Friday, January 28, 2011

The Red Sea

Whew! The 1 PM market heat map here (courtesy of pretty much says it all. Ugly ugly ugly. Today was one of those news-driven days that you couldn't see coming on any charts. I was right about the market closing lower if we fell below the daily pivot, but I certainly did not expect a 166 point cratering in the Dow. And that wasn't the worst of it. The S&P and Nasdaq were both hit even harder.

My only consolation is that I wasn't alone today in this sea of red ink. That and the fact that even though I took a 1.38% pasting today, that still barely beat out the Dow's 1.39% loss, and was better than the Naz and S&P's -2.48% and -1.73% respectively. But it's unfortunate that I was too late to the party this morning to get in on any sort of hedging activity. The best thing that can be said for today is that it mercifully ended at 4 PM. That and the fact that all the unrest in Egypt happened on a Friday. Hopefully, things will have cooled off over there by Monday.

So where does that leave us now? We blew right through the 11,867 support level like it wasn't even there before finally holding the line in the 11,850-11,820 area set in the middle of the month.Here's the weekly chart of the Dow. Although I'm by nature an optimist, I have to say I don't like the looks of this pattern. This week formed a dark cloud cover and today's action took us right out of the ascending RTC channel. Accordingly, I'm taking down the green arrow. Of further concern is that all of the weekly indicators appear to have topped. So despite today's losses, I don't think we're out of these particular woods yet. Monday's action should tell a lot about whether we can rally back or if this is the start of a larger correction.

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