Archive for November, 2005

Demand Destruction

High fuel prices cause demand destruction, but not because people suddenly change their driving habits and become conservationists. Rather, plants close and people lose their jobs. High natural gas prices are already taking a toll. ” – PastPeak.com

We are facing a possible “Demand Destruction” on two fronts, one being oil and one being housing.

In oil, the above quote holds true, at a certain price people do use less. The real question is how much less can you use? Almost any commodity can suffer from demand destruction, even food can be cut down when necessary but does energy really fall into that category or is it like Air and Drinking Water, two things that presumably you would need in the same quantity no matter what the cost.

I think oil is more like food, yes you need it but not that much. Just try to drive your Hummer in London and you will find it barely fits on many streets and there is just nowhere you can possibly park it! Europeans, who have been paying $4 a gallon for gas since the 70s, have learned to cut back about 1/2 their total consumption.

Since we consume 1/3 of the world’s energy in the US (I know, it’s sick) we can assume we must have a little room to cut back since the other 5.8 Billion people seem to get by on an average of 1/10th the amount of energy that the average American consumes. Even if you throw out all of Africa and most of India and China since they are farmers, you still have 300M people over here eating 33% of the energy pie while 3Bn people over there are getting by on the rest.

So even being generous, we use 5x more energy per person that the rest of the industrialized world.

Well, I’m embarrassed, how about you? And they just sent us their oil to help out after Katrina/Rita!!! I don’t think the rest of the world can really cut back on their consumption but I am sure we can but even if we cut back 25% over 2 years, that would only drop world consumption by 7%. So I am long on oil because we are running out of it a lot faster than that but, in the short run, I think we are in a panic sell-off.

My targets for Oil Shorts are based…
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Back to Work

Boy am I glad I missed yesterday – what a mess!

It was a low volume down day after a holiday, easy to write off in retrospect but very painful to sit through.

Just like any good department store, the market likes to throw a sale every once in a while. The trick is to figure out if it is a real bargain or part of a “going out of business” spiral.

I made 2 trades yesterday: I shorted DHI, not because I don’t like them but because they have had a nice run-up and housing will be out of favor for a couple of days. I also went back to the well on RIMM and got the Dec. $65 put since they are back at the top of their channel and running into the 50 dma of $65.50.

After a day like yesterday we have to decide whether we still have faith in the market or not (I do) and then what opportunities we were given to get in.

I’m already committed to MSFT with Jan $27.50 calls and yesterday’s action reaffirmed my faith as they held steady on a very bad day so I am holding but I don’t think I would call the .90 price of the call a bargain yet as it could go either way.

HET (I have the Jan $65s) will be a big buy if it holds the 200 dma of $68 which it broke last Monday. Setting $68 as a floor will be a powerful indicator for the stock.

PLAY (I have the Dec $25s) is testing its 50 dma of $25, if it goes through that, expect it to head back to $27. If Apple continues up, there will be no stopping PLAY.

Very bad timing on the Valero trade so we buy out the $2 option we sold for .75 and use that to offset (a little) the $4 loss on the call and wait for oil to calm down.

I will be cautious today, we either make up yesterday’s loss and the market is Uber-Bullish or we descend further and perhaps this will be a correction week. After 4 straight up weeks, the correction could be a bitch!

Looking at very long term trends though, I think the market may be just getting started in a super rally that could take it up at least another 5% (Dow 11,500,…
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Trade of the Day – Valero

This is a long trade on my favorite oil stock and it’s tricky to do so we will track it like the Google spread play.

Valero is splitting (don’t know when) which will mean your options will split and your premium will increase substantially.

It’s a great stock with a lot of room to grow and I think this price (as long as oil stays above $55) is still a bargain.

This trade is for AFTER inventory and only if there is a draw down, indicating a change in market direction back to positive for oil.

I’m taking the January ’08 $90s for $31.20, a $19 premium over 2 years.

I’m selling the December $110s when they pass $2 and retrace .25 so as to maximize the premium I’m charging. I do not want this call to go positive on me so I will buy it back for a 50% loss ($3) if I have to because if the stock splits on you, this guy will make out like a bandit and eat up all your profits.

The goal is to sell more than $31 worth of calls before Jan ’08 leaving us with a free (or 2 free $50) $100 call on a stock that has gone up 20x in 10 years.

At the moment, I will only want to sell way out of the money calls, but if the stock turns on us, I will be looking at some more interesting tricks.

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It looks like yesterday’s Trade of The Day #3 is a grand slam! RIMM is getting hammered in the pre-market, now I’m glad I went with my gut and rode out the head fake!

Since I am getting on a plane, I am going to take my huge profit off the table early and reinvest 30% of the profit in some cheap, out of the money calls. If this thing goes it will collapse fast but it also could turn back on a dime with a posive announcement of a deal with NTP (but I doubt it).

It’s hard to call because of the massive move but it looks like I will be exiting my $65 puts for a nice double at $7 and I will look to pick up about the same number of $50 puts for $1.20 so if the stock goes down to $40 I will only be missing $7 of the…
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Happy Thanksgiving

Like any good trader, today is the start of my vacation so I probably won’t be posting again until Tuesday.

The market is kind of wacky around a holiday anyway so it’s a good time to stay out.

The only play I’ll be watching on the way to the airport is oil.

If there is any kind of draw in oil or distillates it will be a surprise and could really goose the industry. The same oil list as yesterday would apply with the Valero Rule being in full effect (VLO was up $3.30 yesterday).

XOM and COP are dragging their heels, they are just not buying into this “oil fad” but, if the price of oil goes up, Valero goes up and the inventory draws down (dollar is declining a bit which will keep oil from dropping much no matter what) then XOM and COP will play catch-up with a big move.

=====================================

Think of gold as an international game of poker with the rich Arabs just sitting down at the table. They did a little buy-in yesterday and now we will give them a chance to win buy giving away some cheap holiday gold. Then we run gold up to a new record, let them get all excited about how easy this game is and, once they are all in, we drop the price and take their cash.

Don’t be too greedy as this is a game for big boys but it will be a lot of fun to watch the action. Perhaps we can figure out how to televise it with celebrity palyers and call it Celebrity Futures Showdown or something.

Have a very happy Thanksgiving,





Keep on Rockin’

The FRK $46.63 call is up to $6, almost a double…

I would strongly suggest a .50 trailing stop here to preserve a $2.20 gain. No sense being greedy, if it pulls back we just wait and reenter when it’s safe.

Update on the Google Spread

Last Friday we were here:

Buy the March ’06 $450 call for $17 // Now at $19.20
Sell the January ’06 $470 for $5 // Now at $5.60+
Buy the March ’06 $360 put for $14 // Now at $14.50

The $360 put peaked out at $17 and we stopped out at $16.3o yesterday for a $2.30 profit.

The $450 never dropped back to $17 (lucky for us) and is now worth $26, a $9 profit!
We can’t sell it though because we have the obligation on the call we sold. The $470 is now worth $8.60, a huge profit for that guy!

At this point we can buy him out and close out, taking the $3 hit to our $11.30 profit or we can wait it out. I’m for waiting it out with tight 10% stops. If our friend ends up in the money, we will always have a $25-35 advantage in the least.

So that’s a nice $8.30 profit on a $28 investment in 2 trading days – not a bad way to hedge!

Tomorrow will be very dicy with lots of optionholders being forced to sell shares they can’t afford but the buying has been intense so I couldn’t tell you which way to play it!





Tuesday Afternoon

Wow! What a day that was.

The lows, the highs…

A few disappointments but nothing I wanted to dump based on a day’s trading. I did exit my long on Genzyme as it was the exact opposite of the umbrellas I mentioned earlier.

Bottom fishing winners: CVC (1%), AGEN (6%), FMTI (1.6%), JAS (1%), FRN (.6%), SGY (1.4%), the only loser was CMRT but one day someone will realize they sell Toyotas too!

Overstock was a disaster! But at least it opened that far down. The December $40s have too much premium ($2.60) for my taste so I never entered.

MRB had an exciting morning but ended flat – I still like this one.

NGS opened way up and stayed there. Chart looks good, not great. A lot will ride on tomorrow’s oil report, not sure what happens to Thursday’s gas report with holiday.

Like I said, all you needed was a monkey and a dartboard to make money on oil today.

MUR really got going with XTO, HAWK, DO and HAL all picking up 4%. BTU also made a good move and the best thing was they had a slow start so we all had plenty of time to buy!

SBUX was rejected at the high so no buy. Long way to go on a pullback.

WFMI might be out of gas.

RIMM has a bit of a GM feel to it. Everyone is scrambling to assure the investors but she’s taking on a lot of water. I pulled the stop so I’m holding on to it with a painful loss. Had I listened to my 10 oclock self I could have saved myself .80 on the option.

Always remember Rule #2: Do as I say, not as I do! One day I will listen to myself.

Even if RIMM settles, the deal looks like it will cost them 2 year’s profits. That’s not good!





Told You So

See, good Fed news!

It was really tough riding today out but now we will be rewarded.

Some Fed members are concerned about “Going to far” and they say there will be a language change “soon!”

Stock party at my house, everyone can come…





Umbrella Stocks

On a blah market day I like to watch the ticker for stocks that can keep you dry when the market starts to rain.

A lot of my favorites are there:

INTC
TXN
UPS
WMT
TWX
VLO
GLW
AAPL
JOE

When your virtual portfolio is down, write down 20 stocks (that you like) that are up that day. Ones that appear on 7 out of 10 lists are excellent ones to balance out your virtual portfolio.





Doubting the Dow

Sometimes I find myself watching the Dow (like today) and hoping it can go up otherwise “the market is in trouble.” Then I kick myself and try to remember how silly this index is in today’s world.

The Dow is made up of some of the worst moving companies in the world. In their search for stability, the Dow has given us consistent lethargy instead. Since the Dow is still the key index that drives all news, people get a very false impression of “what the market is doing” by overemphasizing this index.

We have companies with unions problems aplenty, companies that are generally over 100 years old with most of their growth behind them, companies with hundreds of thousands of employees who are, for the most part, ill suited in today’s rapidly changing business environment.

Some of these companies cancel each other out, like Dupont and Exxon, while others are practically twins: VZ/SBC, Pfizer/Merk, Citigroup/JPM, UTX/BA, P&G/J&J…

If this were your virtual portfolio, you would surely want to swap either Merk of Pfizer with DNA or GENZ. Altria has been in years of litigation and should have gone years ago. Disney, MSFT, IBM, KO and INTC all dominate spaces in such a way that real growth is hardly possible.

I would certainly replace GM with Toyota but I’m sure I would be arrested under some clause in the patriot act. The reality is that Toyota will soon employ more Americans than GM.

So don’t let the Dow get you down but also remember, it has that effect on everyone else. On a day like today when I am hoping for a turnaround, I watch the Nasdaq and the S&P – the Dow is a follower of those stocks, it hasn’t been a leader since the 70′s.

DJIA Components:

SBC – SBC Communications
GM – General Motors
MO – Altria
MRK – Merck
VZ – Verizon
JPM – JP Morgan Chase
C – Citigroup
DD – DuPont
PFE – Pfizer
GE – General Electric
KO – Coca-Cola
HON – Honeywell
XOM – ExxonMobil
BA – Boeing
AA – Alcoa
PG – Procter & Gamble
JNJ – Johnson & Johnson
MMM – 3M
MCD –…
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RIMM Alert – Trade of Day #3 I guess…

Thinkequity just gave a very nasty (and well-deserved) downgrade to RIMM with a plunging target of $45.

Citing the lawsuit (of course) and a crush of new competition, the analyst was just on CNBC yelling abandon ship.

I will be jumping on this one because I was liking the short anyway as it bounced hard off the 50 dma of $67.50 yesterday.

Unfortunately it might open very low so this one will require some finesse, check the comments on this log for a play by play.





 
 
 

Zero Hedge

As China's Banking System Freezes, SHIBOR Tumbles To Lowest In A Decade

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

One trading day after we reported that China was "Hit By "Significant Banking Stress" as SHIBOR tumbled to recession levels, and less than a week after we warned that China's interbank market was freezing up in the aftermath of the Baoshang Bank collapse and subsequent seizure, which led to a surg...



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Phil's Favorites

Corporate boards are supposed to oversee companies but often turn a blind eye

 

Corporate boards are supposed to oversee companies but often turn a blind eye

Courtesy of Siri Terjesen, American University Kogod School of Business

A lot of giant companies are getting into big trouble these days.

When Boeing 737 Max aircraft crashed in Indonesia and Ethiopia, killing a total of 346 people in October 2018 and March 2019, the disasters raised serious questions about the safety of the aviation leader’s anti-stall system.

When some 5,000 Wells Fargo employees fra...



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Kimble Charting Solutions

Wilshire 5000 Creating A Triple Top? An Important Breakout Test Is In Play!

Courtesy of Chris Kimble.

The stock market has been on fire of late, rallying up to the edge of price resistance on several indexes. Today, we look at one of those stock market indexes: the Wilshire 5000.

The Wilshire 5000 tracks all of the stocks in the US market, so it is a broad-based index that carries significant importance when gauging the health of the overall US stock market.

Looking at the long-term “weekly” chart above, it is pretty clear that the index is at an important price juncture.

The Wilshire 5000 spent the last 25 years trading within a rising price channel (1)...



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Insider Scoop

Jefferies Upgrades Deere, Cites 'Significantly Improved Farmer Income Outlook'

Courtesy of Benzinga.

Farmer buying power will remain pressured for 2019, but this will change for the better next year and will help support Deere & Company (NYSE: DE), according to Jefferies.

The Analyst

Jefferies' Stephen Volkmann upgraded Deere from Hold to Buy with a price target lifted from $150 to $190....



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Chart School

Formula for when the Great Stock Market Rally ends

Courtesy of Read the Ticker.

When valuations for the boring water company or the boring electric company is trading like your Facebook, Apple, Amazon or Netflix or Google (ie FANG) you know something is wrong.

This is when a seriously over valued market is screaming at you.

Of course the reader must understand in a world where money printing goes super nuts (Zimbabwe style) the stock market may go hyper inflationary and picking a time frame for a top is never a good idea, but we are not there yet. There is no Ben Bernanke helicopter money to the masses yet (ie MMT). 

To see when water company's (and such like) are nearing the crazy FANG like valuations a review of the Dow Jones Utility Index channel shows us how history can repeat. The c...

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ValueWalk

The "Tesla Killer" Car Is Nowhere In Sight

 

The “Tesla Killer” Car Is Nowhere In Sight

By Jacob Wolinsky, ValueWalk

Here’s some catnip for the Tesla bulls on this email list: my analyst, Kevin DeCamp, a longtime TSLA shareholder and car owner, took a test drive of the Jaguar I-PACE and, while it “looks great and is fun to drive… it is lacking in a few areas where Tesla really shines.” He concludes that “Tesla may end up killing itself, but the “Tesla killer” car is nowhere in sight.”

The Tesla Killer Hasn’t Arrived Yet: My Test Drive of the Jaguar I-PACE

By Kevin DeCamp

As a long-time, devoted Tesla...



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Digital Currencies

Cryptocurrencies are finally going mainstream - the battle is on to bring them under global control

 

Cryptocurrencies are finally going mainstream – the battle is on to bring them under global control

The high seas are getting lower. dianemeise

Courtesy of Iwa Salami, University of East London

The 21st-century revolutionaries who have dominated cryptocurrencies are having to move over. Mainstream financial institutions are adopting these assets and the blockchain technology that enables them, in what ...



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Biotech

Consumer genetic testing customers stretch their DNA data further with third-party interpretation websites

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

 

Consumer genetic testing customers stretch their DNA data further with third-party interpretation websites

If you’ve got the raw data, why not mine it for more info? Sergey Nivens/Shutterstock.com

Courtesy of Sarah Catherine Nelson, University of Washington

Back in 2016, Helen (a pseudonym) took three different direct-to-consumer (DTC) genetic tests: AncestryDNA, 23andMe and FamilyTreeDNA. She saw genetic testing as a way...



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Members' Corner

Despacito - How to Make Money the Old-Fashioned Way - SLOWLY!

Are you ready to retire?  

For most people, the purpose of investing is to build up enough wealth to allow you to retire.  In general, that's usually enough money to reliably generate a year's worth of your average income, each year into your retirement so that that, plus you Social Security, should be enough to pay your bills without having to draw down on your principle.

Unfortunately, as the last decade has shown us, we can't count on bonds to pay us more than 3% and the average return from the stock market over the past 20 years has been erratic - to say the least - with 4 negative years (2000, 2001, 2002 and 2008) and 14 positives, though mostly in the 10% range on the positives.  A string of losses like we had from 2000-02 could easily wipe out a decades worth of gains.

Still, the stock market has been better over the last 10 (7%) an...



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Mapping The Market

It's Not Capitalism, it's Crony Capitalism

A good start from :

It's Not Capitalism, it's Crony Capitalism

Excerpt:

The threat to America is this: we have abandoned our core philosophy. Our first principle of this nation as a meritocracy, a free-market economy, where competition drives economic decision-making. In its place, we have allowed a malignancy to fester, a virulent pus-filled bastardized form of economics so corrosive in nature, so dangerously pestilent, that it presents an extinction-level threat to America – both the actual nation and the “idea” of America.

This all-encompassing mutant corruption saps men’s souls, crushes opportunities, and destroys economic mobility. Its a Smash & Grab system of ill-gotten re...



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OpTrader

Swing trading portfolio - week of September 11th, 2017

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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Promotions

Free eBook - "My Top Strategies for 2017"

 

 

Here's a free ebook for you to check out! 

Phil has a chapter in a newly-released eBook that we think you’ll enjoy.

In My Top Strategies for 2017, Phil's chapter is Secret Santa’s Inflation Hedges for 2017.

This chapter isn’t about risk or leverage. Phil present a few smart, practical ideas you can use as a hedge against inflation as well as hedging strategies designed to assist you in staying ahead of the markets.

Some other great content in this free eBook includes:

 

·       How 2017 Will Affect Oil, the US Dollar and the European Union

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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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