Macy's Inc.  (M - Get Report) is America's premier mall anchor. It had its worst daily decline ever Thursday. The stock plunged 18% after the retailer reported holiday sales for November and December were sluggish. The mall giant reduced forward guidance as well. Shares of Dillard's Inc.  (DDS - Get Report) , JCPenney Company Inc.  (JCP - Get Report) and Nordstrom Inc.  (JWN - Get Report) fell in sympathy providing trading opportunities.

The backdrop for mall anchor problems began in mid-2015 as it became clear that online retail giant Amazon.com Inc.  (AMZN - Get Report) was stealing significant market share.

Macy's traded as high as $73.61 during the week of July 17, 2015 then suffered a bear market decline of 76% to as low as $17.41 the week of Nov. 10, 2017. This was a positive "key reversal" on the notion that a turnaround story would be successful. The stock rebounded by a bull market of 141% to a high of $41.99 during the week of Aug. 17, 2018. This week brought a negative "key reversal" and a failed test of its "reversion to the mean" at $40.47.

Shares of Dillard's traded as high as $144.21 the week of April 17, 2015 then suffered a bear market decline of 68% to a low $45.51 the week of May 12, 2017. We saw a negative "key reversal" the week of April 17, 2015. Their turnaround story saw a peak of $98.75 during the week of June 22, 2018 after a bull market gain of 116%. The stock has been tracking its "reversion to the mean" lower since the week of March 2, 2018 with the stock now below this key level now at $73.64.

Shares of JCPenney last tested its "reversion to the mean" between the weeks of Aug. 19, 2016 and Dec. 16, 2016 as this average declined from $10.58 to $9.70. The stock first broke below $3 per share during the week of Oct. 27, 2017. The subsequent high was $4.75 set during the week of March 2, 2018. The retailer's turnaround story has not been able to generate sales traction as the stock has been below $3.00 a share since the week of June 22, 2018. I consider a stock trading between $1 and $3 a share as an "option on survival" and the stock traded as low as 92 cents on Dec. 27. Investors who took this "all or nothing" bet are long the stock between $1 and $3 knowing that if JCPenney goes bust, they could lose their entire investment.

Shares of Nordstrom traded as high as $77.65 during the week of March 27, 2015 then suffered a bear market decline of 54% to a low of $35.01 during the week of July 1, 2016. Their turnaround story saw a peak of $67.70 during the week of Nov. 2, 2018 after a bull market gain of 93%. The stock has been below its "reversion to the mean" at $52.89 since around Nov. 16, 2018.

The Weekly Chart for Macy's

Courtesy of MetaStock Xenith

The weekly chart for Macy's is negative but oversold with the stock below its five-week modified moving average of $30.15 and below its 200-week simple moving average at $37.32, which is the "reversion to the mean". The stock has been below the "reversion to the mean" since around Nov. 11, 2015 and it's been a barrier since the week of June 8. Note the positive "key reversal" during the week of Nov. 10, 2017, defined by the close above the prior week's high. Note the negative "key reversal" during the week of Aug. 17 defined by the close below the prior week's low. The 12x3x3 weekly slow stochastic reading is projected end the week at 14.71 well below the oversold threshold of 20.00. There are three horizontal lines on the chart - My quarterly value level at $22.17 and monthly and annual risky levels at $38.13 and $51.56, respectively.

Given these charts and analysis, investors should buy on weakness to my quarterly value level of $22.27 and reduce holdings on strength to my monthly risky level at $38.13.

The Weekly Chart for Dillard's

Courtesy of MetaStock Xenith

The weekly chart for Dillard's will be positive if the stock ends above its five-week modified moving average at $64.53. The stock is below its 200-week simple moving average or "reversion to the mean" at $73.64 last tested during the week of Nov. 16. Note that the all-time intraday high of $144.21 was set during the week of April 17, 2015 - a negative weekly "key reversal" where the close was below the prior week's low. The 12x3x3 weekly slow stochastic reading is projected to rise to 21.51 this week, above the oversold threshold of 20.00.

Given these charts and analysis, buy Dillard's on the positive weekly close. Reduce holdings on strength to my quarterly and monthly risky levels of $70.17 and $74.68, respectively, which are the lower two of the horizontal lines on the chart.

The Weekly Chart for JCPenney

Courtesy of MetaStock Xenith

The chart for JCPenney will end the week positive, given a close above its five-week modified moving average of $1.26. The stock is well below its 200-week simple moving average or "reversion to the mean" at $6.03. The 12x3x3 weekly slow stochastic reading is projected to end the week at 21.30, rising above the oversold threshold of 20.00.

Investors who were willing to take the buy as an "option on survival" could have done so at my 2018 annual value level of 97 cents, which was tested at the Dec. 27 low of 92 cents. Reduce holdings on strength to my semiannual risky level of $3.42, which is the horizontal line on the chart.

The Weekly Chart for Nordstrom

Courtesy of MetaStock Xenith

The weekly chart for Nordstrom is negative but oversold, with the stock below its five-week modified moving average at $49.87. The stock is below its 200-week simple moving average or "reversion to the mean" at $52.89 last tested during the week of Nov. 30. Note how the "reversion to the mean" has been a magnet since the week of March 18, 2016. The 12x3x3 weekly slow stochastic reading is projected to end the week at 12.75 well below the oversold threshold of 20.00.

Given these charts and analysis, buy Nordstrom on a weekly close above my quarterly risky level at $50.33, which is the lower of three horizontal lines. Reduce holdings on strength to my monthly and annual risky levels of $57.83 and $64.11, respectively, which are the higher two horizontal lines on the chart.

Disclosure: The author has no positions in any stocks mentioned and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours.