A Lack of Conviction
By Paul Cherney
This is still the case: There should be sufficient support under current levels to stop a decline, but there has not been convincing evidence that buyers are ready to take control of the markets.
One thing the current selling has not generated is a panicked plunge at the open of trading. There has been no fear-driven "get me out at any price" jam for the exits. The markets don't need to have such an event occur to signal a reversal, but many traders like to see it. We have not had a real gap opening plunge lower which would represent a short-term capitulation of fence-sitting sellers.
We are still in the earnings reporting season and the fears of a dip in October might keep buyers on the sidelines. If prices don't experience a sharp gap-opening drop, prices might have to move sideways establishing a base for a few days.
Immediate intraday resistance for the S&P 500 is a shelf established in Tuesday's session at 998.77-1,002.92; the next resistance is 1,008-1,015.97, with a focus at 1,011-1,014.71. Resistance is stacked; the next layer is 1,014-1,026, with a focus at 1,018-1,023. Once resistance levels are exceeded, even just thin shelves, they must be considered support until they break.
Immediate intraday resistance for the Nasdaq is 1,799-1,822, with a focus of resistance at 1,812-1,822. The next resistance is 1,827-1,856.12. Resistance becomes thick starting with prints of 1835 and higher; there is a focus of resistance at 1,845-1,856.12. The next big layer of resistance is 1,867-1913.
Immediate support for the Nasdaq is 1,791-1,770, Support is stacked at 1,765-1,737, with a focus at 1,757-1,752, and if there were to be a panicked drop this area looks like a likely spot for prices to stop their descent.
Immediate support (daily charts) for the S&P 500 is 1,008-983. Support in this area can be further refined into two levels, 998-988 and 991-983, so there is a focus of support at 991-988.
Cherney is chief market analyst for Standard & Poor's