Bullish or Bearish? Week of March 6, 2023

Short-term trend (DAILY CHART)   RALLY: Last week, SPX repaired the damage, rising from 3970 to 4045, a healthy 75-point rally. Most important to technicians, SPX rose above resistance at 4,000, which is now support. As long as SPX can hold 4,000, investors will breathe easier, although the indexes are not out of the woods yet. In addition, SPX is once again above its three major moving averages. Note: Futures are FLAT on Monday morning.

Long-term trend (WEEKLY CHART) – STRUGGLING RALLY: SPX on the weekly chart has recovered somewhat, but not enough to give the "all-clear" signal. On the longer-term weekly, it will take a long time to repair the damage.

MACD (DAILY) = NEUTRAL. MACD is in the neutral zone both on the 9-day signal line and the 0 line. MACD needs to break out in one direction or the other --- at this time we are not getting a strong buy or sell signal.

RSI: (S&P 500) @52.32 (DAILY) NEUTRAL. Last week, RSI was at 41, which was a signal SPX was oversold. Sure enough, SPX rallied, and now RSI is back to the neutral zone. Bottom line: RSI is not giving a significant signal

Comment: The market was on the verge of collapsing at the beginning of last week when the bulls saved the day. As a result, the indexes remain in a trading range that has remained intact for many months.

In the short term, the market isn't moving much. However, in the long term, stocks may continue to be under pressure. The biggest concern are higher interest rates, which will negatively affect both the stock market and real estate.

True real estate story: One of my realtor friends in South Florida arranged a mortgage for his client, who had decent but not perfect credit. Although 7 percent is the advertised rate, this client was quoted 9 percent for a mortgage, but brought it to 8.5 percent by buying points. In real life, interest rates are higher than most people realize, which means real estate prices are due to fall over the next few months, and perhaps even longer.

If you are looking for safety in a rough market environment, consider T-bills, cash, and selling covered call options. All of these strategies have worked in the past. For those who want to buy individual stocks, consider stocks that pay dividends. These are my opinions, not advice, but you must do what makes the most sense for you.

Bottom line: Be patient and have a plan as the storm clouds move closer. Safety comes first during turbulent times.

Note: Fed Chair Jerome Powell will be speaking about the economy on Tuesday and Wednesday. In addition, the jobs report will be released on Friday. One or both of these events "may" move the markets.