It's Friday. It's ugly. It is what it is. This is probably a day where, if you are long, you are re-evaluating positions, so I'll get right to the point here. I'm still with energy and natural gas (yes really, natty gas) is looking like an opportunity. This opportunity seems focused on the short-term, but there is longer term potential as well.
The exact pattern we are seeing right now in the technicals has been seen twice in the recent past. In both October 2014 and February 2015 we witnessed precisely the same multi-faceted setup. I've outlined the pattern via two horizontal blue dotted lines. While the width is slightly different in late October everything else is the same. First, we see a bearish vortex indicator, but one where the bullish push (green line) is starting to begin as the bearishness weakness. Second, we see a relative strength index (RSI), which was in bearish territory, rising into the midline (50). Third, there was a slow stochastics with the %K line in oversold territory followed by a sharp vertical move after crossing over in bullish fashion. The last two times, we saw the price of natural gas rise to at least meet price resistance. Currently, that would run us to $2.85, or a 6.3% higher. This would be a similar move to what happened in February and a much smaller move than last October.
I'm not a huge fan of natural gas ETFs, but I can understand using one here to get long exposure for the short term since this move should occur within the next two weeks. I'd rather take some stakes in names such as Chesapeake Energy (CHK), Ultra Petroleum (UPL) or Southwestern Energy (SWN) with an additional small position in the United States Natural Gas ETF (UNG). I would view the company positions as swing positions with the idea of grabbing some profits if natural gas makes a move to $2.85. I would also sell UNG fully at $2.85.
There is the potential for a much bigger move if natural gas breaks over $2.85. I would then target $3.10 with a remote shot at $3.30, although I view it as unlikely. Any close under $2.45 and a whoosh lower sets up, so that's my stop, and I would revisit the whoosh lower for a look at another long entry. A tough market today, but there are a few opportunities out there for traders not worried about the Monday open and looking beyond it.