by phil - February 8th, 2016 8:23 am
That's the word from CitiBank, which is SUPPOSED to be the voice of reason in these markets. When Banksters tell us to get out of something – it's usually time to get in and, this morning, I put out a Trade Alert to our Members (and tweeted here) to take a long on Oil Futures (/CL) at the $30 line (with tight stops below) as well as lines on various indexes I detailed in the Alert.
Of course, we warned you last week that the market would likely turn back down and I detailed our hedges on the Ultra-Short S&P ETF (SDS) at $22.50 and mentioned we were long on Gold (/YG Futures) at $1,155 and Silver (/SI Futures) at $14.90 and Natural Gas (/NGK6 May Futures) at $2.15 on Thursday. This morning they are at:
- SDS $23.70 – up 5.3%
- Gold $1,180 – up $8,000 per contract
- Silver $15 – up $1,250 per contract
- Natural Gas $2.27 - up $1,200 per contract
Our one loser (so far) was Copper (/HG Futures), which dropped from $2.12 to $2.075 for a loss of $1,125 per contract. Of course stopping out your losers is important with Futures and we'd be happy to get back in either over $2.10 or off the $2.05 line (with tight stops below).
In Friday morning's post we detailed two major hedges for the S&P (SDS) and the Nasdaq (SQQQ) using the Ultra-Shorts and, of course, those are both paying off like gangbusters as Friday was already a bad day and the markets are following through this morning. We also detailed a trade idea for Barrick Gold (ABX) to leverage the run in gold – also doing fantastically, thank you! We're hoping for a bounce but really we're using our bullish future bets, pre-market to lock in the tremendous gains of our index hedges at what we THINK might be the bottom again at 1,850 on the S&P.
Nattering Naybob had a very good summary of the weeks events, reminding our Members yesterday afternoon of my Wednesday warning that we were simply in a "dead cat bounce" and likely to fall…
by phil - February 5th, 2016 8:13 am
What a crazy start to 2016!
Of course, it is no crazier than the 3rd quarter of 2015 so far, when we had our August crash followed by a slow September bounce that led into a mega-rally that closed our year off back at the highs. At the moment, we are playing with the premise that it's the highs that were wrong – NOT our current 1,900 level on the S&P. We're not expecting any big rally here – just consolidation.
This is nothing new, of course. Back on December, 2nd, in: "Which Way Wednesday – S&P 2,100 Yet Again," I noted:
The S&P gets to 2,100 and we short /ES Futures at 2,100 (with tight stops above the line) and Russell (/TF) Futures below the 1,200 line and Nikkei (/NKD) Futures below the 20,000 line and then, tomorrow or Friday, I'll tell you how much money we made shorting and you'll say "why do I never catch these great trade ideas" and I'll say it's because you're not patient enough to wait for the pattern to reset itself and just make the obvious play.
This is the 11th time the S&P has been over 2,100 since May and, so far, it's been like a little money machine for us all year long on the short side. I know this time may be different and the last 10 times may have been different too, which is why we stop out if we don't get confirmation from the other indexes that things are toppy but, when it works – it's good for $250, $500, $1,000+ PER CONTRACT in the Futures at $50 per point to the downside.
By the way, I know we've been talking a lot about the Futures lately and that's because our portfolios are mainly in CASH!!! That means we have plenty on the sidelines to play with and the quick in and out…
by phil - February 4th, 2016 8:12 am
That's right, we did it again!
Yesterday's Live Trading Webinar was open to the public (see yesterday's post) and, during the session, we found a trade on the Russell 2000 that made $500 per contract and, into the close of the Webinar, we decided to go long on the Nikkei (/NKD) at 16,985, looking to get back to 17,200 and we NAILED IT into the close for a $1,075 per contract win in just hours! Futures trading is fun – don't be afraid – check out our Options Opportunity Portfolio and get access to all of our Live Trading Webinars.
Also in yesterday's morning post (and on our Twitter feed) I mentioned the Alert we sent out to our Members in the morning, noting the following long plays in the Futures:
- 1,900 on the S&P (/ES), closed 1,907 – up $350 per contract
- 16,100 on the Dow (/YM), closed at 16,320 – up $1,100 per contract
- 0.975 on Gasoline (/RB), closed at $1.045 – up $2,940 per contract
- $30 on Oil (/CL), closed at $32.50 – up $2,500 per contract
Yes the futures are risky (and we were down before we were up in the Webinar) but they give you a tremendous advantage in volatile markets as you can use them to better balance your portfolio before the market opens or after it closes – rather than sitting and sweating while you wait for the opening bell to trade. Since we practice a generally Balanced Portfolio Approach at Philstockworld, we mostly play the Futures for fun but the experience we get while having fun really comes in handy when there is an after-hours surprise in the market. You've probably seen this commercial recently:
And no, it doesn't matter who your broker is (most of us use TD's Think or Swim) but this commercial hits it right on the head – being able to trade the Futures gives you a tremendous edge on the market. Let's say you only used one of our trade ideas and made just $1,000 yesterday on a single contract. What percentage of your portfolio is that? How…
by phil - February 3rd, 2016 8:13 am
I was almost going to just put up my Jan 13th post again.
That one was titled "Weak Bounce Wednesday" and we opened that day at S&P 1,923 after bouncing almost exactly as high as we had predicted in Monday's (Jan 11) "Meaningless Monday Market Movement." This is why "Groundhog Day" is one of my favorite movies of all time. In that movie, Bill Murray plays Phil (great name), a weatherman, who gets trapped living the same day over and over again – yet he's the only one who is aware of it – for everyone else, they've never seen that day before.
That sums up my job very nicely. All day long I talk to people and reporters who are constantly surprised by things I have seen happen over and over and over again. Each time, they have no idea what will happen next and, while there certainly are variations from time to time – I'm able to predict the outcomes with a pretty good degree of accuracy, not because I'm smart – but simply because I'm paying attention. And I'm not the only one – this is from Dave Fry this morning:
Like Bill Murray it feels like a bad Groundhog’s Day again as markets moved right back down in volatile, what I believe, is a descending spiral.
For bulls, just when you think markets are ready for a big time rally, (nearly 400 points higher just last Friday), bears moved back in taking charge once again. I further projected on just last week Thursday we could expect a countertrend rally in the S&P from 1902 to 1956. We hit 1940 on Friday and have fallen once again to close at 1904.
Paying attention to repeating patterns does more than make our Members look smart – it makes them lots of MONEY because we're able to place our bets accordingly.
by phil - February 2nd, 2016 8:33 am
Ted Cruz won Iowa.
That is the scariest thing I have to say this morning. The Koch-powered Conservative is the GOP's leading Climate denier and, if he becomes President of the United States, you can pretty much guarantee he'll put a stop to the agreements we made in Paris last year to work with the rest of the World to help stop Global Warming – especially as it's projected to be a $12Tn effort over 25 years on our part.
Of course, many (almost all) scientists would argue that a failure to do this will lead to the extinction of the Human Race but that's considered a win for Cruz's Father's ministry "Purifying Fire International" who are anxious to finally get to the end of days they've all been praying for. Don't take my word for it – listen to his Dad.
Anyway, enough about Cruz, hopefully this is a one-off and the World will not end because Americans make the worst possible choice come November. Meanwhile, it may in fact be the end of days for oil, as it's back to $30 after an aborted (sorry Ted) run at $35 just last week. Low oil prices hit BP so hard that profits are down 90% from last year and, unadjusted, BP is taking a $6.5Bn loss but officially a 2015 net profit of $196M, down from $2.2Bn last year. In good news for oil prices, however, the World's 4th largest oil company is cutting production in 2016.
So, despite oil being down 2.5%, we think $30 will hold and you can refer back to our UCO/USO bullish spread (see last week's post) and we're also liking Natural Gas (/NG Futures) again as we dip back to $2.00. We are not, however, playing the front-month March contract (/NGH6) but the /NGK6 May contract, which is trading a bit higher at $2.10 this morning.
Our logic on Natural Gas (and UNG is the ETF you can play at $7.50, which is our Trade of the Year for 2016 - beating IBM at the last minute!). In our Live Trading Webinar on 12/16, we had called a play on the April Natural Gas…
by phil - February 1st, 2016 8:08 am
Oh no, there goes China again!
This weekend it was more horrific PMI numbers out of China as January manufacturing activity contracted at its fastest pace in 3 years, suggesting the world's second largest economy is off to a weak start in 2016 (and adding to the case for near-term stimulus). The official Purchasing Managers' Index stood at 49.4 in January, compared with the previous month's reading of 49.7, below the 50-point mark that separates growth from contraction on a monthly basis. It is the weakest index reading since Aug, 2012 and below the median 49.6 forecast from a Reuters poll of leading economorons.
The PMI marks the sixth consecutive month of factory activity contraction, highlighting a manufacturing complex under severe pressure from falling prices and overcapacity in key sectors including steel and energy. "The electricity production remained sluggish and the crude steel output continued the weak trend in January, reflecting an ongoing deleveraging process in the industrial sectors," said Zhou Hao, an economist at Commerzbank. "In the meantime, China has started an aggressive capacity reduction in many sectors, which could add downward pressure on the bulk commodity prices over time."
China's slowdown has sent Korea's eports plunging at the fastest rate since Aug, 2009, down 18.5% in January and now the 13th month in a row of declining exports. Imports fell 20.1% – spreading the contagion further to other trading partners. South Korean data are viewed as a proxy for the global trade picturebecause of the Asian nation’s heavy dependence on imports of raw materials and exports of goods such as cars and phones. The Korean data also give a reading of the health of the Chinese economy because around a quarter of South Korea’s exports are sent to China.
All this bad news out of Asia (Japan's PMI also negative) has sent oil crashing back to Earth, back to $32.23 this morning after topping out at $34.50 on Friday. As I said to our Members in Friday's Live Chat Room (2:44):
I think oil is still up in hopes that the false rumor re. a production cut is going to be somehow supported over the weekend and,
by phil - January 29th, 2016 8:28 am
More free money?
No, the BOJ did not increase stimulus this morning. What they did is join Switzerland, Denmark and Sweden in the negative reserve club after dropping their rate from 0.1% to -0.1% this morning. Excess reserves are, simply, the bank reserves deposited in the Central Banks by their members in EXCESS of the reserve requirement set by the Central Banks. Usually, they are paid a deposit rate for these ultra-safe, ultra-liquid funds so what the negative reserve rates are TRYING to accomplish is to get the banks to do something else with the TRILLIONS of Dollars the Central Banks have handed out over the past 7 years.
Hopefully that something will be lending money to the bottom 99% (the Top 1% already get all they need), who can use it to refinance debt or actually build things – rather than the endless, non-productive, financial engineering that the Top 1% has been using all the free money for in the past 7 years – stagnating the Global Economy while increasing the wealth gap substantially.
The problem with Corporations (also legal citizens of the Top 1%, thanks to the Supreme Court) is that they use the low-interest debt to buy other companies and then downsize production so they can raise prices and increase margins. This lowers the amount of available jobs and raises costs to the consumers. They also use cheap money to buy back their own stock, which does nothing at all to grow the business (or the economy) but makes their earnings per share LOOK better, which tricks the sheeple to BUYBUYBUY at higher multiples (something we've been warning our Members away from all of last year).
All the money that's been created going to the Top 1% and put to no particular good use has led to the VELOCITY of that money dropping precipitously – down almost 50% from where we were before the crash. So the Fed and their fellow Central Banksters can print all the money they want but, if they don't get it into the hands of people who will actually spend it on things that GROW the economy – it's all a big waste of time.
by phil - January 28th, 2016 8:42 am
Curse you Jon Hilsenrath!
This guy (who writes for the WSJ) has WAY too much influence over the market due to his supposedly tight relationship with the Fed. At this point, it no longer matters what the Fed actually says – what matters is what Jon Hilsenrath tells you the Fed said. In this case, we had a nice uptick on reading the very doveish 2pm Fed minutes that lasted all the way until 2:03, when Hilsenrath opined in the article pictured here.
I had to use this screenshot (which, fortunately we captured during our Live Webinar) because, after I called him out for being totally WRONG in his snap interpretation of the Fed Statement (and we went long on the Dow Futures (/YM) into the sell-off) - his article has been DRASTICALLY altered. Now it reads:
Federal Reserve officials expressed renewed worry about financial-market turbulence and slow economic growth abroad, leaving doubts about whether the central bank will raise interest rates as early as March.
…the policy statement, released Wednesday after a two-day meeting, raised questions about whether the Fed would follow through with a rate move when it gathers again on March 15-16. Futures markets place just a 25% probability on rate increase by then.
Raised questions? I was the one raising the questions!!! If you want to hear me screaming about this live, you can check out our Webinar Replay later today (not ready yet) but, as far as investors who were not lucky enough to have me calling shenanigans on Hilsenrath and the Wall Street Journal – the damage was already done. The WSJ didn't even point out that the article was corrected – they just shoved their tail between their legs and tried to pretend they didn't make a mistake that cost the Dow 300 points.
Of course, the great thing about participating in one of our Live Webinars (see yesterday's post for your invite) is that we know how to trade this kind of market BS and what we did was take a long position on the Dow Futures (/YM), averaging into a position at 15,879 and exiting early this morning at…
by phil - January 27th, 2016 8:34 am
Waiting to cut out the deadwood
Waiting to clean up the city
Waiting to weed out the weaklings
Waiting for the final solution
To strengthen the strain
Waiting to follow the worms – Floyd
Now comes the fun part of the week!
I told you Monday's drop would be meaningless and we had a full reversal yesterday and now we're right back where we finished on Friday, which isn't really such a good place, barely holding that weak-bounce 1,900 line on the S&P but at least it is holding and our Futures plays from yesterday morning put us in fantastic shape for today as my morning note to our Members was:
Futures – I like TF on a cross over 1,000 with tight stops but not too excited about anything else.
Oh, sorry, NQ over 4,200 would work too or NKD over 16,900.
/TF is the Russell 2,000 Futures and they popped up to 1,015 which may not seem like much but they pay $100 per point, per contract so +$1,500 on those and this morning we went long at 1,005 (since we didn't think we'd get back to 1,000 pre-market) and we'll see how that goes but already we're up $350 per contract at 1,008.50 and we set a stop at 1,007.50 to lock in $250 and, once again, the Egg McMuffins are paid for!
The Nasdaq (/NQ) made it to 4,240 but that's a dull $400 per contract gain while the real show was the Nikkei (/NKD), which jumped to 17,200 for a lovely $1,500 per contract gain. All in a day's work at Philstockworld and today we will have a LIVE Trading Webinar at 1pm (Members only – join HERE) - right into the Fed Release at 2pm so we'll hopefully be able to make some intelligent trades to take advantage of whatever comes our way this afternoon.
by phil - January 26th, 2016 8:24 am
Shanghai fell 6.4% last night.
The worst part was the way they sold off into the close DESPITE ANOTHER $70 BILLION that China has pumped into the market through reverse-repo operations this week. The Shanghai is now down 900 points since Dec 22nd and that's just a touch shy of 25%, which is drastic by any account and now lower than the Aug 26th low of 2,927 (20% off) by a wide margin (5%) but still very much in-line with what our 5% Rule™ predicted for China's 2nd downturn. If we (and I think Wi is the Finance Minister) can turn China back around this week, back over 2,927 – all shall be, surprisingly, well.
All is well(ish) according to Siemens CEO, Joe Keaser, who told CNBC this morning that: "The real economy in China is a lot better than people are talking about right now. There is obviously some weakness in terms of real estate and the finance sector but as far as our business is concerned, we do see some decent growth in healthcare, which was very, very strong with double-digit growth in China."
We'll get a nice peek into the Chinese consumer market with Apple (AAPL) earnings this evening and we're playing AAPL to beat, but not too aggressively as we'll be much happier to get a discount if they disappoint. The big disappointment out of China this morning that sent their stocks plummeting was the realization that their Trade Data is fake, Fake, FAKE!!! and heavily exaggerated.
While this may shock retail investors – this is a story we've been covering at PSW since 2013 (and, more recently, see: October's "Monday Mandarin Meltdown – China’s Fake GDP Still Sucks!") so, we're not selling on this "news" just because the rest of the World is clueless as to what's really going on. Tuesday’s data from Hong Kong tallied imports in the territory from the mainland at HK$183.7 billion ($23.7 billion) in December while, on Jan 13th, the Beijing-based Customs General Administration announced December trade data showing shipments to Hong Kong had surged 10.8% to $46 billion – a 100% "exaggeration."