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Apple, These Top Techs Stood Out In Sell-Off; S&P 500, Dow Jones Futures Fall | Stock News & Stock Market Analysis

Futures for the S&P 500 index, Dow Jones industrial average and Nasdaq 100 were mixed early Thursday morning after the S&P 500 and other major averages sold off on the final day of February. But Apple (AAPL) held near a recent high, Micron Technology (MU) extended its breakout, while Square (SQ) and Applied Materials (AMAT) are just below buy points after recent breakout bids.

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All four stocks outperformed the S&P 500 index, and their relative strength lines show that they’ve been besting the S&P in the past few weeks. You want to see stocks that are truly leading the market.

Square, Applied Materials and Micron Technology have Composite Ratings above 95. The Composite Rating combines several IBD proprietary ratings of fundamental and technical factors. All-time stock winners often have Composite Ratings of at least 95 near the start of their big runs. Apple, for its part, has an 89 Composite Rating.


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S&P 500 index futures fell 0.2% vs. fair value. Dow futures lost 0.2%. Nasdaq 100 futures rose 0.1%.

Apple

Apple fell 0.15% to 178.12 in Wednesday’s stock market trading, after hitting a record 180.61 intraday. The RS line, which tracks a stock vs. the S&P 500 index, is above where it was at the prior stock peak, and is approaching the early November peak. That’s after Apple was a laggard for three months. (The RS line is the blue line in the charts below.)

Apple fell too far during the brief stock market correction for its old buy point to be valid. The current consolidation is a bit too short to create a new entry point. Aggressive investors can find reasons to excuse some of those problems, but they should do so with eyes wide open.

Square

Square tried to break out on Wednesday, briefly clearing a 48.60 cup-with-handle buy point before pulling back to close up 14 cents at 48.05. The RS line continued to climb. Square topped earnings views late Wednesday, but the mobile payments firm gave mixed guidance.

Micron Technology

On Monday, Micron Technology moved above a 47.08 buy point from a shallow double-bottom pattern, though volume was 2% below normal. Micron continued to edge up, advancing 0.5% to 48.81 on Wednesday.

Applied Materials

Applied Materials tried to break out past its own double-bottom pattern on Monday, briefly clearing a 58.83 buy point before settling just below that level. The chip-equipment giant has edged lower the past two sessions, dipping 5 cents to 57.59 on Wednesday.

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