BALTIMORE (Stockpickr) -- "Mixed trading" has been the go-to phrase for market analysts in 2014 the S&P 500 index has managed to move up all of 1.3% as I write today, churning sideways for almost the last four straight months. In the context of the rip-roaring rally that stocks brought in 2013, that's a frustrating change of pace for most investors.
And institutions are reacting by pulling money out of the market.
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It's hard to understate just how mediocre stocks have performed this year as an asset class. For example, if you'd bought 10-year U.S. treasuries at the start of the year, you'd be outperforming the S&P 500 by two and a half times without nearly the risk.
But the frustration over stocks is boiling over in May. And while the market averages continue to churn, big individual names are showing some very attractive trades again. That's why we're taking a technical look at trading setups in five of Wall Street's biggest stocks today.
If you're new to technical analysis, here's the executive summary.
Technicals are a study of the market itself. Since the market is ultimately the only mechanism that determines a stock's price, technical analysis is a valuable tool even in the roughest of trading conditions. Technical charts are used every day by proprietary trading floors, Wall Street's biggest financial firms, and individual investors to get an edge on the market. And research shows that skilled technical traders can bank gains as much as 90% of the time.
Every week, I take an in-depth look at big names that are telling important technical stories. Here's this week's look at five high-volume stocks to trade this week.