The major market averages once again closed mixed, with the S&P 500 and the Dow down -.24% and -.21%, respectively, on higher volume. The NASDAQ closed roughly near breakeven. The higher volume comparison came after Monday's low volume due to the Veteran's Day holiday. While this marked another distribution day for the S&P 500 and Dow indexes, the major averages have been trading more or less sideways over the last couple of weeks as little progress is made in either direction. However, futures are down sharply this morning as a result of weak Asian and European markets after Chinese officials were unable to establish a clear policy direction that would move to curb the state dominance of the economy while being vague over financial reform. It remains to be seen how this plays out and whether it leads to lower lows in the indexes.
With questionable action in some leading names, investors should continue to heed their stops and take action as necessary on a stock by stock basis. While there have been areas of the market that have been strong, such as names like GOGO and the 3-D printing stocks, breadth has remained stagnant as the advance/decline lines for both the NYSE and the NASDAQ have been moving downward even as the indexes move higher.
Precious metals continue their downtrends, though with all major central banks printing money, it would not be surprising to see gold and silver trace out significant bottoms in the coming weeks. Keep in mind these metals have many cross currents that affect their prices over the shorter term. Currently, however, there are no actionable buy points in either silver or gold, and a clear change of trend cannot be determined until we begin to see more positive price action materialize.