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Whiplash: S&P Veers to All-Time High Before Crashing

NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Was this stock market for real on Friday?

Not only did the S&P  set a new all-time high this morning and the DJIA (^DJI) was up over 100 points again, but the markets actually lost all those gains on Friday afternoon, with all the indexes turning red by the close. The DJIA closed at 16,298, down 33 points. The S&P 500 (^GSPC) closed down 6.18 points at 1865.84, after setting a new all-time high at 1883.97 intraday.

How can that possibly be taken as a bullish trading day?

By not closing at a new all-time high in the S&P, this market is making the bulls pretty uncomfortable heading into next week. This was triple-witching options expiration Friday, and the volume was huge. As has been the norm, volume on the down red days has been huge compared to the green up days.

Volatility has been the theme of this stock market so far in 2014. Patience and opportunistic trading are of utmost importance. If you do not have a process that works, it will continue to be a difficult stock market to navigate.

The dollar was down again on Friday and gold was up. There is a 90% inverse correlation between those two indicators. Growth-slowing sectors and inflation acceleration have been leading this market higher in 2014. Utilities and gold are the two sectors that have returned the most for 2014 so far. That is never a good sign for continued strength in the stock market.

Some stocks that closed up on the day were Facebook (FB), and International Paper(IP). Those two stocks were mentioned in Thursday's column as oversold. Safeway (SWY) and Xylem (XYL) were also mentioned and closed down slightly on the day. They are still in oversold territory.

What will happen next week is anyone's guess. The market close on Friday does not bode well on the edge for a bullish setup. Setting a new all-time high and not holding that level at the close has to be considered a bearish sign. However, It is to early to make predictions. "Bullish" and "Bearish" are talking points. Let the market be your guide.

There is one more trading week left in the quarter before earnings season kicks in. The fact the indexes are virtually flat for the year means that there are not many gains to protect for the mutual fund or hedge fund community. So, it will be interesting to see how next week plays out.

I did add two stocks to my trading account Friday. I bought CytRx (CYTR), a small-cap stock with a market cap of less than $4 billion, and iPath Pure Beta Coffee (CAFE), a commodity exchange-traded fund, as an inflation hedge.

At the time of publication, the author held  positions in CYTR and CAFE.

This article represents the opinion of a contributor and not necessarily that of TheStreet or its editorial staff.

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Chart of I:DJI
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