NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- While others may be wringing their hands over deflation and weak commodity prices, we thought we would put on our contrarian hat for a while and look at the Materials Select Sector SPDR Fund ETF (XLB) - Get Report .
The XLB, chart above, made a slightly lower peak in May and turned down in earnest. Like most of the broad market, the XLB made a more rapid decline in late August. This ETF has since made a lower low, breaking below the August trough. Despite the new low in prices, we can see that the momentum study is not making a new low, see bottom panel. This is called a positive or bullish divergence by chartists and tells us that prices could be turning.
The slow stochastic study, middle panel, is an oversold/overbought indicator that looks at where in the range prices close. Have you ever noticed that at market lows the closes tend to be clustered near the lows of the day? At market peaks, the closes tend to be clustered near the highs of the day as everyone wants to be long. Readings below 20, or better, below 15, on the stochastic indicator tend to mark lows.
Bottoms are a process, but the process may have started for the materials sector. Read our story on Glencore PLC for a closer look at specific metals.