Archive for 2009

The ECB continues to mismanage the crisis and underestimate CEE

Courtesy of Cornelius at Zero Hedge

The ECB continues to mismanage the crisis and underestimate CEE

We’ve never been huge fans of Euro central bank policy and the recent news coming out is not doing much to change that view. The Europeans have consistently been the slowest in slashing rates and even now, are sitting at 1.25% in the face of further precipitious falls across demand, supply, exports, etc.  Many currency strategists are expecting a bullish move in the Euro in the short term due to the spread between the spot and swap prices (see below) but we have to wonder if that alone is sufficient in the face of the other macro factors at play. In other words, relying on the continued stupidity of central bankers is not the most tenable investment thesis.
There are numerous reasons to continue to be bearish on the Euro, not the least of which is that we aren’t convinced that the full impact of the "CEE effect" has been priced in. The focus of this piece is not to do a full investigation (though there is plenty of material to do a full investigative piece) but we want to present some data for your consideration. 
First, the CEE countries are still extremely leveraged; for illustrative purposes, we compare them below to Asian countries in ’96.
Second, this debt is owed to a lot of western banks (i.e. Euroland banks).

Finally, the trade flows are extremely weak in the region. This of course is far from surpring when you consider the larger macro forces that we have discussed before.
We have to believe it’s not a question of if, but when we are going to see a rate cut. A half-assed bailout package and a slow reaction to market signals doesn’t quite inspire confidence but eventually the ship has to come around. Right?

Weekly Wrap-Up

What a strange week.

Overall, it was a big, ugly "W":  We began the week at about 8,100, fell to 7,800 Tuesday morning, rose to 8,050 on Wednesday (hump day), fell to 7,800 again on Thursday and then back to 8,100 on Friday.  In summary – NOTHING HAPPENED!  We have that gap to fill on Monday around 8,000 (last Monday's gap down open) and, unlike this past week, next week is going to be chock-full of scary data points including Consumer Confidence and Case/Shiller Home Prices on Tuesday, GDP and the Fed on Wednesday, Jobless Claims and Personal Income and Spending along with the Chicago PMI on Thursday and Friday is still busy with Michigan Sentiment, Factory Orders, ISM and Auto Sales for April

It's going to be fun, fun, fun next week as another 25% of the S&P 500 are set to report and early on, we'll be keeping our eyes on the following:


So plenty to keep us busy but earnings last week were way better than expected overall and guidance was not too depressing so we'll have to see what kind of follow-through we can now get on that and if there is any gas left in the market to finally punch through that 8,200 mark or if we are still doomed to correct back to 7,632 in the very least. 

As I mentioned in last week's wrap-up, we called it right by entering the weekend 55% bearish despite the fabulous stick save of Friday the 16th.  In fact, I should have gone with my gut at 3:43 that day when I said to members: "DIA – 1/2 cover into the close it is then.  I wanted to go
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Back to the Future Recession

Courtesy of John Mauldin at Investors Insight

Back to the Future Recession

Financial Innovation: The Round Trip
2010-11: Back to the Future Recession
The Fed at the Crossroads
How Did We Get It So Wrong?
The Trend Is Not Your Friend When It Ends
Orlando, Naples, Cleveland, and Grandkids

This week we look at the second half of my speech from a few weeks ago at my annual Strategic Investment Conference in La Jolla. If you have not read the first part, you can review it here. The first few paragraphs are a repeat from last week, to give us some context. Please note that this is somewhat edited from the original, and I have added a few ideas. You can also go there to sign up to get this letter sent to you free each week.


Okay, when you become a central banker, you are taken into a back room and they do a DNA change on you. You are henceforth and forever genetically incapable of allowing deflation on your watch. It becomes the first and foremost thought on your mind: deflation, we can’t have it.

MV=PQ. This is an important equation, right up there with E=MC². M (money or the supply of money) times V (velocity — which is how fast the money goes through the system — if you have seven kids it goes faster than if you have one) is equal to P (the price of money in terms of inflation or deflation) times Q (roughly standing for the Quantity of production, or GDP).

So what happens is, if we increase the supply of money and velocity stays the same, and if GDP does not grow, that means we’ll have inflation, because this equation always balances. But if you reduce velocity (which is happening today) and if you don’t increase the supply of money, you are going to see deflation. We are watching, for reasons we’ll get into in a minute, the velocity of money slow. People are getting nervous, they are not borrowing as much, either because they can’t or the animal spirits that Keynes talked about are not quite there.

To fight this deflation (which we saw in this week’s Producer and Consumer Price Indexes) the Fed is going to print…
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Drug and vaccine makers on standby over swine flu

Here’s a couple more articles on the Swine flu situation. – Ilene

Swine Flu Confirmed in 20 People in the U.S., CDC Chief Says

By Hans Nichols, Bloomberg

April 26 (Bloomberg) — Twenty people in the U.S. have confirmed cases of swine flu linked to the virus that has spread in Mexico, and the acting head of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said officials expect more severe infections to begin showing up.

Richard Besser, the CDC’s acting director, said the virus has been identified in New York, Texas, California, Kansas and Ohio. So far, the cases have been relatively mild and only one person has reported being hospitalized.

“It looks to be the same virus that is causing the situation in Mexico,” Besser said at a briefing at the White House. Scientists are trying to determine why the virus, normally transmitted among pigs, has been more severe in Mexico, where as many as 81 deaths have been linked to the infection…

White House press secretary Robert Gibbs said it was “far too early to determine” whether there will be an economic impact from the outbreak….

He said there is “no evidence whatsoever” of a connection to bioterrorism. Besser said all investigations so far point to a naturally occurring virus.

More here.

Drug and vaccine makers on standby over swine flu

By Ben Hirschler and Sam Cage

LONDON/ZURICH (Reuters) – Drugmakers said on Sunday they could supply millions of doses of medicine and were ready to work on a vaccine against a new type of swine flu that has killed up to 81 people in Mexico and infected around a dozen in the United States.

Roche Holding AG’s Tamiflu, known generically as oseltamivir, and GlaxoSmithKline Plc’s Relenza, or zanamivir, are both recommended drugs for seasonal flu and have been shown to work against viral samples of the new disease.

Tamiflu is expected to be in greatest demand should swine flu develop into a pandemic, as experts fear it may, since it is given as a tablet. Relenza must be inhaled…

The longer-term battle against any pandemic, however, depends

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Lecture By Eric Rosenfeld Of LTCM

Courtesy of Tyler at ZH

Lecture By Eric Rosenfeld Of LTCM

A great way to spend an hour and a half and understand just how black swans can annihilate seemingly riskless portfolios, especially those with a preponderance of Ph.D.’s as portfolio managers who claim to understand "risk". If nothing else fast forward to the 1 hour mark to listen to Eric’s discussion of endogenous risk and LTCM’s trading of liquidity in a crisis, and how it can all go horribly wrong when you have too many people on the same side of the trade. Prime Brokers, especially those of preferential banks, likely can see all the "liquidity" exposure from their counterparties and nudge their own institutions to react appropriately. (hat tip *.*).

The Insiders Are Selling Into This Rally…. Heavily

This is not good news for Insider Trading Buying strategies which tend to work best when the market has bottomed and insiders start buying significant positions in their companies.  The key is to be patient… – Ilene

The Insiders Are Selling Into This Rally…. Heavily

Courtesy of Jesse’s Café Américain

Do you need to buy a vowel?


Keep the possibility of a significant monetary inflation in mind, with no advance in real terms but a handsome nominal rally.

Yes, they are that desperate and reckless and short-sighted. That’s what they did in 2003 in creating the housing bubble to save Wall Street and the financial markets.

But the greater probability remains that this is an engineered short squeeze that will fail about this level and fall back to the bottom of the trend channel.

Insider Selling Jumps to Highest Level Since ‘07 as Stocks Gain
By Michael Tsang and Eric Martin

April 24 (Bloomberg) — Executives and insiders at U.S. companies are taking advantage of the steepest stock market gains since 1938 to unload shares at the fastest pace since the start of the bear market.

… While the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index climbed 26 percent from a 12-year low on March 9, CEOs, directors and senior officers at U.S. companies sold $353 million of equities this month, or 8.3 times more than they bought, data compiled by Washington Service, a Bethesda, Maryland-based research firm, show. That’s a warning sign because insiders usually have more information about their companies’ prospects than anyone else, according to William Stone at PNC Financial Services Group Inc.

“They should know more than outsiders would, so you could take it as a signal that there is something wrong if they’re selling,” said Stone, chief investment strategist at PNC’s wealth management unit, which oversees $110 billion in Philadelphia. “Whether it’s a sustainable rebound is still in question. I’d prefer they were buying.”

Insiders Sell

Insiders from New York Stock Exchange-listed companies sold $8.32 worth of stock for every dollar bought in the first three weeks of April, according to Washington Service, which analyzes stock transactions of corporate insiders for more than 500 mostly institutional clients.

That’s the fastest rate of selling since October 2007, when U.S. stocks peaked and the 17-month bear market that wiped out more than half

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The One Trillion Commercial Real Estate Time Bomb

Courtesy of Tyler at Zero Hedge 

The One Trillion Commercial Real Estate Time Bomb

Imminently, Zero Hedge will present some of its recently percolating theories about some oddly convenient coincidences we have witnessed in the commercial real estate market. However, for now I focus on some additional facts about why the unprecedented economic deterioration and the resulting epic drop in commercial real estate values could result in over $1 trillion in upcoming headaches for financial institutions, investors and the administration.

When a month ago I presented some of the projected dynamics of CMBS, a weakness of that analysis was that it did not address the issue in the context of the CRE market’s entirety. The fact is that Commercial Mortgage Backed Securities (or securitized conduit financings that gained a lot of favor during the credit bubble peak years for beginners) is at most 25% of the total commercial real estate market, with the bulk of exposure concentrated at banks (50%) and insurance companies’ (10%) balance sheets.

But regardless what the source of the original credit exposure, whether securitized or whole loans, the core of the problem is the decline in prices of the underlying properties, in many cases as much as 35-50%. When one considers that with time, the underlying financings became more and more debt prevalent (a good example of the CRE bubble market isthe late-2006 purchase of 666 Fifth Avenue by Jared Kushner from Tishman Speyer for $1.8 billion with no equity down), the largest threat to both the CRE market and the bank’s balance sheet is the refinancing contingency, as absent yet another major rent/real estate bubble, the value holes at the time of maturity would have to be plugged with equity from existing borrowers (which, despite what the "stress test" may allege, simply does not exist absent a wholesale banking system nationalization).

The refinancing problem thus boils down to two concurrent themes: The first is the altogether entire current shut down in debt capital markets for assets, which affects all refinancings equally (for the most immediate impact of this issue see General Growth Properties which was not able to obtain any refinancing clemency on the bulk of its properties). The government

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A Compiliation of 21 Posts on Trend Days

Everything you always wanted to know about trend days, right here. Thanks to Corey for gathering up all the links to articles he’s written on the subject. – Ilene

A Compiliation of 21 Posts on Trend Days

Courtesy of Corey at Afraid to Trade

With Trend Days becoming more prevalent in the market, I thought it would be beneficial for you if I compiled some of my best intraday analysis summary posts and educational posts on “Trend Days” into a single, featured post.  Use this as a reference to brush-up on this powerful and profitable trading strategy.

Educational Lessons

Using the TICK to Time Entries on a Trend Day

Why You Should Turn Off Indicators on Trend Days

Intraday Leverage Ideas (on a Trend Day)

A Little “Trick” In February 8, 2009’s Trend Day (up)

Three Types of Morning Openings

“Bear Flags Galore” in SLV (March 18, 2009)

“The Most Perfect Trend Day Ever” on March 12, 2009

Interesting Lessons from February 20, 2009  “Almost” Trend Day Down

Quick Tips on Trading Trend Days

Trend Day Examples with Lessons

The Amazing, Surprising Trend Day (up) of March 23, 2009

A Powerful Trend Day that Failed – March 16, 2009

“Stepping Inside” March 10, 2009’s Trend Day

A Look Inside the Trend Day in GLD for March 5, 2009

Trading the Strong Trend Day Down on January 29, 2009

January 20th, 2009 (Inauguration Day!) Terrible Trend Day Down

Trading Tactics for July 29, 2008’s Trend Day

Yet Another Trend Day Down (with bear flags) July 28, 2008

July 24, 2008 Trend Day Down in the Dow and Ford

Trading the Strong Trend Day (down) of June 26, 2008

Trading Tactics for June 11, 2008’s Trend Day (down)

“Bears Take their Intraday Swipe” on May 20, 2008

Finally, check out Dr. Steenbarger’s educational post “Six Ways to Identify a Trend Day in the Stock Market.

The bulk of some traders’ monthly profits come from successful execution on Trend Days – while other traders get plowed-over on these days by fighting a prevailing trend.  Make sure you know as much about Trend Days as possible, do your research, and take advantage of recognizing these days when they develop – they can be very rewarding… or destructive.

Corey Rosenbloom, CMT
Afraid to


Commentary: Euphoria or the Obama Depression?

Here’s an article by my friend Timothy Naegele who believes that the economy will not recover in any meaningful sense, and in fact will become a lot worse, between now and 2017-2019. – Ilene

Commentary: Euphoria or the Obama Depression?

Courtesy of Timothy D. Naegele | Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune News Service

Former Federal Reserve Board Chairman Alan Greenspan’s "easy money" policies and laissez–faire attitude toward the regulation of banks and other financial institutions – a belief in self-regulation – gave rise to the housing "bubble" and our ensuing economic problems. When the bubble finally burst, a tsunami was released that has been rolling worldwide and hurting millions of people, with no end in sight to the enormous suffering.

Barack Obama is euphorically optimistic, but neither he nor the leaders of other countries can hold back an economic tsunami, just as mankind is helpless to stop the wrath of natural tsunamis in the oceans.

Obama supporter George Soros says: "There’s no sign that we are anywhere near a bottom." Obama’s business guru, Warren Buffett, believes the U.S. economy has "fallen off a cliff." Vernon L. Smith, Nobel Laureate in Economics, and Steven Gjerstad said recently: "The events of the past 10 years have an eerie similarity to the period leading up to the Great Depression." According to the Rasmussen Reports, most Americans – 53 percent, in fact – believe the United States is at least somewhat likely to enter a 1930s–like Depression within the next few years. If so, the repercussions are unfathomable.

Rupert Murdoch said: "We are in the midst of a phase of history in which nations will be redefined and their futures fundamentally altered. Many people will be under extreme pressure and many companies mortally wounded." Legendary former Federal Reserve Chairman Paul Volcker, who now oversees Obama’s economic recovery efforts, said recently: "I don’t remember any time, maybe even in the Great Depression, when things went down quite so fast, quite so uniformly around the world."

While Volcker was referring to the global economy, he could have been talking just as appropriately about Americans’ faith in the Obama administration during the months ahead.

The "New Deal II," or the most sweeping expansion of government in decades that is being put into place by Obama and the Democrats, will only prolong the "Great Depression II," not thwart its progress. Franklin D. Roosevelt’s…
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Zero Hedge

Bond Bloodbath Sinks Stocks As Dollar Spikes To 9-Month Highs

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Another day, another pump-n-dump...

For a few brief shining moments this morning, everything was awesome, but then - once again - the selling started...

Bonds & Stocks were slammed...

As Risk parity funds dumped...


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Phil's Favorites

Knocking Down a Straw Man


Knocking Down a Straw Man

Courtesy of 

Straw Man Argument: By exaggerating, misrepresenting, or just completely fabricating someone’s argument, it’s much easier to present your own position as being reasonable, but this kind of dishonesty serves to undermine honest rational debate.

Today I’m going to pull a straw man down from its rigging, have sex with it, set it on fire and then kick it off a cliff. I’m tired of hearing it and seeing the snide remarks posted across blogs and social media by people who ought to know better.

Here is that argument, paraphrased for brevity:

“Robo-advisors and financi...

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Digital Currencies

Needham Raises Bitcoin Price Target To $848: Here's Why

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

With bitcoin breaking out of its recent trading range as Chinese buyers once again flock to the currency as the Yuan slides (as we predicted over a year ago they would), even Wall Street analysts are starting to pay attention, and in a recent report by Needham's Spencer Bogart, the analyst has raised his price...

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Russia - A Real Breakthrough In The Corporate Governance Of State-Owned Enterprises

By VW Staff. Originally published at ValueWalk.

For years, Russia had the appearance of a low-yielding equity market – at least in the eyes of those who looked at it through the prism of the MSCI and similar indices. In reality and probably more so than in other market, the headline dividend yield masked a very different relative performance between the private and state sectors – whilst at the same time, state-owned enterprises accounted for a very large portion of the index and are slightly above half at present. Even this year, despite trading at lower earnings multiples than private companies and representing mature industries, state-controlled businesses had a dividend yield of around half the yield of their private peers. This gap was even larger in previous years.


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Kimble Charting Solutions

London- 4th attempt to breakout in 16-years, results different this time?

Courtesy of Chris Kimble.

Four months ago the world seemed scared that the Brexit vote would be negative for Europe and potentially around the world. Four months later, almost the polar opposite deserves discussion.

Below updates the FTSE -100 Index on a monthly basis over the past few decades.


FTSE Index is now testing a resistance zone for the 4th time in the past 16-years at (1), as well as testing the underside of line (3) at the same time.

Monthly MACD has created a series of ...

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Market News

News You Can Use From Phil's Stock World


Financial Markets and Economy

Investors want out of the stock market (Business Insider)

Retail investors seem to have cooled on the stock market.

According to a note from Bespoke Investment Group, equity mutual funds have experienced their largest weekly outflows since August 2011.

National Living Wage Helps Boost Pay for Lowest U.K. Earners (Bloomberg)

The U.K.’s increased national minimum wage is showing signs of success.

The lowest-paid British workers had the strongest salary growt...

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Members' Corner


Courtesy of Nattering Naybob.


Discussion of the potential impacts on equity, bond, commodity, capital and asset markets regarding the following:

  • Rising Libor and Bond Yields
  • Negative Swap Spreads, Eurodollar Curve, Repo Effects
  • Compliance, Expectations, Liquidity, Fed Action

Last Time Out

"25-54 yr old prime earners peaking at 101083 in Nov 2007; today at 97628, for a net decline of 3.5M prime earning jobs during this "recovery". No real jobs, just McJobs for McPay."

"Above note, 55yrs+ in Nov 2007 at 26376, now at 34353, for a net increase of 8 million employed. Not for sheer enjoyment and mostly out of economic necessity. The above attests to no real jobs, just McJobs for McPay and work till you die?" - 08...

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Chart School

Tech Hold Breakout,.but S&P Wedge Bound

Courtesy of Declan.

It was a mixed day for indices. Large Caps remain bound by wedge support/resistance, but Tech broke upside yesterday from similar wedges and held those breakout today.

There was little change for the S&P over the last couple of days. The one technical change was the MACD trigger 'buy' as other technicals stayed on the bearish side.

Meanwhile, the Nasdaq cleared wedge resistance yesterday, and was able to hang on to the breakout despite today's loss. It too enjoyed a MACD trigger 'buy', but had an On-Bal...

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Swing trading portfolio - week of October 24th,2016

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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Mapping The Market

The Most Overlooked Trait of Investing Success

Via Jean-Luc

Good article on investing success:

The Most Overlooked Trait of Investing Success

By Morgan Housel

There is a reason no Berkshire Hathaway investor chides Buffett when the company has a bad quarter. It’s because Buffett has so thoroughly convinced his investors that it’s pointless to try to navigate around 90-day intervals. He’s done that by writing incredibly lucid letters to investors for the last 50 years, communicating in easy-to-understand language at annual meetings, and speaking on TV in ways that someone with no investing experience can grasp.

Yes, Buffett runs an amazing investment company. But he also runs an amazing investor company. One of the most underappreciated part of his s...

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Epizyme - A Waiting Game

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

Epizyme was founded in 2007, and trying to create drugs to treat patient's cancer by focusing on genetically-linked differences between normal and cancer cells. Cancer areas of focus include leukemia, Non-Hodgkin's lymphoma and breast cancer.  One of the Epizme cofounders, H. Robert Horvitz, won the Nobel Prize in Medicine in 2002 for "discoveries concerning genetic regulation of organ development and programmed cell death."

Before discussing the drug targets of Epizyme, understanding epigenetics is crucial to comprehend the company's goals.  

Genetic components are the DNA sequences that are 'inherited.'  Some of these genes are stronger than others in their expression (e.g., eye color).  Yet, some genes turn on or off due to external factors (environmental), and it is und...

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All About Trends

Mid-Day Update

Reminder: Harlan 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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PSW is more than just stock talk!


We know you love coming here for our Stocks & Options education, strategy and trade ideas, and for Phil's daily commentary which you can't live without, but there's more! features the most important and most interesting news items from around the web, all day, every day!

News: If you missed it, you can probably find it in our Market News section. We sift through piles of news so you don't have to.   

If you are looking for non-mainstream, provocatively-narrated news and opinion pieces which promise to make you think -- we feature Zero Hedge, ...

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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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