Markets surged Friday, and for the Nasdaq it flew past the round 7300 handle that held it back four consecutive sessions. From the 2/9 intraday lows the tech rich benchmark has risen more than 700 points and now is within just 2% off most recent all time highs. Compare that with the S&P 500 and Dow lower by 4 and 5% respectively from their recent highs. Looking at YTD gains and one can easily see how the bulls are feeling charged up heading into the weekend with the Nasdaq clearly outdoing its peers higher by 6.3%. The S&P 500, Dow and Russell 2000 are ahead by 2.8, 2.4 and 1% in 2018 thus far. The Russell 2000 is the only one of the aforementioned indexes that is not above its 50 day SMA. Do not count out international plays as the emerging markets are looking good too. Take the EEM which sprinted higher by 6.7% the week ending 2/16 and added another .4% this week. Its chart now shows a bull flag pattern with the trigger aligning with the very round 50 number. A move above there would carry a measured move to 55.
Looking at individual sectors the utilities and energy with the best performers with technology rounding out the top three. The rally today was broad based as all of the major S&P sectors advanced. Peeking at the more important longer time frames on a weekly basis it was technology that lead the way with the XLK gaining 1.7% on top of last weeks stunning 5.7% jump. It is now within just 1% its recent 52 week highs, an impressive rebound. After all of the major S&P sectors gained ground last week between 2.2-5.7%, this week 7 of the 9 advanced and it was just the healthcare and staples that failed to finish in the green. The XLV fell fractionally by .1% and the XLP was a glaring laggard falling by 2.2%. The utilities, which I have not been a fan of seem to be acting much better as the ETF posted its second consecutive weekly CLOSE above the very round 50 number and this week recorded a bullish hammer too.
One would have to have been hibernating under a rock for a long time not to be aware of the strength in some of the “old tech” names. There is something to be said about experience and many of theses names have comeback with a vengeance. CSCO and MSFT come to mind off by 2 and 3% respectively from their most recent 52 week highs. Some names just recently came back, coming out of their doldrums and looking to join the party. Below is a good example of a latecomer BlackBerry. A former hardware play has turned into a software play to be reckoned with. Here is the chart and how it appeared in our Friday 2/23 Game Plan. Today it roared back above its 50 day SMA gaining more than 5% on the best daily volume in 5 weeks and is now currently 14% off most recent 52 week highs for those that think they have missed the boat. It is still just above its 50 day SMA and can be entered here and the next add on spot would be through a cup base trigger of 14.65.