Is This Market Dip A Buying Opportunity?

Includes: QQQ, SPY, XHB
by: Gold Digger

The short answer is: Yes. Any weakness in the market is a buying opportunity today. The market sell-off on Wednesday was a result of only two factors: 1) Bernanke saying that bond purchases can be slowed 2) Fed minutes showing that participants are talking about scaling back the bond purchases. Point 1 above is an outcome of point 2, and not vice-versa. That is, Bernanke is still as dovish as he has always been. In fact, for most of his testimony he was focused on affirming that bond purchases have been working for the economy and he does not want to scale back anytime soon.

And here is a finer point from both Bernanke's testimony and Fed statement from last month: The Fed is still keeping itself fully engaged in that if it sees any weakness then it will increase the bond purchases again.

So this market sell-off is really a false alarm, and more of a pause than anything bigger. The way the Fed program has been working so far is by inducing the prices of all assets using cheap money. It has never mended the real economic weakness and employment conditions. Any improvement in recent employment has come from the pickup in construction spending (look at the performance of construction and home builder indexes ITB, XHB). Construction spending, in turn, has been spurred by low interest rates (treasury bond indexes IEF, IEI).

So Bernanke is right - anytime the Fed tries to slowdown the bond purchases, the economy will revert back to its weaker conditions. That will give the Fed the room to come back again next month and reinstate the bond purchases to previous levels. Or in fact, it may provide Fed doves more fodder to even increase the pace of bond buying.

Essentially, advice for the retail investors is to stay invested and buy on any dips. Another supporting factor for buying on the dip is that so many hedge funds are underperforming S&P 500 this year, so they would like to boost their performance if S&P 500 goes down by doing exactly what they were not doing so far - buy S&P 500 stocks (SPX, SPY).

This market has strong cushions in place to move higher. Retail investors should not panic and take advantage of any pause in market uptrend to build their portfolio using S&P 500 (SPX, SPY) and Nasdaq 100 stocks (NASDAQ:QQQ).

Disclosure: I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, but may initiate a long position in XHB over the next 72 hours. I wrote this article myself, and it expresses my own opinions. I am not receiving compensation for it (other than from Seeking Alpha). I have no business relationship with any company whose stock is mentioned in this article.

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