Markets finished up near the UNCH line Thursday, with the Nasdaq trading the most volatile. Around lunchtime the index had been up .8% but closed up .3%. Those are bearish characteristics, and not surprisingly come from the benchmark which is still in the red YTD, down 1.2%. The S&P 500 lost ground for the first time this week, by the very slimmest of margins, and both it and the Nasdaq are on pace to record decent weeks, up 1.1% going into Friday. Thursdays leading groups were not exactly what you wanted to see participate, with consumer discretionary and utilities. The XLU is looking for a 6t consecutive weekly gain heading into Friday up .6% for the week. The ETF is now well above the 41.04 cup with handle trigger it took out on 3/17, in a long base that began one year ago this week. Notice how the round 40 handle was almost precisely hit before the strong uptrend resumed. The lagging groups today happened to be recent strong sectors like materials and energy. The XLB is sporting a 48.05 double bottom trigger currently, but volume trends have been far from energetic as of late. The XLE looks much stronger, and a few days of sideways action is just what one can hope for if long. The ETF is up 10 of the last 12 weeks, and flat headed into Friday. The technical action being displayed is excellent as it strives for a third consecutive weekly gain, with each week closing very close to the prior one, indicating excellent stamina following the big move for the fund.

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