Stocks Up In Higher Trade As Market Tries To Firm Up

By Paul Whitfield, Investor’s Business Daily

Stocks popped higher in rising volume Tuesday, as the major indexes pushed further above their once-problematic 50-day moving averages.

The Nasdaq rose 1.5%, the S&P 500 1.15% and the Dow Jones industrial average 0.9%. Volume was up on both major exchanges.

Dow component Caterpillar (CAT) advanced for an eighth session in a row, gaining 1% in below-average volume. The stock is trying to regain its 200-day line, which crossed above the 50-day line in June.

Four stocks were up for every stock that was down on the 30-stock Dow.

Top-rated stocks were showing strong action.

Many struck new 52-week highs in strong volume. They include 3D Systems (DDD), a maker of 3D printers, which rose 6% in heavy volume; and storage software maker CommVault Systems (CVLT), which popped 3% in fast trade.

On the downside, firearms makers continued to take a pounding. Sturm Ruger (RGR) and Smith & Wesson (SWHC) fell 8% and 11%, respectively. In the wake of the Dec. 14 shootings at a school in Connecticut, California state Treasurer Bill Lockyer said he will propose that the state’s public pension funds sell off investments in firearms stocks that make firearms that are prohibited in California.

Sturm Ruger and Smith & Wesson began falling before the latest anti-gun reactions. The stocks, though, illustrate the advantages of sell rules and don’t-buy rules. Sturm Ruger had broken out of a fourth-stage base, which is too late to buy. Smith & Wesson broke out of a third-stage pattern, which also is late. Smith & Wesson triggered the 8% sell rule in the afternoon of the same day of its morning breakout.

Regardless of the reasons for the stock’s current declines, the rules offered protection.


Stocks Pop In Higher Volume As Dollar Weakens

By Paul Whitfield, Investor’s Business Daily

Stocks advanced in rising volume Monday as the U.S. dollar weakened.

The Nasdaq and the S&P 500 posted gains of 1.3% and 1.2% respectively, while the NYSE composite added 0.9%. The Dow Jones industrial average tacked on 0.8%.

Volume rose on both major exchanges, according to preliminary data.

On the S&P 100, an index for big and well-established companies, Wells Fargo (WFC) led the pack with a pop of almost 4%. The stock is now only 6% off its 52-week high. Wells Fargo has a respectable Composite Rating of 82, putting it above more than eight of every 10 stocks in IBD’s database.

Two top-rated stocks broke out in strong volume — SodaStream (SODA) and Tata Motors (TTM).

On the downside, firearms maker Sturm Ruger (RGR) dropped 4% in more than triple its usual volume. Outdoor equipment retailer Cabela’s (CAB) fell 6% in strong volume.

In other news, India’s government lowered its growth estimate for 2012-13 from 7.6% to a range of 5.7% to 5.9%.

Stocks Fall In Lighter Trade; Nasdaq Breaks Support Levels

By Vincent Mao, Investor’s Business Daily

Stocks fell Friday, as ongoing worries over the fiscal cliff trumped better-than-expected data at home and overseas. Equities also ended lower on the week.

Hurt by Apple (AAPL), the Nasdaq shed 0.7% and ended below its 50-day and 200-day lines, as well as under the psychological 3000 level. The S&P 500 lost 0.4% and the Dow Jones industrial average fell 0.3%.

Volume fell across the board, according to preliminary data.

For the week, the S&P 500 fell 0.3% and the Nasdaq fell 0.2%. The Dow Jones industrial average slipped 0.1%.

Industrial production rose 1.1% in November, the Federal Reserve reported Friday, a reversal from October’s downwardly revised 0.7% decline. It was the gauge’s biggest jump in two years. Economists had projected a 0.3% gain. Auto manufacturing led the increase, surging 4.5% for the month.

Industrial capacity utilization notched up to 78.4%, above views for 78% and the highest number since July.

Big news was reported from China: The HSBC purchasing managers index climbed to 50.9 in December, its highest level in 14 months and slightly above the 50.8 reading expected by economists, according to a Bloomberg poll. November’s 50.5 reading was the PMI’s first reading above the boom-bust 50 mark in 13 months.

Among IBD 50 stocks, Sturm Ruger (RGR) tumbled 5% in heavy trading and breached its 50-day moving average. It also closed 6% below a 48.16 buy point from a fourth-stage base.

Apple gapped down and slumped 4% in fast trade after UBS and Jefferies downgraded the stock on signs that iPhone and iPad shipments will trail expectations in the March-ended quarter. Jefferies analyst Peter Misek said excess inventory has prompted Apple to cut orders to suppliers and that iPhone 5 sales got off to a slow start in their China debut Friday.

AVG Technologies (AVG) bolted 8% in massive volume, breaking out of a base with resistance around 14. The developer of network security software announced a deal with Yahoo (YHOO) late Thursday to provide the Internet pioneer with technology to scan links for security threats.

AVG’s Relative Strength line is soaring and its B+ Accumulation-Distribution Rating indicates that institutional investors are net buyers of the shares. AVG went public in February.

The Empire manufacturing index will be out Monday. There are no notable highly rated companies slated to report quarterly earnings Monday.