BALTIMORE ( Stockpickr) -- Even though February trading ended on a sour note yesterday, what a month it was for Mr. Market.All told, February 2012 closed the books with 4.1% gains in the S&P 500, making last month the best February investors had seen in the last 14 years. Yesterday's turn lower came after Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke's testimony to the House Financial Services Committee yesterday ignored the possibility for another round of quantitative easing. Hardest hit was gold, which fell 5% in yesterday's session, after futures tried to test the $1,800 level this week. Clearly, gold bugs had been pricing in the possibility of QE3 for a while now. >>13 Small-Caps Crushing Analysts' Estimates Even so, the signs still look auspicious for stock investors. Yesterday aside, S&P has rallied more than 8.6% so far in 2012, and corporate earnings remain at all-time highs. At the same time, key economic numbers like unemployment and consumer confidence have made strides toward recovery in the past few months. That doesn't mean that now's the time to start buying with both hands -- but it does mean that traders can find some big opportunities to squeeze gains out of the market in March. To do that, we're turning to the technicals in five of Wall Street's big-name stocks this week. If you're new to technical analysis, here's the executive summary: Technicals are a study of the market itself. Since the market is ultimately the only mechanism that determines a stock's price, technical analysis is a valuable tool even in the roughest of trading conditions. Technical charts are used every day by proprietary trading floors, Wall Street's biggest financial firms, and individual investors to get an edge on the market. And research shows that skilled technical traders can bank gains as much as 90% of the time. Every week, we take an in-depth look at large-cap stocks that are telling important technical stories. Here's this week's look at the technicals of five must-see stocks.
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