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Stocks at Risk on 5th Anniversary of Highs

NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- In this week five years ago, the Dow Industrial Average and S&P 500 set their all time highs at 14,198.10 Dow Industrials and 1576.06 S&P. Many on Wall Street and in the investment community view this anniversary as a non-event as the Nasdaq powered well above its November 2007 high at 2861.51 to a higher high this year at 3196.93 on Sept. 21.

I believe there is enough evidence among the performance of the major averages to heed the warning I present today: It is time to book profits and raise cash to at least 50%.

The Dow Transportation Average set an all-time high in July 2007 at 5487.05, then a higher high at 5536.57 in May 2008, and then its latest all-time high at 5627.85 on July 7, 2011. Transports are thus showing a five-year ceiling between 5487 and 5627. Transports have been trading back and forth around 5000 in 2012. This economically sensitive sector is providing an economic warning that the economy will continue to see slow to no growth despite the Federal Reserve's quantitative easing programs.

The Russell 2000 also has a ceiling that began with an all-time high at 856.48 in July 2007, and its latest all-time high is 868.57 set on May 2, 2011. An attempted breakout above this level occurred with the QE3 reaction high at 868.50 on Sept. 14, 2012. The inability for small stocks to lead is another warning in my judgment.

The PHLX Semiconductor Sector Index represents an important economically sensitive industry and its performance provides another economic warning as demand for chips has been sliding. The SOX set a high at 549.39 in July 2007, then a lower high at 474.33 on Feb. 18, 2011 and another lower high at 444.96 on March 27, 2012.

This series of lower highs since 2007 is another warning for the global economy. The SOX has a negative monthly chart profile and is below its 120-month simple moving average at 397.81.

Stocks are not cheap fundamentally as shows that 53.3% of all stocks are undervalued with 46.7% overvalued. Thirteen of 16 sectors are overvalued; medical by 15.9%, retail-wholesale by 13.4%, construction by 12.9%, utilities by 12.5%, finance by 12.4% and consumer staples by 12.4%.
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