Nymex crude oil, Chevron (CVX) - Get Report and Exxon Mobil (XOM) - Get Report are solidly in bull market territory, but slowing momentum since Dec. 12 could be one reason why the Dow Jones Industrial Average has not been able to break out above 20,000 so far. If oil can pop higher once again, these energy components could have the momentum to be the upside catalyst.

Crude oil has been above a "golden cross" on its daily chart since May 10, when oil closed at $44.66 per barrel, vs. my annual pivot of $44.07. A "golden cross" occurs when the 50-day simple moving average rises above the 200-day simple moving average and signals that higher prices lie ahead. These bullish formations remain in play for crude oil and Chevron.

Chevron has been above a "golden cross" since March 31, when the stock closed at $95.40. Exxon Mobil had been above a "golden cross" since March 17, when the stock closed at $84.10. This bullish signal ended for Exxon on Nov. 1, when the stock closed at $83.65. This illustrates that a "golden cross" formation does not work all the time.

The weekly chart shows a red line through the price bars, marking the key weekly moving average (a five-week modified moving average). The green line is the 200-week simple moving average, the "reversion to the mean."

The study in red along the bottom of the chart is weekly momentum (a 12x3x3 weekly slow stochastic), which scales between 00.00 and 100.00, where readings above 80.00 indicate overbought and readings below 20.00 indicate oversold.

A negative weekly chart shows the stock below its key weekly moving average, with weekly momentum declining below 80.00 in a trend toward 20.00. A positive weekly chart shows the stock above its key weekly moving average, with weekly momentum rising above 20.00 in a trend toward 80.00.

Here's the weekly chart for crude oil.

Image placeholder title

Courtesy of MetaStock Xenith

Crude oil closed Wednesday at $52.53, up 41.8% year to date and solidly in bull market territory. It is 101.7% above its Feb. 11 low of $26.05. The stock is 3.6% below its Dec. 12 high of $54.51.

The weekly chart for crude oil is positive, with oil above its key weekly moving average of $49.65 but well below its 200-week simple moving average of $69.94. Oil has been below the 200-week since the week of Aug. 22, 2014, when the average was $96.17. The weekly momentum reading is projected to rise to 72.30 this week, up from 66.47 on Dec. 16.

Investors looking to buy crude oil should do so on weakness to $44.07, which remains a key level on technical charts until the end of 2016. Investors looking to reduce holdings should consider selling strength to $55.70 and $57.18, which are key levels on technical charts until the end of 2016.

Here's the weekly chart for Chevron.

Image placeholder title

Courtesy of MetaStock Xenith

Chevron closed Wednesday at $117.91, up 31.1% year to date and in bull market territory. It is 56.5% above its Jan. 20 low of $75.33. The stock set its 2016 high of $119 on Dec. 21.

The weekly chart for Chevron is positive but overbought, with the stock above its key weekly moving average of $112.19. The stock had been below its 200-week simple moving average since the week of Jan. 2, 2015, with this average now $108.99. The stock has been above this "reversion to the mean" since the week of Nov. 25, helped by the pending energy policy expected from the Trump administration, which will focus on fossil fuels. The weekly momentum reading is projected to rise to 91.73 this week, up from 89.51 on Dec. 16, moving further above the overbought threshold of 80.00.

Investors looking to buy Chevron should consider doing so on weakness to $113.90, which is a key level on technical charts until the end of December. Investors looking to reduce holdings should consider selling strength to $121.39, which is a key level on technical charts until the end of 2016.

Here's the weekly chart for Exxon Mobil.

Image placeholder title

Courtesy of MetaStock Xenith

Exxon Mobil closed Wednesday at $90.28, up 15.8% year to date and in bull market territory. It is 26.2% above its Jan. 20 low of $71.55. The stock is 3.1% below its Dec, 13 high of $93.21.

The weekly chart for Exxon is positive, with the stock closing above its key weekly moving average of $88.16. The stock has been trading back and forth around its 200-week simple moving average since the week of April 29, with this average now $89.20. The trading range has seen a high of $95.55 during the week of July 15 and a low of 82.29 during the week of Sept. 30. The stock gapped above its 200-week simple moving average during the week of Dec. 16. The weekly momentum reading is projected to rise to 73.36 this week, up from 67.82 on Dec. 16.

Investors looking to buy Exxon Mobil should consider doing so on weakness to $83.08, which is a key level on technical charts until the end of 2016. Investors looking to reduce holdings should consider doing so on strength to $92.51, which is a key level on technical charts until the end of December, which was tested on Dec. 13.

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