Following through on the gains made earlier this week, the S&P 500 rallied another 0.95% on Thursday, just touching record-highs as a result. Although impressive, the rally is also fragile and may actually be setting up a sizeable wave of profit-taking.
Whatever it was, pot stocks set the tone. Canopy Growth (NYSE:CGC) was up more than 2% on news that shareholders had approved its impending acquisition of Acreage, while Tilray (NASDAQ:TLRY) popped more than 9% on some renewed industry-wide sentiment.
PG&E (NYSE:PCG) was the day’s biggest major-name winner though, up nearly 15% after California Governor Gavin Newsom suggested the state’s government help facilitate a way for the utility company to pay for the fire damage it contributed to last year. The organization continues to find itself in a more manageable position.
None are names that are great trading prospects as we head into the final day of the workweek, however. Instead, take a look at the stock charts of Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ), General Electric (NYSE:GE) and Ventas (NYSE:VTR) for trading possibilities.
It was only a few days ago Ventas was knocking on the door of a big breakout move. The only line left to cross was a modestly important technical ceiling right around $65. And, given the momentum already in place by that time, which was backed by a long-term support line, the odds of that move taking shape were high.
That breakout move did end up taking shape. But, consider this a cancellation of that call, and even a reversal of it. VTR stock is up 10% since that last look, and had been up as much as 13%. But, yesterday’s high and a couple of other clues all suggest the effort has run its course and is now out of gas.
- While trends need volume to remain in place, volume surges like the one Ventas dished out on Thursday often indicate a final flushout of would-be buyers. The way VTR peeled back from the intraday high also says the profit-takers are already starting to take over.
- Zooming out to the weekly chart we see two immediate red flags. One of them is the way yesterday’s peak aligns with all the major highs going back to 2013. The other is the fact that the RSI indicator has just entered overbought territory.
General Electric (GE)
For months now, General Electric have been working on a recovery move, but it always seems to be up-ended right before it solidifies. Those months have been spent in vain, however. The bulls and bears have inadvertently drawn key lines in the sand that, if crossed, would likely flag a longer-lived move rather than more choppiness.
The buyers finally — albeit quietly — pushed GE stock over what had become a well-established ceiling. Better yet, it happened with solid support behind the move, and has brought another bullish trigger within reach.
- The ceiling that was hurdled on Thursday is the $10.49 level, marked in yellow on both stock charts. GE shares had been unable to move above that line despite three attempts since March. The fourth one yesterday worked.
- Just as impressive is the buying volume that’s taken shape with the recent advance. Tuesday’s and Thursday’s gains were both made on above average volume, hinting there may be a lot of would-be buyers waiting in the wings for a victory like yesterday’s.
- It’s not happened yet, but the purple 50-day moving average line is about to cross above the white 200-day moving average line. This so-called golden cross is viewed as a buying trigger for many investors, and could accelerate the effort.
Verizon Communications (VZ)
Finally, with nothing more than a passing glance it would look as if Verizon Communications shares are just going through a patch of volatility that can be expected as part of a longer-term uptrend. And, perhaps that’s all this is.
A lengthier and more critical look, however, also shows that distinct possibility that VZ shares are slowly winding their way into a bit of technical trouble. Although it will still take a few days to know for sure, and any problems wouldn’t be terribly devastating, the threat is significant enough to start watching out for now.
- The looming red flag is the potential death cross, where the purple 50-day moving average falls below the white 200-day moving average line, spurring algorithm-based selling as well as spooking casual chart watchers.
- At the same time, note there has already been a string of lower highs since November’s peak, and the weekly chart’s MACD lines continue to sink. The momentum is already downward.
- For better or worse, should Verizon shares stumble, the daily chart shows a likely support area around $52.50, while the weekly chart’s big floor is the rising support line that has tagged all the major lows going back to mid-2017.
As of this writing, James Brumley did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities. You can learn more about James at his site, jamesbrumley.com, or follow him on Twitter, at @jbrumley.