Finding the Right Stocks and Sectors

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Finding the Right Stocks and Sectors

Top-down investing is focused on analyzing the status of the economy, the strength of various sectors, and then selecting the best companies within those sectors to optimize profits. If the economy is doing well, investors may choose sectors and equities within those sectors that are doing well. Even if the economy isn’t doing well, there may be sectors and firms that are outperforming the overall trend.

Investors might try to outperform the market by finding the hottest sectors driving the market upward and picking the finest stocks within those sectors.

Key Takeaways

  • During an upswing, discover the hottest sectors that are driving the market higher and the finest stocks inside those sectors.
  • Investors should discover a trend utilizing different time periods within charts before selecting a sector or business.
  • Determine which industries are outperforming the broader market.
  • Find and purchase the best-performing stocks in the best-performing sectors.

Understanding How to Find the Right Stocks and Sectors

If your study reveals that the market is in an upswing, known as a bull market, and that it is likely to continue for some time, you should purchase companies with the greatest potential for substantial gains. However, just because the market is rising does not indicate that all equities will do well, and some will outperform others significantly.

If we are in a bear market or if prices fall, the investor may participate in short selling. Short selling is a sophisticated technique that speculates on stock price drops and should only be explored by experienced investors. Short sellers find and sell equities that are projected to perform poorly, earning a profit when prices fall. Although this post will concentrate on uptrends, the same ideas apply to downtrends.

Multiple Time Frames

Investors should discover a trend utilizing different time periods within charts before selecting a sector or business. Charts may assist investors determine the trend of a sector or stock. It is critical to understand the time period or length of time that a trend has been in existence. Trends are classified as main, intermediate, or short-term.

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There are, however, other time ranges to consider. A weekly or monthly chart, for example, may suggest an upswing, but a shorter time frame, such as a daily chart, may show a correction. As a consequence, while evaluating several time periods, keep an eye out for contradictory patterns within a sector or company. Make a note of the principal trend and whether it looks to be robust or losing steam. To identify the trend, use a long-term chart, and then utilize intermediate-term and short-term charts to assist drill down to the precise entry and exit levels.

Pick the Right Sectors

Certain sectors perform better than others, so if the market is rising, we want to purchase equities in the best-performing sectors. In other words, we aim to invest in sectors that outperform the market as a whole. For example, the technology sector may be up 10% compared to a 3% gain in the general market, as measured by a benchmark such as the S&P 500 index.

We can identify the hottest sectors by comparing many time periods. These sectors are not only doing well presently, but have also shown strength in the past. The time periods chosen by investors will be determined by their investing time horizon. Next, we choose a sector that is among the best-performing. Diversification may be achieved by investing in a number of the top industries.

We may also examine the chart of an exchange-traded fund (ETF) for a certain industry. The ETF would have a portfolio of assets that follow the equities in a certain sector. A trendline should be used to define the trend, with the ETF demonstrating strength as it climbs off the line. In an uptrend, the trendline simply links all of the higher lows (or the low points in the corrections).Each corrective low in an uptrend should contact the upward sloping trendline. If the trend continues, there should be a rebound off the trendline and in the trend’s direction.

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Pick the Right Stocks

Once we’ve discovered an upswing in a sector that’s beating the market, we need to figure out which stocks to purchase inside that sector. We might just purchase a basket of companies that represent the whole industry and hope for the best. However, we can improve by selecting the finest stocks within that industry. Just because a sector is rising does not guarantee that all of the stocks within that sector will outperform. However, a handful of those equities are likely to outperform, and those are the ones we want in our portfolio.

Individual stock identification follows the same procedure as sector analysis. Identify the companies with the highest price appreciation within each sector utilizing several periods to ensure that the stock is doing well over time. The equities we desire are those that have done the best across two or three periods. Examine the charts of the best performers and draw trend lines on the chart to clearly indicate the price trend. Profit goals based on chart patterns should be developed in order to discover prospective price gains while also taking into account the danger of losses.

Special Considerations

It is vital to realize that other aspects must be considered when purchasing a stock. Other factors to consider include:


The quantity of shares exchanged such that a stock may be purchased or sold without delay is referred to as liquidity. When there is liquidity, there are many buyers and sellers. Buying stocks in small quantities makes it difficult to sell at a reasonable price if a speedy liquidation is necessary. Unless you are an experienced trader, avoid equities with trading volumes of more than a few hundred thousand shares each day.


Many investors avoid high-priced equities in favor of lower-priced companies. It’s better to trade equities that are at least $5, preferably more. This is not to imply that there aren’t “excellent” cheap stocks or “poor” pricey stocks, but don’t avoid a company because it’s costly or purchase a stock because it’s inexpensive in dollar terms.

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ETF trading has gone a long way in the last few years. If you don’t want to own numerous individual equities, you may be able to discover an ETF that produces comparable outcomes. If wanted, particular ETFs that can fairly mimic what individual equities would have been chosen may be purchased.

Exiting and Rotating

Of course, there is no assurance that you will generate remarkable profits, but this technique does provide the opportunity to earn higher-than-market returns. Positions must be monitored to ensure that the sectors and equities remain in favor with the market. Also, be mindful of overtrading, which may result in exorbitant fees; this is why we use various periods.

If your stocks or sectors begin to lose favor over various periods, it is time to rotate into sectors that are doing well—a process known as sector rotation. When to exit holdings, your market research should lead you. When important trend lines within equities or sectors under consideration are broken, it’s time to leave and hunt for fresh trading opportunities.

The Bottom Line

This method does need some trading turnover, since sectors and top companies within those sectors fluctuate over time. The goal is to be long in stocks that are leading the market upward during bull markets and short in companies that are driving the market down during bear markets assuming you are not adverse to short selling. We do this by identifying the hottest sectors (for a bull market) throughout time and identifying the best-performing equities within that sector. We have a strong possibility of outperforming the market by continuously moving assets into the best-performing companies.

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