When you hear "the market is up," it doesn't mean everything is up ... and it certainly doesn't mean everything is up anywhere near somewhat equally.
For instance, right now, the Standard & Poor's 500 is up about 14 percent year to date and up around 20 percent over the past year.
However, if you look at the various market sectors, you'll see that some sectors will soon get overheated and some areas have been overly pummeled.
Let's first take a look at what's been hot, but could soon be the sectors to avoid.
Right now, the "momentum chasers" are loving brokers and banks. Over the last 200 days, the NYSE Arca Securities Broker/Dealer Index ($XBD) is up right at 44 percent. The KBW Bank Index ($BKX) is up over 20 percent, and the NYSE Arca Biotechnology Index ($BTK) is up around 32 percent over that same period.
Investors are so enamored with these sectors right now that they're not even close to looking for an exit point. However, that's to their detriment. When sectors exceed the overall market averages by that much, you always want to be mindful of that and look for any weakness coming in the sectors — technical breakdowns on the charts, fundamental overvaluations, etc.
On the other hand, there are some areas of the financial universe that have gotten pummeled very hard lately. For instance, the PHLX Gold/Silver Sector Index ($XAU) is down over 50 percent and investors seem to think that these metals are never coming back. That's yet another fallacy that will lead them astray.
Instead, they should be looking for the technical in this sector to firm up soon and once it does, they should look into gold and silver. They could do the same for gold stocks, too, from a technical and fundamental standpoint.
Gold stocks are even more hated than gold is right now ... so much so that when comparing the Barron's Gold Mining Index to gold, you'll see that gold miners are the cheapest they've ever been relative to gold since this index was created back in 1939. Therefore, gold stocks pose quite a bit of value, so investors should be watchful for when these sectors begin to firm up and turn higher.
But what is typical? It's typical for investors to think that the brokers, banks and biotech won't come down for a very long time and that gold and silver may never come back. So they're not interested at all in looking in gold or silver's direction.
OK, as a bonus, here's another sector that investors should be watching ... for a turning point higher: oil services. This sector is only up around 8 percent over the last 200 days, which is only a fraction of what the overall market is up.
Watch exchange-traded funds that track these sectors or Google these sectors so that you can see which stocks are being tracked in these indexes. Then weed through them to see which ones are the most fundamentally sound. Then once you know which ones are the fundamental gems of the group, keep track of their charts for turning points higher.
But one thing I've found from doing sector analyses is that it helps me to be not only cautious and alert to what's hot, but also to what could soon be "not hot." Therefore, I'm aware that I need to be looking for an exit point while everyone else is still drooling over the sector.
The same goes for what's been beaten down. You'll find that the next thing that's about to be hot is what used to be "not hot." So disregard the bad news that you see in the media and instead look for upward turning points on the charts.
Remember, the news will only improve for a sector once the sector has long turned up. In other words, the news media lags the times you should be buying and they are also too late in drawing your attention to when you should be selling.
So I hope this helps to give you one more way to look at markets to see what's getting too hot or overly pummeled so that you can protect your gains that you've made and also know where to look for fresh buying opportunities.
About the Author: Sean Hyman
Sean Hyman is a member of the Moneynews Financial Brain Trust. Click Here to read more of his articles. He is also the editor of Ultimate Wealth Report. Discover more by Clicking Here Now.
© 2013 Moneynews. All rights reserved.