This Day On The Street
Continue to site
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here

Rev Shark: An Odd Market Day

The market experienced some of the oddest action we've had in a while. It wasn't bad at all but it was quite peculiar. Breadth was just about flat and most of the stocks that have been recent leaders did very little. What led today were financials and old technology names like U.S. Steel (X), AT&T (T), Citigroup (C) and Microsoft (MSFT).

It is better to have buying interest in these stodgy names, but the more important question is whether this is a sign of a healthy market. Seldom do these stocks lead the market for very long. In a good market, there are always names with better growth that will have better relative strength. We might see financials lead for a day or two, but eventually they will lag as the market stumbles or something else starts attracting the momentum money.

There was some speculative action in junk small-caps under the surface -- China Recycling Energy Corp. (CREG), BioFuel Energy (BIOF), Quantum Fuel Systems Technologies Worldwide (QTWW), Aastrom Biosciences (ASTM) and Sinovac Biotech (SVA). That sort of action seems healthier to me than this surge in financials and 1990 technology because it reflects an appetite for higher risk.

We'll see where this action leads but I find it more worrisome than positive. We need good growth names like Facebook (FB) and Google (GOOG)to lead again, but they aren't doing much at all.

Have a good evening I'll see you tomorrow.

March 20, 2014 | 2:34 PM EDT

Back on Track

  • Seldom have we had a strong market led by such a strange brew.

The indices are back on track but it is an odd brew of action. Banks are leading as traders anticipate stress-test results and the ability to increase dividends, and conservative big-caps Microsoft (MSFT) and U.S. Steel (X) are leading to the upside. Breadth is running about even and the names we usually look to for leadership, Facebook (FB), Google (GOOG), Amazon (AMZN) and Tesla (TSLA), are doing little.

The best markets tend to have good speculative action in small-cap names and tend to have strong themes or sector movement. A few things are moving but, overall, the money is flowing in new directions.

The bulls say that this is a healthy rotation, but seldom have we had a strong market led by the likes of Hewlett-Packard (HPQ) and money-center banks.

Of course, looking for flaws in this market has been a fool's game for a long time. The right approach has been to focus on what can go right rather than what is wrong. We'll see how we close, but I'm not interested in buying right now.

March 20, 2014 | 10:34 AM EDT

Fed Worries Don't Take Hold

  • Dip-buyers show up again.

Did you really think the dip-buyers weren't going to show up again? We never seem to stay down on Fed worries for long, but there is a shift in the action as market players buy old stodgy technology names like Microsoft (MSFT), Hewlett-Packard (HPQ) and Intel (INTC). Banks are also seeing interest while favored momentum names and small-cap speculative plays are very choppy.

The dip-buying action is sucking in some chasers and squeezing anticipatory bears. This sort of action has played out repeatedly, and it just goes to show how Fed worries aren't taking hold.

I don't have much new going on. I started a position in BioFuel Energy (BIOF), but I'm not willing to pay up for entries until later today. We have odd leadership and lagging breadth, which typically doesn't favor the sorts of stocks that I trade. We definitely are seeing signs of underlying support, but I want to see if they persist.

March 20, 2014 | 8:24 AM EDT

Conditions Ripe for a Change in Mood

  • The action hasn't been all that healthy this week.

It is error alone which needs the support of government. Truth can stand by itself.

 --Thomas Jefferson

In early December, many folks were worried that the market would sell off when the Fed announced that it would start to taper off its quantitative easing (QE) program. When the first round of tapering was announced on Dec. 18, 2013 the market rallied sharply and we finished the year with a strong run.

2014 started off a bit rocky but the market bounced big in February and has run back up the highs. The Fed's tapering program has been a nonevent as the market has come to believe that the economy is strong enough to handle it and the Fed will relent should conditions change.

Yesterday, the Fed announced its second round of tapering. It was well anticipated but the market mood turned sour as Janet Yellen was quite clear about how tapering would continue and interest rates will eventually go up six months or so after the bond buying stops.

None of this is surprising, but it reminded the market that the Fed isn't going to supply cheap money forever. Those who have abided by the old adage "don' fight the Fed" have done extremely well for years now, and we have to recognize that that dynamic is not going to last forever.

Typically, the market has done a very good job of shaking off these sorts of worry quite quickly but we have some technical challenges and slowing momentum to deal with. We had a very good two day bounce on Monday and Tuesday which had many bulls comfortable that our old friend, the V-shaped bounce, would have us sailing to new highs but after yesterday we have to consider the chances that we may see a failed bounce now.

The key here is that the market holds above last week's low. For the S&P 500, that is around 1840 and for the Nasdaq the level is around 4240. We have some room about those levels and we did see the dip-buyers step up late yesterday. However, the conditions for a change in market mood are high.

Despite the good bounce earlier this week, the market action hasn't been that healthy. The bounce came on low volume, we continue to lack leadership and the pockets of momentum have become increasingly sparse. We have had quite a few technical distribution days and there just isn't the same buying pressure we saw during the month of February.

I don't want to sound too negative as that is the easiest mistake to make in this market. Just when it looks like the market is about to roll over, it seems to find our footing and forgot all the cares and worries. One day that isn't going to happen and a real correction will kick in, so we need to be vigilant but we don't want to be overly anticipatory.

We have a slow start this morning and we'll see what the dip-buyers can do as they shrug off Janet Yellen and her reminder that maybe the Fed won't always be there to support us.

James "Rev Shark" DePorre is the author of Invest Like a Shark: How a Deaf Guy with No Job and Limited Capital made a Fortune Investing in the Stock Market. He is founder and CEO of Shark Asset Management, an investment management firm, and he also operates, an interactive online community that serves and educates active investors. DePorre holds business and law degrees from the University of Michigan, is a member of the Michigan Bar Association and a former tax attorney and CPA. He lives in Anna Maria Island, Fla., with his wife and two children. Under no circumstances does the information in this column represent a recommendation to buy or sell stocks. Rev Shark appreciates your feedback; click here.

At the time of publication, Rev Shark was long CREG, QTWW and BIOF, although positions may change at any time.

Check Out Our Best Services for Investors

Action Alerts PLUS

Portfolio Manager Jim Cramer and Director of Research Jack Mohr reveal their investment tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
Quant Ratings

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
Stocks Under $10

David Peltier uncovers low dollar stocks with serious upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
14-Days Free
Only $9.95
14-Days Free
Dividend Stock Advisor

David Peltier identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Trifecta Stocks

Every recommendation goes through 3 layers of intense scrutiny—quantitative, fundamental and technical analysis—to maximize profit potential and minimize risk.

Product Features:
  • Model Portfolio
  • Intra Day Trade alerts
  • Access to Quant Ratings
Real Money

More than 30 investing pros with skin in the game give you actionable insight and investment ideas.

Product Features:
  • Access to Jim Cramer's daily blog
  • Intraday commentary and news
  • Real-time trading forums
Only $49.95
14-Days Free
14-Days Free


Chart of I:DJI
DOW 17,750.91 -140.25 -0.78%
S&P 500 2,063.37 -18.06 -0.87%
NASDAQ 4,763.2240 -54.37 -1.13%

Our Tweets

Free Reports

Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs