One energy stock to buy and one stock to drop as crude oil nosedives

Crude oil is in a tailspin on fears global surpluses could flood the market. It’s taking the energy sector down with it.

With oil companies under pressure, one technical analyst is recommending an energy heavyweight to ditch, and another that looks like a buy.

“The charts are mixed for the overall sector so I think really selection is key,” Ari Wald, head of technical analysis at Oppenheimer, told CNBC’s “Trading Nation” on Monday.

One name Wald advises steering clear of is Exxon Mobil, an industry leader that has a 23 percent weighting in the XLE energy ETF.

“Here’s a stock that’s been making lower highs since 2014. It’s in a downtrend, bouncing in a downtrend. It looks tactically like a sell here,” said Wald.

Exxon hit a 52-week high in late January, but its momentum has since petered out. Its shares are down more than 1 percent in the year to date, while the XLE ETF has added nearly 4 percent.

“On the flip side as far as opportunity, we think you want to buy leadership and we’re seeing the leadership in a lot of the E&P names like EOG Resources,” added Wald. “Here’s a stock that’s actually breaking above its 2014 high, coming off a new high, that former breakout level is now support. We think you buy EOG on the pullback.”

EOG, an exploration and production oil company, hit a 52-week high in May and held close to that level prior to the energy sector’s sell-offs this week. It remains 14 percent higher for the year.

Michael Bapis, partner and managing director at the Bapis Group at HighTower Advisors, sees short-term headwinds dying down and a bullish rally continuing for energy.

“Oil prices are dropping and people are so concerned about the tariff wars and everything that’s going on globally. I think that’s going to subside,” Bapis said on Monday’s “Trading Nation.” “Nobody’s even talking about the tax stimulus that’s going to help these companies. I mean, it’s going to be a two-, three-, four-year benefit.”

Analysts already anticipate massive earnings growth for the sector for the second quarter. Those surveyed by FactSet expect profits to expand by 102 percent for the period from April to June.

“We’re looking at Chevron and Conoco to pull the whole energy sector out of this dip here that we’re looking at,” added Bapis. “We don’t think it’s long-term. We really think this is a short-term, non-fundamental-based blip.”

Chevron and ConocoPhillips have had very different performances so far this year. Chevron is down 2 percent in 2018, while Conoco has rallied 27 percent.

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Trading Nation is a multimedia financial news program that shows investors and traders how to use the news of the day to their advantage. This is where experts from across the financial world – including macro strategists, technical analysts, stock-pickers, and traders who specialize in options, currencies, and fixed income – come together to find the best ways to capitalize on recent developments in the market. Trading Nation: Where headlines become opportunities.

Michael Santoli

Michael Santoli joined CNBC in October 2015 as a Senior Markets Commentator, based at the network's Global Headquarters in Englewood Cliffs, N.J.  Santoli brings his extensive markets expertise to CNBC's Business Day programming, with a regular appearance on CNBC's “Closing Bell (M-F, 3PM-5PM ET).   In addition, he contributes to CNBCand CNBC PRO, writing regular articles and creating original digital videos.

Previously, Santoli was a Senior Columnist at Yahoo Finance, where he wrote analysis and commentary on the stock market, corporate news and the economy. He also appeared on Yahoo Finance video programs, where he offered insights on the most important business stories of the day, and was a regular contributor to CNBC and other networks.

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