Markets ending the week Friday in bullish fashion, opening upon their lows, and going out on their highs. The Nasdaq continues to lead the way, and doubled the S&P 500’s weekly gain, with a 2.1% move. It is now up 5 of the last 6 weeks (10% in that time frame alone), and YTD is up an astounding 22.2%. The S&P 500 rose above the 1700 level for the first time Thursday in its best volume in a month, and retested that big round figure Friday and succeeded handsomely. YTD it is up a not to shabby 19.9%. The benchmarks overcame some weak data, with the GDP Wednesday, and jobs report Friday shrugged off. Throw in elevated prices at the pump, and the strength has to be admired. Seems as if stocks have a “monopoly” over all other asset classes currently, with the Fed as a firm backstop. Some solid rotation continues to give this rally fresh legs, and this week was brought to you courtesy of retail and software. Some retail names which had stellar weeks included KORS RL NKE SHOO. COH lagged. Software names, enjoying the wind behind the tech runs back, has been gaining nice momentum. Buoyed by recent merger activity , FIRE BMC, names like SYMC ATHN N MDAS are all pulling the sector higher. And this strength occurs even with the old industry leaders like MSFT ORCL lagging. Energy stocks are still lagging, but some names that threw themselves into the best of breed status in the group mix, with powerful moves this week were PXD CHK EGN GTLS CXO. Never settle for second best.

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