Moody’s Corporation (NYSE: MCO)

Moody’s Corporation provides credit ratings; and credit, capital markets, and economic related research, data, and analytical tools worldwide. It operates through two segments, Moody’s Investors Service and Moody’s Analytics. The Moody’s Investors Service segment publishes credit ratings on various debt obligations and entities that issue such obligations comprising various corporate and governmental obligations, structured finance securities, and commercial paper programs. The Moody’s Analytics segment develops products and services that support financial analysis and risk management activities of institutional participants in financial markets; and distributes research and data, such as research on debt issuers, industry studies, and commentary on topical credit related events.

Take a look at the 1-year chart of Moody’s (NYSE: MCO) below with added notations:

1-year chart of Moody's (NYSE: MCO)

MCO had been trending lower since its July peak. In February, the stock began to rally. That rally has taken a break since the middle of March as MCO started trading in a sideways range. While in that sideways move, the stock has formed a common pattern known as a rectangle. A minimum of (2) successful tests of the support and (2) successful tests of the resistance will give you the pattern.

The MCO rectangle pattern has formed a resistance at $98 (red), and a $92 support (green). At some point the stock will have to break one of the two levels.

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The Tale of the Tape: MCO is trading within a rectangle pattern. The possible long positions on the stock would be either on a pullback to $92 or on a breakout above $98. The ideal short opportunity would be on a break below $92.

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

Follow me on Twitter: @cmtstockcoach