SINGAPORE (July 9): Although the Straits Times Index ended the shortened trading week of July 6-9 unchanged at 2,652, indicators have strengthened. Despite this, the index may not make spectacular moves. ADX which points to market direction is at 14, which is a low level. The lower ADX readings are, the more pronounced the sideways trend. In addition, volume shrank during July 6–9, as the STI strengthened.

On a positive note, the 50-day moving average continues to rise, and in the past four trading sessions it is up 9 points, or around 2 points a day. This indicator acts as a support line, and is currently at 2,616.

The oscillators such as quarterly momentum, short term stochastics and 21-day RSI are strengthening. Quarterly momentum has formed an uptrend (see chart 1), and is moving ahead of the market. It broke out earlier, and strengthened ahead of the STI. Short term stochastics is rising modestly, as is 21-day RSI (see chart 2).

The chart pattern is also showing resilience. The weight of the evidence suggests that prices should continue to gain ground, moving gradually towards 2,800, which would take the index above the declining 100-day moving average, currently at 2,660. 

Asian markets in general have strengthened, with some staging breakouts. They have lagged the US markets and are likely to diverge from the US markets. In the meantime, the S&P 500 is approaching a resistance area at the 3,200-3,300 range.  

In conclusion, the local market is likely to remain steady, with an all round firmer phase even if global and US markets take a volatile turn. This is because North Asian markets should continue to stay on their firmer footing.