Nasdaq Today: Maintaining Altitude Amid Uncertainty

Nasdaq Today - Nasdaq Today: Maintaining Altitude Amid Uncertainty

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It was a boring day for the Nasdaq today. While Friday’s session highs did push it to new highs on the week, the index couldn’t close there. The Nasdaq fell 0.24% on the day, but still logged a 3.1% gain for the week.

nasdaq today
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For comparison purposes, the S&P 500 rallied 0.02% and the Dow Jones fell 0.13% on Friday. Where does that leave us going into next week?

Call me crazy, but it seems like there could be some upside. Short of geopolitical tension or trade-war tweets from the President over the weekend setting up the market for a selloff, some risks are being shelved for the moment. President Trump said he will meet with China’s president at the G20 summit, which starts on June 28th. That’s got investors cautiously optimistic.

Further, the Fed has more or less said it’s willing to be accommodative going forward, while market expectations call for a rate hike at the July FOMC meeting. With equities holding up at or just below all-time highs, there’s reason for optimism in the short term.

Whether a trade deal gets done doesn’t immediately matter. Optimism for a productive meeting could be enough to gravitate stocks higher over the coming days.

Trading the Nasdaq Today

chart of the nasdaq today
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Source: Chart courtesy of

We don’t usually use the Nasdaq today column to trade the index, but it’s worth taking a quick peek.

It’s totally possible that 8,100 keeps the Nasdaq in check and we see a pullback down to the 50-day moving average. However, it’s also possible that we’re seeing a bullish inverse head-and-shoulders setup and that a move through 8,100 could trigger a rally to new all-time highs.

As we pointed out earlier this week though, a move like this may be pretty tough without FANG and Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) participating. We noted that Apple, Facebook (NASDAQ:FB), Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX) and Alphabet (NASDAQ:GOOG, NASDAQ:GOOGL) are more than 13% off their highs.

Of the group, only Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) is less than 10% off its highs. Without FAANG participation, new highs will be hard — but not impossible.

Winners in the Nasdaq Today

Biotech and healthcare stocks continue to rack up decent gains this week. Gilead Sciences (NASDAQ:GILD) continues its breakout (flagged here), while Alexion Pharma (NASDAQ:ALXN) has strung together a nice multi-day win streak. The latter climbed another 2.75% on Friday, doing so on two-times normal volume. Biogen (NASDAQ:BIIB) and Incyte (NASDAQ:INCY) also logged decent gains on above-average volume.

Overstock (NASDAQ:OSTK) racked up big-time gains on Friday, climbing 15.5% on positive commentary from its CEO. Specifically, he said there are “two very attractive acquirers” for its retail business in discussion. This stock is a controversial one, to say the least, but its action is worth mentioning.

Is Slack (NYSE:WORK) a winner today? Well, its 3.8% slide makes it hard to say that it is. But that said, it’s still 43% above its IPO price after going public on Thursday. Short of Uber (NYSE:UBER) and Lyft (NASDAQ:LYFT), the IPO market remains pretty hot.

Losers of the Day

The gains come and the gains go — and my do they do so quickly. Advanced Micro Devices (NASDAQ:AMD), Nvidia (NASDAQ:NVDA), Broadcom (NASDAQ:AVGO) and other chip stocks were among some of the market’s biggest winners at the start of the week. Now, they’re ending the week as some of the biggest losers. The U.S. banned more Chinese firms, helping deal a blow to the semiconductor group, while Micron (NASDAQ:MU) was another big laggard.

Baird analysts cut their price target on Micron as they pushed back their expectations for a NAND recovery into 2020. It was a double-whammy though, as JPMorgan analysts also cut their EPS estimates for Micron, which fell 2.65% on the day. While shares closed of the lows, it lost its 10-day moving average and is setting up for more potential losses. It obviously hurt others in the group, like Lam Research (NASDAQ:LRCX) and Applied Materials (NASDAQ:AMAT) too.

Shares of PayPal (NASDAQ:PYPL) slipped 2.2% on Friday after chief operating officer Bill Ready said he will leave the company to “pursue entrepreneurial interests outside the company.” Don’t worry though. In typical PayPal fashion, Ready will be around until the end of the year, so there’s no reason to panic just yet.

Nio (NASDAQ:NIO) looked like it wanted to breakout, but was quickly swatted lower when it ran into resistance. Shares sank 6.7% in Friday’s session and is now teetering just above key support.

Finally, Align Technology (NASDAQ:ALGN) ended the week on a tough note, slipping 4.1%. The stock has been putting in a series of lower highs and looks like it could be rolling over. Let’s see if the 200-day moving average can save it next week.

Bottom Line on the Nasdaq Today

While bulls were likely looking for a stronger finish to the day, the markets did a solid job navigating this week’s hurdles. Let’s see if the Nasdaq can build on that momentum next week or whether a pullback is in store.

Bret Kenwell is the manager and author of Future Blue Chips and is on Twitter @BretKenwell. As of this writing, Bret Kenwell is long AAPL, GOOGL, AMZN, AMD, NVDA and AVGO.

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