February Forecast for Trading Equities, Gold and Bonds

NEW YORK (TheGoldAndOilGuy.com) -- While trend lines are a great tool for identifying a weakening movement and reversals in the market, I don't put a lot of my analysis weighting on them.

Most of my timing and trading is based around what I call inner-market analysis (market stages, cycles, momentum and sentiment). Using these data, we can diagnose the overall health of the market. Knowing the strength of the market, we can then forecast short-term trend reversals with a high degree of accuracy.

In this report, I keep things clean and simple by using just trend lines. During the last three weeks, we have seen the price of stocks pull back. And because 2013 was such a strong year for stocks, most participants are expecting a sharp market correction to take place anytime now.

So with the recent price correction, fear is starting to enter the market, and money is rotating out of stocks and into the risk-off assets like gold and bonds.

Stocks tend to fall in times of economic uncertainty or fear. These same factors push investors toward the safety trades, or risk-off: high-quality bonds and precious metals. As more money goes from risk-on to risk-off, stocks will continue to fall and the safety trades will rise. The move by investors to select the safety of gold and bonds, compared with the volatility of stocks, will result in these risk plays moving in opposite directions.

Let's take a look at the chart below for a visual of what seems to be unfolding.

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How to Trade These Markets

While these markets look to be starting to reverse trends, it is critical that we understand how the market moves during reversals and also understand position/money management.

Getting short stocks and long precious metals in the long run could work out very well. But if you understand the price action that typically happens during reversals, you know that the stock market will become choppy, and we could see the recent highs tested or possibly even a new high made before price actually starts a down trend -- and the opposite situation for gold and bonds. Drawdowns can be huge when investing, and they are the reason I don't just shift directions at the first sign of a trend change.

Price reversals are a process, not an event. So it is important to follow along using a short-term time frame like the daily chart and play the intermediate trends that last four to 12 weeks in length. By doing this, you are trading in the direction of the most active cycle in the stock market, and you're positioned properly as a new trend starts.

Outlook: The Next Week or Two

1. Stocks will trade sideways or drift higher for three to six days, then I will be looking to get short. Again, cycle, sentiment and momentum analysis must remain down for me to short the market. If they turn back up, I will remain in cash until a setup forms for another short or long entry.

2. Gold remains in a down trend but is starting to break out to the upside. I do have concerns with the daily chart patterns for both gold and silver, so next week will be critical for them. We will be using some ETF trading strategies to take advantage of these moves.

3. Bond prices (not yields) look to be forming a bottom "W" pattern. They have had a big run in the last few weeks and are now testing resistance. I think a long bond position is slowly starting to unfold. But if we look at the futures price charts for both bonds and gold, they have not yet broken to the upside and have more work to do. As mentioned before, exchange-traded funds are not really the best tool for charting, but I show them because they are what the masses follow and trade.

This article represents the opinion of a contributor and not necessarily that of TheStreet or its editorial staff.

Chris Vermeulen is president and founder of AlgoTrades Systems. He also runs www.TheGoldAndOilGuy.com. Vermeulen is an internationally recognized market technical analyst, trader and author of Technical Trading Mastery: 7 Steps to Win With Logic. His research and trading advice have helped thousands of individual investors around the world. Vermeulen has designed automated trading systems for the S&P 500 to solve his clients' biggest investing problem: how to profit in both rising and falling markets.

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