Archive for 2011

EURO SCRaMBLe 2011

Courtesy of williambanzai7

EURO SCRAMBLE





Poorly-Timed SPR Oil Release Could Cost U.S. Taxpayers $1.5 Billion

Courtesy of Dian of EconMatters

World crude oil market has been rocked by the surprise announcement of the International Energy Agency (IEA) to release 60 million barrels of oil from member countries’ strategic petroleum reserves (SPR). The US led the effort by chipping in 50% of the planned release, while Japan, Germany, France, Spain and Italy are providing most of the rest.

Questionable Timing

This kind of coordinated sale from the IEA has only occurred twice before on a supply emergency basis – 1991 Persian Gulf War, and Hurricane Katrina in 2005. This time around, the “supply emergency” cited was the disruption stemming from the conflict in Libya, which started about four months ago.

So just based on face value, the timing seems questionable, and we have not even got into the philosophical debate as to whether SPR should be used as a market price equilibrium tool, which was briefly discussed in my previous article, but will not be the focus of this discussion.  

What Supply Emergency?

Unlike the two previous releases by the IEA, currently there’s no similar crude supply shortage situation. Libya and Yemen are the two biggest concerns that the unrest could destabilize larger oil-producing countries in the region. However, these two nations produce less than 4% of the world’s oil needs, and Saudi Arabia and others have boosted output to make up for much of the shortfall.

In the U.S., crude inventory remains high at 363.8 million barrels as of June 17, above the average range, and there’s no dire shortage in products either (See Chart Below).
 

Outside of the U.S., stocks are building as well. From Oil Daily dated June 21:

“OECD commercial inventories for crude and products rose again in May, which came on the heels of an almost 1 million b/d jump in April….At 2.656 billion barrels, OECD inventories provide a solid cushion…”

If there such a “tight” European crude market caused by Libyan disruption as many, including the IEA, cited, then there should not be such a build in inventories in OECD.

Other Possible Incentives

Others believe the move by the IEA and the U.S. is to

  • Curb high consumer gasoline prices
  • Send a message to market speculators
  • Counter the failed production increase at OPEC meeting in Vienna on June 8
  • Act as stimulus amid


continue reading





What If Greece Says No?

Courtesy of Tyler Durden

With Greece set to dominate the news flow once again in the upcoming week, the question on everyone’s mind is what would happen “if Greece says no”, preferrably with some more nuance than just “the end of the world.” So for everyone inquiring, here is SocGen’s Michala Marcusen with a full timeline of the “what if” scenario.

From Societe Generale

The Greek Parliament is due to vote on the Medium-Term Fiscal Strategy (MTFS) on June 28 and the associated implementation law on June 30. If all goes well, the Eurogroup will then meet on July 3 to finalise a new 3-year program for Greece. If the Greek Parliament votes No (a scenario to which we attach a 30% probability), the much need next €12bn tranche of the EU/IMF would be blocked and Greece would be left grappling for funding in a political vacuum pending a likely general election. In such a scenario, the EU would have to take aggressive action to stem contagion; and this could include reactivating  the ECB’s SMP. Even in a best case solution, the euro area debt crisis seems likely to run from one issue to the next with the over-arching solution of a new credible fiscal policy infrastructure coming into place only very slowly.

If all goes well …

A yes vote in the Greek Parliament to the MTFS will no doubt bring a sign of relief, and the immediate focus will shift to the Eurogroup meeting on July 3.

What shape will the new program take? We expect the Eurogroup to define a 3-year package effectively removing the need for Greece to access bond markets before 2015. While there is no final number as of yet, a package of €85-120bn seems likely split between new EU/IMF loans worth €40-70bn, Greek privatisation receipts of around €25bn and private creditor participation of €20-30bn.

How will private creditors participate? At last week’s Eurogroup meeting a subtle change to ESM seniority, making loans to Greece, Portugal and Ireland exempt from the rule (pending approval by national parliaments) brought a small first concession to private creditors. However, press reports suggest that private creditors (and this mainly concerns banks, who hold the bulk of the shorter dated Greek paper) want more enhancements before agreeing to some form of maturity extension. An additional concern is not to trigger a credit event in the process, which…
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A Look At Events In The Week Ahead: All About Greece Part 2

Courtesy of Tyler Durden

From Goldman Sachs

Week in Review

Markets remained glued to events in Greece last week starting with the Eurogroup finance minster meeting at the beginning of the week, the vote of confidence in the Greek Government, which they won, to the Eurogroup summit at the end of the week, which approved the Greek Medium-Term Fiscal Strategy. The latter will be subject to a parliamentary vote in the coming week. Despite all the too-ing and fro-ing over Greece, the Euro really hasn’t done that much. It remained essentially range-bound, as did most other currencies, including the Dollar. Cyclical assets broadly matched this pattern. The US Wavefront Growth basket has climbed off its lows, but bond yields generally declined last week.

Week Ahead

Greece will remain the main focus of attention. As it stands at the moment, the Greek Parliament will begin to debate the medium-term fiscal plan and the implementation laws on Monday. Voting on the legislation will occur on Wednesday for the Medium-Term Fiscal Strategy and Thursday for the implementation law. After the government won a vote of confidence, the assumption is that the required legislation will pass through parliament. However, reports that several PASOK members will potentially vote against the measures will likely add to the uncertainty ahead of the outcome of the parliamentary vote.

On the assumption that Greece passes the required legislation, on July 3, the Eurogroup will authorise the disbursement of the fifth tranche of the current package, and on July 11, will unveil the new funding package for Greece. Again on the assumption that Greece passes the required legislation, the macro data will become front and center on Friday, given it is the first day of the month we will get the release of PMIs globally. We already have a flavour of business sentiment given the downside surprises delivered by the Empire survey, Philly Fed, and the HSBC China Flash PMI, as well as the Euroland Flash PMIs. As usual, we will release the final reading of the GLI for June after the US ISM, which is expected to soften further.

Monday 27 June

US Core PCE (May): We expect a rise of 0.24% mom against consensus expectations of a 0.2% rise, which is equivalent to the last reading.

Tuesday 28 June

US Consumer Confidence (Jun): We expect a slight decline to 59.0 fro 60.8;…
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The SPX 500 – Sleibhins Opinion

Courtesy of Benzinga

In the attached chart [ SPX 500 Monthly ] we can see that the Price action, since March 2009, has been confined to an ascending channel. At this time the upper boundary is at 1515± and the lower boundary is at 1250 ±. It is believed that the Index is headed for 1250 ± . The chart shows one internal rising trend line that is defined by a series of increasing high points . The Index reversed off this trend line as is presently under going a correction that will probably involve a test of the lower boundary before there will be a reversal even though the indicator [ modified Idiot ] is still indicating a BUY. On such a reversal the internal trend line will be the initial target. This prediction is confirmed in various analytical methods. The limiting to one chart is a bit of a nuisance but I will give an URL where those interested can obtain additional information on indicators and some of the methods used in this report. The Indicator the Idiot, on most time periods, is still indicating a SELL which indicates that there is still more downside before the correction is completed. On the shorter [ < 1 day ] time periods the Canary 6 is indicating that a reversal is on the menu. The daily Bi BB’s chart shows that the Price reversed off the MBB [ 1289.59 ] and has now closed [ 1268.45 ] on the LBB (20,1) [ 1268.45 ]. A break below this level will set the LBB (20,2) [ 1247.31 ] as a target. The calculated PVP Monthly support levels are S1 [ 1314.47 ] , S2 [ 1283.75 ], intermediate point [ 1254.36 ] and S3 [ 1244.97 ] . With the Index having dropped through levels S1 and S2 the immediate downside target is 1254.36. In the coming week of June 27th, the calculated weekly support levels are 1254.36- 1240.90 and 1205.16 . The Daily values for June 27th are 1262.48 – 1256.52 – 1239.83 and 1223.14. The Weekly Planet Price levels are 1320.76 – 1289.31 – 1276.59 – 1260 and 1243.90. Again the support values fall in the same “ball park”. Assuming that this down…
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Roundup: Birth Defects Caused By World’s Top-Selling Weedkiller, Scientists Say

By Lucia Graves, Huffington Post

WASHINGTON — The chemical at the heart of the planet’s most widely used herbicide — Roundup weedkiller, used in farms and gardens across the U.S. — is coming under more intense scrutiny following the release of a new report calling for a heightened regulatory response around its use.

Critics have argued for decades that glyphosate, the active ingredient in Roundup and other herbicides used around the globe, poses a serious threat to public health. Industry regulators, however, appear to have consistently overlooked their concerns.

A comprehensive review of existing data released this month by Earth Open Source, an organization that uses open-source collaboration to advance sustainable food production, suggests that industry regulators in Europe have known for years that glyphosate, originally introduced by American agricultural biotechnology giant Monsanto in 1976, causes birth defects in the embryos of laboratory animals.

Founded in 2009, Earth Open Source is a non-profit organisation incorporated in the U.K. but international in scope. Its three directors, specializing in business, technology and genetic engineering, work pro-bono along with a handful of young volunteers. Partnering with half a dozen international scientists and researchers, the group drew its conclusions in part from studies conducted in a number of locations, including Argentina, Brazil, France and the United States.

Earth Open Source’s study is only the latest report to question the safety of glyphosate, which is the top-ranked herbicide used in the United States. Exact figures are hard to come by because the U.S. Department of Agriculture stopped updating its pesticide use database in 2008. The EPA estimates that the agricultural market used 180 to 185 million pounds of glyphosate between 2006 and 2007, while the non-agricultural market used 8 to 11 million pounds between 2005 and 2007, according to its Pesticide Industry Sales & Usage Report for 2006-2007 published in February, 2011.

More here: Roundup: Birth Defects Caused By World’s Top-Selling Weedkiller, Scientists Say.





Poorly-Timed SPR Oil Release Could Cost U.S. Taxpayers $1.5 Billion

Courtesy of EconMatters

By EconMatters

World crude oil market has been rocked by the surprise announcement of the International Energy Agency (IEA) to release 60 million barrels of oil from member countries’ strategic petroleum reserves (SPR). The US led the effort by chipping in 50% of the planned release, while Japan, Germany, France, Spain and Italy are providing most of the rest.

Questionable Timing

This kind of coordinated sale from the IEA has only occurred twice before on a supply emergency basis – 1991 Persian Gulf War, and Hurricane Katrina in 2005. This time around, the “supply emergency” cited was the disruption stemming from the conflict in Libya, which started about four months ago.

So just based on face value, the timing seems questionable, and we have not even got into the philosophical debate as to whether SPR should be used as a market price equilibrium tool, which was briefly discussed in my previous article, but will not be the focus of this discussion.  

What Supply Emergency?

Unlike the two previous releases by the IEA, currently there’s no similar crude supply shortage situation. Libya and Yemen are the two biggest concerns that the unrest could destabilize larger oil-producing countries in the region. However, these two nations produce less than 4% of the world’s oil needs, and Saudi Arabia and others have boosted output to make up for much of the shortfall.

In the U.S., crude inventory remains high at 363.8 million barrels as of June 17, above the average range, and there’s no dire shortage in products either (See Chart Below).

Outside of the U.S., stocks are building as well. From Oil Daily dated June 21:

“OECD commercial inventories for crude and products rose again in May, which came on the heels of an almost 1 million b/d jump in April….At 2.656 billion barrels, OECD inventories provide a solid cushion…”

If there such a “tight” European crude market caused by Libyan disruption as many, including the IEA, cited, then there should not be such a build in inventories in OECD.

Other Possible Incentives

Others believe the move by the IEA and the U.S. is to

  • Curb high consumer gasoline prices
  • Send a message to market speculators
  • Counter the failed production increase at OPEC meeting in Vienna on


continue reading





Lawsuit Contesting Greek Bailout To Be Heard By German Constitutional Court Imminently

Courtesy of Tyler Durden

While it is not exactly clear what has caused the substantial sell off in the EURUSD over the past several hours, even with the explicit support of China of all insolvent European states, the news that the German constitutional court in Karlsruhe is about to commence hearing a lawsuit contesting the legality of the Greek bailout is certainly not helping the euro. As Athens News reports, “the suit was filed last July by a group of five Eurosceptics led by economist Joachim Starbatty. According to the plaintiffs, the financial help package for Greece runs contrary to article 125 of the EU Treaty – the so-called no-bailout clause – which does not allow the EU or a member state to undertake the responsibility of covering the debts of another member state.” Explaining his lawsuit to Athens News, Starbatty said that “The German constitutional court will discuss the break of the no-bailout clause, the inflationary bias of purchasing government bonds by the European Central Bank, the danger of uncontrollable financial obligations and the rights of national parliaments of both debtor and creditor countries.” And if there is one thing Germans are never happy to hear about, it is “inflationary bias” of any one thing.

So far the suit had been delayed, however the fact that the hearing is coming just in time for the passage of the second Greek bailout is likely about to ruffle a few feathers. As Anotnis Karampatzos, a law lecturer at the University of Athens says, “Whatever the outcome of this dispute might be, one thing is sure: the verdict of the constitutional court will affect the political scene in Germany as well as in Europe. This is not only because of the great importance of the case itself, but also because of the status of this court, whose decisions are always treated as landmarks in European jurisprudence.”

From Athens News:

Since it was approved in the German parliament, the law for ratification of the aid packages falls under the jurisdiction of the constitutional court, Germany’s highest court, based in Karlsruhe. The court has not provided any information about the duration of the hearing nor the verdict date.

Some believe this is just more hot air, as there is no way that the law could possibly stand in the way of organized…
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Greece Deputy PM Warns Of Tanks In The Streets, Mass Suicides, If Second Bailout Voted Down By Greek Parliament

Courtesy of Tyler Durden

With just days left until the crucial vote on passing the Greek mid-term austerity package, the assured destruction rhetoric used by the Greek status quo has hit fever pitch. Just to make sure the message is not lost on the broader population that Europe’s banks will not admit defeat in a vote that could end the kleptocratic cartel’s hegemony for ever, Greece’s Deputy Prime Minister Theodoros Pangalos has blasted suggestions that it would be better for his country to abandon the euro and return to the drachma as an “immense stupidity”. He didn’t stop there. For dramatic impact, the Greek vice PM also said that the country would devolve into complete anarchy, with tanks roaming the streets, a population on the verge of civil war, with mass suicides, just for dramatic impact, should bankers not get their way. More or less in line with the Hank Paulson script that is regurgitated every few years when the Ponzi system is on the verge of imploding yet again.

From AFP:

“Those who say this are extremely stupid. While they may be analysts, university professors or economists, saying that is an immense stupidity,” Pangalos told daily Spanish newspaper El Mundo in an interview published Sunday.

Debt-wracked Greece has been told by European peers that it cannot hope to continue receiving aid from a 110-billion-euro rescue package agreed with the EU and the IMF last year without biting budget reforms and privatisations.

The Greek parliament will vote on an austerity package this week but some economists have argued that Athens needs to restructure its debt and leave the euro to become economically competitive again.

Returning to the drachma would mean that on the following day banks would be surrounded by terrified people trying to withdraw their money, the army would have to protect them with tanks because there would not be enough police,” said Pangalos.

There would be riots everywhere, shops would be empty, some people would throw themselves out the window … And it would also be a disaster for the entire European economy.”

And since we continue to live in bizarro world, the inverse truth is that this is likely a far more accurate description of reality should the mid-term package be voted through in just a few day, although with the country on a general
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Floodwaters Surge At Fort Calhoun Nuclear Power Plant After Floodwall Fails

Courtesy of Tyler Durden

We hadn’t previously discussed the situation at the Fort Calhoun, Nebraska nuclear power plant, as there was still a possibility that it was containable, and the deterioration had been largely blown out of proportion. Alas now that the Missouri River flood waters have penetrated the last ditch water-filled wall, and have since surrounded the  containment buildings and other vital areas of a Nebraska nuclear plant, it may be time to get a little more concerned. As Reuters reports, “The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) said the breach in the 2,000-foot (600 meters) inflatable berm around the Fort Calhoun station occurred around 1:25 a.m. local time. More than 2 feet (60 cm) of water rushed in around containment buildings and electrical transformers at the 478-megawatt facility located 20 miles (30 km) north of Omaha.” Naturally, the severity of the situation is being downplayed by the NRC, very much the way Tepco and Japanese authorities pretended the Fukushima situation was under control, until it was uncovered that there had been plant meltdown within hours of the tsunami: “Reactor shutdown cooling and spent-fuel pool cooling were unaffected, the NRC said. The plant, operated by the Omaha Public Power District, has been off line since April for refueling.” That’s one version of the story. A far better one would be calling up the Octogenarian of Omaha and upon getting voicemail, inquiring in what part of the world he is currently residing until the Fort Calhoun situation is actually fixed. To everyone else, we would merely suggest they copycat Buffet, especially after seeing the picture of the plant below (taken June 16, which means the situation now is far worse), which makes the flooding at Fukushima look tame by comparison.

More from Reuters:

Crews activated emergency diesel generators after the breach, but restored normal electrical power by Sunday afternoon, the NRC said.

Buildings at the Fort Calhoun plant are watertight, the agency said. It noted that the cause of the berm breach is under investigation.

NRC Chairman Gregory Jaczko and other officials planned to visit the site on Monday.

Jaczko will also visit the Cooper Nuclear Station near Brownville, Nebraska, another facility that has been watched closely with Missouri River waters rising from heavy rains and snow melt.

And some more from the Omaha World Herald:


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Zero Hedge

The Mainstream Media Is Asking For A Government Bailout Via Censorship

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Submitted by Mike Krieger via Liberty Blitzkrieg blog,

The current controversy is different. Many people in Washington are irate over Wikileaks — not because the email were untrue but because they proved what many had long suspected . . . that Washington is a highly corrupt place full of truly despicable people. For pe...



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Phil's Favorites

Naked Capitalism Threatens Lawsuit Over Washington Post Over "Fake News" Story; Obama Starts Russia Witch Hunt

Courtesy of Mish.

Earlier today, president Obama started a witch hunt based on Russia hacking claims.

In the second Russia-related story of the day, Yves Smith, author of Naked Capitalism, considers a lawsuit against the Washington Post for an extremely sloppy article on “Fake News”, primarily about Russia that mentioned her website.

The article listed Naked Capitalism, Zero Hedge, and 200 other sites for “spreading fake news”. Included in the list were Counterpunch, the Drudge Report, Truthdig, and Truth-out.

I failed to make the grade and almost feel slighted.

Please consider Washington Post on the ‘Fake News’ Hot Seat.

The...



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ValueWalk

Aswath Damodaran Session 24: Acquisition Valuation

By VW Staff. Originally published at ValueWalk.

Acquisitions are exciting and fun to be part of but they are not great value creators and in today’s sessions, I tried to look at some of the reasons. While the mechanical reasons, using the wrong discount rate or valuing synergy & control right, are relatively easy to fix, the underlying problems of hubris, ego and over confidence are much more difficult to navigate. There are ways to succeed, though, and that is to go where the odds are best: small targets, preferably privately held or subsidiaries of public companies, with cost cutting as your primary synergy benefit. If you get a chance, take a look at a big M&A deal and see if you can break it down into its components.

]]> Get The Timeless Reading eBook in PDF

Get the entire 10-part series on Timeless Re...



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Biotech

The Medicines Company: Insider Buying

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

I'm seeing huge insider buying in the biotech company The Medicines Company (MDCO). The price has already moved up around 7%, but these buys are significant, in the millions of dollars range. ~ Ilene

 

 

 

Insider transaction table and buying vs. selling graphic above from insidercow.com.

Chart below from Yahoo.com

...

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Kimble Charting Solutions

Stocks & Bonds testing 20-year inflection points, says Joe Friday!

Courtesy of Chris Kimble.

Below looks at the patterns on the S&P 500 and the Yield on the 10-year note (Inverted to look like bond prices), since the late 1980’s. A rare test of support and resistance by stocks and bonds, is in play right now!

CLICK ON CHART TO ENLARGE

The S&P 500, has remained inside of rising channel (1), for the majority of the past 20-years.

The 10-year yield (Inverted) has remained inside of rising channel (2), for the major...



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Market News

News You Can Use From Phil's Stock World

 

Financial Markets and Economy

Uncertainty Looms as Triple-Leveraged Oil Bets Go Dark (The Wall Street Journal)

Thursday is the final day of ordinary trading for a pair of popular exchange-traded products that deliver turbo-charged returns on the price of crude oil.

China warns WTO members not to use non-market economy clause after December 11 (Reuters)

China's Commerce Ministry said on Friday it would take "necessary measures" if World Trade Organization members continue to use a non-market economy clause in its to WTO deal to assess dumping duties against it after Dec. 11.

...



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Members' Corner

How To Poop At A Party?

Courtesy of Nattering Naybob.

Once again, it's "Toilet Thursday" or "Thursday in the Loo", so we follow up on Second Hand Stink with How to Poop At A Party. 

This hilarious video demonstrates how to control the Shituation when needing to Poopulate at a gathering, in no uncertain terms. 

We hope this recurring bathroom humor theme "shits" well with our readers. So please do relax, drop the cursor below, click and enjoy.

...

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Chart School

Dow Jones Gann Angle Update

Courtesy of Read the Ticker.

When the Dow Jones moves the media must have an explanation for it. However the insiders have the nod to what is going on.

The media story so far is that since the TRUMP win, managers have been rotating their portfolios to represent TRUMP trends (lower taxes, go easy on the 'too big to fail' Wall Street banks, more jobs for Americans). Prior the election the stock market was set up for a HILLARY win, due to more of the same, status quo, FED support. But....

Using Richard Ney logic, the short answer is, stocks were always going up and the election results do not matter nor would a higher 10 yr bond or lackluster fundamentals. The real story is the marke...

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Promotions

Phil's Stock World's Las Vegas Conference!

 

Come join us for the Phil's Stock World's Conference in Las Vegas!

Date:  Sunday, Feb 12, 2017 and Monday Feb 13, 2017.            

Beginning Time:  8:00 am Sunday morning

Location: Caesar's Palace in Las Vegas

Notes

Caesar's has tentatively offered us rooms for $189 on Saturday night and $129 for Sunday night. However, we have to sign the contract ASAP. We need at least 10 people to pay me via Paypal or we may lose the best rate for the rooms. (Once we are guaranteed ten attendees, I will put up instructions to call the hotel for individual rooms.)

The more people who sign up,...



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OpTrader

Swing trading portfolio - week of December 5th, 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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Digital Currencies

Largest US Bitcoin Exchange Is "Extremely Concerned" With IRS Crackdown Targeting Its Users

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Last Thursday we reported that in a startling development seeking to breach the privacy veil of users of America's largest bitcoin exchange, the IRS filed court papers seeking a judicial order to serve a so-called “John Doe” summons on the San Francisco-based Bitcoin platform Coinbase.

The government’s request is part of a bitcoin tax-evasion probe, and se...



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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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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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FeedTheBull - Top Stock market and Finance Sites



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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