Transports stocks are coming off their best first half since 1997.

The Dow transports rallied 19% in the first six months of the year, though the bulk of those gains were made in the first quarter followed by a stretch of consolidation in the last few months.

Matt Maley, chief market strategist at Miller Tabak, is now watching the group closely for its next move.

“We’ve definitely seen this divergence develop here in the last six or seven weeks with the transportation index underperforming; it’s down about 6%, while the S&P and the rest of the stock market has moved up slightly,” Maley told CNBC’s “Trading Nation” on Thursday.

Maley notes that much of the recent weakness has been tied to the airline stocks, which have taken a hit on concerns over the delta variant and a resurgence in Covid cases in some corners of the globe. JetBlue, Southwest and Alaska Air, for example, are all down more than 11%…

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