Aetna Inc (NYSE: AET)

Aetna Inc. operates as a diversified health care benefits company in the United States. The company operates in three segments: Health Care, Group Insurance, and Large Case Pensions. The Health Care segment provides medical, pharmacy benefit management, dental, behavioral health, and vision plans on an insured basis, and an employer-funded or administrative basis. The Group Insurance segment provides life insurance products comprising group term life insurance, voluntary spouse and dependent term life insurance, group universal life, and accidental death and dismemberment insurance; disability insurance products; and long-term care insurance products, which offer benefits to cover the cost of care in private home settings, adult day care, assisted living, or nursing facilities. The Large Case Pensions segment manages various retirement products, including pension and annuity products for tax-qualified pension plans. The company’s customers include employer groups, individuals, college students, part-time and hourly workers, health plans, health care providers, governmental units, government-sponsored plans, labor groups, and expatriates.

Take a look at the 1-year chart of Aetna (NYSE: AET) below with added notations:

1-year chart of Aetna (NYSE: AET)

After running up to $85 in July, AET pulled back sharply into August. The stock followed that pullback with another run up to $85, and again, pulled back even further. The stock has now tested the $85 level again (green), and may be looking to finally break thru that $85 resistance. That break would also constitute a new 52-week high.

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The Tale of the Tape: AET has a 52-week resistance at $85. The possible long position for AET would be on a breakout above $85.

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

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