As recently as the first day of February, the euro sat at 52-week highs and EUO rested at 52-week lows. Today, EUO is on the verge of rising above a near-term trendline. The further EUO climbs, one might expect riskier stock assets to fall.
iShares DJ Home Construction
. I experienced a bit of criticism for suggesting that it is a
to buy any fund when its price is 22% above a 200-day moving average.
Well, ITB has lost about 7% in value, so it's not quite as overbought as it was when I last discussed the matter.
More critically, U.S. homebuilder confidence fell in February, while actual housing starts dropped 8.5% in January. Equally disconcerting, the upcoming sequestration cuts may have an adverse effect on real estate, from Superstorm Sandy reconstruction endeavors to the processing of FHA-backed home loans.
Low mortgage rates and the real estate recovery story have fueled the stock market. If ITB continues to deteriorate below its 50-day trendline and struggle there, a corrective phase for stock assets could take up residence.
PowerShares S&P 500 Low Volatility
. One of the easiest mechanisms for tracking changes in relative strength is a price ratio. For example, when low volatility funds like SPLV are underperforming the S&P 500 market at large, the SPLV:SPY price ratio would decline. In 2012, market peaks occurred near April and early September, when the SPLV:SPY price ratio hit low points.
In contrast, when SPLV:SPY is rising, and when it climbs above key trendlines like the 50-day, risk aversion may be back in vogue. The higher this ratio climbs, the better non-cyclical sectors perform (e.g., staples, utilities, health care).
This article was written by an independent contributor, separate from TheStreet's regular news coverage.