Investors looking at the stock market right now are finding it difficult to determine the direction of the major trend. We have seen several days where the market closed weak after showing a large gain at the open -- a sign of weakness. In addition, there are bearish momentum divergences building in stocks.
Charts of the major stock market averages can be interpreted as either bullish or bearish, but there is at least one market giving an unambiguous "buy" signal, so investors can focus on that while stocks work on developing a trend.
One indicator that I like to use is the little-known Momentum of Comparative Strength (MoCS). This indicator converts relative strength (RS) to a MACD-style indicator. Just like MACD, MoCS can be drawn as a histogram or as two lines with one line being the raw indicator and the second one being a moving average of the indicator. The two-line method offers more trading signals, but the histogram offers highly reliable signals. MoCS makes RS signals more precise and easier to spot. This indicator often allows traders to get in as a trend is just getting under way.
To picture RS, you can think of a golf ball being hit off the tee. At first, the ball rises very quickly. If we measured its RS (the change in the speed of the ball), then we would find that RS accelerates as the ball rises. Soon, the ball levels off and so does the RS as the ball heads toward the hole. As the ball turns downward, RS will begins to fall quickly. If we were trading a golf ball, then we would want to buy shortly after the ball began moving off the tee and sell when the ball starts falling toward the ground. MoCS is an indicator that creates that kind of picture of RS on a chart.
Using just MoCS buy signals, you would buy when the momentum of the price change is accelerating and sell when the RS turns down. This simple indicator would have delivered 71% accuracy on the daily charts of SPDR Gold Shares (NYSE: GLD) and 100% winners on the weekly chart of that ETF. Right now, we have already seen the daily signal and are setting up a weekly "buy" signal.
We have only seen four previous weekly "buy" signals in GLD and all were profitable with an average gain of 13.8% and lasted an average of 29 weeks. There have been 31 daily signals and 71% of those trades were profitable. The average gain was 13.2% in about six weeks.
SLV has offered significantly larger gains with winning percentages that are similar to GLD. "Buy" signals in SLV have delivered average gains of more than 34% in both time frames.
Mining stocks look like the metals. Global X Silver Miners (NYSE: SIL) has signaled buys in both time frames. Market Vectors Gold Miners (NYSE: GDX) and Market Vectors Junior Gold Miners (NYSE: GDXJ) mirror gold and are close to a "buy" on weekly charts after signaling a "buy" on the daily charts. We would expect to see all of these charts showing similar signals if a bull market in precious metals is just beginning.
Investors should be able to profit from gold or silver, and buying metals or miners should be profitable. I continue to believe that the best pick will be SIL.
MoCS is signaling a "buy" and RS is at 100. The price pattern shown on the chart of this ETF points to a potential gain of more than 30%, and it is one of the strongest possible trades right now.