While I still believe the stock market has a date with higher prices this year, the past few days have shown that the path is not likely to be smooth. Just a few days after the Dow Jones Industrial Average topped 20,000 for the first time, news from Washington cast a fearful shadow over the market.

The news changes hourly and can trigger emotional responses that end up being very wrong.

The markets themselves offer more objective evidence, and right now I see a few items that investors should monitor.

The first is interest rates. In December I took a look at long-dated Treasury yields and concluded they had topped out for the time being. The iShares 20+ Year Treasury Bond TLT  exchange-traded fund (ticker: TLT), which tracks long bond prices and moves inversely to interest rates, landed in a very major support zone (see Chart 1).

Chart 1

It was a combination of a six-year rising trendline and “regular” chart support from the major low set in 2015. Indeed, a few days later, the ETF bounced off that zone on its way to recapture 50% of the losses it suffered after the election. Unfortunately, it stalled there and headed back down to once again sit in that major support zone.

The inability for any market to move significantly higher after reaching a major support area is a bearish warning. Should the bond ETF break down, it would push long-term interest rates higher, and I suspect that would be a negative event for the stock market. This, despite market expectations for only two quarter-point federal-fund rate hikes this year.

The opposite end of the quality scale in the bond market also has a potential breakdown in play. Whereas Treasury bonds are considered to be default risk-free, high-yielding “junk” bonds do carry significant risk.

Major ETFs tracking junk bonds, such as iShares iBoxx $ High Yield Corporate Bond HYG), have already seen arguable breakdowns from the postelection rally (see Chart 2).

Chart 2

I say “arguable” because it is difficult to draw a clean trendline in the classical sense. But one look at the chart and it is easy to spot that a change has occurred. Plus, the current rally ran into resistance at the same level that stopped the previous rally in October. And now the ETF is just pennies away from breaking down below its January trading range.

All told, this is not a positive for stocks as it tells us that investors may be fleeing riskier assets.

Junk bonds can be the canary in the coal mine for the stock market.

The next market to watch is the U.S. dollar. The greenback has been in decline since the start of the year and took a hit this week on comments from one of the president’s advisors that the euro was undervalued. The U.S. dollar index, which measures the dollar against a basket of currencies and is about half-weighted in the euro, set its lowest level since December.

Technically, the dollar is now testing the long-term upside breakout it made last November (see Chart 3).

But there is very little room for error by dollar bulls here. Unless the market can stabilize here and bounce at least a little, we will have to conclude that the breakout failed. Failed bullish breakouts are another bearish sign.

Chart 3

The connection between the dollar and the stock market is not direct. A weak dollar does benefit exporters, but at some point it will reflect a general lack of demand for domestic assets, whether they are stocks, bonds, or products.

Again, I still believe stocks will be higher at some point this year, but the disruptive nature of current politics can easily spook investors and provide the excuse some need for a stock-market correction to begin.

Technical evidence, such as market breadth, is still good, but the warnings coming from bonds and the dollar should not be ignored.