Wall Street finds new sources of angst

Dozens of earnings from Coach to Disney are expected Tuesday, but analysts will also be watching two trends that dragged on stocks Monday.

"Brent fell below $50, and Apple fell below its 200-day moving average. The technicals are looking just really shaky, and unfortunately that's just what's keeping us in," said Jack Ablin, BMO Private Bank CIO.

Energy stocks fell 2 percent Monday, following a more than 3.5 percent drop in West Texas Intermediate crude futures and 4.5 percent decline in Brent futures, which fell below $50 per barrel. Apple was also a negative for the market, falling 2.4 percent to $118.44, below its 200-day moving average of $120.86. Apple is now down about 12 percent from its April high.

Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange.
Lucas Jackson | Reuters
Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange.

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"There's no correlation between crude oil and the S&P 500 right now, although there has been at times in the past," said John Kosar, chief strategist at Asbury Research. "But Apple is the big one to look at for big-name stocks that move like their larger indexes, and Apple is the poster child for that." Apple is positively correlated to the Nasdaq 100 and S&P 500, he said. It's also a member of the Dow and contributed 19 points of its 91-point decline Monday.

"This is where Apple should hold. This is where new buying should come in. This is where everybody should love Apple. If they don't love Apple, and it rolls over, for me, it has broader implications for the broader market," said Kosar.

Kosar said the stock is at a crossroads. "The next best thing about knowing what a market is going to do next is knowing it's at a spot where it needs to make a decision. If we can't hold in here, not only for Apple, but the market in general, we may get our first real correction that we've seen in years," said Kosar, noting a correction would be a 10 percent decline.

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He said the market has become too complacent, and also too comfortable with a "buy the dip" mentality every time the market loses several percent. "The market acts like we're still in a quantitative easing stimulated environment," Kosar said. "You get to the 200-day or you break 4 or 5 percent, and you buy the market. You win. When something becomes too easy, it becomes dangerous. And that's what I think is wrong with this buy-the-break mentality."

Ablin said Monday's action in Apple and the continued meltdown in oil add to his concerns about the market's internals. He also said the jobs report will be key for the market this week, and that will be a big focus.

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"We can't rely on earnings reports so we have to rely on economic data to help support the market so we really do need the economy to pull things along because we're really losing the pillars, the fundamental pillars that hold this market in place," said Ablin. He said he is also concerned about the commodities selloff. "It's hard to make a case to jump in and bottom fish in the commodity pond."

According to Thomson Reuters, 70 percent of companies in the S&P 500 that have reported have also beaten earnings estimates so far. Earnings are now expected to be up 0.9 percent for the quarter.

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Goldman Sachs on Monday released a breakdown of how sectors earnings ranked compared to estimates. Not surprising, the energy sector fared the worst, with just 32 percent of companies beating estimates, while health care was the best with 73 percent. Energy had the most companies matching their estimates—at 44 percent, and another 24 percent missed estimates. Health care had the least amount of earnings in line with estimates at 25 percent and no companies missed.

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What to Watch

Markets will be watching factory orders Tuesday, at 10 a.m. ET.

Earnings are expected before the bell from Toyota, Axa, Aetna, Archer Daniels Midland, Coach, Norwegian Cruise Line, Regeneron, Health Care REIT, Charter Communications, NRG Energy, Sprint, Bloomin Brands, Time Inc., Beazer Homes, Kellogg, Cedar Fair and Och-Ziff. Disney reports after the market close, as does Activision Blizzard, Cerner, LendingClub, Pioneer Natural Resources, Oneok, Genworth Financial, Dreamworks, Tanger Factory Outlet, Zillow, Newfield Exploration, Allscripts Healthcare, Plains All American and Bankrate.