Posts Tagged ‘X’

Bullish Action In U.S. Steel Options As Stock Pops

U.S. stocks are rallying on the final trading day of the week, rebounding somewhat from Thursday’s selloff in the wake of the Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash in Ukraine and escalation of fighting in Gaza. The S&P 500 Index is higher by 0.65% at 1970.50 as of the time of this writing. Outperforming that Index today is U.S. Steel Corp. (Ticker: X), though the largest U.S. metal producer by volume is no longer in the S&P 500 Index, having been replaced by Martin Marietta Materials Inc. (Ticker: MLM) and added to the S&P MidCap 400 Index on July 1st. Shares in U.S. Steel are up better than 3.5% to stand at $27.55 as of 11:25 a.m. ET.

The metal producer’s shares have had a strong summer so far, with the price of the underlying up more than 20% since the beginning of June, and more than 60% since August of 2013. Options trading on the stock today suggests one or more traders are positioning for the shares to continue to rally in the week prior to the company’s second-quarter earnings report on July 29th. It looks like more than 3,000 of the 25Jul’14 29.0 strike calls were purchased this morning at an average premium of $0.12 per contract. Buyers of the 29.0 strike calls stand ready to profit at expiration next week in the event that U.S. Steel shares rally another 6.0% over the current price of $27.55 to exceed the average breakeven point at $29.12.

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Try and Try Again Tuesday – 3 More Trade Ideas That Make 300% if the Market Pops

Here we go again (again)!

Yep, that's what I said last Tuesday and the Tuesday before that because Tuesday is a day they push the Futures higher and ditch the Dollar and tell you that this time it's different because of the same rumors they had the Tuesday before only this week – the data is getting worse and worse, as we know is better, right?  

Last Tuesday we set levels to capitulate and go fully bullish at Dow 13,464, S&P 1,428, Nasdaq 3,060, NYSE 8,160 and Russell 816 and, as of yesterday's close we had the Nasdaq and the Russell over their marks needing just one confirmation to make it 3 of 5 and begin to flip our short-term portfolios (the $25KPs) bullish.  We are soooo close but, so far – no cigar.  

While we waited, we looked at some upside hedges that would do well if the market continued higher.  Just as we get downside protection when we're bullish – we use upside protection when we're bearish and I suggested taking 5% or 10% positions in aggressive upside plays to help balance a bearish portfolio against – well against exactly what happened in the past 7 days.  Our trade ideas were:  

  • 2 FAS Oct $105/115 bull call spread at $2, selling 1 BBY 2014 $18 puts for $3.25 for net .75, now $1.15 – up 53%
  • 2014 SHLD $32.50 puts sold for $7.50, now $6.40 – up 15% 
  • 6 EWJ Jan $9 calls at .53, selling 1 BBY 2014 $18 put at $3.25 for a net .07 credit, still net .07 credit – even 
  • TNA Oct $55/61 bull call spread at $2.50, selling Oct $42 puts for $1.90 for net .60, now $1.80 – up 200%

The BBY puts jumped over 20% yesterday, from below $3 to $3.75 and that killed two of our trades (and worse today after earnings!), that were up significantly in Friday's update (which is why we take quick gains like that off the table).  The good news is the EWJ play gives us a nice, new entry at the same net price so that one is still good and, of course, we are done with TNA after making 200% in a week and we'll find a fresh horse for that money.

Speaking of fresh horses – for our offsetting short puts today – let's take…
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More Monday Morning Foolishness – Playing a Rigged Game

Click to ViewThink Mcfly, THINK!

Forget the rhetoric, forget what Cramer says – or any of the other idiots on what used to be accurately called "the idiot box."  Just look at this one, simple chart (thanks Doug Short) and tell me – why on earth would the Fed step in and take emergency action when the market is at a multi-year high?  

Have they EVER done this before?  EVER?  Has ANY Central Bank EVER taken emergency liquidity measures when their stock market was at or near their all-time highs?  And look at the interest rates (the red line) – there's nowhere to go folks – not unless the Fed is going to start PAYING US to borrow money.  In which case – sign me up for $10Bn…

This is the point that was made this week on the cover of Stock World Weekly, and my comments in "The Week Ahead" section were:

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Toeing the Line Tuesday – Constructively Bullish?

As I said yesterday, we're still looking "constructively bullish" on our Big Chart as long as we hold those lines:

Looks can, of course, be deceiving.  Keep in mind that this entire pop to form the right-hand top of a very nasty "M" pattern, that can take us right back to the June lows by the end of the month, is the result of the G20 holding hands and singing  Kum Ba Yah – along with a few hundred Billion in extra stimulus and, of course, RULE CHANGES that create stealth stimulus

So, when you have a leak in a $60Tn pool and the water level is down to $55Tn and you pour in $12Tn worth of stimulus and, 3 years later, the water level is only back to $59Tn – do you say "all we need is another Trillion and we're done" or should you be looking for the leak that continues to drain $8Tn over 3 years from the Global Economic Swimming Pool?  

If we don't address the problem (unemployment, inadequate tax collections) – we're never going to find a lasting solution, are we?  

On the other hand, if your pool is leaking at a rate of $8Tn over 3 years, that's "only" $222Bn a month so any month you dump more than $222Bn worth of Global Stimulus into the pool, you will see the economic levels rising and you can declare things to be "fixed" and all the bulls can jump in and play again until the next time the activity levels get dangerously close to the line at which the pumps seize up and then we have more meetings and do it all over again.  

We have to accept the fact that our "leaders" are unwilling or unable to fix the actual leak and this is essentially the cycle we will have to put up with.  If we assume we have an infinite amount of stimulus to keep pumping our economic pool back up – then this system is just fine but, judging from the way they had to scrape up this recent few hundred Billion – do we even have enough ($1.2Tn) fresh water to get us through the end of the year?  

As planned in yesterday's pre-market post, we cashed in our DIA $129 calls in the morning and that left us a bit bearish in our small portfolios.…
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Monday Market Momentum – Use It Or Lose It

SPY 5 MINUTENow we need follow-through.

I think we've already blown the opportunity.  In Stock World Weekly we discussed the stealth bailouts jammed into the Transportation bill on Friday which rightly sent the markets flying higher into the close of the quarter (I know quelle suprise!).  As noted by David Fry, GS was working hard behind the scenes to make sure that, in the end, Germany toe'd the line.

For the year so far, the Dow is up 3.89%, S&P is up 6.66% (so you KNOW Goldman is involved), the Nasdaq is up 10.81%, NYSE 2.33% (all of it gained on Friday) and the Russell 6.15%.  See how great everything is?

We took the money and ran, again, as we hit some clear resistance lines (see SWW) on our Big Chart and there was no sense risking a 10% gain in our first week in our new $25,000 Portfolio with the July 4th holiday coming up (we have a half-day tomorrow and we're closed on Wednesday).  

The only trades we left active in the $25KP was 5 OIH July $35 calls at $1.25 (still $1.25), 10 DIA July $129 calls at $1.10 (now $1.35) and 10 SQQQ July $49/53 bull call spreads at $1 (now .75) we added later in the day to protect them in case we had a big dip this week.  If we make it through Friday above the lines on our Big Chart – then we will continue to be "constructively bullish" and we'll be happy to deploy more cash but, into 2 days off – NO THANKS!  

In fact, as we're already up 22% on the DIA calls – if we get another pop this morning, those are likely to come off the table as well.  After all, how much money should you expect to make in 48 hours?  This is a very unnatural and manipulated market and it's great to play it – as long as you keep that in mind!  The danger comes when you delude yourself that this is some kind of "investing" environment when it's actually just gambling ahead of Q2 earnings reports – that could send us right back into a tail-spin.  

Or, maybe not – as a key amendment to the Transportation Bill will add Billions of Dollars in profits to the S&P 500 by allowing Corporate Pension Plans to use the average…
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April 30th and All is Well – ROFL!

Is this time going to be different?

Sure, why not?  Don't let the fact that we had pretty nasty sell-offs the last 4 Mays dissuade you from being gung-ho bullish into this one – after all – it takes bulls and bears to make a market, doesn't it?  

We've been prone to focusing on the negative lately – mostly because the positive is pretty much all you hear in the Corporate Media and we like to have balance.  If they were too bearish, I'd make a bullish case but this weekend we focused on "Money, Power and Wall Street," and the deteriorating Global situation, which got no better this morning with Spain's -0.3% GDP Report, Eurozone Inflation above forecasts at 2.6%, the S&P downgrading 16 Spanish Banks, California's Tax Collections are running 26% behind schedule, gasoline is hitting record highs in Europe while Business Investment in Europe drops BELOW the 2008 lows:

SPY DAILYShould we be concerned?  Why should we be – look how high the market is!   Doesn't that prove that everything is OK?  It sure proved it in October of 2007, when the Dow was at 14,000 and it was still proving it on Monday, May 19th, 2008 – when the Dow was at 13,028 for the last time until March 13th of this year, when 200-point one-day pop sent us all the way to 13,177.  We topped out around and fell all the way to 12,700 a month later but now we're back and THIS TIME IS DIFFERENT, right?  

For one thing, the SNB spent $4.1Bn propping up the Euro in Q1 – that's a lot of money for a country whose entire GDP is just $500Bn!  Fortunately for the Swiss, their insane money printing did cause their gold holdings to rise by $1.2Bn so their net loss in manipulating the Global economy was "only" $2.8Bn so I'm sure they can sustain this farce for another quarter or two if they wish.  

Farce is too kind a description for the fraud being perpetrated by the Central Banksters, according to the Economic Policy Journal's Bob Wenzel, what had this to say in his speech to the NY Fed last week (the whole speech is a must read):  

Under Chairman Bernanke there have been significant changes in direction

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Wednesday Wheeee – No More QE For You!

SPY 5 MINUTEI hate to say I told you so but…

Oh, who are we kidding?  I could not be happier saying I told you so and neither could our Members as our "Sell in March and Go Away" strategy seems to have hit the nail on the head – and it's only April 4th!  

Back then (2/24), we were still bullish but the plan was to let the rally run its course and cash out ahead of earnings and our plays from that Wednesday (2/22) which I posted right in the morning post for all to see, have performed very well, of course.  

We had April SQQQ and DXD hedges that failed, of course, but those were paid for by the short sale of AAPL 2014 $300 puts for $15, which are already $10.75, so up 28% already on those pays for a lot of protection.  

Another offset we had looked at was the short sale of FDX April $80 puts at $1.10, which expired worthless (up 100%).  We also looked at longer-term put sales on SKX, with the Oct $12 puts fetching $1.55 per contract, now $1.25 (up 19%), and the T 2014 $25 puts at $2.15, now $1.75 (up 18%). 

Along the same vein, the XOM 2014 $65 puts at $5, now $4.05 (up 19%) were sold to pay for the SU 2014 $25/37 bull call spread for $6 for net $1 on the spread.  The bull call spread is still $6 but that's net $1.95 now – up 95% on the combo.  Our other bullish play on oil was the USO June $40/46 bull call spread at $2, selling he SCO Oct $26 puts for $3 for a net $1 credit.  The USO spread has fallen to $1.40 but the short SCO puts dropped to $1.65 a net gain of .75 – up a quick 75% on a fairly neutral oil play, which was BRILLIANT as it covered many, many of our aggressive oil shorts over the month that went VERY well

Our other trade ideas from the morning post (and the logic and strategies are detailed in the post):  

  • AA 2014 $10 puts sold for $2, still $2 – even
  • X at $28.49, selling Jan $25 calls for $8.50 and 2014 $20 puts for $2.95 for net $17.04/18.52 

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Toppy Tuesday or Time to Buy the Dip?

Just when I thought I could get bullish, they pull back again!  

While still EXTREMELY skeptical of this rally, I AM trying to get in the spirit.  As I noted yesterday, we have aggressive new levels that we determined in our weekend review of our 5% Rule and still need to see some more progress before we can throw caution to the wind and BUYBUYBUY like it's 1999.  Despite our best efforts, the silly move in the Russell yesterday had me putting up a TZA hedge in our morning Member Chat:  

RUT made a crazy move from 823 to 830 this morning for no good reason.  TZA April $17 puts can be sold for $1 and the the $17/18 bull call spread can be bought for .42 for a net .58 credit for a $16.42 net entry with TZA currently at $17.73 so it's a hedge with a bet against RUT 850 in 30 days.  

At 1:23, I followed up by saying: "Look at the RUT now, stuck at the 1.25% line. Obviously, 840 is the 5% move up from the new 800 base so we take that and expect an 8-point pullback but the indexes have been routinely overshooting by 20% (848) and even 40% (856) before pulling back so now that we're past 840 without a pullback, we'll just have to wait and see but, no matter what, we should expect to see 832 re-tested eventually, which is why I liked the TZA play as they crossed that line this morning."

SPY WEEKLYAs it worked out, that was the dead top of the RUT and we quickly got our break back below 840 and our ride down to 832 at the close.  At 2:50, the Russell Futures failed to get back over 840 and my comment to Members was: "840 on RUT, this is the spot to press those shorts if ever."  As you can see from the above chart – we went very nicely off a cliff right after that.  JRW, our Russell expert had called the bull run and was ahead of me at 2:29, calling "Back to cash!" and my comment, also at 2:50 was:

Cash/JRW – I agree.  As I said last week, better to miss 5% of the next round of foolishness than play

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Monday Market Movement – Trying to Get Bullish

We are still trying to get more bullish.

Over the weekend we set a new, higher set of levels for our Big Chart on the assumption that our breakout levels hold up and our new Must Hold lines become Dow 13,600 (not there yet), S&P 1,360, Nasdaq 3,000, NYSE 8,000 and Russell 800, which means it's now up to the Dow and Nasdaq to continue to show leadership if we're going to be having a rally good enough to get us to add our next 10 bullish plays.

I already added 2 aggressive upside trade ideas on XLF and SPY in the weekend post and last week we already looked at WFR, X, BAC, GLW, BBY, CHK, AAPL, AA, and BA but we also added a new Long Put List (Members Only), which had 19 stocks that we thought were good downside horses to ride if, per chance, we fail to hold 3 of our 5 breakout levels.  

It shouldn't be too much to ask – IF this is a real bull market.  We've been extremely skeptical up to this point and, Fundamentally, I still have my doubts but Technically, we can't keep fighting the tape so were drawing a line in the sand for Mr. Market to cross and, if it does so, we're happy to play along.  If it fails to do so, however, well – we've already made those bets!  

Our aggressive take on the Dow is the result of analyzing the 5 components that were replaced since the crash with MO and HON thrown out for BAC and CVX in Feb of 2008, AIG replaced by KFT in Sept 2008 and C and GM replaced by CSCO and TRV in June 2009, causing a massive distortion in the index, meaning 16,000 is the old 15,000, possibly even lower:  

The Nasdaq is similarly distorted by AAPL, who are up 500% since 2009 and when a stock that is 11.5% of an index is up 500%, that stock alone causes the index to go up 57.5%, which is why we now call it the AAPLdaq.  The AAPLdaq itself is "only" up 100%, which means the ENTIRE rest of the index is lagging with a 42.5% contribution – those who tell you that tech is somehow loved again are fooling themselves
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TGIF – Stop the Rally We Want to Get Off!

I have never hated an up market more.  

Even on October 1st, 2008, when I wrote "Hedging for Disaster," where we added 3 ultra short ETFs at Dow 10,650 (SKF Jan $100s at $19, DXD April $55s at $14.20 and SDS March $77s at $9.95) we still had some hope that the Congressional bailout would stabilize the markets, although my comment at the end of that post is just as relevant today as it was at that market top:  

Congress  many think Paulson and Bernanke and Warren Buffett are kidding when they say we are about to go over an economic cliff but I think there is certainly enough evidence to merit serious concern.  In part, we have a crisis of confidence and – even if it were true that we could "muddle through" without a bailout, if just 1/3 of the investors believe that we can’t and pull out of the markets, what good will it do the remaining optimists?

You know how that story ends, of course – the stimulated "recovery" was very short-lived and we went right back off that cliff, dropping 2,000 points that week and another 2,000 by March 9th the next year.  Our hedges worked out nicely, of course, with SKF topping out at $1,200 on Nov 21st (up 5,600%), DXD was at $110 on October 10th for a nice $40.80 profit in 9 days (287%) and SDS ran to $130 on the same day and returned 430%.  

The other day, I published a list of 12 Long Put Plays for Members (see yesterday's Alert), which I worked at in the morning, after I put up my 10 Bullish Ideas in the morning post.  Why?  Because, after watching the open and reading the news, I could only conclude that this rally is still fake, Fake, FAKE!  Back in October '08, we were already 25% off our 2007 highs where I used to make fun of the market going up every day, like on October 2nd of that year, when I said:

Superman ReturnsUp, up and away – it’s Super Market!

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Market News

News You Can Use From Phil's Stock World


Financial Markets and Economy

S&P 500 Futures Little Changed; Alcoa Drops After Earnings Miss (Bloomberg)

U.S. stock-index futures were little changed, after disappointing results from Alcoa Inc. offset optimism from a winning streak that’s put the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index on track for its best week of the year.

France's economy is finally showing some signs of life after years of stagnation (Business Insider)

It's a rare week when there are two positive economic data points coming out of France.


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Zero Hedge

Europe Reveals How Accounts Will Be Frozen During the Next Crisis

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Submitted by Phoenix Capital Research.

In the last 24 months, Canada, Cyprus, New Zealand, the US, the UK, and now Germany have all implemented legislation that would allow them to first FREEZE and then SEIZE bank assets during the next crisis.

These moves will be sold as “for the public’s good,” when they happen. But the reality is that it’s all about stopping people from moving their capital into actual physical cash.

The whole template for this was set out in Cyprus in 2013. The quick timeline for what happened in Cyprus is as follows:

·      June 25, 2012: Cyprus formally requests a bailout from the EU.


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Kimble Charting Solutions

Free Premium Trail Offer & Free Webinar Viewing Available Now!

Courtesy of Chris Kimble.


Ryan Detrick and I produced a webinar this week, covering some new indicators we created, which we shared publicly for the first time.

We also shared two new Buy & Hold indicators we created, as well as two short-term trades, that look goo...

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Phil's Favorites

VIX Trips From 37 To 20 Have Been All-Or-Nothing For Stocks

Courtesy of Dana Lyons

Everyone knows that spikes in the S&P 500 Volatility Index, a.k.a. “VIX”, are associated with distress in the equity markets. The recent August decline in stocks was a perfect example of this as the VIX jumped from near 11 to over 50 in just a few weeks with the S&P 500 dropping by more than 10%. As stocks have recovered, the VIX has calmed down. As of Monday, the VIX closed below 20 for the first time since the middle of August. Such returns to “normalcy” in the VIX have typically been associated with a return to calmer times in the equity market. This recent round trip in the VIX got us wondering how reliable of an all-clear signal that has been for stocks historically. So…surprise, we checked it out.

We originally searched for all occasions in which the VIX first returned t...

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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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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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Chart School

Yesterday's Losses Reversed

Courtesy of Declan.

Bulls can be happy with today's progress. What weakness emerged today was reversed by the close, a change on yesterday's action where sellers dumped in the last few minutes of trading. Volume climbed to register an accumulation day.

The S&P finished at the 50-day MA, but beyond that there is plenty of room beyond that to run to the next level of resistance at 2,045. Technicals are net bullish.

The Nasdaq pushed off its 20-day MA and has another 50 points of maneuver before it gets to its 50-day MA.  Technicals are not yet net bullish, but they are close.


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Sector Detector: Searching for solid support in the face of global headwinds

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

Courtesy of Sabrient Systems and Gradient Analytics

Uncertainty about the health of the global economy led investors to flee U.S. equities during Q3, primarily driven by worries about China's growth prospects and the Federal Reserve’s decision to not raise rates. Sure, there are plenty of real and perceived headwinds, but on balance it seems that a recession here at home is not in the cards. And when you consider sentiment and the technical picture, it appears that a continuation of Friday’s bounce is in store. The question remains as to whether the seasonally strong Q4 will be able to propel the bulls through levels of resistance that have built up.

In this weekly update, I give my view o...

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Swing trading portfolio - week of October 5th, 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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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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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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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!

FeedTheBull - Top Stock market and Finance Sites

About Phil:

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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About Ilene:

Ilene is editor and affiliate program coordinator for PSW. She manages the site market shadows, archives, more. Contact Ilene to learn about our affiliate and content sharing programs.

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