The uptrend in the major indicies over the past six or seven months has clearly been broken. Here is a chart of the S&P 500 with my retrospective scribble on the chart, indicating the prevailing trend:
Note that volatility has increased considerably:
VIX is not predictive; however, it does say that market participants have been spooked to pricing in more volatility in the future. The question is whether they are spooked enough – my gut instinct says we may get a sucker rally here or there, but it is more likely than not that the prevailing trend will either be choppy or down – not exactly the type of environment for a buy and hold investor.
Playing conservatively is likely the better option at this point, just as it has been for the past few months.
The uptrend in the market indexes over the past 7 months has been noted by many, but due to geopolitical instability and the rising price of crude, the uptrend has taken a break. I note before when this also happened:
I do not know whether this is the “top” or whether this is a head-fake on the way to an S&P 500 at 1400. Time will tell.
Although one day does not make for the market’s direction, crude equities fell significantly today. The long commodity trade is very crowded and whenever this condition occurs, the risk of being long becomes progressively higher – momentum can only take you so far. Prudent investors will take money off the table and be patient, and let the greedy ones get burnt.
I wish I had something more to write other than that I have been continuing to take money off the table, and also putting capital into one other obscure US-based equity position that is not listed on any index, and appears to be relatively under-valued at the moment.