A Stealth Bear Is Bull

In this week’s Dirty Dozen [CHART PACK] we again lay out the bull case for risk assets over the near-term. We look at stealth bear markets, oversold breadth relative to indices near highs. We talk inflation and tech, look at the statistical returns per market and the current regime. And end with a look at some great chart setups in semis, lumber, corn, and two Ag-related equity names, plus more… 

  • Large swaths of this market have gone through a stealth bear market of sorts over the last few months. Many of the popular growth names were bulldozed while the indices were kept aloft by the megacaps that continue to act as cash-sweep vehicles for every new dollar added to ETF heavy portfolios.

We can see this in the chart below which shows the Nasdaq new highs – lows versus how far the market is off its top. 

Relative lows hit, well, their lows earlier this month. Close to levels that have marked bottoms of past major selloffs. Yet, the Qs only came as far as 7% off their all-time highs before rebounding.

This is most likely a short-term bullish thing as we should see the beaten down group continue to revert upwards, giving a tailwind to breadth and the overall market. 

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  • The R3K is just off its highs but % of stocks > 50dma are coming off deeply oversold levels that typically mark bottoms. Again, I read this as bullish. The path of least resistance is up, my friends… 

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  • What can kill this juggernaut of a rally? Inflation, or at least the belief that inflation will stay well above current expectations. Fidelity put out a decent report analyzing various sector returns in historical inflationary regimes. You can find the link here.

  • We like to start our week with a quick glance at what Market Regimes various markets are in. Collective members can find this tab in our Heads Up Display (HUD). The most profitable regimes for position trading are the Bull Quiet and Blended Bull regimes, which are highlighted in red below. You can read up more on market regimes and SQN here

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  • Semis continue to lead this market. Our SQN Statistics tab analyzes the average forward returns of each market according to where each is in its current regime. The top table shows oil, home builders, semis, and Qs have the best projected 20-day returns out of all markets analyzed.

The below chart shows that the current BullQ regime (blue line) in Semis is progressing along its typical path (green line) and tends to stay in this regime for another 24 days on average before transitioning to BullV or Neutral. Again, you can find this tab in the HUD. 

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  • Speaking of semis, DRAM/NAND producer Micron Technologies (MU) is back nearing all-time highs. I wrote up the secular bull case for MU back in Sep 20’ when it was trading sub $50 a share. You can read that report here

MU spent most of the year in corrective mode following its large bull run in the 2nd half of 20’. Bearish sentiment hit ridiculous extremes over the last few months, helping to cement the bottom on this move. 

The monthly chart below shows the stock is in an accelerating parabola, helped along by improving DRAM pricing. The next measured move target is $124 a share. I expect MU will get there quite fast, which is great for our 2023 DOTM calls.

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  • Lumber’s deep correction following 2020’s monster bull run is officially over. Random length wood is back in a BullQ regime and just pulled back to its midline. Positioning is neutral, seasonality is positive, and the macro fundies remain strong. 

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  • I think one of the main macro themes in 22’ will be a big reversal in the USD. I’ve laid out bearish dollar take here. Most pairs still look weak against USD right now but that may soon change. 

One interesting thing I noticed is that if EUR/USD closes negative on the month, it’ll have put in 5 consecutive monthly bear bars, which is unusual. Now, there are plenty of reasons to be bearish the euro over the short-term (exploding natty prices, Russia amassing troops on Ukraine’s border, Eurovision, etc…). But these deeply oversold levels show a strong bullish bias over the following year. Just something to keep in mind… 

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  • GBP/USD is one USD cross that does look actionable on the long side. GPB/USD has broken up and out of a three-wave down wedge. Speculators are crowded short, our yield spread oscillator has turned up in GBP’s favor, and momentum is lifting up off the basement floor (charts can be found in FX tab in HUD). 

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  • Corn is in a blended bull regime. We got long the other week. The trend is accelerating to the upside. We’ll look to add on pullbacks.

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  • Ags in general are starting to show renewed strength. This should help drive a bid under a few of our portfolio holdings. The Argentinian-based Agtech firm Bioceres Crop Solutions, being one of them. 

I first wrote up the bull case for BIOX back in January when the stock was trading for $6.50. It’s run 150ish% since then and the stock has traded sideways in a tight and healthy sideways consolidation for the last 6-months or so. But it’s now teeing off its 200dma and looks geared up for another run higher. 

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  • The potash producer/stealth oil play (through its large water rights) Intrepid Potash (IPI) also looks set for another leg up. The stock is breaking out from a multi-month coiling wedge. It’s still very cheap and expecting high growth. 

We’ll be adding to our position this week. 

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Disclaimer: All statements are solely opinions and are for educational purposes only.

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