Today was an interesting day for the benchmark indices. The Dow and S&P 500 rose higher for the first part of the day, only to reverse course around mid-afternoon and finish 0.7% and 0.6% lower for the day respectively. The official cause of the late session selloff was news that a Syrian fighter jet struck targets in western Iraq.
There is no doubt that the situation in Iraq is very unsettling and many investors are using this as an excuse to lock in gains, particularly in the energy sector. Even accounting for the latest pullback, this sector has outpaced the broader market considerably in recent months. Energy stocks are up over 13.4% for the quarter, compared with the S&P 500’s 5% run.
And as I mentioned last week, the emerging instability in Iraq and Syria can actually be a boon for certain energy plays. It all boils down to where to look. In the coming weeks I’ll keep an eye out for such opportunities and post them to this blog and my newsletter advisory services. The fact is that with the Fourth of July holiday less than two weeks away, we should continue to see the markets climb higher, as investors traditionally cheer up heading into the holidays. After that, second-quarter earnings season will become the primary focus and positive sales and earnings reports will continue to lift the stock market in July.
So if you’re really looking to take profits on any of your current positions, you’ll want to make sure that you’re only selling stocks that have become more volatile of late. You can do this at any time using my Portfolio Grader tool, and to get you started here’s a list of 17 big-name blue chips that should be sold right away:
|Symbol||Company Name||Quantitative Grade||Fundamental Grade||Total Grade|
|CNHI||CNH Industrial NV||F||D||D|
|CS||Credit Suisse Group||D||D||D|
|DB||Deutsche Bank AG||F||D||F|
|GM||General Motors Company||F||D||F|
|ISRG||Intuitive Surgical, Inc.||F||D||F|