Market Overview

TD Ameritrade Investors Had A Record-Breaking January

TD Ameritrade Investors Had A Record-Breaking January

After gaining more than 65 percent over 2017 to reach a new all-time high of 8.59 by the end of the year, TD Ameritrade's Investor Movement Index (IMX), which measures TDA client buying and selling activity to arrive at a relative sentiment score, made another record-breaking move in the first month of 2018. January marked the index's biggest downward move in three years to 7.79.

Buying's Still High

Despite the drop in overall sentiment, TD Ameritrade customers were still net buyers of equity over the month. According to the broker, Nasdaq components, Inc. (NASDAQ: AMZN), Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ: MSFT) and Facebook Inc. (NASDAQ: FB) remained popular buys. However, lower relative volatility made the big tech names less appealing.

Other historically common buys, like Bank of America Corp. (NYSE: BAC) and Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (NYSE: BRK-B), also maintained their place in many investor portfolios.

Rotation Kicks In

Another group of stocks that saw investor attention were industrials such as Caterpillar Inc. (NYSE: CAT), Boeing Co (NYSE: BA) and General Electric Company (NYSE: GE). Each benefited from strong momentum coming out of December, with the former two reaching new all-time highs in the month.

Additionally, all three might have earned their place among TDA investors' portfolios into a political year many expect to revolve around infrastructure, as was the anticipated focus of President Trump's first State of the Union address.

Profit Taking Taking The Reins

Investors also took advantage of the month's diminished volatility to reap some profits among their more volatile holdings. The IMX showed biotech names Gilead Sciences, Inc. (NASDAQ: GILD) and Teva Pharmaceuticals Industries Ltd. (NYSE: TEVA), both of which saw double-digit percentage growth over the month, were heavily sold. Positions in energy and material stocks ConocoPhillips (NYSE: COP) and Arconic Inc (NYSE: ARNC) were similarly trimmed as commodity prices gained some lost ground and industrial stocks showed strong quarterly numbers.

Other stocks that were net sold included Sirius XM Holdings Inc. (NASDAQ: SIRI), which broke over $6 for the first time, and Macy's Inc (NYSE: M), which suffered slightly from disappointing holiday sales numbers, but upbeat FY18 guidance. Investors also lightened their position in QUALCOMM Inc. (NASDAQ: QCOM) which made further attempts at acquiring Broadcom Ltd. (NASDAQ: AVGO).


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Posted-In: IMX Investor Movement Index TD AmeritradeNews Markets General Best of Benzinga