Stocks Plunge With A Possibility That The Worst Is Yet To Come
The S&P 500 fell by almost 8% on March 9, and the lifelines are running thin, with the market pricing in earnings contractions.

Stocks Plunge With A Possibility That The Worst Is Yet To Come

MARCH 9, 2020





Well stocks got crushed today, with the S&P 500 falling by 7.7% to 2,736. At this point, the S&P 500 is running out of lifelines on the technical side. Once this level around 2,730 goes, it gets even worse, with the next significant level down around the 2,634.

The relative strength index failed to make a new low and could be the first signal of a reversal of trend. But that might not be for a while.

The VIX rose to a crazy level today at 62.1 and closed below 54.5. But again, these are very high levels of fear in the market.

The put to call ratio rose to 2018 low levels

The Advance/Decline ratio was, well, you can see how low it was.

On a fundamental basis, if we assume no earnings, but a 5% contraction in earnings. The S&P 500 would have earnings per share of about $149 in 2020, and assuming a rebound of earnings in 2021 by 10% to around $164, at 16 times earnings, the S&P 500 is worth about 2,650.

Do I think we are going to have an earnings contraction? At this point, the evidence would not support that. GDPNow is forecasting growth of 3.1% for the first quarter, and it is already March 9. Could it fall considerably, sure. But other than hearing about work trips being canceled from friends and family, the stores are still packed, and schools are open. Could it get worse, I guess so. I don’t know.

If you want to get all doomsday, the S&P 500 could even be heading back to the December 2018 low around 2,330. It could certainly make for a big-time double bottom. But still, I’d rather not go through that experience. It would amount to a 31% decline for index from the top.

If we fell to that level of 2,330, at a PE of 16, the S&P 500 would be pricing in earnings for 2021 of $145. Currently, my model is estimating earnings for 2021 of $190. That is a drop of 23%.

Boeing (BA)
Boeing fell sharply today, and $213 is the next level, where it fills a gap. After that, maybe it finds some support at around $197.

Cisco (CSCO)

Cisco is another stock looking to fill a lower around $35.

Microsoft (MSFT)

Microsoft could fall to around $142.

Bank of America (BAC)

Bank of America needs to stop falling here around $22, or it could fall back to $18.25

Micron (MU) 

So much for Micron, not even it could survive the day, and now finds itself on support at $45.50, with the potential to go to $42.

Anyway, I have nothing left for you… I’m sorry. 


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