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Swing trading stocks and ETFs with a solid approach to technical analysis.

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  • Bullish pattern in iShares Nasdaq Biotech (IBB) - September 13, 2010 0 comments
    Sep 13, 2010 9:02 AM | about stocks: IBB, THD, VPL

    Stocks rallied for a third consecutive day on Friday, but managed to post only modest gains on the day. An early morning gap up and subsequent rally was met by selling pressure at the 11:00 am reversal period, and the indices remained in a tight trading range for the remainder of the day. For a change, the S&P 500 and the Dow Jones Industrial Average exhibited more strength than the mid and small-cap indices. Both the Dow and S&P closed 0.5% higher, while the S&P Mid-Cap 400, the Small-Cap Russell 2000, and Nasdaq Composite each rose only 0.3% on the day. Significant relative weakness in the chip sector was largely responsible for the divergence; the Philadelphia Semiconductor Index ($SOX) fell 1.4%, benefiting our position in ProShares Semiconductor UltraShort (NYSEARCA:SSG).

    Across the board, volume declined on the day. Nasdaq volume was 1% lighter than the previous day's level, while turnover in the NYSE eased 9.2%. Market internals were mixed. Despite the tight trading range, advancing volume outpaced declining volume on the NYSE by approximately 2 to 1. The internals did not bode so well on the Nasdaq, where the ratio of advancing to declining volume was negative 1 to 1.

    The iShares Nasdaq Biotechnology Index Fund (NASDAQ:IBB) appears to be forming a distinct inverse "head and shoulders" pattern. The left shoulder low was set on June 8th, the head on July 1st, and the right shoulder on August the 25th. On Friday, it broke above the 200-period simple moving average on increasing volume. A volume-fueled move above the neckline high of $84.81 would confirm the pattern. The predicted rally, measured from the bottom of the head to the neckline, would suggest an advance to near the March 24th high of $93.53.

    After consolidating in a tight range for the past three days, on stronger than average volume, iShares MSCI Thailand Index Fund (NYSEARCA:THD) may be poised to continue its strong uptrend. A break above the three-day high on increasing volume would trigger a short-term buy signal for this ETF. However, be aware this is a more aggressive play than usual because THD is presently trading well above its 20-day exponential moving average:

    Another Asian play to consider is the Vanguard Pacific Fund (NYSEARCA:VPL), which has been showing relative strength to the market, is trading above the 200-day simple moving average, and is retesting the highs of August 9th. Friday brought a significant increase in volume, relative to the market. Further, VPL has been engaged in a sequence of higher highs and higher lows, dating back to early June. A push above $52.70, with supporting volume, suggests a buy signal for this ETF:

    Open ETF positions:

    Long - DBA, TUR, UUP
    Short (including inversely correlated "short ETFs") - SSG, EPV
    The commentary above is an abbreviated version of a daily ETF trading newsletter, The Wagner Daily. Regular subscribers receive daily updates on all open positions, as well as new ETF trade setups with detailed trigger, stop, and target prices. Intraday Trade Alerts are also sent via e-mail and/or text message, on as-needed basis. For your free 1-month trial to the full version of The Wagner Daily, or to learn about our other services, please visit

    Deron Wagner is the Founder and Head Portfolio Manager of Morpheus Trading Group, a capital management and trader education firm launched in 2001. Wagner is the author of the best-selling book, Trading ETFs: Gaining An Edge With Technical Analysis (Bloomberg Press, August 2008), and also appears in the popular DVD video, Sector Trading Strategies (Marketplace Books, June 2002). He is also co-author of both The Long-Term Day Trader (Career Press, April 2000) and The After-Hours Trader (McGraw Hill, August 2000). Past television appearances include CNBC, ABC, and Yahoo! FinanceVision. Wagner is a frequent guest speaker at various trading and financial conferences around the world, and can be reached by sending e-mail to

    DISCLAIMER: There is a risk for substantial losses trading securities and commodities. This material is for information purposes only and should not be construed as an offer or solicitation of an offer to buy or sell any securities. Morpheus Trading, LLC (hereinafter "The Company") is not a licensed broker, broker-dealer, market maker, investment banker, investment advisor, analyst or underwriter. This discussion contains forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties. A stock's actual results could differ materially from descriptions given. The companies discussed in this report have not approved any statements made by The Company. Please consult a broker or financial planner before purchasing or selling any securities discussed in The Wagner Daily (hereinafter "The Newsletter"). The Company has not been compensated by any of the companies listed herein, or by their affiliates, agents, officers or employees for the preparation and distribution of any materials in The Newsletter. The Company and/or its affiliates, officers, directors and employees may or may not buy, sell or have positions in the securities discussed in The Newsletter and may profit in the event the shares of the companies discussed in The Newsletter rise or fall in value. Past performance never guarantees future results.

    Charts created by TradeStation (

    © 2002-2010 Morpheus Trading, LLC
    Reproduction without permission is strictly prohibited.

    Disclosure: Long DBA, Long TUR, Long UUP, Short SSG, Short EPV
    Stocks: IBB, THD, VPL
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