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Visa (V) - Get Free Report shares have underperformed those of rival credit-card processor MasterCard (MA) - Get Free Report by 11% over the last six months. But technical indications now suggest that Visa may be poised to make up lost ground against its competitor.

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The chart shows shares of MasterCard breaking above a two-month downtrend line in the beginning of the year and then continuing to climb to new all-time highs. Visa rallied over the same period, but fell short of retesting intermediate-term resistance in the $83.25 area.

Visa pulled back after the initial bounce and began consolidating in a small declining channel, forming a larger flag pattern, and last week broke above the flag downtrend line. There was strong follow-through price action in Tuesday's session with the stock up 1.3%, compared to MasterCard's gain of 0.26%, and a high which briefly touched the $83.49 level.

The relative strength index crossed above its center line at the end of last year and has tracked higher, reflecting continuing positive price momentum. Daily moving average convergence/divergence is overlaid on a weekly histogram of the oscillator. It is above its center line on both time frames, indicating positive short- and intermediate- term trend direction.

Chaikin money flow has moved into positive territory, suggesting that the flag breakout is being bought, which should help power a second break above the intermediate-term resistance level.

The flag pattern projects a price objective in the $87 area, which is arrived at by taking the height of the flagpole and adding it to the breakout point. A flag pattern is a continuation pattern, which means that if the move occurs, it should be quick and likely overtake the momentum in MasterCard shares.

Visa is a long candidate at its current level, using a trailing percentage stop.

This article is commentary by an independent contributor. At the time of publication, the author held no position in the stocks mentioned.