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S&P 500 flashes a cautionary signal

Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange.
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Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange.

Tuesday's messy stock market action on the heels of Monday's divergence between the S&P 500 and Nasdaq has put some chart watchers on alert.

While a big selloff isn't anticipated, the S&P 500's run at its highs and then failure signals it may be in for a choppy time.

"That could be a negative divergence. When you rally hard, looks like you're going to get there and then you don't get there, it's almost like a jogger collapsing half a mile before the finish line," said Paul LaRosa, technical strategist at Maxim Group.