Is it time for a new high?  Or has the market move reached a natural top?

When I consider the next possible move in the market, there are a lot of inputs to consider.  Given the uncertainty in the market, I discussed a safer play for the bull last week via AAPL.  Let’s review that setup and see if it can help give insight to the next potential move I’m looking for:

AAPL spiked yesterday on their WWDC news regarding their AI features coming soon.  With AI being a major talking point just about everywhere, AAPL is illustrating that they, too, are planning to be aggressively involved in AI (no surprise) and the market took a liking to the way they’re planning to incorporate it into future products.  As a result, a major rally on Tuesday supported my bullish thesis presented last week.

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But is that meant to continue?  Perhaps.  Perhaps not.  I’d like to consider another potentially safer play now given the continued chop in the market.  For this, I’ll look back at the oil market:

As we can see in USO, oil prices are looking to form a bottom and recover after dropping on OPEC+ news from the beginning of the month.  However, since the news came out, oil prices have slowly risen back to pre-announcement levels.  So, what does this mean for me?  How can I find a trade from it?

First, I’ll look at a chart of energy companies via the ETF XLE:

XLE has started to recover and appears to have upside to the $94 range in making up for the recovery in oil prices, which isn’t a bad trade.  But, perhaps more exciting is to dive into an individual name within the sector, like COP:

ConocoPhillips has just started to recover after a major downtrend that began in April.  For most of April and all of May, the 10-Day Moving Average provided resistance the whole way down.  But, yesterday’s close is within pennies of that level and could be an indication of the end of the downtrend.  I can easily see a recovery to $120-$125 for COP, which could be favorably leveraged with options given that options are priced at very close to 5-year+ lows in implied volatility.  If I can leverage a potential turn around in a bearish stock with options priced for cheap leverage, that’s a winning combination for me!

If you want to know more about options and how these technical signals can be leveraged in various underlying stocks, make sure you check out my Outlier Watch List, where I give a long list of stocks I’m considering for bullish and bearish entries via options.

And as always, please go to to review how I traditionally apply technical signals, volatility analysis, and probability analysis to my options trades.  And if you have any questions, never hesitate to reach out.

Keith Harwood