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By Lawrence G. McMillan

Stocks have hunkered down into an even narrower trading range this week, although intraday volatility has seen some large moves. As a result, $SPX is still in the confines of the 4050-4200 trading range in the short term, and from a longer-term perspective is in the trading range it's been in all year: 3760-3850 on the downside to 4200 on the upside.

Equity-only put-call ratios remain on sell signals. Put volume hasn't been extremely high, but it is relatively high considering that the market has been flat. As long as these are both trending higher, they will remain on their respective sell signals.

Breadth has bounced back and forth over the past week. For the record, the massive positive breadth day on May 5th created new breadth oscillator buy signals from both NYSE and "Stocks only" breadth oscillators. Since then, it's been weakening, but technically the buy signal is still in place.

With $VIX at 17, there are two buy signals in effect: 1) the "spike peak" buy signal of last week, which would be stopped out if $VIX were to close above 21.33 its most recent peak, and 2) the trend of $VIX buy signal, which most recently began in March in the circled area of Figure 4.

In summary, we are not holding a "core" position because of the trading range of $SPX. Individual indicators are generating mixed signals, which is to be expected. We will continue to trade those individual signals as they occur.

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

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