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Market Topping Out Or Consolidating Ahead Of Up Move?

It seems like the 1113 – 1116 range on the S&P remains the make or break level for investors. Once again stocks hit this technically important area and stalled.

Now investors are struggling to determine if the market has topped out and the next leg is lower – or if the market is at a consolidation point with further gains to follow.

Fundamentals, may favor the bears - an unexpected decline in durable goods orders and weaker than expected full year forecast from Boeing suggests weakness lies ahead.

Also the Fed’s Beige Book, a summary of national economic conditions, added to the negative. It indicated activity was not as robust in a few districts and has lost steam broadly over the past several weeks.

However the bulls aren’t without ammunition. The spate of strong reports from Corporate America continued Wednesday with better-than-expected results from General Dynamics and ConocoPhillips .

How should you position now?

Instant Insights with the Fast Money traders

At these key technical levels, the market can go one way or the other very quickly, explains Brian Kelly on the Halftime Report. Considering the market has come very far very fast it makes sense to be neutral or even to take some short positions.

Doug Kass says almost the same thing, adds host Melissa Lee. He sent a message out today saying he's market neutral.

I’m still watching 23.38, the 200-day on the Vix says Jon Najarian.

If the Vix can close below 23.38 a couple days in a row I’d take it as confirmation that the market is heading to the upside.

However if it doesn’t we’re looking at a triple bottom on the Vix and I’d take it as a signal we go back into a corrective trade.


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Trader disclosure: On July 28, 2010, the following stocks and commodities mentioned or intended to be mentioned on CNBC’s Fast Money were owned by the Fast Money traders; Finerman owns (AAPL); Finerman owns (BAC); Finerman’s firm owns (BAC); Finerman owns (CVS); Finerman’s firm owns (CVS); Finerman owns (FLS); Finerman’s firm owns (FLS); Finerman’s firm owns (GLW); Finerman owns (JPM); Finerman’s firm owns (JPM); Finerman’s firm owns (RIMM); Finerman’s firm owns (SKS); Kelly owns (BP) puts; Jon Najarian owns (GLD) puts; Jon Najarian owns (AAPL) call spreads; Jon Najarian owns (MSFT) and short calls; Jon Najarian owns (COP) and short calls; Jon Najarian owns (RRC) and short calls; Jon Najarian owns (MSFT) and short calls; Jon Najarian owns (SYMC) and short calls; Jon Najarian owns (RIMM) and short calls; Jon Najarian owns (IACI) and short calls; Jon Najarian owns (LVS) and short calls; Jon Najarian owns (MGM) and short calls; Jon Najarian owns (XOM) and short calls; Jon Najarian owns (MOS) and short calls; Cortes owns (RSX), (GS), (MS); Cortes is short the S&P 500; Cortes is short the Yen; Cortes is short US Treasuries; Terranova owns (AMZN), (EMC), (CREE), (BRCM), (LRCX), (COP), (AXP), (BMO), (CSX), (PEP), (CVS), (GS), (PCP), (C), (APA), (FCX), (JOYG), (MMM), (MOS), (UAUA), (WYNN), (GOOG), (BBY), (SU), (KOL), (XBI), (SWN), (BAX), (JNPR); Terranova is short (GLD)

For Brian Kelly
Accounts managed by Kanundrum Capital own (ELX)
Accounts managed by Kanundrum Capital own (ORI)
Accounts managed by Kanundrum Capital own (VIV)
Accounts managed by Kanundrum Capital own (BAK)
Accounts managed by Kanundrum Capital own (AAPL) calls
Accounts managed by Kanundrum Capital own (UNG)
Accounts managed by Kanundrum Capital are short (GLD)
Accounts managed by Kanundrum Capital are short (RKH)

For Joe Terranova
Terranova works for (VRTS)
Terranova is chief market strategist of Virtus Investment Partners, LTD.
Virtus Investment Partners owns more than 1% of (CASS)
Virtus Investment Partners owns more than 1% of (LDR)
Virtus Investment Partners owns more than 1% of (LPHI)
Virtus Investment Partners owns more than 1% of (MGRC)
Virtus Investment Partners owns more than 1% of (XLB)
Virtus Investment Partners owns more than 1% of (XLP)
Virtus Investment Partners owns more than 1% of (XLY)
Virtus Investment Partners owns more than 1% of (XLI)
Virtus Investment Partners owns more than 1% of (XLK)
Virtus Investment Partners owns more than 1% of (XLU)
Virtus Investment Partners owns more than 1% of (SUBK)
Virtus Investment Partners owns more than 1% of (WDFC)
Virtus Investment Partners owns more than 1% of (YDNT)
Virtus Investment Partners owns more than 1% of (DRYS)

For Dennis Gartman
Funds managed by Gartman own (SJT)
Funds managed by Gartman own (FAX)
Funds managed by Gartman own (BPT)

Tavis McCourt
***No Disclosures***

David Levy
***No Disclosures***

Mike Khouw
***No Disclosures***




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