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Weekly Stock Market Commentary 5/22/2020

By Lawrence G. McMillan

The action over the past few days has been just above those old relative highs at 2955, but has certainly not been a true breakout from the previous trading range. The high this week was 2980.

There is now support at that low from May 14th (2765), as well as the bottom of the trading range (2720) and then at 2650, where some work was done in late March and early April. The next resistance area if the market should rally further, is at 3000 (the 200-day moving average is there) and 3020 (the area of the July and September 2019 temporary highs.

Equity-only put-call ratios remain on buy signals, since they are still falling. The standard ratio (Figure 2) is extremely low on its chart. It is now lower that it was all of 2019, and seems intent on reaching the multi-year lows of January 2020. Thus, it is overbought and it represents a massive amount of optimism abounding in the market right now.

Market breadth, on the other hand, remains lackluster. For the record, both oscillators are on buy signals, having recently canceled out sell signals. But they are just barely into overbought territory (above +200) and thus could easily revert to sell signals.

Volatility has mixed signals, as it has had for some time. In the short term, the $VIX chart is positive in that the "spike peak" buy signals are still in effect.

From an intermediate-term perspective, though, the $VIX chart remains negative for stocks since $VIX continues to close above its 200-day moving average (currently, just above 24 and rising slowly).

In summary, the picture remains more positive in the short- term and negative in the intermediate-to-long term.

This Market Commentary is an abbreviated version of the commentary featured in The Option Strategist Newsletter.

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