Technically Speaking, January 2024

Happy New Year, dear readers!

I hope 2024 is off to a great start! 

It is a new year, and while that typically comes with new resolutions, new ideas, and new strategies, I have decided to go over my books again and brush up on my basics. We often get caught up in complex strategy and take basic, simple concepts such as the Dow Theory for granted! My goal for the first quarter is to take a hard look at the basics again and reiterate my strategies based on those basics. 

My next goal is to reach out to more technicians this year and learn their perspectives. We are lucky to be part of a community that loves to share knowledge, and we don’t use it to its full potential! For starters, some great events are lined up just around the corner. CMT Association’s Midwinter Retreat in Tampa is on the 1st of February, followed by the 2024 Dubai Summit on the 29th of February (don’t we know how to make extra days count)! Both these in-person events would be great to bring the community together as we take on another year of the market cycle! Members, non-members, everyone is invited! 

As markets across the globe continue with their sector rotations, more global indices are joining the all-time highs (India) and new 52-week highs (Japan) as we speak. The Dollar Index continues to trade under an overhead supply zone of 102, which is always an area to watch out for early signs. Stocks continue outperforming commodities and bonds, but we could see a slight edge in precious metals if certain trends play out. But as technicians, confirmation reigns supreme!

This year, we plan to organize multiple in-person events across the globe to present all of you with opportunities to network and grow together as a community. Keep an eye out for your mailbox! 

Until we meet again, Think Technically!

Rashmi Bhatnagar


What's Inside...

President's Letter

President’s Letter from Rob Palladino, CMT

Welcome to 2024! I sincerely hope that everyone experienced a relaxing end to 2023...

Read More

Santa Didn’t Come, What Now?

Read More

Some Charts to Start the Year

Read More

A Relative Report

One of my favourite tools to use is Relative Strength…

So let’s talk about it…

I like to keep my...

Read More

Primary Bull Market for SIL and GDX Signaled on 12/27/23

The table below summarizes the current state of the trend for the precious metals and their ETF...

Read More

Remembering Alan R. Shaw, CMT

In solemnity, we acknowledge the passing of a luminary within the field of Technical Analysis and a founding pillar of...

Read More

President's Letter

President’s Letter from Rob Palladino, CMT

Welcome to 2024! I sincerely hope that everyone experienced a relaxing end to 2023 with family and friends and has begun the new year with renewed purpose. The CMT Association will begin 2024 with two exciting programming events. The first event will be the return of the mid-winter retreat, to be held on February 1st in Tampa, FL. I will personally be attending this event and look forward to seeing everyone in attendance. The CMT staff and volunteers have built a great roster of speakers ( The second event, the CMT Summit, will be held in Dubai on February 29th at The Museum of the Future, and features an excellent lineup of speakers ( This event will be the Association’s first major event in the GCC region and much investment, coordination, and high-level meetings with local contacts have taken place to bring this event to our membership. I encourage our CMT membership to register for these events if it can align with your work schedule; they are excellent networking and educational opportunities, and our staff has put a lot of effort into building the program. Please come and support the CMT Association!

As we celebrate the legacy of Martin Luther King Jr. on January 15th and Black History in the month of February, I would like to discuss a well-articulated and thought-provoking proposal that came across the Board of Director’s desk last month and was approved at the January quarterly board meeting: that of creating a Black Caucus. Several CMT members, namely Damanick Dantes, Cedric Thompson, and Stella Osoba (a former CMT Board of Director), presented their plan to the Executive Committee on how and why they would spearhead the establishment of a global black caucus.

Firstly, the CMT Association is in dire need to broaden its inclusivity by gender, race, and geography. The Black Caucus would aim to foster greater inclusivity by serving as a platform for education and membership for people of color, particularly those of African descent, by offering targeted training programs, networking opportunities, and extra educational resources to encourage its members to gain technical analysis proficiency and become a CMT charter-holder and member. Focused education and mentorship would elevate the representation and impact for individuals of African descent but also improve the diversity of thought around the field of technical analysis, quantitative finance research, and the CMT Association’s member benefits and admissions process. A major goal of the Black Caucus founders would focus on building a pipeline of diverse candidates from HBCUs and other American universities into quantitative finance roles on Wall Street and beyond with the assistance of the CMT Association’s network.

I am so thankful that the Black Caucus founders submitted this proposal across our desk and am more excited at the Black Caucus’ prospects going forward. Please find Damanick, Cedric, or Stella on LinkedIn to assist them in their grassroots efforts to champion the growth of the Black Caucus!


Robert Palladino, CMT

Robert Palladino, who holds a Chartered Market Technician (CMT) designation, is a senior foreign exchange trader for JPMorgan Chase with experience trading foreign exchange, commodities, and interest rate products, including derivatives. His foreign exchange career has allowed him to work in Hong...

Santa Didn’t Come, What Now?

First things first, stocks fell during the historically bullish Santa Claus Rally (SCR) period. You can read all about the SCR in Here Comes The Santa Claus Rally. The absence of an SCR may be a minor warning sign stocks are due for a break. But seriously, after a nine-week win streak for the S&P 500 (longest since 2004), some weakness shouldn’t be overly surprising.

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Nonetheless, looking at the past six times Santa didn’t come (going back 30 years), January has been lower the past five in a row and the first quarter was higher only three times, with modest returns overall. I’d like to stress this isn’t an end-of-the-world signal, but we shouldn’t ignore the clues markets give us when ‘stocks don’t go up when they should.’

We remain optimistic stocks will do well this year, but maybe stocks are due for a break?

Here’s a chart I shared many times last year. It shows how stocks do on average each quarter of the four-year Presidential cycle. Sure enough, this cycle stocks rallied big time at the end of the mid-term year (2022) and then the first half of the pre-election year (2023), saw a break in Q3 of the pre-election year, before rallying hard to end the pre-election year. Now as we move into an election year, take note that Q1 tends to be a weak part of the calendar. The good news is the rest of an election year tends to be strong.

I’ve heard a lot from people asking how stocks could possibly do well in 2024 after their huge year in 2023. Well, we don’t officially release our Outlook for ’24 until next week, but I’ll just give a little bit away now. We still think this bull market has plenty of life left in it.

What happens after a 20% year you ask?

  • I found there were 20 previous times the S&P 500 gained at least 20% and it was higher the following year 16 times (80%) and up a very solid median return of 12.1%.
  • Last time we saw a 20% gain (’21) stocks moved into a bear market the next year (’22), but the nine years before that (and 10 of the last 11) saw gains after a 20% year.
  • It would be extremely rare for stocks to actually gain more in ’24 than they did in ’23, as only once in history (’97) did the S&P 500 follow up a year that was up more than 20% with a bigger gain.
  • Lastly, another 20% gain is possible, as it happened four previous years.

The bottom line is a big up year by itself isn’t a reason to become bearish, as history says it is likely to see continued strong gains.

I will leave you with two charts that I think are must-knows for investors as we start the new year. First off, a balanced portfolio (60% stocks and 40% bonds) had a historically bad year in ’22, but came roaring back last year. We are optimistic that both stock and bonds should do well this year, but you’ll have to wait one more week to get our official targets.

Lastly, on average stocks have seen a 14.2% peak-to-trough correction during a calendar year since 1980. Even last year, as great as it was, saw a 10.3% correction into late October. In fact, a lot of really good years have seen some scary pullbacks amid alarming headlines, so as the quote above stresses, start planning now for when you see red on the screen. Will you panic? Or use it as an opportunity?


Ryan Detrick, CMT

Ryan Detrick, Senior Vice President, Chief Market Strategist, is a member of the LPL Financial Research tactical asset allocation committee, responsible for directly impacting the portfolio decision-making process, as well as a member of the market insights team, developing and articulating equity...

Some Charts to Start the Year

Yield Curve

One of the core tenets of technical analysis that is taught by the CMT Association but that is often overlooked by many who are beginning their technical journey is intermarket analysis. We too often want to look solely at a price chart of an individual security and make our decisions. However, there is a robust well of information that exists either in economic data we may only analyze in the moment, or in asset classes that we tend to not pay attention to. As I have been fortunate in my career to work in equities, foreign exchange, commodities and fixed income, I understand the depth of information other asset markets can bring to the equation.

My approach at Stay Vigilant is to demystify the world of finance for the average investor. I call it demystifinance. I try to show how an institutional investor may consider fundamental, technical and catalyst information to make an informed decision. My hope is that you can as well. A major part of my work is intermarket and intertemporal analysis. This is what I will dig into this week.

The first chart today considers the yield curve. Many have heard that the yield curve predicts recessions. This is correct as the yield curve has a perfect hit rate. However, a big problem is that it has long and variable lags i.e. a recession could occur anywhere from 3 months to 2 years after it inverts. This may be why many were too negative in 2023. There is a logic as to why it should work as an inverted yield curve makes it less appealing for banks to lend money, which eventually slows the economy.

This first chart looks at three things – the 2 year vs. 10 year part of the yield curve with a horizontal line drawn at 0 to show where it inverts, the Bloomberg consensus economist odds of a recession in 6 months, and the yearly returns of the SPX. We can see three things: 1. A recession (red-shaded area) does occur after the curve goes below 0  2. The consensus economists only get this pessimistic right before a recession  3. SPX yearly returns are always negative once a recession happens. While none of this may be immediately actionable, it is an important backdrop to keep in our heads.


The most fundamental decision for investors, particularly at the start of the year, is whether (and how much) to allocate to stocks or to bonds. There are many approaches an advisor may take in helping a client reach this decision, but the fundamental premise is that the stability of fixed income can provide ballast to a sometimes volatile equity portfolio. As such, concepts such as the 60-40 portfolio for individual investors or risk parity for institutional investors have become quite common.

The second chart today looks at the correlation of stocks and bonds. For bonds, I use bond yields because I can get a longer time series of information. Remember, when bond yields go higher, bond prices go lower and vice versa. I look at the relative performance of stocks and bonds and compare it to inflation as measured by CPI. Inflation, after all, may have been THE story of 2023.

This chart shows that inflation is critical to the correlation of performance between stocks and bonds. On the right side of the chart, in the red box, I show that when inflation is low, stock returns and bond yields are positively correlated. This means stocks and bonds are negatively correlated. This is because the only concern is then growth, which means when stocks go higher on positive growth outlooks, bond yields (prices) go higher (lower) on expected higher rates. When stocks go lower on negative growth outlooks, bond yields go lower on expected Federal Reserve rate cuts. In both cases, stock prices and bond prices move in opposite directions meaning one hedges the other and provides a balanced portfolio.

However, on the left side of the chart, in the white box, we can see that in periods of high inflation/CPI, the opposite is true. Stock returns and bond yields are negatively correlated which means stock prices and bond prices are positively correlated. This is because the market is focused on inflation – higher inflation means higher yields expected and lower stock prices as inflation hurts margins. In these periods, the portfolio that consists of both stocks and bonds is not hedged as both assets move in the same direction. This is exactly what we saw on the negative side in 2022 and is what we have seen on the positive side in Q4 of 2023.

The question then remains for the investor: what is your view of inflation in 2024? Inflation will impact the move of stocks and bonds relative to one another.

Stocks vs. Bonds

Sticking with the stocks vs. bonds relative performance, I create an indicator from the ratio of the total return of the SPX Index and the US Treasury bond index. I compare this relative performance to economic indicators that get tracked and discussed in the market. After all, the economy leads earnings and earnings lead stocks. If the economy is doing well, all else equal, stocks should do well. If it is not doing well, stocks may struggle.

We saw in the first chart that both the yield curve and the consensus economists suggest there could be struggles in the economy sometime in the next 6 months. What about other indicators that may be more timely than these?

The first two you should consider in this chart are the US ISM Index (NAPM PMI) and the Leading Economic Indicators (LEI). Both of these are coincident with the stock market, which itself is a leading indicator. You can see that both of these headed lower for much of 2023 but have flat-lined a bit of late. As these stopped going lower, the relative performance of stocks vs. bonds has shot higher, perhaps much more than the economic indicators may suggest if history is a guide.

Two other economic data points I add on this chart are GDP (green) and the US unemployment rate (inverted in purple). I add these on the chart in order to show you that both of these data points lag the relative performance of stocks and bonds quite badly. While many in the news like to discuss these data points extensively, both are lagging as to the point of being almost useless for most market practitioners.

FOMC Rate Cuts

The final chart I want to show is the yearly performance of the SPX compared to when the FOMC cuts its discount rates. After all, if the economy has risk to it as some of the other charts suggest, that should mean the FOMC will cut rates. This should be good for stocks, right?

The market has been pricing in 6 rate cuts throughout 2024 even though the market broadly speaking is expecting a soft landing and not a recession. A soft landing is when the growth slows down but people don’t lose their jobs.

I look at 50 years of Federal Reserve Discount Rate and SPX yearly return data. I have drawn vertical white lines when the FOMC is cutting rates. The red-shaded area indicates when there is a recession. What you can see is that the FOMC has cut rates 8 times in these 50 years and there has been a recession 6 of these times. The other 2 times were what we would call a soft landing.

We can also see that if in fact we get a soft landing, the SPX yearly returns are positive. If we get a recession, the SPX returns are always negative. This would suggest the market returns right now are suggesting a soft landing with FOMC rate cuts forecast to occur. One finer point, however, the keen eye may see that the SPX yearly returns were negative in the period leading up to the rate cuts ahead of a soft landing. Thus, the market seems to have been responding more to no recession than actual rate cuts.

Restrictive Policy

Today I want to build on the concept of intermarket analysis, where we look at economic indicators, fundamental data and prices from other markets to help us assess the market that we invest in. We discussed the outlook for growth and inflation yesterday, and ended with the FOMC rate cuts and the economic soft landing being priced into the market.

The first chart today tries to anticipate why many in the market think the FOMC needs to cut rates in 2024. For this chart, I have created a custom index called ‘Restrictive’ which is simply the difference between CPI and the Federal Reserve Discount Rate. When this number is below zero, it means the Discount Rate is above the CPI and this policy may be deemed restrictive. When it is above zero, it means inflation is higher than the Discount Rate and the policy may be deemed easy. I compare this pink line to the yearly change in the SPX Index and the yearly change in GDP.

If we look at this pink line, when it has been below zero in the early 00s, around 2014-2015 and then in 2019, this restrictive policy has led to shrinking GDP and negative SPX returns. Right now, the policy by this measure would be deemed restrictive, yet we have seen neither negative SPX returns nor a shrinking GDP.

We can draw a parallel to the mid 1990s when this policy was also restrictive for quite some time but we saw neither negative growth nor negative equity returns. This is the soft landing period that we mentioned yesterday. This was a period of very strong global growth, particularly in emerging markets, that led to what Alan Greenspan referred to as a ‘savings conundrum’ with money flowing into the US from savers abroad. Perhaps this is what created easier financial conditions even though the policy was seen as restrictive.

Thus, investors today need to ask themselves if there are any exogenous factors that are making conditions easier today in the face of restrictive policy. This is what we may need to support economic and equity performance right now. Could it be an expansive fiscal policy? Could it be retiring Baby Boomers spending in the services economy? Could it be the development of AI?

Housing Market

One part of the US economy that is always a tried and true indicator of strength or weakness is the housing market. Given the large ‘multiplier’, housing stimulates economies by the large number of jobs created, the wide variety of products that need to go into a house, and the incremental of spending that results from orders for lumber, to copper for plumbing & electricity to the money spent at local diners by the workers. As a result, many people track housing as an important indicator of what may happen in the economy.

One critical data point that many investors follow is the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) Index in white on the second chart. It is a composite index of strength or weakness in the economy and here I have inverted it so it lines up with the other data. It was strong in 2021, weak in 2022, started 2023 with a sharp bounce but has recently been struggling. What is leading to this?

The first suggestion would be mortgage rates. On this chart I use the average 30-year mortgage rate in the US in blue. We can see that it was historically low throughout the 2015-2021 period but moved sharply higher in 2022 and 2023. Federal Reserve rate hiking was a key driver to this but perhaps not the entire driver. I want to explore that because if the FOMC is set to cut rates, this could be a tailwind for housing.

The purple line is a custom index I created called mortgage spread (MORTSPD). It is the difference between the 30-year mortgage rate and 10-year US Treasury. I look at this spread because banks that provide mortgages will hedge their interest rate risk with the most liquid US Treasury which is the 10-year. Historically this spread averages between 1.5-2.0%. You can see that in 2023, this spread surge to 3.5%, the highest in 20 years. What happened? While we don’t know for sure, there are two things that I can think of that we may want to consider: 1. The Federal Reserve is shrinking its balance sheet which includes mortgage-backed securities  2. A banking crisis in March of 2023 has many banks unable or unwilling to make new loans. This is important as it may suggest some stickiness in how quickly mortgage rates will come lower even if the FOMC lowers rates.

The last line is another custom index that I created that I think does the best job of indicating the health of the housing market. Mortgage rates tell one piece of the story but as we all know, if mortgage rates are 0% and we do not have a job, we will not buy a house and take out a loan. Similarly, if mortgage rates are high, but we have a good job, we can afford those higher payments. My first mortgage was 8%. Thus, my custom index simply combines the 30-year mortgage rate and the US unemployment rate. You can see that this indicator did a better job of calling for strength in housing early last year when rates alone did not. It is still giving us a better signal, primarily because of the strength of the jobs market. This is another case where the soft landing (remember a slowdown with no job losses) is helpful to the economy and markets.


A simple way that strategists have tried to capture this housing dynamic is in the acronym H.O.P.E. This stands for housing -> orders -> profits -> employment. The acronym covers how money/stimulus flows into and out of the economy. As lower rates make housing more appealing, the housing market picks up. This leads to a range of new orders for lumber, roofing, windows, copper and even furniture and landscaping. As companies start to process these new orders, they will start to generate profits. It is only after a company has been profitable for some time, that it starts to add workers and employment improves. This works in reverse too as a housing slowdown leads to a reduction in orders, declining profitability and then layoffs.

The third chart shows you visually this H.O.P.E. dynamic using the NAHB Index for housing, the ISM New Orders measure, S&P adjusted earnings per share and finally the yearly change in US labor force. As we look back through time, we can see that housing in white leads new orders in green. The next line to move is the profits in red and finally the employment in blue. The employment data is the most lagging of all of these, which is why I get less excited about it the first week of every month than everyone you may see in the media or politics.

Is the recent slowdown in housing a foreshadowing of tougher times ahead or was this just a blip in the data that will be reversed as mortgage rates come lower? This is a critical question that investors need to ask themselves.


Finally, we can pull this together by looking at the performance of the housing ETF (XHB) and the S&P 500 (SPY). You can see that this ETF ever-so-slightly leads the SPY into and out of not only recessions but also bigger moves higher and lower in the market. It was the rally in XHB from the late fall 2022 into the early part of 2023 that presaged the move higher in SPY for the year. It was also the fall in XHB from August through October of 2023 that led to the move lower in stocks across the board. Since then, the XHB has rallied sharply coincident with the strong rally in all assets into the end of 2023.

Can this rally continue? This is the question that should be top of mind for investors as we start 2024. As goes housing, so goes the US economy and the broader US stock market.


A Relative Report

One of my favourite tools to use is Relative Strength…

So let’s talk about it…

I like to keep my charts clean and straightforward, and I find by doing this, I am getting better information out of the charts… thus my analysis of the markets is better.

I’m not bringing anything new to the game here… this type of analysis has been around forever… but if you’re not using Relative Strength Comparisons (A/B), you are missing out on some important information!

So, all you need to do is divide the security/index (numerator) price by the base security/index (denominator).

The information that this provides us is when the line is rising, the security/index is outperforming the base security/index. When the line falls, the base security/index is outperforming the security/index. When it moves sideways, both prices are rising and falling equally percentage-wise.

Simple mathematics!

When identifying opportunities in the markets, the most straightforward solution can sometimes be the most effective.

Now that we know what relative strength is and why I like it…

Here’s a summary table:

Let’s dig into the charts…

Asset Allocation.

Stocks over Bonds: The trend continues to be in favour of stocks since coming off 2020 lows, with the ratio recently posting a fresh ATH.

Stocks over Commodities: Throughout 2023, this trend has ripped higher in favour of stocks, with the ratio at fresh 2-year highs.

Stocks over Cash: Stocks look ready to emerge even higher over cash after building a 2-year consolidation base.

Bonds over Commodities: Even bonds have moved higher vs commodities, with the ratio sitting at 2-year highs.

Bonds over Cash: It’s been an uneven transition, but bonds are gaining the upper hand versus cash.

Cash over Commodities: Commodities peaked in June 2022. Since then, the trend has rolled over and has continued to move lower.


Large over Mid & Small: With an impressive move throughout 2023 from large-cap stocks, it now looks like the trend may have switched in favour of mid and small caps since finding resistance. However, the trend is still in favour of large-cap.

Mega over Micro: We still see higher highs and lower lows for Mega vs Micro.

Market Cap over Equal: This trend favours market cap exposure. More recently, equal weight has dug in its heels at prior highs.

Growth over Value: Growth continues to hold up well versus Value, with the ratio now back to 2020 & 2021 highs.

Financials, Industrials & Technology: These sectors are near the top of the relative strength rankings.

US over International: The trend still favours US leadership and has been for over a decade. International stocks are showing no signs of strength yet.

Developed over Frontier over Emerging: Developed markets continue with their strong leadership versus EM & FM.


Corporates over Treasuries: Corporates remain below a falling trend versus Treasuries. The ratio is now at 12-year lows.

High Yield over High Quality: There is little evidence of stress in the economy, which has helped high yield continue this trend vs high grade.

Nominal Treasuries over Inflation Protection: The ratio has been in a sideways mess for the past 3-years. The trend is slightly in favour of nominal treasuries.

Short-term over Long-term: The short end of the curve is where you want to focus. However, the trend is under pressure.

Emerging Market Debt over US Debt: This ratio has traded sideways for two years with a slight bias to favouring EM debt.

US Debt over International Debt: US debt has been gaining strength versus international debt since finding a low in October 2023.

Commodities & Alternatives.

Precious Metals over Base Metals: The trend favours precious metals over base metals, but the ratio has been moving sideways throughout 2023.

Stocks over Gold: The ratio hasn’t moved much over the past 2-years. However, the trend favours stocks, with the ratio trading below its 200-day average.

Bonds over Gold: Gold remains in an uptrend versus bonds. This trend has been in place for the past 8-years.

US Dollar over Yen: The Yen has bounced at a logical area, but the trend has not turned in its favour just yet.

EM Currencies over US Dollar: EM currencies remain strong versus the US dollar, with the ratio trading well above its 200-day average.

Aussie Dollar over Yen: Strength from the Aussie Dollar as it nears 10-year highs.

Stocks over Real Estate: Real Estate continues to be under pressure, with a pattern of lower highs and lower lows versus stocks.

Before I finish up, always remember:

  • Remain flexible.
  • We can only work with the information that is available today.
  • Keep an open mind.
  • I can’t change the direction of the wind, but I can adjust my sails to always reach my destination.” — Jimmy Dean.


Primary Bull Market for SIL and GDX Signaled on 12/27/23

The table below summarizes the current state of the trend for the precious metals and their ETF miners.

There’s a buzz in the air about the USD. Precious metals making notable strides, the Swiss Franc following suit, and both stocks and crypto appear overextended but with a clear eagerness to climb further.

General Remarks:

In this post, I thoroughly explained the rationale behind using two alternative definitions to appraise secondary reactions.


A) Market situation if one appraises secondary reactions not bound by the three weeks dogma.

The primary trend for GDX and SIL turned bearish on 6/20/23. You may find an in-depth explanation HERE.

Following the 10/4/23 bear market lows, a rally unfolded that qualified as a secondary reaction, as explained HERE.

The setup for a primary bull market was explained in our 12/11/23 post.

On 12/19/23, SIL surpassed its secondary reaction highs (step #2 in the Table below). On 12/27/23, GDX confirmed, thus triggering a new primary bull market (Step #4).

So, the primary and secondary trends are now bullish. Finally, the miners are in sync with the precious metals. Such multimarket and multi-asset confirmation normally reinforces the bullish case.

The charts below show the most recent price action. The blue rectangles highlight the secondary reaction that started off the 10/4/23 bear market lows and ended on 12/1/23. The brown rectangles indicate the pullback that set up both ETFs for a primary bull market. The blue horizontal lines mark the 12/1/23 closing highs, which were the relevant price levels to be broken up. Additionally, past rallies amid the bear market, failing to meet the criteria for a secondary reaction, are represented by grey triangles.

B) Market situation if one sticks to the traditional interpretation demanding at least three weeks of movement to declare a secondary reaction.

I explained HERE that the primary trend was signaled as bearish on 6/20/23.

In this specific instance, the trend appraisal using the “long-term” version of the Dow Theory yields the same results as the “short-term” one. So, what I explained above applies fully to this section. The primary and secondary trends are bullish.


Manuel Blay

Manuel Blay is a lawyer and investor with a background in finance. He first became interested in the investment world in 1992, when he made a successful investment in a Spanish bank that was taken over by a larger institution a few...

Remembering Alan R. Shaw, CMT

In solemnity, we acknowledge the passing of a luminary within the field of Technical Analysis and a founding pillar of the CMT Association, Alan Shaw. With an impressive tenure spanning 46 years as a market technician on Wall Street, Alan Shaw’s retirement in 2000 marked the conclusion of an era. He not only held the distinguished position of former president of the CMT Association but was also a laureate of the CMT Association’s Annual Award.

The origins of the CMT Association can be traced back to Alan’s pivotal role as an instructor in the field of Technical Analysis at the New York Institute of Finance (NYIF) in 1967. It was here that the seeds of formalizing an organization dedicated to technical analysis were sown, thanks to Alan’s guidance and that of his contemporary, Bob Farrell. This organization, known today as the CMT Association, owes its existence to their vision.

Among Alan’s cherished adages was “Giants standing on the shoulders of giants,” a maxim he embodied throughout his illustrious career. His influence on contemporary study and application of technical analysis is immeasurable. Alan’s tutelage at NYIF not only enlightened students but also reached money managers and fundamental analysts worldwide, who sought his expertise. We now take for granted the electronic charting of securities, but in Alan’s early days on Wall Street, his renowned chart room at Smith Barney was the epicenter. There, his team meticulously maintained thousands of point and figure stock charts, laying the foundation for his work and the enlightenment of his clients regarding the potency of technical analysis.

While Alan drew inspiration from luminaries such as Ralph A. Rotnem, Director of Research at Harris, Upham & Co. (later merged with Smith Barney), Alexander Wheelan, John Magee, Edmund W. Tabell, and others, his enduring legacy within the technical analysis community lies in the cadre of analysts he mentored. These individuals, in their own right, have ascended to the status of giants in the field of technical analysis. Notable among them are Ralph Acampora, Gail M. Dudack, Marc Faber, John J. Murphy, Louise Yamada, Feliz Zulauf, and many more.

Remarkably, as recently as 2017, Alan graced the CMT Association’s Annual Symposium with his presence, imparting wisdom and continuing to shape the practice of technical analysis. His absence leaves a profound void within the community he played an instrumental role in nurturing over the past five decades. Alan Shaw’s memory will endure, and he shall be sorely missed.


Alvin Kressler

Executive Director, CMT Association

For more of Alan Shaw’s lasting impact, read this excerpt from The First Fifty Years The History of the Chartered Market Technicians Association 1973-2023, Ralph J. Acampora, CMT, Karen Benefiel, CMT, CPA and George A. Schade, Jr., CMT


Alvin Kressler

Alvin Kressler is Executive Director & CEO of the CMT Association. Alvin was previously Director of Research and Corporate Access at Bloomberg Tradebook.  Before joining Bloomberg, he was the Executive Director of The New York Society of Security Analysts (NYSSA). At over...