HCA Holdings Inc (NYSE: HCA)

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HCA Holdings, Inc. provides health care services in the United States. The company owns, manages, or operates hospitals, freestanding surgery centers, diagnostic and imaging centers, radiation and oncology therapy centers, rehabilitation and physical therapy centers, and various other facilities. Its general acute care hospitals provide medical and surgical services, including inpatient care, intensive care, cardiac care, diagnostic services, and emergency services, as well as outpatient services comprising outpatient surgery, laboratory, radiology, respiratory therapy, cardiology, and physical therapy; and psychiatric hospitals offer therapeutic programs, such as child, adolescent, and adult psychiatric care, as well as adult and adolescent alcohol and drug abuse treatment and counseling. The company’s general, acute care hospitals provide a range of services to accommodate such medical specialties as internal medicine, general surgery, cardiology, oncology, neurosurgery, orthopedics, and obstetrics.

To review HCA’s stock, please take a look at the 1-year chart of HCA (HCA Holdings, Inc.) below with my added notations:

HCA

HCA has created a two important price levels to watch. First, HCA has formed a clear resistance at $34 (navy), which would also be a 52-week high breakout if the stock could manage to break above it. In addition, the stock has commonly found support at $30. Eventually, HCA will have to either break the $30 support or the $34, 52-week high resistance.

The Tale of the Tape: HCA has a common $30 support and a $34, 52-week resistance. A long trade could be made on either a breakout above the $34 resistance or on a pullback down to the $30 support. A break below the support would be an opportunity to enter a short trade.

Before making any trading decision, decide which side of the trade you believe gives you the highest probability of success. Do you prefer the short side of the market, long side, or do you want to be in the market at all? If you haven’t thought about it, review the overall indices themselves. For example, take a look at the S&P 500. Is it trending higher or lower? Has it recently broken through a key resistance or support level? Making these decisions ahead of time will help you decide which side of the trade you believe gives you the best opportunities.

No matter what your strategy or when you decide to enter, always remember to use protective stops and you’ll be around for the next trade. Capital preservation is always key!

Good luck!

Christian Tharp, CMT