Barchart.com's Chart of the Day - Value Line Arithmetic Index

Today is not a great day for stock picking. I always like to know where the market is so I use the Value Line Arithmetic Index ($VLA) as my benchmark. It is an index that gives the largest 1700 stock equal weight. If the index is rising that means more than 50% of the stocks in the Index are rising and if it's falling that means more than 50% of the stocks in the index are falling.

I use the stock price against the Trend Spotter and the 20, 50 , 100 and 200 day moving averages and it gives me a pretty good snapshot of where the market stands. Look at today's chart:

VLANow is a good time to be sitting on the side lines in cash, keeping your powder dry and waiting for the market to tell you when it's safe to come back in. If you go in and out at the 200 day moving average you might not get rich, but you sure won't get burnt.