Over the three years that the Mother of All Bear Rallies has chugged steadily higher, the tedium of gratuitous ups and downs such as we have endured lately has always implied consolidation. In each and every instance, the broad averages marked time until there was sufficient good news — usually the latest bailout fraud perpetrated by the European Central Bank –to trigger off the kind of short-covering that alone can drive stocks through ceilings of supply. Will it be different this time? My guess is that the answer will be found by closely monitoring the vital signs of that Mother of All Bellwethers, Apple, which at recent, peak valuations was the largest company in the world. Subscribers and permabears pay heed: Rick’s Picks’ ‘Apple Watch’ has begun. Click here to follow the excitement in real time with a free trial subscription to Rick’s Picks.