Darvas would use would be the bottom of the box at around 10.5.

Stops are always determined by each individual’s risk tolerance but if the stops don’t get hit, NIO is an investment for the long term from this moment on.

(Click on the chart for a larger view)

Oh, and by the way:

(Click on the chart for a larger view)

#MarketTiming – Adding #Banks to the #ShortList

I have already outlined the obvious stock sectors that are no-brainers for shorting largely because Covid-19 has put them either out of business for the immediate future or has severely hampered profit prospects for this year.

The most obvious are the cruise companies – NCLH, CCL, RCL – since it’s going to be a long time before they can pack a liner with either customers and crews. And now several of the key destinations have so enjoyed being tourist free there is talk they are not even going to allow the ships to dock and disgorge passengers like they were doing before the pandemic.

Next on the list movie theaters – AMC, CNK – since even if they open with social distancing they will at reduced audience capacity. Can they make profits on half a house or less?

It’s the same in the airline sector – AAL, UAL, DAL, LUV – less flights, less passengers, more trouble with the virus every hour of the day. Throw with BA too. No need to buy passenger planes when there are so few passengers and you have a fleet of excess airliners in storage.

I always have coal stocks – BTU, ARCH, SXC, CNX – on the short list because the coal sector always a short. It is not the fuel of the future and is becoming more and more not the fuel of the present.

Now I’m going to add banks as short prospects — JPM, GS, BAC, C, WFC – largely because they have lagged the rally from the March low for too long. That spells trouble not only for the sector but for the market as a whole. If the economy is going to tank and take the stock market with it (any day, week, or month now), it’ll probably, seriously, start the drop in the banks.

I’ve included DB on the chart panel below bacause it is a bank but it’s a somewhat separate case. Its price action is news driven since it has been the primary conduit for the money laundering between the Russian Oligarchs and the Trump Organization. Whether it is or is not going to have to pay for those illegal activities bats its stock price around more than banking fundamental alone.

The market sell off may have begun today with the NYMO putting in a high below a high on short-term breadth and the all important NYSI turning down (my key triggers) but with the FED meeting tomorrow, the timing is still a bit of a crap shoot.

(click on the chart panel for a larger view)

$TSLA slams into an “outside day”

And it hit that wall on the day after its earnings report vaulted it into the airy realm of irrational exuberance.

All over stock market social media, Elon Musk fans and TSLA shareholders were ecstatic as the monster stock, in the midst of a world-wide pandemic and facing the prospect of a dire economic downturn, virtually doubled in no time at all. TSLA has boundless prospects long-term – long-long-term – but its recent rocket ride was crazy. Even Musk said so some time ago.

CRAZY!

So no surprise today as one of the oldest of Wall-Street adages strutted on stage yet again – “Buy the rumor, sell the news.”

The stock plummeted 163 point from its open today and 77 points lower than its close yesterday on higher than average volume, in other words the very definition of an outside day.

So what next?

Actually outside days are somewhat up in the air. In an up trend (and TSLA certainly is in one), it can be a mere bump in the road so to speak, but whenever violent action like that a happens, particularly on good earnings news, one has to see if anyone has been killed in the crash.

Today’s low, me thinks, is the line to live by. If TSLA rises above it, tomorrow, it’s a long with the today’s low as the stop loss. If it continues to drop, the low becomes the protective stop for the shorts.

(click on the chart for a larger view)

#MarketTiming three tweets today from a yawn to the scream

THE YAWN TO THE SCREAM

END OF THE DAY

(CLICK ON THE CHARTS FOR A LARGER VIEW)

#MarketTiming – one more hiccUP before the plunge?

The bear market rally isn’t quite over yet…

I’m not one for fundamentals but in the current market environment that doesn’t matter since there are none other than the FED throwing in a couple of trillion dollars to replace a bubble that burst with yet another bubble.

A couple of trillion dollars…and not even going to the small businesses and everyday people who need it most (and can spend it to fuel a recovery) as an incompetent businessman slash so called President goes on babbling about what a good job he’s done killing 70,000 Americans so far and sinking the entire economy while blaming everyone and everything else for his personal incompetence. Up until now Herbert Hoover was the biggest historical disaster of a President in the last 100 years, but Donny Trump who brags about being best at everything may be only best at this.

So if you’re long-term investor and you are not selling into this good-luck rally, all I can say for the longer term is “good luck.”

However, NYSI is still rising and the NYMO, which is so far pulling back, probably needs to hiccup to one more high below a high before this is done.

That hiccup appears to have begun as today’s general market price action climbed out of the today’s opening gap down to finish positive.

The tweet Friday:

#MarketTiming – looking for a swing leg up…

Nearly every night for past two weeks, the overnight index futures have been trying to mount another leg up for the market from the March 23rd bottom, and nearly every day the bears try to knock it back down.

Actually that’s typical – as J.P. is reputed to have said famously: “The market will fluctuate.”

As a day and swing trader I’m just sitting on the edge of my desk chair waiting to see which way to go.

Technically speaking, the SPY chart is showing an island reversal for the recent spectacular bounce off the market low.

That is bearish.

In addition the chart patterns I watch most closely — the NYSI and NYMO — are decidedly bearish. After getting wildly and rapidly overbought on the bounce, they have retreated with both highs below highs on the NYMO and a drop below the zero line on the NYSI. In bullish times it usually take three or four NYMO highs below highs to stop a rally. In bearish times it may take but one and several lows above lows to mount one. So far that has been true again (see the NYMO/NYSI line in the middle of the first chart below).

Long term investors, if they are in this market below current price levels, are losing time (at least a year, maybe as much as Trump’s entire term). If they are in at higher price levels they are truly trapped, losing time and losing money.

Regardless, I keep hearing both groups wishing and hoping — and pleading for — more bounce, either to cut paper losses or to get out.

So what’s next?

Having said all the bearish stuff, let’s take a look at the a couple short-term rally possibilities.

The NYMO, despite the current bearish pattern, just did something that is normal in bullish times and is at least a glimmer for a another leg up. It has dipped to the zero line three weeks (15 trading days) from its low. Three to four weeks into is normal for a twelve to fourteen week McClellan Oscillator cycle; it happens all the time in bull markets. Could this be a hint this is the week to try for more upside? A bit of relief, a surge of hope for the bulls? Maybe.

In addition, every day I tabulate all the stocks on my nifty-fifty stock list as to whether they are on buys, buys-overbought, sells, sells-oversold. Have been doing that for years, and it is a list that talks.

See the histogram on the second chart below for reference.

I’ve said before any time 40 or more of those stocks are on sells that is either the bottom of a swing or the beginning of the bottom of the swing. On the chart below, that tallies as 30 or more (stocks on buys minus stocks on sells). The red box mark each time this has happened.

During bull markets, when the nifty-fifty start up again, they either lead or confirm the next up swing. But since February that has not been case. No need to guess why that is so. Whenever a reliable indicator has a change in behavior, it screams there is SOMETHING BIGGER GOING ON HERE! My stock list is one among several technical indicators that have just announced the bear is out of his cave (and he’s given the world a vicious virus besides).

But…like the glimmer on the NYMO, there is a glimmer here also. The stocks on sells has been under forty for three days (there is no four days on this chart), and for the past two of those days it’s been slowing slogging its way higher.

Monday will be important but I’m going guess… The market is going to pop and take a leg up for at least a couple days this week.

Needless to say, I could be totally wrong about this since I am arguing against the NYMO and NYSI at the moment, the two most important measures of market psychology there is.

If so…well…it will be a short…again.

(CLICK ON THE CHART FOR A LARGER VIEW)

(CLICK ON THE CHART FOR A LARGER VIEW)

Reading history on the #MarginDebt chart

For anyone who pays attention to FINRA margin debt this market crash was no surprise.

If there was anything surprising about what is now 30% plunge in the SPX, it was that it took so long to happen.

I had a clear warning here as far back as six months ago in this post:

Margin Debt – setting up a S&P 50% plunge?

Now all I can say is anyone who was not paying close attention to margin debt or was disregarding its warning was asking to get their stock profits ripped apart.

Once margin debt starts down, it feeds on itself with margin calls leading to stock sales and more margin calls leading to more stocks sales with each jolting decline in the market. And besides the profits lost, there is time lost, sometimes a lot of time lost, before the market can even begin to recover.

If we take a look at the history on the chart below it’s pretty obvious the divergences between margin-debt and price of the SPX foretells the market sell-offs. In 2000 and in 2008 margin debt dropped down (the black boxes on the chart) while each time the market went higher for a few months before plummeting. Again these last six months (another lower black box lower than the previous peak), history repeated.

Granted it’s hard to believe as the market keeps going up and up the bull will ever end — earnings seemed good, the Fed was on board, Trump was bragging on Twitter at each new high — but long-term investors could not ask for a better advance notice it was their time to sell or at least tighten their stop-loss levels to preserve capital. All this market needed was one small trigger for the full unwinding of margin debt to usher in a bear market, instead it got a big one. But if it hadn’t been the Covid-19 pandemic, it would have been something else.

Now that the bear market has begun, margin debt is indicating it is not done yet.

History says, like in 2000 and 2008/2009, the S&P500 is going down around 50% before this bear market is finished. If history repeats again, there is another 20 or so percent more downside to go.

Margin debt during this long bull market went higher than either 2000 and 2007 so there’s no telling how that’s going to play out. From its 2019 peak it has a lot farther to fall – and if the news keeps getting worse — since the US, thanks to a lying President and his incompetent Federal administration is getting a late start on coming to grips with the pandemic it’s possible it could be more than 50%.

If the dire damage being done to the economy is not mitigated sufficiently by a Congress that was supposed to have a stimulus package out last week and hasn’t managed get one done yet or if the stimulus is too small or if it’s aimed at the wrong people, we could be looking beyond a historical 50-percent decline to something more like 1932.

You ask me, we’re at a point when we need a Franklin Roosevelt in the White House and instead we’re still stuck with worse than a Herbert Hoover.

But as history shows on the chart, whatever the final decline is to be, it’s likely it won’t be until after a big bounce any a week, any day, any minute now.

This market is massively oversold and it’s a positive sign that governors and mayors, allied with scientists and health-care providers across the country, have taken over the front-line fight against the pandemic as Washington goes on dithering.

The trouble with the margin-debt numbers is they are reported a month late so one pretty much has to guess, based the price action during the month, where the debt level might be in the current month. While we can see the SPX crash here in March on the chart, the margin debt line is only up to date through February. I would assume from the current price action in March it’s now a lot lower, probably akin to that drop in 2008 marked by the black vertical line.

If so, we may be closer to a bear-market bottom (six months or so) than the pattern in 2000 (which took about three years).

Regardless, the bounce, which could be spectacular, is not going to be a resumption of the bull underwater long-term holders are hoping for. More likely it’s going to be a bull to be slaughtered so severely by the next bear move no one, as despair sets in, will be looking to buy any stocks.

In despair is when a new bull market can be born.

But I could be wrong. It could be different this time. Uh, huh…

(CLICK ON THE CHART FOR A LARGER VIEW)

$SPY – Up, up, up…and KERPLUNK?

Just got back from a week in New Orleans so if my head feels a bit thick, don’t blame me, blame the Nawlins’ food, drink, the music.

W.C. Fields once said: “I spent half my money on gambling, alcohol and wild women. The other half I wasted.” New Orleans is a perfect city to not do the wastin.’

Anyway, the market after a break of its December/January uptrend line, took another shot and manage another high on SPY (among other index ETFs) last week but dropped back down below the January high (332.95) to close at 332.20 Friday.

Not such a big deal except the NYMO after the rally off a double-bottom earlier in the week (see the white line with the red dots on the chart below) fell with the price weakness to turn the all important NYSI (longer-term breadth) negative.

That’s an automate sell on its own but there’s maybe more…

In his book “Methods of a Wall Street Master,” Trader Vic Sperandeo says determining the trend is a simple as 1-2-3. One is the break of the trend line, which happened on the gap down from 1/24 to 1/27 (see the chart); two is the attempt to resume the recent trend that fails, which may have just happened; three is a fall back to through the low after the trend line break.

Since “three” hasn’t happened yet, there’s a chance, and maybe even the likelihood, the pattern here is just a pause before more advance but…

But Trader Vic Sperandeo’s has more. His most classic set up for aggressive traders is right here, right now. He calls it “2B”, as in “2B or Not 2B, that’s where the money is made.” The fade off the old high on Friday is the 2B, as pretty as can be (see the chart).

This a short.

And it is made all the better by the stop being close by at the old high at 334.20.

That simple. And if it follows through, without stopping out, it could be a great big KERPLUNK right at an all time high.

P.S. There’s also a bearish full moon today for those who put some store in such lunar signs.

(click on the chart for a larger view)
and

$TSLA – Update as its stock price launches like a rocket

Elon Musk launched his cherry red roadster into a Mars orbit last year.

TAKE A LOOK:

TSLA Roaster takes a space ride

Today he launched the company’s stock into a Wall Street orbit (see the link and charts below). You’ve heard it here before…

TWO YEARS AGO:

Is TSLA the best long term investment since AAPL?

AND NOW ON ITS LATEST EARNINGS:

(Click on the chart for a larger view)

#STOCKS – on $AAPL gone parabolic

At the risk of a massive understatement, let’s just say AAPL has gone up…a lot.

In fact one look at its chart below reveals is has gone parabolic.

Let’s define a parabolic move first. Basically, according the website, Prometheos Market Insight, when a stock makes a enough of a move to create three distinct supporting trend lines (see the green lines on the chart below), then accelerates, it is in a parabolic move (the red line on the chart).

There is both good news in that, and bad news.

The good news you own it, the bad news its latest rise is unsustainable. Although one can only guess when and at what level it parabola ends (the way it always is with that phenomenon), but when the inevitable end comes it will likely be violent and the stock could eventually go back to where the parabolic began.

At this point, a rough estimate of where it began in AAPL is around $230.

It’s hard to believe it will ever quit going up as it’s wildly (exuberantly) rising, but I would suggest there is no profit here until one sells.

Also, one other thing to keep in mind, AAPL today, according to Yahoo Finance, has a market cap of 1.377 trillion dollars. That in itself is unprecedented in market history, but it is also nearly $100 billion higher than next highest market cap, MSFT (but that as they say is another story).

(click on the chart for a larger view)