The good news was that after a gap down at the open, the indices steadily climbed all day and had a solid close for the first time in October. The bad news is that the very tedious trading-range action continues. The S&P 500 ended close to flat and breadth was solidly negative.
Outperformance by some key names like Microsoft (MSFT) , PayPal (PYPL) , Netflix (NFLX) and Time Warner (TWX) helped keep the mood quite positive, but it just didn't translate into more aggressive buying.
That lack of aggression has been the issue for a while. We have teeter-totter action, with a poor day followed by a good day, and then up and down again. Neither side in the battle is capable of generating any sustained momentum, although there are some individual stocks working, like Facebook (FB) , which I highlighted this week as my top big-cap play. (Facebook is part of TheStreet's Action Alerts PLUS portfolio.)
We have a couple more weeks of earnings and the presidential election is coming up fast, but no news event has been capable of moving this market for long. You really have to wonder what it is going to take for the market to bust out of the trading ranges we have been in since July. One positive is that we are entering the best time of the year seasonally. There have been some good earnings, too, which can help, but we are going to hear endlessly about interest rate hikes in front of the Fed's December meeting. Also look for lots of "click bait" headlines about stocks that will be good plays on the results of the election.
One issue today that received quite a bit of coverage but didn't have much market impact was the cyberattacks that shut down access to many sites, especially on the East Coast. Twitter (TWTR) , Netflix and Amazon (AMZN) were impacted but not their stocks much. (Amazon is part of TheStreet's Growth Seeker portfolio.)
It would be a much more interesting market if a trend would develop, but at least earnings season is moving some stocks and there are some decent charts.
Have a great weekend. I'll see you on Monday.