Las Vegas Market Sentiment
By: Jeffrey A. Hirsch
October 20, 2015
The MoneyShow’s Las Vegas Trader’s Expo was held a month earlier this year at Paris Hotel, which was a pleasant change from the usual venue at Caesars Palace. Admittedly, Caesars is a level above Paris in many respects, but I must tell you the schlep from the room to the convention site in Caesars is a mile or 2 away. Paris is a more intimate setting and the trip from your hotel room to the presentation ballroom is much more manageable and does not put you in a full lather.
The show has evolved over the years to be less exhibit hall and exhibitor centric and geared more toward speaker presentations and trader and investor education class oriented. My main event was a four-hour paid event Master Class Trading 301: Intensive In-Depth Training for Portfolio Construction Position & Risk Management. But more on that in a moment.
On Wednesday eve for the exhibit hall opening and welcome reception the hall was jammed and jumping – a good sign. This was also the case throughout the event, attendance was solid. My big day was Friday with an 8am educational presentation and the Trading 301 class from noon to 4pm. Though 8am is early in Vegas, folks showed up and I gave them a short and sweet rundown of current “Election Cycle & Best Six Months Trade Setups.
I covered the woeful record of the 7th and 8th years of presidential terms (the 3rd and 4th years of 2-term presidents) and how that is tempering my bullish seasonal and technical outlook along with tepid fundamentals and economic readings and geopolitical concerns. Then we got into the Best Six Months record, recent buy signal and trade setups. I ripped through all our current sector ETF and stock trade ideas.
Between my sessions I set up shop for a couple hours at the Money Show Hub with some brand-new, hot-off-the-press Stock Trader’s Almanac 2016. Since there was no book store there this time, and I know many folks expect to pick up their annual copy there, I figured it would be a nice thing to make available. Subscriber copies are currently in route to our warehouse and I expect to begin shipping them soon.  
What struck me at that moment was that while I was at The Hub that Friday morning, my friend Cindy Faber, instructor for TD Ameritrade, was giving a trade demonstration to a seated group and also broadcasting online, and when she polled the group for bulls and bears not one bull put up their hand. I of course popped my head around the corner and put my bullish hand up, smiled and waved to Cindy and said I’m bullish. 
Such a low number of bulls in the crowd is a rather contrary bullish sentiment reading. In fact there were not many bears either. No one in Cindy’s group put up a bearish hand either. This illustrates to me that investors are rather confused and lack conviction much like the AAII Investor Sentiment chart below with bulls and bears even at about 30%.
S&P 500 versus AAII Sentiment
My long class was attended by a more seasoned crowd and we dug deep into our behind the scenes stock and ETF selection process (the DVD will be available shortly). I could tell this group knew what they were as they responded well to my call for them to participate and help me with the process. This group was equally cautiously bullish as I am and they took home a solid list of attractive undervalued stocks to trade.
I hope all readers have been cautiously getting long again since our buy signal, but remaining vigilant with stops. We are not as bullish as we were last year at this time and have relayed our concerns in previous posts and alerts. We’ll be looking for the major averages to get back above there August 18-19 levels, before the waterfall decline, in conjunction with stronger market internals before getting more bullish. And as I mentioned, next year promises to be difficult for the market.