The Last Resistance Level Before a Major S&P 500 Breakout

Jeff Macke

Depending on who you ask, the stock market is: a) overbought, b) a bubble, c) poised to go much higher, d) on the cusp of a correction, e) anything else you could possibly think of and then some. Whenever a range of opinions is this wide and passions this high, it's a great time to step back and take a look at the charts. Charts don't care how you personally feel or what you hear at the cocktail party. That's one reason pros tend to use them; whether they admit to it or not.

As the co-founder of Greg Troccoli has been using price charts to guide his trading for more than a quarter of a century. In the attached clip he shares his strategy for playing the S&P 500's next move.

Troccoli describes himself as bullish overall but he's keeping a tight leash on his positions. "You could go down to the 200-day moving average line and not change the overall four-year trend and go all the way to 1,440," he says.

Such a move would be not dissimilar to what happened last year when stocks got off to a torrid start in the first quarter only to give the gains back in a tough Q2. A move to 1,440 would leave stocks up less than 2% for 2013.

The beauty of technicals is that Troccoli isn't relying on his gut or the latest news from Cyprus to inform his decision. He's listening to the market rather than making a negative forecast. "I don't really start to turn negative unless we close, not intra-day, but close below 1,535."Stocks have made multiple runs at new highs in recent days. For those keeping score at home there is a "triple top" in the mid-1560 area. Should that give way and close above the 1570 area Troccoli's work suggests a move much higher than anyone might think is in the cards.

Put it on your radar and link to this story if you want to check his work later. Those looking to trade aggressively can buy as stocks approach support and use 1,535 as a stop. Something to mull for those of you obsessing over live reports outside Cyprian ATM machines.

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