Eoin Treacy's view Despite short-term overbought conditions having developed over the last couple of weeks, the prospects for global stock markets in 2013 continue to improve. While the uncertainty with regard to the fiscal cliff remains a source of potential volatility, anxiety about the Eurozone is receding while the macro outlook for China is improving and the Japanese economy looks set to receive a significant boost from the devaluation of the Yen. Against this background I thought it would be timely to review the Autonomies because they represent a group of companies that are truly global in perspective.
This proxy index of the 66 companies we currently regard as Autonomies can be found in the Chart Library in the Global Stock Indices section. It assumes an equal weighting and is denominated in US Dollars. The Index remains in a consistent medium-term uptrend and a sustained move below the 200-day MA, currently near 5840, would be required to question medium-term scope for additional upside.
In the technology sector Apple continues to range above $500 and will need to hold in this region if the medium-term consolidation hypothesis is to be given the benefit of the doubt and a further test of underlying trading is to be avoided. Google, IBM and Qualcomm continue to find support or at least hold in the region of their respective 200-day MAs. Sustained breaks below them would be required to question medium-term scope for continued upside. Samsung broke out to post new all-time highs last month and while increasingly overbought, a clear downward dynamic would be required to check momentum. LAM Research, Microchip Technology, Microsoft, Intel and HTC have all found at least short-term support and sustained moves below their respective recent lows would be required to question potential for additional upside. Among previous laggards Cisco Systems has had one of the more impressive rallies of late, to post its first higher high in quite some time.
In the pharmaceuticals sector Novo Nordisk, Fresenius SE, Biogen, Merck, Pfizer and Johnson & Johnson remain in consistent medium-term uptrends and found support in the region of their respective 200-day MAs over the last month. Eli Lily, having experienced a sharp decline has found support in the region of the MA but some time is likely required in order to restore confidence. Sanofi broke successfully above €70 three weeks ago but is quite overextended relative to the 200-day MA. A break in the short-term progression of higher reaction lows would suggest more than a temporary pause. Fresenius Medical Care and Bristol Myer Squibb continue to hold below their respective 200-day MAs and will need to sustain rallies back above them to signal returns to medium-term demand dominance.
In the drinks sector Anheuser Busch, Diageo, SAB Miller, Pernod Ricard and Remy Cointreau have all paused and are experiencing relatively steady reversions back towards their means. Heineken broke out to new all time highs in September and continues to hold a progression of higher reaction lows. Coca Cola has held a progression of lower highs since August and will need to find support in the current area if the medium-term uptrend is to remain consistent. PepsiCo has a similar pattern.
In the restaurants sector McDonalds posted a failed downside break last month and has returned to test the region of the 200-day MA. It will need to sustain a move back above the trend mean, currently near $50, to suggest a return to more than temporary demand dominance. Yum Brands posted a large downside weekly key reversal last month and has paused in the region of the 200-day MA. It will need to continue to hold above $60 if the potential for a further test of underlying trading is to be avoided. Starbucks experienced a deep decline from the April high but found support in the region of the 200-day MA and broke out of the short-term range two weeks ago. A sustained move below $50 would now be required to check current scope for additional upside.
In the processed foods and consumer goods sectors, Nestle, Mondelez International, Procter & Gamble, Colgate Palmolive, Kimberly Clark and Uni-Charm have been mostly ranging in a process of mean reversion for the last few months. Sustained moves below their respective 200-day MAs would be required to question medium-term scope for continued upside. Heinz is becoming increasingly overextended relative to the MA, but a break in the progression of higher reaction lows would be required to check momentum. Unilever and Reckitt Benckiser broke out of their respective ranges in the last month. Hengan International posted a lower low last week for the first time in three years. A clear upward dynamic and break in the short-term progression of lower rally highs is now required to check potential for an additional test of underlying trading.
In the nutrition sector Mead Johnson remains in a consistent downtrend, characterised by a progression of lower rally highs. Herbalife broke downwards to new reaction lows this week to extend its downtrend. NuSkin Enterprises has fallen to test the psychological $40 area but commonality with the sector would suggest a clear upward dynamic will be required to check downside potential.
In the luxury sector Prada, LVMH and Christian Dior have completed lengthy consolidations with upside breaks in the last few weeks. Compagnie Financiere Richemont is leading but is becoming increasingly overextended and susceptible to mean reversion. Estee Lauder has lost momentum over the last year and will need to hold above $56 on the current pullback if the benefit of the doubt is to be given to potential for additional higher to lateral ranging.
Among lifestyle shares Nike has a broadly similar pattern to Starbucks but will need to sustain a break back above $100 to confirm a return to demand dominance beyond the short term. Disney found support in the region of the 200-day MA last month and a sustained move below it would be required to question medium-term scope for additional upside.
In the retail sector Wal-Mart completed a more than decade long range with an impressive advance earlier this year and is now consolidating that move. It has returned to test the 200-day MA and will need to hold above $65 if the breakout is to hold. Tesco has been ranging above 300p since January and will need to sustain a move above 350p to confirm a return to medium-term demand dominance.
In the materials sector BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto are currently breaking out of their respective bases. Air Liquide and Linde continue to trend consistently higher and found support in the region of their 200-day MAs this month. Praxair retested the $110 area again this week but will need to sustain a move above it to confirm a return to medium-term demand dominance. Exxon Mobil and Royal Dutch Shell continue to hold progressions of higher reaction lows.
In the engineering sector Siemens broke out of a 15-month base last week and a clear downward dynamic would be required to check current scope for additional upside. General Electric found support in the region of the upper side of its base and the 200-day MA in November. A sustained move below $20 would be required to question medium-term scope for additional higher to lateral ranging. Emerson Electric has rallied to test the upper side of the 18-month range and a clear downward dynamic would be required to question potential for a successful upward break. Intertek Group has become quite overextended relative to the MA following an impressive advance and is becoming increasingly susceptible to mean reversion.
In the financial sector Visa and Mastercard remain in consistent uptrends defined by progressions of higher reaction lows.
A clear rotation is evident in the above shares from this year's early leaders in the consumer and technology sectors to previous laggards in the materials, engineering and luxury goods sectors.