The S&P 500 and NASDAQ both notched new all-time highs on Thursday before taking a breather on Friday and closing slightly lower. Last weeks action leaves us in a confirmed uptrend and we remain cautiously bullish here at TTP. The Russell 2000 still remains timid on its recent breakout attempt and actually chalked up a distribution day on Friday. A solid breakout on this small cap index would go a long way in ramping up our bullishness here. As for our current portfolio, we scored a solid week of trade and there were no new sales or additions. With that, lets take a closer look at the indices before moving on to a detailed review of our current trades.
S&P500- Although the distribution picture has improved here, we would like to see some more robust volume on the upside but I suppose we don’t get everything we want. Distribution days over the last 20 sessions sit at four, but one of those days will come of the count early next week. Again, just to review, five such days over 20 consecutive trading days raises a caution flag for us. It does not produce any sell signals however, we will proceed with more caution when we see this as it sometimes fore warns of a coming correction. Although we closed lower Friday on an increase in volume from Thursdays session, it is not counted as a distribution day as we not only closed in the upper half of the days range but right at the high for the day. In summary, uptrend in tact and recent new highs so party on!
NASDAQ- The Naz narrowly missed closing at all-time highs on Friday as it finally notched a down day after 10 consecutive days of gains and distribution days here sit at only three over the last twenty sessions. Telecom and Biotech have been a couple of groups that have led the charge higher. We will be hit with a slew of earnings beginning next week, many of them in the biotech sector. Good earnings and outlooks here may be the fuel to propel us even higher. The 6340 area on this index may be something to monitor on at pullback in the near future.
Russell 2000- This has been our problem child. Over the last eight months the index has continued to consolidate in a sideways base while its counter parts have been trending higher for the most part. It looked like it was finally ready to breakout this week but was thrown back in the penalty box once again on Friday racking up a distribution day in the process. That is the fifth such day we’ve seen this month. Adding to our concerns, we can see in the chart below that some of the recent up days have seen very tempered volume. What we really need to see soon is a breakout with some heavy participation and a close over the 143.00 level. Perhaps its the summer doldrums that is keeping participation suppressed, but its always wise to pay attention to volume at such key levels.
Now let’s move on and take a look at our open positions.
HIIQ- This stock has been a solid performer for us so far. We took a LONG position on 6/14 at $21.97 and we were able to lock in swing trading profits on half of our position in a matter of seven days netting us 13.65%. We are now following the trend with the second half of our shares and with a closing price of $28.05 on Friday, we are now up 27.67%. With the Healthcare Plan group remaining an area of strength, hopefully we will be riding this trend a bit longer, but as always we maintain our protective stop bumping it up to near $25.00.
MDXG- In last weeks review we laid out our journey with this stock in more detail so you may want to take a look back to get up to speed if you missed last weeks write up. Due to our concerns about the markets mid- month we took a bit a defensive posture with MDXG and sold half of our position netting a modest 3% gain. Outside of a brief spurt in late June, we have pretty much moved sideways on this trade however, if you’ve been with us for any length of time this is not normally a reason for us to sell. For our new followers, check out our past article entitled “Don’t Be So Fast to Give Up On That Stale Trade” which chronicles our UCTT trade that ultimately netted us 103%. As for MDXG, note that their earnings will be released on 7/27. Seeing that we are down to half of our original position and are in positive territory, we will hold our shares. Our stop is currently near the 50 day EMA.
SEDG- After having noted surprising strength in Solar stocks in our recent scans, we took a LONG position in SloarEdge Technologies on 7/12 at a price of $21.47. The stock has moved up modestly since closing at $22.25 for the week leaving us with a gain of 3.61% so far. Our swing trade profit target on the first half of our shares still remains near $24.25. Our stop has been inched up slightly to near $20.00. Lets hope we’ve caught on early to a rebirth in the solar arena.
GILD- On Thursday we put out a write up laying out our process in taking our position in Gilead Sciences. The Biotech area has been hot with the group now sitting at #4 on the leaderboard among 197 other industry groups. The stock had suffered a steep decline over the last two years but looks as if it may be starting to reverse that trend. In keeping with that thesis, we opened a LONG position on 7/13 at $70.81. The stock has steadily marched higher since, closing the week at $73.76 leaving us with a gain of just over 4%. We have a swing trade target of $80.00, however, seeing that we still have a full position and GILD announcing earnings on Wednesday, we may need to close out half our shares. Hopefully we will get a good opportunity to do just that early next week. We will send out an alert when we take action so make sure your Twitter notification is set. As a result of recent strength in the shares we have moved our stop up to near $70.00.
BURL- Finally to our SHORT position in Burlington. We opened our position on 7/5 at a price of $89.05. The stock started picking up some steam to the downside late last week trading as low as $84.86 before firming up a bit into the close finishing the week at $85.69. This leaves us with a 3.87% gain so far however, we took note of the extremely heavy volume on Friday coupled with the late day recovery. We will be on high alert as to how the stock acts Monday and put an alert out if we take any action. Again, trading on the short side, especially in the midst of a bull market can prove to be difficult and as a result we trade our short positions with much more discretion. Hopefully the late day action Friday ends up being a blip on the radar screen and BURL shares continue to trend lower. We have moved our stop down to near $92.00 but again, we will lift that stop if we need to take any immediate action to cover our position.
That’s all for this week. Enjoy the rest of your weekend and we will see you all Monday!