September E-mini S&P 500 Index futures posted a lower close and inside move on Friday. The chart pattern suggests investor indecision and impending volatility. Traders are a little mixed up about how to continue to play the market at current price levels. The bullish traders like the new stimulus coming into the markets. The bearish traders believe stocks are overpriced, given the weakening economy.
Retail sales for July came in unchanged, with economists expecting a 0.4 percent increase. Meanwhile, the July reading of the producer price index showed a decline of 0.4 percent, as economists forecast a 0.1 percent gain.
The immediate reaction to the retail sales number was one of concern because it indicated the economy is slowing during the third quarter. According to some traders, the retail sales data is the true reflection of the consumer spending and the July number suggested consumption is very slow.
Technically, the main trend is still up according to the daily swing chart. The trend will turn down on a trade through 2141.50. Momentum will turn down if sellers take out an uptrending angle at 2177.50.
Based on the close at 2180.25, the nearest upside target is last week’s high at 2185.25. Taking out this level will signal a resumption of the uptrend, however, the index will still be vulnerable to a closing price reversal top so don’t just buy the breakout and close your eyes.
The nearest downside targets are a pair of uptrending angles at 2177.75 and 2177.50. The daily chart starts to open up under this angle with the next major targets the short-term 50% level at 2163.25, an uptrending angle at 2159.50 and the short-term Fibonacci level at 2158.25.
Look for the upside bias to continue on a sustained move over 2185.25 and the bias to shift to the downside on a sustained move under 2177.50.
The angle at 2177.50 is most important today because if it fails the market could start a steep correction into at least 2163.25.