NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- TD Ameritrade's (AMTD) Investor Movement Index showed clients were net buyers of equities for the month of May, with the IMX's third-largest percentage increase month-over-month since the tracking of the index began.
Chief Strategist JJ Kinahan said the IMX, a measure of investor sentiment, showed that the macro picture shifted a bit as clients bought stock with increasing volatility, while they also boosted their options exposure.
TD Ameritrade saw a trend change in the stocks clients were net sellers of, which were the dividend-paying issuers. Kinahan said selling was notable in names like Citigroup (C), Microsoft (MSFT) and General Electric (GE), which saw selling for the second month in a row. Earlier in the year, those were stocks that clients were generally accumulating, so Kinahan said it was good to see them taking profits in shares and looking for opportunities elsewhere.
Markets do not like the uncertainty of the interest rate-hike speculation, Kinahan said. A 25 basis-point raise wouldn't make that much of a difference, but the questionable timing is what is keeping the market on edge, he said. The uncertainty lends to scouring of day-to-day news, meaning any little piece of data gets blown out of proportion, he said.
Outside of volatility related to the interest-rate speculation and Greece's debt repayment delay, Kinahan said the market is healthy and has been trading in a tight range since May 7, so longer-term investors should not get caught up in the minutiae. For day and swing traders, Kinahan said there has been a lot of opportunity with the big intraday moves.