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This is options expiration week (OPEX). OPEX weeks have an upward bias, but January has not been one of the stronger OPEX weeks. The S&P is likely to hold up through the week.

Here is a screen of stocks that have performed best in the coming period. To select some shares for short-term trades, the following strategy is employed. The best-performers in the chosen time period with at least 20 years of price data are calculated and are presented below. The issues are ranked by the percentage of time periods in which the stock rose.

Best Performing Stocks from January 16th to January 23rd  

From this list, the stocks or ETFs are screened for relative strength and by dynamic cycles. The latter term refers to the most active cycles that are generating profits now.

Valero Energy Corporation VLO is ranked seventh. January has been the second strongest month for the stock, up 68% of the time for an average gain of almost 6%. The expected return is the third highest on the list. Each trading day in the coming week has shown a positive expected return over the last 24 years. From January 15th through February 1st, the stock has risen almost 67% of the time for an average gain of almost 5%. The weekly graph below reveals a supportive technical picture. There are higher lows in momentum and price has broken above a falling trend line. Valero is a member of the strong energy sector. The stock is likely to move closer to $90 or higher.

 Chart 1

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F5 is on the screens as an exceptional performer for the week. From the 13th through the 25th, the stock has risen 68% of the time for an average 7.54% gain. This is the highest expected return on the screen.

Technically, the picture is attractive. Relative strength is strong and the stock is oversold. The shares are likely to rise closer to $244-$245. Sell at the end of the week because the earnings report early in the following week is likely to be met with selling.

Chart 2

Source: Forbes

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