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TD Ameritrade's IMX Vs. S&P 500. (Graphic: TD Ameritrade)

TD Ameritrade, Inc. (“TD Ameritrade”), a broker-dealer subsidiary of TD Ameritrade Holding Corporation (NYSE: AMTD), is today revealing the Investor Movement Index SM reading for September 2013. The Investor Movement Index, or the IMX SM, is a proprietary, behavior-based index created by TD Ameritrade that aggregates Main Street investor positions and activity to measure what investors are actually doing and how they are positioned in the markets.

The September 2013 Investor Movement Index for the four weeks ending September 27, 2013, reveals:

  • Reading: 4.97 (compared to 5.16 in August)
  • Trend direction: Negative
  • Trend length: 1 month
  • Score relative to historic ranges: Moderately high

September’s IMX reading marks a negative change in direction after a positive increase in August. Clients dialed back equity market exposure in September. Over the last few months investors have continued a pattern of advancing exposure on market dips and rolling back exposure when equity markets reached record levels. Clients seemed to anticipate a rally and built up positions in August. As the S&P 500 traded at record levels in September, clients reduced their equity exposure and were net sellers of equities. The September IMX remains moderately high compared to its historical range as portfolios were bullishly positioned overall, but the recent drop in the IMX indicates that client portfolios are less aggressively positioned. Clients may be anticipating a pullback in the equity markets. Like the last couple months, clients were net sellers of fixed income mutual funds and fixed income ETFs.

“Once again it seems our clients anticipated market moves and repositioned their equity market exposure accordingly,” said Nicole Sherrod, managing director of TD Ameritrade’s Trader Group. “In particular, as Apple’s (AAPL) stock price was volatile in September TD Ameritrade clients were net buyers and accumulated the name. Facebook (FB) continues to be favored by our clients and they added to their positions as the stock rallied to new highs.”

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