Welcome to the new version of the website. While there are probably some tweaks yet to be made, the nuts and bolts of it are as I’d like. Specifically, the ‘Print’ and social media icons are at the bottom of posts now instead of at the left, scrunching the post content into a format that was too thin.
With respect to the ‘Print’ button, you can use it not only to print to paper but also to PDF to save on your device as a file. Just remember to tick the ‘Simplified’ option per this screenshot of last week’s NFTRH 743.
As noted previously, this format (posting content as opposed to creating a ‘Pages’ document, formatting, converting to PDF and uploading, etc.) allows me to get right down to work in a way that feels much more natural for me (been blogging for about 17 years now) and helps me focus better on the main points. For old time’s sake I’ll probably do PDF reports on occasion but unless I hear a big uproar :-) from the subscriber base, this will be the main format going forward.
As a side note to the above, creating the new site version has immersed me into things I’d been avoiding like SEO (search engine optimization) and website performance. So one result of all the work I did last week is a better performing website, for both desktop and mobile versions of the site (with tweaks and improvements to come, I am sure).
Interim Deflation View: Bent But Not (yet) Broken
Regarding the recent bump up in inflationary signaling (led by the bond market), we need to consider whether it is real or a last gasp of the inflation hysteria. In two public posts we noted the state of the long-term (30yr) yield (Continuum) and the 2yr yield. Each ended the week bullish (bearish for bonds) and though scores of bugs and bears would like to believe the January Payrolls report was bogus, it was what it is for now, a blowout number that the market appears to be reacting to (likely expecting the employment situation to ‘cost-push’ more inflation into the economy).
However, the NFTRH view has been for an interim decline in inflation expectations and signaling. That has already happened, but my expectation was for that to continue. So in respecting the bond market I am bending my view but not breaking it. It’s all part of letting the market decide what it will do rather than letting our bias or worse, crystal ball (mine is broken) reading abilities decide.
The crux of the wider macro analysis has seen indicators (e.g. the ‘Continuum’, but also others like M2, Fed balance sheet, etc.) do things they have not done before and hence the deflationary view was labeled ‘interim’ with my question being whether it would be an interruption of a new inflationary age or perhaps the final deflation event of an expiring system? It’s super important to get that right. -Captain Obvious.
An indicator like the Baltic Dry Index continues to demand “deflation!” while the ‘inflation expectations’ ETF continues to look like it is in a topping structure (CRB index on the other hand, feels a bit more bullish when staring at a daily chart).
An indicator like the above linked monthly 30yr yield ‘Continuum’ has pulled back to support and its daily chart version looks constructive (top panel) as does the 10yr below it. If these yields take out the previous highs from late December we will have to swing to a bullish view on yields and thus, on inflation which, given struggling areas of the economy (outside of the massive ‘services’ sectors) could well be the Stagflationary variety.
US Stock Market
Understanding the dominant macro backdrop (inflationary and rising interest rates or deflationary and declining rates) will be very important going forward. Some sectors prefer the macro inputs that contribute to rising interest rates and others do not. As yet, Tech, which would not like to see rates rising again, is still on its bounce vs. the broad SPX (bottom panel). Of greater note, however, is that Semi leadership is still intact not only to Tech (NDX) but also to the broader SPX. This indicator says that the stock market rally is intact. Recalling the grossly over-bullish sentiment profile (ref. NFTRH 743 and 742), the recent corrective activity in markets is normal and necessary.
But the rally is intact technically, as the daily SPX chart shows. After ticking above resistance the pullback began (not long after the Golden Cross of the SMA 50 above the SMA 200 in the least surprising event of the year so far). If the pullback continues SPX should look for support beginning at the 4000 round number, which is just above the moving average convergence, down to 3900, which already supported one pullback on this grinding rally from Q4.
To review, SPX…
- Is still in a bear market downtrend.
- Should the rally resume the next objective is a gap fill at 4219, then a takeout of the August high (4325.28).
- If that were to happen two scenarios would come to the fore: 1) a bear market test (and failure) of the highs with the weekly pattern’s target of 4715 per the chart below, or 2) bear market over, done, kaput.
Let’s take a look at various sector ETFs (daily charts) with SPY doing what SPX is doing, Energy holding its intermediate uptrend, Industrials also doing that along with Financials, Materials and Real Estate. The middle four sectors on the chart are very different, macro wise, than the last one as they are traditionally correlated to rising yields and Real Estate is not. Just another crosswind challenge offered by this market.
Big Tech, Semi, Communications, Cloud and Discretionary are all in similar boats after getting trounced in 2022. That boat is still in bounce mode off of some kind of a bottom in Q4, 2022. Defensive Staples are fading and that is not a negative sign for the stock market, near-term.
Let’s dial in on Semi and again review the daily chart of the SOX index. The pullback that began last week was anticipated due to the grossly over-bullish ‘dumb money’ broad market readings into last week. The pattern neckline shows a slope down to near the rising SMA 50. Hence, that will be an important area to hold to keep the Inverted H&S pattern target of 3750 in play. Again, that target would correlate with the SPX weekly chart scenario above (a test of the highs).
Defensive Healthcare has also been on a pullback, or more accurately an orderly consolidation to test the SMA 200. It is bullish biased. Broad H/C includes BioPharma, Medical Device and services like Healthcare insurers and outlets like CVS, both online and brick and mortar. Medical Device is grinding the uptrending SMA 50 and should hold here to keep it intact to its intermediate rally. I don’t like the look of Biotech, but being biased to a negative correlation with yields, the sagging look is understandable. Transports actually have a nice look above the SMA 50 and check out defensive Utilities; not good (but maybe not a bad sign for risk ‘on’ stock market segments).
US Stock Market Sentiment & Bottom Line
A pullback was needed to clear grossly over-bullish sentiment. Dumb money sentiment has started to pull back but is still very elevated. But in a bull rally meant to reset sentiment (extreme over-bearish back in Q4, 2022) it will be over bullish mostly, with twitches and pullbacks along the way. A slight sentiment twitch is happening now. But the sentiment profile is still not healthy from a contrarian vantage point.
Other sentiment indicators:
- NAAIM (investment managers) are wildly in FOMO/chase mode. Contrary negative.
- Investors Intelligence (newsletters) are on a hard spike upward, not extreme but contrary negative.
- AAII (Ma & Pa) are on a similar spike to II, not extreme but contrary negative.
The bottom line is that the market rally is intact technically, but taking a pullback. The pullback would need to continue short-term in order to put a ding in over-bullish sentiment and potentially extend the life of the rally. Generally, we began in Q4, 2022 with a view of a bear market rally that had stronger bullish elements (post mid-term election pattern, extreme over-bearish sentiment, fading inflation expectations and thus fading ‘Fed hawk’ expectations) to it than any previously in this bear.
The favored view is still bear market rally with the picture clouded a bit after the theoretically cost-pushing January Payrolls report and subsequent signaling in the bond market. So we are on our original theme but very open to revising it if compelled by the markets.
Global Stock Markets
I’d like to stick with the relative views of global markets to the US because I find it fascinating to view the world’s markets through that lens, especially when the US currency is the global ‘anti’ market. USD bounced and could be in a small bull flag (see Currency segment below) and if it continues upward (current price 103.54 with our best target for the near-term at 106) we’d expect more pressure on global markets, generally, and in relation to the US stock market.
It continues to be a somewhat mixed picture in relative terms to the US SPX. Some items like Europe are merely dropping to grind and test the relative SMA 50, while others are turning trends down.
German DAX is also testing the SMA 50, in better form than Europe as a whole.
UK is king of the world.
Australia continues to grind its relative uptrend, below the SMA 50 but above the major uptrend marker, the SMA 200.
Canada’s senior index is neutral/bull biased in relation to the S&P 500.
Canada’s junior index is testing the downtrending SMA 50 from the upside. That MA should probably hold to keep a decent view of a bounce in the speculative inflation stuff alive. The ratio is in a major downtrend, however. Not a buyable chart unless you are speculating on a near-term move in these items. Personally, I am not at this time.
EM got cracked with the USD’s strength. That is about the most normal relationship in the markets these days.
India is on a relative buying opportunity if you are an India bull. A look at a nominal chart of BSE shows a not bad look, putting INDY/INDA on my watch screen.
Japanese Nikkei has been declining relational to SPX since October and is trapped below the Death Crossed SMA 50 and SMA 200. What does that mean for this ratio? Probably a bounce off of the little ‘W’ pattern you can see here. Nominal Nikkei is, by the way, neutral with a slight bear bias.
Hong Kong is testing the relative moving average convergence.
To little surprise, so are China large caps. This is a buying opportunity if you are a China/Asia bull. Relatively speaking, the stop loss on that would be a breakdown below the SMA 200; while nominal FXI is probably going to fill a couple downside gaps and test its SMA 200 (28.71 vs. current price of 30.14), so patience.
Brazil is in a grotesque pattern in relation to the S&P 500. Okay, now watch it boom upward. But still, this is not a pretty picture and it’s a picture I don’t plan to touch. The nominal BVSP chart is nothing to write home about either.
Mexico, hmmm… if you know what’s going on with our southern neighbor, please advise. Because this is a new uptrend with a continued pullback to test the SMA 50, a potential buying opportunity.
Finally, the general Frontier markets are firmly trending down in relation to SPX. No interest.
A large percentage of NFTRH+ updates have been related to gold, silver and the miners. You can check them all here. You can also review a public article on the daily chart situation of GDX here.
I prefer not to cover ground we’ve already discussed, especially with things going as planned. The GDX plan linked above is one of a “healthy correction”, which gold stocks needed, technically. But here I have to speak up so as to be clear. While the precious metals herds will always be bullish or at least not stop being bullish even when bearish signals show up, we will have to deal with reality.
An example of this was in early 2013 as the cyclical Semiconductor sector had begun to flash positive economic cycle signals (back then we used the no longer published book-to-bill ratio as long time subscribers may recall) that projected positively for manufacturing, employment and the economy. Gold stocks were among the last items you’d have wanted to hold in that case.
My point with the above is that if the macro swings away from the favored counter-cyclical view, we will drop the gold stock sector and realize that Bob Hoye’s “post-bubble contraction” will have been avoided once again. I am not nearly in that frame of mind at this time, but if signals like the employment situation, inflation signaling/hawking Fed, Goldilocks and/or other gold-adversarial conditions persist, you know that we will have to adjust.
NFTRH is not now, never has been and never will be a pom pom waving ‘go gold!’, ‘got gold?’ rag. I am a gold bug, sure. But before that I am a realist. Others can carry the dogma and bias, and erect thick walls of denial. We won’t.
Preamble aside, we remain on the “healthy correction” theme and are looking for GDX to dunk below 29 (currently 29.62 ) and fill the gap at 28.92. Per the article linked above there is also a good shot at the 27-28 area, which includes the 200 day moving average. This equates roughly to our originally planned HUI 230 (+/-) level, with Huey’s SMA 200 at 224 currently.
- Corrective pullback in progress. Currently viewed as a healthy pullback and buying opportunity. But in the back of our minds we keep the GDX gap at 22.72 in mind as a currently low priority. That would likely come into play if the macro fundamentals continue to ease, which they have been lately.
- These include gold pulling back lately vs. stocks and commodities. It clings mostly to intermediate uptrends vs. these items, but the relative pullback needs to find support soon or we lose some fundamental rationale, at least temporarily.
- Filed under “hmmm…” I added Oil and Gas on Friday in the form of USO and UNG, which means I think there is a chance they will bottom and rise. If that happens, gold had darn well better rise more or the fundamentals – the ones that matter – will become a headwind.
- From a sector internals perspective, we noted an initial negative hint by the HUI/Gold ratio in this update and that hint has continued. With the 50 day average lost, the ratio is now testing the SMA 200 and is above the last major low from December. So as yet it’s a fairly normal pullback that would go with a correction like the one in progress. But in order to start planning the end of the correction we’d want to soon start seeing signs of gold miner out-performance to their product.
- Looking for support at 1780 to 1820, near-term. Long-term target is 3000+.
- There was no CoT data released last week and now it has been three weeks of no data. Last reading on January 24 implied short-term risk, which was realized. Wondering if CFTC may no longer post this info? Lest gold bugs break out the tin foil hats, the same applies to copper, aluminum, steel, Agricultural and Energy commodities.
- Yet in relation to silver gold has been rising. That is disinflationary signaling and what I’d interpret on the macro right now is that Goldilocks is still in the house. She is usually gold antagonistic and the question is whether she is a mini phase or something more persistent; which is why I mentioned the January, 2013 period above in the US Stock Market segment. Open minds, folks. Extended Goldi is unlikely, but possible.
- Still holding key support #1 in the 22 area. But we’ll remain aware of very viable support at 20.50 to 21. Current price is 22.08.
- Last CoT reading implied risk, as with gold, and that risk is well into being expressed now.
- Silver’s aborted leadership to gold (rising Gold/Silver ratio, at least on an interim basis) is a usually negative signal about inflation and positive one for the global counterparty, the US dollar. But it can also go with Goldilocks, which was anticipated as an interim phase (prior to a deflation scare or in a less favored view, a resumed inflation/stagflation phase).
- Whatever it is, the declining Silver/Gold ratio was also a negative divergence to the precious metals complex before it ever started to pull back as silver topped relative to gold about a month before HUI/GDX topped. Silver is usually (but not always) a leader. In updates we’ve noted a decision point in the Gold/Silver ratio (most recently in this update, which included gold, silver, the GSR and USD) and we nerds are at attention. It’s interesting for we nerds.
Gold and Silver Stocks (daily charts)
Profit was taken on AEM as it bounced to the SMA 50 last week and I decided to raise more cash. It’s on watch for support #1 at 47+ if not #2 below 46.
AGI is still held, although it’s not surprisingly in an ugly little pattern. I’d like to see 10 hold (after a gap fill).
BTG is on watch as it smashed back to a clear support area. It could tick below 3.50 to test the SMA 200. There was actually a time not long ago that I was FOMO’ing BTG. Now? Watching and patient.
HL has remained on casual watch since it was sold some time ago. It filled the lower April gap as expected and one day could go for the upper one (not marked up). But first, how about a test of one or both support levels, including the one coinciding with the SMA 200 at 4.76?
I originally bought the big drop in MAG, but then it failed support (now resistance) and I have no clue where it will find support. But for now I don’t really care as it’s back on watch.
MAI.V (MAIFF) has a significant fan base, pound for pound, because management is trustworthy. Fundamental analysts are saying don’t worry about the weather, it’ll pass and MAI will be fine. Okay, sure. But I am not planning to add just yet to my moderate position. It’s purely downtrending. However, getting too cute with some of these smaller ones can leave you on the outside looking in, as the SBB.TO chart below will advise. Moral of the story is that fundamentalists should double check their funda and not put too much weight on a crappy chart.
ORLA was sold a while ago and is on watch as it continues unspectacularly creeping the uptrending SMA 50.
OGN.V (OGNRF) tends to go its own way with its own would-be news flow. I am just holding it for now and not really looking at this small royalty play.
Man stared at chart of RGLD (after man covered his sector short, DUST) and decided to short the ugly little pattern, which refused to break down last week). Looking for 112 or so, but I won’t have patience with too much screwing around up here at the pattern neckline. Shorts don’t necessarily pay out like cash does.
SBB.TO (SGSVF) did what I did not want it to do, because I’d sold it. This is the story of how the small miners, developers and explorers can pop out of nowhere. SBB didn’t even pop out of nowhere. It’s chart had been holding the uptrending SMA 50 and as noted when I sold it, I did not sell it because of the chart. But still, it ticked a FOMO nerve.
I did however sell SILV for the chart. I had noted what I’d thought was an Inverted H&S (that looked even better on a weekly chart). Well, a TA who wants you to stay bullish on it would call this a “complex” H&S, which is code for a freak with too many shoulders (ref. the May low as well). I’ll call it a breakdown for now and have patience.
Finally, WPM was also sold a while back and I’d like to get 38 to start considering buying it back.
Oil & Gas
Both USO (crude oil) and UNG (NatGas) were added last week, per the trade log. On Gas, the chart advises nothing other than fishing for a bottom (current status is a falling knife with a slight hint of positive RSI/MACD divergence). Commercial hedgers are in a contrary bullish alignment and the seasonal bottoms in February on average, for a run into summer. So I thought it worth a spec.
On WTI oil, the chart took back the SMA 50 again. I am speculating that this time it may actually hold it. I mean, might it not just be time? Oil and Gas have been corrected well and utterly hammered, respectively.
Note that the CRB index and its tracker DBC are each below their downtrending SMA 50. It’s not surprising because while CRB tracks oil most closely, copper/base metals and gold and silver got corrected hard. Here is daily CRB grinding its intermediate downtrend.
Speaking of the good Doctor, copper is still quite intact to its intermediate rally. If you’re a copper bull and you think its got legs, the buying opportunity here is the SMA 50 (3.98) to 3.80 (lateral support). Broader metals (GYX) are a bit weaker, grinding below the daily SMA 50.
The Ags are actually postured in a constructive way within a neutral, slightly bear biased technical situation. Ag traders might want to check the seasonals of individual commodities (Soybeans for example are seasonally bullish in July) if interested. Also, I am keeping an eye on related stocks like MOS and NTR, which as yet have not done much technically, but are each somewhat constructive looking on daily charts.
I decided to hold just u3o8 when raising cash last week. That meant at least temporarily putting NXE back on watch along with URNM, UUUU, etc. This chart of the u3o8 fund SRUUF is neutral and hinting constructive. Recall that the Uranium price is in consolidation of a larger break upward from a long-term bottoming situation. The long-term chart allows for lower on the consolidation, but as long as it holds the daily moving averages, it’s also a candidate to take a next leg up.
Lithium, Specialty Materials, Platinum & Palladium
Let’s bullet point them in order…
- Lithium price has been correcting since Q4, but is still very elevated longer-term. Favored Li stocks ALB and LTHM were sold on their hysterical bounces and now they too are pulling back. As yet the pullback appears of the ‘buying opportunity variety, subject to the macro of course.
- Specialty Materials like Rare Earth Elements and other critical materials for a modern world are, as indicated by REMX and MP, the two items I watch, in pullback mode. May well be a buying opportunity, but such a buy would not be with the trends, which are still down. Hence, little current interest. As for Pt and Pd, they are on a hard correction to the SMA 200 and firmly trending down, respectively. No current interest, although the vehicle I’d use if I had interest is SBSW.
USD is dealing with the resistance of its SMA 50 while the Gold/Silver ratio deals with its SMA 200. I’d still consider the minimum rally – when all is said and done – to tick 106 and the SMA 200 for USD. But if a larger bear market A-B-C rally is the play we’d look for the resistance coinciding with the 62% Fib retrace level around 109 as a logical destination over the course of 2023.
Here again is the weekly chart sketching out such a scenario that would likely play out over many months. For now let’s just note it and call it viable.
The cavalcade of global currencies has gotten dinged with USD’s bounce so far. But as USD is still struggling with its intermediate downtrend marker (SMA 50) so too are global paper struggling to hold theirs. It’s a Kabuki dance of the reserve currency vs. the rest.
Bottom Line Currency Situation
On the short-term things are at decision points, as evidenced by the 50 day averages in global currencies and the US dollar, on the opposing side. I can’t tell you whether these currency charts are going to hold trend or not, but it is likely that if they do not (USD takes out its SMA 50 and global loses theirs) risk is likely to be realized on the macro in general. It’s no coincidence that the charts directly above bottomed around the same time that equity markets did. So in order to keep the Q4-Q1 asset market rally theme going intermediate trends need to hold here and now.
“Savings” Account: All cash & interest bearing equivalents, balanced by gold.
Trading Account: Short RGLD as noted in the trade log and the report above. Just messing around.
Roth IRA (non-taxable, no contributions): Cash & equivalents are a very comfortable 88% currently. Here you can see Gas and Oil added to specs that were more for the Goldilocks/disinflation view like DDOG (back for a 3rd go-round), DBX, AMZN, DOCU, etc. A few gold stocks are held just because. The CDTX spec was pruned to make sure I took some ridiculous profit (HT, Rich) and there are the bonds, which have weakened with the recent post-Payrolls bump up in bond market inflation signaling.
But 88% cash/equiv? That stuff keeps paying every month and it offers a nice position with which to have patience. For example, I want to have patience when evaluating the gold sector from a macro funda perspective and also keep in mind that precious metals corrections often seem to further than you might originally think. 2023 will be a long year and I see things at decision points now. We’ll continue to review the narrative (equities, economy, inflation/deflation/Goldilocks, etc.) and adjust if needed. It’s not yet needed, but some indications are twitching.
This Post Has 2 Comments
Gary, you might want to post in charts, the chart of the 2 yr, 10 yr , and 30 yr bond yields for a few months as they seem important at the moment….Dyrl
Good idea, Dryl. Let me see what I can do.
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