Oh anti-trust, anti-trust, wherefore art thou anti-trust? Don’t get me wrong, I love T as an investment, we just made a play on them last week with their big, fat, 6% dividend. Now they are using debt to finance a $39Bn purchase of DT’s T-Mobile division as the German-based company is sick and tired of getting paid in worthless dollars, which add nothing to their Euro-based earnings. Although one may think regulators would actually wake up and say "Huh?" to this deal – AT&T was confident enough to put up a $3Bn breakup fee and you don’t do something like that unless you’ve already spent $300M buying all the votes you need ahead of time.
"AT&T anticipates regulators will require it to divest wireless spectrum and subscribers as a condition for approval," said a person with knowledge of the situation. These things are all worked out long before they are announced but let’s hear it from the little guy anyway: "The combination of the second-largest wireless carrier with the fourth-largest is ‘unthinkable’,” Gigi Sohn, president of Public Knowledge, a Washington-based advocacy group, said in a statement. “We know the results of arrangements like this — higher prices, fewer choices, less innovation.” Isn’t he cute?
In addition to surpassing Verizon Wireless, AT&T could leave Sprint Nextel Corp. (S) as a far weaker No. 3 player in the industry, said Rebecca Arbogast, an analyst for Stifel Nicolaus & Co. in Washington. “AT&T was broken up and now it’s back with a vengeance,” said Bert Foer, president of the American Antitrust Institute, a Washington-based non-profit researcher that challenges what it sees as abuses of concentrated economic power. “We have to decide if we’re happy with the idea of going back to monopolistic treatment of the telecom industry. AT&T has come back to monopolistic power just like the Terminator.”
Is T calling a bottom to the dollar? Probably. You don’t spend $39Bn to buy a 40% market share in a country with declining revenues. T is also calling a bottom to lending rates and probably making a bet on inflation as well – all in all, pretty much exactly what we’re playing the market for so, from a T shareholder perspective – I love this acquisition. Nothing makes money like a monopoly (just ask Carlos Slim) and, as Steve Colbert illustrates above, AT&T has…
The Telegraph reported over the weekend that Gaddafi apparently made good on his threats to trigger a civil war, using irregular forces largely composed of hired mercenaries to launch a counterattack against protesters. “Anywhere we go there is danger,” said one woman, a 28-year-old mother of four who asked not to be named. “All we want is food and fresh water for our children but it is impossible to find. Security is the only concern of the authorities.”
An accurate report of the death toll is impossible to obtain at this time, but on Wednesday, Italy’s Foreign Minister, Franco Frattini said, “We believe that the estimates of about 1,000 are credible.” The situation in Libya has deteriorated since then. Multiple stories coming in from all over the country have cited dozens to hundreds of casualties in each city. It appears that Libya has slipped into the abyss of complete social breakdown and civil war.
A frame grab from Libyan state television broadcast on February 24, 2011 shows burnt cars in Tripoli, Libya.
AFP / Getty Images
When Rahma started her conversation over the phone, she said the shooting outside her home, in the streets of Tripoli, had calmed. It had been a terrible Friday. "After prayers, around 6,000 people gathered to denounce the regime, and soon after that, soldiers opened fire and killed two people," said the 21-year old woman, an employee for an oil company. But, 20 minutes after we began talking, she suddenly says, "I’m hearing shots again — a lot of them now. It’s getting worse" The terrible day was not yet over.
As more and more cities joined the ranks of "Free Libya," Tripoli is increasingly the theater for what looks to be Muammar Gaddafi’s last stand. Almost on cue, anti-regime forces, reportedly bearing arms taken from arsenals and swelled by the ranks of defecting soldiers, are bringing the battle to the capital from the so-called liberated zones. And for their part, thousands of residents of the capital took to the streets today, following Friday prayers, in a procession that kept on growing in size as it headed for Tripoli’s central plaza, Green Square. The regime’s troops responded by opening fire.
Rahma tells TIME she was out among the crowds earlier on Friday, but had been inside at home after hearing from family members elsewhere in the city that troops had shot unarmed marchers. At mid-afternoon, people she knew at the march told her that their numbers had grown to around 10,000 people. "The nearer to Green Square they get, the more people come out to join them," she says. "The soldiers are shooting more to reverse that, but it isn’t working. The soldiers may shoot people, but more citizens will come to replace them."
Like most other Libyans, Rahma has relied on cell phone communication to get updates on events, though not all information is easy to vet. "It’s very difficult to confirm everything you hear, and there are…
The one country landlocked between Tunisia and Egypt has so far been oddly silent. Not so much any more. Al Jazeera reports that the Libyan government has imposed a state of emergency for "fear of demonstrations and rallies" comparable to those in Tunisia and Egypt. And ranked 17 in the world for oil production (and 9th in proven reserves), this is one that crude HFT algos may want to keep an eye on.
Libyan sources familiar with the island revealed that a state of alert security prevail in the east of the Libyan cities, confirmed that elements of the police and support central and distributed to all government buildings.
The sources said that the Libyan government imposed a state of emergency and security alert since the outbreak of the revolution, Tunisia, for fear of demonstrations and rallies similar in Libyan cities.
The sources of the existence of orders to stop any gathering, whether in government or outside.
Under these instructions – Sources confirm – The Libyan government later abolished the league matches of Libyan Football Association which was to be organized during the month.
In conjunction with the ongoing events in neighboring Egypt, the forces imposed from the central support and the police since yesterday evening checkpoints in several major regions in both the white and Benghazi and Derna and Tobruk.
These enhancements come at a time when Libya is following with interest the Libyan street events taking place in Egypt over the satellite news channels deployed in all the cafes and shops in cities of Libya.
He said the Libyans before the popular revolution that swept cities in Tunisia and has succeeded in toppling President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali, after 23 years of rule.
It is feared the Libyan regime of infection along the Tunisian and Egyptian into Libya, especially in light of similar conditions and problems such as poor living conditions and the absence of freedoms
It May be time for Obama to explain to Putin the whole thing about "costs" and "red lines" one more time, maybe over a two hour phone call this time so the former KGB spy finally gets it, because while Russia has been seemingly confused for the past two weeks, Moscow just successfully annexed Crimea, without spilling a drop of blood. Which is what Ukraine essentially just confirmed after its acting president, who attained his position after a violent coup and remains unrecognized by Russia, told AFP in an exclusive interview saying Ukraine will not attempt a military move to prevent the southern Crimean peninsula's breakaway in order not to expose its eastern border.
Like yesterday, there was little economic news to influence the market. The S&P 500 opened fractionally higher, dipped briefly into the red and hit its 0.28% intraday high shortly before 11 AM. The index then sold off in a couple of waves to its -0.71% intraday low shortly after 3 PM. It trimmed its decline by the close to finish down 0.51, which puts it 0.55% below its record high on Friday. Tomorrow is another day of no significant US economic news, although the Eurozone's Industrial Production will be announced before the US markets open.
The yield on the 10-year note closed at 2.77%, down 2 bps from yesterday's close. The interim high was 3.04% at the end of 2013.
Vincent “Vinnie” Viola, the founder of Virtu Financial Inc, is High Frequency Trading's (HFT) first billionaire. He has an impressive track record of just “one losing trading day” during a 1,238 trading-day period.
How does he do it? The same way other High-Frequency do it: front running trades and scalping countless billions and billions of fractions-of-pennies in the process.
Before discussing the first HFT billionaire, let's post some background for those who are not familiar with the process.
What Is HFT?
Wikipedia reports ... High-frequency trading (HFT) is a type of algorithmic trading, specifically the use of sophisticated technological tools and computer algorithms to rapidly trade securities. HFT...
Shares in McDonald’s are up the most in the Dow Jones Industrial Average today, rising nearly 4.0% to $98.92 and the highest level since November 26th during the first hour of the session. The rally in shares of the world’s largest restaurant chain today is more than making up for yesterday’s dip in the price of the underlying on the heels of a larger than expected dip in February same store sales. Options traders hungry for continued gains in the stock in the very near term appear to be snapping up weekly options across several striking prices today.
The most traded weekly options by volume are the 14 Mar ’14 $97 strike...
DAILY PRICE REPORT
Today’s AM fix was USD 1,348.00, EUR 973.57 and GBP 810.44 per ounce.
Yesterday’s AM fix was USD 1,334.25, EUR 961.55 and GBP 800.87 per ounce.
Gold rose $0.7 or 0.05% yesterday, to $1,339.90/oz. Silver dropped $0.08 or 0.38% to $20.81/oz.
Gold in US Dollars - 1 Year (Bloomberg)
Gold rose in all currencies again today and headed towards a four month high in dollar terms as the standoff between Russia and Ukraine led to demand for gold as a haven. Silver surged 1.4%, platinum added 0.3% to $1,481.60/oz and pal...
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...
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.
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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...
Note: The material presented in this commentary is provided for
informational purposes only and is based upon information that is
considered to be reliable. However, neither MaddJack Enterprises, LLC
d/b/a PhilStockWorld (PSW) nor its affiliates
warrant its completeness, accuracy or adequacy and it should not be relied upon as such. Neither PSW nor its affiliates are responsible for any errors or omissions or for results obtained from the use of this information. Past performance, including the tracking of virtual trades and portfolios for educational purposes, is not necessarily indicative of future results. Neither Phil, Optrader, or anyone related to PSW is a registered financial adviser and they may hold positions in the stocks mentioned, which may change at any time without notice. Do not buy or sell based on anything that is written here, the risk of loss in trading is great.
This material is not intended as an offer or solicitation for the purchase or sale of any security or other financial instrument. Securities or other financial instruments mentioned in this material are not suitable for all investors. Any opinions expressed herein are given in good faith, are subject to change without notice, and are only intended at the moment of their issue as conditions quickly change. The information contained herein does not constitute advice on the tax consequences of making any particular investment decision. This material does not take into account your particular investment objectives, financial situations or needs and is not intended as a recommendation to you of any particular securities, financial instruments or strategies. Before investing, you should consider whether it is suitable for your particular circumstances and, as necessary, seek professional advice.