Fascinating chart from Ron Griess of theChartStore, showing the increase in trading action but with no real forward progress.

Since July 1, the S&P has covered nearly 3,000 points since , and almost 5,000 points since January 1, yet is flat for the year:

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Category: Markets, Technical Analysis, Trading

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10 Responses to “S&P500: Lots of Action, But No Progress”

  1. Global Eyes says:

    Around the corner from the NYSE there’s a guy strumming a guitar. A small crowd gathers. His song ends like this: all that action but not much traction – I’m three thousand points away from satisfaction…

  2. DeDude says:

    3000 point on the S&P !!!!!!!!!!!!!!! ?

  3. rd says:

    The past year has been a massive world-wide game of chicken on bets that central bankers around the world can keep asset values artificially high for both debt and equity. We have moved from real investment philosophies to greater fool stunt car driving as money managers figure they can leap from the moving car before the collision. so far they have unbuckled their seat belts and opened the door a couple of times but have not leaped out.

    The money managers swerve around a lot as theybet on whether or not these guys can avoid a crash or will simply cause a head-on collision. I think the markets have largely given up on the fiscal policy makers and are simply focused on the money printers after the apparent success that Bernanke has had since the trough in early 2009.

  4. wunsacon says:

    Are rating agency oligopolists free of national/political interest(s)? If not, then do they downgrade other nations’ bonds as way to force capital into propping up US bonds? If so, then when does that policy run its course?

  5. wj says:

    That dotted red line certainly looks like a logical place to sell!

  6. DeDude says:

    I guess that we are done with the idea that regular people can make money by long-term investments. You have to be a professional (full-time) trader to make money. Wonder what people will do when they realize that.

  7. bear_in_mind says:

    @DeDude

    I think there’s very little “retail” (i.e. regular people) money left in U.S. stocks for two primary reasons:

    1) I have to believe precious few retail investors held on to their longs through 35-60 percent declines in the Crash of 2000. Those who did emerge relatively unscathed, or back-filled into their positions, would likely have enjoyed another huge plunge in 2009. Thus, it’s hard for me to see how many retail investors haven’t concluded “that’s-all-she-wrote” with exposure to stocks. Adding insult to injury, we mustn’t overlook: negative housing values; removal of mortgage equity loans; persistently high-UE; declining median incomes; and growing CPI/PPI inflation.

    2) The incredible wealth disparity between the 1% (really, it’s the .1%) and the 99% indicates that the median income household couldn’t have had too much of an impact in the market because their wealth ‘footprint’ is relatively SOOOO much smaller. The difference is staggering.

    If my thesis is remotely accurate, much of the retail money has been flushed out, with the 1%’s money remaining in the NYSE/S&P500 because America is the “cleanest dirty shirt” in the world financial system.

    Sure, the institutions (esp. those managing pensions and annuities) will likely experience net withdrawals over the next decade, but I suspect that will be offset by inflows from millionaires and billionaires. I just can’t fathom them cashing-out of this money-making machine, even in retirement. They’ll have more than ample income simply from SPX-based dividends and maturing bonds.

    So maybe, just maybe, the downside NYSE/S&P500 risks from the retirement of the Boomer generation may not be as dire and profound as many feared.

    On the other hand, home values appear to remain on a downward glide path unless there’s a dramatic change in direction of our demographics and median income.

    Cheers,
    B-I-M

  8. DeDude says:

    B-I-M;

    True enough but I wasn’t just thinking real retail investors. A lot of people are in stocks via their 401K, IRA and other defined contribution plans. The main reason they keep a part of that money in stock funds is the presumed higher returns “in the long run”. When I look at the TIAA-CREF funds it is clear that there still is a lot more money in their stock funds than any other asset class. If their savers decide to call BS on the classic “10% per year” sales pitch for stock funds, that will take a big chunk of money out.

  9. NoKidding says:

    What about volume?