A year that had been looking pretty bleak for the stock market suddenly appears to be turning a corner.
Since the Feb. 11 low, the S&P 500 has gained about 14 percent, thanks to strong performance from materials and energy stocks. However, other sectors are starting to catch up to give the rally more balance, and that has triggered an important signal that historically has portended for even stronger gains.
Last week, for the first time since September 2014, all 10 S&P 500 sectors were above their 200-day moving averages. Financials, which remain negative for the year but have gained more than 12 percent over the past three months, were the last group to cross over.
Going through such a long period of running below the trend line is unusual, as is having the entire index move above it after being below for more than a year. However, in three of the four instances since 1993 when each sector had cleared the 200-day average, it was a "profoundly bullish" market sign, according to Bespoke Investment Group.