The market has staged a ferocious oversold rally. Bear market rallies always look great until they fail. This rally has now reached the upper side of the downtrend channel (blue lines in Figure 1). Of course, it is always possible that this is the real thing i.e., a market bottom -- and not an oversold rally. In my opinion, the difference- maker will be if $SPX can close above 4600.
Stocks continue to struggle. The downtrend of $SPX is quite evident in Figure 1, and as long as that Index is in a downtrend, a "core" bearish position can be maintained. $SPX made a new closing low this week, as it probed down towards 4100 once again. The general area of 4100 4200 still represents near-term support. Below that, the next support area (red horizontal line on chart) is at the highs of about a year ago, just below 4000.
The chart of $SPX is bearish, with lower highs and lower lows. That is the most important thing to take away from Figure 1. After spiking sharply lower a week ago, $SPX has engineered another oversold rally. In a bear market, those are often swift but usually die out at or just above the declining 20-day Moving Average. It would take a clear breakout over the resistance at 4600 in order to re-establish a bullish trend for the $SPX chart.
The media seems to think that everything that is wrong with the market and the economy is due to the military conflict, but that is not the case. $SPX is in a bear market and will continue to be as long as the downtrend exists (see the blue line in Figure 1). However, the action on February 24th exacerbated an already oversold condition, and now another oversold rally seems to be taking place.
Most people don’t realize that the Crash of 1929 and the Crash of 1987 both occurred exactly 55 calendar days after the stock market had topped. All prices in this article are closing prices on the day being referenced.
1929: the peak in the Dow was reached on September 3rd, when it closed at 381.17. 55 calendar days after September 3rd was (Monday) October 28th. That was the exact date of the Crash of 1929, with the Dow down 40.58 points, or 13.5%.
The tensions regarding a potential Russian armed invasion of Ukraine have caused some wider than usual swings in the market, but the underlying causes of the bearish action on the stock market are far greater than this potential conflict.
$SPX remains in a downtrend (see blue line on the chart in Figure 1), and that is what makes the chart bearish. The fact that the various short-term moving averages and the "modified Bollinger Bands" are all sloping downwards only adds to the bearishness.