Archive for 2006

Weekly Wrap-Up

What a wacky, bumpy week that was!

We held firm to our new floors all week, withstood another run-up in oil and got wildly conflicting housing data on consecutive days. Tuesday it’s Bernanke’s first real chance to cause economic chaos so we’ll see how that goes if we can ignore Google long enough to pay attention.

The SOX came to life on Wednesday and saved the whole market from what may have been a Microsoft induced death but next week will be key as to whether we can follow through or not. I’ve already stuck my neck out and called Wednesday the day the Nasdaq 2,500 rally started (assuming it really does continue).

The Iran Oil Bourse didn’t trigger on schedule and the Mid-East markets are collapsing and we will see tomorrow if that has a ripple effect on other emerging markets. Of course it could all be part of the grand game of global rotation I called for at the beginning of the year but I am far to humble to believe that I can be that good of a prognosticator.

Look for Mid-East investors to flee to good old reliable gold as they worry about collapsing market values.

My best suggestion of the week was Monday’s observation that you should buy Google every night and sell it every morning. This strategy worked every single day but paid a very nice 10% bonus on Friday!

The Valero rule saved us from some very costly oil mistakes and could have made us a bunch on the plus side if I wasn’t so negative on oil (but there is just soooo much of it!).

Not to waste too much time looking forward, let’s review how we did (I think this was my worst week of the year!):


AAPL was by far the worst call of the week (even though, to be fair, I did say it was risky) with the $62.50s finishing at a woeful $2.10 (down 30%). It took a big bounce off $59 on Friday but I think it may still be searching for a bottom.

We are all waiting to see what AMAT will do but the $18 calls have already gone to .50 (up 40%).

I misjudged how strong the reaction to AMLN’s new diabetes drug would be, it jumped 5% on Friday with a very strong finish. This may make a momentum play for next…
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Special Report! Yahoo and the S&P

I wish this crummy Google blog program would let me post a chart but you can go to: to follow along with me. Mon 11/29/99 (18.5M) : Yahoo opens at $229 runs to $234 and closes down at $224 Tues 11/30/99 (24M): Opens at $223, goes down all day closes at $210 (Y2K paranoia?) S&P announces adjustment at night inclusion day will be 12/7 Wed 12/01/99 (52M): Opens at $230, runs to $234 but closes at $228! Thu 12/02/99 (39M): Opens at $230, up and down, closes $228 Fri 12/03/99 (40M): Opens at $249, runs to $258, close $253 So not much effect at first, people took advantage to exit (p/e 900, not everyone was an idiot) but on Friday it looks like they ran out of sellers. The volume went up 250% so it makes sense that you use up a week’s worth of sellers in 2 days… Notice the pop on Friday, this will be the sign we look for in Google but it will be a compressed timeframe! Mon 12/06/99 (64M): Open $253, up all day to $282! They didn’t have pre-markets then like we do now… Tues 12/07/99 (265M): Open $296, high $353, close $348!!! Fund managers aren’t all stupid, most did not want to wait until Friday. Weds 12/08/99 (99M): Open $324, drifts down to $319 Well these 99M are smarter than yesterday’s group! Thur 12/09/99 (45M): Open $319, high $341, close $340 Some laggards still gotta have it. Fri 12/10/99 (38M): Open $346, low $334, high $357, close $353 The people that left it until Friday got played! So we see that our best chance to get out is on the big volume day but, realistically, the 30% spike on Tues should have given you a clue. So with Google we are going to look for (and we only have 6 sessions) maybe 2 flat days and a big day on Tuesday or Wednesday. I’m picking up whatever calls are $1.50 or less on the dips so I have the $440 calls for $1.10 and the $430 calls for $1.50 so far. This is light buying until I get the impression they are out of sellers when I will probably double up at whatever cost once it clearly trends up. Google is a bigger percentage add to the S&P than Yahoo was at the time and there is nowhere near enough stock for…
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Frantic Friday

Was it only Wednesday that I said to take the GOOG Apr $370s for $6.70 as insurance against the May $310 puts for $10? Holy cow is that one going to be a jackpot. We may even get paid both ways, one on the way up as Funds frantically buy a shortage of Google shares and the longer one on the way down as the earnings miss drops the stock 100 points! This is a tough call but I think I’m going to half out the calls on today’s irrational exuberance, even thought it may go well over $400, I will just feel better taking the boatload of cash and having free Google options for a month. Other than the Nasdaq, which is artificially inflated by Googlemania, the other indexes don’t look so hot… Asia was mixed but Europe is up so we could/should end up with a good day but it will be market chaos as everyone watches Google all day. I find it stunningly irresponsible of the S&P to bring Google in right before earnings. Maybe they know something that I don’t but basically, if you invest in a fund that invests in the S&P then you are being forced to bail out anyone who wants to sell at this point prior to earnings! No only that but you get to ride Google all the way down as index funds don’t sell one of the components until they are delisted!!! Just ask anyone who was forced to by CNXT (1/28/00) for $100+, now $3.22… As near as I can figure, Google will be about 1% of the S&P 500 forcing about $10Bn of new money to flow(30M shares/3 days avg volume) into the company. While you may think that will only be good for 10% what will be interesting is how willing people are to part with their shares. The funds must buy and the more sellers hold out, the more they have to pay and the more they pay the bigger Google becomes in the index and the more they need… So there are 2 major possibilities 1 – The retailers that hold 100M shares are smart and don’t sell – driving the price back over $400 in short order 2 – The current fundholders take the opportunity to sell into the rally. If this happens (Google can’t break $400) then this stock is in terrible shape…
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Thrashing Thursday

That wasn’t very pretty but we held our lines so I’m very happy!

Oil up $2, the Fed looms its ugly head, the transports take a dive and all you can do is take the S&P down to 1,301? The Dow drops 46 pts when components GE (I know, I want to cry) drops 1%, FDX drops 2%, IBM drops 1.4%, MO drops .7%, MSFT drops 1%, PG drops 1.7%… I’m amazed the Dow didn’t drop 150! Other than HD, I don’t know which component was up!!!

So given that disaster, this was a great show of strength from the broader market.

Today was a great example of why we don’t short the builders! I keep saying it, they are too valuable to bet against… If your building stock wasn’t up 5% today, you should trade for one of the dozen who were. We will see if we get follow through tomorrow as new home sales are reported but I already bought my TOL $35s for $1.50.

Oil was way overdone today as a Nigerian company declared “force majeure” (cancelled contracts due to extenuating circumstances) due to the pipeline attacks a couple of weeks ago. Oil jumped $2 on the news which was really just the logical conclusion of what it already jumped on at the time of the attacks. What actually happened is some clever traders took advantage of what would have been a very slow day to buy up contracts on the release (which, as I said was known well in advance) which drove the prices up where they may stay for the weekend.

We may have to move fast on Monday but after missing one chance this week, I took a couple of short positions (BTU, SLB) already. I am also liking SUN and SU here.

Copper jumped up 3% today but gold stayed flat so you can tell global demand is still strong.

The strong resale numbers today ignited Fed fears (it’s always fear of something) and drove rates up which was the biggest damaging factor of the day as no one is buying $64 oil (see XOM’s chart).


CEPH was DENIED!!! OMG, I wish we could have taken the put but it was halted all day! We’ll see when they open it, hopefully they will wait until morning but don’t count on it.

PALM had a 36% revenue increase and a 20% earnings beat…
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Thursday Morning

I hope I’m not writing this in vain as I have been unable to post any comments all morning.

Asia is mixed, Europe is generally down a bit and our futures are down a bit too. Nothing worse looking than consolidation at the moment but there is disturbing news from China as they are blocking some US investments (payback for Unical?).

Let’s expect and be happy with a consolidation day today. All we ask is that we hold our new floors: S&P – 1,300, Dow – 11,200, Nasdaq – 2,300. As usual, it will be the Nasdaq that has the toughest time today and it is pretty much all up to Microsoft. After trading 146M shares yesterday you would think everyone who wants out got out but the company has 9Bn shares outstanding so it will take about a week to see what the major shareholders really think about the company. The big danger is a downgrade but, like Intel, this delay is a blip on a blip to the earnings and will only serve to make next year stronger.

We get an honest reading on energy supply today with the natural gas inventories. If nat gas is under $7 that is bad for CHK, ECA, BTU and especially ACI who are sitting right on their 200 dma of $69.50. If ACI breaks below, then all are good shorts.

Copper is flying up ($235) but other metals are flat and oil is attempting to rally above $62 – going into the weekend I don’t think we’ll be getting a downward move this week but let’s keep our eye on VLO as the volatility is now through the roof on this one. Copper is higher today than it was on 2/5 when PD flew to $81 (now at $72).

Gold meanwhile is off 4% since 1/31 but NEM, NAK and ABX are down 25% – this will be a great play if gold turns back up but, like I said previously, silver is sucking up all the gold money at the moment.

Since I was so right about fund activity yesterday I’ll go out on a limb and say that today you will see a lot of the laggards being picked up, look for slow movers in strong sectors to suddenly get a lift.


YHOO finally broke away from tracking Google yesterday which is huge so I’m liking the May…
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What Me Worry Wednesday Wrap-Up

Wowie! That was some day. If you have to look back in a few months and see where the turning point was that led to Dow 13,000 and Nasdaq 2,500 then today would be the day you can point to!

The strong Nasdaq recovery caught everyone off guard, especially as it punched through and closed above 2,300. The Dow zoomed right over 11,300 while the S&P poped right back over 1,300 like it was very comfortable there. All huge!

The SOX are still bugging me with TXN down a touch and AAPL not able to hold nice morning gains. AMAT was a very late mover but SNDK was strong all day. MU got whacked 3% and didn’t recover but AMD recovered from 2% down so maybe the mail is just slow getting to Micron or maybe the LEXR acquisition is worrying people there. CY, of course, went up!

AAPL is now officially baffling me. I don’t know who’s selling it or why but sell it they do, every single day, into every rally… I hate to say it but the 200 dma is $57.50 and if we don’t hold $60 I think that’s where it’ll end up.

Oil got jacked up again at the end of the day to finish at $62.04. As I noted in comments this morning, I apologize for continuing to refer to oil at $60 after the rollover which put it back to $62. So the new line to hold on oil is $62 and it was amazing to watch how much effort was put into it this afternoon! Natural gas could not recover $7, finishing just below with gas inventories out tomorrow.

Unlike oil, gas is produced almost entirely on this continent so you get a more honest view of supply from gas than you do from oil. I missed a huge short opportunity today as I left all fed up with the oil drawdown not remembering why I recommended TOPT on the 13th – they are making more money because people are redirecting tankers that were on route to the US!

So of course we had a drawdown. As the detailed data came out it turns out we imported 1M barrels a day less than last week! It’s a long slow process but it all backs up somewhere eventually and then the prices have to drop. VLO traders saw this at 1pm but I…
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Worrying Wednesday

Oh dear, now Microsoft has done it! This is the Nasdaq version of a bomb being dropped… The Vista operating system is being delayed again!

Bad for PC makers, bad for software makers, bad for retailers like BBY who will miss a lot of holiday sales…

The World markets are down across the board and the US futures don’t look so hot.

Microsoft is a Dow component as well as a Nasdaq component and, of course, an S&P component and will likely be down about 3%, back to the 50 dma at $27. Whether or not it goes below will be the test of the day but, on the whole this one quarter pushback presents another buying opportunity for Microsoft (remember what happened to SNE last week on their delay?).

Like I said yesterday the Nasdaq needs to test 2,285 before it can head back up, below that and it will probably drag the other indices with it.

Oil will get a big test today as well as it sits just above $60 on inventory day. Remember, we often get an opposite reaction just after inventory to shake out the suckers so be very careful!

Mortgage applications were abysmal last month so bad for housing, bad for lenders

Zacks, actually holds analysts accountable by ranking them. It turns out none of the highly ranked analysts work for major firms! Here’s a good article on analysts:

If I were a fund and I thought this was a real rally, I would be buying today. In a bull move, you are very lucky to get sector moving news like Microsoft’s that give you a chance to scoop up things you missed so we’ll see what really happens today.

Good article today in IBD so you know it’s not just me denouncing buy and hold strategies:


Speaking of bad analysis. MS earnings today will be greatly affected by layoff expenses and stock options so the numbers will look like a miss but but are actually be very good. This could be a great buy opportunity but even GS has pulled back from spectacular earnings so I wouldn’t take it as any more than a day trade if at all. MS is sitting right on its 50 dma of $60 so it will have a hard time going down and the $60s are pretty expensive at $1.70
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Testy Tuesday Wrap-Up

In the comments we were discussing whether or not this was an ugly day. The bottom line is that we had a fairly mild pullback off multi-year highs. After 6 up sessions and one flat from 10,970 to 11,300 the Dow pulled back 40 points today. The S&P took a more alarming turn under 1,300 but you can’t fall too in love with those whole numbers as it is still sitting just above its prior turning points of 1,294 and 1,297 in its last 2 runs at 1,300. The Nasdaq is still the biggest concern and looks like it will test the 50 dma at 2,285 before it can get serious about moving up. Oil rebounded sharply after drifting below $60 in the morning but there was clearly no downtrend in Valero, XOM which generally trended up into a very nice spike at 12:10 when it would have been a great time to hit the shorts! The last time there was this much oil stockpiled in the US was 7 years ago when the POO was on its way down from $40 to the low $20s. Assuming we have 5% annual inflation over that time you could say oil is actually worth about $45 or less and everything else is a pure fear premium. This was not a day to be greedy and this is not a time in the market to be greedy. If you can’t watch a trade, at least put in a sell order at a 20% profit. If we are going back to last year’s rangy trading, the longer you hold a stock the worse you returns will be! Google is remaining in its $340 to $350 channel but there was an intense battle to hold $340 at the end of the day that may have been lost by whoever was trying to support it. Expect it to be bid back up a few dollars in the after hours so they can start the cycle again in the morning. You can thank Congress, not the President, for the worst news of the day which is Dubai, in what looks like payback for the port debacle, holding off on a $1.2Bn purchase of a military equipment maker. This is not good, we “import” $4Bn every day to finance our massive deficit and a good portion of that comes in the form of deals like this. This…
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Testing Tuesday

Bernanke spoke last night and we are unlikely to hear from him again until the official meeting next Tuesday. Ben managed to say that interest rates may be too high, unless they are too low – this was not very helpful to anyone and the markets, lacking a clear signal that many thought would come, may have a tough day. Now we need to test what we hope are our new floors: Dow 11,250, S&P 1,300 and Nasdaq 2,300. Oracle’s net jumped 42% but sales were off slightly from expectations (still up 18%) and the stock sold off – this does not happen in hot markets! Europe is down across the board as is Asia except the Nikkei, which tacked on another 285 pts, now back on a bull run where it should break 17,000. Why is Japan doing so well? No oil companies dragging down the markets! The Chinese raised fuel taxes this morning in order to cut consumption. Advanced knowledge of this may have been one of the reasons for yesterday’s decline. It’s all about tomorrow’s inventory report now but this kind of sell-off means an upside surprise is more likely. Toug to play oil in this market but below $60 will give us plenty of short opportunities so I’ll make a list below. ====================================== DELL got a good report and, as I’ve said in the past, can’t go any lower (than $29) so this could be a good time to get the $30s for just .60. GLW has a “secret” new type of glass that is almost ready to go and, whatever it is, I like this company enough to buy on the rumor. I’m going to take the May $30 for $1. OLED tested a bottom nicely yesterday but I’m too nervous about the pre-Fed market to commit just yet. ===================================== Oil Plays – Only if oil opens and stays below $60!!! Valero Rule, Valero Rule, Valero Rule. Did I mention you should follow the Valero Rule? Well you should! Today is an easy day as anything over $60 means don’t short or get out if you are short. Manipulated or not, this may not be the week they are going to let oil slide and you could be very sorry! The entire oil patch is still higher than it was last Tuesday although oil itself is down 8% so there is a lot of room…
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Monday Mop-Up

Hmmm, weird day.

On the one hand it was very good. The homebuilders and the oil sector was a catastrophe yet the Dow didn’t crash but it did make what looked very much like a topping motion, just saying no to 11,300. The S&P seemed to feel the same about 1,310 while the Nasdaq looked determined to catch up but remained shy of Thursday’s stopper of 2,320.

We are still having trouble with our SOX without which we have a barefoot Nasdaq rally where we can expect to stub our toe:

Still it looks like rotation, money comes out of one stock and goes into another – works for me! Money also went out of retail investors accounts and into funds who dumped Google shares as fast as retail shoppers would buy them:

Oil dove today which really pissed me off because I wasn’t ready to short yet so I missed gems like SUN (-5%), SU (-3%), BTU (-2.7%), CHK (-4.5%). Yep, all our usual suspects dropped like a rock and I wasn’t there for it – c’est la vie! Bottom line is the supply demand picture finally outweighed the fear factor as this week’s inventory should clearly show oil builds at a 7 year high! This 3.5% one day drop is the penalty THEY pay for artificially supporting the price all last week!!!

Tomorrow is now a critical day for oil as $62 is the 200 dma so we could have another major drop tomorrow if we can get a slight downtrend.

Gold remains calm so things must not be so bad but I’m still concerned with a lack of clear leadership as more than half the stocks finished in the red today.

I will keep saying it until I am so wrong it’s silly but last March the Dow was at 10,984 and people were buying like crazy and 2 weeks later we were at 10,000, not to hit 10,900 again until November. So let’s be careful out there!


Even with the death of oil, our old pals at TOPT continue to head higher! Now at $18 (up 10% since Monday) as they declare yet another special dividend of $2.50…

Now you are missing something with MSFT! This is the first of our sleeping giants to awaken and they pulled the Nasdaq up with a .39 gain knocking…
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Zero Hedge

Johns Hopkins, Bristol-Myers Face $1 Billion Suit For Infecting Guatemalan Hookers With Syphilis 

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

A federal judge in Maryland said Johns Hopkins University, pharmaceutical company Bristol-Myers Squibb and the Rockefeller Foundation must face a $1 billion lawsuit over their roles in a top-secret program in the 1940s ran by the US government that injected hundreds of Guatemalans with syphilis, reported Reuters.

Several doctors from Hopkins an...

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Phil's Favorites

This Is The One Chart Every Trader Should Have "Taped To Their Screen"

Courtesy of Zero Hedge

After a year of tapering, the Fed’s balance sheet finally captured the market’s attention during the last three months of 2018.

By the start of the fourth quarter, the Fed had finished raising the caps on monthly roll-off of its balance sheet to the full $50bn per month (peaking at $30bn USTs, $20bn MBS, although on many months the (balance sheet) B/S does not actually shrink by this full amount which depends on the redemption schedule) and by end-Q4 markets also experienced some of the largest volatility and drawdowns in nearly a decade.

As Nomura&...

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The Competition For Capital Has Made Stocks Cheap

By Michelle Jones. Originally published at ValueWalk.

The new year is upon us, and now is the time many investors look at what 2018 was and prepare for what 2019 might be. Recession jitters are starting to pick back up again, especially now that the full picture of 2018 is in the books. But what if you could pick only one theme for 2018? Jefferies strategist Sean Darby and team have a suggestion which is especially timely given that it appears to mark the end of an era.

StockSnap / PixabayVolatility carries into the new year

This past year was one of extremes, and the markets ended i...

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Kimble Charting Solutions

Stock declines did not break 9-year support, says Joe Friday

Courtesy of Chris Kimble.

We often hear “Stocks take an escalator up and an elevator down!” No doubt stocks did experience a swift decline from the September highs to the Christmas eve lows. Looks like the “elevator” part of the phrase came true as 2018 was coming to an end.

The first part of the “stocks take an escalator up” seems to still be in play as well despite the swift decline of late.

Joe Friday Just The Facts Ma’am- All of these indices hit long-term rising support on Christmas Eve at each (1), where support held and rallies have followed.

If you find long-term perspectives helpf...

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Digital Currencies

Transparency and privacy: Empowering people through blockchain


Transparency and privacy: Empowering people through blockchain

Blockchain technologies can empower people by allowing them more control over their user data. Shutterstock

Courtesy of Ajay Kumar Shrestha, University of Saskatchewan

Blockchain has already proven its huge influence on the financial world with its first application in the form of cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin. It might not be long before its impact is felt everywhere.

Blockchain is a secure chain of digital records that exist on multiple computers simultaneously so no record can be erased or falsified. The...

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Insider Scoop Explores Strategic Alternatives, Analyst Sees Possible Sale Price Around $30 Per Share

Courtesy of Benzinga.

Related 44 Biggest Movers From Yesterday 38 Stocks Moving In Wednesday's Mid-Day Session ... more from Insider

Chart School

Weekly Market Recap Jan 13, 2019

Courtesy of Blain.

In last week’s recap we asked:  “Has the Fed solved all the market’s problems in 1 speech?”

Thus far the market says yes!  As Guns n Roses preached – all we need is a little “patience”.  Four up days followed by a nominal down day Friday had the market following it’s normal pattern the past nearly 30 years – jumping whenever the Federal Reserve hints (or essentially says outright) it is here for the markets.   And in case you missed it the prior Friday, Chairman Powell came back out Thursday to reiterate the news – so…so… so… patient!

Fed Chairman Jerome Powell reinforced that message Thursday during a discussion at the Economic Club of Washington where he said that the central bank will be “fle...

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Members' Corner

Why Trump Can't Learn


Bill Eddy (lawyer, therapist, author) predicted Trump's chaotic presidency based on his high-conflict personality, which was evident years ago. This post, written in 2017, references a prescient article Bill wrote before Trump even became president, 5 Reasons Trump Can’t Learn. ~ Ilene 

Why Trump Can’t Learn

Donald Trump by Gage Skidmore (...

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Opening Pandora's Box: Gene editing and its consequences

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


Opening Pandora's Box: Gene editing and its consequences

Bacteriophage viruses infecting bacterial cells , Bacterial viruses. from

Courtesy of John Bergeron, McGill University

Today, the scientific community is aghast at the prospect of gene editing to create “designer” humans. Gene editing may be of greater consequence than climate change, or even the consequences of unleashing the energy of the atom.


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Mapping The Market

Trump: "I Won't Be Here" When It Blows Up

By Jean-Luc

Maybe we should simply try him for treason right now:

Trump on Coming Debt Crisis: ‘I Won’t Be Here’ When It Blows Up

The president thinks the balancing of the nation’s books is going to, ultimately, be a future president’s problem.

By Asawin Suebsaeng and Lachlan Markay, Daily Beast

The friction came to a head in early 2017 when senior officials offered Trump charts and graphics laying out the numbers and showing a “hockey stick” spike in the nationa...

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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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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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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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