Stand By For A Test

After a long 3-day weekend, market participants came to “work” in a bad mood as all three of the major indices sold off hard. The broader market ($SPX) fell -4.6% making it the worst performer on the day. However, the others weren’t far behind with the Dow at -3.8% and the Nasdaq at -4.1% for the day. The S&P closed at a new low for 2009 as it finished the day under $790. We are about 40 points away from the November lows and we nearly moved 40 points today.


The key technical level will be a breach of the $750 price level as that would cave way for another 100 -150 point drop. We are talking levels down around $640/$600 and it’s been some time since we’ve seen those levels. If we get down there, these levels signify another test of the 2002/2003 support for the post dotbomb bull market run. Like a fist punching a pane of glass, one must wonder how many times can the S&P “punch” at that level before it gives way.

The question that needs to be answered is where the buyers step in, if at all. Surely the larger institutions and those of the “buy and hold” mindset will begin to tout the oversold mantra; again, just like they did back in November. Not all was lost today though with Wal-Mart ($WMT) knocking one out with better than expected numbers.


Tomorrow we get inundated with data including building permits, housing starts, import prices, capacity utilization, industrial production, the FOMC meeting minutes and some Fed speak from Bernanke and Evans. On the earnings front, $ADI, $CBS, $CMCSA, $CEG, $DE, $GT, $HST, and $WFMI are reporting tomorrow.