NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- On Wednesday, mall anchors Dillards (DDS - Get Report) and Macy's (M - Get Report) set all-time intraday highs of $140.85 and $69.98, respectively. Nordstrom (JWN - Get Report) , meanwhile, set its all-time intraday high of $83.16 on March 23.

With consumer spending below par, investors should track the technicals shown on daily and weekly charts to gauge whether or not momentum can continue to drive shares higher. Key levels on these charts can be used to adjust positions; to buy on weakness or to sell on strength.

Investors not familiar with technical analysis should begin with the notion that the price chart for a stock shows a road map of its past performance, which provides guidance for predicting its future share price direction.

Here's how to read a daily chart. There are two moving averages to follow; the 50-day simple moving average is in blue and the 200-day simple moving average is in green.

Here's the daily chart for Dillards.


Courtesy of MetaStock Xenith

Dillards had a close of $140.71 on Wednesday and has a gain of 12% year to date with the stock setting an all-time intraday high of $140.85 also on Wednesday. Note how weakness to the 200-day simple moving average provided buying opportunities since Feb. 3, 2014 when that average was $85.14. The stock is currently above its 50-day and 200-day simple moving averages at $128.10 and $117.86, respectively.

Next, here's how to read a weekly chart. The red line tracks the ups and downs of the key weekly moving average. The green line is the 200-week simple moving average. The red line that oscillates along the bottom of the chart is the momentum reading on a scale of 00.00 to 100.00. A reading below 20.00 is oversold and a reading above 80.00 is overbought.

A technically positive weekly chart occurs when a stock ends a week above its key weekly moving average with the momentum reading rising above 20.00. A technically negative weekly chart occurs when a stock ends a week below its key weekly moving average with the momentum reading declining below 80.00.

Here's the weekly chart for Dillards. This one shows weekly price bars going back to the beginning of 2009, when the current bull market for stocks began. 


Courtesy of MetaStock Xenith

The weekly chart for Dillards is positive but overbought, with the stock above its key weekly moving average of $132.72 with a momentum reading of 91.28 -- well above the overbought threshold of 80.00. The 200-week simple moving average is the long-term "reversion to the mean" at $83.64.

Investors looking to buy Dillards should place a good until canceled limit order to purchase the stock if it drops to $122.76, which will be a key level on technical charts until the end of April.

Investors looking to book profits should place a good until canceled limit order to sell the stock if it rises to $145.42, which will be a key level on technical charts until the end of the week.

A price gap below $139.90 and $137.82 indicates a potential correction for the stock. These levels are on technical charts until the end of June.

Here's the daily chart for Nordstrom.


Courtesy of MetaStock Xenith

Nordstrom closed at $80.50 on Wednesday, 3.2% below its all-time intraday high of $83.16 set on March 23, but the stock has risen 1.4% year-to-date. The stock has been above its 200-day simple moving average since Feb. 26, 2014, when this average was $59.51.

If the stock trends below its 50-day simple moving average of $79.75, there is risk of a correction to the 200-day simple moving average at $73.70.

Here's the weekly chart for Nordstrom.


Courtesy of MetaStock Xenith

The weekly chart for Nordstrom will shift to negative if the stock ends the week below its key weekly moving average of $80.04. The stock's momentum reading of 75.05 is declining below the overbought threshold of 80.00. The 200-week simple moving average is the long-term "reversion to the mean" at $59.20.

Investors looking to buy Nordstrom should place a good until canceled limit order to purchase the stock if it drops to $51.50, which will be a key level on technical charts until the end of 2015.

Investors looking to book profits should place a good until canceled limit order to sell the stock if it rises to $82.60, which will be a key level on technical charts until the end of April.

The stock straddles $79.45 and $81.82, which will be key levels on technical charts until the end of June. A price gap below these levels enhances a technical correction.

Here's the daily chart for Macy's.


Courtesy of MetaStock Xenith

Macy's closed at $69.80 on Wednesday, and has risen 6.2% year-to-date. And, as mentioned previously, the stock hit its all-time intraday high of $69.98 Wednesday. Note how weakness to the 200-day simple moving average provided buying opportunities since Aug. 27, 2013, when that average was $43.48. The stock is currently above its 50-day and 200-day simple moving averages at $64.43 and $61.40, respectively.

Here's the weekly chart for Macy's.


Courtesy of MetaStock Xenith

The weekly chart for Macy's is positive, with the stock above its key weekly moving average of $65.78, and a momentum reading of 58.70 rising above last week's reading of 50.58. The 200-week simple moving average is the long-term "reversion to the mean" at $45.95.

Investors looking to buy Macy's should place a good until canceled limit order to purchase the stock if it drops to $65.92, which will be a key level on technical charts until the end of the week.

Investors looking to book profits should place a good until canceled limit order to sell the stock if it rises to $72.64, which will be a key level on technical charts until the end of the June.

A price gap below a key level at $68.07 provides a warning that expires at the end on June.

This article is commentary by an independent contributor. At the time of publication, the author held no positions in the stocks mentioned.