The bears were looking to weakness in financials to bring a swift end to a big bounce that kicked in Tuesday afternoon, but reversals in AAPL and GOOG, strength in technology and commodities, and even YHOO takeover talk (which is now being called into question after the close) more than offset the struggling banks.
The biggest positive that the bulls have going for them is that the bears are worried they will be squeezed by more news about bailouts or rescues in Europe. We have spiked up so often on various rumors, plans and ideas that you just can't be too comfortable on the short side, although the situation still looks far from a resolution.
While the potential for positive news is keeping the bears at bay, it hasn't been all that easy for the bulls, either. Individual stock picking is not producing much relative performance as stocks continue to move as a group on macroeconomic matters. It is primarily a market for timing bounces and pullbacks, rather than astute selection of quality names.