9:00am (EST)

The market recovered on Thursday following the week long drubbing by the bears and came close to reclaiming prior support levels.  The bears kept the action close until our midday update but surrendered more ground in the second half of trading.  The major indexes are down 1%, on average, for the week so there is still work to do if the bulls want to get back to even. 

The Dow gained 72 points, or 0.5%, to finish at 13,485.  The blue-chips traded to a high of 13,522 but fell short of reclaiming the 13,500 level.  If cleared today, the real test comes at clearing 13,600.  There is still risk down to 13,350 on a pullback.

The S&P 500 added 14 points, or 1%, to settle at 1,447.  The index tested a high of 1,450.20 but failed to hold this level into the close.  This still leaves the door open for a test down to 1,425 but 1,475 comes back into play if 1,450 is cleared on the close.

The Nasdaq zoomed 43 points, or 1.4%, to end at 3,136.  Tech reached a peak of 3,142 but failed to clear our 3,150 resistance target which was prior support.  The close back above 3,100 was bullish but if it doesn’t hold today, there is risk down to 3,050 next week.

The Russell 2000 popped 10 points higher, or 1.1%, to close at 843 while the S&P 500 Volatility Index ($VIX, $14.84, down 1.97) dropped 12% and is back below 15.

There were a couple of noteworthy earnings reports last night after the bell which we will cover today in our afternoon update once the stocks open for trading.  Nike (NKE, $96.00, up $0.51) was down $3.50, or 3.7%, in extended trading last night while Research In Motion (RIMM, $7.14, up $0.14) surged 20% to $8.60, up $1.46.  Both companies beat Wall Street’s expectations although RIMM reported a loss.

Futures are showing a lower open as we head to press and look like this:  Dow (-76); S&P 500 (-8); Nasdaq 100 (-11).  Subscribers, check the Members Area for the updates.