Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

TGIF – Market Ends Week on a Rough Note

Wheeee – this is fun!  

As you can see from JackDamn's index chart, the Russell Small Caps have now given up ALL of their gains for the year and, even a little bit lower and we won't be looking at a small correction anymore.  Generally, we like to "short the laggard" – or the index that has fallen the least but the Nasdaq is a strange animal and all of it's outperforming gains are due to Apple (AAPL) - and we think AAPL deserves to be at $160, so we don't see it as particularly overpriced compared to the Dow or S&P, though there are certain components in the Nasdaq (AMZN, NFLX, TSLA) that have ridiculous values and those may correct and drag the index down with them.  

As you are well aware, we've been discussing options hedges and futures shorts all month so I hope you enjoyed yesteray's dip as much as we did.  Our two key shorts in our portfolios are the Ultra-Short Russell ETF (TZA) and the Ultra-Short Nasdaq ETF (SQQQ) and the Nasdaq is 4.5% off the top and the Russell is 7% off.  By the way, we have the SQQQ hedges, not because we thought the Nasdaq would drop more but because our biggest long position is AAPL – so it gave us the best protection to lock in our gains.  

In fact, we just did a review of our Options Opportunity Portfolio, which is up an impressive 211% as of our two-year anniversary (8/8/15 was our start date with $100,000) and it is, by far, the best-performing portfolio in the Seeking Alpha Marketplace.  That portfolio has the following AAPL position that, if successful will, by itself, make us $180,000 by Jan 2019.  

Our net entry on the trade was a $5,600 credit, mostly in June and, though the short puts obligate us to buy 2,000 shares of AAPL for $130 ($260,000), which would use $130,000 of ordinary margin, AAPL is already far enough out of the money where the net margin requirement in the short puts is just $20,000 – so it's a non-issue in our now $311,000 portfolio.  

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    Options Opportunity Portfolio Update (OOP):  Well we're up $4,000 today so I guess we're still bearish.  Unfortunately we peaked out at $325,753 back on our July 18th review and now we're down to $311,063 (up 211%), which is down $14,690 for the month.  Unfortunately, our two new plays since then were LB and TEVA, both took big losses in the first round.  We'll be adding to both of those losers.

    For those who are new, we transitioned this portfolio to more of a long-term portfolio as our first few months (it's our 2-year anniversary, in fact!) made us realize most people were not able to follow active trading due to the platform restrictions at SA.  We've moved towards a hybrid portfolio that mirrors the style of PSW's Long-Term/Short-Term paired portfolios, which relies on long-term positions, short-term premium selling and hedging to create a steady income stream.  

    That's going very well, as we're up 211% in two years, so no reason to change things now, right.  It makes the portfolio less exciting but it's exciting to have money too – so we'll stick to the winning formula in year 3 ahead.  

    • CHL – We sell short puts mainly to generate a little cash (often to offset a bearish position) and also, as in this case, to put a placeholder down on a stock we'd really like to buy if it gets cheaper.  What's our buy signal?  When the short puts are losing lots of money!  Sadly, this one is up 59%, so it looks like we won't be getting to buy CHL cheaply this quarter.  
    • NLY – Another one we'd love to own if they get cheap.  In this case, it's our favorite REIT and, rather than buy the stock ($12.30) and then cover it with a call and hope it holds its value while waiting to collect a $1.20 dividend – we just sold the $12 puts for $2.75 (more than two years' worth of dividends) and our worst case is getting assigned the stock at net $9.25 (25% off).  That keeps $12,300 CASH!!! in our portfolio, which generates $24,600 of ordinary margin and the margin requirement

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My NPR hit on Amazon vs Walmart


My NPR hit on Amazon vs Walmart

Courtesy of 

Got a lot of feedback for a brief appearance I made on NPR this morning. If you missed it live, here’s the audio. Link to related article below!


Walmart vs. Amazon: Which will win the retail wars? (Marketplace)

Comment by emailmike

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    pat_swap / green coins-

    BDC put together a write-up on how to set up a crypto account and then buy green coins.  I found it incredibly helpful (no chance I would have been able to figure this out on my own!)-

Faltering Thursday – CEOs Quit Trump, Markets Start Noticing the Mess

Wow, that was a fun day!  

After bragging about how easy it would be to replace departing CEOs, Trump ended up disbanding what was left of his Business Council as we finally found a group of people in America with the backbone to stand up to the President.  From our point of view, we don't care what news brought the market down, as long as the market goes down and, once again, our index shorts were big winners.  In fact, we made almost $1,000 for our Members in just over an hour during our Live Trading Webinar alone (you're welcome!). 

Our 5:49am call to short the Futures was linked pre-market in yesterday morning's PSW Report and now would be a good time to review the calls after the fact, so we can get an idea of how our 5% Rule™ operates in the wild:

The Dow had a 400-point run (1.8%) to 22,050 so 80-points back is 21,970 and then all the way back to 21,890 but I'm only expecting a weak retrace for now.  

As you can see, we pretty much nailed 21,970 (weak retrace).  90-pont drop from 22,000 (our shorting line) was good for gains of $450 per contract.

/ES had a 30-point run to 2,470 and that's 6-points back to 2,463 and then 2,457 if it's so inclined to fill that gap.  

Again we have the weak retrace and a 10-point dop on the S&P Futures (/ES) is good for gains of $500/contract.  What we're looking for…
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How much longer will Maduro’s grip on power last? Look to the military


How much longer will Maduro's grip on power last? Look to the military

Courtesy of David Pion-Berlin, University of California, Riverside

If the Venezuelan military withdraws support for President Nicholás Maduro, his end may be near.

A large middle class has been thrust into poverty in Venezuela. Food and medicine are in short supply, and malnourishment is widespread. Security forces have violently beaten back security forces and jailed leading opposition figures.

Reigning over this disaster is Maduro, who was narrowly elected in March of 2013 following the death of leftist leader Hugo Chávez. Amid the stunning decline, many are asking, what will the military do?

My research on civil-military relations in Latin America and other regions finds that a military’s loyalty to a regime can waver when it is confronted with mass protests. If the military grants loyalty to a leader, it comes at a price. But if the armed forces withdraw their support by remaining in their barracks and refusing to silence the protests, the leader’s days are numbered.

Confronting the protesters

In Latin America, the former Soviet Republics and the Middle East, I have found that as the numbers of protesters swell, police often retreat because they are not equipped to contain mass demonstrations. At that point, when the armed forces choose to stay in their barracks rather than head to the streets to enforce order, political leaders quickly fall from power. This was true in every case.

For example, this occurred in Argentina in December 2001 when President Fernando de la Rúa presided over a financial collapse of epic proportions. Citizens could no longer withdraw money from their own checking and savings accounts, resulting in widespread rioting and looting. When the president asked his military to intervene to restore order, they refused. Immediately thereafter, De la Rúa was forced to flee for his life by helicopter from the rooftop of the presidential palace, as throngs of angry protesters descended.

Similar scenarios unfolded during the revolutionary uprisings in Georgia (2003) and Ukraine (2004), and more recently in Tunisia (2010) and Egypt (2011) during the Arab Spring. After the military in each of those countries made it known it…
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Just another tipping point, or a real one?


Courtesy of 

The hashtag #NothingMatters had become a sort of shorthand for “Oh my god, how is this actually happening” among normal people from both sides of the political spectrum over the last year. The outrages and insults to the norms of our democracy and our way of life, too numerous and widely known to list here, would be greeted with a semi-sarcastic #nothingmatters and then we’d move on to the next insane thing, and then the next.

But apparently, something matters.

You can’t expect members of the Fortune 500 and representatives of the labor unions to stick around when you equivocate in the aftermath of Nazis murdering someone. You can be an atrocious person and perhaps the worst leader this country has ever known, and you can get away with a whole lot of shit, but not Nazi sympathy.

Nice to know there’s still a line somewhere. I was beginning to think that there wasn’t. “He doesn’t really mean it, come on…” 

Over the last few days, members of the President’s “American Manufacturing Council” began to drop off and openly criticize the President’s outrageous response to the Charlottesville incident. One by one, they announced their resignations and told their constituents (employees, shareholders, customers) why. They had no choice, whether because of conscience or because of business pressures or some combination of both, it doesn’t matter. You cannot run a multi-national corporation with employees of every background and customers around the world if you’re tacitly supporting Nazi and KKK sympathizers.

By lunchtime today, the “Strategic Council” (the one with all the Wall Street people like Jamie Dimon, Steve Schwarzman and Larry Fink) had unanimously agreed to disband and liquidate. And then Trump came out and acted like it was his idea and claimed to be disbanding it himself. It probably saved him the humiliation of another two dozen public announcements about how inappropriate and disgusting his response was.

One thing we as Americans can count on, and I don’t mean this cynically, is that money talks and bullshit walks. As Puff Daddy used to admonish the aspiring rappers on his reality show – it’s all

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Tracing the sources of today’s Russian cyberthreat


Tracing the sources of today's Russian cyberthreat

Courtesy of Dorothy DenningNaval Postgraduate School

File 20170810 27649 a7n4re

Who’s inside the hoodie? BeeBright/

Beyond carrying all of our phone, text and internet communications, cyberspace is an active battleground, with cybercriminals, government agents and even military personnel probing weaknesses in corporate, national and even personal online defenses. Some of the most talented and dangerous cybercrooks and cyberwarriors come from Russia, which is a longtime meddler in other countries’ affairs.

Over decades, Russian operators have stolen terabytes of data, taken control of millions of computers and raked in billions of dollars. They’ve shut down electricity in Ukraine and meddled in elections in the U.S. and elsewhere. They’ve engaged in disinformation and disclosed pilfered information such as the emails stolen from Hillary Clinton’s campaign chairman, John Podesta, following successful spearphishing attacks.

Who are these operators, why are they so skilled and what are they up to?

Back to the 1980s

The Russian cyberthreat dates back to at least 1986 when Cliff Stoll, then a system administrator at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, linked a 75-cent accounting error to intrusions into the lab’s computers. The hacker was after military secrets, downloading documents with important keywords such as “nuclear.” A lengthy investigation, described in Stoll’s book “The Cuckoo’s Egg,” led to a German hacker who was selling the stolen data to what was then the Soviet Union.

By the late 1990s, Russian cyberespionage had grown to include the multi-year “Moonlight Maze” intrusions into U.S. military and other government computers, foretelling the massive espionage from Russia today.

The 1990s also saw the arrest of Vladimir Levin, a computer operator in St. Petersburg. Levin tried to steal more than US$10 million by hacking Citibank accounts, foreshadowing Russia’s prominence in cybercrime. And Russian hackers defaced U.S. websites during the Kosovo conflict, portending Russia’s extensive use of disruptive and damaging cyberattacks.

Conducting advanced attacks

In more recent years, Russia has been behind some of the most sophisticated cyberattacks on record. The 2015 cyberattack
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Comment by The Nattering Naybob

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    Phil – Your welcome.  I like Judge, Stanton, Votto, Harper, and a healthy Trout is a monster. Cabrera is on the back nine at 34. 

Trump’s threat to withdraw from NAFTA may hit a hurdle: The US Constitution


Trump's threat to withdraw from NAFTA may hit a hurdle: The US Constitution

Courtesy of Tim MeyerVanderbilt University

File 20170815 6110 1uokhee

The Constitution may burst Trump’s threat to withdraw from NAFTA. AP Photo/Mel Evans

Tim Meyer, Vanderbilt University

On Aug. 16, representatives of the U.S., Canada and Mexico formally begin renegotiating the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), an accord that has governed matters of trade and security on the continent for 23 years.

President Donald Trump has repeatedly threatened to withdraw the United States from NAFTA and similar trade agreements if other nations are unwilling to renegotiate to terms he likes.

Whether you agree with him or not, his threat to unilaterally back out of NAFTA and other trade deals on his hit list may be a hollow one for a simple reason: the U.S. Constitution.

Our country’s founding document places limits on a president’s ability to cease complying with the provisions of a U.S. trade agreement – absent congressional approval.

President Trump met with Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto at the G20 Summit in Hamburg in July. AP Photo/Evan Vucci

A perfect negotiating strategy

The U.S. recently released its objectives for renegotiating NAFTA. The threat to withdraw if those objectives are not met is an element of the U.S. negotiating strategy that deserves attention.

President Trump comes to the table after repeatedly declaring his intention to scrap NAFTA during the campaign and reportedly going as far as to prepare an executive order in April to begin withdrawal.

Despite the apparent change of heart, he insists that he stands prepared to terminate NAFTA if he is “unable to make a fair deal.”

Although NAFTA has been the main target of Trump’s displeasure, it’s not the only one.

The president said roughly the same thing about the U.S.-South Korea Free Trade Agreement (known as KORUS), declaring that “we are going to renegotiate that deal or…
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The Decline of Social Groups and the Erosion of the Social Order

By PeakProsperity. Originally published at ValueWalk.

In the conventional view, there are two kinds of revolutions: political and technological. Political revolutions may be peaceful or violent, and technological revolutions may transform civilizations gradually or rather abruptly—for example, revolutionary advances in the technology of warfare.

In this view, the engines of revolution are the state—government in all its layers and manifestations—and the corporate economy.

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Zero Hedge

Polish Minister Rages At Spanish Attacks: Europeans Must "Wake Up" To This "Clash Of Civilizations"

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Europe must "wake up," urges Poland initerior minister Mariusz Blaszczak, telling state TV that "we are dealing with a clash of civilazations," where Muslim enclaves form “support bases” for terrorists.

The official, a member of the ruling rightwing Law and Justice Party (PiS), said he asked his country’s security ser...

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Phil's Favorites

Problems Too Big and Too Many To Fix: Trump Will Be the Fall Guy

Courtesy of Mish.

The axe fell on Steve Bannon Friday.

Mid-day, mainstream media proclaimed stocks were up because of the firing. Stocks closed the day down. Apparently, stocks were both up and down due to Bannon.

Now Banon is Back on the Outside, back at Breitbart, and happy to be there.

Stephen K. Bannon has always been more comfortable when he was trying to tear down institutions — not work inside them.

With his return to Breitbart News, Mr. Bannon will be free to lead the kind of ferocious assault on the political establishment that he relishes, even if sometimes that means turning his wrath on the White House itself.

Hours after his o...

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Chart School

Gold steps formation is bullish

Courtesy of Read the Ticker.

Making a clear judgment on price trend that's is correct is critical, after all the most common advice from the large heads on Wallstreet is to follow the trend. This means your trend tools must provide the clear and correct answer, members are encouraged to consider RTT Steps as their preferred trend tool.

These chart examples should prove our point. RTT Steps is much better than moving averages, hands down!

Gold example

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Apple Inc example

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Insider Scoop

Things To Like, Things To Watch At The Gap

Courtesy of Benzinga.

Related GPS 20 Stocks Moving In Friday's Pre-Market Session A Peek Into The Markets: U.S. Stock Futures Edge Higher Ahead Of Consumer Sentiment Repor... more from Insider

Digital Currencies

Ukrainian Lawmakers Disclose $45 Million In Bitcoin Holdings

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

As Ukraine's crackdown on corruption continues, three lawmakers from Ukraine’s ruling party revealed this week that they own a combined $45 million in bitcoin, according to a report by RIA Novosti, a Russian foreign news service.

Their holdings came to light during mandatory financial disclosures by members of the Ukrainian parliament, part of an IMF-approved strategy to tamp down corruption in Ukraine. The country's democratic institutions, which were never very robust to begin with, have been further destabilized by...

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Swing trading portfolio - week of August 14th, 2017

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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Editing human embryos with CRISPR is moving ahead - now's the time to work out the ethics

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

Editing human embryos with CRISPR is moving ahead – now's the time to work out the ethics

Courtesy of Jessica BergCase Western Reserve University

There’s still a way to go from editing single-cell embryos to a full-term ‘designer baby.’ ZEISS Microscopy, CC BY-SA

The announcement by researchers in Portland, Oregon that they’ve successfully modified the genetic m...

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Members' Corner

Why we need to act on climate change now


Why we need to act on climate change now

Interview with Jan Dash PhD, by Ilene Carrie, Editor at Phil’s Stock World

Jan Dash PhD is a physicist, an expert at quantitative finance and risk management, and a consultant at Bloomberg LP. In his thought-provoking book, Quantitative Finance and Risk Management, A Physicist's Approach, Jan devotes a chapter to climate change and its long-term systemic risk. In this article, Ilene interviews Jan regarding his thoughts on climate change and the way it can affect our futu...

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Mapping The Market

The App Economy Will Be Worth $6 Trillion in Five Years

Courtesy of Jean-Luc

This would be excellent news for AAPL and GOOG to a lesser extent although not inconsequential:

The App Economy Will Be Worth $6 Trillion in Five Years 

In five years, the app economy will be worth $6.3 trillion, up from $1.3 trillion last year, according to a report released today by app measurement company App Annie. What explains the growth? More people are spending more time and -- crucially -- more money in apps. While on average people aren't downloading many more apps, App Annie expects global app usership to nearly double to 6.3 billion people in the next five years while the time spent in apps will more than double. And, it expects the...

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NewsWare: Watch Today's Webinar!


We have a great guest at today's webinar!

Bill Olsen from NewsWare will be giving us a fun and lively demonstration of the advantages that real-time news provides. NewsWare is a market intelligence tool for news. In today's data driven markets, it is truly beneficial to have a tool that delivers access to the professional sources where you can obtain the facts in real time.

Join our webinar, free, it's open to all. 

Just click here at 1 pm est and join in!

[For more information on NewsWare, click here. For a list of prices: NewsWar...

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Kimble Charting Solutions

Brazil; Waterfall in prices starting? Impact U.S.?

Courtesy of Chris Kimble.

Below looks at the Brazil ETF (EWZ) over the last decade. The rally over the past year has it facing a critical level, from a Power of the Pattern perspective.


EWZ is facing dual resistance at (1), while in a 9-year down trend of lower highs and lower lows. The counter trend rally over the past 17-months has it testing key falling resistance. Did the counter trend reflation rally just end at dual resistance???

If EWZ b...

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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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