It was another volatile week on Wall Street. The large-cap indexes, the Dow and the S&P 500, managed to end the week with decent 1.4% gains while the NASDAQ and the Russell 2000 just barely poked their noses into the plus column.
I'll provide my comments on both this week's alerts and alerts from weeks past.
Comments on past alerts --
The list from the week ending Feb 1, 2008 had a number of BUY signals for financial stocks. This was during the time when financials were enjoying a nice bounce. Since that time, many of them have been knocked back down.
As it has been earnings season, we have seen a number of stocks flash a BUY signal only to be crushed when earnings fail to meet investor expectations. This is always the risk when picking stocks during earnings season or, as some call it, "the silly season".
Lesson learned: be very careful about initiating positions in the time immediately prior to an earnings report.
On the plus side, we have an eclectic mix of stocks from prior alert lists that continue to show gains. To name a few of the top performing stocks (but not including any from last week's list):
- OceanFreight (OCNF) - up 17%
- American Biltrite (ABL) - up 17%
- Alpharma (ALO) - up 16%
- Veeco Instruments (VECO) - up 11%
- Portec Rail Products, Inc. (PRPX) - up 10%
Comments on this week's alerts --
The volatility of this week I believe reduced the opportunity for BUY or SELL signals to be generated. As I have often described, the TradeRadar software tries to identify significant changes in trend. With stocks bouncing all over the place, we ended up with fewer candidates this week.
We only have three SELL signals this week but they are all bond-related funds. There is a saying: "three data points makes a trend". Are we seeing the start of the bond bubble bursting? If so, remember you heard it here first.
As for the BUY signals, we see a number of stocks in energy-related industries. This week saw crude oil prices rise and I'm sure that helped some of these stocks as well.
The rest of the BUY list is a mix of large-cap and small-cap, with widespread industry representation. We have everything from a food company to a semiconductor company, a firm involved in the financial sector (but not a bank or brokerage) and a resort operator.
Since the number of signals is somewhat smaller than usual, only 15 BUY signals and 3 SELL signals, this week's price has been reduced to only $1.99
As always, good luck trading!