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BALTIMORE (Stockpickr) -- Put down the 10-K filings and the stock screeners. It's time to take a break from the traditional methods of generating investment ideas. Instead, let the crowd do it for you.
From hedge funds to individual investors, scores of market participants are turning to social media to figure out which stocks are worth watching. It's a concept that's known as "crowdsourcing," and it uses the masses to identify emerging trends in the market.
Crowdsourcing has long been a popular tool for the advertising industry, but it also makes a lot of sense as an investment tool. After all, the market is completely driven by the supply and demand, so it can be valuable to see what names are trending among the crowd.
While some fund managers are already trying to leverage social media resources like Twitter to find algorithmic trading opportunities, for most investors, crowdsourcing works best as a starting point for investors who want a starting point in their analysis. Today, we'll leverage the power of the crowd to take a look at some of the most active stocks on the market today.
These "most active" names are the most heavily-traded names on the market -- and often, uber-active names have some sort of a technical or fundamental catalyst driving investors' attention on shares. That's especially true now that earnings season is officially underway. And when there's a big catalyst, there's often a trading opportunity.
Without further ado, here's a look at today's stocks.
Nearest Resistance: N/A
Nearest Support: $32
Catalyst: Earnings Surprise
Facebook (FB) is busting through to levels not seen since last summer on the heels of strong earnings results for the second quarter. The firm earned a profit of $333 million -- or 13 cents per share -- besting investors' very muted expectations. Even though analysts had been hoping to see 14 cents in earnings, market participants were clearly surprised by the numbers that the social network posted, pushing shares to new 52-week highs. Shares were nearly 30% higher at the opening bell.
Making new highs is significant from an investor psychology standpoint because it means that everyone who has bought shares in the last year is sitting on gains. As a result, the "back to even" mentality is less of a concern than it would be for a name with a higher proportion of shareholders sitting on losses.
Investors who aren't risk-averse can consider putting on a position here.
Nearest Resistance: $32
Nearest Support: $27
Catalyst: Guidance Scare
Investors in Broadcom (BRCM) are seeing the exact opposite response to this week's earnings call. Shares of the chipmaker fell like a brick on Tuesday, following guidance that pointed to more losses on the way. All told, shares are down 20% since Monday's open, a massive drop for a stock that hadn't exactly been keeping pace with the S&P 500 for the first part of the year.
Broadcom is seeing high volume early in today's session as shares bounce -- not a big surprise given how far and how fast shares have slipped this week. From a technical standpoint, BRCM had been forming a head and shoulders pattern with a neckline at $32. Once that level broke on Tuesday, the complete lack of bids for shares in yesterday's session wasn't a huge surprise.
Buyers should continue to beware until BRCM can establish some semblance of support again.
Nearest Resistance: $66
Nearest Support: $61
Catalyst: Q3 Profit Increase
Qualcomm (QCOM) is up more than 4% this morning, after the firm posted adjusted earnings of $1.03 per share; Wall Street was expecting 91 cents. That profit surprise along with strong guidance expectations are helping to fuel buying in the communications technology giant, even if the technicals could look a lot better.
In the very short-term, QCOM has triggered an inverse head and shoulders pattern, but it's practically reached its price objective today. Resistance at $66 should be a more important litmus test for upward mobility in QCOM's share price right now.
To see these stocks in action, check out the at Most-Active Stocks portfolio on Stockpickr.
-- Written by Jonas Elmerraji in Baltimore.
At the time of publication, author had no positions in stocks mentioned.
Jonas Elmerraji, CMT, is a senior market analyst at Agora Financial in Baltimore and a contributor to TheStreet. Before that, he managed a portfolio of stocks for an investment advisory returned 15% in 2008. He has been featured in Forbes , Investor's Business Daily, and on CNBC.com. Jonas holds a degree in financial economics from UMBC and the Chartered Market Technician designation.
Follow Jonas on Twitter @JonasElmerraji