It may not feel like it right now, but something wonderful came out of Wednesday's trading session -- namely, a break from economic data.
With yesterday's Fed meeting behind us, we don't need to fret over another interest hike until Feb. 1. Aside from the December employment report scheduled for release on Jan. 6, we won't see the December Consumer Price Index (inflation) figures for nearly a month. I don't know if the lack of inflation and interest rate data will provide the bulls with the cover they need to bid prices higher into year-end. Still, with a few weeks until we start thinking about the December jobs data and another inflation report, we could return to more normal trading conditions.
Despite this week's volatility, Invesco QQQ Trust (QQQ) and SPDR S&P 500 ETF (SPY) traders are still navigating the same range. We're still spending most of our time between $290 and $280 on QQQ and between $390 and the low-$400s on SPY. Unless you're willing to give the bulls the benefit of the doubt on a breakout, which I am not, your best bet is to play the range, using a close under $377 or $378 as your stop on QQQ and a close under $385 as your stop on the SPY.
On the sector and individual stock front, if you aren't watching the solar stocks, a handful of names in the space continue to consolidate prior gains. Large-cap names such as First Solar (FSLR) , Enphase Energy (ENPH) and SolarEdge Technologies (SEDG) are holding above short and intermediate timeframe moving averages and look bullish.
On the smaller cap side, companies such as Maxeon Solar (MAXN) and Array Technologies (ARRY) look ready to move higher. Just note that names traders used to favor in the space, such as Canadian Solar (CSIQ) , Jinko Solar (JKS) and Sunrun (RUN) , continue to need help finding their mojo. The bottom line is I like the solar sector, but I recommend sticking to the leaders and avoiding the laggards.