Further Upticks for Stock Indices

The S&P is probing a resistance in the 1052/1053 area which marks congestion and approximates a trendline off the September highs. Broad-based buying has lifted stocks to a strong start. Healthcare has joined the other major sectors in positive territory, but it continues to lag on a relative basis.

The S&P is probing a resistance in the 1052/1053 area which marks congestion and approximates a trendline off the September highs. Resistance above is in the 1057/1058 zone.

Broad-based buying has lifted stocks to a strong start. Gains are especially strong in the materials sector, which is up 2.4% amid higher commodities and basic materials prices. As such, gold continues to glisten as it sports a 1.6% gain at $1032.80 per ounce, near the record high of $1035 per ounce that it set earlier in pit trade.

Healthcare has joined the other major sectors in positive territory, but it continues to lag on a relative basis. The sector is currently up fractionally as healthcare equipment stocks (-2.3%) and managed care stocks (-0.7%) falter. Healthcare facilities stocks (+1.6%) are providing support, though. Dow +1.1%, Nasdaq +1.1%, S&P 500 +1.2%.

Technicians are watching this area closely to detrmine if there is selling supply that will come in to liquidate stocks ahead of a busy earnings season or if the rally will attempt to take out important resistance and move higher .