On up days, the volume has been lower versus the down days, which have seen a pattern of increased volume. The S&P 500 Trust Series ETF (SPY) volume traded over 106 million shares. That was the first trading day of over 100 million shares since Feb. 20.
On Friday, the Dow Jones Industrial Average closed lower by 81.72 points to finish at 18,132.70 and the S&P 500 lost 6.24 points to finish at 2,104.50. The Nasdaq lost 24.36 points to close at 4,963.53 while the Russell 2000 was lower by 5.75 to finish at 1,233.37.
For the month of February, the DJIA gained 5.65%, the S&P 500 gained 5.49%, the Nasdaq 7.08% and the Russell 2000 gained 5.83%.
The big news on Friday was the release of the U.S. GDP report for the fourth quarter. The print showed a 2.2% gain. The yearly GDP gain for 2014 was 2.4%, a far cry from the 4% the Federal Reserve had wanted everyone to believe.
Going back to 2007, the GDP growth numbers are as follows: 2007 = 1.8%, 2008 = -0.3%, 2009 = -2.8%, 2010 = 2.5%, 2011 = 1.6%, 2012 = 2.3%, 2013 = 2.2% and 2014 = 2.4%. Folks, that appears to be very recessionary numbers at best. It certainly does not appear to be a strong, vibrant economy.
In addition, the Chicago PMI number crashed, showing a 45.8 number in February versus a 59.4 number in January.
The stock market is not the economy. However, this parabolic, centrally planned asset bubble cannot last forever. It seems the pieces of the puzzle are in place and traders and investors need to prepare for an event that will lead to the collapse of this asset bubble within the next year or so.
There is one more month left in the first quarter. The S&P 500 index is at an extraordinarily overbought condition based on my internal algorithm process. It would appear that extreme caution is in order and the risk is extremely high at these stock market levels. Do not chase this market. Buyer beware.