Downside Risk Remains Limited

Momentum measures suggest that any short-term price weakness should attract buyers

By Paul Cherney

There still could be a little downside risk for the markets, but end-of-day momentum measures suggest that any short-term price weakness should attract buyers, not sellers, so downside risk should be limited.

I expect the S&P 500 support at 1,170-1,160 to hold on a closing basis, but if the index undercuts 1,160, that would increase downside risk for prints at the next layer of support: 1,147-1,127. The 1,147-1,127 area has a focus of support at 1,144-1,138.50.

Immediate intraday resistance is 1,178-1,188.46 for the S&P 500 and 2,089-2,112.18 for the Nasdaq. If either of these resistance levels is exceeded, another leg higher will be in place.

Nasdaq charts based on daily price bars show support at 2,068-2,025, with thick support at 2,068-2,056; another layer of support is 2,049.77-2,032. Next intraday support is 2,020.67-2,002.

S&P 500 support is 1,177-1,160, with thick support at 1,170-1,160. The next layer of organized intraday support is 1,147-1,138.50.

We are in what has been historically, on average, the three best performing months of the year -- November through January. Downside risk should be limited.

Cherney is chief market analyst for Standard & Poor's

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