This column originally appeared on Real Money Pro at 9:24 a.m. EDT on Oct. 19.NEW YORK ( Real Money) -- One of the most significant market headwinds that I (and other market bears) have cited is the challenge to second-half corporate profits. Surprisingly, many commentators have recently waxed enthusiastically about the prospects for earnings, even though the sampling of reported companies has been small. Also, as the week progressed, several key technology companies such as IBM (IBM - Get Report), Google (GOOG - Get Report) and Microsoft (MSFT - Get Report) have had high-profile misses, and iconic Apple's (AAPL - Get Report) shares have slid noticeably in the face of profit reductions by several leading analysts. Several non-tech bellwether companies, including Caterpillar (CAT) -- the monthly data -- Ingersoll-Rand (IR) and McDonald's (MCD) this morning, have begun to chime in with warnings as well. My investment methodology in selecting individual securities is a fundamental one. My use of technicals and sentiment remains a part, though not a meaningful part, of my investment mosaic. Nonetheless, especially at important junctures, I find technicals (e.g., chart breakdowns, resistance and support lines) and sentiment (at extremes of optimism and pessimism) to be useful tools. For technology, the bearish stars now might be aligned as both important technical and fundamental change might now be occurring. As "Fast Money's" Steve Cortes pointed out late yesterday, technology shares have comfortably outperformed the S&P 500 over the last six years, even throughout the 2008-2009 credit and economic crisis. But the relationship between PowerShares QQQ ( QQQ) and SPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust ( SPY) has now broken down, as evidenced by the double-top and relative performance line in Steve's chart below.
Kass: Technology Breaks Down
Oct 19, 2012 | 12:30 PM EDT
Check Out Our Best Services for Investors
- $2.5+ million portfolio
- Large-cap and dividend focus
- Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.
- Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
- Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
- A custom stock screener
- Model portfolio
- Stocks trading below $10
- Intraday trade alerts
More than 30 investing pros with skin in the game give you actionable insight and investment ideas.