Posts Tagged ‘trading stocks’

The SEC Takes on the Robots

A solution that does nothing to address the problem while reinforcing the notion that prices aren’t based on value but rather the result of automated trading programs. But we knew that. – Ilene 

The SEC Takes on the Robots

Courtesy of Jr. Deputy Accountant 

Again, it’s good to have a "just in case" or twenty readily available, right?

Business Week:

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission’s plan to impose halts on some stocks that swing more than 10 percent starting today may be followed by more measures to slow down trading.

The circuit-breaker test, a response to the May 6 plunge that wiped out $862 million of share value in 20 minutes, will begin as a pilot covering five stocks before expanding next week. SEC Chairman Mary Schapiro said yesterday the agency is considering regulating the speed of stock orders as part of a broader effort to rein in electronic markets.

Call me crazy but aren’t we trying to seduce money into our exchanges and not scare the pants off of it? Note to the SEC: This sort of sh*t scares the money. You’ve been warned.

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Why Futures are Annoying

Why Futures are Annoying

Courtesy of TraderMark at Fund My Mutual Fund

As I type this the S&P 500 is flat after running into the simple moving average just as the ISM Services report was released. All set up for a "rocket fuel run" based on a "surprise" beat. But alas, not to be.

However a flat session in the first hour is deceptive. We are actually down 0.5% in my book. Why? Because all of today’s gains came in the first minutes as premarket futures were marked up half a percent on essentially no reason. 

So a pattern we’ve seen for much of the past year and a half
Premarket move: +0.5%.
Regular session: some sort of loss.

Today they happen to cancel each other out… leading to a flat day. That would be a negative day (at this moment of course) if not for premarket magic.

And this is why the premarket movement the past few years has become beyond annoying. And lest we pin the movement on ‘great news’ in premarket (a) the news was benign and (b) futures were up 0.4% before any news came out in the U.S. – and there was nothing of note overseas. It was just random magic.

There seems to be something unbalanced when a thin market, easily moved by a small slice of money (in the big scheme of things) can affect our day to day action so much. 

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JP Morgan’s Perfect Quarter More Evidence “Game Is Fixed”

Karl Denninger may be calculating the odds of this, coupled with the odds of Goldman Sachs’s results – I’m thinking something in line with the odds of the sudden birth of a new universe. (And if you’re trading the markets, it may feel like that.) – Ilene 

JP Morgan’s Perfect Quarter More Evidence “Game Is Fixed”

Courtesy of Larry Doyle at Sense on Cents 

First Goldman Sachs. Now JP Morgan.

The shop where I worked from 2000-2006 released a report highlighting the fact that it made money each and every day of the 1st quarter. Thanks again to Matt for bringing this story to my attention. Bloomberg highlights, JP Morgan Traders Match Goldman’s Quarter with No Trading Loss,

JPMorgan Chase & Co.’s traders matched those at Goldman Sachs Group Inc. in making money every day of the first quarter, a first for both companies.

Daily trading revenue averaged $118 million on each of the 64 days in the first quarter, JPMorgan said in a regulatory filing yesterday with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

JPMorgan’s trading revenue from investment banking, its chief investment office and consumer lending division exceeded $90 million on 39 of those days, or more than half the time, according to the filing. Trading revenue surpassed $180 million on nine days, or 14 percent of the time, the second-largest U.S. bank said.

Believe me, having worked in the industry for 23 years, traders and firms do not make money each and every day. These results are a reflection of easy money provided by the Fed, lessened competition leading to a financial oligopoly in our country, and a variety of programs and mechanisms which are conduits funneling money into the banking system.

While the traders on Wall Street may believe it is their talents (and plenty are truly talented), the system is rigged and the game is fixed. Uncle Sam is the accomplice to the fix in hopes that revenues being generated currently on Wall Street can be utilized to write down the values of loans which are mismarked, have defaulted, or will default.

Is JP Morgan taken aback by these revenues? Publicly, I believe they are. How do we know? Listen to the statement put forth by the bank.

JPMorgan said it doesn’t expect the same trading revenue throughout the year. “The high level of trading and securities gains in the first

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GS and BP, aka The Axis of Evil Stocks, Up Today

GS and BP, aka The Axis of Evil Stocks, Up Today

Courtesy of Joshua M Brown

One has been accused of serially poisoning investors, the other of serially poisoning the environment.

Call it an oversold bounce, but in a wash of red stocks both BP ($BPand Goldman Sachs ($GSare trading higher today.

Here are the two Axis of Evil Stocks versus the S&P 500 as of 2pm:



hat tip Eddy Elfenbein who noticed this too. 


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Driven toward reward without regard for consequence

This is interesting. However, the conclusion that "individuals with antisocial personality disorder may not be unaware of… consequences… but instead that their intense reward-seeking motivation consumes their attention wholly until they have fulfilled their desire for reward" seems overstated, and only a small piece of the psychopath puzzle.

For a different perspective, that of a financial writer, and an even farther-fetched conclusion, read the second article below. The same data can be interpreted to show that a trader taking on excessive risk is "hopped up on dopamine" so they can’t see negative consequences, making them "kind of a psychopath." Take all this with a grain of salt haloperidol. - Ilene 

Driven toward reward without regard for consequence

Courtesy of TIME, by Tiffany O’Callaghan

TIMEAn overactive dopamine reward system in the brain may help explain why psychopaths pursue rewards without regard for consequences, according to new research published this week in the journal Nature Neuroscience. Previous research has found that individuals who suffer from antisocial personality disorder—often referred to as sociopathology or psychopathology, despite debate over whether these are distinct conditions—lack empathy and fear. Yet this new study, from researchers at Vanderbilt University examines what these individuals may have in excess. According to the study, led by Joshua Buckholtz, a graduate student in psychology at Vanderbilt, individuals with antisocial personality disorder traits show signs of dysfunction in dopamine reward systems—suggesting that, in psychopaths, the drive toward reward can overwhelm all else.

Prior to participating in two different experiments, study subjects completed personality tests to identify presence and severity of psychopathic characteristic—including aggression, lack of empathy, and capacity for manipulation, among other things. Drawing on previous research that has established a strong link between substance abuse and psychopathology, in the first experiment researchers gave participants amphetamine, then used functional Magentic Resonance Imaging (fMRI) brain scans to monitor how dopamine release was affected by the stimulant. In a second experiment, study participants were told that they would be paid for performing a simple task, and researchers conducted brain scans while they completed the tasks.

In both experiments, researchers found that participants who had psychopathic characteristics according to the personality test, were more likely than those without those traits to have greater activity in the nucleus accumbens, the area of the brain associated with dopamine reward processing—whether in response to the chemical stimulant, or the suggestion of monetary reward.

The findings suggest that individuals

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Basic Trading 101

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Basic Trading 101

Courtesy of Allan

For me, trading is not a hobby, not a game of chance not some intellectual odyssey filled with clashing egos and chest pounding pissing contests. No, for me, trading is a way to make a living, doing something I love and am good at. So my approach is a little different then some of you may be used to.

Yet every so often a communication from one you impacts me with frustration and dismay. By now I would think that if you have been with me for six months, or a year, or longer, you would be making money trading, using some ideas and techniques that I have described over the months and years of writing AllAllan. But I hear something else from these communications, I hear that many of you are not getting it.

Today I am going to present to you three ways to trade using the simplest of strategies based on end of day prices and a minimal of necessary hardware or software. I am going to use an unleveraged ETF and remove all of my more sophisticated (read: expensive) tools, using only Market Club Triangles and 3 Line Break Point charts, both very similar in their construction and entirely objective in their application.

You can trade this going forward on XLF and probably not need anything else to be successful month to month, quarter to quarter and year to year. But it is my hope you will instead, glean from this the very basic premise of a simple rule-based system that can be applied and tweaked to any number of tradables, a simple trend following trading system from which anything is possible if you only have the discipline and desire to make it work.

XLF – Market Club Triangles -Daily Chart

market club charts
Their are actually two systems shown on the chart:

(1) Enter trades on appearance of WEEKLY TRIANGLES and exit on appearance of reversing DAILY TRIANGLES. If flat, RE-ENTER on appearance of DAILY TRIANGLE in direction of most recent WEEKLY TRIANGLE;

(2) ENTER/EXIT on appearance of WEEKLY TRIANGLES (disregard DAILY TRIANGLES).

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Zero Hedge

M&A Spikes to Craziest Frenzy Ever as Bottom Falls out of Riskiest End

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Submitted by testosteronepit.

Pfizer’s revenues have been declining for what will be four years in a row by the end of 2015. Its liabilities have ballooned to $104 billion. Its “goodwill” and “intangible assets” – future expenses temporarily parked on the balance sheet – have swollen to $95 billion. It has so much debt in relationship to its real assets that its tangible stockholder equity is a negative $24 billion. It’s facing a “patent cliff,” as new generic drugs are eating into sales and profits of its old drugs. It’s in worse shape than even IBM.

And it no longer wants to pay taxes in the US. So it announced a miracle cure, a marvelous piece of financial and tax engineering: the $160-billi...

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Phil's Favorites

Black and Blue Friday Coming Up

Courtesy of Mish.

Tomorrow is Thanksgiving. Black and Blue Friday will follow, putting U.S. Consumers and Stores in Face Off Over Discounts.
A Reuters/Ipsos survey found more people planned to cut holiday spending than increase in every category surveyed: clothing, jewelry, electronics, food and toys, and that 46 percent felt they could wait longer in the season to buy because of faster shipping.

Appliances, entertainment items, infant products and hardware showed narrowing discounts, MarketTrak reported, while promotions for apparel, toys and electronics were getting bigger.

Kurt Jetta, head of retail industry researcher TABS Group, found the discounts underwhelming....

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Market News

News You Can Use From Phil's Stock World


Financial Markets and Economy

Barclays bets on stock boom as world money growth soars (The Telegraph)

Barclays has advised clients to jump into world stock markets with both feet, citing the fastest growth in the global money supply in over thirty years and an accelerating recovery in China .

Ian Scott, the bank’s global equity strategist, said the sheer force of liquidity will overwhelm the first interest rate rises by the US Federal Reserve, expected to kick off next month.

The reason Pfizer doesn't have to care what politicians say about its $160 billion merger&nbs...

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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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Chart School

2-0 Bulls

Courtesy of Declan.

A second day for bulls to shine despite modest end-of-day gains. Some indices did better than others. The Russell 2000 was the key performer. It finished with a MACD trigger 'buy' and looks ready to outperform the Nasdaq 100.  This is an important development for bulls looking for more from other indices. A move to challenge - then break - its 200-day MA, would convert August-November action into a healthy basing action.

The Nasdaq registered higher volume accumulation as a brief sojourn below the 20-day MA was reversed. It's nicely set up for a push to new swing highs.


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Kimble Charting Solutions

S&P 500 – Dangerous for bull case, if prices turn weak here!

Courtesy of Chris Kimble.


The S&P 500 remains inside of a rising channel that has been in place since 2010. The 5-year trend is up.

The 5-month trend is a different story, at this time.

Over the past 5-months, the S&P 500 has created a series of “falling weekly closing highs,” which is represented by line (1) above.

The S&P is testing this falling resistance line at (2) above.

If weakness takes place at (2) above, at falling resistance, it would be concerning price action for the bullish case!


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Sector Detector: Bulls wrest back control of market direction, despite global adversity

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

Courtesy of Sabrient Systems and Gradient Analytics

Some weeks when I write this article there is little new to talk about from the prior week. It’s always the Fed, global QE, China growth, election chatter, oil prices, etc. And then there are times like this in which there is so much happening that I don’t know where to start. Of course, the biggest market-moving news came the weekend before last when Paris was put face-to-face with the depths of human depravity and savagery. And yet the stock market responded with its best week of the year. As a result, the key issues dominating the front page and election chatter have moved from the economy and jobs to national security and a real war (rather than police ...

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Swing trading portfolio - week of November 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's Computing Network is More Powerful than 525 Googles and 10,000 Banks!

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Submitted by Reggie Middleton.

I've decided to build our startup - Veritaseum, a peer-to-peer financial services platform, directly on top of the Bitcoin Blockchain. Many queried why I would voluntarily give up a lucrative advisory and consulting business to chase virtual coins in cyberspace. That's exactly why I decided to do it. That level of misunderstanding of what is essentially the second coming of the Internet gave me a fundamental advantage over those who had deeper connections, more capital and more firepower. I was the first mover advantage holder.

You see, Bitcoin is not about coins, currency or price pops. It is a massive computing net...

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PSW is more than just stock talk!


We know you love coming here for our Stocks & Options education, strategy and trade ideas, and for Phil's daily commentary which you can't live without, but there's more! features the most important and most interesting news items from around the web, all day, every day!

News: If you missed it, you can probably find it in our Market News section. We sift through piles of news so you don't have to.   

If you are looking for non-mainstream, provocatively-narrated news and opinion pieces which promise to make you think -- we feature Zero Hedge, ...

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Whitney Tilson On LL, EXACT, And Martin Shkreli


Whitney Tilson On LL, EXACT, And Martin Shkreli

Courtesy of Value Walk

1) The shares of one of my largest short positions (~3%), Exact Sciences, crashed by more than 46% yesterday. Below is the article I published this morning on SeekingAlpha, explaining why I think it’s still a great short and thus shorted more yesterday. Here’s a summary:

  • The U.S. Preventative Services Task Force’s Colorectal Cancer Screening Draft Recommendation issued yesterday is devastating for Exact Sciences’ only product, Cologuard.
  • I think this is the beginning of the end for the company.
  • My price target for the stock a year from now is $3, so I shorted more yes...

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Baxter's Spinoff

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

Baxter Int. (BAX) is splitting off its BioSciences division into a new company called Baxalta. Shares of Baxalta will be given as a tax-free dividend, in the ratio of one to one, to BAX holders on record on June 17, 2015. That means, if you want to receive the Baxalta dividend, you need to buy the stock this week (on or before June 12).

The Baxalta Spinoff

By Ilene with Trevor of Lowenthal Capital Partners and Paul Price

In its recent filing with the SEC, Baxter provides:

“This information statement is being ...

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Mapping The Market

An update on oil proxies

Courtesy of Jean-Luc Saillard

Back in December, I wrote a post on my blog where I compared the performances of various ETFs related to the oil industry. I was looking for the best possible proxy to match the moves of oil prices if you didn't want to play with futures. At the time, I concluded that for medium term trades, USO and the leveraged ETFs UCO and SCO were the most promising. Longer term, broader ETFs like OIH and XLE might make better investment if oil prices do recover to more profitable prices since ETF linked to futures like USO, UCO and SCO do suffer from decay. It also seemed that DIG and DUG could be promising if OIH could recover as it should with the price of oil, but that they don't make a good proxy for the price of oil itself. 


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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 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.

Thank you for you time!

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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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