Sunday, May 31, 2009

Weekly Review - where's my trend? I need a friend...

Only four days of trading this past week but there was no lack of surprises.

Consumer Confidence, not normally a huge market mover, came in much better than expected and sparked a rally in spite of seriously disappointing housing data. Then we saw Treasury prices take a dive and stocks prices immediately followed suit. When it looked like the week was going to finish on a dismal note, stocks pulled off another "stick save" in the last half hour on Friday. Major averages finished the week with decent gains.

After a couple of weeks of falling prices, this week's gains are welcome but by no means does it say we are out of the woods. Looking at the TradeRadar statistics we see a market that isn't breaking out in any direction but is meandering along while still looking "toppy".

TradeRadar Alert HQ Stock Market Statistics --

Each week our Alert HQ process scans almost 7300 stocks and ETFs and records their technical characteristics. The following charts are based on daily data and presents the state of some of our technical indicators.

This first chart presents the moving average analysis for the entire market and contrasts it with the performance of the S&P 500 SPDR (SPY). When the number of stocks trading above their 50-day moving average (the yellow line) crosses the line that tracks the number of stocks whose 20-day moving average is above their 50-day moving average (the magenta line) there is an expectation that you will get a change in the trend of the S&P 500.


This chart over the last few weeks is beginning to look a lot like the tops we saw back in May 2008, September 2008 and February 2009. A big run-up followed by several weeks of up-and-down. The aforementioned tops, of course were followed big drops in stock prices. The question now is whether the economy will provide sufficient evidence of recovery to prevent another big drop this time around.

This next chart is based on Aroon Analysis and compares our trending statistics to the performance of SPY. We use Aroon to measure whether stocks are in strong up-trends or down-trends. The number of stocks in down-trends is indicated by the red line and the number of stocks in up-trends is indicated by the yellow line.


The slide in Aroon performance seems to have been arrested this week. We have a small increase in the number of stocks registering strong up-trends and a corresponding small decrease in the number of stocks in down-trends. Another indicator of uncertainty

It's been a while since I have posted an analysis of the S&P 500 but it seemed like a good time to take a look and see if there are any insights to gained. The following chart shows several technical indicators and looks at the percentage of stocks in each sector displaying positive results.


We have an interesting mix of results here. On the one hand, Utilities are doing poorly based on the expectation a weak economy will reduce the demand for power while Energy stocks are soaring based on the expectation the economy is recovering. Likewise, Materials are doing well while Industrials are beginning to show some weakness in their trending indicators. Similarly, if the expectation is that the economy is improving , why are Consumer Staples doing so much better than Consumer Discretionary?

Conclusion --

It is clear that stocks are indeed in a trading range, as many bloggers have recently noted. Our indicators confirm stocks are unwilling to fall and unable to rise. The markets will need a catalyst to break out in one direction or the other.

With few earnings reports on tap and the GM bankruptcy widely expected, investors will be looking to economic reports. This week has a good selection that should help markets make up their minds. We will see Personal Income, Personal Spending (certain to impact Consumer Discretionary stocks), Construction Spending, the ISM index, pending home sales, auto and truck sales, ADP employment, factory orders, ISM Services, initial claims, Productivity and Unit Labor Costs and the big Non Farm Payrolls and Unemployment reports.

This week we have five days to zig zag around while investors try to determine the next stage in the market's journey. I wouldn't be surprised to see another week go by without a breakout. In the meantime, the trend is neither up nor down. All you can do is have patience and attend to your stop-loss levels.



Big Mo mixes in a little value

This is a brief post to present one of our custom stock screens.

We look to our Trend Leaders and Bollinger Band Breakouts as sources of stocks and ETFs with superior momentum. We look to our Cash Flow Kings to find stocks exhibiting an element of value. Combine the two and our Big Mo screen now shows those stocks with both solid fundamentals and rising prices.

The table below lists seven stocks with strong momentum based on daily data. Note that our Trend Leaders consist of stocks in strong up-trends based on Aroon, MACD and DMI. Combined with the kind of surging prices that generate Bollinger Band Breakouts, these stocks are definitely exhibiting leadership. Given the high cash flow yield each has, these stocks would appear to be solid candidates for your watchlist.

SymbolNameLast PriceMarket Cap
ACFAMERICREDIT CORP.$12.71$1,688,000,000
ANFABERCROMBIE & FITCH CO.$30.11$2,641,000,000
GNKGENCO SHIPPING & TRADING LIMITED$26.15$829,200,000
NBGNATIONAL BANK OF GREECE$5.71$13,995,000,000
NOANORTH AMERICAN ENERGY PARTNERS, INC.$6.91$249,000,000
TDTORONTO DOMINION BANK$50.91$43,207,000,000
EXPEExpedia, Inc.$17.31$4,989,000,000

Disclosure: none



Durable Goods report - trends to watch in the Tech sector

Last Thursday the advanced Durable Goods report for April 2009 was released by the U.S. Census Bureau. I always look for clues in the report to see what is happening in the high tech industry. What does this month's report tell us?

Whither Semiconductors?

Initially, I was pretty encouraged by the surge in semiconductor shipments in April. Shipments were up 34.4% from March. Then I plotted the data for the last couple of years in the following chart.

Semiconductor Shipments, Durable Goods Report - April 2009
This chart certainly shows a significant rebound in shipments in the most recent month. Unfortunately, it doesn't yet confirm a change in trend. You could a line from the January 2008 data point to the April 2009 data point and it would pretty much result in a straight line downtrend.

A bottom in Computers?

April resulted in continued minor weakness in the Computers and Related Products category. This is the sub-sector that includes PCs, servers and various other similar hardware. The following chart shows the data for Shipments.

Computer Shipments, Durable Goods Report - April 2009
Here also we fail to see a significant change in trend though an optimist would say that a bottoming formation is in the process of developing. The declines in shipments have slowed down but, as the CEO of Dell recently said, there is no sign of an upswing in computer purchases yet. It would seem, though, that we have avoided making a new low so there is hope that better days are ahead.

What about Orders?

Let's widen our scope now to the Computers and Related Products category which encompasses pretty much all the technology industry hardware manufacturers.

The following chart shows Unfilled Orders. The Census Bureau defines this as a measure of unfilled orders at the beginning of the period plus net new orders less net shipments. It is often thought of as an indicator of future production.

Computers and electronic products, Unfilled Orders - Durable Goods Report, April 2009
Unfilled orders continue fairly flat reflecting a slump in both shipments and new orders. Nothing here stands out as a catalyst for bullishness or bearishness.

The following chart shows New Orders for the Computers and Related Products category. This is typically the number everyone focuses on.

Computers and electronic products, New Orders - Durable Goods Report, April 2009
It was good to see March was revised a bit higher. It was not so good to see April come in below March. With the overall trend still down, it is disappointing to again see that we have a failure to confirm a change in trend. The good news is that we are holding well above the low established in January.

Conclusion --

What can we say about the tech sector based on these charts? If you are a trend follower, you can't take much encouragement from these charts. All the trends are still down. It is known that the numbers in the Durable Goods report do bounce around from month to month so it would be foolish to ignore these trends.

If you are trying to predict where the tech sector goes from here, though, it is necessary to focus especially closely on the last few months. Here is where things get interesting. It appears that all of the charts above show that low points were hit three to six months ago. The data for Shipments and New Orders have since then have shown a struggle to establish a bottom. We now see a few months of what could be characterized as erratic performance but definitely no new lows.

It is safe to say the tech sector is on the mend. Tech stocks have performed strongly over the last few months in anticipation of a recovery. The data do not yet show a V-shaped recovery but they do seem to show some kind of recovery in its early stages.

If you believe in the predictive power of the markets, this is a good time to load up on tech. You'll note that IYW, the iShares Tech ETF, is approaching its recent high, it is solidly above its 200-day moving average and its 50-day MA has just crossed above its 200-day MA. All pretty bullish signs. Let's just hope stocks haven't gotten too far ahead of themselves.

Disclosure: long ROM, USD and IGN



Saturday, May 30, 2009

Weekend Winners and Losers - Alert HQ BUY and SELL signals for May 29, 2009

The latest list of free stock alerts is up and available at Alert HQ.

Each week we scan about 7300 stocks and ETFs, checking fundamentals, performing technical analysis and looking for fresh BUY and SELL signals. Out of this process we generate the following lists:

  • Alert HQ stock alerts - based on a combination of proprietary and standard technical analysis techniques, we identify stocks or ETFs that are undergoing reversals, either to the upside or to the downside
  • Trend Leaders - a collection of stocks in strong up-trends
  • Cash Flow Kings whose free cash flow yield is 25% or greater
  • Bollinger Band Breakouts - stocks or ETFs that have moved at least 3% above their upper Bollinger Band or at least 3% below their lower Bollinger Band
  • Swing Signals - stocks that have bounced off a higher or lower Bollinger Band
  • Trend Busters - stocks or ETFs that have violated a current trend.
This week's results --

After a couple of disappointing weeks, stocks got their mojo back and, with the help of a last minute rally on Friday afternoon, major averages managed to post decent gains. With stocks stuck in what looks like a trading range for the last month now, we are seeing fewer Alerts and fewer Trendbusters in the daily data. Interestingly, the weekly data remains quite robust across the board. This trading range is also causing us to get plenty of rotation on and off the TrendLeaders list so be sure to check who is on and who is off this week.

Here is the detailed breakdown for Alert HQ for this weekend:
  • based on daily data, we have 2 Alert HQ BUY signals and 12 SELL signals
  • based on weekly data, we have 74 Alert HQ BUY signals and 4 SELL signals
  • based on daily data, we have 568 Trend Leaders
  • based on daily data, we have 196 Bollinger Band Breakouts but we also have 451 Breakouts based on weekly data.
  • we have 872 Cash Flow Kings
  • based on daily data we have 62 Swing Signals of which 46 are BUY signals and 16 are SELL signals, no Strong BUY or Strong SELL signals today
  • finally, we have Trend Busters with 16 signals based on daily data and 60 based on weekly data
Visit Alert HQ and download your free lists of stock alerts. The alerts based on weekly data show those stocks that have exhibited some good follow-through after a recent trend reversal. If you want to be early in identifying the newest trend reversals, the lists based on daily data are for you. No matter which preference you have, there are bound to be a few stocks you will want to add to your watch list.

If you're a momentum trader, the TrendLeaders list is a good place to go shopping. If you have no faith in technical analysis, the Cash Flow Kings may be just what you are looking for. If you do favor technical analysis, check out the Trend Busters. And if you are a short-term trader or even a day trader, our Swing Signals may provide some good trading ideas. See them all at Alert HQ.

Remember, we also provide our latest updated Swing Signals, Trend Leaders and Trend Busters on Tuesday and Thursday nights.



Thursday, May 28, 2009

Thursday Trio: Trend Busters, Swing Signals and Trend Leaders for May 28, 2009

This is a quick post to announce that Thursday's Trend Leaders, Swing Signals and Trend Busters are now available at Alert HQ. All are based on daily data.

Today we have the following:

  • 32 Swing Signals -- 14 BUY signals and 18 SELL Signals
  • 515 Trend Leaders, all in strong up-trends according to Aroon, MACD and DMI
  • 12 Trend Busters of which 3 are BUY signals and 9 are SELL signals
To my disappointment, we have another Thursday with no Strong BUYs or Strong SELLs in our list of Swing Signals.

We have a rather abbreviated list of Trend Busters today which kind of indicates that we may be in a rather range bound market this week.

Remember, if you're a momentum trader, the Trend Leaders list is a good place to go shopping. If you practice technical analysis, check out the Trend Busters. And if you are a short-term trader, our Swing Signals may provide some good trading ideas.



Wednesday, May 27, 2009

SanDisk goes wild - was it justified?

SanDisk (SNDK) had a wild day today, gaining over 14% and helping the NASDAQ outperform the other major averages. Was it warranted?

The news that drove the stock today was related to SanDisk reaching an agreement with Samsung who manufactures NAND memory chips using technology covered by SanDisk patents. The previous seven year deal will expire in August of this year and investors were holding their breath waiting to see how the negotiations for a new deal would play out. Now we know.

The companies have entered into another seven year agreement. This is good for both companies in that Samsung is now sure that it will have uninterrupted access to SanDisk's patents and SanDisk, in turn, will have a consistent, reliable revenue stream from the royalties. So far so good.

Samsung, however, will in the future be paying roughly half what the current agreement stipulates. In other words, the $350M that SanDisk receives on an annual basis now will be reduced to about $175M. As a sweetener for SanDisk, Samsung has committed to guarantee providing a portion of its NAND output to SanDisk. This helps SanDisk who derives 60% of their revenue by selling flash memory cards in the retail market by ensuring a steady source of supply at predictable prices.

So it would seem that cutting royalties in half should not be the kind of news that drives a stock up. In this case, however, investors seem willing to overlook the decrease. With Samsung the largest source of royalties for SanDisk and producer of 30% of flash memory worldwide, it was imperative for SanDisk that the two companies come to some kind of agreement. With SanDisk pulling in over $3 billion in sales annually, the royalties are a significant portion of revenue but are far outweighed by sales of physical chips. Which brings me to my next point.

Investors seem to be willing to give SanDisk the benefit of the doubt because NAND flash memory prices have gone from a low of $1 per gigabyte back in January up to $2 per gigabyte. As supply and demand have come more into balance, this is the best kind of news for SanDisk's margins and, as pointed out above, chip sales do have greater impact on the company's bottom line than royalties.

Furthermore, SanDisk's CEO has been communicating optimism to the investing community.

He has indicated that the balance sheet is in much better shape lately, especially after receiving a cash infusion from Toshiba based on an agreement that turns over 30 percent of SanDisk's share of the current manufacturing capacity of the companies' joint ventures to Toshiba. In exchange, SanDisk is getting equipment-leasing cost reductions and cash amounting to about $1 billion.

CEO Eli Harari has also said that he was "cautiously optimistic" and that consumer demand has been stronger than expected. As the leading manufacturer of retail flash cards for phones and digital cameras, that is an outlook, if eventually justified by actual sales, that should indeed support the stock price.

Chart of SanDisk, 05-27-2009
So was today's action justified? Probably not. The pop in the stock price (you can see the big gap up on the chart above) is based more on optimistic expectations than on solid results. If the strength in the retail market for flash memory begins to flag, it will be no surprise to see SanDisk start to slide again. It's true that the stock was severely beaten down but it has already nearly doubled since the March low. The stock is now susceptible to the vagaries of consumer spending and, if the market in general declines, SanDisk will follow suit.

Disclosure: no positions



Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Tuesday Swing Signals, Trend Busters and Trend Leaders for May 26, 2009

This is a quick post to announce that Tuesday's Trend Leaders, Swing Signals and Trend Busters are now available at Alert HQ. All are based on daily data.

Today we have the following:

  • 111 Swing Signals -- 99 BUY signals and 10 SELL Signals plus two Strong BUYs.
  • 478 Trend Leaders, all in strong up-trends according to Aroon, MACD and DMI
  • 9 Trend Busters of which 1 is a BUY signal and 8 are SELL signals
Be sure to check out the Strong BUYs; when the market rises, these guys really outperform.

Using our signals --

If you're a momentum trader, the Trend Leaders list is a good place to go shopping. If you practice technical analysis, check out the Trend Busters. And if you are a short-term trader, our Swing Signals may provide some good trading ideas.



Monday, May 25, 2009

Weekly Review - support levels in play, enough to keep the rally alive?

When all was said and done, it was surprising to see that the major averages actually finished the week with small gains. It felt like a very negative, down week with many stocks falling four days in a row. What happened?

Housing starts were lower than predicted, initial claims remained stubbornly above 600,000 and FOMC meeting minutes from April showed the Fed's expectations for growth were even more downbeat than the previous month's. Affecting sentiment in the U.S., the S&P downgraded the outlook for U.K. sovereign debt from stable to negative. This prompted bloggers to begin debating when the same might befall the U.S.

Not everything was down. Commodities had a decent week as the dollar fell and crude oil prices jumped.

Against this backdrop of negative news, the statistics we collect at TradeRadar pretty much confirm a weakening of enthusiasm among bulls. The two charts below demonstrate the state of the overall stock market.

TradeRadar Alert HQ Stock Market Statistics --

Each week our Alert HQ process scans almost 7300 stocks and ETFs and records their technical characteristics. The following charts are based on daily data and presents the state of some of our technical indicators.

This first chart presents the moving average analysis for the entire market and contrasts it with the performance of the S&P 500 SPDR (SPY). When the number of stocks trading above their 50-day moving average (the yellow line) crosses the line that tracks the number of stocks whose 20-day moving average is above their 50-day moving average (the magenta line) there is an expectation that you will get a change in the trend of the S&P 500.


Last week we said our Moving Average chart was looking pretty "toppy". This week, the situation has further worsened. The number of stocks above their 50-DMA has decreased again and the line showing the number of stocks whose 20-DMA is above their 50-DMA has started to roll over. It could be a long way down from current levels which are still quite high.

This next chart is based on Aroon Analysis and compares our trending statistics to the performance of SPY. We use Aroon to measure whether stocks are in strong up-trends or down-trends. The number of stocks in down-trends is indicated by the red line and the number of stocks in up-trends is indicated by the yellow line.


The last two weeks have had a serious effect on our trending statistics. The number of stocks in strong up-trends has really plunged. Levels are not where they were during previous market low points but these trending statistics show that the strong rally of the last couple of months has abated for most stocks.

Conclusion --

Speaking of levels, many are watching the S&P 500 and looking to see whether the support level of $870 holds. Given the behavior of the market statistics we described above, it certainly seems that we will get a test of that level which, truth be told, is not very far away.

On the other hand, the NASDAQ 100, though off its best levels of the last few weeks, still remains slightly above it's 200-DMA and offers hope that stocks have not begun an irreversible slide.

With earnings season over, investors will be looking at world events such as the situation with North Korea and their missile and nuclear tests and the conflict in the oil producing region of Nigeria.

And, of course, there are the week's economic reports. It may be a shortened week coming up but there will be some significant ones. We will see the S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Index, Consumer Confidence, Existing Home Sales, the Durable Goods report, Initial Jobless Claims, New Home Sales, preliminary GDP (a surprise could really move the market), Chicago PMI and Michigan Consumer Sentiment.

So with sentiment flagging, no major earnings reports on the way and stocks in a weakening trend, we are going to need some of these upcoming economic reports to come in above expectations. Otherwise, be prepared for support levels to be challenged and likely broken. We could easily find ourselves back to where we were two months ago.



Saturday, May 23, 2009

Alert HQ for the week ending May 22, 2009 -- Trend Leaders, Trend Busters, Swing Signals, stock alerts and more

The latest list of free stock alerts is up and available at Alert HQ.

Each week we scan about 7300 stocks and ETFs looking for fresh BUY and SELL signals. To generate our stock alerts, we apply a combination of proprietary and standard technical analysis techniques to identify those stocks that are beginning to move. Our goal is to identify stocks or ETFs that are undergoing reversals, either to the upside or to the downside.

In addition to stock alerts, we have a lot more available at Alert HQ:

  • Trend Leaders - a collection of stocks in strong up-trends
  • Cash Flow Kings whose free cash flow yield is 25% or greater
  • Bollinger Band Breakouts - stocks or ETFs that have moved at least 3% above their upper Bollinger Band or at least 3% below their lower Bollinger Band
  • Swing Signals - stocks that have bounced off a higher or lower Bollinger Band
  • Trend Busters - stocks or ETFs that have violated a current trend.
Here is what we have this week --

Markets started strongly on Monday then weakened every day into Friday with major averages managing to finish the week with only fractional gains. Uncertainty seems to have returned to the stock market and stocks are moving more or less sideways. As a result, many of our lists are shorter than usual this week. Nevertheless, there's always a bull market somewhere and we have a good selection of stocks that are trying to break out on the upside.

Here is the detailed breakdown for Alert HQ for this weekend:
  • based on daily data, we have 1 Alert HQ BUY signal and 44 SELL signals
  • based on weekly data, we have 79 Alert HQ BUY signals and 9 SELL signals
  • based on daily data, we have 421 Trend Leaders, a huge decrease from well over a thousand last week
  • based on daily data, we have 101 Bollinger Band Breakouts but we also have 346 Breakouts based on weekly data.
  • we have 998 Cash Flow Kings
  • based on daily data we have 19 Swing Signals of which 8 are BUY signals and 10 are SELL signals and one is a Strong BUY
  • finally, we have Trend Busters with 104 signals based on daily data and 74 based on weekly data
Visit Alert HQ and download your free lists of stock alerts. The alerts based on weekly data show those stocks that have exhibited some good follow-through after a recent trend reversal. If you want to be early in identifying the newest trend reversals, the lists based on daily data are for you. No matter which preference you have, there are bound to be a few stocks you will want to add to your watch list.

If you're a momentum trader, the TrendLeaders list is a good place to go shopping. If you have no faith in technical analysis, the Cash Flow Kings may be just what you are looking for. If you do favor technical analysis, check out the Trend Busters. And if you are a short-term trader, our Swing Signals may provide some good trading ideas. See them all at Alert HQ.

Remember, we also provide our latest updated Swing Signals, Trend Leaders and Trend Busters on Tuesday and Thursday nights.



Thursday, May 21, 2009

Thursday Trio: Trend Busters, Swing Signals and Trend Leaders for May 21, 2009

This is a quick post to announce that Thursday's Trend Leaders, Swing Signals and Trend Busters are now available at Alert HQ. All are based on daily data.

Today we have the following:

  • 48 Swing Signals -- 12 BUY signals and 36 SELL Signals
  • 474 Trend Leaders, all in strong up-trends according to Aroon, MACD and DMI
  • 232 Trend Busters of which 21 are BUY signals and 211 are SELL signals
To my disappointment, we had no Strong BUYs or Strong SELLs in our list of Swing Signals.

More alarming, we see a bunch of ultra short ETFs on our list of Trend Busters and they are all busting out to the upside. Unless this move is nipped in the bud, it doesn't bode well for the market as a whole.

Remember, if you're a momentum trader, the Trend Leaders list is a good place to go shopping. If you practice technical analysis, check out the Trend Busters. And if you are a short-term trader, our Swing Signals may provide some good trading ideas.



Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Surprising number of stocks increase dividends

Earlier this week I wrote a post that listed all the Growth Leaders from the 1Q2009 earnings season. These were the stocks that were able to register growth in both EPS and Revenues sequentially and year-over-year.

Today's post is in a similar vein. This time we are looking at dividends.

Since most dividend announcements are delivered along with earnings reports and earnings season is drawing to a close, this seems like a good time to list all those stocks managed to increase dividends.

Despite the fact that stocks are struggling to rise from bear market lows, there were a good number of stocks that were in decent enough financial shape that they were able to raise their dividends. Here is the breakdown:

  • Of the universe of stocks that we evaluated, there were 829 that increased dividends. That is over 11%
  • Of these stocks, 140 were in the S&P 500. In other words, 28% of the stocks in the S&P 500 were able to raise their dividend payouts. Not bad for a recession and an index that is heavy with financial stocks that, for the most part, slashed dividends.
  • Investors, however, have not been especially kind to these stocks recently. Only 52 of them were on our Tuesday TradeRadar Trend Leaders list of stocks in strong up-trends.
If you would like to see the total list of stocks that qualified as Dividend Growers, you can download a spreadsheet by clicking here. The spreadsheet contains all the financial data we compile for the stocks we evaluate. There are three worksheets that correspond to the three bullet points listed above.

If you are looking for stocks with decent enough fundamentals to support a solid dividend then this list is for you. There are bound to be a few you can add to your watch list.



Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Tuesday Swing Signals, Trend Busters and Trend Leaders for May 19, 2009

This is a quick post to announce that Tuesday's Trend Leaders, Swing Signals and Trend Busters are now available at Alert HQ. All are based on daily data.

Today we have the following:

  • 72 Swing Signals -- 59 BUY signals and 11 SELL Signals plus one Strong BUY and one Strong SELL
  • 498 Trend Leaders, all in strong up-trends according to Aroon, MACD and DMI
  • 40 Trend Busters of which 2 are BUY signals and 38 are SELL signals
This past weekend we published our first Strong BUY Swing Signals. All three are so far doing pretty well. Be sure to check out today's Strong BUY and Strong SELL.

Using our signals --

If you're a momentum trader, the Trend Leaders list is a good place to go shopping. If you practice technical analysis, check out the Trend Busters. And if you are a short-term trader, our Swing Signals may provide some good trading ideas.



Monday, May 18, 2009

Earnings season is over - who were the Growth Leaders?

Earnings season is pretty much over now. Many companies managed to beat drastically reduced expectations. As a result, many bears focused on poor earnings quality and the fact that the bar had been lowered so far, it was no great accomplishment to exceed expectations.

There were a number of stocks, though, that beat fair and square. We compiled a list of stocks that had increased earnings per share sequentially and year-over-year and increased revenues sequentially and year-over-year. We had 218 stocks that made the list. We then cross referenced this list with the S&P 500 and came up with the following list of 27 stocks:

SymbolName
AETAETNA INC.
AFLAFLAC INC.
BMCBMC SOFTWARE, INC.
GILDGilead Sciences, Inc.
ORLYO'Reilly Automotive, Inc.
PCLPLUM CREEK TIMBER COMPANY, INC.
PGNPROGRESS ENERGY, INC.
PEGPUBLIC SERVICE ENTERPRISE GROUP INCORPORATED
DGXQUEST DIAGNOSTICS INC.
CRMSALESFORCE.COM, INC.
LHLABORATORY CORP. OF AMER.
VZVERIZON COMMUNICATIONS
WAGWALGREENS CO.
WPIWATSON PHARMACEUTICALS
CMCSAComcast Corporation
EPELPASO CORPORATION
EXCEXELON CORPORATION
FDOFAMILY DOLLAR STORES, INC
GMEGAMESTOP CORP (HOLDING COMPANY)
MFEMCAFEE, INC.
MHSMEDCO HEALTH SOLUTIONS, INC.
MILMILLIPORE CORPORATION
MONMONSANTO COMPANY
SWNSOUTHWESTERN ENERGY COMPANY
SRCLStericycle, Inc.
UNHUNITED HEALTH GROUP INCORPORATED
VARVARIAN MEDICAL SYSTEMS, INC.

So 27 stocks out of 500 amounts to barely over 5%. Out of the total universe of stocks that we evaluated the percentage is more like 3%.

Perhaps the bears have a point, in a general way, that earnings are weaker than the headlines would seem to indicate. Be that as it may, we are in a recession so it can be expected that earnings will be somewhat scrawny. So it seems that the companies that have demonstrated that they can continue to grow through tough economic times deserve special recognition.

If you would like to see the total list of stocks that qualified as Growth Leaders, you can download a spreadsheet by clicking here. The spreadsheet contains all the financial data we compile for the stocks we evaluate.

Disclosure: none



Sunday, May 17, 2009

Weekly Review - new trend but in the wrong direction?

Well, we finally had a week where all the major averages moved together - downward. This makes two in row for the NASDAQ 100 though it's only the first week of declines for the others. Is this the new trend?

Technicians and non-technicians alike have been expecting a pullback and it's looking more and more like that's what's beginning to unfold. Declines this week were no joke with the Russell 2000 down 7% and the S&P 500 down 5%. Looking at sectors, financials fell a whopping 12% and, after retail sales for April came in below expectations, consumer discretionary fell over 7%.

The statistics we collect at TradeRadar pretty much confirm the downbeat assessment presented above. The two charts below demonstrate the state of the overall stock market.

TradeRadar Alert HQ Stock Market Statistics --

Each week our Alert HQ process scans almost 7300 stocks and ETFs and records their technical characteristics. The following charts are based on daily data and presents the state of some of our technical indicators.

This first chart presents the moving average analysis for the entire market and contrasts it with the performance of the S&P 500 SPDR (SPY). When the number of stocks trading above their 50-day moving average (the yellow line) crosses the line that tracks the number of stocks whose 20-day moving average is above their 50-day moving average (the magenta line) there is an expectation that you will get a change in the trend of the S&P 500.

SPY versus the stock market - Moving Average Analysis, 05-15-2009
This chart is certainly looking awfully toppy. We're getting a crossover where the number of stocks above their 50-DMA has fallen below the number of stocks whose 20-DMA is over their 50-DMA. This shows stocks are falling quickly and the moving averages are not quite keeping up.

This next chart is based on Aroon Analysis and compares our trending statistics to the performance of SPY. We use Aroon to measure whether stocks are in strong up-trends or down-trends. The number of stocks in down-trends is indicated by the red line and the number of stocks in up-trends is indicated by the yellow line.

SPY versus the stock market - Trend Analysis, 05-15-2009
This chart confirms what we have been seeing on our Alert HQ Trend Leaders page: there are less and less stocks in solid up-trends according to Aroon analysis, MACD and DMI. So far, though, the deterioration in stocks has not pushed prices so low as to establish outright down-trends.

Conclusion --

With earnings season coming to a close and a light week of economic reports, there is probably a bit of a vacuum under stocks. As I write this, the Nikkei is down 2.86% and it's likely we will see weakness when stocks open in the U.S.

Oh well, pullbacks are healthy and nothing goes straight up. Let's hope we don't go straight down.



Updated Swing Signal approach yields three Strong BUYs

I wanted to call readers attention to a new feature that I added to the Alert HQ Swing Signals yesterday afternoon.

As you may know, the TradeRadar Swing Trading Signals are generated by identifying those stocks or ETFs that have exceeded their upper or lower Bollinger Band and then reverse back in within the Bollinger Band envelope. We also use Williams %R to help avoid whipsaw.

What we instituted yesterday afternoon was a simple trend detection method. For example, if our usual analysis generates a BUY signal, we now check to see if the 50-day exponential moving average is at least 1% higher than it was a week ago. If it is, we assume the trend is up-ward and we designate this signal a "Strong BUY"; otherwise, it will be listed as regular "BUY".

Similarly, in the case of SELL signals, we look for a down trend and if we have one we designate the signal a "Strong SELL".

Using this new approach, we expect to be able to separate Strong BUYs from the situation where we are getting a dead cat bounce that may possibly fail at the 20-DMA. For example, a stock can be doing well. Then it announces a bad earnings report and provides poor forward guidance. The stock gets killed, falls below its 50-DMA and the lower Bollinger Band sinks downward. If the stock is suffering a serious decline, the 50-DMA will begin to roll over. Then the stock begins a move back up from a multi-month low. We will still show it as a simple swing trading BUY but it should be interpreted as a more speculative BUY.

In the case of stocks in a downward channel that are beginning to turn up, we will continue to designate these stocks as simple BUYs also. They may move back up to the top of their channel, providing a good swing trading opportunity, but we would have less confidence in the extent of the move.

Our first three Strong BUYS --

This weekend no Strong SELLs were detected but we have three stocks that qualified as Strong BUYs. Here they are:

  • Arc Sight (ARST)
  • The Dress Barn, Inc. (DBTN)
  • Kirkland's Inc. (KIRK)
All are in up-trends, all are small-caps, all are free cash flow positive and all have little or no debt. Of the three, The Dress Barn and Kirkland's seem more attractive as they have modest PEs, trade at low Price to Sales ratios and have PEG and Price to Book ratios that are not excessive.

So keep an eye out for our Strong BUY and Strong SELL signals at the Alert HQ Swing Signals page. Just click the "Signal" table heading and they will pop to the top of the list.



Saturday, May 16, 2009

Alert HQ for the week ending May 15, 2009 -- Trend Leaders, Trend Busters, Swing Signals, stock alerts and more

The power outage in our neighborhood last night caused us some delay, but I can now announce that the latest list of free stock alerts is up and available at Alert HQ. Each week we scan about 7300 stocks and ETFs looking for fresh BUY and SELL signals. We apply a combination of proprietary and standard technical analysis techniques to identify those stocks that are beginning to move. Our goal is to identify stocks or ETFs that are undergoing reversals, either to the upside or to the downside.

In addition to alerts, we also have our lists of Trend Leaders, a collection of stocks in strong up-trends, Cash Flow Kings whose free cash flow yield is 25% or greater, Bollinger Band Breakouts, stocks or ETFs that have moved at least 3% above their upper Bollinger Band or at least 3% below their lower Bollinger Band, Swing Signals, stocks that have bounced off a higher or lower Bollinger Band and Trend Busters, stocks or ETFs that have violated a current trend. These lists are all available at Alert HQ.

For those of you who are interested in dividends, we have now added Dividend Yield to all our signals. Look for it on the far right in all our data tables. You can sort on it, too.

Here is what we have this week --

Tech stocks weakened and bank stocks surged. Despite the divergence, we were able to generate an even bigger list of Trend Leaders this week, showing that plenty of strength still lurks within this market. Plus, we have bigger lists of Swing Signals and Bollinger Band Breakouts.

Here is the detailed breakdown for Alert HQ for this weekend:

  • based on daily data, we have 2 Alert HQ BUY signals and 100 SELL signals
  • based on weekly data, we have 102 Alert HQ BUY signals and 10 SELL signals
  • based on daily data, we have 359 Trend Leaders, a huge decrease from well over a thousand last week
  • based on daily data, we have 79 Bollinger Band Breakouts but we also have 259 Breakouts based on weekly data.
  • we have 998 Cash Flow Kings
  • based on daily data we have 87 Swing Signals of which 47 are BUY signals and 40 are SELL signals
  • finally, we have Trend Busters with 227 signals based on daily data and 124 based on weekly data
Visit Alert HQ and download your free lists of stock alerts. The alerts based on weekly data show those stocks that have exhibited some good follow-through after a recent trend reversal. If you want to be early in identifying the newest trend reversals, the lists based on daily data are for you. No matter which preference you have, there are bound to be a few stocks you will want to add to your watch list.

Don't forget to view the free lists of Trend Leaders, Bollinger Band Breakouts, Cash Flow Kings, Trend Busters and Swing Signals, also at Alert HQ. If you're a momentum trader, the TrendLeaders list is a good place to go shopping. If you have no faith in technical analysis, the Cash Flow Kings may be just what you are looking for. If you do favor technical analysis, check out the Trend Busters. And if you are a short-term trader, our Swing Signals may provide some good trading ideas.

Remember, we also provide updated Swing Signals, Trend Leaders and Trend Busters on Tuesday and Thursday nights.



Friday, May 15, 2009

Industrial Production report - Tech sector on the mend?

Today the Fed released Industrial Production numbers for April. For the most part, the "less bad" theme remains intact.

The chart below presents month-over-month percent change for the three Technology sub-sectors.

Industrial Production - Tech Sector, Apr 2009
The Computers and peripheral equipment sub-sector continues to show contraction but it has been contracting less and less each month after hitting a low point back in November 2008.

Communications equipment has had a few weak months since January 2009 but here also contraction is now greatly reduced.

Semiconductors have carved a pretty erratic path since July of last year but now seem to be much more stable. Though there is still contraction here, too, it is much, much less than that seen last year. It is troubling that this past month saw production decrease a bit more than in the prior month but if the other sub-sectors continue to improve, this decrease could be easily erased.

Conclusion --

I have often said that technology will lead us out of this recession and today's report, while not showing growth right now, is at least pretty close to showing growth soon if current trends remain in place. Unfortunately, the growth will be from rather low levels but when growth comes, it will be welcomed, I hope, with a rally in tech stocks.

Given the seasonality of technology, growth might actually be seen during the summer months as consumer electronics manufacturers begin to order parts for the end of year selling season. If we see some evidence consumers haven't totally fled the marketplace, tech could see a nice summertime rally.



Thursday, May 14, 2009

Trend Leaders - spotlight on the latest additions

Having just posted the Thursday Alert HQ signals consisting of Trend Busters, Trend Leaders and Swing Signals, it occurred to me that it would be useful to see what stocks or ETFs were new to the Trend Leaders list.

One of the issues affecting analysis of the market lately is that so many stocks have been in steep up-trends. This means that the Trend Leaders list is pretty big each time we run it, often listing well over 1000 entries. The sheer volume sometimes makes it difficult to pick out the stocks of interest. That is why I have implemented functionality to allow you to sort the data. Still, I realize that may not be enough.

Spotlight on today's leaders --

Today the market was pretty strong, but just prior to today it had suffered a number of weak sessions. The result is that the Trend Leaders list has dwindled to less than 500. Over 700 stocks fell off the list since it was last run on Tuesday night though 382 stocks still remain.

Below I have listed those stocks and ETFs that are were not on Tuesday's Trend Leaders list but have now made a new appearance on today's list. There are 53 in all.


SymbolNamePrice
AZNASTRAZENECA PLC$39.02
BBXTBankAtlantic Bancorp, Inc.$4.90
BVNCOMPANIA DE MINAS BUENAV.$25.56
BWFWELLS FARGO CAPITAL XII 7.875% ENHANCED TRUST PREFERRED SECURITIES (ENHANCED TRUPS)$23.45
CBNJCape Bancorp, Inc.$7.96
CCFCHASE CORPORATION$12.82
CCJCAMECO CORPORATION$25.00
CFNBCalifornia First National Bancorp$12.75
CMECME Group Inc.$284.37
CUBCUBIC CORPORATION$33.22
CYTXCytori Therapeutics Inc$2.81
DPSDR PEPPER SNAPPLE GROUP, INC.$21.37
DUCKDuckwall-Alco Stores, Inc.$14.00
ESLESTERLINE TECHNOLOGIES$27.51
FCLFOUNDATION COAL HOLDINGS, INC.$28.14
FENENERGY INCOME AND GROWTH FUND$19.60
FFFDNorth Central Bancshares, Inc.$14.45
FOSLFossil, Inc.$21.58
GERNGeron Corporation$6.23
GGGOLDCORP, INC.$33.58
GISGENERAL MILLS, INC.$53.42
GLUTHE GABELLI UTILITY & INCOME TRUST$15.37
GSGISHARES S&P GSCI COMMODITY-INDEXED TRUST$27.79
HAEHAEMONETICS CORPORATION$53.97
HLSHEALTHSOUTH CORPORATION$11.03
IAACInternational Assets Holding Corporation$14.60
IPIINTREPID POTASH, INC$28.42
IXJISHARES S&P GLOBAL HEALTH CARE SECTOR INDEX FUND$42.28
MDMEDNAX, INC (HOLDING COMPANY)$41.30
MICCMillicom International Cellular S.A.$52.38
MJNMEAD JOHNSON NUTRITION COMPANY$28.84
MOOMARKET VECTORS AGRIBUSINESS ETF$34.23
MPVMASSMUTUAL PARTN INV$11.09
MXMMAXXAM INC.$10.95
NICKNicholas Financial, Inc.$4.80
NSITInsight Enterprises, Inc.$7.39
PCCCPC Connection, Inc.$5.67
PDAPERDIGAO S.A. ADS (REP 2 PFD SHARES)$34.88
PPHPHARM HOLDRS TR DEP REC$58.13
PTIPATNI COMPUTER SYSTEMS LIMITED (EACH REPRESENTING TWO EQUITY SHARES)$8.40
RHMRYDEX 2X S&P SELECT SECTOR HEALTH CARE ETF$45.12
SFOSTRATEGIC ACCELERATED REDEMPTION SECURITIES - S&P 500 INDEX 11/02/2010$10.00
SQMSOCIEDAD QUIMICA Y MINERA DE CHILE SA$34.44
SSRISilver Standard Resources, Inc$19.89
TAYCTaylor Capital Group, Inc.$6.20
TLVTTelvent GIT, S.A.$20.17
TPLTEXAS PACIFIC LAND TRUST$30.49
UCDPROSHARES ULTRA DJ-AIG COMMODITY$22.30
UCIE-TRACS UBS BLOOMBERG CMCI ETN$16.39
UGAUNITED STATES GASOLINE FUND, LP$28.99
USPHU.S. Physical Therapy, Inc.$13.11
UTLUNITIL CORPORATION$22.79
WYEWYETH$44.60

I will try to do this on a regular basis. It should help readers more easily identify those stocks that are just starting to out-perform without having to wade through a huge list.

Remember, on the Trend Leaders page, we have more data in a tabular format that you can sort on and we also offer a downloadable file that you can import into your favorite spreadsheet software.



Thursday Trend Busters, Swing Signals and Trend Leaders for May 14, 2009

This is a quick post to announce that Thursday's Trend Leaders, Swing Signals and Trend Busters are now available at Alert HQ. All are based on daily data.

Today we have the following:

  • 80 Swing Signals -- 43 BUY signals and 37 SELL Signals
  • 435 Trend Leaders, all in strong up-trends according to Aroon, MACD and DMI
  • 67 Trend Busters of which 3 are BUY signals and 64 are SELL signals
Today the market showed good gains but the previous few days were definitely weak. This is causing inconsistency in our numbers. We have a big jump in SELL signals in our Trend Busters list but our Swing Signals list, which is more short-term oriented, shows the BUY signals outnumbering the SELL signals. Looking a little more long term due to the moving average filtering involved, our list of Trend Leaders has decreased in size considerably since Tuesday.

Remember, if you're a momentum trader, the Trend Leaders list is a good place to go shopping. If you practice technical analysis, check out the Trend Busters. And if you are a short-term trader, our Swing Signals may provide some good trading ideas.



Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Leading and lagging indicators - where does Tech go from here?

So how do we view the most recent data from the tech sector? We two economic reports and comments from a CEO. They can be looked at as lagging and leading indicators respectively. How much weight do we give to each?

First, a lagging indicator --

From today's report of the ADVANCE MONTHLY SALES FOR RETAIL TRADE AND FOOD SERVICES, we see that retail electronics sales fell sequentially March to April 2.8%. The table below summarizes the weakness in sequential and year-over-year sales.


Apr 2009 adv. from --Mar 2009 prelim. from --
Kind of BusinessMar 2009 (p)Apr 2008 (r)Feb 2009 (r)Mar 2008 (r)
Electronics & appliance stores-2.8-12.0-7.8-8.8

We know the enterprise technology sector is more or less just limping along. Without the retail consumer buying gadgets and big screen TVs, the tech sector will find it difficult to mount a true recovery.

Now the leading indicator --

Yesterday, Intel's CEO Paul Otellini spoke at a conference at the company's headquarters. Otellini was quoted as saying "What we've seen so far is a little better than what we had expected," in referring to recent sales trends. Furthermore, he said recent economic assessments by research firm Gartner may have been too pessimistic. In March, Gartner predicted that shipments of PCs, the majority of which contain Intel's chips, would probably decline about 12 percent this year from 2008 levels.

Within the tech sector, semiconductor sales are usually looked at as a leading indicator for the rest of tech. If microprocessors are selling, than other PC and server parts should start to see demand. This would include memory chips, networking chips, disk drives, power supplies (that include analog ICs), monitors (typically flat screens these days), etc. Processor sales, in other words, give a bunch of tech sub-sectors a kickstart.

Conclusion --

So where does tech go from here? Sales for last month were disappointing though not as disappointing as they had been. An influential CEO sees things improving now though he warns that it is hard to say whether the improvement has staying power. Tech stocks have now declined for several days in a row with the NASDAQ down a full 3% today.

Today also saw the release of the MANUFACTURING AND TRADE INVENTORIES AND SALES report. The general thrust of the report is that, as of March, inventories had not yet declined to a level that would support strong growth in manufacturing. Yet Intel is now seeing a pickup in sales.

So is the Intel news company specific or can it be generalized across the tech sector? I think it helps some areas of tech but, in the end, investors will have to say "Show me" before accepting Intel's tentative results as a precursor to a tech resurgence.



Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Tuesday Swing Signals, Trend Busters and Trend Leaders for May 12, 2009

This is a quick post to announce that Tuesday's Trend Leaders, Swing Signals and Trend Busters are now available at Alert HQ. All are based on daily data.

Today we have the following:

  • 94 Swing Signals -- 13 BUY signals and 81 SELL Signals
  • 1161 Trend Leaders, all in strong up-trends according to Aroon, MACD and DMI
  • 63 Trend Busters of which 8 are BUY signals and 55 are SELL signals
Since I have a fascination with numbers, I am always trying to obtain some insights into the market from these results. Today it seems we have a preponderance of SELL signals yet our list of Trend Leaders remains large. A schizophrenic market? A pullback just getting started? We've certainly had some pretty tough days on the NASDAQ recently while the rest of the market has managed to hold up fairly decently. Are we seeing a rotation of leadership? Tech is slipping while commodities are gaining (have you noticed the breakout of the natural gas ETFs? we saw it starting days ago at Alert HQ). In the meantime, financials just see-saw up and down. A pullback seems the best bet but the question is, how shallow will it be? As long as we have a sizeable list of Trend Leaders and our Weekly Alerts continue to generate tons of BUY signals, I'm thinking the pullback will be shallow rather than deep. We shall see...

Using our signals --

If you're a momentum trader, the Trend Leaders list is a good place to go shopping. If you practice technical analysis, check out the Trend Busters. And if you are a short-term trader, our Swing Signals may provide some good trading ideas.



Saturday, May 9, 2009

Weekly Review - it's all about banks, jobs and Cisco

This week, the stock market focused on three major themes: banks, jobs and Cisco.

With respect to the banks, this week was all about the stress tests. Data has been leaking out about the test results for over a week now so when the official release came, there were no real surprises. As expected, 10 of 19 banks were identified as needing capital. Bank of America needed the most, $34B, as had already been leaked. Investors reacted with relief that the results weren't much worse and banks led the S&P 500 up strongly, with the index tacking on 5.9% this week. (For an interesting take on the impact of the stress tests on the chart of the S&P 500 and where we might go from here, check out this video from the folks at MarketClub)

As for jobs, we had both the ADP report and the government's Non-Farm Payrolls report. ADP came in much better than expected; ie, less people lost their jobs in April than lost their jobs in March and for the first time in a while, the number was under 600,000. The Non-Farm Payrolls report offered a headline number much like the ADP report. This was analyzed by numerous financial bloggers who pointed out the impacts of "seasonal adjustments", the always controversial birth-death model and the fact that the only entity doing any significant hiring is the U.S. Census Bureau (and those are only temporary jobs). In addition, unemployment rose from 8.5% to 8.9%. So the market rejoiced at a continuation of the "less bad" theme but these reports still paint a pretty bleak picture of the job market.

Finally, we have Cisco Systems (CSCO). The company reported earnings this week and they did manage to beat expectations. Investors, as usual, hung on every word of CEO John Chambers in the conference call. Mr. Chambers indicated that he is seeing some stability but he wouldn't go so far as to say that things were getting better. Investors reacted with disappointment as they interpreted his statement to mean that we may have reached a bottom in the tech sector but growth was not yet at hand. As a result, both Cisco and the NASDAQ lagged the rest of the market by far this week.

In terms of how we see things at TradeRadar, I want to present our usual two charts to demonstrate the state of the overall stock market.

TradeRadar Alert HQ Stock Market Statistics --

Each week our Alert HQ process scans almost 7300 stocks and ETFs and records their technical characteristics. The following charts are based on daily data and presents the state of some of our technical indicators.

This first chart presents the moving average analysis for the entire market and contrasts it with the performance of the S&P 500 SPDR (SPY). When the number of stocks trading above their 50-day moving average (the yellow line) crosses the line that tracks the number of stocks whose 20-day moving average is above their 50-day moving average (the magenta line) there is an expectation that you will get a change in the trend of the S&P 500.

SPY versus the market, Moving Average Analysis, 05-08-2009
The indicators here just keep on climbing. I am surprised that this chart can keep showing such strength week after week without any pullback to speak of. It is clear that investors considered stocks to have been deeply over-sold at the March low and the current widespread strength is an indication that stocks needed to rise to get back to a range of fair value. At some point, weak companies will again drop and these numbers will come back to earth. In the mean time, we have a very broad-based rally on our hands.

This next chart is based on Aroon Analysis and compares our trending statistics to the performance of SPY. We use Aroon to measure whether stocks are in strong up-trends or down-trends. The number of stocks in down-trends is indicated by the red line and the number of stocks in up-trends is indicated by the yellow line.

SPY versus the market, Trend Analysis, 05-08-2009This chart exhibits continuing solid performance. Roughly two thirds of all stocks are in up-trends according to Aroon analysis and only 8% are in down-trends. We've been in this range for the last month or so and it is an indication of the fact that while some stocks may be taking a breather, investors are turning to other stocks and bidding them up.

Conclusion --

Most economic developments this week, while not amazingly positive, were still supportive of the current rally. Investors now seem to be willing to wait for stronger earnings to materialize and for economic reports to show improvement rather than less contraction.

A note of doubt is creeping in, however, when looking at the tech sector. Tech led this rally early on but is now drooping. Semiconductors were down more than 4% this week. Tech shares in general were down over 2%. Contrast that with the fact that financials were up 18% over the same time frame.

So the worry is that there is now a divergence developing between tech and the rest of the market. Just as many said the market can't rise without the financials, so too it can be said that it will be difficult for the market to rise without tech.

As always, we will be looking to economic reports to help sort this all out and the list of reports this week will be especially revealing for retailers and manufacturers. We will see the Trade Balance, Retail Sales, Business Inventories and Crude Inventories, PPI, CPI, initial jobless claims, The Empire State Manufacturing Index, Capacity Utilization, Industrial Production and University of Michigan Consumer Sentiment Index.

So as the market continues to show surprising strength some investors are wondering if they are too late to join this rally or whether they should go all in. Others wonder whether it is now time to put on some shorts. I confess to a bullish outlook with an expectation for a mild pullback in the near term that will offer the opportunity to add to a few positions. Those drooping tech stocks seem worth a look at lower prices. Will they be the first to pull back and again the first to recover?



Alert HQ for the week ending May 8, 2009 -- Trend Leaders, Trend Busters, Swing Signals, stock alerts and more

This post is to announce that the latest list of free stock alerts is up and available at Alert HQ. Each week we scan about 7300 stocks and ETFs looking for fresh BUY and SELL signals. We apply a combination of proprietary and standard technical analysis techniques to identify those stocks that are beginning to move. Our goal is to identify stocks or ETFs that are undergoing reversals, either to the upside or to the downside.

In addition to alerts, we also have our lists of Trend Leaders, a collection of stocks in strong up-trends, Cash Flow Kings whose free cash flow yield is 25% or greater, Bollinger Band Breakouts, stocks or ETFs that have moved at least 3% above their upper Bollinger Band or at least 3% below their lower Bollinger Band, Swing Signals, stocks that have bounced off a higher or lower Bollinger Band and Trend Busters, stocks or ETFs that have violated a current trend. These lists are all available at Alert HQ.

Here is what we have this week --

Tech stocks weakened and bank stocks surged. Despite the divergence, we were able to generate an even bigger list of Trend Leaders this week, showing that plenty of strength still lurks within this market. Plus, we have bigger lists of Swing Signals and Bollinger Band Breakouts.

Here is the detailed breakdown for Alert HQ for this weekend:

  • based on daily data, we have 6 Alert HQ BUY signals and 28 SELL signals
  • based on weekly data, we have 225 Alert HQ BUY signals and 5 SELL signals
  • based on daily data, we have 1372 Trend Leaders, a nice increase from last week
  • based on daily data, we have 593 Bollinger Band Breakouts but we also have 867 Breakouts based on weekly data.
  • we have 973 Cash Flow Kings
  • based on daily data we have 56 Swing Signals of which 27 are BUY signals and 29 are SELL signals
  • finally, we have Trend Busters with 33 signals based on daily data and 689 based on weekly data
Visit Alert HQ and download your free lists of stock alerts. The alerts based on weekly data show those stocks that have exhibited some good follow-through after a recent trend reversal. If you want to be early in identifying the newest trend reversals, the lists based on daily data are for you. No matter which preference you have, there are bound to be a few stocks you will want to add to your watch list.

Don't forget to view the free lists of Trend Leaders, Bollinger Band Breakouts, Cash Flow Kings, Trend Busters and Swing Signals, also at Alert HQ. If you're a momentum trader, the TrendLeaders list is a good place to go shopping. If you have no faith in technical analysis, the Cash Flow Kings may be just what you are looking for. If you do favor technical analysis, check out the Trend Busters. And if you are a short-term trader, our Swing Signals may provide some good trading ideas.

Remember, we also provide updated Swing Signals, Trend Leaders and Trend Busters on Tuesday and Thursday nights.



Thursday, May 7, 2009

Thursday Trend Busters, Swing Signals and Trend Leaders for May 7, 2009

This is a quick post to announce that Thursday's Trend Leaders, Swing Signals and Trend Busters are now available at Alert HQ. All are based on daily data.

Today we have the following:

  • 87 Swing Signals -- 20 BUY signals and 67 SELL Signals
  • 1265 Trend Leaders, all in strong up-trends according to Aroon, MACD and DMI
  • 40 Trend Busters of which 5 are BUY signals and 35 are SELL signals
Today's market sell-off is definitely reflected in our numbers today. We have a big jump in SELL signals in both our Trend Busters list and our Swing Signals list. On the other hand, our list of Trend Leaders has actually increased in size slightly since Tuesday showing that this market hasn't quite rolled over yet.

Remember, if you're a momentum trader, the Trend Leaders list is a good place to go shopping. If you practice technical analysis, check out the Trend Busters. And if you are a short-term trader, our Swing Signals may provide some good trading ideas.



Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Jacobs Engineering - charts and fundamentals aligned for more gains?

In looking through the list of Swing Signals we generatedTuesday night, there was one stock that looked especially interesting.

The stock is Jacobs Engineering (JEC). By way of background, the company provides technical, professional, and construction services to industrial, commercial, and governmental customers worldwide.

Looking at the technical setup, it seems to be poised for further gains. Today, as a matter of fact, it gained 2.5%.

Generating a BUY signal on the list of Swing Signals means that JEC bounced off its lower Bollinger Band and that Williams %R is greater than -80. What makes this more interesting than some of the other stocks on the Swing Signals list is that it appears JEC has now retested its 50-day moving average.

After spending April vacillating around the 50-DMA, the stock finally took off from the high $30's into the high $40's. It has now fallen slightly below the 50-DMA and promptly rebounded above it. This implies that the 50-DMA is providing support. A further positive is that the 50-DMA is trending upward in a bullish direction.

All this is visible in the following chart.


In addition to all the technical mumbo-jumbo, there are several fundamental factors that bear discussion.

Earnings up, guidance down --

For the second quarter ended March 31 2009, the company earned $109.3 million, or 88 cents per share, compared with $99.3 million , or 80 cents a share. Revenues rose about 12 percent to $2.98 billion from $2.66 billion. So far so good. What drove the price down to its lower Bollinger Band, however, is that the company cut its 2009 earnings forecast, even as its backlog for orders grew 2.5 percent. Jacobs reduced its earnings estimate to a range of $3.10 to $3.50 a share, from a prior forecast of $3.55 to $3.90 a share.

What could easily be a catalyst to boost the stock price back up to its upper Bollinger Band is that investors may be realizing that there has been an over-reaction. Jacobs Engineering is an excellent play on the resurgence of infrastructure projects. There are several factors here:

  • One is that the U.S. government has targeted infrastructure as part of the stimulus package and projects should begin to ramp up soon. Jacobs is bound to participate in this initiative.
  • Secondly, the stock market is moving lately as if the recession has found a bottom and it's all up from here. If that is true, the global economy should begin to recover and the kinds of technical and infrastructure projects that Jacobs specializes in should begin to swell the company's order pipeline again. Equally important to the stock price, the perception that the economy is recovering, whether it is or not, could be enough to see the price of JEC react sufficiently to provide a swing trading opportunity.
  • A near term catalyst was the announcement yesterday of three contracts: one with the Department of Energy worth $3B over 10 years, another with Suncor that shows there is still life in the energy sector despite oil prices being well off their peak levels and the third with two U.K. government transportation departments to participate in a $24B railroad project.
With a PE of 12 and a PEG of 0.8 the stock cannot be considered especially expensive but it isn't terribly cheap either. The company is also a well known generator of cash with a Levered Free Cash Flow 5-Year CAGR of 34.7%. With recent quarterly revenue growth of 30% and earning growth of 18% while most companies are registering double digit declines, though, shows why the company is considered a top player in its industry.

So with good fundamentals in place, an opportunity to ride a global economic resurgence and an interesting technical chart set-up, Jacobs Engineering is looking like a good trade. If you need more confidence in the stock's potential for gains, wait for it to cross above its 20-day moving average. We're almost there as of the close today.



Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Tuesday Swing Signals, Trend Busters and Trend Leaders for May 5, 2009

This is a quick post to announce that Tuesday's Trend Leaders, Swing Signals and Trend Busters are now available at Alert HQ. All are based on daily data.

Today we have the following:

  • 33 Swing Signals -- 18 BUY signals and 15 SELL Signals
  • 1238 Trend Leaders, all in strong up-trends according to Aroon, MACD and DMI
  • 25 Trend Busters of which 6 are BUY signals and 19 are SELL signals
If you're a momentum trader, the Trend Leaders list is a good place to go shopping. If you practice technical analysis, check out the Trend Busters. And if you are a short-term trader, our Swing Signals may provide some good trading ideas.



Monday, May 4, 2009

What is the Mo-Mo screen? 38 stocks you might want to know

We are now more or less two thirds of the way through earnings season. This seems like a good time to revisit a screen we first ran about a month ago.

Using the data we generate as we scan over 7200 stocks and ETFs at Alert HQ, we assembled a screen that is composed of stocks with the following characteristics:

  • The stock must have shown sequential quarterly growth as well as year-over-year growth in both EPS and Revenue
  • The stock must have appeared on the TradeRadar Trend Leaders list this past weekend. This means that, besides being above their 50-DMA, they have also been determined to be in strong up-trends according to Aroon analysis, DMI and MACD.
Consider this the Mo-Mo Screen: a combination of price momentum and earnings/revenue momentum. Below is this month's list (note that prices are as of last Friday, 05-01-09).

Symbol Name Last Price Market Cap PE
AGL AGL RESOURCES INC. $31.41 $2,415,000,000 11
ARB ARBITRON INC. $20.88 $551,900,000 16.79
ATK ALLIANT TECHSYSTEMS INC. $82.17 $2,689,000,000 11.07
ATO ATMOS ENERGY CORPORATION $25.64 $2,349,000,000 12.28
CRM SALESFORCE.COM, INC. $41.41 $5,087,000,000 123.37
CSR CHINA SECURITY & SURVEILLANCE TECHNOLOGY, INC. $7.32 $365,900,000 9.42
CVS CVS CAREMARK CORPORATION $32.26 $46,955,000,000 14.55
DLB DOLBY LABORATORIES, INC.-CLASS A $38.59 $4,351,000,000 20.04
GD GENERAL DYNAMICS $52.38 $20,222,000,000 8.38
GES GUESS?, INC. $26.04 $2,395,000,000 11.41
HOS HORNBECK OFFSHORE SERVICES, INC. $23.95 $625,400,000 5.36
IRC INLAND REAL ESTATE CORPORATION $8.27 $551,500,000 17.46
MVL MARVEL ENTERTAINMENT, INC. $30.22 $2,361,000,000 11.42
NPK NATIONAL PRESTO INDUST. $73.98 $506,600,000 11.04
NTG NATCO GROUP INC. $25.39 $506,000,000 13.7
ORB ORBITAL SCIENCES CORPORATION $15.54 $888,300,000 15.17
PCR PERINI CORPORATION $17.28 $838,400,000 N/A
RYN RAYONIER INC. $37.96 $2,997,000,000 20.18
SVT SERVOTRONICS, INC. $10.16 $19,600,000 7.18
TIS ORCHIDS PAPER PRODUCTS, INC. $18.03 $116,200,000 21.54
V VISA INC. $65.01 $50,578,000,000 56
VIT VANCEINFO TECHNOLOGIES INC $7.90 $295,000,000 20
WMS WMS INDS, INC. $31.12 $1,535,000,000 23.47
ATHN athenahealth, Inc. $33.78 $1,129,000,000 38.31
BUCY Bucyrus International, Inc. $23.36 $1,749,000,000 7
CERN Cerner Corporation $52.68 $4,232,000,000 23.79
CTCM CTC Media, Inc. $8.20 $1,248,000,000 55.21
DGIT DG FastChannel, Inc. $21.99 $459,100,000 29.49
DNEX Dionex Corporation $61.58 $1,092,000,000 20.71
FSLR First Solar, Inc. $180.89 $14,768,000,000 44.15
FORR Forrester Research, Inc. $24.56 $566,000,000 20.51
FUQI Fuqi International, Inc. $6.68 $147,000,000 4.76
NRGP Inergy Holdings, L.P. $36.51 $739,100,000 18.6
JJSF J & J Snack Foods Corp. $38.93 $714,100,000 24.19
MDTH MedCath Corporation $10.50 $206,000,000 9.85
QSII Quality Systems, Inc. $54.41 $1,544,000,000 32.84
SYNT Syntel, Inc. $28.44 $1,180,000,000 13.22
VPRT VistaPrint Limited $37.26 $1,570,000,000 32.19

As I mentioned above, we first ran this screen about a month ago and wrote about it in a post titled "Forty stocks that have defied the downturn". It is interesting to see that there are not too many stocks making a repeat appearance. Here are the few that managed to pull it off though I am not sure they have all reported earnings yet:
  • HORNBECK OFFSHORE SERVICES, INC. (HOS)
  • Forrester Research, Inc. (FORR)
  • Fuqi International, Inc. (FUQI)
  • Inergy Holdings, L.P. (NRGP)
  • NATIONAL PRESTO INDUST. (NPK)
  • Quality Systems, Inc. (QSII)
  • VistaPrint Limited (VPRT)
  • WMS INDS, INC. (WMS)
Conclusion --

Of the forty stocks in last month's list, the great majority have tacked on further price gains since the list was published. Granted, the stock market overall has been rising during this time but some of those stocks have really made some nice moves, exceeding the market return over the last four weeks.

In any case, it is worth keeping an eye on the stocks in the Mo-Mo screen. Especially if the market keeps on rising - these are the stocks that could benefit most.

Disclosure: none




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Disclaimer: This site may include market analysis. All ideas, opinions, and/or forecasts, expressed or implied herein, are for informational purposes only and should not be construed as a recommendation to invest, trade, and/or speculate in the markets. Any investments, trades, and/or speculations made in light of the ideas, opinions, and/or forecasts, expressed or implied herein, are committed at your own risk, financial or otherwise.




 
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