Thursday, May 17, 2012 Stocks have come under pressure lately, after the lack of job creation all but stopped the economic recovery in its tracks. Outside pressure from Europe and China does not make matters any easier, as it appears that the US will have to go it alone. The pop, if any, that Facebook may provide, may be a temporary distraction for traders, but material problems will likely take precedence. Some traders may perhaps wish to consider entering into a bear put spread, -- for example, buying the June E-mini NASDAQ 2450 put and selling the June 2400 put for a debit of 10.00, or $200. The trade risks the initial cost and has a maximum profit of $800 if the June contract settles below 2400 at expiration.Fundamentals The recent slide in equity prices is no surprise to many, given the fact that the US recovery has seemingly ground to a halt and debt worries continue to haunt Greece. Even tech heavyweights like Apple that can seemingly do no wrong have seen their valuations scrutinized and their stock prices plummet. Some traders are now asking themselves whether Facebook, the poster child of Web 2.0, can pump some life into sagging equity prices. There are already many red flags surrounding the company and its advertising revenue stream. If established tech companies with proven revenue streams such as Apple and Google have failed to inspire shareholders, it is difficult to see a company with so many question marks provide a significant boost to the market. That being said, the hype surrounding the company and dumb money buying may provide a short-term sugar high.Technical Notes Turning to the chart, we see the June E-mini NASDAQ breaking support from the relative low close at 2589.50. There is little to no support until the 24.00 level on the downside. Prices also closed below the 100-day moving average, adding to the bearish momentum. The RSI indicator is now at oversold levels, suggesting that prices could see a bit of a technical bounce or stabilization in the near-term. Interestingly, momentum has been relatively flat during the slide in prices. Rob Kurzatkowski, Senior Commodity Analyst
updated May 17, 2012
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