Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Greece, Again

Once again, all that matters to the market is what is going on in Europe and, unfortunately, what is going on in Europe isn't very good.

It is absurd that the Greeks are hesitating to accept the bailout that the European Union felt it had to pass in order to save them. Europe just went through this painful process of crafting a deal and now Greece is saying, "We'd like to think about it for a while and probably vote on it in January."

Drawing on what I know about a significant portion of the Greek people, they yearn to experience danger; many don't feel "alive" unless they're walking on the edge...

The market obviously didn't see this coming, and now all the folks who were scrambling to add long exposure last week on the Greece-is-saved news are scrambling to get rid of positions as the house of cards comes crashing down.

Dancing around to the European headlines is really wearing on many market players as it makes it nearly impossible to focus on charts, fundamentals or individual stock picking. We just react to the latest news. What makes it worse is that we seem to be blindsided by news no one saw coming.

If we could move past this obsession with Europe, the overall technical picture isn't bad, say the technicians. We have "corrected the overbought" technical conditions and are sitting on decent support at the high end of the recent trading range.

Many folks who missed the October move would love to jump on these pullbacks, but the European mess is keeping them on the sidelines. As soon as we have a little clarity I expect to see buyers become aggressive quickly. The problem is that we end up with these big gaps, one way or the other, every morning depending on what happened in Europe overnight.