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Market Pros: Is This the Moment to Get Defensive?

The S&P 500 inched forward Wednesday with strength in technology driving gains after Oppenheimer upgraded chipmakerBroadcom.

On a positive note, after days of struggling at 1,333, the S&P closed above that key technical level. The next closely watched technical point is 1,344, the high dating to June 2008.

However, it appears market pros will avoid placing large bullish bets ahead of earnings season, which starts next week. The concern is that the Japan quake, higher oil and other headwinds could generate a few nasty surprises.

Chatter on the Street also had everything to do with whether the market was calm or cautious. It has now been nine trading days since the S&P 500 rose or fell more than 0.7 percent. And again volume was light.

Is it time to get defensive? Or should you remain aggressive?

Instant Insights with the Fast Money traders

Guy Adami is keeping a close eye on the action in financials which finally began to participate. Considering the leadership in the financials he now thinks the S&P pushes toward 1350. “What happens when we get there, we’ll see,” he says.

Pete Najarian has spotted a stealth sign in the options market that he considers bullish. According to the Pit Boss, a larger than usual volume of calls have been trading in the Russia ETF.

Upside bets in the RSX may seem extremely stealth, but Najarian explains that the ETF is largely made up of energy and materials companies. He takes the action as a sign of increased demand generated by stronger global growth.

And as confirmation of his bullish bias, he adds, investors are now making similar bets on the commodities heavy Brazil ETF.

”Activity is all looking to the upside,” says Najarian. “It all plays into global growth,” he says. In other words he thinks we’re seeing growing BRIC economies and as a result we should also see a rising stock market.

The usually bullish Joe Terranova is cautious. That’s largely because a number of stocks including Caterpillar, Valero and Netflix opened in the green and reversed to close at their lows. Market pros call that kind of action outside down reversals and it gives Terranova caution.

”When you have stocks that get above resistance they should break out. There should be follow through buying. But in each of these cases investors ran for the exits. It’s time to protect profits,” he says.

In addition to the outside down reversals, Terranova also points to the action in oil and its impact on the equities market. “When oil printed $109 this morning, the rally rolled over.

Adami concedes that the price action mentioned by Terranova is, in fact, a reason to worry. He adds that Street chatter suggests Intel may warn and that could be a problem for stocks.

Zach Karabell thinks the market has more positive momentum than negative. He points to the market’s ability in the after hours to shrug off news that Portugal had requested an EU bailout. “It would seem the market is easily digesting news that would have generated tremors at one time.”

Tim Seymour agrees. “The bull market is not broken,” he says. However he also says with the Vix around 17 it wouldn’t hurt to buy protection into earnings season.

What do you think? We want to know?

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STREET FIGHT: CAN ANYTHING STOP NETFLIX?

Netflix hit another new all time high in Wednesday’s session on the heels of its new exclusive Mad Men deal with the action showing once again that it remains a treacherous short.

Yet that’s exactly how Len Brecken of Brecken Capital is playing it? Why's he so convinced this stock is going lower? Watch the video and find out now!





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Trader disclosure: On April 6, 2011, the following stocks and commodities mentioned or intended to be mentioned on CNBC’s "Fast Money" were owned by the "Fast Money" traders; Seymour owns (AAPL); Seymour owns (F); Seymour owns (GM); Seymour owns (MOS); Seymour owns (TM); Karabell owns (BHP); Karabell owns (GOOG), (RIMM), (MRVL);
Adami owns (AGU); Adami owns (C); Adami owns (GS); Adami owns (INTC); Adami owns (MSFT); Adami owns (NUC); Adami owns (BTU); Adami owns (BTU); Finerman and Finerman's Firm own (AAPL); Finerman and Finerman's Firm own (CVS); Finerman's firm is long GM leaps; Finerman and Finerman's firm own (MSFT); Finerman's firm owns (TGT); Finerman owns (USO); Finerman is short (IWM); Finerman is short (SPY); Finerman is short (MDY); Finerman's firm is long s&p 500 puts; Finerman's firm is long russell 2000 puts; Terranova owns (C); Terranova owns (JAM); Terranova owns (VRTS); Terranova owns (UPL); Terranova owns (PBR); Terranova owns (TCK); Terranova owns (BAX); Terranova owns (XOM); Terranova owns (AKAM); Terranova owns (CVI); Terranova owns (CNQ); Terranova is long (POT) puts; Terranova is long (NFLX) puts; Terranova is long (CAT) puts; Terranova is long (VLO) puts; Terranova is long (F) puts; Terranova is Chief Market Strategist of Virtus Investment Partners, LTD

For Zachary Karabell
River Twice Capital is short (AAPL), Karabell owns (AAPL)
River Twice Capital owns (AMSC)
River Twice Capital and Karabell owns (BRCM)
River Twice Capital and Karabell owns (CSCO)
River Twice Capital owns (EXPE), (DE)
River Twice Capital is short (QQQ), (SPY)
River Twice Capital and Karabell owns (MON), (POT)

For Joe Terranova
Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of (ABAX)
Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of (AMKR)
Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of (CCG)
Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of (CASS)
Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of (CSVI)
Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of (EXR)
Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of (FCFS)
Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of (IGE)
Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of (KRC)
Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of (LDR)
Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of (NCRI)
Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of (DBV)
Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of (XLB)
Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of (XLV)
Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of (XLP)
Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of (XLY)
Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of (XLE)
Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of (XLF)
Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of (XLI)
Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of (XLK)
Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of (XLU)
Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of (WDFC)
Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of (YDNT)
Virtus Investment Partners Owns More Than 1% Of DOMINO'S PIZZA UK & IRL PLC

For Len Brecken
Brecken Is Short (NFLX)

For Mike Khouw
Cantor Fitzgerald is a market maker in (RIMM)

For Mark Gulley
**No Disclosures

For Alexandra Lebenthal
**No disclosures

For Amelia Bourdeau
**No disclosures

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