It took some coaxing, but when push came to shove later on the day on Thursday, it was the bulls doing most of the shoving. The S&P 500 ended the day at 2827.22, up 0.49%, led by Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) and Advanced Micro Devices (NASDAQ:AMD). The technology trade is back “on,” and those two names have been the most reliable leaders of late.
Not every ticker ended Thursday’s action in the black though. At the other end of the spectrum, GoPro (NASDAQ:GPRO) tumbled by a little more than 2% during Thursday’s session, though it did recover all of that — and more — in after-hours trading in response to a relatively good second-quarter report.
And there’s still no certainty as to what the future holds.
The solution to that uncertainty is, as always, ferreting out the names that are setting up better-grounded moves, whether they be up or down. Heading into the last trading day of the week, stock charts of Freeport-McMoRan (NYSE:FCX), Huntington Bancshares (NASDAQ:HBAN) and Royal Caribbean Cruises (NYSE:RCL) are shaping up as your top trading prospects.
Broadly speaking, Freeport-McMoRan has been pressured by a couple of different geopolitical pressures. One of them is, of course, the threat of being caught in the crossfire of the trade war. Another is political turmoil in Indonesia that threatens its ownership of a key property there.
So far shares have managed to not push past the bearish tipping point. But, thanks to Thursday’s weakness, FCX is on the verge of a more serious breakdown. One more bad session could force a steeper selloff to unfurl.
Click to Enlarge • The downtrend since early this year has been well-framed by falling support and resistance lines plotted on the daily chart, and the stock’s back within striking distance of that lower floor. Note that selling volume has perked up of late.
• In the weekly timeframe, it’s also evident that Freeport-McMoRan shares are testing the rising support line that has tagged all the major lows going back to late-2016. There’s no plausible support line under that floor.
• Though the stock is fighting a losing battle, this is a case where FCX would need to break below its support lines before becoming a worthy trade.
Huntington Bancshares (HBAN)
Just like the sellers have their chance to up-end Freeport-McMoRan shares now, they had a chance to do so to Huntington Bancshares a couple of weeks ago. They couldn’t get the job done though. Instead, HBAN shares used a long-term floor as a pushoff point to rekindle a rally.
More than that though, it looks like Huntington Bancshares are now moving on a predictable, repeating stairstep pattern that should carry HBAN shares quite a bit higher before hitting a heading.
Click to Enlarge • The current bullishness is evident on both stock charts, but it’s on the weekly chart we can see that the flattening that ended last month did so because it brushed a rising support line (white, dashed) that extends back to 2016.
• It’s also on the weekly chart of Huntington Bancshares you can see the stairstep pattern in play here, plotted in pink lines.
• The weekly chart also just hammered out a bullish MACD crossover, which don’t come along very often there, but do signal accurately when they do come around.
Royal Caribbean Cruises (RCL)
Last but not least, though price jolts and volume surges generally don’t make for good trading, the rare exceptions to that norm — and context matters — are usually worth the effort.
With that as the backdrop, yesterday’s high-volume intraday swing from Royal Caribbean Cruises may well be a clue that a budding uptrend has been cemented into place.
Click to Enlarge • On the daily chart, we see a bullish outside day, where Thursday’s open and close completely engulfed Wednesday’s high-low range. And it also moved in the opposite direction. Such a decisive intraday swing from bearishness to bullishness indicates a transition from a net-bearish to a net-bullish environment.
• In the weekly timeframe, not only has RCL broken above a falling resistance line that extends all the way back to February’s high, we now have a bullish MACD crossover and a Chaikin line that’s pushed back above the zero level (telling us there’s good volume behind the initial turnaround effort).
• Given Thursday’s volatility, this is a setup that really needs one more bullish day, just to confirm Thursday wasn’t a fluke.
As of this writing, James Brumley did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities. You can follow him on Twitter, at @jbrumley.