Long live the Debt! In case you are voting in the next election – here are 12 people to get rid of. Much as I may blame one party over another for this failure, they all deserve what’s coming to them for A) Pretending they were going to accomplish something and B) For not now getting up and making very strong statements denouncing the corruption in politics that make it impossible for Congress to do the Nation’s business anymore.
In case you happen to be a Fox News viewer, I will try to keep this VERY simple because, as it turns out, we now have definitive studies that prove Fox News MAKES YOU STUPID. Of course, it is possible that only stupid people watch Fox News but I know many people who think they are smart and watch Fox News so I have to blame Fox News here as do researchers at Farleigh Dickenson University who found "The results show us that there is something about watching Fox News that leads people to do worse on these questions than those who don’t watch any news at all." As I can tell you from raising my own children to be good citizens:
The biggest aid to answering correctly is The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, which leads to a 6-point decrease in identifying the protesters as Republicans, and a 12-point increase in the likelihood of giving the correct answer. "Jon Stewart has not spent a lot of time on some of these issues," said Cassino. "But the results show that when he does talk about something, his viewers pick up a lot more information than they would from other news sources."
Watching Fox News, by the way, led to an 18-point disadvantage (out of 53% of all respondents) in being able to answer questions like "Were Egyptians successful in overthrowing Hosni Mubarak" or "Has the Syrian uprising been successful" but that was a Fox viewer’s area of expertise compared to having a clue of what is going on in American politics other than "Obama sucks." Tied with Daily show viewers for best informed were NPR supporters but, sadly, only 21% of Americans get their news from NPR and only 18% from the Daily Show while 64% list Fox News as one of their frequent news sources.
In another study, World Public Opinion, a project managed by…
CRM – Salesforce.com, Inc. – A large-volume ratio call spread on the provider of customer relationship management services this afternoon implies one options investor expects CRM shares to rally significantly by August expiration. Salesforce.com’s shares increased as much as 1.83% today to reach a new 52-week high of $81.23 during the current session. According to a Reuters report this weekend, analysts at Deutsche Bank maintain their ‘buy’ rating on the stock and raised their share price target on CRM to $110 from $100. The optimistic options trader populating the stock this afternoon purchased 13,000 calls at the August $85 strike for a premium of $5.00 apiece, and sold 26,000 calls at the higher August $100 strike for $1.05 each. Net premium paid by the investor for the transaction amounts to $2.90 per contract. Maximum available profits of $12.10 per contract accumulate for the trader if shares of the underlying stock surge at least 23% from the new 52-week high of $81.23 to reach $100.00 by August expiration. The investor starts to make money as long as CRM’s shares trade above the effective breakeven point at $87.90 ahead of expiration day.
CPB – Campbell Soup Co. – Options traders anticipating a sharp increase in the price of Campbell Soup Co.’s shares by November expiration scooped up record numbers of call options on the global manufacturer and marketer of branded convenience food products today. CPB’s shares traded 0.25% higher in late afternoon trading to $35.45, which is just off their current 52-week high of $35.80 (attained back on December 2, 2009). Campbell-bulls purchased approximately 5,200 calls at the November $40 strike for an average premium of $0.55 per contract. Investors holding these contracts are prepared to profit should Campbell’s share price jump 14.4% from the current price to exceed the average breakeven point to the upside at $40.55. Investors exchanged roughly 5,925 option contracts on CPB during the trading session, which represents 56% of the total existing open interest on the stock of 10,567 lots.
VALE – Vale S.A. – Diverse bullish options strategies employed on Brazilian metals and mining company, Vale S.A., today indicates investors are expecting the price of the iron-ore maker’s shares to appreciate in the next few months. Vale’s shares rallied 1.20% at the start of the session to an intraday high – and new…
EEM – iShares MSCI Emerging Markets Index ETF – Shares of the emerging markets fund, which tracks the price and yield performance of the MSCI Emerging Markets Index, rallied 0.40% to touch a new 52-week high of $43.79 during the trading session. Options players have exchanged more than 315,000 option contracts on the fund with less than two hours remaining the trading day. A number of options players appear to be bracing for a potential pullback in the price per share of the emerging markets fund, while other investors may be positioning to benefit from greater options implied volatility on the fund during the next several months. One trader enacted a three-legged bearish options combination play in the May contract. The options investor sold 10,000 calls at the May $47 strike for a premium of $0.26 apiece in order to partially finance the purchase of a debit put spread. On the put side, the trader picked up 10,000 lots at the May $41 strike for a premium of $0.60 each, and sold the same number of puts at the lower May $37 strike for $0.16 apiece. The net cost of the bearish transaction amounts to $0.18 per contract. Therefore, the investor is prepared to accrue maximum potential profits of $3.82 per contract if shares of the EEM plummet 15.4% from the new high of $43.74 to reach the lower strike price of $37.00 by May expiration. Further along in the June contract, another options player appears to have invested in a long straddle on the fund. The trader responsible for the straddle purchased 10,000 calls at the June $44 strike for a premium of $1.75 apiece in combination with the purchase of 10,000 in-the-money puts at the same strike for a premium of $2.06 each. Net premium paid by the investor amounts to $3.81 per contract. The nature of the straddle strategy indicates the trader expects the price of the underlying fund to shift dramatically in either direction ahead of June expiration. The investor makes money if shares surge at least 9.3% to exceed the upper breakeven point at $47.81, or if shares decline at least 8.1% to breach the lower breakeven price of $40.19, by expiration day in June.
CNX – Consol Energy Inc. – Multi-fuel energy producer and energy services provider, Consol Energy, Inc., attracted…
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Several popular U.S. stock index's are at or near all time highs. Of late the Russell 2000 just broke above a 15-year resistance line. Now we will soon see if the Dow, NDX, NYSE and Wilshire 5000 follow suit.
"US retail as we have known it for hundreds of years is in sharp decline," warns Bloomberg Brief's Rich Yamarone, adding that "market participants should take note of the fallout in a sputtering US economy." The retail apocalypse, as we discussed here, is dominated by mass layoffs, weak traffic, and poor wage growth and, as Yamarone highlights, it's not hard to see why...
Imagine that you are speeding down one of those long and lonesome stretches of highway that seems to fall off the edge of the horizon. As the painted white lines become a blur, you notice a sign that says "Warning." You look ahead for what seems to be miles of endless highway, but see nothing. You assume the sign must be old therefore you disregard it, slipping back into complacency.
A few miles down the road you see another sign that reads "Warning: Danger Ahead." Yet, you see nothing in distance. Again, a few miles later you see another sign that reads "No, Really, There IS Danger Ahead." Still, it is clear for miles ahead as the road disappears over the next hill.
Today was the beginning of “spring break” for the market. At least it seemed that way with a very low trading volume of only 600M shares on the NYSE. Either the college crowd does more trading than we imagined or parents are taking the week off as well.
The market barely woke up for the session with the S&P 500 down 0.05% and the NASDAQ down 0.03%. However, the DJI must have gotten extra sleep this weekend as it was up 0.21%. Small caps took a bigger hit with the Russell 2000 dropping nearly 0.50% percent. There was nothing major in the news other than a disappointing trading figure from China. Indeed, the whole week will only include a meager four major economic reports with Wholesale Inventories tomorrow, Retail Sales and Jobless Claims on Thursday, and Producer Price In...
The dramatic moves in fuel cell related stocks continues this week, with shares in Plug Power (Ticker: PLUG), FuelCell Energy (Ticker: FCEL) and Ballard Power Systems (Ticker: BLDP) beginning the trading week with explosive gains ahead of FuelCell Energy’s first-quarter earnings report after the closing bell, and following on the heels of a large order from Walmart for Plug Power, which the company confirmed in a press release on February 26th.
Shares in PLUG rose as much as 38% to touch $11.41 this afternoon, marking a near 150% move to the upside in the price of the underlying since Monday morning of last week when the stock opened at $4.60....
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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.
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Ladies and Gentlemen, hobos and tramps,
Cross-eyed mosquitoes, and Bow-legged ants,
I come before you, To stand behind you,
To tell you something, I know nothing about.
And so the circus begins in Union Square, San Francisco for this weeks JP Morgan Healthcare Conference. Will the momentum from 2013, which carried the S&P Spider Biotech ETF to all time highs, carry on in 2014? The Biotech ETF beat the S&P by better than 3 points.
As I noted in my previous post, Biotechs Galore - IPOs and More, biotechs were rushing to IPOs so that venture capitalists could unwind their holdings (funds are usually 5-7 years), as well as take advantage of the opportune moment...
Welcome to the fouth update of the IRA Virtual Portfolio. First I am going to summarize the current state of the Portfolio then I will get into all the activity we had during September expiration.
Profit and Loss – Net of closed positions the portfolio is up a total of $769
Market Commentary – Last expiration I said, "I would like to put a total of $20,000 to work by the end of SEP expiration. If the VIX pops up to around 20 I plan to put about $50,000 total to work." The market didn't quite reach the goal but I did manage to deploy $15,000 of buying power. I still feel the market is too high and expect a correction during October. If the vix pops up to around 20 I still plan to put about $50,000 to work. If a correction doesn't happen I still plan to have a total of $25,000 in buying power put to work by October expiration. Now on to the act...
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