Phil's Newsletter

Friday Fizzle – BOJ and GDP Disappoint Investors, Again

M-m-m-m-my Kuroda!  

As you can see from the Nikkei chart – it's been a wild morning already as the BOJ ended up doing nothing, sending the Nikkei down 600 (3.6%), then back up 600, then down another 600 then back up 300, down 300 up 500 and now settling down 120 overall – what a mess!  Imagine what would happen if they ever tightened (don't worry, not going to happen). 

Still, lack of loosening is tightening as far as Japanese traders are concerned and the Yen blasted 2.5% higher, which is about as much as a currency ever moves in a single day and we're back to just 103 Yen to the Dollar, well below the 110 the BOJ and the Keiretsu demand to keep the exports flowing.  

The BOJ left the door open for more easing at the September meeting by saying there would be a "comprehensive assessment" on the effects of easing but I think the Western Press is misinterpreting it as the Japanese don't like to say no and this, to me, sounds like a no, which is not surprising given the INSANE amount of easing they've already committed (yes, like a crime) in the past 2.5 years of Abenomics.

Sure it's only Yen but 400Tn of them begin to be real money – close to $4Tn, which is about the balance sheet of our own Federal reserve except that our GDP is $20Tn and Japan's GDP is now less than $5Tn and falling fast.  Nonetheless, no matter how low rates go in Japan (-0.1% now) – they have been unable to dissuade people from buying JGBs – after all, getting 99% of your money back after 10 years keeps you well ahead of their 0.4% annual deflation, right?

This is not the CPI chart of a healthy economy folks and Japan is $12.5Tn in debt which is, if you care to count 1,287,000,000,000,000 Yen – that's 1.287 QUADRILLION Yen in debt – not even Zimbabwe had enough fake money to cover that sort of deficit and Japan is adding another 10% of the GDP ($500Bn) to the debt pile every year.  This is why the BOJ seriously
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Thursday Failure – Fed Does not Inspire the Bulls with Inaction


That's what we got from our Fed yesterday in a statement that held no new action and not indication of when there would be action and nothing is no longer good enough to sustain record high market levels – especially with the very mediocre earnings that are being delivered in the broad markets

As you can see from the Fear and Greed Index, the greed is still fairly extreme and the complacency is extreme too with the VIX down under 15 this morning and Treasuries (TLT), which we're short on, are still up at the $140 line post-Fed – as if they still might turn around and loosen further than they already have.  

Arguing for the loose camp, the Atlanta Fed released their GDP Now Forecast for the end of July and Q2 has been downgraded 40% from 3% to now 1.8% over the course of the month so now we understand why the Fed didn't raise rates yesterday – the economy is much worse off than people have been supposing! 

Evolution of Atlanta Fed GDPNow real GDP forecast

Since the BS upgrades began (which we said were BS all the way up) in May, the Dow has gained 1,000 points, from 17,500 to 18,500 and the S&P is up from 2,050 to 2,165 and those are both ridiculous in a flat economy and it was these RIDICULOUS upgrades to GDP outlook that acted as the catalyst to turn us around in the first place!  Here's my commentary on the subject from May 27th (GDP Friday – Yellen Spins Us Into the Holiday Weekend):  

…now we have the Atlanta Fed providing supporting data as they have raised their GDP Now forecast by 100% this month.  

Forget the fact that the core Durable Goods were terrible or that Auto Sales are falling off or that Consumer Comfort is

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Wild Wednesday – Japan Drops 28Tn Yen Stimulus Bomb Ahead of the Fed

What a morning already. 

Japan's PM, Shinzo Abe made a surprise announcement of a 28 TRILLION Yen stimulus package just two days ahead of the BOJ meeting.  28Tn Yen is "just" $265Bn but Japan's economy is 1/4 the size of the US, so think of it as a US $1Tn stimulus – that is impressive by any measure! 

As you can see on the chart, it's been a muted reaction by the Yen so far as we wait for details on Abe's plan, wait for our own Fed to make a decision (2pm) and then wait for the BOJ's decision on Friday so a lot of waiting is in our immediate future and, meanwhile, let's talk about yesterday and yesterday's FANTASTIC call to short the Futures at:

  • 18,450 on the Dow (/YM), low was 18,311 for a $659 per contract gain
  • 2,165 on the S&P (/ES), low was 2,154 for a $550 per contract gain
  • 4,650 on the Nasdaq (/NQ), low was 4,640 for a $200 per contract gain

The Russell never went below our shorting line at 1,205 but we ran up to 1,213 and I called a short there in our Live Member Chat room and we caught a dive back to 1,205 for an $800 per contract gain on that one – TWICE! 

Today we're looking much higher with the Russell over 1,215, Dow 18,450 again, S&P 2,167.50 and the Nasdaq is testing 4,700 (/NQ Futures) thanks to an upside surprise from Apple's earnings report.  AAPL is a key long at PSW and yesterday morning I said to our Members:

AAPL/Selozi – Talk about stupidly undervalued stocks.  I hope AAPL misses so we can double down on our longs but expectations are so low, I'm not sure they can miss them.  36 analysts cover this stock and they are expecting just $42Bn in sales, off 15% from last year's $49.6Bn.  Will be very interesting to see what actually happens but the stock is already down 30% from last summer's $130, even though they

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Technical Tuesday – You Call That a Correction?


That's our shorting line on the S&P 500 Futures (/ES) and the significant line below that is the S&Ps 15% line on our Big Chart at 2,127.50 so that's the range we'll be looking for if we're going to have the beginnings of a proper correction.  Anything less than that is just a blip as we consolidate for (and I hate to say it) a move higher.

Of couse, we don't need to go all the way back to 2,127.50 to make money.  Last Thursday, we laid out our shorting lines from our Live Member Chat Room, right in the morning post and they were (and still are):

18,500 is lined up with 2,165 on /ES, 4,650 on /NQ and 1,205 on /TF, we want to see them all below to play a short.  

Then on Friday, I noted we made a profit of $500 per contact at 2,155 so of course we did it again when the levels broke again yesterday.  Learning to make money in the markets is a lot like learning to be a great stage performer – you learn your part, do it well and then learn to consistently repeat your performance over and over again.  Much like most rock bands – no one in the audience is interested in your new stuff – just play the hits please! 

S&P Futures expire in September and sentiment has them trailing the actual index, which finished at 2,168.50, 6.50 above the Futures levels, so keep that 6.5-point difference in mind when we're looking at the S&P chart and talking about the headline levels vs. the Futures.

As you can see from the hourly S&P chart,  yesterday's 13-point dip hardly registers in the bigger picture and we're still costing along the upper end of the 50-hour moving average at the top end of the bullish range.  It's going to take more than a blip like that to scare off the dip buyers – who have been rewarded by the Fed(s) for their aggressive behavior pretty much since 2009!

There's not much to do but watch and wait ahead of our Fed's announcement on Wednesday afternoon and the BOJ on Friday morning and we can expect to drift along near the highs at least until we year from our own Central Bank tomorrow. 


Monday Monetary Madness – G20 Promises to “Fix” the Markets

What a World, what a world

Unlike the wicked witch, who uttered that phrase during the previous Global Depression, liquidity has been good for the markets so far as the World is swimming in it and, even this week, more is expected from the Bank of Japan on Friday.  The entire G20 got together this weekend and promised to use "all policy tools" to lift global growth:

"While the weekend's signals from the G20 meeting in China were welcome, investors were bracing for a hectic week that includes a U.S. Federal Reserve meeting, European bank stress tests and what could be another super-sized slug of stimulus from Japan. 'The Bank of Japan is really the one that is front and centre this time with the all talk around 'helicopter money," said TD's Richard Kelly, "if they disappoint, which I think is probably more likely, then we are likely to see risk assets coming off.'"

I've been calling for CASH!!! all summer and so far, so wrong on that one as we make fresh record highs pretty much every day since the Brexit but now Goldman Sachs (GS) has decided to agree with me, putting out their own 5-point warning to clients:

  1. Valuations are already at historical extremes. The S&P 500 trades at a forward P/E of 17.6x, ranking in the 89th percentile since 1976. At 18.4x, the median constituent ranks in the 99th percentile. Most other metrics such as P/B, EV/EBITDA, and EV/Sales paint a similar picture. These valuations are only justifiable because of the historically low interest rate environment.
  2. Zero profit growth is not consistent with high stock valuations. Sluggish global growth and low inflation along with negative interest rate policies in Europe and Asia have led to record low US bond yields. Consistent with this backdrop, 2Q results will show the seventh consecutive quarter of declining year/year operating EPS (-3%, but +1% ex-Energy). Despite near-record margins, adjusted S&P 500 EPS have been flat for three straight years.
  3. Many Financials will have lower profits if low interest rates persist. Historically low yields squeeze the net interest income of banks and make liabilities harder to meet for insurance companies. Our Bank equity research team this week cut their EPS forecasts by 5%-7%. The fall in Treasury yields explains most

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Friday Fallout – Yes, the Markets Can Go Down As Well As Up!

What a week.

Congratulations if you caught our call to short the Dow at 18,500 yesterday morning, that was good for a profit of $500 on each contract as we tested 18,400 in the afternoon – not bad for a day's work!  Our other winning short index calls were:

  • 2,165 on the S&P Futures (/ES), which fell to 2,155 – up $500 per contract
  • 4,650 on the Nasdaq (/NQ), which fell to 4,630 – up $400 per contract 
  • 1,205 on the Russell (/TF), which fell to 1,198 – up $700 per contact

As you can see from the Dow chart above, we took a few losses poking short on the Dow during the week but it's all worth it when you catch a big winner on the way down.  This morning, of course, we're moving back up on no volume – which is why we end up shorting in the first place.   

Per our 5% Rule™, the week's fall from 18,550 to 18,400 is 150 points so a weak bounce is 30 points to 18,430 and a strong bounce is 60 points to 18,460 and 18,475 is the 50% line, which is where we'd poke short again with very tight stops and then, once the strong bounce line fails – we'd look for shorting opportunities at the strong bounce lines on all our indexes again.

Despite successfully playing for a bounce on oil and gasoline in yesterday's Live Member Chat Room, we are generally expecting a repeat of last Fall's fall and that is going to be bad news for the broad market as there is already a severe disconnect between Energy Sector stocks and the price of the energy they sell.

Like much of the S&P, a combination of financial engineering (and note that Business Insider is now a lot more critical of Microsoft's (MSFT) earnings than I was on Wednesday) and completely irrational exuberance has led to unrealistic valuations that even the loosest of Fed models won't be able to sustain.  With Exxon (XOM) and Chevron (CVX) both heavy Dow…
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Thursday Failure – BOJ, ECB Go On Hold, Disappointing Bulls

No more easing?

The BOJ's Koroda said this morning that there is "no need and no possibility for helicopter money."   That's a pretty firm line in the sand and, as you can see on the Nikkei chart, it led to a very quick 425-point sell-off (2.5%) which is in the process of failing the strong bounce of 170 points from 15,575 to 16,745 and failing the weak bounce again at 16,660 will be a bad sign for the /NKD Futures according to our fabulous 5% Rule™.

We're wathing the Nikkei but we already shorted the Dow and the US indexes in our Live Member Chat Room this morning, when I said to ur Members:

18,500 is lined up with 2,165 on /ES, 4,650 on /NQ and 1,205 on /TF, we want to see them all below to play a short.  

I have been saying for some time that the Central Banks have reached the end of the line on QE but clearly the bulls in the market did not believe me and our recent attempts to short the Dow have not ended well but now the ECB has also put rates on hold this morning and that paves the way for the Fed to RAISE rates at their next meeting (next Wednesday, 27th).

We'll see how the markets actually react to the end of the Free Money era.  It certainly needed to happen as we've been on a path to insanity and it's a lot better to begin a controlled deceleration of QE than to keep priming the pump until the bubble explodes in our faces.  How the markets will react to a mature decision remains to be seen.

Draghi, of course, is still talking a big game, saying the ECB stands ready to do something while, as usual, doing nothing.  Those who thought Brexit would lead to more QE will be bitterly disappointed but perhaps their too-early buying frenzy in aniticipation of ECB action was itself a factor in deterring the ECB from acting?

The IMF has issued an urgent call for the G20 to "adopt policies to boost growth and avert a global slowdown" saying Governments should be prepared to provide fiscal stimulus while the…
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Wednesday Weirdness – Microsoft Rallies 5% After Failing the GAAP

Generally Accepted Accounted Principles (GAAP).

According to Investopedia: "GAAP are imposed on companies so that investors have a minimum level of consistency in the financial statements they use when analyzing companies for investment purposes. GAAP cover such things as revenue recognitionbalance sheet item classification and outstanding share measurements. Companies are expected to follow GAAP rules when reporting their financial data via financial statements. If a financial statement is not prepared using GAAP principles, be very wary!"

Let's keep those guidlines in mind as we discuss Microsoft's (MSFT) earnings last night as they are a fine expample of the kind of BULLSHIT that is permeating the market these days.  MSFT's GAAP Revenue was $20.6Bn and GAAP Earnings were 0.39 per share, missing by a mile but, after adding back "Windows 10 deferrals to revenue" and "impairment, integration and restructuring charges", they are able to boost their non-GAAP reported earnings to $22.6Bn and that extra $2Bn of revenues, which were actual expenses but have been erasted from the report, drops straight to the non-GAAP bottom line and almost doubled non-GAAP earnings to 0.69/share – a nice beat! 

And that's not the end of it as MSFT also made non-GAAP (non-Generally Accepted) adjustments to their taxes and reports that they will only pay $225M on $3.3Bn in earnings (7%).  We can be outraged about this on many levels but the earnings weren't real so it's really not fair to expect them to pay taxes on their fake earnings, is it?  It is, however, "fair" to expect invesors to pay $55 for the stock this morning, up from $53 yesterday based on all these fake earnings.  After all, the investors are just suckers, born every minute and growing up to hold the bags. 

Microsoft is part of the Big Con, which is moving the whole market to all-time highs.  It's a significant stock on all the indexes so it will lead us higher this morning – even as the broad market continues to sell off as the big boys run for the exits during this "rally".  By holding up just a few large-cap stocks, the Fund Managers and Banksters can cover their tracks as they sell off the rest of their holdings – all the while
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Testy Tuesday – DAX 10,000, Russell 1,200 Again

Watch Germany's DAX closely:

That 10,000 line is hyper-critical – it's their Must Hold Line and, as you can see on the daily chart – it's barely been holding and just failed again this morning as Germany's ZEW Economic Sentiment survey showed a horriffic post-Brexit (July 4-18) drop to -6.8 from +19.2 in June and miles below the forecast of leading economorons, who expected +9 as the DAX rallied 800 points during the period in question.

Even worse was the assessment of Eurozone Sentiment, which fell from 20.2 in June to -14.7 in July.  This indicates that Europe is not out of the woods just yet and we, at PSW, certainly got that impression from the way the Euro Stoxx Index failed to get back over 3,000 last week but, so far, we are still alone in our bearish veiw of the market.

Volume on the S&P ETF (SPY) yesterday was 54M, a new record low for the year and about half the average volume for 2016, which is less than 2/3 of 2015s average volume so, if you are buying stocks – you're pretty much alone these days.  I gave a little lecture on why low volumes lead to stock rallies in our Live Trading Webinar and it's things like this that keep us in CASH!!! and on the sidelines – because this whole move up (8.5%) since the Brexit downturn has come on extremely low volume.

SPX DAILYAs you can see from Dave Fry's note on Friday's S&P chart, volumes have been going down and down and the only "people" buying are the Central Banksters, who are desperately propping up the markets lest people begin to panic and start causing liquidity crises which the CBs are in no condition to deal with at the moment.

Unfortunately, while it's easy enough to push the market to record highs when Central Banks step in and begin buying up equities – sustaining them there is quite another story and here's why:

Let's say you have a car lot with 100 VW Beetle Convertibles and you bought them for $20,000 and you hope to sell them for

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Monday Morning Markdown – Corporate Profits and US Economy Shrink

What a busy weekend.

Turkey almost had a coup but it's already over and you can see that spike down on the end of Friday's chart that shows you the entire hour that the markets cared about a military coup in one of our NATO allies.   

I've already spent more time discussing it than the market has spent caring and I'm not even going to bother mentioning our own Government using the coup in Turkey to slip in GDP revisions under the radar that were revised down from 2.6% in 2016 to 1.9%.  Hey, what's a 26% downgrade between friends?  Next year is forecast at 2.5% (down 0.1%) and we have 2018 and 2019 to look forward to, at 2.2% growth.

Of course, what really matters is earnings, I guess – but they are sucking too and 90 S&P 500 companies (18%) will report this week and Reuters is projecting a 4.7% decline in earnings from last year but don't worry, last quarter was down 5% from last year and we're at record highs 3 months later!  

As I noted on Wednesday ("Record High Rally Based on BS Stock Buyback Binge"), the radically decreased stock base is papering over all those negative proifts and making everything look fine(ish) so we can all keep fiddling while Rome burns – and don't even get me started on what a mess Italy still is

18% ($360Bn) of Italy's bank loans are in technical default.  France is the next "problem" country with 5% vs 1.5% in the UK, Germany and most normal countries.  While the Government in Rome and the ECB have kicked this can down the road over and over again, do not kid yourself – Italy is the next Greece

In two weeks, the European Banking Authority will publish their semi-annual report which will highlight the banks' weak capital positions at the same time as Global Banks are reporting their weak earnings – I wonder if investors will be able to connect the dots?   We flipped short on the Banking Sector last week with FAS.  

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Market News

News You Can Use From Phil's Stock World


Financial Markets and Economy

Struggling U.S. Economy Propped Up by Gain in Consumer Spending (Bloomberg)

The U.S. economy stumbled in the first half of 2016 as companies retrenched, leaving consumers to shoulder the burden of sustaining growth heading into the presidential election.

The stock market's ridiculously boring streak won't last (Business Insider)

The s...

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Phil's Favorites

Crisis Actors and a Reichstag Fire


Crisis Actors and a Reichstag Fire

Courtesy of John Mauldin

This week your Outside the Box is from my friend Ben Hunt, who writes his letter under the title Epsilon Theory. This edition is a little darker than usual, and certainly more of a think piece. A central argument that Ben makes in Epsilon Theory is that it is Narrativethat is the driver of politics, economics, and social interaction generally. The Narrative is what we all (mostly) believe and act upon. Investors generally believe that quantitative easing is going to result in a rising stock market, so they act as if another round of QE and continued low or negative rates are good for the equity markets; and thus the game...

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Zero Hedge


Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

MacVladimir The Cat: The Napoleon of Globalist Crime 

MacVladimir a Mystery Cat: he's called the Hidden Paw—
For he's the master criminal who defies globalists with a guffaw.
He's the bafflement of Scotland Yard, the Neocon's despair:
For when they reach the scene of crime—MacVladimir's not there!

MacVladimir, MacVladimir, there's no one like Ma...

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Chart School

S&P 500 Snapshot: Weak GDP? No Worries!

Courtesy of Doug Short's Advisor Perspectives.

The potential mover and shaker this morning was the surprisingly weak Advance Estimate of GDP for Q2, not to mention the downward revisions to the two previous quarters. But no worries for the market! The S&P 500 hits its -0.30% intraday low about 30 minutes into the trade and then bounced to its 0.32% intraday high during the lunch hour -- a record intraday high for that matter. A bit of zigzagging in the afternoon cut the closing gain in half to 0.16%, just a tad shy of a record close.

The bond market took a somewhat different view. The yield on the 10-year dropped six basis points to close at 1.46%. That's nine BPs off its all-time closing low and 11 BPs below its close on July 22, when the S&P 500 set its latest record close.


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NetSuite Inc Stock Soars On Oracle Corporation Bid

By Jacob Wolinsky. Originally published at ValueWalk.

NetSuite Inc (NYSE:N) is soaring this morning as Oracle Corporation (NASDAQ:ORCL) has made a bid to buy the company for $9.3 billion. This deal has been rumored for some time but obviously few expected such a large premium or did not think the bid was certaintly coming as the stock is up about 18 percent at the time of this writing which is a lot for a tech giant. Here is what the sell side is saying.

NetSuite – analysts react


Should the transaction take place, Oracle would pay about 9x NTM EV / revenue (based on consensus estimates for NetSuite), above the average multiple paid in our precedent SaaS Software acquisitions analysis of 6.8x . Additionally, Oracl...

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Mapping The Market

Illusion of Choice

From Jean-Luc:

Looks like we are down to about 10 companies for our consumer goods:

Just like banks, airlines and cable companies! 

The Illusion of Choice in Consumer Brands

Explore the full-size version of the above graphic in all its glory.

If today’s infographic looks familiar, that’s because it originates from a well-circulated report that Oxfam International puts together to show consolidation i...

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Digital Currencies

Judge Rules Bitcoin Isn't Money Because It "Can't be Hidden Under A Mattress"

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

By Everett Numbers via

In a landmark decision, a Florida judge dismissed charges of money laundering against a Bitcoin seller on Monday following expert testimony showing state law did not apply to the cryptocurrency.

Michell Espinoza was charged with three felony charges related to money laundering i...

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Kimble Charting Solutions

Junk Bonds at important inflection point, should impact stocks!

Courtesy of Chris Kimble.

Junk bonds have been quality at sending Risk On and Risk Off message to the broad stock market. Below looks at Junk Bond ETF JNK over the past decade.

JNK finds itself at an important price point below and what it does in the upcoming couple of weeks could become a big influence on the Risk On/Risk Off trade.



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Swing trading portfolio - week of July 25th, 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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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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This Is Why Biotech Stocks May Explode Again

Reminder: Pharmboy and Ilene are available to chat with Members.

Here's an interesting article from Investor's Business Daily arguing that biotech stocks are beginning to recover from their recent declines, notwithstanding current weakness.

This Is Why Biotech Stocks May Explode Again



After a three-year bull run that more than quadrupled its value by its peak last July, IBD’s Medical-Biomed/Biotech Industry Group plunged 50% by early February, hurt by backlashes against high drug prices and mergers that seek to lower corporate taxes.


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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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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 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.

Thank you for you time!

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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