Monday, May 18, 2015

Uneasy lies the market

Uneasy lies the market
Stocks underwent a week of intense volatility with dramatic plunges and equally sharp pull-backs in each trading session. This spells good tidings for both the bulls and the bears.
Buying seems to be emerging at every decline, stemming the fall and causing sharp reversals. On the other hand, the Sensex and the Nifty are struggling to break past the ceiling formed by the 200-day moving average.
But there are numerous positives that the market can use to clamber higher this week. The US market is roaring higher as weak data points have further strengthened the expectation that the Fed will not hike rates too aggressively this calendar.
Declining consumer and wholesale price inflation numbers in India provide headroom for further rate cuts by the RBI.
The rupee has halted its slide around the 64.5 mark and is strengthening again.
This will help curb FPI outflows that are closely related to the currency movement. According to data released by SEBI, foreign investors turned net buyers on Thursday.
The dollar has also begun correcting sharply. Finally, the dollar index is down 7 per cent from the recent peak of 100.27. This will also provide respite to the rupee and take the pressure off the RBI to protect the rupee.
Given these factors, the market can attempt to consolidate at these levels.
The FPI flows will be a key determinant of short-term trend on the bourses. They have pulled out $1.19 billion from the Indian stock market in May.
The outflow from debt is higher at $2.6 billion. For the calendar 2015, however, FPIs have bought stocks worth $6.6 billion and debt worth $5.9 billion.
The fresh set of earnings announcements, Prime Minister Modi’s visit to China and the movement of the rupee will keep investors riveted in the week ahead.
Sensex (27,324)
The Sensex has been moving in a narrow band between the 26,423 and 27,500 over the past week.
The week ahead: The index has formed a low around the previous bottom at 26,469 and is attempting to protect it. This remains the important support to watch out for now.
The resistance exists at 27,500, where the 200-day moving average is positioned.
The 38.2 per cent retracement of the previous down-move also occurs at this junction. Inability to move above this level will imply weakness and the possibility of a decline soon. That said, a move above 27,500 does not necessarily clear the path for the Sensex as a more formidable hurdle exists around 27,820 and 28,100.
Reversal from these resistances will imply that the downtrend from the 30,024 peak will have legs that will pull it lower to the next medium-term support level.
Medium term trend: The Sensex has already reached our first medium-term target around 26,300. It is obvious that a three wave down-move is complete from the peak at 30,024.
But failure to move beyond 28,100 level in the Sensex will imply that it is moving towards the next medium-term target zone of 25,700 or 25,200.
A strong close above 28,700 is needed to mitigate the bearish outlook.
Nifty (8,262.3)
The Nifty is stuck in the 8,000-8,300 range over the past two weeks.
The week ahead: A three-wave down move appears to have ended at the low of 7,997 in the Nifty. The index has support around 7,961, the trough formed on December 17. It has halted close to this level and is attempting to stabilise.
Immediate hurdle for the index is at 8,323. Presence of the 200-day moving average in the vicinity lends weight to this hurdle. If the index keeps moving in the current range, it will imply weakness and the possibility of a decline to 7,800 or 7,452.
Move beyond 8,350 will take the index to the next hurdles at 8,434 and 8,682. The outlook for the index will turn positive only on a strong close above 8,682.
Medium-term trend: As explained earlier, the Nifty has the first medium target at 7,994 and then at 7,670.
The index is currently attempting to consolidate around the first target. But if the current sideways move continues or if the index fails to move beyond 8,435, decline to 7,670 becomes possible.
The extent of the current bounce-back will determine how far the index can go in the days ahead.
Global cues
Most global indices recovered last week to close with minor gains. With the fears of the Fed going on an interest rate hiking spree receding, the CBOE volatility index declined to close the week at 12.3, close to the lower end of its recent support band.
European benchmarks, however, turned weak as the Greece crisis reared its head again. DJ Euro STOXX 50 closed about 2 per cent lower.
US markets were gung-ho with the benchmarks closing at record highs. The Dow Jones Industrial Average ended above the 18,000 mark at 18,272.
As we have been writing, the index has been moving in a range of 17,500 and 18,500 since this February. Break beyond 18,300 can take the index to 18,830 in the coming sessions.
It was a tepid show by most Asian markets. Some benchmarks such as the Taiwan Weighted, Karachi 100 and Hang Seng recorded steep declines.

Sunday, May 3, 2015

Index outlook: Stocks on a slippery slope

Index outlook: Stocks on a slippery slope

We have entered May, the month in which the stock market is at its quirkiest, either giving outsized gains (May 2009, 2014) or terrible losses (May 2004, 2006). Unfortunately, the Indian market is appearing quite vulnerable at the outset of this tricky period.
The week that went by was quite adverse for the market trend for various reasons. It made both the Sensex and the Nifty close below their long-term 200-day moving average lines. The Sensex and the Nifty are now down more than 10 per cent from their recent peaks, this is the deepest decline seen since the Modi-rally began in August 2013. Finally, weekly momentum indicators have declined deep into the negative zone, reaching levels last recorded in 2013.
As we have explained earlier, these are long-term reversal signals and they need to sustain for a couple of weeks to confirm a reversal. It is thus best not to press the panic button immediately. As we all know, the market can be quite whimsical.
The ongoing skirmish with foreign investors and the expiry of the April derivative contracts took stock prices lower last week. It was the FOMC meeting that dictated the movement of global markets during this period. Investors were nervous ahead of the meeting, but the Fed dropping all references to time in its policy statement lent hope that a June rate hike had probably been staved off to September or later.
Though there was gloom in global markets for most part of last week, the US markets recovered smartly on Friday as many traders holding short positions seem to have booked profits. Bargain hunting also appears to have emerged, given that earnings of S&P companies have not been as dismal as expected earlier.
Investors will turn their attention to corporate earnings in the absence of any other trigger in the near term. Progress of the monsoon, the FPIs’ ongoing tussle with the Income Tax Department and the rupee will be other interesting sidelights this week.
Sensex (27,011.3)
The Sensex continued sliding and closed below its 200-DMA last week.
The week ahead: The deterioration in the momentum indicators on the weekly chart is a cause for worry. The price rate of change oscillator in the weekly chart is at a level last seen in May 2012. It also needs to be seen if the index is able to move above the 200-day moving average at 27,506 in the week ahead. Next short-term resistances are at 27,760 and 28,280.
If any rally fizzles out under 27,760, it will imply that the index is heading towards 26,776, 26,469 and 26,317.
Medium-term trend: It is obvious that a medium-term downtrend is currently in progress. The third leg of the down-move from the 30,024 peak gives us the next targets of 26,317 and 25,257.
If we consider the retracement targets for the move from August 2013, we get supports at 26,200 and then at 25,215.
If we converge the two, we get the first target at around 26,200. Further decline will pull the index to 25,200 levels.
The bearishness will be mitigated if the index records an emphatic close above 27,500.
Nifty (8,181.5)
The Nifty too has been slipping and sliding over the last week.
The week ahead: The index has closed well below its 200-DMA last week. This is the first hurdle that traders should watch out for.
There is a possibility of a rebound next week that will take the index higher to 8,418 or 8,584. If the rally fizzles out under 8,418, it will imply that bears continue to have the upper hand. In such an event, fresh short positions can be initiated. Downward targets will then be 8,077, 8,065 and 7,961.
In other words, watch out for some struggle around the 8,000 level, if the decline continues.
Medium-term trend: It is now obvious that the index is correcting the entire move that began from the August 2013 lows. If we extrapolate the move that began at the 9,119-peak, we get the targets of 7,994 and then 7,670.
Retracement of waves and sub-waves since 2013 also gives us supports at around 7,900 and then 7,600. The medium-term view will turn positive only on a strong close above 8,740.
Global cues
With the first four months of 2015 behind us, global equity markets do not have much to show by way of returns. The top performing index in this period was Venezuela’s benchmark that gained 49.4 per cent. Shanghai Composite, the cynosure of all investors’ eyes so far this year, is up 37 per cent. European indices such as FTSE, CAC and DAX have gained between 7 to 12 per cent thanks to a weak Euro.
The US indices have put up an indifferent performance with the S&P 500 gaining 2.4 per cent and the Dow 1.1 per cent.
The Indian market has been one of the worst performers in this period with the Sensex losing 2.4 per cent between January and April.
Most global indices did not lose much ground in the week that went by. The CBOE volatility index continues to trade at around 12, reflecting investor complacency.
The Dow continued moving in a narrow trading range that has kept it shackled since the beginning of March. Targets on a break above 18,300 are 18,547 and 19,025. Near-term view will get negated only on a close below 17,500.
Surprisingly, many of the Asian emerging markets, such as Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippines and Thailand recorded a sell-off last week.
Indices have breached their long-term average. But buying can occur at lower levels.