Stock Portfolio & Seasonal MACD Updates: Still On Hold
By: Christopher Mistal
April 11, 2017
As of the yesterday’s close, both the faster moving MACD “Buy” and slower moving MACD “Sell” indicators (at bottom of following charts) applied to DJIA and S&P 500 were negative, but still trending toward reversing the sell signal that has been on the charts since early March. Although DJIA recorded a modest decline today, it’s faster moving MACD “Buy” indicator turned positive today. S&P 500’s faster moving MACD “Buy” indicator would turn positive with a 5.52 point gain tomorrow.
[DJIA Daily Bar Chart]
[S&P 500 Daily Bar Chart]
Continue to hold long positions associated with DJIA’s and S&P 500’s “Best Six Months.” We will issue our Seasonal MACD Sell signal when corresponding MACD Sell indicators applied to DJIA and S&P 500 both crossover and issue a new sell.
Portfolio Updates
In the four and a half weeks since last update, S&P 500 was 0.2% lower while Russell 2000 was up 0.1% as of yesterday’s close. The Almanac Investor Stock Portfolio’s blend of cash and long positions resulted in a 0.4% overall gain over the same time period. Our Large-Cap portfolio performed best, up 1.3%. Small-Caps were second best, gaining 0.4% while Mid-Caps slipped 0.2% (the only red blemish in the entire portfolio.
Almanac Investor Large-Caps were supported by a 7.9% gain by Arista Networks (ANET). Shares of ANET traded at new all-time highs as recently as last Thursday, April 6. Although there has been little response in share price yet, this weekend’s favorable announcement from U.S. Customs (can once again import finished product into the U.S.) is expected to have a positive impact on this quarter’s earnings. ANET is on Hold.
Bright spots in the Mid-Cap portfolio include Scotts Miracle-Gro (SMG) and Sabra Healthcare REIT (SBRA). Both enjoyed solid gains over the last month, but their strength was insufficient to overcome weakness in Ameris Bancorp (ABCB) and Western Alliance (WAL). Seasonal weakness in bank stocks may be beginning early this year. Based upon the KBW NASDAQ Bank Index (BKX), the sector generally enjoys strength until the beginning of May (page 94 STA 17). The associated trade in the ETF Portfolio, SPDR Financials (XLF) was closed out at its auto-sell price of $23.53 back in early December for a 23.5% gain. The sector has been essentially flat since then and XLF is currently trading just under our December exit price.
Once again this update, the Small-Cap portion of the portfolio owes much of its performance to Pressure Biosciences (PBIO). Last update, it appeared PBIO had adequate momentum to carry it to a double and beyond. PBIO traded above $0.32 for the first time on March 31, triggering standard trading guidelines of selling half the position when it doubles. It has since traded above 0.32 during four of the last seven trading sessions. PBIO is on Hold
The Hersey Company (HSY) and Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory (RMCF) have been treading water over the last four weeks. Falling and/or lower cocoa prices is the underlying basis for being long HSY and RMCF. When the trade was presented in early March, cocoa was in a relentless downtrend, but it did bounce during the second half of March. That bounce appears to have been short-lived and cocoa has rolled over once again. HSY and RMCF are both on Hold.
All other positions, not mentioned above, are currently on Hold. Please refer to the updated portfolio table below for Current Advice about each specific position. Please note that some stop losses have been updated as a result of recent moves.
[Almanac Investor Stock Portfolio – April 10, 2017 Closes]
Disclosure Note: At press time, officers of the Hirsch Organization, or accounts they control held positions in ANET, BUSE, CCS, IESC, MHO and SBRA.