Markets began the holiday shortened week with many believing with all the “big boys” back from the summer holidays would shed itself from its tepid ways. Not just yet. The Nasdaq put in a lukewarm performance and led the major averages with a gain of .5%, The S&P 500 rose .3%. The Nasdaq 100 rose by .6% buoyed by the likes of AMZN and FB putting in impressive showings. Bears must be really reaching for reasons to remain negative and perhaps they can speak to investors looking for the larger names today and with the largest 100 non financial names strong Tuesday investors will reach out to larger names historically near the end of a bull market). In contrast the IWM which mimics the Russell 2000 lagged up .1% today and was held down by the large weighting in the financial sector whose group was limp today with the XLF falling .2%. Sectors that led the way today were energy, utilities, tech and healthcare. The XLE gained 1.6% and is attempting to make the move below 70 look like a bear trap. “Looking left” on the chart one can see how important the 70 number was with just one weekly CLOSE above it at 70.41 ending 8/19/15. Prior to that the last week to finish above 70 was the week ending 7/17/17, 13 months between them. Below is the chart of one of the standouts in the industry from today, EOG and how it was presented in our Tuesday 8/16 Game plan. The defensive utilities rose more than 1% today and the XLU recaptured its own round number with the 50 figure closed above. The ETF retested the big bullish engulfing candle on 8/17 recently and has held. Would that be a warnings sign for stocks if very safe groups led. I personally believe it is broadening out of the ongoing rally, very healthy action indeed.

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