If your life savings are in energy shares this might be a good time to at least place sell stop orders.

If your life savings are in energy shares this might be a good time to at least place sell stop orders.

I have taken a good bit of criticism for suggesting the stock market topped in 2014. The Transports did top then, dropping 30 percent, and then making a new high. Well, that early warning indicator is flashing a danger signal again. Transports topped March 1, along with the small cap Russell 2000. Moving averages on both have crossed to the downside.

This column last week April 14, 2017.

Julius Caesar was assassinated March 15, 44 BC. That became an important date in the Roman Empire which, unknown at the time, was peaking in its world power. Our warning last week is was borne out by the markets this week. And the Ides of March continue to be important for our markets today. The dot.com peak occurred in March, 2000, with the NASD at a then record 5,000. The bottom of the markets during the 2008-09 meltdown occurred on March 9, 2009. The bottom of the oil market occurred a year ago February 11, 2016, just a month shy of mid-March.

Last week we noted the increasing weakness in the energy sector. Yesterday, Wednesday, April 19, 2017, Brent crude dropped 3.33%. West Texas Intermediate WTIC dropped 3.78% that day. These drops erased two weeks of gains.

On April 14 I suggested we closely watch support for Anadarko APC at 60 and Apache APA at 50. Those supports were breached with the two stocks closing at $59.13 and $49.19. Both are "oversold" on a daily basis and possibly those levels are a throw over prior to a bottom but the huge on day reversal in the underlying oil price suggests otherwise.

In the S & P Energy sector only 26.47% of stocks are now in a bullish formation and that indicator hit a new low for this move Wednesday.

And as I scan the dozens of charts I keep on stockcharts.com, it is apparent this is a world wide event. China National Offshore oil CEO dropped 1.8% April 19. Conoco COP and Chevron CVX has similar declines.

Two strong performers in the Eagle Ford Permian Basin have also come off significant highs. EOG from 108 in December to 93 Wednesday. Diamondback FANG (ya’ gotta love that West Texas stock symbol!) has trended sideway since December but dropped 2.5% Wednesday.

The Energy Service ETF XES is down from $24.50 last December to $18.44 losing a fourth of its value in five months.

Most investing sites interpret such news incorrectly. They believe lower energy prices help the economy. Yet high energy prices of 2014 are a signal that the economy can actually afford higher oil prices. Indeed those sites today suggest that energy is leading the overall stock market lower.

Both the Dow Industrials and the Transports peaked March 1 along with the Russell 2000. Since then all exhibit the stair step downward pattern.

Copper prices are so important the metal is referred to as Dr. Copper in financial circles. Copper peaked in February and dropped 1.41% Wednesday. The Commodity Research Bureau Index dropped 1.41% Wednesday.

With all this action on April 19, is that somehow a significant date in history?

•The American Revolution began with the Battles of Lexington and Concord on April 19, 1775.

•The Baltimore Riot of 1861 occurred April 109 with attacks on US Army Troops.

•On that date in 1956 Grace Kelly marries Prince Rainier of Monaco.

•On that date in 1971 Charles Manson was found guilty of the Sharon Tate murder.

•1993 FBI siege of the Branch Davidians kills 81 people.

•1995 Oklahoma City Bombing.

•2011 Boston Marathon Bombing.

There are many other historic occurrences on April 19, but this serves to make the point. So far the mainstream financial press marks all this as a correction. But the 17-year cycle marking a top in 2000, a low in 1983, and a top in 1966 is making its return known.

Follow Professor Elam at http://www.themarketperspective.com