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Stock Market Showing Great Resilience But Has it True Bull Legs?

Stock-Markets / Stock Markets 2011 Mar 25, 2011 - 12:24 PM GMT

By: Seven_Days_Ahead


Best Financial Markets Analysis ArticleThe recent sell-off in the S&P and other leading equity markets in reaction to the earthquake/natural disaster in Japan and fighting in Libya, appears to have run its course, since the S&P has rejected the recent lows.

The Technical Trader’s view:


The big picture is interesting: the impetus from the Head and Shoulders Reversal has been exhausted.

Though the market has pulled back from the Fib resistance  at 1347, it has yet been (so far) lacking in bear energy to retrace as far as the Prior High at 1216.70.

(NB the coincident cluster of Fibonacci supports at that level)..

Look closer

The market’s resilience has been impressive given the background of events.
The rally from the middle of last week has overcome the first test of the resistance a the Prior Low resistance at 1290.

The next test (a lesser one) is the falling bear trendline resistance above the market (1304 today).

Cautious bulls will note the steeply falling volumes on the rally, and want to wait for a move back the 1337.50 Prior High before becoming convinced.

The Macro Trader’s view:

The recent sell-off in the S&P and other leading equity markets in reaction to the earthquake/natural disaster in Japan and fighting in Libya, appears to have run its course, since the S&P has rejected the recent lows.

The feared nuclear catastrophe in Japan hasn’t yet materialised. That is despite

  • the struggle to bring the badly damaged nuclear generating plant at Fukushima under control.
  • drinking water in Tokyo being declared unsafe for infants to drink due to radiation contamination
  • the logistical nightmare of keeping a city the size of Tokyo supplied with bottled drinking water
  • and the continuing disruption to Japan’s economy.

Equity traders are, it seems, relieved a much worse event hasn’t occurred such as the core of one or more of the 6 reactors at the Fukushima plant melting down.

In Libya, traders seem relieved the UN authorised no fly zone has stopped Gaddhafi from attacking his own people, but it has done nothing to restore Libya’s oil exports.

So what has changed sentiment in the S&P over the last few days? Traders have refocused back onto US fundamentals. The US economy continues to improve as the Fed itself noted as much in last week’s FOMC policy statement.

But they also said policy needs to remain loose until the recovery becomes self-sustaining. Additionally, fiscal policy in the US remains expansionary. So while bond and currency traders fret that the US public finances are on an unsustainable path, leading to a massive build-up of the National debt, equity traders take the view, the slack fiscal policy will fuel the economic recovery.

What is clear is that the world economy has experienced a recession different to other post WW11 recessions, and the policy responses needed to turn activity around and restore growth, has also needed to be different.

At the same time the world has changed, and indeed is still changing. The US is no longer the unrivalled global economic power house; others are competing for that title. The main contender is China, but India and Brazil aren’t far behind.

This impacts the world economy in two main ways:

  • The opportunities for trade are greatly expanded meaning greater opportunity for prosperity for more of the world’s people, but
  • There is greater competition for natural resources, especially energy, namely oil and this threatens to cause inflationary problems as global activity increases.

The other area where the world is changing is in the Arab world. Here a people, for so long dominated by powerful rulers, are seeking democracy and a greater say in how their affairs are managed. While this is great news from a humanist standpoint, there is also a worry that significant amounts of the world’s oil exports could be interrupted if the protests develop along the lines of events in Libya.

So while the S&P is supported by domestic US policy, there remains a real threat of volatility from important external influences. This market looks bullish, but it is likely to suffer from repeated episodes of risk aversion. 

Mark Sturdy
John Lewis

Seven Days Ahead
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Mark Sturdy, John Lewis & Philip Allwright, write exclusively for Seven Days Ahead a regulated financial advisor selling professional-level techni44cal and macro analysis and high-performing trade recommendations with detailed risk control for banks, hedge funds, and expert private investors around the world. Check out our subscriptions.

© 2011 Copyright Seven Days Ahead - All Rights Reserved
Disclaimer: The above is a matter of opinion provided for general information purposes only and is not intended as investment advice. Information and analysis above are derived from sources and utilising methods believed to be reliable, but we cannot accept responsibility for any losses you may incur as a result of this analysis. Individuals should consult with their personal financial advisors.

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