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Posts Tagged ‘Plunge Protection Team’

The Fed and “Plunge Protection Team”: Are They Manipulating Stocks?

The Fed and "Plunge Protection Team": Are They Manipulating Stocks? 
Rumors are, the U.S. government "is propping up the stock market." 

By Elliott Wave International

You will find many intriguing Q&As at EWI’s Message Board. We offer it as a free way for our Club EWI members and subscribers to interact with EWI and the Socionomics Institute’s experts. We strive to answer every Message Board reader, and publicly post the best Q&As. 

By far, the most frequent question we’ve been asked recently is:

"What is your take on the persistent internet chatter that the Federal Reserve is holding up the stock market via QE2, POMO, etc.? How can stocks ever decline again if the Fed is in control?"

We have several active Message Board posts that touch on "market manipulation." But here is an eye-opening chart that will help shed more light on this issue.

EWI President Robert Prechter published this chart in his October 2008 Elliott Wave Theorist. Review this chart carefully. For too many investors, the crash of 2007-2009 is becoming a hazy memory. And almost no one in the mainstream financial media talks about the utter panic in the markets in September-October 2008, the worst part of the crash.

If you think back to that time, you may remember that the Federal Reserve and U.S. government took many aggressive steps to help stop the collapse. Every time they would announce a new intervention, the market would cheer. Result? Prechter’s chart gives an unequivocal answer:

Buying on Bullish News in a Bear Market

[+] CLICK TO ENLARGE

As you can see, announcements of bailouts, unlimited credit, bans on short sales, etc., were powerless against the biggest stock market collapse in 76 years. The DJIA kept sliding. It didn’t stop until March 6, 2009 — after it had slipped below 6,500.

So: Is the Fed and the "Plunge Protection Team" engaged in market manipulation? You can browse EWI’s Message Board for some answers, but one thing is clear: When stocks were crashing two years ago, few dared to suggest that the Fed was in the saddle. Bob Prechter puts it best:

"When markets go up, the Fed seems to be in control; when they go down, it seems out of control. But the control aspect is an illusion."

Get the 33-page Market Myths Exposed eBook for
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The Fed and “Plunge Protection Team”: Are They Manipulating Stocks?

The Fed and "Plunge Protection Team": Are They Manipulating Stocks? 
Rumors are, the U.S. government "is propping up the stock market." 

By Elliott Wave International

You will find many intriguing Q&As at EWI’s Message Board. We offer it as a free way for our Club EWI members and subscribers to interact with EWI and the Socionomics Institute’s experts. We strive to answer every Message Board reader, and publicly post the best Q&As. 

By far, the most frequent question we’ve been asked recently is:

"What is your take on the persistent internet chatter that the Federal Reserve is holding up the stock market via QE2, POMO, etc.? How can stocks ever decline again if the Fed is in control?"

We have several active Message Board posts that touch on "market manipulation." But here is an eye-opening chart that will help shed more light on this issue.

EWI President Robert Prechter published this chart in his October 2008 Elliott Wave Theorist. Review this chart carefully. For too many investors, the crash of 2007-2009 is becoming a hazy memory. And almost no one in the mainstream financial media talks about the utter panic in the markets in September-October 2008, the worst part of the crash.

If you think back to that time, you may remember that the Federal Reserve and U.S. government took many aggressive steps to help stop the collapse. Every time they would announce a new intervention, the market would cheer. Result? Prechter’s chart gives an unequivocal answer:

Buying on Bullish News in a Bear Market

[+] CLICK TO ENLARGE

As you can see, announcements of bailouts, unlimited credit, bans on short sales, etc., were powerless against the biggest stock market collapse in 76 years. The DJIA kept sliding. It didn’t stop until March 6, 2009 — after it had slipped below 6,500.

So: Is the Fed and the "Plunge Protection Team" engaged in market manipulation? You can browse EWI’s Message Board for some answers, but one thing is clear: When stocks were crashing two years ago, few dared to suggest that the Fed was in the saddle. Bob Prechter puts it best:

"When markets go up, the Fed seems to be in control; when they go down, it seems out of control. But the control aspect is an illusion."

Get the 33-page Market Myths Exposed eBook
continue reading


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Meet The Latest Member Of The Plunge Protection Team: The European Central Bank

Courtesy of Tyler Durden

The long-debated topic of whether the ECB intervenes on behalf of the euro can now be put to rest. 120 pip move in a minute is not a short cover. It is, and always has been, forced central bank intervention. Bernanke is so happy Trichet is doing his work for him for the time being. Be very wary of buying stocks on this intervention, as Central Bank involvement now at best leads to a 12 hour temporary "fix" to the market that Bernanke et al want to sustain.

 


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DOES THE GOVERNMENT MANIPULATE STOCK PRICES?

Excellent article by Pragcap – I highly recommend reading. – Ilene 

DOES THE GOVERNMENT MANIPULATE STOCK PRICES?

Courtesy of The Pragmatic Capitalist

Hand in Rubber Glove

There has been a lot of chatter over the last year about the government’s involvement in the equity markets. Yesterday’s market action was certainly odd.  Several large institutions were active buyers of enormous blocks of the S&P on no news.  The volume shot through the roof from out of nowhere.  It was not an unusual occurrence.  We have seen it repeatedly over the course of the last 12 months (see here for more).  Of course, this whole discussion has a very conspiratorial aspect to it, but I think it’s less nefarious than many presume (depending on your definition of nefarious when it come to pseudo-government intervention in markets).

The usual argument with regards to government intervention in the equity markets is pretty simple.  The government, or the “President’s Working Group” (aka, the Plunge Protection Team) purchases securities in big blocks and jams prices higher.  Jamming, gunning, carpet bombing (whatever you want to call it) is quite simple.  In any market there are down times in terms of volume.  If you have the firepower (the capital) and the desire you can knock out just about every asking price on the board.  Have a look at just about any Russell 2,000 stock at around noon as the volume slows to a drizzle and ask yourself what you could do with $10,000,000?  Of course, the same goes for the downside.  You can hit the bids and literally knock them off the board in an illiquid market (exactly what we saw in Fall of 2008 with fund redemptions).

Anyone who has ever traded in size has seen this in action.  It’s like taking a machine gun to a medieval battle or sending the U.S. Army to Baghdad (not that anyone would ever do such a thing).  The point is, you can slice through prices like a hot knife through butter, create a certain sentiment in the market that actually generates attention (liquidity) and then get out on the other side of the trade by selling (or covering) to the crowd you’ve attracted.  Of course, if you’re someone who has a longer time horizon than a few minutes…
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Is the Fed Juicing the Stock Market?

Is the Fed Juicing the Stock Market?

Courtesy of Mike Whitney writing at Global Research

Purple stack of money with stock quotes behind

Is the Fed manipulating the stock market?  TrimTabs CEO Charles Biderman seems to think so, and he makes a strong case for his theory in an article at zerohedge.com.

Biderman focuses his attention on the mystery surrounding the stock market’s 9-month rally and asks, "Where is the money coming from?"  After all, the market cap has increased by more than $6 trillion since March 9. That amount of money should be fairly easy to trace; right?

Wrong.

Biderman: "The most positive economic development in 2009 was the stock market rally. (But) We cannot identify the source of the new money that pushed stock prices up so far so fast.  For the most part, the money did not from the traditional players that provided money in the past."

Huh?  So, this vast infusion of liquidity--which helped the banks to avoid painful deleveraging--did not come from the usual suspects?

That’s right. According to Biderman, the money did not come from (a) companies ("which were a huge net seller") (b) retail investor funds,  (c) retail investors, (d) foreign investors, or (e) pension funds.

What about the hedge funds?

Biderman:  "We have no way to track in real time what hedge funds do, and they may well have shifted some assets into U.S. equities.  But we doubt their buying power was enormous because they posted an outflow of $12 billion from April through November."

Okay; so we’re back to Square One. Where did the money come from?

Biderman again:  "As far as we know, it is not illegal for the Federal Reserve or the U.S. Treasury to buy S&P 500 futures.  Moreover, several officials have suggested the government should support stock prices.  For example, former Fed board member Robert Heller opined in the Wall Street Journal in 1989, “Instead of flooding the entire economy with liquidity, and thereby increasing the danger of inflation, the Fed could support the stock market directly by buying market averages in the futures market, thereby stabilizing the market as a whole.”  In a Financial Times article in 2002, an unidentified Fed official was quoted as acknowledging that policymakers had considered buying U.S. equities directly, not just futures.  The official mentioned that the Fed could “theoretically buy anything to pump money into the system.”

Biderman…
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Manipulation: How Markets Really Work

Click here to sign up for a free subscription to the PSW Report.  It’s easy!  – Ilene

Don’t miss reading this enlightening article. "Thank yous" to author Stephen Lendman ("we need a mass public awakening determined to change a very ugly system"), and Tyler Durden for finding.

Manipulation: How Markets Really Work

By Stephen Lendman, posted at Steve Lendman’s Blog and at the Baltimore Chronicle

Wall Street’s mantra is that markets move randomly and reflect the collective wisdom of investors. The truth is quite opposite. The government’s visible hand and insiders control markets and manipulate them up or down for profit – all of them, including stocks, bonds, commodities and currencies.

It’s financial fraud or what former high-level Wall Street insider and former Assistant HUD Secretary Catherine Austin Fitts calls "pump and dump," defined as "artificially inflating the price of a stock or other security through promotion, in order to sell at the inflated price," then profit more on the downside by short-selling. "This practice is illegal under securities law, yet it is particularly common," and in today’s volatile markets likely ongoing daily.

Why? Because the profits are enormous, in good and bad times, and when carried to extremes like now, Fitts calls it "pump(ing) and dump(ing) of the entire American economy," duping the public, fleecing trillions from them, and it’s more than just "a process designed to wipe out the middle class. This is genocide (by other means) – a much more subtle and lethal version than ever before perpetrated by the scoundrels of our history texts."

Why? Because the profits are enormous, in good and bad times, and when carried to extremes like now, Fitts calls it "pump(ing) and dump(ing) of the entire American economy," duping the public, fleecing trillions from them, and it’s more than just "a process designed to wipe out the middle class. This is genocide (by other means) – a much more subtle and lethal version than ever before perpetrated by the scoundrels of our history texts."

Fitts explains that much more than market manipulation goes on. She describes a "financial coup d’etat, including fraudulent housing (and other bubbles), pump and dump schemes, naked short selling, precious metals price suppression, and active intervention in the markets by the government and central bank" along with insiders. It’s a government-business partnership for enormous profits through "legislation, contracts, regulation (or lack…
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Daniel Shaffer Notices the “Invisible Hand” aka Plunge Protection Team

 

Daniel Shaffer Notices the "Invisible Hand" aka Plunge Protection Team

I am glad I am not the only one who notices these things…. I am only speaking as someone who has watched the market since mid 90s and have never seen the behavior I see now. Whenever a key technical average is threatened a magical flood of futures buying comes in. Almost every morning the past 10 weeks pre market futures are green (apparently there is not enough time to buy stocks between 9:30 AM and 4:00 PM). The last 30 minutes has magical reversals – we saw it just last Thursday at a key moving average. [May 21: Bookkeeping - Covering Index Shorts Around 3:30 - 3:45 PM]

There can only be one entity who has the buying power to do this… and with Goldman Sachs as the 4th arm of government you can use them behind closed doors. But I am sure we’ll never know the truth… and I hate to sound like a grassy knoll type but the market just does not act like it used to if you really watch closely. The S&P now regularly jumps in 4-5 point increments in a matter of 60-120 seconds late in the day. In my humble opinion the government knows so many quant and program trades now are tied to the indexes that it is easy to manipulate this market… you lead, they will follow automatically (by their programming). So for a relatively low cost you can move things where they "should be", and the momentum performance chasing computers will support your case. And Goldman Sachs can pile up trading wins since somewhere in their bowels, in the cigar smoke… cheers of victory cry out. From late April via ZeroHedge

Clearly in a ‘free market’ system it would look embarrassing for this type of behavior to be out in the open. But heck Japan was tossing around


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Zero Hedge

Proof Positive That the "Recovery" is a Lie and the Fed Is Only Interested in the TBTFs

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Submitted by Phoenix Capital Research.

By basing the whole “recovery” argument on fraudulent data, the Fed and Federal Government have backed themselves into a corner.

After all, anyone with a functioning brain knows that the unemployment data, and, GDP growth data are massaged at best and totally bogus at worst. By using these data points as bricks to build the argument that somehow spending $4 trillion in newly printed money (and issuing $11 trillion in new debt) was needed only reinforces one of two things:

1)   None of the people in charge of steering the economy have a clue what they’re doing …

 

Or...



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Promotions

Watch the Phil Davis Special on Money Talk on BNN TV!

Kim Parlee interviews Phil on Money Talk. Be sure to watch the replays if you missed the show live on Wednesday night (it was recorded on Monday). As usual, Phil provides an excellent program packed with macro analysis, important lessons and trading ideas. ~ Ilene

 

The replay is now available on BNN's website. For the three part series, click on the links below. 

Part 1 is here (discussing the macro outlook for the markets) Part 2 is here. (discussing our main trading strategies) Part 3 is here. (reviewing our pick of th...

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Phil's Favorites

Patriot Act Vote Coming Up: Google joins Apple, Others Requesting Spying Controls

Courtesy of Mish.

The Patriot act expires in June, and anyone in their right mind would wish the entire concept to go away entirely. NSA Spying has a 100% perfect track record of failure.

Sadly, the answer to the question Would NSA Data Surveillance End With Patriot Act? is a resounding "No".
The National Security Agency would lose its legal justification for collecting data on Americans' phone and email activity if Congress does not reauthorize the Patriot Act by June 1, but privacy advocates are skeptical about whether that would mean the end of the controversial surveillance program.

President Barack Obama has called on Congress to pass a bill that would end the bulk surveillance program while keeping certain spying powers intact for national...



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All About Trends

Mid-Day Update

Reminder: David 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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Insider Scoop

Raymond James Downgrades Power Integrations To Market Perform

Courtesy of Benzinga.

Related POWI Benzinga's Top Downgrades Benzinga's Volume Movers

Analysts at Raymond James downgraded Power Integrations Inc. (NASDAQ: POWI) from Outperform to Market Perform and removed the price target of $57.00.

Power Integrations shares have dropped 18.42% over the past 52 weeks, while the S&P 500 index has surged 10.69% in the same period.

Power Integrations' shares fell 1.51% to $51.65 in pre-market trading.

Latest Ratings for POWI DateFirmActionFrom...

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Chart School

S&P 500 Snapshot: Selloff Ends with a Modest Gain

Courtesy of Doug Short.

Friday was a mixed bag of economic data. Hopes for an upward revision to Third Estimate of Q4 GDP were disappointed when the BEA left the annualized rate at 2.2%. The final Michigan Consumer Sentiment for March was an improvement on the preliminary reading, but it was below the February final and well off the January 11-year high. The S&P 500 spent the day in a narrow range, ending with a modest 0.24% gain, which snapped a four-day selloff. The index was down 2.33% for the week, its second worst weekly performance of 2015 (the worst being the -2.77% plunge in late January).

The yield on the 10-year Note fell 7 bps to 1.95%.

Here ...



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Sabrient

Sector Detector: Bulls retake the wheel, with a little help from their friends at the Fed

Reminder: Sabrient is available to chat with Members, comments are found below each post.

Courtesy of Scott Martindale at Sabrient Systems

Well, it didn’t take long for the bulls to jump on their buying opportunity, with a little help from the bulls’ friend in the Fed. In fact, despite huge daily swings in the market averages driven by daily news regarding timing of interest rate hikes, the strength in the dollar, and oil prices, trading actually has been quite rational, honoring technical formations and support levels and dutifully selling overbought conditions and buying when oversold. Yes, the tried and true investing clichés continue to work -- “Don’t fight the Fed,” and “The trend is your friend.”

In this weekly update, I give my view of the cur...



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OpTrader

Swing trading portfolio - week of March, 23rd, 2015

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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Digital Currencies

Bitcoin vs. Uber: Bitcoin Lovers Respond to Mish

Courtesy of Mish.

I recently commented that it would not surprise me if bitcoin plunged to $1.00. That was not a prediction, it was a comment.

Still, I still feel a collapse in bitcoin is likely.

For discussion, please see Cash Dinosaur: France Limits Cash Transactions to €1,000, Puts Restrictions on Gold; Bitcoin End Coming?

In response, reader Creighton writes ...

Hello Mish

While I'm not going to argue the point about the possibility that Bitcoin drops to $1, or less, (that could happen yet, but not for the reasons you propose) I felt it necessary to point out something you seem to have overlooked.

While it's likely that the US government watching Bitco...



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Market Shadows

Kimble Charts: South Korea's EWY

Kimble Charts: South Korea's EWY

By Ilene 

Chris Kimble likes the iShares MSCI South Korea Capped (EWY), but only if it breaks out of a pennant pattern. This South Korean equities ETF has underperformed the S&P 500 by 60% since 2011.

You're probably familiar with its largest holding, Samsung Electronics Co Ltd, and at least several other represented companies such as Hyundai Motor Co and Kia Motors Corp.

...



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Option Review

Cypress Semi Draws Bullish Option Plays

Bullish trades abound in Cypress Semiconductor options today, most notably a massive bull call spread initiated in the July expiry contracts. One strategist appears to have purchased 30,000 of the Jul 16.0 strike calls at a premium of $0.89 each and sold the same number of Jul 19.0 strike calls at a premium of $0.22 apiece. Net premium paid to put on the spread amounts to $0.67 per contract, thus establishing a breakeven share price of $16.67 on the trade. Cypress shares reached a 52-week high of $16.25 back on Friday, March 13th, and would need to rally 4.6% over the current level to exceed the breakeven point of $16.25. The spread generates maximum potential profits of $2.33 per contract in the event that CY shares surge more than 20% in the next four months to reach $19.00 by July expiration. Shar...



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Pharmboy

2015 - Biotech Fever

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

PSW Members - well, what a year for biotechs!   The Biotech Index (IBB) is up a whopping 40%, beating the S&P hands down!  The healthcare sector has had a number of high flying IPOs, and beat the Tech Sector in total nubmer of IPOs in the past 12 months.  What could go wrong?

Phil has given his Secret Santa Inflation Hedges for 2015, and since I have been trying to keep my head above water between work, PSW, and baseball with my boys...it is time that something is put together for PSW on biotechs in 2015.

Cancer and fibrosis remain two of the hottest areas for VC backed biotechs to invest their monies.  A number of companies have gone IPO which have drugs/technologies that fight cancer, includin...



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Stock World Weekly

Stock World Weekly

Newsletter writers are available to chat with Members regarding topics presented in SWW, comments are found below each post.

Here's this week's Stock World Weekly.

Click here and sign in with your user name and password. 

 

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Help One Of Our Own PSW Members

"Hello PSW Members –

This is a non-trading topic, but I wanted to post it during trading hours so as many eyes can see it as possible.  Feel free to contact me directly at jennifersurovy@yahoo.com with any questions.

Last fall there was some discussion on the PSW board regarding setting up a YouCaring donation page for a PSW member, Shadowfax. Since then, we have been looking into ways to help get him additional medical services and to pay down his medical debts.  After following those leads, we are ready to move ahead with the YouCaring site. (Link is posted below.)  Any help you can give will be greatly appreciated; not only to help aid in his medical bill debt, but to also show what a great community this group is.

http://www.youcaring.com/medical-fundraiser/help-get-shadowfax-out-from-the-darkness-of-medical-bills-/126743

Thank you for you time!




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