A very serious question. Trendlines, support lines, and the next week or two are very important, as are stop losses.
Barron's: Are Energy Stocks Out of Energy?
THE AMAZING RUN IN THE ENERGY SECTOR has hit a ceiling. While the much-ballyhooed $100 per barrel price for oil is very near, it looks as if it is going to have to wait just a while as the market shakes out some of its excesses.
The questions now are, "How far down can the ETF fall?" and "Is the energy bull market over?"
The answer to the latter question is "no." The long-term trend is still very much in place and the trendline that defines it can help us answer the former question. A correction of another five or six points would place the ETF squarely on that trendline, as well as on key chart support from last summer. In other words, a drop to the mid to high 60s should be viewed as a buying opportunity at this time.
If we make the fundamental assumption that energy demand is not going away and the technical assumption that long-term trends are still intact then we have a sector to watch for bargains in the near future. The only caveat is that energy stocks are still stocks and will be affected by the major trend in the stock market. If you don't think the market is heading into a bear then energy stocks should provide opportunity soon.
CNBC: Commodities Bubble?
Louise Yamada, Louise Yamada Technical Research Advisors.
We think that commodities are still in structural bull markets, so, I would say correction at this point, because the overall market has been looking like it's wanting to correct.
On the bear case, Jim Melcher, up 175% this year on bets against subprime and housing:
NY Sun: Talk of Worst Recession Since the 1930s.
Mr. Melcher, a market bear, had some pretty discouraging words. "What I think is not good for the country, but good for me." he says. His basic advice to the country's roughly 80 million stock players: Run for the hills — the worst is far from over. An investor's stock portfolio now, he believes, should be only about half of what it might normally be.
With the housing market in a state of collapse — and he says he believes it is far from over — Mr. Melcher argues that average homeowners will not be able to withstand the kind of recession he sees, given the added burdens of rising energy and food costs, and continued deterioration in the credit markets.
Asked how he could conceivably give credibility to such an ominous forecast, Mr. Melcher observes: "I've never seen a market with more risk and what's significant is that risk is not yet priced in."
Given his grim expectations, he says there is no equity market in the world he would play right now. "When the American market goes down, other equity markets around the world should follow," he says.
As of now, his portfolio is pretty much devoid of stocks, save for an exchange-traded fund focused on leading companies in oil services, which he regards as an ongoing growth industry. The ETF, the Oil Services Holders Trust, trades on the American Stock Exchange under the symbol OIH. Although enthusiastic about the industry's growth prospects, Mr. Melcher says he would be reluctant to recommend oil services stock because he believes the price of oil could easily drop 50% in the recession he envisions.