Making the tough buy or sell portfolio decisions is a typical challenge that most investors will eventually face. Trying to separate fact from emotion when making these decisions can be hard. It may be very difficult to part ways with a previously prized stock. Investors may have a checklist that includes certain criteria for portfolio evaluation purposes. When certain stocks no longer meet the guidelines, they may need to be cut loose. This is often easier said than done, especially when a stock has provided a large boost to the portfolio in the past. Investors who are able to successfully keep emotional attachment out of the stock picking process may give themselves a leg up compared to those who are not. 

Investors tracking shares of Schwab US Large-Cap ETF (:SCHX) will note that since the stock opened at 63.42, shares have seen a change of 1.1. During that period, the stock has touched a low of 63.3021 and tipped a high of 64.52. Volume on the day is presently 1064984. 

Conducting technical analysis of the stock may include following the Keltner Channel indicator. A recent check shows the 20 day lower band at 63.987617 and the 20 day upper band at 65.79602 for Schwab US Large-Cap ETF (:SCHX). During a clearly defined trend, a break above or below these levels may point to the underlying strength of the trend. A break above the upper band may signal continuing bullish trend strength, and a break below the lower band may signal continuing bearish trend strength.

The SMA or Simple Moving Average can be calculated for different time periods. The SMA helps smooth out volatility and makes it a bit less difficult to gauge the price trend of a stock. Let’s view some popular SMA levels below:

Simple Moving Average 20 day: 64.62892
Simple Moving Average 100 day: 66.01949
Simple Moving Average 10 day65.33134
Simple Moving Average 50 day: 65.0125
Simple Moving Average 30 day: 64.62578
Simple Moving Average 200 day: 67.25392

The 20 day Chaikin Money Flow indicator is currently 0.118021205. This indicator was developed by Marc Chaikin who observed that the pressures of buying and selling could be figured out by where a period finishes relative to the range of highs and lows.

Even though the stock market has been cranking along and touching record highs, there are bound to be some rough patches in the near future. Some investors may actually welcome a pullback in order to scoop up some stocks at a relative discount. Investors who are on top of things are most likely ready to spring when the next big buying opportunity pops up. Being prepared for a buying opportunity can make the process much easier when the time comes. As investors look ahead to the next round of company earnings reports, the focus may gravitate to those companies that have positioned themselves for sustained future growth. Many investors will be closely monitoring which companies outperform by the largest margin after earnings results are released.

Traders may use a variety of moving average indicators when examining a particular stock. Checking on some Exponential Moving Averages, we note that the 200 day is 66.275215, the 100 day is 65.77687, and the 50 day is 65.10024. Zooming in closer, we note that the 30 day EMA is 64.90405, the 20 day is 64.891815, and the 10 day is noted at 64.90018.

Investors will typically be keeping track of historical highs and lows for a particular stock that they are researching. Watching levels for Schwab US Large-Cap ETF (:SCHX, we can see that the all time high is currently 70.5, and the all time low is 10.56. Let’s look at some alternate high/low price data:

Six month low: 62.05
Six month high: 70.5
One year low: 60.45
One year high: 70.5
Three month low: 62.05
Three month high: 70.5
One month low: 62.74
One month high: 67.16

Traders might be keeping tabs on the Hull Moving Average. The current HMA reading is 63.82069. Traders may use the HMA to help identify the prevalent market trend. This may also lend to spotting useful exit and entry points on the stock.

Some investors may be lamenting the fact that they have not taken full advantage of the long bull run. There are plenty of pundits that are calling for a sharp stock market decline, but there are also many who believe that the ceiling has been raised and there is much more room for stocks to go higher. Getting into the market at these levels may be holding some investors back from jumping into the fray, and nobody can be sure which way the momentum will swing as we near the end of the year. The next round of company earnings reports should provide some good information about future prospects. Investors will be closely watching to see which sectors are running at full speed and which ones are lagging. 

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