Stock Market: Stuck in Downtrend or About to Bounce?

Wednesday, 16 May 2012 | 5:34 PM ET

By the end of Wednesday’s session, investors were wondering just how low the S&P might go.

For the 4th consecutive day, stocks closed lower paring gains from earlier in the session, as new worries surfaced about the financial future of Greece.

According to published reports, the people of Greece have pulled a record amount of money out of their bank accounts in the last 10 days – presumably so they can get their money in euro and not drachmas, should Greece exit the EU suddenly.

Word on the Street
Dissecting the day's major business news, including pessimism on Wall Street, commodities' declines and more, with the Fast Money traders.

Opinion polls in Greece show leftists who are opposed to the terms of the international bailout for the country would likely win a new election, set for June 17.

World events have take such a sharp turn for the worse that Wall Street strategists are the most negative they've been on stocks since the bull market began more than three years ago.

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“I’m bearish into the end of the year,” admits trader Stephen Weiss. “There are real problems in front of us.”

As concerned as Weiss is about Greece and the potential ripple, he also says that's only one of the serious headwinds threatening the market. He reminds China is slowing and the US may be on the edge of a fiscal cliff.

According to Goldman Sachs, the United States’ economy could shrink as much as 4 percentage points in the first half of 2013 if Congress fails to address the expiration of $600 billion worth of tax breaks and jobless benefits by the end of this year.

“I don’t think most companies have realistic expectations in their current forecasts,” Weiss says. “I’m short.”

Trader Dan Nathan shares the concern. “Not only are there a lot of fundamentals concerns in the market but the technical are also bearish,” he says.


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Trader Tim Seymour is somewhere in the middle. “Typically when market sentiment turns this negative it’s a contrarian buy signal,” he says, “but this time may be different.”

Seymour agrees that there are many headwinds in the market – some of which can’t be anticipated such as if Greece leaves the euro – how the exit plays out. However he’d move to the sidelines, rather than sell short.

Trader Brian Kelly is largely on the other site. “I think we’re close to a bottom,” he says. “We may not be there yet, but we’re close.”

Trader Mark Murphy is also somewhat optimistic. “It looks to me like stocks are nearing oversold conditions.”

What do you think? We want to know!

Posted by CNBC's Lee Brodie

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Trader disclosure: On May 16, 2012, the following stocks and commodities mentioned or intended to be mentioned on CNBC’s "Fast Money" were owned by the "Fast Money" traders; Tim Seymour is long BAC; Tim Seymour is long SBUX; Tim Seymour is long FCX; Brian Kelly is long T; Brian Kelly is long VZ; Brian Kelly is long KRE; Brian Kelly is long WFC; Brian Kelly is long USG; Dan Nathan is long JAN 450 PUTS AAPL; Dan Nathan is long BAC MAY 7 PUTS; Dan Nathan is long C JULY 32/27 PUT SPREADS; Dan Nathan is long MS MAY 16/15/12 PUT FLY; Dan Nathan is long IBM JULY 200/185 PUT SPREADS; Dan Nathan is long RIM JAN 20/25 CALL SPREAD; Stephen Weiss is long JPM; Stephen Weiss is long CSC; Stephen Weiss is long UUP; Stephen Weiss is short JCP; Stephen Weiss is short CMI; Stephen Weiss is short MT

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