From the desk of Willie Delwiche.
Key Takeaway: Mixed liquidity backdrop makes rebuilding risk appetites more of a challenge. Tailwinds that have fueled cyclical strength are tapering even if the Fed is not yet ready to. Breadth on a slippery slope from digestion to deterioration to downtrend.
While the indexes themselves continue to hold up relatively well, there is evidence of deterioration that cannot be overlooked from a tactical perspective. Whether this builds into a situation that argues for more defensive positioning from a cyclical perspective remains to be seen.
Our relative strength leadership group was unchanged last week. Financials, Materials, and Energy are the leaders at the large-cap level and are also holding up well at the mid-cap and small-cap level. Our industry group heat map reflects these leadership trends. There is little evidence here that cyclical value leadership is waning in favor of resurgent cyclical growth. Defensive sectors have fared better on a short-term basis but that has yet to result in a sustained climb in our relative strength rankings.