The bullish news is that $SPX has made a new all-time intraday high for the last three days in a row. The not-so-bullish news is that $SPX has failed to close at a new all-time on any of those days. This is the action of a tired market.
The $SPX chart (Figure 1) remains bullish unless $SPX closes below 1985 -- the upper horizontal line.
Equity-only put-call ratios remain on buy signals, however, despite the recent action.
$SPX broke out to new all-time intraday and closing highs this week. New all-time closing highs were made on 4 of 5 consecutive days, which confirmed the move, so the $SPX chart is bullish once again.
Equity-only put-call ratios have finally rolled over to buy signals. To the naked eye, they rolled over more than a week ago, but to the computer, the confirmed buy signals only arrived a couple of days ago.
The rally that began on August 8th has extended quickly and strongly to take $SPX to new intraday and closing all-time highs. When it crossed over resistance at 1960, the $SPX chart improved from "bearish" to "neutral." If another all-time closing high is registered today, that will officially make the $SPX chart "bullish."
Once again, a $VIX “spike peak” buy signal is working out very well. This powerful indicator generated a buy signal as of the close of trading on Monday, August 11th. $SPX has been up six of seven days since then, gaining over 50 points.
After an ugly day on Thursday, August 7th, followed by a further decline of 13 $SPX points during the overnight session, stocks have rallied steadily. Most observers are saying that the correction is over and that the bulls are back in charge. That may be true, but the evidence is not completely in favor of the bulls, yet.
Our publication schedule is altered for August, since our office is going to be closed at the end of August for three days. We are going to publish this newsletter on the first and third Thursdays in August. Regular publication dates will resume in September. The weekly Hotline updates will continue to be issued as usual.
A twitter follower recently inquired about extremely heavy option volume in a particular stock. I explained that it was due to dividend arbitrage. For those wondering, the following Q&A from a 2004 issue of The Option Strategist explains the intricacies of this professional-favored strategy.
We have often used the phrase, “oversold does not mean buy.” It is probably one of the most useful phrases a trader can employ. Many a would-be bear missed almost the entire bear market of 2008 because it got immediately oversold in September 2008 and stayed that way all through one of the worst bear markets ever, that unfolded over the next couple of months.
The $SPX chart remains bearish after having broken down through 1950. $SPX sliced right through the next support level at 1925, and after temporarily holding at 1915, appears ready to test the major support level at 1900.
Equity-only put-call ratios remain on sell signals (see Figures 2 & 3). They are both rising steadily, and as long as they are trending higher, that is negative for stocks.
One of our customers recently asked a good option-related question regarding the purchasing of worthless options at expiration. This is a very common occurance so I figured my response is worth sharing with everyone. See the question and answer below.
Dear Mr. McMillan,