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NYSE Percent of Stocks Above 50-Day Average Nears November High

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A lot of attention is now being paid to stocks testing or exceeding their moving average lines. My February 20 message had a headline suggesting that the percent of NYSE stocks trading above their 50- and 200-day moving averages might be bottoming. Let's take another look. The blue line in Chart 1 shows the % of NYSE stocks above their 50-day lines. Since February 20, that line has nearly doubled from 38% to 73%. That reflects the short-term improvement that's taken place over the last month in major stock indexes. That line, however, is nearing an important test of its early November peak at 74%. What it does near that resistance barrier will help determine if the short-term rally has more staying power. Chart 2 shows the % of NYSE stocks over their 200-day lines. It has risen from 23% to 34% since we last looked at it. That means that roughly a third of big board stocks are back in uptrends. While that's encouraging, it's not conclusive enough to signal a major bottom. For that to happen, the red line would have to clear its fourth quarter high at 41%. We'll be watching.

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John Murphy
About the author: is the Chief Technical Analyst at StockCharts.com, an renowned author in the investment field and a former technical analyst for CNBC. With over 40 years of market experience, he is the author of numerous popular works including Technical Analysis of the Financial Markets and Trading with Intermarket Analysis. John's timely market commentary and expert analysis is available exclusively for StockCharts Members through his Market Message blog. Learn More
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