However “real” the news may be perceived, rarely is news “breaking.”  However, in light of all the annoying, repetitive press these days, I thought I’d share some good news that – as a matter of fact – is somewhat ground-breaking.  
Something happened this month that hasn’t occurred since November of 2009.  A relatively accurate, very-long-term stock market indicator flipped positive after spending the last 23 months on a sell signal.
The indicator in question is called the Price Momentum Oscillator (PMO).  It was developed by Carl Swenlin, a legend in the technical analysis and trend following arena.  I’ll just say that the tool basically measures momentum over time and provides clues as to whether that momentum is positive or negative.
It can be used over any time frame – short, intermediate, or long-term.  The shorter the time frame, the more signals you get, but when looking at a monthly (long-term) time-frame, the signals (positive or negative) are few and far between.
Below is a chart that shows you how infrequent these signals occur.  This chart goes back 20 years and you can see there have only been four accurate, positive signals (in 1997, 2003, 2009, and today).  The only “false” signal occurred during the quick market correction that took place in 1998, after which a positive signal was triggered, but would have resulted in a losing trade (if this indicator was used all by itself).

S&P 500 Index (Long-term / Monthly)

I’ve drawn blue lines on the chart above for easy viewing of the positive signals.  You can also observe the red negative signals, (including the April, 2015 sell signal, which was one of the many reasons we decided to steer clear of stocks as the months marched on throughout 2015-16).

The point of all this is to say that, prior to this month, there have only been four total positive signals in 20 years, three of which provided us with a very strong piece of evidence that suggested the long-term momentum of the market would be up.

Naturally, there is always a chance this could end up being a false signal – and that this “breaking news” could wilt away if the market decides to take a dive over the course of the next several months.

With all that said, since I take a “weight of the evidence” approach to investing, I use many more indicators and tools other than the PMO explained above.  For now, the market is short-term overbought (exhausted), but intermediate and long-term trends are looking good.  Until that changes, we’ll continue managing our clients’ portfolios in a manner that corresponds with this positive thesis.

Adam D. Koos, CFP®
President / Portfolio Manager

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Adam D. Koós, CFP®, CMT

Adam D. Koós, CFP®, CMT

President / Portfolio Manager

Adam started his career in 2001 and has been named one of Central Ohio’s “People to Know in Finance” by Columbus Business First. He is a recipient of the 2011 Business First Greater Columbus “Forty Under 40″ award, a 6-time winner of Columbus CEO Magazine’s “Best of Business” awards (winning “Best Private Wealth Management Firm”), his company has been named one of central Ohio’s “Top Fee-Only Financial Planning Firms” every year since 2014, and he is most proud to have been honored as a winner of the Better Business Bureau “Torch Award for Ethics & Trust.”  Adam was also nationally recognized by Financial Advisor Magazine as one of only eight portfolio managers in the country selected to their “Research All-Star Team,” and Investopedia has named him one of the Top-100 Most Influential Financial Advisors in the U.S. He is a Chartered Market Technician (CMT), CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ (CFP®) professional, and also holds the Certified Financial Technician (CFTe) designation through the International Federation of Technical Analysts.  He can be reached at  [email protected].


  1. David Tomik

    Very nice improvements…I’ll probably be back very soon.



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