Market Psychology Finally Takes Bearish Turn
Sentiment polls showing deeper pessimism � and that�s good news
By Ken Hoover�Investor's Business Daily
Investors and their advisers are finally turning bearish. It�s about time. It only took a 64% drop in the Nasdaq to make them sweat.
"The buy-the-dips mentality is so ingrained in so many people that the more the market has fallen, the more they say buy the dips," said Rod Smyth, chief investment officer for First Union Securities. "This is the first time since the 1970s that we�ve had a bear market that goes down a long time and goes down a lot. We�ve had a lot of crashes (before). But you didn�t have to endure more than a month or two of pain before the market came back."
Market sentiment gives key clues to the market direction. The recent bearish turn may be signaling that the market is nearing a bottom.
One way to gauge market sentiment is with polls.
They should be read in a contrary way. Optimism is bad. It means investors are too eager. Most available cash is already in the market.
Pessimism is good. Everyone already has sold as much as they�re going to sell. Cash on the sidelines is ready to fuel the next bull market.
But polls should be used only as secondary indicators. Investors should watch the market�s price and volume action as their primary tool. It�s hard to tell how much optimism or pessimism is enough. It varies with each bull and bear market.
Advisers have remained stubbornly bullish through the yearlong decline. On Wednesday, the number of bulls fell to 48.9 weeks. The number of bears was 30.9%. That�s still a dangerous level of optimism given the market�s woes.
"A lot of newsletters focused on the Fed," Burke said. "When the Fed lowered interest rates the first day of the year, with the anticipation there were more rate cuts to come, that kept a lot of people in the bullish camp. The bulls were reluctant to go negative the week before the Fed acted. If there were a massive rally, they�d look foolish. When the Fed cut rates and the market dropped anyway, more of them became bearish."
One way to analyze the Investors Intelligence and AAII polls is to subtract the bears from the bulls, ignoring the fence-sitters. Zero is neutral. Readings of plus or minus 20 show extremes in sentiment.
Last week, the index hit 19 in the weekly newsletter. That�s the best reading in more than 10 years.
The Consensus Index of Bullish Market Opinion, in Kansas City, Mo., also comes out Tuesday night. It tracks more than 100 stock and futures advisers. The index is the number of bullish advisers. Publisher Richard Salva says readings above 75 show excessive optimism. Readings below 25 show too much pessimism.
It, too, is showing advisers are bearish. The latest reading is 10, the lowest in more than a decade.
First Union�s Smyth thinks the bottom is near. But he thinks investors have to give up their fascination with tech stocks before a new bull market can begin.
"I�m waiting for people to stop asking me when they can buy Cisco," he said.
Dover Downs Entertain is in strong hands. It has more than 100,000 short interest. We are in the first quarter window dressing. Buyers only come at the top.
Dover Downs Entertainment (DVD US) was reiterated ``buy'' by analyst Edward S Williams at Gerard Klauer Mattison & Co. The 12-month target price is $20.00 per share.
By the time day is over, in my opinion there will be 10,000 volume. It looks like everyone is waiting for the opening for the direction.
You must be busy with JDSU & TTN, how about the others?
10:15:16 AM EST - Thursday, March 29, 2001
No trade yet. Are you going to buy or you want we to do it? Someone has to break the ice.
Happy Birthday Harry �ByVolume
harry_the_plunger's profile Last Updated: March 29, 2001
Yahoo! ID: harry_the_plunger
Long name with no fame. Try again, shame ! What is your game.
ByVolume: Re: Sell Now! Cry Later! � DVD Board??
by: (78/M) 03/29/01 08:33 am EST
Msg: 1454 of 1454
harry_the_plunger >Is this the DVD board? Yahoo allows posters to join a club devoted to a particular subject. Maybe that would be a better place for the investment strategy-related materials that you post and that consume a good amount of space.
ByVolume: Please look at this message board, there is enough messages about DVD.
harry_the_plunger >The stock of DVD is quite illiquid and the typical spreads are such that the principals and strategies to which you refer are largely inapplicable.
ByVolume: That is what you think. WE ARE COLLECTING AT THESE LEVELS. Please wait a few more weeks. Once everyone on this message (silent majority) board has a chance to collect DVD shares at bargain prices.
harry_the_plunger >Presentation at a club site would free the rest of us from having to pour through irrelevant material.
ByVolume: harry_the_plunger, please use the filter. And the word �US� stands for all the clowns who lost money on other messages boards. Before telling others about relevant information on DVD. It is your turn to do the like wise.
ByVolume: Some of the big players are waiting for the right signal to plunge in DVD. Please show us your wisdom on DVD. Otherwise create more names and bash this message board. What other stocks do you have if any? In future please leave the old name, so that others can see if you have some investment knowledge.
Is this the DVD board? Yahoo allows posters to join a club devoted to a particular subject. Maybe that would be a better place for the investment strategy-related materials that you post and that consume a good amount of space. The stock of DVD is quite illiquid and the typical spreads are such that the principals and strategies to which you refer are largely inapplicable. Presentation at a club site would free the rest of us from having to pour through irrelevant material.
Bear Markets of the Past 100 Years
Sep 1899___Sep-1900___78 to 53___-32%
Jun-1901___Nov-1903___78 to 42___-46%
Jan-1906___Nov-1907___103 to 53___-49%
Nov-1909___Sep-1911___101 to 73___-27%
Sep-1912___Jul-1914___94 to 71___-24%
Nov-1916___Dec-1917___110 to 66___-40%
Nov-1919___Aug-1921___120 to 64___-47%
Sep-1929___Jul-1932___381 to 41___-89%
Mar-1937___Mar-1938___194 to 99___-49%
Nov-1938___Apr-1939___158 to 121___-23%
Sep-1939___Apr-1942___156 to 93___-40%
May-1946___Jun-1949___213 to 162___-24%
Apr-1956___Oct-1957___521 to 420___-19%
Jan-1960___Oct-1960___685 to 566___-17%
Dec-1961___Jun-1962___735 to 536___-27%
Feb-1966___Oct-1966___996 to 744___-25%
Dec-1968___May-1970___985 to 631___-36%
Jan-1973___Dec-1974___1052 to 578___-45%
Sep-1976___Feb-1978___1016 to 742___-27%
Apr-1981___Aug-1982___1024 t o 777___-24%
Aug-1987___Oct-1987___2722 t o 1739___-36%
Jul-1990___Oct-1990___3000 t o 2365___-21%
Jul-1998___Sep-1998___9250 to 7800___-16%
Jan-2000___???????___ 11850 to ????___ ????
SUMMARY AND CONCLUSIONS
There have been 23 Bear Markets during the last 100 years. Bear Market declines ranged from -16% (1998) to -89% (1929-1932).
Consequently, if the current DJII Bear Market were to fall the average amount (34%), one would expect the DJII to find its nadir at about 7800. HOWEVER, since market excesses in the late 1990s approached those of 1929, we believe this Bear Market will be far worse than the 100 year average. The numbers suggest this Bear Market will be at least as bad as the 1973-1974 debacle (-45%), which translates to a Dow of 6500.
And if indeed the evolving Bear Market equals the 1973-1974 time length (23 months) , the DJII should reach bottom in January 2002. But then again, this secular Bear Market may well last a number of years longer in order to work off all the excess exuberance.
There is ample precedent for a protracted secular bear market. Recall the Dow first topped 1000 (intra-day) in 1966. And it languished there for the next 17 years (till 1982), when the Dow finally broke the shackles of the 1000 level. To be sure there is nothing on the economic horizon suggesting this Bear Market will be short-lived.
ByVolume: Sell Now! Cry Later! Or if you have to gamble, then go to the casino for better odds.