The market suffered some mild profit-taking on Monday following strong holiday trading. There was likely some inclination to lock in gains on the last day of November but the pressure didn't last for long as stocks are indicated to open strongly once again.
There are several positives all working together that are keeping the market running.
The first and most powerful is that market players are looking ahead to an effective vaccine and a return to normalcy. Although the headlines are full of news about an increase in Covid cases and various economic lockdowns, it is not having any major negative impact on the market's mood. The news media even seems frustrated at times that worries aren't being taken more seriously but the market and many people are ready to move on and are preparing for more normal circumstances in a couple of months.
Another positive in play is very strong stock-picking. Market players are not just generally bullish about the indices, they are embracing a variety of individual stocks and keep looking for the next set of big movers. SPACs have been on fire with new names popping each day. Electric vehicles and batteries, cannabis, bitcoin-related stocks, China names, and a variety of other stocks are enticing traders.
Even bitcoin (GBTC) is helping to cultivate a positive mood as it jumped sharply to new highs after a brief pullback. When market players are willing to speculate in an asset class that has no clear intrinsic value they are also likely to be willing to jump into higher-risk speculative stocks.
The third issue that is benefiting the market is good old-fashioned momentum. The indices are hitting new highs and even though there is some rotation back and forth between "growth" and "value" the trend favors the bulls and they are finding reasons to stick with it.
If you are looking for some reasons to be bearish you might argue that some of the action is frothy and that is a contrary indicator. However, trying to time when that might matter is nearly impossible. Overall, valuations are not terrible, charts look pretty good and the price action is positive.
The easy thing to do is to look for reasons why this sort of action won't persist. The hard thing is to keep finding ways to benefit.
I'll continue to hunt for news buys while protecting some sizable profits that have piled up but I see no reason to start anticipating difficulties until something changes.