The Consumer Discretionary SPDR (XLY) and Finance SPDR (XLF) broke down this week to signal a continuation of downtrends that began in July. In other words, the Aug-Oct rally was just a countertrend advance within a larger downtrend. XLF and XLF moved into bear mode when double tops were confirmed with support breaks in July. Both broke their March lows and forged lower lows. The advance over the last nine weeks retraced around 62% of the Jul-Aug decline and both ETFs met resistance near their 40-week moving averages (red arrows). This week's sharp decline ended this countertrend rally and started another leg down. In addition, a lower high formed and this is what downtrend are all about: lower lows and lower highs. The next support levels are around 30.5 for XLF and 34 for XLY. The Finance sector represents the banks, brokers and REITs. The Consumer Discretionary sector is the most economically sensitive. Needless to say, breakdowns in both bode ill for the market overall.

Chip Anderson
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