Friday’s Panic in the S&P 500 & Gold Futures – J.W. Jones

Posted on January 31, 2011

Mr. Market has thrown traders a few curve balls lately as precious metals and crude oil have been selling off while the U.S. Dollar Index futures were consolidating. Additionally, the volatility index has been very choppy and was indicating that we could be seeing a potential change in the underlying trend with regards to future price action. In previous articles that I have proffered, I was warning about a likely correction in gold and equities as prices were extremely overbought and both asset classes were due for pullbacks.

Precious metals have been selling off for much of the month of January while equities worked their way higher as technology stocks continued to outperform. Today we are seeing major selling in equities while gold, oil futures, and Dollar Index futures rally. What is Mr. Market trying to tell us? Why are the U.S. Dollar Index futures rallying with gold and oil simultaneously? However, the most important question that most traders want an answer to is whether this is a top in equities or if we are just going to have a mild correction and power higher? Risk is excruciatingly high and Friday’s price action appears to be extremely emotional. I am watching to see if we get the Friday afternoon grind higher in equities that generally is accompanied by light volume. If equity prices are held down today, we may see lower prices in the not-so-distant future. The daily chart of the S&P 500 E-Mini futures contract listed below illustrates the key price levels that traders are likely watching closely: