U.S. stocks are higher early Thursday, rising amid renewed optimism over fiscal-stimulus prospects.
Against this backdrop, each big three U.S. benchmark has challenged its prevailing range top — levels defining record highs — amid a slow-motion breakout attempt.
Before detailing the U.S. markets’ wider view, the S&P 500’s US:SPX hourly chart highlights the past two weeks.
As illustrated, the S&P remains range-bound. The prevailing flag pattern — the tight five-session range — is a bullish continuation pattern.
From current levels, the S&P’s record close (3,824.68) and absolute record peak (3,826.69) remain just overhead.
Similarly, the Dow Jones Industrial Average US:DJIA has asserted a bullish holding pattern.
To reiterate, the blue-chip benchmark’s record close (31,097.97) and absolute record peak (31,193.40) are under siege early Thursday.
The early session high (31,223) has marked a nominal new record amid a breakout attempt that remains underway.
Against this backdrop, the Nasdaq Composite US:COMP has also sustained its recent breakout.
Here again, the Nasdaq’s record close (13,201.97) and absolute record peak (13,208.09) have been challenged early Thursday.
Conversely, recall that the breakout point (12,973) has underpinned the prevailing range. Bullish price action.
Widening the view to six months adds perspective.
On this wider view, the Nasdaq has sustained its January breakout.
Recall that Tuesday’s session low (12,964) closely matched the breakout point (12,973) to punctuate a successful retest.
On further strength, a near-term target projects to the 13,450 area.
Looking elsewhere, the Dow Jones Industrial Average has sustained a technically more aggressive breakout.
As detailed repeatedly, the initial spike marked a two standard deviation breakout, encompassing three straight closes atop the 20-day Bollinger bands.
The index has subsequently hugged the 31,000 mark amid still muted selling pressure.
The prevailing flag pattern — following the statistically unusual breakout — improves the chances of upside follow-through. The Dow has tagged a nominal new high early Thursday.
Similarly, the S&P 500 is digesting a decisive early-January breakout.
In its case, the index has not strayed too far from the 3,800 mark, notching three straight closes within 10 points of the round number.
The bigger picture
Collectively, the major U.S. benchmarks remain range-bound, consolidating statistically unusual early-month breakouts.
Still, range-bound is bullish against the prevailing backdrop.
Moreover, the Nasdaq Composite and Dow industrials briefly tagged nominal new highs early Thursday, rising amid a slow-motion breakout attempt of sorts.
Moving to the small-caps, the iShares Russell 2000 ETF US:IWM is refusing to pull in.
Recall that its strong 5.0% January breakout confirms the primary uptrend.
Similarly, the SPDR S&P MidCap 400 ETF US:MDY has formed a flag-like pattern, of sorts, amid recently decreased volume.
Recall that the small- and mid-cap breakouts initially encompassed four closes atop the 20-day volatility bands across a five-session span. Bullish price action for the longer-term.
Looking elsewhere, the SPDR Trust S&P 500 US:SPY is consolidating a less-decisive breakout.
Here again, this week’s bull flag has formed amid decreased volume, improving the chances of eventual upside follow-through.
Placing a finer point on the S&P 500, the index has effectively flatlined just under record highs. (The 3,800 mark almost bisects the prevailing range.)
Tactically, the prevailing range bottom (3,783) is followed by support, circa 3,764.
Delving deeper, the 3,723-to-3,726 area marks the S&P’s first significant floor, levels matching the December gap and the former breakout point.
Widening to the six-month view, the S&P’s prevailing flag pattern punctuates a statistically unusual early-January breakout.
Slightly more broadly, the prevailing grinding-higher follow-through — hinged to the late-2020 double bottom — has been underpinned by the 20-day moving average, currently 3,744. As always, the 20-day is a a widely-tracked near-term trending indicator.
Delving deeper, the S&P’s 50-day moving average, currently 3,660, is followed by the former breakout point (3,646), an area that underpinned the December range.
As always, it’s not just what an index does, it’s how it does it. But broadly speaking, the S&P’s intermediate-term bias remains bullish barring a violation of these areas.
Thursday’s Watch List
The charts below detail names that are technically well positioned. These are radar screen names — sectors or stocks poised to move in the near term. For the original comments on the stocks below, see The Technical Indicator Library.
Drilling down further, the SPDR S&P Homebuilders ETF US:XHB is acting well technically.
As illustrated, the group has reached record highs, edging atop resistance matching the December peak.
The prevailing upturn punctuates a successful test of the 50-day moving average. A near-term target projects to the 63 area.
More broadly, the group is breaking out even amid recently surging Treasury yields, most recently detailed Tuesday. Though rising interest rates would conventionally present a sector headwind, rates are currently lifting from historic lows, and remain nominally low.
Zebra Technologies Corp. US:ZBRA is a large-cap developer of data-capture and automatic-identification solutions.
Earlier this month, the shares knifed to all-time highs, rising from a tight December range — a bullish continuation pattern — hinged to the steep November rally.
More immediately, the prevailing flag-like pattern signals still muted selling pressure, positioning the shares to extend the uptrend. Tactically, a sustained posture atop the breakout point (388.90) signals a bullish bias.
Initially profiled Nov. 18, Kohl’s Corp. US:KSS has returned 54.3% and remains well positioned.
Technically, the shares have knifed from the December range, reaching 10-month highs.
Though near-term extended, and due to consolidate, the shares are attractive on a pullback. The breakout point (41.00) marks well-defined support.
More broadly, the shares are well positioned on the three-year chart, rising atop the February 2020 breakdown point.
Williams-Sonoma, Inc. US:WSM is a large-cap home furnishings retailer. (Yield = 1.8%.)
As illustrated, the shares have knifed to record highs. The nearly straightline spike marks a two standard deviation breakout, encompassing consecutive closes atop the 20-day volatility bands.
Though near-term extended, the decisive strong-volume breakout improves the chances of longer-term follow-through. A well-defined floor matches the breakout point (113.40).
Juniper Networks, Inc. US:JNPR is a well positioned large-cap name. (Yield = 3.3%.)
The shares started January with a breakout, knifing atop the 200-day moving average to reach four-month highs.
The subsequent pullback has been comparably flat, placing the shares 3.1% under the January peak. Tactically, the breakout point, circa 23.50, is followed by the deeper 200-day moving average, currently 22.88. The prevailing rally attempt is intact barring a violation.
Finally, Fate Therapeutics, Inc. US:FATE is a well positioned large-cap biotech name.
The shares initially spiked five weeks ago, gapping higher after positive early-phase trial results for the company’s cancer treatment.
The January follow-through has been fueled by a volume spike, placing the shares at record highs.
And more immediately, the prevailing flag pattern has formed amid decreased volume, positioning the shares to build on recent breakouts. Tactically, the post-breakout low (107.40) is followed by the former range top (102.30).
Still well positioned
The table below includes names recently profiled in The Technical Indicator that remain well positioned. For the original comments, see The Technical Indicator Library.
|Company||Symbol* (Click symbol for chart.)||Date Profiled|
|SolarEdge Technologies, Inc.||SEDG||Jan. 12|
|Chegg, Inc.||CHGG||Jan. 11|
|Ambarella, Inc.||AMBA||Jan. 11|
|Macy’s, Inc.||M||Jan. 11|
|Nexstar Media Group, Inc.||NXST||Jan. 11|
|iShares Transportation Average ETF||IYT||Jan. 11|
|Energy Select Sector SPDR||XLE||Jan. 8|
|Teledoc Health, Inc.||TDOC||Jan. 8|
|Dollar Tree, Inc.||DLTR||Jan. 8|
|Skyworks Solutions, Inc.||SWKS||Jan. 7|
|DexCom, Inc.||DXCM||Jan. 7|
|Financial Select Sector SPDR||XLF||Jan. 7|
|Devon Energy Corp.||DVN||Jan. 6|
|Alcoa Corp.||AA||Jan. 6|
|FireEye, Inc.||FEYE||Jan. 5|
|Check Point Software Technologies||CHKP||Jan. 4|
|Synaptics, Inc.||SYNA||Jan. 4|
|Ceridian HCM Holding, Inc.||CDAY||Jan. 4|
|Lumentum Holdings, Inc.||LITE||Dec. 23|
|Sunrun, Inc.||RUN||Dec. 23|
|ShockWave Medical, Inc.||SWAV||Dec. 23|
|JPMorgan Chase & Co.||JPM||Dec. 22|
|Coupa Software, Inc.||COUP||Dec. 22|
|PagSeguro Digital Ltd.||PAGS||Dec. 22|
|Ballard Power Systems, Inc.||BLDP||Dec. 21|
|LivePerson, Inc.||LPSN||Dec. 21|
|United Therapeutics Corp.||UTHR||Dec. 21|
|Shopify, Inc.||SHOP||Dec. 18|
|CyberArk Software Ltd.||CYBR||Dec. 18|
|Apellis Pharmaceuticals, Inc.||APLS||Dec. 18|
|iShares Silver Trust||SLV||Dec. 17|
|Calix, Inc.||CALX||Dec. 17|
|Elastic N.V.||ESTC||Dec. 17|
|Cerner Corp.||CERN||Dec. 17|
|Universal Health Services, Inc.||UHS||Dec. 16|
|Tenet Healthcare Corp.||THC||Dec. 16|
|Sunnova Energy International, Inc.||NOVA||Dec. 16|
|Xilinx, Inc.||XLNX||Dec. 15|
|Toyota Motor Co.||TM||Dec. 15|
|Williams-Sonoma, Inc.||WSM||Dec. 15|
|iShares Nasdaq Biotechnology ETF||IBB||Dec. 15|
|SDPR S&P Regional Banking ETF||KRE||Dec. 14|
|Etsy, Inc.||ETSY||Dec. 14|
|Surface Oncology, Inc.||SURF||Dec. 14|
|Autodesk, Inc.||ADSK||Dec. 9|
|Monster Beverage Corp.||MNST||Dec. 9|
|Cimarex Energy Co.||XEC||Dec. 9|
|Plug Power, Inc.||PLUG||Dec. 9|
|F5 Networks, Inc.||FFIV||Dec. 8|
|Emerson Electric Co.||EMR||Dec. 8|
|Zscaler, Inc.||ZS||Dec. 7|
|Fortinet, Inc.||FTNT||Dec. 7|
|Kulicke and Soffa Industries, Inc.||KLIC||Dec. 7|
|Honeywell International, Inc.||HON||Dec. 7|
|Dillard’s, Inc.||DDS||Dec. 4|
|Caleres, Inc.||CAL||Dec. 4|
|Spotify Technology S.A.||SPOT||Dec. 3|
|Align Technology, Inc.||ALGN||Dec. 3|
|Valero Energy Corp.||VLO||Dec. 3|
|Analog Devices, Inc.||ADI||Dec. 2|
|Cirrus Logic, Inc.||CRUS||Dec. 1|
|Sonos, Inc.||SONO||Dec. 1|
|Dollar Tree, Inc.||DLTR||Dec. 1|
|Nuance Communications, Inc.||NUAN||Nov. 30|
|Northern Trust Corp.||NTRS||Nov. 30|
|American Airlines Group, Inc.||AAL||Nov. 30|
|Microchip Technology, Inc.||MCHP||Nov. 24|
|Zillow Group, Inc.||ZG||Nov. 23|
|Yeti Holdings, Inc.||YETI||Nov. 23|
|Palo Alto Networks, Inc.||PANW||Nov. 20|
|Bank of America Corp.||BAC||Nov. 20|
|Eaton Corp.||ETN||Nov. 20|
|SPDR S&P Oil & Gas Exploration and Production ETF||XOP||Nov. 20|
|MetLife, Inc.||MET||Nov. 19|
|Hilton Worldwide Holdings, Inc.||HLT||Nov. 19|
|American Express Co.||AXP||Nov. 18|
|Kohl’s Corp.||KSS||Nov. 18|
|FleetCor Technologies||FLT||Nov. 18|
|Applied Materials, Inc.||AMAT||Nov. 17|
|Delta Air Lines, Inc.||DAL||Nov. 17|
|Consumer Staples Select Sector SPDR||XLP||Nov. 17|
|Ross Stores, Inc.||ROST||Nov. 16|
|RingCentral, Inc.||RNG||Nov. 13|
|Regions Financial Corp.||RF||Nov. 13|
|iShares Europe ETF||IEV||Nov. 13|
|Flex, Inc.||FLEX||Nov. 9|
|Snap, Inc.||SNAP||Nov. 9|
|Norfolk Southern Corp.||NSC||Nov. 9|
|Communications Services Select Sector SPDR||XLC||Nov. 5|
|Health Care Select Sector SPDR||XLV||Nov. 5|
|Alphabet, Inc.||GOOGL||Nov. 5|
|Uber Technologies, Inc.||UBER||Nov. 5|
|Keysight Technologies, Inc.||KEYS||Nov. 4|
|Harley-Davidson, Inc.||HOG||Nov. 4|
|Garmin, Ltd.||GRMN||Nov. 4|
|Pinterest, Inc.||PINS||Nov. 3|
|Sony Corp.||SNE||Nov. 3|
|8×8, Inc.||EGHT||Nov. 3|
|Exact Sciences Corp.||EXAS||Nov. 2|
|Universal Display Corp.||OLED||Nov. 2|
|Dentsply Sirona, Inc.||XRAY||Oct. 27|
|Maxim Integrated Products, Inc.||MXIM||Oct. 21|
|The Travelers Companies, Inc.||TRV||Oct. 21|
|Micron Technology, Inc.||MU||Oct. 20|
|Vulcan Materials Co.||VMC||Oct. 19|
|ON Semiconductor Corp.||ON||Oct. 16|
|Ford Motor Co.||F||Oct. 15|
|Texas Instruments, Inc.||TXN||Oct. 15|
|First Solar, Inc.||FSLR||Oct. 13|
|Nevro Corp.||NVRO||Oct. 12|
|Teradyne, Inc.||TER||Oct. 12|
|SPDR S&P Homebuilders ETF||XHB||Oct. 9|
|Shake Shack, Inc.||SHAK||Oct. 9|
|SPDR S&P Biotech ETF||XBI||Oct. 8|
|Twilio, Inc.||TWLO||Oct. 8|
|Cloudflare, Inc.||NET||Oct. 7|
|Ceridian HCM Holding, Inc.||CDAY||Oct. 7|
|RSailPoint Technology Holdings, Inc.||SAIL||Oct. 1|
|Martin Marietta Materials, Inc.||MLM||Sept. 30|
|Abercrombie & Fitch Co.||ANF||Sept. 29|
|Zendesk, Inc.||ZEN||Sept. 23|
|Scientific Games Corp.||SGMS||Sept. 23|
|Crocs, Inc.||CROX||Sept. 14|
|Five Below, Inc.||FIVE||Sept. 10|
|Eastman Chemical Co.||EMN||Sept. 10|
|International Paper Co.||IP||Sept. 3|
|Anaplan, Inc.||PLAN||Sept. 2|
|Celanese Corp.||CE||Aug. 26|
|Westlake Chemical Corp.||WLK||Aug. 25|
|Deere & Co.||DE||Aug. 24|
|Expedia Group, Inc.||EXPE||Aug. 24|
|Johnson Controls International||JCI||Aug. 21|
|Canadian Solar, Inc.||CSIQ||Aug. 20|
|General Motors Co.||GM||Aug. 20|
|Starbucks Corp.||SBUX||Aug. 18|
|Builders FirstSource, Inc.||BLDR||Aug. 18|
|Steel Dynamics, Inc.||STLD||Aug. 17|
|Brinker International, Inc.||EAT||Aug. 13|
|Enphase Energy, Inc.||ENPH||Aug. 13|
|Nucor Corp.||NUE||Aug. 11|
|Freeport McMoRan, Inc.||FCX||Aug. 10|
|Natera, Inc.||NTRA||Aug. 10|
|Industrial Select Sector SPDR||XLI||Aug. 6|
|Penn National Gaming, Inc.||PENN||July 30|
|SPDR S&P Metals & Mining ETF||XME||July 28|
|iShares MSCI South Korea ETF||EWY||July 28|
|Advanced Micro Devices, Inc.||AMD||July 23|
|Materials Select Sector SPDR||XLB||July 20|
|Caterpillar, Inc.||CAT||July 20|
|Roku, Inc.||ROKU||July 16|
|Cognizant Technology Solutions, Inc.||CTSH||July 16|
|Consumer Discretionary Select Sector SPDR||XLY||July 13|
|SunPower Corp.||SPWR||July 13|
|Walmart, Inc.||WMT||July 8|
|Danaher Corp.||DHR||June 24|
|Fiverr International, Ltd.||FVRR||June 19|
|HubSpot, Inc.||HUBS||June 8|
|Square, Inc.||SQ||June 8|
|SPDR S&P Retail ETF||XRT||June 3|
|iShares MSCI Japan ETF||EWJ||May 29|
|Synopsis, Inc.||SNPS||May 27|
|Agilent Technologies, Inc.||A||May 15|
|Qualcomm, Inc.||QCOM||May 12|
|Five9, Inc.||FIVN||Apr. 24|
|Chewy, Inc.||CHWY||Apr. 24|
|Tesla, Inc.||TSLA||Apr. 23|
|VanEck Vectors Semiconductor ETF||SMH||Apr. 17|
|Okta, Inc.||OKTA||Apr. 16|
|Target Corp.||TGT||Apr. 16|
|Invesco QQQ Trust||QQQ||Apr. 14|
|Apple, Inc.||AAPL||Mar. 27|
|Nvidia Corp.||NVDA||Mar. 27|
|iShares MSCI Emerging Markets ETF||EEM||Mar. 19|
|Microsoft Corp.||MSFT||Feb. 22|
|* Click each symbol for current chart.|