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Archive for 2006

Weekend Reading – Unfinished

Note to members:

As an experiment, I will be going more into detail as to my thought process based on the "Give a fish – Teach to fish" philosophy as my goal here is to build a robust community of sharp traders who can help each other spot market opportunities.

That means that I will have a lot of maybes here and things I am watching develop so always feel free to ask me later if I still like a trade or if things are developing the way I want.  On the big site, I couldn’t do stuff like that because I would get accused of being "wishy washy" or whatever but reality is that I watch things for days, weeks, months… years sometimes before I think it’s actually the right moment for a trade (see "The Man Who Planted Trees").

If this confuses more people than it helps I’ll reconsider, so let me know!

Thanks,

- Phil

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Great article by Shlomo Greenberg in Seeking Alpha on CHKP!  I’m very sorry I missed this one as they were a hell of a bargain in August at $17.  At the moment, I have to agree with C, who initiated them at neutral on Friday as the company took a sharp turn off  a 33% gain and is more likely to give up 1/3 of that gian, to $20 before consolidating for another move up.

I like the April $20 puts for .45 as a conrarian play (but not if the stock or the broad market is moving up) and I think we should keep our eye open for maybe $1.20 or less as a nice entry (10%) on the April $22.50s but, with 7,333 open contracts already, I would be selling way before we get to April!  If the stock moves up quickly, they might make a fun spread with the Jan $22.50s, which can be sold for .55.

So the move is to open a small position in the April $20 puts in anticipation of protecting the $22.50s when they get cheap.  With a small entry on the puts, if it gets away from us, we don’t care (well, we always care a little) but if the stock drops and gives us a shot at the $22.50s for a buck we can DD on the $20 puts (perhaps a .70 average entry) giving us a cheap…
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Weekly Wrap-Up

Well it’s been a crazy week! 

Getting the new site up and running was harder than I thought but we are in very good shape now and got off to a real bang with a huge week for picks.

Luckily we got the macro picture right for the most part and that guided us through a scary early part of the week.  My suggestion that we just let the US dollar burn (inflate) to fuel the market rally was my most controversial article since "Inflation Nation" article earlier in the month – I guess people really don’t like inflation…

Still I was confident enough in our heroic team of Super Banker and Chair Man (of the Fed) as they headed off to China to do nothing (which is just what the markets wanted) other than maintain the status quo (we buy stuff – they buy dollars) and put on a show for the international press corp!

We wisely took some Flight Insurance before departing and our insurance picks did just what they were supposed to do, they went up when the rest of the market stalled early in the week.  Our stock of the year selection, BRK.A in fact, gained $5,700 since Sunday’s mention while junior selection BRK.B added 6.7% for the week!

Monday I said "There is almost no point trading today" and there wasn’t - but we did get some nice entries on calls as we kept the faith!  We had a flawed forecast from Forrester that scared people out of tech.  My premise on Monday that 213K open oil contracts were far too many played out at the end of the week (down to 101K at yesterday’s close) but crude finished up for the week anyway.

Tuesday I predicted a "gauntlet" of economic news and recommended "patience Daniel-san."  But perhaps we should have given more weight to the brewing IRS crackdown on options shenanigansWe dismissed Tuesday’s quick dip as an air pocket – attempting to force us to eject so the markets could take off without us and we did not buy it!  The Manufacturer’s report was our confirmation that things looked better than they seemed.

We started Wednesday off checking our calculations and determined we were indeed …
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Inside Scoop on the Apple IPhone and Other Patents!

The IPhone is coming, the IPhone is coming, the IPhone is coming!  …On Monday???

  ipod phone 

Well, according to Gizmodo who, I am certain, are just looking for publicity.  This is starting to remind me of when Dean Kamen told us that "IT" would revolutionize transportation, reshape cities, resolve the energy crisis etc. and everyone speculated on everything "IT" could possibly be, from properly recounting the Florida ballots to cold fusion but, in the end, it turned out to be a scooter that very rich people can play polo on!

While I don’t think the IPhone will turn out to be a Segway-sized disappointment, I’m very concerned that I won’t be able to play polo on it and, with expectations running as high as they are it had better at least cure cancer!

One cool thing that is in the works from Apple is a patent they filed earlier in the year to embed "microscopic image sensors" in an LCD screen, effecively turning your monitor or, more importantly, your phone’s screen, into a camera – allowing for true face-to-face communications!

Apple Notebook with Dock

And have you ever wondered why Apple insists on keeping that huge amount of space at the bottom half of their laptops?  Well here’s the embedded docking station they filed a patent on!

Now if that were a cell-capable IPod you could get web access anywhere in the world….  Interesting! 

According to Kevin Rose, of Digg, the IPhone will have the following features:

  • January launch on "all" providers, both CDMA and GSM
  • Extremely small form factor
  • Two battery design (with single charger) — one for playing music, the other for phone functions
  • Flash memory: 4GB for $249, 8GB for $449
  • "Slide-out keyboard"
  • Possibly touchscreen

Apparently the Apple guys are not up on the KISS rule of product design but we’ll see how this all meshes together.  Surely the fear of Apple has been holding down Motorola, who have already shifted their marketing focus to the lower end, ceding the high ground to a product that doesn’t exist yet from their former (or maybe still)
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Friday Already?

This is a terrible time for a weekend!

We finally got the party started, on Monday we strapped in for a rough ride, on Tuesday I had to tell the kids to calm down and wait for the launch while that nasty Fed went away, we ejected the whiners, we calculated our new trajectory (now that we had removed the excess mass), rolled our problems into next month, and yesterday, we fired up the engines and boldly set off where no market had gone before!

Who could have predicted that?  Oh yeah, I did (pat, pat).

So we should end the week with a bang (hopefully not the bad kind!) as the markets have slingshotted into orbit and are heading straight to the moon!  Inflation remains very tame with the CPI unchanged from last month but down to 2.6% for the year from a 2.9% peak in August.

If we can just ignore keep ignoring our amazing deficit for another month, we may safely enter a much higher orbit with our sites firmly on the 15,000 level for next year.  This image sums up my premise for the week quite nicely:

 

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Private Note: By the way, I forget what day it was but I finally told Tom the Trader he was no longer welcome as I found his ridiculous panic mongering to be detrimental during what I considered to be a mild pullback.  I hope you guys don’t mind as he is only the second person I have ever done that to (the first was AA man, for profanity and general idiocy). 

While I value contrary opinions, having some guy come on and BS about how right he is (absolutely untrue if you check his record) and then telling you to buy puts on everything and pointing to every little downward wiggle as more reason to bail was just too much for me to allow as I do feel some responsibility to all the newbies who read us and take that sort of thing seriously….

==================================

Well Asia seems happy about it with pretty strong gains across the board as Japan is having a “soft landing” of their own and India picked up another 127 points as the Hang Seng seems determined to leave them all in the dust.

You can tell we’re in a huge rally when the big web sites slow down…
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UNFINISHED! Yes Virginia, there is a Valero Rule

VLO has certainly take a turn for the worse of late, currently trading at exactly 0% higher than it was last Dec 14th.

Yet fellow Group members XOM, CVX and COP are up around 30% over that time with the vast majority of that gain coming since October 1st.

Looking at our partial group chart, we can see what a fantastic leading indicator Valero was on the way to the bottom in February:

  • It turned nicely and gave us a great heads up to go long on 2/16
  • It then gave us a perfect top signal on 4/25
  • Another good bottom as it led the way on 6/21
  • A clear double top as it gapped down on 8/10
  • Followed MUCH later by the rest of the goup who all bottomed in late October.

While Valero clearly made a weak Fibonnaci 33% retracement of the 45% rule (it was up 25% on 8/2, down 15% on 9/25, the majors have gone hog wild during the stock rally.

Why?





Thrilling Thursday Wrap-Up

Whoo-hoo!  What a day!

First of all – welcome to my new site!  I’m really happy to be here and I hope you will be too.  I’m going to lay out some ground rules, which I will make up as I go along and change as I see fit but at least we can get started.

  1. Never talk about stock club!  This is for us, these trades are for us, some of these trades will not work with too many people in them so sharing is not caring (for the other members).
  2. You will always hear it here first!  From this moment forward – all posts start here.  I am going to experiment with posting unfinished posts here and you guys need to let me know if you like it or hate it but I am done with a lot of stuff hours before you see it on the main site so I thought it might help.
  3. Participate!  This is a dictatorial democracy – that means I always want to hear what you have to say before I do whatever I want.  There are no dumb questions, only dumb people (wait, scratch that – reverse it, thanks).
  4. Have Fun!  I’m going to have fun so you may as well to.  If there is anything I can do to make this site better let me know – you are a guest in my house and I want all of you to feel like family.  If you are reading this you are one of my original readers and that means a lot to me – we’re going to do something that’s never been done before and it’s going to take time and effort but why can’t we have a good time AND make money AND help people? 

From now on we will only publicize certain picks (I promised Seeking Alpha 2-4 picks a day) but will keep the comments (for 3-5 days, not sure yet) and spreadsheets (always) to ourselves.  There will be lots of private columns that track sectors but, most importantly, we will try to help you identify what kind of investor you are and what strategy will work best for you.

I’ve never done this before so don’t just humor me, ask questions, request topics, give us your opinion so we can build this thing together.  I’m very proud to have gotten this far after just one year…
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Thursday Morning

Last Thursday was not good.

Yesterday was not good either. It wasn’t bad – it just wasn’t good. Something has to perk up tech, especially the semis or it may be time to lighten up again into the holidays. Today may be the critical day as the VIX crashes and we set a direction ahead of the inevitable rebound after options expiration.

That’s the other big factor, options expire tomorrow and you can see a lot of stocks flat-lining into expiration and we can’t trust any movement we see this week so be very careful out there!

[Timothy Johnson]

As of 7am, oil was up a full dollar in European trading. Sen. Tim Johnson (D – SD) is in critical conditionand should he be forced to step down the Republican Governor, Mike Rounds, gets to appoint his successor and swing the Senate back to the Republicans!

OPEC did nothing but pledged to cut another 500Kbd in February, so let’s keep an eye on the March and April contracts to see how real the traders think this is. I will likely take this one last opportunity to double down Jan oil puts – if it ever stops going up!

Our prayers go out to Senator Johnson, who is just 59 but seems to have had a stroke – he is listed in critical condition after emergency surgery.

Asian markets were up across the board with India recovering 305 more points and saving my market of the year prediction (at least this week). The Hang Seng erased yesterday’s drop entirely as Chinese leaders seemed intent on making a public showingof telling Paulson and Bernanke who was really the boss while privately releasing “work plans for various government agencies to tackle tensions between the two countries.”

We have had the genuine feeling that some American friends are not only having limited knowledge of, but harbouring much misunderstanding about the reality in China,” VP Wu told Paulson and other senior Washington policy-makers at the start of their two-day meeting in Beijing. “This is not conducive to the sound development of our bilateral relations.”

Europe was flat this morning, BP has been advised there will be formal charges related to price fixing in a widening investigation.

At home we have to switch to watching our bottoms as oil will put early pressure
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Wednesday Wrap-Up

Wow – how low can the VIX go?

So low, it seems that I’m not even going to discuss the non-movement of the indices other than the SOX (the HORROR) who are assassinating the Nasdaq. Actually, the Nasdaq was amazing against a 1.23% SOX drop but I don’t see them keeping that up for very long – one has to snap soon.

Just be warned that the last time volatility bled this low was Thanksgiving weekend and we got a heck of a drop(300 pts) as the VIX came back up.

Oil didn’t do much either today (up .35) which you would think is surprising against a 4.3M barrel draw that was 3x analysts estimates but as long as we hold $61.69 through Friday, I’m happy.

I’m going to wait to hear what OPEC has to say but I am going to blow the whistle on the myth of Chinese demand this weekend (sneak peek in comments the other day) as this is the most overused excuse since hurricanes to pump up the price of oil!

I do have to say WOW to oil pumpers though. It takes a lot of guts to shove 21M additional barrels into February at $61.99 when March is Just $62.92, having fallen from $66.50 in just 8 sessions!

The dollar closed flat and gold gained a buck so there was not much point for showing up for anything today!

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At this point I feel like I was robbed taking a .15 gain on the first half of my DALRQ Jan ’08 $2.50s, now .80 (up .75!).

HD May $40s finished the day at $2.25 (up .30).

HPQ Jan $40s came in at just a buck.

LVS had a rough day, giving up 3 more dollars. The Jan $95 puts are now $6.20 (up 30%) and I’m taking them off at the first sign of trouble and looking to enter the Feb $80 puts so I can take half off the table.

I hope I was right about GSF giving me a top on the OIH. We initiated the Apr $140 puts for $6.40, hoping to sell the Jan $140 puts for $5.50 or more.

OII went nowhere, despite the huge morning rise in crude – very interesting! The Apr $40 puts finished even at $1.60.

I took another stab at OXPS with the Mar $25s
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Which Way Wednesday?

See Trader Mike’s Nasdaq chart on the previous post to get an idea of what’s going on in the market today.

I’m still bullish but the Hang Seng disagrees with me but India recovered 186 out of 800 points and the Nikkei posted a small gain despite the fact that the BOJ is almost certain to leave rates flat in order to prop up the dollar.

This hurts our MTU Jan ’08 $10s, but they are way up at $3.50 (up 25%) and we only just got them so I’m going to give it a little slack.

I think the general consensus in Hong Kong is that they’re not sure what’s going to happen this week but with two of the world’s most powerful bankers en route, they are pretty sure they are going to get screwed somehow…

Obviously our lower trade deficit lowered their trade surplus somewhat, so that’s kind of a drag as well.

Also of note in Asia is HD signing an agreement to buy Homeway, China’s DIY shop with 6 stores in 12 cities. It’s not about the company they bought, it’s about the fact that China’s letting them in! HD May $40s are $1.95and it’s a good entry but I was waiting for them to come down to $37. With this news a small entry is called for but it is very possible we’ll be taking the bulk of our entry lower. BBY may make a China announcement as well ahead of Paulson’s visit, we have 2 positions in that one…

Europe is in a pretty good mood this morning and they are exercising their economic might to further crack down on industrial pollution with some strict restrictions on chemicals used in manufacturing as well as cracking down on price gouging by energy companies. This may have a very nasty side effect of damaging the global natural gas cartel as the EU has been after Germany for some time to free up that market. Formal charges have been filed against Germany!

Other countries charged are: Austria, Belgium, the Czech Republic, Estonia, France, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Lithuania, Latvia, Poland, Spain, Sweden, Slovakia and the U.K. with violations, ranging from setting electricity prices so low that new entrants can’t compete, to not enforcing orders aimed at separating energy supplies and network operations.” This is like the the US government
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Stock World Weekly

Stock World Weekly

Newsletter writers are available to chat with Members regarding topics presented in SWW, comments are found below each post.

Here's the Happy Thanksgiving Edition of Stock World Weekly!

Click on this link and sign in with your PSW user name and password. 

Picture via Pixabay.

...

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Zero Hedge

Pity the Sub-Genius

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Submitted by Tim Knight from Slope of Hope.

From the Slope of Hope: They say be careful what you wish for. And, as is often the case, "they" are right.

As a kid, I wished the world favored the smart. I was a smart kid, and it seemed like the world - at least my world - was dominated by bullies and airheads. Might made right, just like in the times of old. My high IQ and love of learning were no match for popular dolts, so a portion of my childhood was wasted just trying to disappear into the background.

Unknown to me at the time, much of the adult world operated the same way. It didn't take a ...



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"Eagle Cam": Aerial View of London via Video Camera Attached to an Eagle

Courtesy of Mish.

An eagle got an impressive birds-eye-view of London this week, flying over the city's most iconic landmarks using a Sony HDR-AZ1VR Action Cam attached to its back.



Link if video does not play: Action Cam Footage Shows Eagle Flying Over City of London

The BBC reports Eagle With Camera Flies Over London
An eagle with a camera attached has flown across London and offered a new perspective on some of the capital's best-known landmarks.

The footage was recorded over a week by an Imperial Eagle called Darchan.

The animal has been brought to London from the French Alps by The Freedom Project to mark the 50th anniversary of the International Union for Conservation of ...



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Market Shadows

Official Moves in the Market Shadows' Virtual Portfolio

By Ilene 

I officially bought 250 shares of EZCH at $18.76 and sold 300 shares of IGT at $17.09 in Market Shadows' Virtual Portfolio yesterday (Fri. 11-21).

Click here for Thursday's post where I was thinking about buying EZCH. After further reading, I decided to add it to the virtual portfolio and to sell IGT and several other stocks, which we'll be saying goodbye to next week.

Notes

1. th...



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Chart School

The Big Four Economic Indicators: Real Retail Sales

Courtesy of Doug Short.

Note from dshort: With yesterday's release of the Consumer Price Index for October, I've updated Real Retail Sales for October.

Official recession calls are the responsibility of the NBER Business Cycle Dating Committee, which is understandably vague about the specific indicators on which they base their decisions. This committee statement is about as close as they get to identifying their method.

There is, however, a general belief that there are four big indicators that the committee weighs heavily in their cycle identification process. They are:

  • Industrial Production
  • Real Personal Income (excluding Transfer Payments)
  • Nonfarm Employment
  • Real Retail Sales
  • ...

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    All About Trends

    Mid-Day Update

    Reminder: David is available to chat with Members, comments are found below each post.

    Click here for the full report.




    To learn more, sign up for David's free newsletter and receive the free report from All About Trends - "How To Outperform 90% Of Wall Street With Just $500 A Week." Tell David PSW sent you. - Ilene...

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    OpTrader

    Swing trading portfolio - week of November 17th, 2014

    Reminder: OpTrader is available to chat with Members, comments are found below each post.

     

    This post is for all our live virtual trade ideas and daily comments. Please click on "comments" below to follow our live discussion. All of our current  trades are listed in the spreadsheet below, with entry price (1/2 in and All in), and exit prices (1/3 out, 2/3 out, and All out).

    We also indicate our stop, which is most of the time the "5 day moving average". All trades, unless indicated, are front-month ATM options. 

    Please feel free to participate in the discussion and ask any questions you might have about this virtual portfolio, by clicking on the "comments" link right below.

    To learn more about the swing trading virtual portfolio (strategy, performance, FAQ, etc.), please click here ...



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    Sabrient

    Sector Detector: Investors make up new rules for their new market paradigm

    Reminder: Sabrient is available to chat with Members, comments are found below each post.

    Courtesy of Sabrient Systems and Gradient Analytics

    By Scott Martindale

    Investors in U.S. equities seem to have embraced a new market paradigm in which upside spikes come more swiftly than the downside selloffs. Remember when it used to be the other way around? When fear was stronger than greed? The market is consolidating its gains off the early-October V-bottom reversal, and no one seems to be in any hurry to unload shares this time around, with the holidays rapidly approaching and all. After all, there are bright blue skies directly overhead giving hope and respite from the early freeze blanketing the country.

    In this weekly update, I give my view of the current market environment, offer...



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    Digital Currencies

    Ukraine Central Bank Bans Bitcoin "To Protect Citizens" From Financing Terrorism

    If you would have supposed that Ukraine had enough problems to make banning bitcoins a backburner issue, you'd have been wrong. The rationale, "to protect consumers' rights" makes little to no sense... The other one, "to keep money in the country" makes more sense. 

    Ukraine Central Bank Bans Bitcoin "To Protect Citizens" From Financing Terrorism

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    Yamana Gold call options sink

    Yamana Gold call options sink

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    A four-year low for the spot price of gold has had a devastating impact on Yamana Gold (Ticker: AUY), with shares in the name down at the lowest price in six years. Some option traders were especially keen to sell premium and appear to see few signs of a lasting rebound within the next five months. The price of gold suffered again Wednesday as the dollar strengthened and stock prices advanced. The post price of gold fell to $1145 adding further pain to share prices of gold miners. Shares in Yamana Gold tumbled to $3.62 and the lowest price since 2008 as call option sellers used the April expiration contract to write premium at the $5.00 strike. That strike is now 38% above the price of the stock. Premium writers took in around 16-cents per contract o...



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    Pharmboy

    Biotechs & Bubbles

    Reminder: Pharmboy is available to chat with Members, comments are found below each post.

    Well PSW Subscribers....I am still here, barely.  From my last post a few months ago to now, nothing has changed much, but there are a few bargins out there that as investors, should be put on the watch list (again) and if so desired....buy a small amount.

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    Help One Of Our Own PSW Members

    "Hello PSW Members –

    This is a non-trading topic, but I wanted to post it during trading hours so as many eyes can see it as possible.  Feel free to contact me directly at jennifersurovy@yahoo.com with any questions.

    Last fall there was some discussion on the PSW board regarding setting up a YouCaring donation page for a PSW member, Shadowfax. Since then, we have been looking into ways to help get him additional medical services and to pay down his medical debts.  After following those leads, we are ready to move ahead with the YouCaring site. (Link is posted below.)  Any help you can give will be greatly appreciated; not only to help aid in his medical bill debt, but to also show what a great community this group is.

    http://www.youcaring.com/medical-fundraiser/help-get-shadowfax-out-from-the-darkness-of-medical-bills-/126743

    Thank you for you time!




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    About Phil:

    Philip R. Davis is a founder Phil's Stock World, a stock and options trading site that teaches the art of options trading to newcomers and devises advanced strategies for expert traders...

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    About Ilene:

    Ilene is editor and affiliate program coordinator for PSW. She manages the site market shadows, archives, more. Contact Ilene to learn about our affiliate and content sharing programs.

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