by phil - April 9th, 2012 8:23 am
What a ride we're getting (see Bespoke Charts). We discussed the fun that led up to this drop on Friday, so no need to rehash it here. Over the weekend, Philstockworld reviewed "This Month in Fascism" and I put up a post outlining "Capitalism's End Game" where we had some nice additional discussion in that post's Member Chat so read that an you're all up to speed.
That brings us to what is happening now. There was little news this weekend other than inflation accelerating in China, with their CPI hitting 3.6% in March vs 3.3% expected but that number is BS anyway as food alone is up 7.5%. For the Quarter, the CPI was up 3.8% overall and China's target for the year is 4% so this effectively takes stimulus action off the table for now. The ONLY thing keeping CPI lower is the now-steady price of housing, which is down at 2% but that's still 2% higher than prices the Government has already decided the people can no longer afford.
China is clearly slowing down but STILL having inflation. The WSJ points out that China's iron-ore demand is down and other emerging-market economies also appear to be losing steam with India's growth down to 6.1% and Brazil down to 3% with Russia having almost no growth at all. So much for the BRICs… "Year-to-date returns have been quite deceptive. All that really happened in 2012 is a typically powerful bear-market bounce off 2011 lows," said Michael Shaoul, chairman of Marketfield Asset Management.
We've been hanging onto long-term short EDZ positions in anticipation of a sell-off in the emerging markets and, despite $25.6Bn of net inflows in Q1 (the most since 2006), EEM has gone nowhere since the end of January, which is funny, since only $1.7Bn flowed into the US stock market in Q1 yet our indexes are up 10% – but that's a different article!
Anyway, so EDZ is still at $12.79 and if we figure we get a 10% pullback in the Emerging Markets then EDZ pops 30% to $16.62 and you can buy the May $14/16 bull call spread for .40 with a 400% upside at $16 and we used to like to cover those with CHL but CHL has flown up to $54 and no longer cheap so I'm thinking FCX is a nice,…
by phil - November 24th, 2011 5:27 pm
What an ugly finish November is having!
We’ve been trying to get bullish with little success and, if we are not reversing tomorrow, I will be regretting the wasted time poking at bullish plays when we could have been going "wheeeee" on the slide.
I thought that blue line on Dave Fry’s chart was going to hold, it’s about 2.5% down from our Must Hold level for the S&P on the Big Chart (1,235) and that would have been a reasonable (and slight) overshoot of the 10% drop we were expecting so we played for the bounce but now we’ve blown our -5% line at 1,173 and our next support level is -10% at 1,112 – a very sad level to revisit if we do.
Technically, of course, we’re breaking down. Fundamentally, I’m not so sure. The fear is palpable as Europe looks terrible and clearly all these austerity measures are taking a toll on the Global economy but it’s simply NOT showing up in the data yet. PMI’s are dropping across the Globe but the Purchasing Manager’s index is a SENTIMENT indicator that reflects the OPINION of the buyers about business prospects.
As I have been pointing out (yes, there was a point) in my recent series of articles about market and media manipulation – there is a protracted campaign underway to push sentiment down – to chase retail buyers out of the markets.
Who is doing this? Perhaps it is the IBanks, who want to bottom out the market ahead of QE3, when we’ll be off to the races again. Perhaps it is the Fed and Treasury, who want to chase people into the $140Bn worth of bonds they have to sell each month. Perhaps it is the Republicans, who want to campaign against the worst possible economy next year to prove that Obama has blown his handling of the economy almost as bad as Bush did – so we may as well try one of their idiots again since it seems to make no difference. Don’t laugh – I have a button for Romney that says that…
Whatever and whoever is behind the negativity (and let’s not forget Germany, who are angling to take control of the EU and will be able to do so if things deteriorate further) – our job as investors is not to particularly care – but…
by Option Review - October 5th, 2010 4:16 pm
Today’s tickers: IPG, UPS, ATML, CBS, CHL, CAVM, ROST & WL
IPG - Interpublic Group Companies, Inc. – Long-term bullish trading in Interpublic Group LEAPs indicates one strategist is preparing for the price of the underlying stock to climb substantially higher by expiration day in January 2012. Shares of the advertising and marketing services firm rose 4.80% to $10.46 by 2:50 pm ET. The options strategist appears to have enacted a delta neutral transaction, buying 210,000 shares of the underlying stock at $10.40 each, spread against the sale of 5,000 calls at the January 2012 $12.5 strike for an average premium of $0.975 apiece on a 0.42 delta. The sale of the calls can be considered a financing mechanism as well as a potential exit strategy on the long position in shares. The investor could wind up having the shares called from him at $12.50 each in the event that at expiration IPG’s shares exceed $12.50. In this case, the trader would realize gains of 32.625% on the rally in shares from the reduced purchase price of $9.425 a share up to $12.50 a share. Interpublic’s overall reading of options implied volatility is down 3.4% at 40.65% one hour before the final bell. The marketing services provider announces its third-quarter results before the market opens on October 29, 2010.
UPS - United Parcel Service, Inc. – A sizeable near-term bullish transaction involving 23,000 call options and a large chunk of UPS shares caught our eye today. Shares of the world’s largest package delivery company, which announced Friday it plans to raise the non-contractual UPS Freight rate by 5.9% starting October 18, are currently up 3.20% to stand at $68.25 as of 2:30 pm ET. It looks like the investor responsible for the transaction established a covered call on the stock to position for the price of the underlying shares to continue higher ahead of October expiration. The trader purchased approximately 322,000 shares at $67.57 each and sold 23,000 calls at a premium of $0.19 apiece on…
by phil - February 14th, 2010 8:25 am
Happy Valentine’s Day!
Last Valentine’s Day was as Saturday, following a frightening Friday the 13th, where we had fallen through the 8,000 line on the Dow. I wrote a very interesting post that morning discussing how I came about my political views, which is good for new Members to check out. We also flipped short that day on SKF, too early at $130 but that ended well as we kept after them and it was our biggest bet by March 6th, which eventually returned over 1,000%. We also stopped shorting GOOG at $350 (it did keep going to $300 but the upside was nice too). I closed the morning post with:
For us, it’s all about the levels as we try to remain unbiased as investors, no matter how voraciously we defend our political views. Dow 7,800, S&P 820, Nas 1,460, NYSE 5,100, Russell 437 and SOX 203 all better continue to hold today but, even if they do, we’re nowhere near where we want to be and we’re going to take some bearish covers into the weekend – just in case. So whether you are a witch celebrating the horrors of the 13th or waiting for a rose from your true love the next day, remember to be careful out there – we are certainly still deep, deep in the woods!
That Tuesday (Monday was President’s day) we fell 300 points and another 300 points by the end of the week! That was a fitting way to mark the 80th anniversary of the St. Valentine’s Day Massacre when Al Capone’s "South Side" gang, dressed as cops, rousted a garage run by Bugs Moran’s "North Side" gang and had them stand against the wall and then executed all 7 men. They shot them 70 times with machine guns and made their escape by using the Capone men dressed as cops to "arrest" the other Capone men and drive them away from the scene in broad daylight. Now that’s what I call a good plan!
Here’s a great chart that summarizes our year to date. Someone else found this, I wish I knew how to use StockCharts this well, they have tons of good things in there:
It’s a bit worrying that XLU is doing so poorly – so much for diversification keeping you safe… It’s going to be worth rummaging through the utility companies looking for good dividend payers who are on sale. SO…