The stock market indices had a sloppy, choppy session and ended mixed at the close.
The day started out with a run up to the upside, and then a sharp pullback. They did not make lower lows on the NDX, while the S&P 500 did. However, the S&P 500 even held support at 1496, and the NDX at 2735. They both rallied sharply midday, testing the highs again on the S&P 500, but not getting through, while the NDX made a nominal, new, 3-day high. In the afternoon, the S&P 500 ran back up to the high after the midafternoon test was successful, but they were unable to get through 1503. That's now a triple top, nearly a quadruple top, in the last couple sessions. Four times they reached the 1503-4 zone. The NDX reached 2751 in the afternoon, not quite the 2753 area from the morning, and then pulled back. In the last hour and the last 10 minutes, in particular, they rolled over a bit to get the Dow and S&P 500 into negative territory.
[Related -Netflix, Inc. (NFLX) Q4 Earnings Preview: What To Watch?]
Net on the day, the Dow was down only 14.05 at 13,881.93, 20 points off the low and about 34 points off the high. The Dow was very narrowly mixed today for the most part. The S&P 500 was down 2.78 at 1500.18, just 3 points off the high and 4 points off the low. The Nasdaq 100 was up 5.70 at 2742.43, 9 points off the high and 7 points off the low.
Advance-declines were 13 to 17 negative on the New York Stock Exchange, and 14 to 10 positive on Nasdaq. Up/down volume was 3 to 2 negative on New York, with total volume of a very light 584 million shares. Nasdaq traded nearly 1.8 billion and had a slight plurality, with a 5 to 3 positive volume ratio.
[Related -Cree, Inc. (CREE) Q2 Earnings Preview: What To Expect?]
It was a very mixed session today. Nasdaq was the strongest due to Apple Inc. (AAPL) being up 9.95 to 449.83, about 31/2 points off its high, but 14 points off its low. It had a big snapback off 435.60.
TheTechTrader.com board, was mixed.Priceline.com Incorporated (PCLN) was down 13.84 to 705.98, Google Inc. (GOOG) lost 2.94 to 750.73, and Amazon.com Inc. (AMZN) down 7.95 to 276.04.
So there was pressure on a lot of the Nasdaq generals today.
Other stocks on the downside included SodaStream International Ltd. (SODA) down 2.27 to 50.96, Pharmacyclics Inc. (PCYC) down 1.61 to 69.89, Research In Motion Limited (RIMM) 1.36 to 16.18, Uni-Pixel, Inc. (UNXL) 1.34 to 13.33, Netflix Inc. (NFLX) 7.45 to 162.11, and Green Mountain Coffee Roasters Inc. (GMCR) 1.05 to 45.26.
Stocks on the upside included Facebook, Inc. (FB) up 93 cents to 32.47, on 59 million shares, and Cree, Inc. (CREE) was up 42 cents to 42.39.
Other gainers of note on our board today included quite a few big percentage gainers. Some of the stocks we traded today were junior biotech stocks that did very well today. Furiex Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (FURX) opened at 31.66 today, ran up to 35.75, and closed 40 cents off the high at 35.34, up 14.10, or 66% on 1.3 million shares, a 2800% increase in volume. Keryx Biopharmaceuticals Inc. (KERX) was up 2.63 to 6.06, or 76.6%, on 67 million shares, a 4500% increase in volume.
RadioShack Corp. (RSH) popped 58 cents to 3.22 to 22%, on 14 million shares. Glu Mobile, Inc. (GLUU) ran up 35 cents to 2.65, or 15%, on 5.7 million shares. Asia Entertainment & Resources Ltd. (AERL) spiked up 50 cents to 4.67, or 12%, on a half million shares.
Dole Food Company Inc. (DOLE) was up 97 cents to 11.12, ACADIA Pharmaceuticals Inc. (ACAD) up 47 cents to 6.66, Georgia Gulf Corp. (GGC) 4.34 to 54.48, and Given Imaging Ltd. (GIVN) 90 cents to 16.80.
Vanda Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (VNDA) was up 1.52 to 24.39, Hess Corporation (HES) up 3.58 to 62.48, Aruba Networks, Inc. (ARUN) 1.03 to 23.70, and CVR Energy, Inc. (CVI) 2.69 to 57.39.
The ProShares Ultra VIX Short-Term Fut ETF (UVXY) jumped 59 cents to 11.15.
Stepping back and reviewing the hourly chart patterns, the indices were very choppy, up in the morning, down midday, back up in the afternoon, and down at the close. It was a mixed close and a choppy way to start the week. We are very worried about, not only the head-and-shoulders pattern that developed on the Nasdaq 100, but the island reversal at that head could be very ominous. We'll have to see if the wedge that's currently in play on the right shoulder breaks or not. If an upside break occurs, all bets are off on a downside move.
Right now, the jury is still out and the trend is undecided. We'll see how it goes on tomorrow.