Wednesday, February 18, 2009

If You Are In The Market, This Is Where The Dues Are Paid

After an ugly beating on Tuesday, the indices managed to hold up fairly well today, but buyers are obviously still lacking in confidence. There wasn't much energy at all to the slight gains in the senior indices, and under the surface breadth was quite poor once again with about 2,000 advancers to 3,800 decliners. Volume was a lighter, and leadership was in gold once again, which isn't a great leadership group. Overall, today was not exactly a resounding rebound.

The most troubling thing about this market recently is that all we seem to be doing is anticipating and reacting to news of the next governmental move. Charts and fundamentals have been largely irrelevant. Traders are just constantly trying to position in front of the next rumor or announcement, and then they quickly flip if they are lucky enough to catch the move. Very few folks are willing to ride positions for long.

I'm sure there are some traders who enjoy this sort of environment. Personally, I prefer to be able to hold positions for longer than a day or two, and other than a few gold plays, that has been nearly impossible.

When I'm feeling handcuffed by the market action, I like to remind myself that the reason we stick with the market through the difficult times is that it can be so lucrative when things change, and they always do eventually change. If it were easy it would not be so potentially rewarding.

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