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Monday Market Movement – Down for a Change

Wheeeeeee!

What a ride we're getting (see Bespoke Charts).  We discussed the fun that led up to this drop on Friday, so no need to rehash it here.  Over the weekend, Philstockworld reviewed "This Month in Fascism" and I put up a post outlining "Capitalism's End Game" where we had some nice additional discussion in that post's Member Chat so read that an you're all up to speed.  

That brings us to what is happening now.  There was little news this weekend other than inflation accelerating in China, with their CPI hitting 3.6% in March vs 3.3% expected but that number is BS anyway as food alone is up 7.5%.  For the Quarter, the CPI was up 3.8% overall and China's target for the year is 4% so this effectively takes stimulus action off the table for now.  The ONLY thing keeping CPI lower is the now-steady price of housing, which is down at 2% but that's still 2% higher than prices the Government has already decided the people can no longer afford.  

China is clearly slowing down but STILL having inflation.  The WSJ points out that China's iron-ore demand is down and other emerging-market economies also appear to be losing steam with India's growth down to 6.1% and Brazil down to 3% with Russia having almost no growth at all.  So much for the BRICs…  "Year-to-date returns have been quite deceptive. All that really happened in 2012 is a typically powerful bear-market bounce off 2011 lows," said Michael Shaoul, chairman of Marketfield Asset Management.   

We've been hanging onto long-term short EDZ positions in anticipation of a sell-off in the emerging markets and, despite $25.6Bn of net inflows in Q1 (the most since 2006), EEM has gone nowhere since the end of January, which is funny, since only $1.7Bn flowed into the US stock market in Q1 yet our indexes are up 10% – but that's a different article!

Anyway, so EDZ is still at $12.79 and if we figure we get a 10% pullback in the Emerging Markets then EDZ pops 30% to $16.62 and you can buy the May $14/16 bull call spread for .40 with a 400% upside at $16 and we used to like to cover those with CHL but CHL has flown up to $54 and no longer cheap so I'm thinking FCX is a nice, bullish offset as copper is pretty low and FCX is a nice long-term hold anyway.  You can sell FCX Aug $26 puts (31% off) for .42 to offset the cost of the hedge or you can sell just one 2014 $28 put (26% off) for $3.70 and offset the cost of 9 of the hedges.  

Speaking of emerging markets (or markets that are attempting to emerge), the NYTimes had a great article this weekend on the US economy titled "Still Crawling Out of a Very Deep Hole" and I think the Chart on the right pretty much says it all.  

How are we gong to recover when the average American family LOST $122,000 of home equity since 2006?  What's going to happen when these people have to retire?  How can we possibly believe our Financial Sector is in good shape when they have $11Tn worth of loans outstanding on these homes?  Clearly, if we see another leg forming down in housing – RUN!  A 20% drop in home prices from here would wipe out ALL of the remaining equity in the US housing market – $8.5Tn and THEN you will see people rioting in the streets (good for TASR!).

"We are right back where we were two years ago. I would put money on 2012 being a bigger year for foreclosures than 2010," said Mark Seifert, executive director of Empowering & Strengthening Ohio's People (ESOP), a counseling group with 10 offices in Ohio.  

The Chicago Herald says more than half of adults nationwide – 56 percent – have no budget and one-third don’t pay all of their bills on time.  39 percent carry over credit card debt from month to month; two in five are saving less than they were a year ago and 39 percent have no day-to-day savings.  Do these sound like the Consumers that are going to drive the Global recovery in 2012?  

Globally, the Economic Collapse blog has "19 Signs of Very Serious Economic Trouble on the Horizon" while Zero Hedge gave the recovery to date a very poor grade on their "Recession Report Card."  As Stock World Weekly aptly summarized this weekend:  "While we have been willing to turn more bullish when justifiable, we see little reason to do so now. We think it’s more likely that the market is in a topping pattern."  I'm sorry, I'm not trying to be depressing but, in scouring the news trying to find reasons to be bullish – this is the reality that we find…

As John Mauldin pointed out this weekend – "It's All About Jobs" and we just aren't creating enough of them and Robert Reich points out that while It’s way too early to conclude the jobs recovery is stalling, but there’s reason for concern:

Remember: Consumer spending is 70 percent of the economy. Employers won’t hire without enough sales to justify the additional hires. It’s up to consumers to make it worth their while.  But real spending (adjusted to remove price changes) this year hasn’t been going anywhere. It increased just 0.5 percent in February after an anemic 0.2 percent increase in January.

The reason consumers aren’t spending more is they don’t have the money. Personal income was up just 0.2 percent in February – barely enough to keep up with inflation. As a result, personal saving as a percent of disposable income tumbled to 3.7 percent in February from 4.3 percent in January.  Personal saving is now at its lowest level since March 2009.

American consumers, in short, are hitting a wall. They don’t dare save much less because their jobs are still insecure. They can’t borrow much more. Their home values are still dropping, and many are underwater – owing more on their homes than the homes are worth.

Before we run in and buy the dips – let's see what's real in this market.  With Europe closed and China closed this morning – there shouldn't be much volume and it will be hard to determine what's real but, on the whole, we're doing exactly what we thought we would do at the end of March – only it's April 9th instead.  

Isn't it funny that this just so happens to be the week that our Treasury needs to sell $66Bn worth of notes?  I just love these monthly coincidences – so much so that we left those 10 TLT $110 calls naked ($2.52 basis) on Friday in our $25,000 portfolio and, of course, we have our 10 TLT $110/111 bull call spreads in our $5,000 portfolio – 5 of which we added last Tuesday and mentioned in the Wednesday morning post, when they were still .55.  

How many other newsletters give you trades that make 81% in ten days?  


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  1. Oil Lines

    R3 – 103.15
    R2 – 102.85
    R1 – 102.47
    PP – 102.17
    S1 – 101.79
    S2 – 101.49
    S3 – 101.11


  2. Good Morning!   Before getting onto actual trading stuff, I have a banking/IRS question.  Is there a banker out there?   What is the present law requiring deposits or withdrawals of certain amounts of  $ to be reported to IRS.  I believe it's > $10,000 is to be reported.  But many people I know have this amount or more deposited every week or two, as their paycheck.  Is this all tracked by IRS?  The reason I ask is that I'm doing some gifting to family members, and each gift could be as much as 13k.   Will the IRS come on board with all these transactions and start tracking these people's bank accounts?   Very curious. 


  3. It looks like some positions in our portfolios will show some nice improvement since morning – FAS looks to open around $100. USO might be below $39 and VXX close to $19.

    This could be a sustained move so probably no need to close the positions, but we should also be careful to protect the gains as well.


  4. And for Jabo's sake, it looks like even PCLN and CMG will open lower this morning. Probably a temporary aberration though….


  5. iflantheman- the $10,000 applies only to cash as there is no record. Thus $9,999 does not need to be reported. Institutions have been told if they suspect money laundrying or hiding ( $9,000 every week) they should also report it. This obviously also includes brokers, credit unions, etc


  6. PP for today:


  7. iflan—-I have gifted but I make it two gifts equaling 13k  max allowed per person—that way it is under $10k per transaction—fwiw


  8. lflantheman
    I am not a banker but come across this problem often.
    Any deposit at one day more than 10k you need to fill in a special reporting form. So make two payments 9.999.00 and the next day 3k and you have no problem


  9. 50 Amazing Numbers about our economy:

    http://www.fool.com/investing/general/2012/04/05/50-amazing-numbers-about-todays-economy-.aspx

    Barry's favorite:

     

    50. The S&P 500 is down 3% from 2000. But a version of the index that holds all 500 companies in equal amounts (rather than skewed by market cap) is up nearly 90%.

    40. In 2009, 5% of Americans accounted for 50% of all health care costs.

    39. As the market was “flat” from 2000 to 2010, S&P 500 companies paid out more than $2 trillion in dividends.

    29. The average vehicle on the road today is 10.8 years old — an all-time high, and two years older than in 2000.

    28. Just five companies, Apple (AAPL), Microsoft (MSFT), Cisco, (CSCO) Google (GOOG), andPfizer (PFE), now hold nearly one-quarter of all corporate cash, equal to more than a quarter-trillion dollars.

    21Netflix (NFLX) is now responsible for about one-third of all Internet bandwidth.

    12. For the first time since 1949, the U.S. is now a net exporter of fuel products like gasoline and diesel.

    11. The period from March 2009 to March 2012 was one of the strongest three-year market rallies in history — stronger, in fact, than the 1996-1999 bull market.

    2. As the economy tanked in 2009, the top 25 hedge fund managers collectively earned $25.3 billion. On average, that works out to about $2,000 a minute for each manager.

    I'll add:

    36. The share of entitlements like Social Security and Medicare going to the bottom fifth of households (based on income) has fallen from 54% in 1979 to 36% in 2007, according to Binyamin Appelbaum of The New York Times.

    3. The combined assets of Wal-Mart's (NYSE: WMT  ) Walton family is equal to that of the bottom 150 million Americans.

    Good stuff in there for your posts Phil!


  10. Significant earnings this week:

    The number behind the slash is what the stock has done since the last earning report.


  11. And the calendar for the week:


  12. lflantheman   Your question asked about $.  The law you thinking of applies to cash, not checks.  You can write all of the checks over $10K you want.  In fact, if you were gifting to family members, I would do so by check and mark on the check that it is a gift.


  13. iflan – My family has employed a gifting strategy for decades (always at the max allowed by law, currently the 13K you reference).  There is ZERO indication that the IRS has tapped any bank accounts.  The methods have been checks and wire transfers.  There has never been an issue and we've never filled out any forms for anyone.


  14. Gd morning,

    Finally got on board PSW. Don’t have much to say for now, as I’m taking it all in. Just happy to be here!

    Mike…


  15. Over the last year or so, gap down have given us a lower close on average:

    http://www.bespokeinvest.com/thinkbig/2012/4/9/largest-negative-gap-since-march-6th.html

    Might want to be careful if you want to fade it!


  16. lflan — if it's a gift, it doesn't matter if they track it, or not, if it's $13,000 or less.  It has no tax consequences.  So, you may as well just write a check.  Hi Savi!


  17. Thanks to everyone for the gifting questions.   Now we'll see how the market opens………..



  18. I guess we should have been a bit more aggressive selling premium here… 



  19. Hi esc—is your daughter in DC?


  20. The TLT spreads are at 92% of potential max with 11 days to go.


  21. AAPL port:  I bought to close the 50 May 650 calls for 22.05


  22. Savi — no, she decided on a university in Oregon.  Thanks for asking!  Are you short the /CL this morning?


  23. anyone going to buy the dip this morning for a scalp or daytrade?


  24. MNI’s U.S. capital goods indicator fell 1.4 points
    in the April 6 period to 45.5, further below 50 to indicate slightly
    deeper contraction in year-on-year business activity, according to the
    results of Market News International’s weekly survey released Monday.
    Year-on-year results are all at roughly two-year lows including
    sales at +2.3% and income at -29%. The period’s sample size is 200
    companies.
    For nondefense capital goods shipments in the first quarter, MNI’s
    sample is pointing to no significant sequential change from the fourth
    quarter’s recovery low rate of +0.3%.
    Weakening demand in Europe and slowing demand in China are commonly
    cited as major headwinds as is the year-on-year currency effect which is
    at -1.0% for sales vs +4.0% in the fourth quarter.


  25. good morning Iflan
    last week you mentioned you were quick trading some APPL options not within your 50k port.
    Could you comment to what  you were trading? weeklies or monthlies and strikes?
    Detail in/out not necessary just would like to see what you were thinking about last week.

    thanks much as I am making a nice profit from your guidance-- just not in the numbers you are posting:)


  26. Morning All – I am seeing another "P-Bar" on the dow.  These seem to happen more and more.


  27. Woohooo…. Profits!

    The TLT calls and 1/2 the USO puts are doubles so we are careful with that money in our pocket! SCO and VXX also doing well.

    It's a good thing we have the XRT calls to protect our BBY puts…     :-)


  28. Good morning! 

    Lots of fun and excitement today.  775 is still our goal on the RUT for the sell-off but let's not forget that, rather than stop out our perfectly good short positions on a bounce, we can add longs off significant bounce lines like RUT 800 (now 805 but 800.50 in the /TF Futures) and IWM Weekly $77s at $3.30 have just .10 of premium so they are a good way to play momentum if you can't play the Futures to offset.  

    Keep in mind these are just bounce plays off the line – we don't expect to win at all so quick exits with tiny profits are all we need.  As it is, at the moment, I don't see any reason for RUT futures to stay over 800 at all.  

    The VIX shot up to 18.83 so congrats to all the VXX players (finally!) and we'll keep an eye on that to see if we're going to get a turn.

    The Dollar is at 80.20 and 80.15 is where we need to hold. Euro is $1.305 and if they can't get back over $1.31 they are in big trouble.  Pound is $1.585 and blowing $1.58 would be bad and the Yen is super-strong again at 81.30 and that's dropped the Nikkei down to 9,555.

    Oil is $101.40 and should get bought back up to $102 or they are in deep trouble with about 10 days to go before contract expirations and gold bounced up to test $1,650 but I expect them to be rejected there and test $1,600 so (/YG) is a fun short off that $1,650 line.  

    I do like that EDZ trade idea in the above post – if we are heading lower, EEM should fade out and, if not, FXI should come back.  

    At the open: Dow -1.08% to 12920. S&P -1.32% to 1380. Nasdaq +0.4% to 3081.

    Treasurys: 30-year +0.26%. 10-yr +0.11%. 5-yr 0%.

    Commodities: Crude -1.97% to $101.28. Gold +0.92% to $1645.15.

    Currencies: Euro -0.32% vs. dollar. Yen -0.37%. Pound +0.12%.

    Market preview: As Europe enjoys a day off for Easter Monday, U.S. stock futures fall following Friday's disappointing jobs report, with the S&P benchmark -1.1%. AOL soars a rather dizzying 35% on a $1B+ patent deal with Microsoft (-0.9%), whose own shares yawn. Avon -3.9% after naming a new top ladyLater: Employment Trends Index, Bernanke.

    Treasury prices add to big gains seen Friday morning following the employment report. The long bond tacks on another quarter point, with the yield dropping 3 bps to 3.19%. The 10-year yield is threatening a one-handle again, dropping 2.6 bps to 2.03%.TLT +2.3% premarket. A favorite of the shorts, TBT -4.7% premarket.

    No need to wait until May, writes Doug Kass, sell stocks now. The economy is slowing and the likely return to power of Obama and a Republican Congress (at least the House) means gridlock in D.C. Remember, the default scenario for 2013 is a large fiscal contraction (also pointed out by Alan Blinder).

    Feb. Chicago Fed Midwest Manufacturing Index:+1.0%, at a seasonally adjusted level of 91.7 (2007 = 100). Regional output +10.1% Y/Y, national output +5.4%. 

    "What we've observed in the employment figures is not recovery, but desperation," writes John Hussman. Of the 1.84M gain in payrolls since the recession's "end," 2.96M jobs have gone to workers 55+, while employment for those under 55 has shrunk by 1.12M. By shorting savers of interest income and promoting repeated booms/busts – but no durable returns – "the Fed has successfully provoked job growth of the obligatory, low-wage variety."

    In Dallas, officials have enough funds left for jobless training to support only 43 people, while 23,500 have lost their jobs in the last ten weeks alone. The same story is playing out all over the U.S. as federal funding for training dries up.

    Big U.S. companies are coming back from the recessionleaner and stronger, but are increasingly looking abroad to fill their payrolls. The WSJ has an overview, including a breakdown by company.

    Q1 earnings season is due to kick off tomorrow when Alcoa (AA) reports its results, with analysts forecasting that average results will be flat to slightly lower, although growth is expected to pick up later this year and in 2013. Just three of the S&P's 10 major sectors – industrials, financials and technology – are expected to show expansion.

    The U.K. recovery from the recession has been mostly average, finds the St. Louis Fed – with 2 exceptions. One is Employment, where growth has been about the worst seen. The other is Real Government Spending, which has seen the greatest increase of any post-recession period – what would that look like without the vaunted fiscal austerity of the last 2 years? 

    Greek February industrial production falls 8.3% Y/Y after a 6% January decline. The country, however, had a bit less of an inflation burden, CPI dropping to 1.7% from 2.1%. The IP drop calls into question of whether the country can meet the EU's forecast of just 4.7% GDP contraction in 2012.

    Greece Deputy Defense Minister Yiannis Ragousis resigns over a proposal to award the 5 major parties €30M in taxpayer money (beyond what they already get) ahead of upcoming elections. - I love political systems where people of conscience are forced to leave so just the crooks remain!

    Talks between Iran, the U.S. and other world powers are set to restart in Turkey on Saturday, when the allies will push Iran to end its high-level uranium enrichment and close a facility built deep into a mountain. However, Iran rejected the demands, with Mahmoud Ahmadinejad declaring that "the nuclear industry is like a locomotive" that must continue.

    Employers are facing increasing pension contributions, as union-managed funds have a massive $369B shortfall, Credit Suisse has calculated. With plans only 52%-funded, much of the burden could fall on small and midsize firms, although seven S&P 500 companies, including Safeway (SWY) and UPS (UPS), have major liabilities.

    Banks may have been a drag on earnings for the S&P 500 during 2010, but they're expected to be more profitable in 2012 than during the bubble years. Or not. Margins might be rising but ROE was 7.05% in Q4 vs. 12% five years ago. The divergence is partly due to banks' revenue being -30% vs. 2007, while they also hold far more capital. (see also

    Shares of AOL roar 26.1% higher premarket after the company announces a patent deal with Microsoft. The firm says that itwill return a significant portion of the sales proceeds to shareholders.

    Apple (AAPL) investors need to take a breather, says BTIG, downgrading the stock to Neutral from Buy, despite its expectations for another consensus-destroying quarter. Topping concerns is the sustainability of the iPhone price ($600) given the post-paid wireless industry's plan to slow the pace of phone upgrades. Shares -1.4%premarket.


  29. TODAY, APRIL 9, 2012

    8:19 AM ET

    Priceline.com Started At Outperform By Pacific Crest >PCLN
    Dow Jones


  30. esc--went back and forth--now out and watching


  31. Up to date level chart – the NYSE fails the Must Hold line:

    The RUT is not that far….


  32. Good morning from the French suburbs,

     

    IWM     79.10,  79.29,  79.52,  79.82,  80.05,  80.33,  80.56,  80.81,  81.04,  81.41,  81.64,  81.94

     

    Also, I have trend line support at IWM 79.76

     

    Bonne chasse !!


  33. AAPL for everybody… The appeal of fast money is irresistible:

    http://www.thereformedbroker.com/2012/04/09/the-amazing-apple-effect/

    Apple of course was the big story. The effect this stock has had is amazing.. The weighting of Apple in the Russell 1000 Growth Index started the year at 5.81%. At the end of this quarter, the weight in the index had grown to 7.72%. A year ago Apple had a 4.57% weighting in the index. It seems like every mutual fund owns shares of the tech firm. According to the WSJ, 788 US stock funds own shares, and it is the largest holding in 465 of those funds. On average, large cap funds own 5.5% in their portfolios. At least 50 small & mid cap funds own it, as does the Blackrock High Yield Bond fund, and three Fidelity Europe focused stock funds.

    Managers are willing to go outside of their fund "specialty" to get a piece of the action.


  34. NYSE blew 8,000 – that's not good!  RUT still hanging on to 800 but not in the futures – generally ugly out there, even with the Dollar diving to test 80.15. 

    Surprisingly low volume this morning – 21.6M on the Dow at 9:57 – certainly this is not capitulation just yet.  

    Entitlements/StJ – I wish someone would calculate the total contributions made by the bottom 80% vs what they've taken out vs the top 20% and 10% vs what they've taken out.  Of course, the government's total mishandling of the money for the past 40 years has simply screwed everyone.  

    Good calendars StJ.  

    Welcome 53787!  You can change that you know…

    CNBC says we're over-emphasizing employment report!  Wow, they are shameless…  Of course you can tell that "THEY" are pulling out the stops to goose us while they can – Dollar below 80.15 now (80.13) – let's see if they can keep it down.  Not helping oil or gold so far and copper at lows at $3.72.  


  35. Phil – Is GLL interesting with the jump in gold?


  36. Lets see if the markets rally around the time European markets close (closed today)…that would be comical.


  37. FAS Money – Let's buy back those weekly $106s (.78) and sell 2 April $90 puts for $1.55 ($310) and hope for a bounce to sell some calls again.  

    IWM Money – I don't see TNA coming back but let's put a stop on one at $1.50 and the other at $2 in case I'm wrong.  

    $5KP – May as well ask for .95 on TLT in case we get it and we're fine on GLL but DMND is a disaster so far.  

    $25KP:

    • DMND – Same old, same old….
    • XRT – $59.98 – Hallelujah!  Don't you just love reality?  
    • BBY – I still like them at this price but no hurry.
    • SCO – Looking good.  
    • SQQQ – Getting better. 
    • FAS – I have to analyze them again later but seems OK.
    • TLT – Gotta take that money and run on the April $110s ($5.55) just irresponsible not to.  
    • VXX – I'm worried about them, let's cash our April $15 calls at $3.90 and put a $2 stop on the short $18 calls and a $3 stop $21 short puts.  So, on the whole, I'm sick of the VIX and glad to be rid of them.  
    • GLL – May is fine
    • USO – We might see $98.50.  
    • PCLN – F them!  
    • DDM – Let's buy back the $71 calls for .23 and see what happens (the longs are May).  

     

     


  38. Welcome to capitalism China…

    http://ftalphaville.ft.com/blog/2012/04/09/952211/avoiding-a-first-ever-corporate-default-in-china/

     

    Shandong Helon! We told you to remember the name.

    Either this indebted fibre company would default on a RMB400m ($63m) bond coming due on April 15 – thus becoming the first domestic corporate default in Chinese history, and so maybe a sign of a maturing bond market – or it wouldn’t. Shandong Helon could simply get a local government bailout or a bank loan refinancing instead, under the ‘old’ rules of the game in China.


  39. Cue AAPL going Positive on the day in 3…2….


  40. in charleston golfing..  normal pattern in play so far….opening swoon….aggressive dip buying..aapl down a whole 2 points..ha!..


  41. I can't get into this website until few minutes ago, anyone else?


  42. HOW AND WHY THE F-CK IS PCLN UP TODAY???


  43. IWM Money – Someone spiked these TNA calls to over $1.50 in the last minute! I guess having hard stops on these is dangerous.


  44. AAPL port:  Now a stop on AAPL May 625s at 36.00 


  45. FAS Money – Updated position:


  46. Jabob / PCLN
    this is how I play stock like PCLN:
    buy July 530/500 put spread @0.90 and sell same amount of July 425 puts @1.45 
    it has very good positive Theta and your short puts very good protected and even creasy stock continue up you still make money


  47. Re TLT – when something has gone this far in our favor… are you thinking TLT will drop below 111 or just not wanting to be greedy? Thanks for explaining. (My basis is .65c)


  48. PHil, does it make sense to get in the USO April $39 puts for around .98 at this stage?  Or perhaps wait for a small bounce?


  49. LFLAN
    How does one out a ‘stop’ on the long calls if they are being ‘sold’ for a profit.
    Fidelity doesn’t know how to do that.


  50. Hope you are having a nice time JRW – what's the economy look like over there?

    GLL/Yshen – Sure the ones we have in our portfolios I still like. 

    AAPL doing it's usual job of trying to save the Nasdaq despite SOX being down 1.5%. 

    Access/Bob – I've been on all morning.  

    PCLN/Jabob – Because it's Monday?  

    IWM Money/StJ – Well I don't mean on a spike.  If you put in a buy order at $1.50, someone will see it and put it to you.  Anyway, you just have to use your judgment on those, can't try to teach good exiting techniques every time we have to put on a stop.  

    FAS Money – If $15 doesn't hold on XLF then we're going to want to sell more calls. 

    10:00 AM On the hour: Dow -1.14%. 10-yr +0.08%. Euro -0.20% vs. dollar. Crude -1.72% to $101.53. Gold +0.86% to $1644.15.

    Come on people – WAKE UP:  

    March Employment Trends Index+5.2% Y/Y to 107.28, vs. 107.47 in Feb. (revised). The slight decline in the index follows five consecutive months of strong gains.

    Dollar Dims on Fed Speculation (WSJ)

    Portuguese bank dependence on ECB borrowing rose to a record €56.32B in March from €47.55B previously. Facilitating the jump were easier collateral rules which allowed lenders to present things like residential mortgages and unsecured consumer loans as security for freshly minted euros. 

    UBS says more U.S. coal production cuts are coming and that thermal demand is waning due to weather and natural gas fuel switching. The firm expects a material impact to thermal producer estimates and sizable cuts at Arch Coal (ACI +0.5%) and for Alpha Natural (ANR +1.2%), Patriot Coal (PCX +0.5%) and James River Coal (JRCC -4.3%) to adjust production also. 

    Interesting if true, but I doubt it:  Shares of Frontline (FRO +2.4%) spike higher after trading in negative territory earlier. Sparking the quick rally is chatter that the shipping company is in play as a takeover target.

    "The health-care system in the U.S. reminds us somewhat ominously of the bubble in housing finance," write 2 Citigroup economists, noting the government influence on both. Of health care spending rising 2.5X faster than incomes over the last 3 decades, a reader is reminded of Herb Stein's law: If something cannot go on forever, it will stop

    AOL (AOL) may be +43% as investors lick their lips at the prospect of a fat juicy payout following its patent sale to Microsoft, "but selling patents won’t solve all of AOL’s problems," writes MarketBeat. "It can 'aggressively execute' as much as it wants, the plan is still the problem." Selling IP isn't much of a business model – "just ask Kodak."

    Disruptive tech:  MagicJack (CALL +9.8%) issues upside guidance for Q1, with EPS of $0.26 vs. $0.14 consensus, with revenues of $37.4M vs. $34.1M consensus. The company says it hopes to repurchase the maximum amount available under its current share buyback program and will seek approval to increase the program by an additional $20M. (earlier

    Sterne Agee's Shaw Wu breaks down the value of Research In Motion's (RIMM +3.3%) various pieces, and sees “intrinsic value" in RIM but isn't sure "if a price of over $7B makes sense.” He sees a valuation range of $5B-$7B, for a stock price of $9.50-$13.50; current market cap is ~$6.6B. RIM’s patents might not be all that valuable, Wu contends.


  51. Hi Iflan — Aapl is it a mental stop at 36 or set up a triling stop like 1.00.  thx


  52. Move your stop up as you go, staying behind the bid by about 1 dollar on those calls.   Maya….they certainly should be able to do that for you.  It's just a trailing stop on a profitable trade.


  53. Bobhu,
    I had the same problem (Rogers cable Internet coming in from Canada).  I did an IP refresh (around the same time you said you said you could get back on so may not have been it) and everything worked after that.


  54. gucci…set a REAL stop.  You don't want to lose your profits on this while you're in the bathroom.    My stop loss right now is set at 39.0


  55. IWM Money / Phil – I don't put stops on these, just alerts on TOS as these hard stops are just too "visible". We are still in the positions now.


  56. Iflan—saw it too late and missed the buy back of short calls--just hold the bcs?
    Thanks


  57. Phil- with the thought we might have more downside action this week before a real bounce attempt- considering buying back short side of bull call spread on TZA SQQQ etc and hope to resell when I feel we may be ready for a bounce- Thoughts?


  58. Savi…You could just hold the spreads.   I'll explain when time allows why I bought them back this a.m.   But the spread is O.K. 


  59. AAPL:   I was stopped out at 38.90 on the 50 calls.  Now back fully in CASH!


  60. iflan—thanks


  61. TLT/Morx – On the naked calls, just don't want to be greedy.  I have faith in $111 holding on the spreads but, if we can get .95 two weeks early, why wait and risk the unlikely? 

    USO/Jerconn – I was ready to go bullish if they held $101.50 but this is pathetic.  It's a little (a lot) chasey now but I always like selling SCO May $33 puts for $1.20 and you can buy the May $33/36 bull call spread for $1.80 for net .60 on the $3 spread that's $3.29 in the money with oil at $101.20 so basically a bet that oil doesn't go back over $103.50 BUT – it is summer driving season so, if they are ever going to pop oil – this would be the time so best to consider it the first small scale-in to a larger, rolled position.  

    Thanks Lotter – Access issue seems to have been regional.  Can't figure out why.  

    Dollar bounced back over 80.15 and rally is losing steam as we head into the EU non-close.  


  62. lotter/website problem, Thanks.  I have cablevision in central Jersey.  I don't know why I got the problem but I miss the AAPL Trade.  :-( .


  63. Phil/
    What do you think of the PCLN July Put 600/570 @ 3.00?
    thanks


  64. IWM/StJ – Oh that's good!  

    Buy backs/Jthom – Sure, that's always a valid way to go as long as you keep a mental stop on for a point (usually a major resistance cross) at which you KNOW what you will sell to cover.  That way you define your risk and don't have to panic at the last minute when it happens.  

    CASH/Lflan – Excellent move! 


  65. $5KP – These TLT spreads are now at $0.95 so we are out!


  66. AAPL/Thanks Phil….for those that could stay with the trades we pushed another 8% or so into the portfolio before noon!    I'm going to have a quiet lunch and I'll get back online in the afternoon. 


  67. StJ / TLT  - Did you get a actual fill for 0.95 on that spread?  I had a open order for 0.95 for a few days now.  Just wonderin.


  68. Phil,
    Any thoughts on the SQQQ May 10/11 BCS around 65? Is it too risky with Apple earnings coming? Thanks!


  69. CNBC playing Elvis Costello's "Pump it up" as bumper music….. Hmmm
    You go guys


  70. I haven't been able to get filled at 0.95 on TLT spread either. Order has been outstanding all day.


  71. TLT / Burrben – You might want to try to leg out of the spread to get out. Last price on the 110 was $5.67 and on the 111 was $4.74. But it was better 10 minutes ago at $5.70 and $4.75.


  72. Nice break in LNKD today, marked down $3 at the open.  This means that GS must have sold all the inventory that they held when they upgraded the stock two weeks ago…


  73. TLT $0.95 spread..not filled. same here.


  74. I just got filled on the TLT Spread at 0.95


  75. TLT $0.95 spread just got filled by TOS, $5.80/$4.85. :-)


  76. optimism over US economy fading i think…economic surprise index about to go negative…bonds strong…  mirage that economy was rapidly improving…its just improving at very slow pace.


  77. Phil – I sold the USO Apr $40 this morning (a bit early it seems…).
    What would be the next line to start a new entry?


  78. 11:00 AM On the hour: Dow -0.98%. 10-yr +0.11%. Euro -0.19% vs. dollar. Crude -1.7% to $101.56. Gold +1% to $1646.45. 

    VC fundraising slumped 35% in Q1 to $4.9B, with three quarters of the total raised by just five firms. Relatively new company Andreessen Horowitz led the way with $1.5B, while Canaan and Bain each raised $600M. The decline in fundraising comes despite an increase in venture-backed IPOs

    Wow, the treasury got them to commit almost 4% in a quarter – that's AMAZING!  Community banks increased their lending to small businesses by $1.3B in Q4 vs. Q3 as part of a $30B Treasury scheme to promote such lending, with 235 of the 281 participating banks providing more money in loans. 

    A Complete Roundup Of A Very Bizarre Week Of Economic Data

    The new earnings season kicks off this week, beginning what could be a gloomier crop of corporate results, and outlooks could be even more important than the quarter numbers. But there could be an upside to all the pessimism; one analyst tells FT that Q1 estimates have been ratcheted down so much that “many companies should beat expectations.”

    Why Stocks Look Too Pricey (WSJ)

    Painful Revelations With Mark Grant As We Edge Down The Holmesian Path

    From an income statement perspective, 'a paycheck just ain't what it used to be' with food and energy prices rising and payroll growth (typically a good proxy for income growth) is disappointingly timid leaving real disposable income diverging weakly from a supposed job recovery. The balance sheet perspective has been helped by the rise of the equity market but the recovery in net worth in the last three years has barely outstripped income growth, leaving the ratio deeply depressed. The upshot is that the recent pick-up in consumption is not being fueled by income or wealth gains, but mainly by drawing down savings. Many households remain deeply distressed and react to higher costs of living by drawing down savings further. In sum, a true virtuous cycle still seems a long way off. As weather effects fade and gas pain builds the data should soften.

    Some Dreary Forecasts From Recovery Skeptics (NYT)

    Spring brings signs of hope and renewal — except in the housing market.

    New Face of the Housing Crisis: The Middle Class (The Fiscal Times)

    Paul Ryan's Deficit Reduction Fairy Tales: The national Republican Party has consciously chosen to develop political strategies crafted around lying to the public since the days of Richard Nixon and Lee Atwater.

    Strange Politics: Texas-Sized Safety Net Supports County Voting 83% Against Obama (Bloomberg)

    Murkowski Becomes Third Republican Senator To Criticize GOP’s War On Women

    The ECB has completely lost control over the monetary policy for Greece

    Greek Debt Default: Investors’ and Risk Managers’ Perspective (Risk Data)

    Over 20% of All Real Estate Loans in Spain are Delinquent; Construction Firm Delinquencies Ended 2011 at 17.65%; Late Payment on All Loans Ended 2011 at 7.61%

    Being bearish on China-related investments is in no way analogous to long-term bearishness on the country's economy, writes The Real Interloper. He sees little evidence China will avoid the "investment bubble/collapse/steady growth" process so common throughout economic history.

    Fighting With Spanish Windmills, Or How Spain's Debt/GDP Ratio Is Double What Is Reported

    Now that it has overtaken Airbus as the no. 1 aircraft producer, Boeing (BA -1.8%) is now poised to profit from 787 Dreamliners and 737 planes that have caused difficulty in recent years, Maxim says in projecting a $90 price target: “After years of design and testing for these two aircraft, we believe it is now time for Boeing to ring the cash register."

    Book Review: Currency Wars

    Solar Panels Should be Cheaper Than TVs  (Forbes)

    The gold rush heads to Kansas, where prospectors are punching holes in the ground in search of oil and gas in the 5K foot deep Mississippian Lime formation. Leases fetching $30/acre 3 years ago are fetching $3K/acre in the best spots. We think this is a game-changer says a Shell spokesman. Locals – who have seen oil booms come and go – remain a bit more wary.

    Weil: Groupon IPO Scandal Is the Sleaze That’s Legal (Bloomberg)

    Jobs’s Biographer to Page: What Part of “I’m Going to Destroy Android” Didn’t You Understand? (All Things Dsee also Apple’s War on Android (Businessweek)

    Very good advice:  Seven Steps To Bankrolling Your First $100,000

    Billionaires And Amish People Are Equally Happy


  79. ok, ok… i'll sell for .95. but except for the possibility that TLT might drop way below 111, why wouldn't i roll the long caller on Wed to May and take assignment of the stock next week with the intention of a monday morning exit? Just seems to be "on track" as they say. Anyone have some thoughts?


  80. Yeah, my TLT filled too.  


  81. Man, the EDZ $14/16 BCS is flying off the shelf! :)


  82. PCLN/Pat – It's the thing that will not die.  I don't see why the spread as betting on them to drop 10% is a stretch.  Our bet on the $560 puts isn't that they go to $560 but that they drop $50 or $100 on bad news and the value of our puts jumps up and we get the hell out.  In your spread, even if you do get the drop, you'll be trapped in the spread and screwed if they bounce back.  

    TLT/$5KP, StJ – Very nice.  Cash is good! 

    SQQQ/Enni – I like it.  I can't imagine what AAPL will say to surprise to the upside at this point.  

    TLT/Ult, Burr – You might want to kill the calls for a bounce off $116 (if we get there) and then put tight stops on the short calls, hoping for a pullback.  And what StJ said, of course.

    USO/Yshen – Now we're down to $101, I'm more inclined to kill them myself with inventories on Weds.  I'd wait and see if we get a bounce to sell into.  If not, when the $100 line breaks, things will get fun (or see SCO spread above). 

    Actually, USO April $40 calls at $1.80 is greedy not to take money in $25KP.  Let's take of 10 at $1.80 and leave the last 10 with a stop at $1.60.  

    TLT/$5KP, Morx – It's fine to ride out but, in a $5KP where we have little flexibility, I'd rather free up $950 and lock in a profit today than wait a week to make $50 more.  Don't forget, I can't sell today and buy again later (day trading) and I can no longer profit (other than $50) from a move up in TLT so by doing this, if for some reason TLT dives tomorrow – I can reload.  

    EDZ/Pharm – Will be nice if it hits.  I do have to be careful what I say in the main post these days…


  83. EDZ – not for 40c


  84. I'm out of my DIA 130 puts, now looking to either buy back lower if we get a slight stick or most likely roll down to the 128 puts.


  85. ban2….re your morning question about daytrading AAPL……..I've described in posts months ago how I daytrade AAPL, but briefly,  I'll pick usually the next monthly, in this case May, and I'll buy maybe 10 at-the-money calls.   If they go up a few clicks I'll buy maybe 20 more.  If they up a few more clicks I'll double that to , say, 60 contracts now.  At this point I will have set a trailing stop so that I can lose little or no money if the stock drops.  I will simply be stopped out and the trade will be over.  If the stock continues to rise I may even double down again, to say a total of 100 or 120 contracts, all the while keeping my trailing stop in place.  At some point I will be stopped out and the trade will be over.  Over the years I've made more money daytrading AAPL than I have using any other stock option technique.  It's a bit tricky to learn, and if you don't do it correctly you can lose your pants.  So I've stopped posting my AAPL daytrades here.  Not to mention that by the time I would post them, many times the trade would be over.  But that's basically how I do it. 


  86. Did someone mention the FED? Dollar getting the beatdown.


  87. Good timing on oil – Dollar dropping below 80 and giving everything a boost.  Gold just $1,644 after  bouncing back from $1,640 but no reload on the short play (futures) unless the Dollar firms up.  I assume we got some dovish QE rumor somewhere.  


  88. Actually, Euro ($1.31) and Pound ($1.589) flew up together.  No big move by Yen (81.34) or EUR/CHF (1.201) today so could be something said to support EU instead.  


  89. Phil / Economy over here

    Well, next month they'll be auctioning off 22 classic Ferraris for an average price of 1,400,000 Euros; so I guess all is well in my neighborhood !!  8-)


  90. Including this one:


  91. JRW -wow what a beautiful piece of work…what year is that Ferarri?  I'm guessing 1965?  


  92. Iflan – on the daytrading AAPL, is that straightup calls, or spreads?


  93. And this:


  94. jerconn,

    1st is a '57, the 2nd a '66


  95. jerconn…..straight up calls


  96. I'm looking at the DJI and NAS charts.   Looks to me as if we are headed upward for the afternoon overall.  What think Phil? 


  97. Iflan
    thank you for the detailed explain. – I do remember reading a similar paragraph  awhile back and now have it copied.
    I know you trade weeklies sometimes trying to take advantage of the time decay as the week ends.
    Thought you might have been doing that – as I remember you were doing pretty well with those also.


  98. Markets rallied @ 11:30 on the button. Back to even on very light volume in less than an hour..


  99. JRW – which one are you going for?  classic pieces of work…tho I have to admit I'm inclined toward American muscle, such as Corvette stingrays but more of the seventies and eighties…


  100. Supervalu Is Drastically Undervalued

    Thanks JRW, that's very helpful! ;-)

    Up/Lflan – Looks like it's a pop based on the Dollar and, in a market this thin – it can't be trusted.  Dollar now 79.90 is lower than I would have thought it would go but China (Hang Seng) and Europe still have to play catch-up tomorrow unless we get back to flat.  

    12:00 PM On the hour: Dow -1.08%. 10-yr +0.15%. Euro -0.08% vs. dollar. Crude -2.19% to $101.05. Gold +0.75% to $1642.25.

    Short on Tools, Central Banks Left With Words.

    Employment Increase in U.S. Trails Most-Pessimistic Forecasts. Hiring by American employers trailed the most pessimistic forecasts in March, casting doubt on the strength of the expansion now in its third year. The 120,000 increase in payrolls reported by the Labor Department in Washington yesterday was the smallest in five months. The data also showed the unemployment rate fell to 8.2 percent as people left the labor force, while workers put in fewer hours.

    Consumer Credit in U.S. Rose Less Than Forecast in FebruaryU.S. consumer borrowing rose less than forecast in February, restrained by a drop in credit-card debt, according to a Federal Reserve report. Credit increased $8.7 billion, the least in four months, after a revised $18.6 billion gain in January that was more than initially estimated, Federal Reserve figures showed today in Washington. Economists projected a $12 billion rise in the measure of revolving and non-revolving loans for February, according to the median forecast in a Bloomberg News survey. Smaller gains in borrowing indicate American households are continuing to pay down debt or are less optimistic about their finances. “Credit card borrowing has slowed down a bit,” Aneta Markowska, a senior U.S. economist at Societe Generale in New York, said before the report. “Clearly there was a run up in the past few months related to the holidays, and we’ve seen a pretty meaningful slowdown. The process of repairing consumers’ balance sheets still has farther to go.”

    The combination of the weak jobs report and the chance the Fed may not do anything about it isn't all that's worrying investors, R.W. Baird's Bruce Bittles says. “The weakening fundamental outlook is occurring at a time when the technical picture is deteriorating,” he says, noting diverging trends between Dow Transports and the Russell 2000, and fewer stocks hitting 52-week highs.

    It's not America that's in decline, as the "international chattering class" would say, writes Walter Russell Mead in the WSJ, it's the trilateral economic system that it managed with Europe and Japan. Instead, we live in a septagonal world in which "China, India, Brazil and Turkey are now on Washington's speed dial."

    U.K. Consumer Spending Slows as Fuel Prices Climb, Times SaysConsumer spending in the U.K. on items other than gasoline has risen in March at the slowest pace in at least two years because of rising fuel prices, The Times reported, citing MasterCard’s SpendingPulse survey. Spending rose 0.8 percent last month as consumers were forced to divert more of their earnings to fuel costs for their cars, according to the newspaper. Gasoline prices were 9.8 percent higher in March than a year ago, The Times said.

    Greek election season looks to be underway as a government spokesman says Parliament will be dissolved on Wednesday. The election is expected to take place on May 6. Polls show the 2 main parties - PASOK and New Democracy – both more or less answering to Brussels - garnering just 25-35% of the vote as opposed to 70% in the last election. 

    Spain Plans Health-Care Reform to Reassure Markets, El Pais Says. The Spanish government will present “forceful” measures in coming days to reassure investors after the nation’s borrowing costs rose, El Pais reported, citing unnamed government officials.

    Portugal Will Stick to Austerity Plan, Coelho Tells Die Welt. Portugal will maintain its austerity program after the International Monetary Fund said the country should relax the measures if its recession worsens, Die Welt reported, citing an interview with Prime Minister Pedro Passos Coelho. 

    Maybe this moved us?  The euro/Swiss franc cross breached the SNB's 1.20 floorfor the 2nd time in a week last night, hitting CHF 1.1996 (currently back to 1.2014). Liquidity was thin as much of Europe remained on Easter holiday, but one wonders if the SNB is set to make a statement and burn the euro shorts as it gets back to full staff tomorrow. 

    Beijing 1Q Average New Home Prices Fall 20% on Year. Average new home prices fell to 12,326 yuan per square meter in the first quarter from a year earlier, citing the Beijing Real Estate Association. 18,000 new and existing home units were sold in the first quarter, down 14% from a year earlier.

    Hedge Funds Cut Wagers as Fed Signals Less Stimulus: Commodities. Hedge funds reduced bullish bets on commodities for a second consecutive week as the Federal Reserve signaled it may refrain from more monetary stimulus, increasing concern that growth will slow and curb demand for raw materials. 

    JPMorgan's(JPM) Infamous Trader 'The London Whale' Has Another Nasty Nickname.

    Slumping U.S. Crop Reserves Raising Food Costs in Election Year. U.S. corn stockpiles are poised to be the smallest in 16 years by August and soybean reserves will be lower than the government expected, potentially accelerating food-price inflation in an election year. The U.S. Department of Agriculture may say tomorrow that corn inventories on Aug. 31 will be 37 percent lower than a year earlier at 715 million bushels (18.2 million metric tons), the average of 32 analyst forecasts compiled by Bloomberg show. That compares with a projection of 801 million bushels last month. Soybean stockpiles will be 242 million bushels, down from a March prediction of 275 million, the survey showed. The government is already predicting food inflation of 2.5 percent to 3.5 percent in 2012.

    Morgan Stanley's 10 Best Ideas, the best U.S. stocks based on "favorable risk-reward profiles" and "out-of-consensus thinking": SLBCTLUNPBWARNRAAPLUATGTTDCCBS.

    SuperValu (SVU +2.1%) sees a wave of bearish bets pile up as concerns over the viability of the supermarket chain mount. Since the end of 2011, short positions in SVU have jumped 41% to 72.9M shares – repping about a third of all outstanding shares. SA author Jeffrey Moore presents the bull case for a turnaround that he says could mimic the one at Steak n' Shake. SVU -35.4% YTD.

    AOL's (AOL +44.1%patent sale to Microsoft (MSFT-0.7%) fetched at least three times the expected price, Benchmark says; most of Wall Street viewed the patents as worth a maximum of $300M, meaning AOL effectively pulled $7.63/share "out of thin air" to hand to investors. Benchmark hikes its price target on the shares to $28 from $18. (also)

    SA author Akram's Razor asks whether Facebook (FB) is "morphing into the Web's OS?" It provides free "outsourced development infrastructure for anyone doing anything online," and so is "holding some very valuable cards." That leaves Google (GOOG) with a problem, as if it can't access Facebook, how ill it be able to "organize the world's information?"

    American Universities Infected by Foreign Spies Detected by FBI. Hearkening back to Cold War anxieties, growing signs of spying on U.S. universities are alarming national security officials. As schools become more global in their locations and student populations, their culture of openness and international collaboration makes them increasingly vulnerable to theft of research conducted for the government and industry. “We have intelligence and cases indicating that U.S. universities are indeed a target of foreign intelligence services,” Frank Figliuzzi, Federal Bureau of Investigation assistant director for counterintelligence, said in a February interview in the bureau’s Washington headquarters.

    "Dividends are a tool to adjust capital structure … (they) do not add value," writes Dirk Schmidt, brushing aside ideas Apple's (AAPL) recent dividend announcement has anything to do with its recent run-up. He also notes a trend of lower institutional ownership of the shares has not been reversed by the move.

    Three lunchtime reads:

    1) Build a habit-forming dividend strategy with these 7 retail REITs

    2) America reassembles industrial policy

    3) 8.2% unemployment: QE3 odds have risen 


  101. If I didn't have to go to dinner, I'd buy a break of IWM 80.33 or sell a loss of 80.05, fwiw !!


  102. Fear of the Bernank…look at the $ take a pounding….
     

    7:15
    Dinner and keynote
    Ben Bernanke, Chairman, Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System


  103. Jabo - the PCLN May 850/900 call spread is only $7 if you want to hedge your shorts going into earnings 8) .


  104. ban2….I do trade AAPL all sorts of ways.  I just squeezed a few thousand out of some other accounts with in 635.50 out 636.30 using the AAPL shares of stock.  Many many ways to trade this magnificent equity.  Just concentrate on honing the techniques that work for you, and AAPL will help you accomplish the rest. 



  105. Phil – what about something simple like a June UUP 21/23 bull call for $1? What is your favorite dollar play?


  106. LFLAN
    Do you have an email I can write to?


  107. UUP/Jrom – I like that but it's kind of the same as shorting gold and I think gold has a chance for a really nice pay-off on the May puts.  

    PCLN is turning into an excellent stock to sell on those morning pops!   But then, get the hell out EOD…

    P making new lows.  

    So far, it looks like just a weak bounce, made even more pathetic coming on the back of a down Dollar and AAPL flying up 2% to goose the Nas, which is still down 1% anyway. 


  108. LFLAN
    You can respond to imc1991@yahoo.com if you like


  109. Phil – time to re-load on some DIA puts?


  110. Violent move in TLT ($111.50 on Weds to $115.50 today) doesn't match up with subdued movement in stocks and Dollar.  I think there's still a bearish shoe to drop in stocks as $115.50 represents a lot of panic and nothing in this bounce has dropped TLT, including a half-point drop in the Dollar.  

    DIA/Jerconn – As a gamble, sure but officially I'm waiting to see which way the wind is blowing once the other markets open up tomorrow.  We opened up the DDMs in the $25KP to cover a surprise move up.  Don't think the CBs will give up without a fight – lots of Fed speak this week:

    Wednesday Apr 11

     

    Ben Bernanke Speaks
    7:15 PM ET
     

    Redbook
    [Bullet
    8:55 AM ET

    Wholesale Trade
    [Report][Bullet
    10:00 AM ET

    Eric Rosengren Speaks
    10:30 AM ET

    Naryana Kocherlakota Speaks
    12:15 PM ET

    Richard Fisher Speaks
    12:30 PM ET

    Dennis Lockhart Speaks
    12:45 PM ET

    Dennis Lockhart Speaks
    8:20 AM ET

    Esther George Speaks
    9:30 AM ET

    Eric Rosengren Speaks
    10:30 AM ET

    Beige Book
    [djStar]
    2:00 PM ET

    Treasury Budget
    [Report][djStar]
    2:00 PM ET

    James Bullard Speaks
    4:00 PM ET

    Janet Yellen Speaks
    7:30 PM ET
     

    Weekly Bill Settlement

    William Dudley Speaks
    7:15 AM ET

    Jobless Claims
    [Report][Star]
    8:30 AM ET

    William Dudley Speaks
    11:00 AM ET

    Charles Plosser Speaks
    12:30 PM ET

    Naryana Kocherlakota Speaks
    1:00 PM ET

    Sarah Bloom Raskin Speaks
    3:00 PM ET

    Money Supply
    [Bullet
    4:30 PM ET
    William Dudley Speaks
    8:00 AM ET

    Ben Bernanke Speaks
    1:00 PM ET
     

     


  111. Three dozen ETFs offer narrower ways to play tech, and PowerShares Nasdaq Internet Portfolio (PNQI) has been one of the more successful. Surprisingly, it holds no Apple at all. Instead, about 60% of its assets are in famous Internet brands like Priceline.com (PCLN), eBay (EBAY) and Google (GOOG), with Baidu (BIDU) providing some exposure to China. PNQI carries a disappointing 0.60% annual expense ratio, but in performance, it has kept up with the big boys, with a 17% return year-to-date


  112. I personally find it sad and amusing that they have to parade all of these Fed governors around to calm the masses and maintain the status quo. 


  113. PHIL/PCLN,
    If I buy the July 600/570 Put spread for 2.95 now. If PCLN drops $50 then the July 600 will be worth approx 650 (17.45) and 570 will be worth 620 (12.35) for a net of 5.10 and a profit of 2.15 on 2.95 (approx 70%). Is it not a good deal?
    Other way, if PCLN pops $50 from here then 600 will be worth 550 (5.55) and 570 will be worth 520 (4.00) for a net of 1.55 down approx 50%. can we not roll this losing spread?
    I understand getting trapped in the spread but can I exit the spread with a drop of $50? The advantage here is the low initial outlay. I maybe missing more important things to consider.

    Thanks !


  114. ink/parade… its called desperation

    Next wave down may be brutal but its hard to see the $ break out…important line 1376 ES/ 800 /TF 12898 /YM
    /NQ big ? since AAPL dominates.
     


  115. AA / Phil – I kept the AA money puts and calls (4 each) so that I could use it as a learning tool on selling premium, adjusting positions, etc.  So far I have done pretty well I think, up almost $100 on the year, despite both long calls and puts being down over $200. 
     
    This is my first earnings quarter, and i am unsure what to do with earnings tomorrow.  I have the following 2 positions:
     
    4 x APR $10 Calls @ $0.735 (now 0.175, up $224)
    2 x APR $10 Puts @ $0.54 (now 0.555, down $2)
     
    I have been anticipating the pullback, and so sold half the puts thinking worst case I would be able to more easily adjust.
     
    My options would seem to be to either do nothing and wait till next week, rolling out to the next month just like normal, ignoring earnings; simply adjusting next week in whatever manner seems most appropriate OR buy back the puts with the expectation that AA misses tomorrow and we go down.
     
    I am inclined to wait till next week and see what happens this week as we go into earnings.   it seems every time i try to guess a direction, i get it wrong and end up kicking myself.  Any thoughts or comments on this specifically or income generating trades during earnings in general would be much appreciated.
     
    thanks again for all you do, scot :)


  116. Where did everyone go?


  117. Every f n day ;-(
     
    FU PCLN and CMG!!!


  118. GNW has pulled back to .61 FIB at 7.78.  Schwab ranks it A.  Jan P&C total 3.05.  Good time to enter, or is bear upon us?


  119. I think next time we want to cover a bounce, we should use the Qs – or maybe just AAPL.  

    PNQI/Jabob – Not too surprising, AAPL would be holding PCLN back in an index.  

    Sad and amusing/Ink – That about sums it up. 

    PCLN/Pat – It sounds good if you hit those numbers.  However, the delta changes as the stock drops and you never know which way it will go.  I just find the plain puts more flexible as the goal is to take quick advantage of a bad news drop and be happy.  

    AA/Scot – I'd take out the callers as there's no sense in risking getting burned to the upside.  You're already burned to the downside and yes, things can get worse but also they can get better and you can always 2x that roll and sell more calls and no one expects AA to do well so it seems like going into earnings with the naked short puts is the best play.  

    Where/Palotay – I'm reading, it's a slow day.  Volume just 60M at 2:38 on the Dow.  

    Oil did get back to $102.57 and the indexes are recovering a bit, for what it's worth. 


  120. Phil…What's the most likely drag (down) on the markets tomorrow? 


  121. Phil,
     
    after getting out of my bearish positions earlier while the market was near low (Phew), have not got back in yet.  If we close down slightly say around 60 or 70 points on Dow, do you think we have a down day tomorrow or will the momentum turn for a pop (just your humble opinion).


  122. MA making new highs – all must be well.  LVS flying in anticipation of new Macau casino.  

    1:00 PM On the hour: Dow -0.84%. 10-yr +0.09%. Euro +0.25% vs. dollar. Crude -1.61% to $101.64. Gold +1% to $1646.35.

    2:00 PM On the hour: Dow -0.7%. 10-yr +0.07%. Euro +0.22% vs. dollar. Crude -1.01% to $102.27. Gold +1.02% to $1646.65.

    Can he wait until Jackson Hole? Fed Chairman Bernankegives the keynote address tonight at the Atlanta Fed's annual meeting at Stone Mountain, GA. It will be his first public remarks since last week's Fed minutes showed little enthusiasm for additional QE (and the weak NFP number). The talk's topic is financial reform and the government's role in mortgage finance.

    "I believe that the current market environment is setting up fora major retrenchment in risk assets," writes John Burbank to his investors, adding he has as strong of a conviction about Passport Capital's positioning as he's ever had. He thinks a recession is coming in 2012 or 2013, and with it a major decline in equity values.

    Chesapeake Energy (CHK -3.1%) swings without a safety net after reportedly removing most of its derivative hedges against gas and oil prices for 2012 and 2013. It's a big reversal in philosophy for a company that once bragged of being "the best in the industry” at natural-gas hedging. - I certainly don't think it's a bad idea to buy back what are essentially callers on nat gas when it's at $2 – especially when CHK controls about 20% of the US supply.  Could be a good time to go long on nat gas over the $2.10 line.  

    The lights aren't off for good yet for nuclear power in Japan after Kansai Electric petitions the government to restart two reactors and says it will spend ¥200B ($2.5B) to improve the ability of 11 of its reactors to withstand natural disasters. Time is running in short in the nation to make a decision on nuclear power, with demand for electricity set to outpace supply during the warmer summer months.

    First Solar (FSLR -2.6%) slips after BofA Merrill Lynch cut estimates, citing margin pressures and concerns regarding project pipeline growth. The firm says its latest round of checks suggest a cost per watt for leading silicon vendors below $0.65 by the middle of next year, and it doesn't see how the company can make money at level. 

    A silver lining to the solar crisis is that the fall in panel prices should enable the sector to compete without government subsidies, writes Liam Denning in the WSJ. However, it won't necessarily be the pioneers that benefit, but companies such as GE with the "scale to compete on price and absorb the inevitable cyclical losses."

    Gabelli recommends long-term investors take advantage of weakness in the waste industry sector to buy, noting that the companies have relatively high margins, stable revenue flows, and high barriers to entry. The firm's favorites in the space, in order of preference, are: Republic Services (RSG -0.5%), Waste Connections (WCN -1.2%), and Casella Waste (CWST -1.9%).

    Shares of Las Vegas Sands (LVS +2.6%crash through the $60 barrier while setting a 52-week high on heavy-than-normal trading volume. DailyFinance notes that the company boasts a cash king margin of over 10%, in what it sees as a "good predictor" of sustained long-term returns.

    The Twittersphere is ablaze with analogies over the premium Facebook (FB) will pay to buy Instagram. One tweet notes that the deal comes about 7 years after Flickr was bought for a paltry $35M by Yahoo. Another makes hay out of the fact that 551-day-old Instagramis worth $1B, while the 116-year-old New York Times Co. trades with a market cap of $949M.

    Shares of Shutterfly (SFLY -7.4%) drop lower in a heartbeat after Facebook snaps up Instagram in a move that potentially poses a bigger threat to the company's fortunes than an indy Instagram.

    Rumors that Amazon (AMZN -0.9%) plans to launch a smartphone reignite (previous), with Topeka analyst Brian Whitedissecting recent supply chain chatter to see a debut of a "sophisticated" smartphone from the firm sometime in 2012.

    This morning's noteworthy downgrade of Apple (AAPL+0.3%) from BTIG is offset by Topeka Capital's bullish note that predicts the iPhone 5 will be "extraordinary" and could dwarf previous launches. "This will be the most significant iPhone upgrade with a four-inch screen and a new, sleek look that we believe will require a Unibody case," the firm writes.


  123. Any TNA TZA traders care to call the close on IWM? I say 80.20…


  124. Phil – GE Fyi
    Just as a side note I was looking through my portfolio and noticed the GE Apr 19 puts/calls from the below rec. No real question, just pointing out we might have to do something before Apr ex.  Any plan, GE is at 19.24?  

    IncomePort
    I don't see GE popping $20 very easily but let's cash these puts in and sell 15 April $19 puts and calls for .99 to raise $1,485 that will expire in April. As we're willing to own GE long-term, either being forced to roll the puts or forced to buy stock to cover (with $2,195 already in our pocket) is not something we're worried about.  


  125. The Oxen Group added AAPL Apr20 600/615 Bull Call Spreads at 12.20 this afternoon for potential 20% gain if it holds 615 by expiration date. Looks likely to us.

    We also opened a short sale on BIG at 43.04 as the company broke key support lines today and resumed downtrend. 20-day MA looks likely to break 50-day MA this week as well.


  126. AA/Phil – Thanks for the advice.  I have bought back the 4 long calls and will see what the next 7 – 10 days brings to adjust the sold puts. 


  127. Kustomz
    My target was 80.60 when we hit 79.85, but now I believe 81 may be a better bet on very low volume.


  128. Got back in my shorts, hoping for EOD meltdown.


  129. PCLN/Jabob – I thought you were going to go bullish and be happy?  

    GNW/Kongen – I like them long-term but they can't catch a break (like SVU and WFR).  The SOX are still down 1.4% despite the amazing recovery of the AAPLdaq.  They have  a strong downtrend so I'd wait to see them get back over $8 or hold $7.40 (200 dma) at least. 

    Drag/Iflan – Well look at the schedule, they have 3-years to sell tomorrow and 10-years on Weds so the line-up is a non-committal Bernanke tonight and then we have Rosengren (big dove) early in the morning (2 days in a row!) but countered by bearish Kochelakota at 12:15, even more bearish Fisher at 12:30 and then Lockhart (neutral) at 12:45 – so it's bang, bang, bang ahead of the auction tomorrow but they have to keep demand for TBills up ahead of Weds and we get Lockhart (neutral) at 8:20, Esther George (very hawkish) at 9:30 and Rosengren again at 10:30 – which is not the line-up we'd expect.  BBook comes out at 2pm and that's bound to suck and then we get Bullard (hawk) and Yellen (dove and vice-chairman) wrapping it up.   By Thursday it looks like they are really trying to pump us up in the morning because you get double Dudley (dove) – but then they slam us back with Kocherlakota and Raskin. 

    On the whole, we are most likely to suffer from a poor performance out of Asia lading to another gap down open for us in the morning with maybe some good movement in the afternoon – like today.   

    Tomorrow/Rustle – I'd enjoy the cash and watch the show.  Who knows what EU or other CBs will say this week?    As a gamble, I'd short the Qs again.  

    IWM $77s hitting $3.50, which is very nice if you got in at $3.10 and not too bad from $3.20 either.  Should hit resistance here (RUT 806.50, /TF 804).  

    GE/Burr – They're at $19 – wasn't that the target?  They were .05 last week and, if you didn't take them out then, then you must really, really love them – otherwise, why not take .09 and run since there's still two weeks to go in which you can blow it and we went bearish anyway and have no faith in anyone holding their position now.  

    Sorry but on no planet is the last week's action (including this mini-rally) bullish…


  130. JR

     
    How are you positioned today?


  131. Kustomz/close

     
    I'd like to see it tank more but the Bots appear to have taken control.  They kicked in and prevented the meltdown at 11:00 and it's hard to imagine that they will give much back after fight that hard.


  132. Your calling for 81…

    I hear ya on the low volume but, why haven't we gained more ground on the volume? I think this is all EUR and AUD strength masking the real weakness


  133. 5% Retracement Rules:  

    • Dow falls from 13,300 to 12,900 (400) so 20% bounce (weak) is 12,980 and 40% bounce is 13,060 – now 12,970
    • S&P falls from 1,422 to 1,380 (42) so 20% bounce is 1,388 and 40% bounce is 1,396 – now 1,385
    • Nas falls from 3,128 to 3,032 (96) so 20% bounce is 3,051 and 40% bounce is 3,070 – now 3,053
    • NYSE falls from 8.300 to 7,975 (325) so 20% bounce is 8,040 and 40% bounce is 8,105 – now 8,004 
    • RUT falls from 841 to 801 (40) so 20% bounce is 809 and 40% bounce is 817 – now 805.

    So, overall, since Tuesday's high, we have only more than weak bounced on the BS AAPLdaq (and the SOX do not confirm it).  If ever there was a reason to ignore a move up – this is it! 


  134. I called 81 when we were at 80.56 and looking up about 3:00. Should have stayed with 80.60 at least I was out of everything.


  135. Phil / GE
    Sorry I don't understand what you mean.  The trade was to sell the GE Apr19 puts and calls for 0.99.  I actually sold them for 0.96.  To buy the trade back will cost 0.71.  A healthy profit for sure, but I don't understand where you are getting your numbers from.
    Also, I was thinking that you might want to buy the stock, or roll the puts.  


  136. GE/Income Portfolio – Burr – Sorry, I was looking at the weekly $19 puts only, I missed that it was the Income Portfolio play.  In that case, GE is at $19.21 and our target for April was $19 – that's a good thing.  As we already took a nice profit off the short Jan $17.50 puts of .72 and now we've sold these for .99, we're not worried about owning GE at net $17.29 and, if it goes up more, the plan was to buy the stock and roll the caller and sell more puts.  


  137. Did't get the rebound today, maybe tomorrow.


  138. That's what they said in 2008.  


  139. I wish every day could be like this.  So nice to get short again and actually have yet another anti stick at EOD. 


  140. Fugly close, broke below my futures support lines. Financials proved to be a false prophet

    see what I did there :-)


  141. Phil….The reason I asked your opinion on downward market forces is that I'm hoping for another 'mini-correction' in AAPL.  There lots of upward pressure on the stock pre-earnings, but the higher it goes, the more dangerous it becomes to make a play.  But a total market downdraft might push AAPL down a bit with it, which could be a setup for a play like we made today in the portfolio.  


  142. Very good headlining Kustomz! 

    Was a terrible close.  Dow volume up to 105M and all of it negative at the end, so much so that we dropped back to day's lows in the futures.  

    Going to be an interesting morning, that's for sure.  



  143. As Phil mentioned, low volume today. My charts have less than 90 M on the Dow and about 100 M less than last week on the S&P.


  144. At the close: Dow -1.02% to 12927. S&P -1.18% to 1382. Nasdaq -1.08% to 3047.

    Treasurys: 30-year +0.18%. 10-yr +0.02%. 5-yr -0.03%.

    Commodities: Crude -1% to $102.28. Gold +0.78% to $1642.85.

    Currencies: Euro +0.11% vs. dollar. Yen -0.09%. Pound -0.2%.

    Market recap: Stocks finished in the red for the fourth straight session after Friday's disappointing jobs report. A slowing economy would not be consistent with the recent rally in stocks, so some analysts now look for a 5%-7% selloff. Crude oil futures fell, goldrallied as nervousness took hold, and Treasury yields slid to near one-month lows. NYSE losers led winners nearly five to one.

    China may be experiencing economic contraction right now, says Patrick Chovanec. "There's a disconnect," he says, between China's reported economic numbers and reality on the ground. There isn't a single company he's talking to expecting an increase in revenue this year. "They're struggling to stay even."

    "The economy is just sucking wind right now," says an anonymous Chinese auto industry exec, making it clear which set of manufacturing surveys (one showing expansion, the other contraction) he's buying. "All the bullets were spent a couple of years ago," says an economist arguing the government has little in its policy arsenal to turn things around.

    The USDA is expected to report tomorrow expected corn stockpiles at summer's end will be 37% below last year, and possibly the lowest level ever relative to usage. "There will be no relief for consumers until later this year," says an ag economist, and that's only if high prices (and good weather) lead to a bumper crop. MOS -7% in the past month? What gives?

    Major media companies take a dive after Citigroup slashes its ratings on CBS (CBS -2.2%), Discovery (DISCA -1.7%), Disney (DIS -2.2%) and News Corp. (NWSA -2.2%) to Neutral from Buy. Time Warner (TWX -1.6%) also tumbles even after the firm hikes its price target on the company to $45 from $40. 

    InterMune (ITMN -16.4%) tumbles on news that a key clinical trial for its respiratory drug Esbriet has been delayed. Last week, ITMN said it didn't expect enrollment for the Phase 3 clinical trial to be completed until the end of 2012; it had previously forecast enrollment would be completed in Q2. Citing the delay, Jefferies and Leerink Swann cut price targets on the shares. 

    "I think Facebook (FB) panicked," says an observer of the Instagram acquisition. There's zero chance Instagram would have completed last week's funding round if it knew Facebook was interested, meaning Facebook saw the funding, then saw Instagram's Android app with more than 1M downloads its first day, and "decided to take out the competition before it had a chance to grow even bigger."


  145. 53787
    Welcome!


  146. bobhu + lotter
    Site Access
    I could not get on at 7:05am this morning Central Time. I was out tthe rest of the day, so don't know how it went after that.
    I'm riding on Comcast from Minneapolis.
    It's working perfectly for me this afternoon.


  147. Ben – I found it interesting when he said "….a safety net raises the degree of moral hazard" and then followed that up by saying "…new regulation limits moral hazard".


  148. Again, just happy to be here…thx Phil & newbie


  149. escohen5
      she decided on a university in Oregon
     
    REED?


  150. phil
     
    "The national Republican Party has consciously chosen to develop political strategies crafted around lying to the public since the days of Richard Nixon and Lee Atwater"
     
    This is news?


  151. I've learned to come in late on some of the posted trades here, today's was EDZ, which I've avoided simply out of fear that Asian equities would miraculously catch up with the U.S. equity performance year to date.  Today I jumped in, since Asia is looking more and more like a damp squib rather than a force capable of driving global growth.   EDZ looks like it could indeed take off, since it's down 31% over the last 13 weeks, which includes being up 5% over the last four weeks.  Fingers crossed.  If Europe falls off the table — which I also strongly suspect, but timing is as tricky with the ECB and other forces of central banking darkness arrayed against us — the U.S. markets first trimester rally may become a fond memory by mid-summer on a strong dollar and slack spending.


  152. "Long EDZ" Addendum:  Of course, since Asia is strongly represented in the MSCI EM 21 country index  --  China, India, Indonesia, Korea, Malaysia, Philippines, Taiwan and Thailand are included --having North Korea launch a missile, followed by a nuclear test a couple of months later, won't do much to bolster confidence in Asian equities.


  153. And if selling Asia and the U.S. aren't enough, there's always a wealth of short hypotheses to choose from:  the French election, for example. It should test the Entente Cordiale amongst the Germans, French and Brits, as Spain crunches up onto the rocky shores of a deleveraging economy with an immense structural unemployment problem. The Italians have been masters of the pan-European finance game for quite awhile, they might pull a rabbit out of a hat with a heavy reliance on imported E. European labor.  But I believe that Europe's economic trajectory looks distinctly less predictable than that of the U.S. for the next couple of years.  Europe is vastly overpriced compared to the U.S., particularly southern Europe is, and this will need to be recalibrated.  
     
    The French electoral process for choosing a president is a two-part process. The presidential campaign ends at midnight, April 20, 2012.  The first round of voting takes place on April 22, and the second round May 6th.  The election of a president — Francois Hollande, the Socialist, seems to have a slight edge for now — will be followed by a legislative election in June, creating a window of considerable uncertainty throughout Q2 2012.
     
    Hollande has a plan, of course, but everyone who gets into a fight has a plan until they get hit.  There's a decent chance that the Euro could tank and lend the dollar considerable strength into 2012, given the apparent differential in metrics, which indicate that the U.S. economy is merely slowing and stagnating while Europe's finances fall off a cliff.  
    .  


  154. la meme chose: "UK Treasurer shocked after tax-return analysis found that multimillionaires are exploiting loopholes to pay little or no tax, the Daily Telegraph reports."


  155. Good morning!

    I was up about 3 and saw the Shanghai close and went back to bed.  What manipulated BS!  Low of the day at 2 and then up 50 points (2%) into the close to finish up 0.88% for the day.  China had a $5.35Bn trade surplus, which is better than a deficit but certainly doesn't merit that sort of reaction.  The Hang Seng finished down 1.15% – much less affected by the same news in a non state-controlled market while the Nikkei was another joke, running up 110 into lunch but finishing the day down 8.  India was all over the place – mostly down, but finished flat on the day.  

    Dollar back over 80 now at 80.16 as Euro and pound have been dropping since midnight.  Euro fell through $1.31 like paper so very bad sign there and $1.59 was no support for the pound at all, now $1.589 – which confirms the fakeness I thought we were seeing yesterday.  Yen crashed form 81.8 at Nikkei open to 81.19 now.  Only EUR/CHF are making progress – back to 1.2028.  

    Oil is $101.92, gold $1,645, silver $31.59, copper $3.73, nat gas $2.10 and gasoline $3.28.   

    Futures have Dow 12,885, S&P 1,378, Nas 2,738 and, of course, RUT 800.80 – so still the line to watch.  


  156. Good Morning All,
    anyone having trouble with TOS this AM…..not able to connect to the platform. 
    Thanks


  157. TOS ok here


  158. jasu/tos  No problems here just signed off and resigned in with no problems


  159. Guy on CNBC says "Yesterday could have been a lot worse" – that's the new bullish outlook?  I think he means it SHOULD have been a lot worse and was propped up on low-volume nonsense. 

    Tuesday's economic calendar:

    7:30 NFIB Small Business Optimism Index

    7:45 ICSC Retail Store Sales

    8:55 Redbook Chain Store Sales

    10:00 Wholesale Trade

    1:00 PM Results of $32B, 3-Year Note Auction

    3:05 AM In Asia, Japan -0.1% to 9538. Hong Kong -0.9% to 20401. China +0.6% to 2300. India -0.1% to 17204.

    6:00 AM Overseas: Japan -0.1%. Hong Kong -1.1%. China +0.9%. India +0.1%. London -0.7%. Paris -1.0%. Frankfurt -0.7%

    Notable earnings before Tuesday's open: SVU

    Notable earnings after Tuesday's close: AAADTN

    Those looking (ever harder, it seems) for justification for more easing won't find it in the speech Bernanke delivered in Georgia, which doesn't mention monetary policy or much about the economy.

    Massive, Catastrophic Spike in Interest Rates Still Not Happening (WSJ)

    Profit Growth Stalls as European Slump Hampers Recovery. U.S. corporate profit growth stalled in the U.S. last quarter as companies from McDonald’s Corp. (MCD) (MCD) to 3M Co. (MMM) (MMM) saw gains in the world’s largest economy eroded by a slump in Europe. Earnings at Standard & Poor’s 500 Index companies, excluding financials, are seen gaining 0.6 percent in the first and the second quarter from a year earlier, according to analysts’ estimates compiled by Bloomberg, the slowest growth rate since 2009.

    Goldman says it's become more cautious on the economy over the near-term, noting that even a "modest" slowdown feels "more dangerous than normal." The firm cites some key factors: An end to GDP growth acceleration, earlier data strength that may have been weather-related and not based on any sustainable trend, and fiscal policy that's consolidating and monetary policy appears to have run its course

    Why It’s Impossible For Goldman To Be Wrong About The Stock Market (Business Insider)

    Just as stocks suffer their first real stumble of the year, fund managers are growing more bullish on stocks and the economy, according to Citigroup’s latest institutional client survey. “Investors have responded to higher stock prices by… expecting even higher stock index levels,” Tobias Levkovich says. The managers continue to crave tech stocks, already the best performers this year, and shun utilities.

    The Dow's 1% drop yesterday on the heels of the March employment report was the fourth straight decline for the index, but noting the notoriously volatile nature of those reports, Janney Montgomery Scott thinks "the rally window remains open" and urges investors to consider positions in energy, technology and health care.

    VIX Posts Longest Streak of Gains Since 2003The benchmark gauge for U.S. options prices rose for a seventh day, the longest streak since August 2003, as concern about employment growth and earnings spurred investors to guard against losses in stocks.

    Financial Bonds Sag as Europe Tensions Smolder: Credit Markets. Bonds from financial companies are lagging behind industrial securities for the first time since November as a failed bond auction in Spain and rising French borrowing costs drive concern that Europe's sovereign-debt crisis may reignite.Relative yields are rising from the lowest levels in seven months as optimism fades that Europe will be able to avoid a default that would infect bank balance sheets worldwide.

    Spain Confronts Crisis Threat as Rajoy Seeks Deficit Cuts

    Total Collapse In The Egypt Market.

    The Bank of Japan kept monetary policy unchanged today, ignoring recent calls from lawmakers for additional easing. The story may change in the next few weeks, with more easing possible as revised price projections are likely to show a goal of 1% inflation is not in sight. USD -0.3% to ¥81.30.  Japanese PM Noda says the government will start holding meetings on overcoming deflation. Reports suggest the meetings will begin as soon as this month, and that BOJ Governor Masaaki Shirakawa will attend as an observer.

    China posted an unexpected trade surplus in March of $5.35B vs. an expected deficit of $3.15B, with imports up only 5.3% vs. expectations of +9%. Exports were a larger-than-expected +8.9%.

    Chinese banks will be "severely punished" for charging excessive fees, according to a letter from the China Banking Regulatory Commission. The CBRC says it began an investigation into bank fees on April 1.

    "The domestic economy remains beset by … imbalanced and unsustainable development," says China Railway Group, who, along with China Railway Construction expects lower revenues and earnings in 2012 amidst a sharp fall in national railway spending. "Aggressive," is Daiwa's description of even the reduced revenue projections.

    China's Stocks Drop as Trade Data Stoke Concerns About EconomyChina’s stocks fell, dragging the benchmark index to the lowest level in more than a week, as trade data stoked concerns about the slowing economy.  “The economy isn’t in very solid shape and growth may trend down further in coming months,” said Wei Wei, an analyst at West China Securities Co. in Shanghai. “The market may be under selling pressure because of growth concerns.” 

    China faces ‘timebomb’ of ageing population (Guardian)

    Easing Inflation in Asia? Not So Fast Say AnalystsDepending on where you look, Asia's inflation is either benign or stubbornly hot.

    Now Can We Start Talking About the Real Foxconn? (Bloomberg)

    Germany's trade surplus fell in February, with an unexpected jump in exports (+1.6%) but an even stronger rise in imports (+3.9%). Non-eurozone countries, primarily the U.S., U.K. and China, are currently the main drivers of Germany's export growth.

    Fitch lowered Las Vegas' credit outlook to negative from stable on $561.2M of debt because of the city's budget deficit and lingering housing crisis. 

    The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau plans to propose new rules that would force mortgage servicers (includingWFCCBACJPM) to be far more transparent about the costs faced by homeowners and to provide warnings before any interest rate changes. 

    Measuring Up Citigroup vs Bank of America (NYT)

    Putting It Into Perspective: Bruno Iksil's $100 Billion Position Makes Him The Seventh Largest Bank Holding Company By CDS Exposure.

    At least 26 Fortune 500 companies including GE and Duke Energy paid no U.S. federal income taxes during 2008-11, in part because of the break for accelerated depreciation, according to Citizens for Tax Justice. “These big, profitable corporations are continuing to shift their tax burden onto average Americans,” says the group's director. “This isn’t fair to the rest of us."

    Make Your Taxes Disappear! (MoJo)

    High gas prices may not tank the economy after all, James Hamilton asserts: "Evidence suggests that an oil price increase that just reverses a previous oil price decrease – and that is basically what we've experienced so far in 2012 – is not nearly as disruptive as if the price were rocketing into uncharted territory." The U.S. economy continues to grow, albeit at a disappointing rate, he says. 

    Best Buy (BBY) is recommending investors reject a "mini-tender" offer by TRC Capital to purchase up to 4M shares, or approximately 1.7% of the company's outstanding common stock, at $22.00 per share. The offer price represents a discount of approximately 4.1% to the $22.95 closing price of on April 4, the day before the offer commenced. Shares +0.4% AH.

    Weight-loss stocks Arena Pharmaceuticals (ARNA) and Orexigen Therapeutics (OREX) are on the radar of traders after rival Vivus (VVUSlands a 3-month PDUA extension from the FDA for Qnexa. The decision pushes back the target date for the agency to consider the closely-watched drug's safety plan to July 17 from April 17. Premarket: ARNA +2.6%, OREX +2.3%, VVUS -7.9%.

    Medical tourism blooms: Club Med (New Yorker)

     


  160. I'm in on TOS.  

    Taxes/Kongen – Shocking! 


  161. never stops?
     
    Priceline.com initiated with an Outperform at Cowen


  162. Seems a few more people are having the same issues with TOS not loading- Verizon customers all in the PA area.
    Thanks for the quick responses 


  163. Read an article in Cambodian Daily today about the President of Guatamala hosting a drug conference with the objective of de-criminalizing drugs in S. and C. America saying it is causing the cartels to have too much power and it just does not work. He was the x head of the security services – Like Santorium saying: "We should legalize drugs." Columbia is also on board. Obama will attend but don't expect much imput from him as the Republicans will use it against him in the election. I wish our leaders would take a clue that is is too expensive and does not work – wishful thinking.


  164. A couple links from FT:
    Spanish 10-year bond yields hit 5.91%
    “The big unknown is how Spanish bonds are going to trade – that’s more important to me than the US [jobs] data,” said Kit Juckes, of Société Générale. Spanish 10-year yields rose 14 basis points to 5.91 per cent while there was also selling pressure on Italian debt, where 10-year yields climbed 12bp to 5.58 per cent.
    http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/69dc2e80-82be-11e1-9242-00144feab49a.html#ixzz1rdfT86sl

    FTSE 100 hits lowest mark since January
    http://link.ft.com/r/TWK799/B5L5AG/3OWC3N/ZGM8RV/L9VWYJ/AZ/t?a1=2012&a2=4&a3=10


  165. Taxes/Kongen
     
    The Guardian is running coverage of this story including a readers' poll on this question. So far only 3% of readers profess to be as shocked as Chancellor Osborne. 97% take a more cynical view.


  166. Jobs: "3.6 million gained"
    As compiled by, "The bureau of labor statistics".
    No doubt this confirms the bias towards theBamster that many here have.  Believe that if that makes you happy. 
    But it's a Confabulation, a lie, a manipulation, a partial truth. 
    What it is NOT,  is 3.6 million actual jobs gained. You know, the ones where a person applying for, say, an  accounting job that has been empty because of a retirement or someone otherwise leaving the workforce.  That you can take to the Bank of America.
    This is known in the trade as a Political Statistic.  And as accurate and trustworthy as a poltician's promise.


  167. flip they have been reporting the same way regardless of party foreverrrrrrrrrr…but you are right would you like fries with that.