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Thrilling Thursday – S&P 2,000…. Again…

S&P 2,000 – YAY!!!

OK, I'm cheating, that's what I wrote on August 26th, when we first hit that mark.  At the time, everyone was in rally mode and our Big Chart looked like this:

Despite the HUGE rally signals, I remained skeptical (imagine that!) and said we needed to confirm 17,160 on the Dow and 11,000 on the NYSE before we even began thinking of looking for our real bullish goals of 1,200 on the Russell (the July high) and 17,600 on the Dow (the Must Hold line we have yet to have held).  As I said at the time:  "Until then, we need to be just a little bit cautious."

Turns out that cautious was a good play because, since then it was mostly downhill – until this week and our Big Chart now looks like this:

SPY 5 MINUTESo you can see why we're not terribly impressed with this Fed-induced rally and we're not impressed with yesterday's silly spike – especially with such erratic action.  On 8/26, I laid out my logic for you in the morning post and our shorting lines for the Futures were:

  • Dow (/YM) 17,058, bottomed at 16,839 on 9/11 – up $1,095 per contact 
  • S&P (/ES) 1,995, bottomed at 1,968 on 9/15 – up $1,350 per contract
  • Nasdaq (/NQ) 4,066, bottomed at 4,004 on 9/16 – up $1,240 per contract
  • Russell (/TF) 1,165, bottomed at 1,135 on 9/16 – up $3,000 per contract.  

As I mentioned in yesterday's post (and you can get these ideas delivered to you every morning, pre-market in addition to much more in our Live Daily Chat Room, by subscribing here) we called the dead bottom on Monday and we published our expected bounce lines for the week (in anticipation of a doveish Fed report) using our 5% Rule™, which were:

  • Dow 16,980 (weak) and 17,010 (strong) 
  • S&P 1,985 (weak) and 1,990 (strong) 
  • Nasdaq 4,560 (weak) and 4,570 (strong) 
  • NYSE 10,950 (weak) and 11,000 (strong) 
  • Russell 1,160 (weak) and 1,170 (strong)

RUT WEEKLYAs I reminded our Members yesterday afternoon, we're not going to be shifting more bullish (though we have been doing some bottom-fishing off this week's lows) until all we weak bounces and 4 of the 5 strong bounces are taken back.  Anything less than that will keep us bearish into the weekend and we STILL haven't had one full day where the S&P was over 2,000 – not one!  

It's going to be crazy into the weekend but, in our Live Chat Room this morning, I said to our Members:

Futures pumped back up to yesterday's highs at 17,125, 2,001.50, 4,080 and 1,156.5 so I like shorting below 17,100, 2,000, 4,075 and 1,155 – short the laggard, out of any of them cross back over – very simple! 

That's our plan into the weekend.  As I've mentioned before, we're also using DXD, TZA and SQQQ to hedge our long portfolios – just in case things unravel over the weekend.  We also discussed FXI puts earlier in the week as a play on China melting down so PLENTY of ways to profit from the downside.

HOPEFULLY (not a valid trading strategy) we won't need those shorts and we'll hold our levels and we can begin doing some more bottom-fishing using our Buy List.  But first – let's at least make the levels we've been looking for since August 26th – is that really too much to ask?  

153716 600 Clocking on in the Middle East cartoons

 


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  1. They had an analyst on at CNBC this morning that put a buy on Ali Baba with a 95 PT.  This was the same guy they had on at CNBC when twitter made that ridiculous run into the 70's and said they were going right to $150.  When asked why he thought that, he said they have a lot of users and they should do more ad revenue.  When asked about Ali Baba, he said they are one of the largest companies out there and should do better.  Very thoughtful and in depth analysis.


  2. Forgot, when Joe Kernen asked the analyst what happens if the stock opens over 100.  The analyst said he will revisit he price target.  Sticking to a discipline.


  3. Phil / OIH

    Good morning.

    On the OIH butterfly you suggest selling Jan’s so “we can ride out earnings”. Since I don’t think OIH has earnings, do you mean earnings season?


  4. Buffett live on Bloomberg. 


  5. Love this intro to Henry Blodget the best.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BljfhTfozXU

    Think all analysts should be introduced with their past history right or wrong.


  6. With Bloomerg and Blanfein and, for some reason, the Governor of Michigan – maybe they are going to buy Detriot?


  7. short /CL at $93.5 ?


  8. Below the line, yes.   

    I cashed out because I missed the start of the interview and now I'm catching up in the living room but I'm not comfortable being 10 feet away from my screen with open contracts in this market.  Was a good morning already…  


  9. Metals getting crushed again, no real demand – China stimulus being flushed down a financial black hole.   Property data was terrible overnight, losses could be staggering if this hits the fan.  

    Mike Bloomberg is brilliant, I wish he'd run for President.  


  10. Butterflies / Phil … is this strategy covered in the education archives? Just wondering how do you select the strike prices for the short term calls and puts each month? I have the WMT play.Thanks


  11. Good morning everyone,

    I have been a limited member here since last winter. Finally got to where I was averaging up on trading options mostly IWM and QQQ before I returned to my summer seasonal job, which is about to end. I have been anxious to get back to trading.

    I joined with full membership recently and got a little impatient. I don't have much capital, no big long term portfolio, just trying to build up a small account.

    I want to trade futures, but was not fully comfortable, so the last entry I made was on Tuesday, a SPY put at about 1996 level. I was trying to follow the bounce lines and looking for a dip back toward 1980 ish.

    One big issue I have is still setting stops and right now I can't sit in front of the puter and watch the chart so it is more like swing trading I guess. I decided after my experience last winter I need to put in a stop when I place a trade like this or I will end up losing it all, based on my experience and reading. Then I read here to caution about setting "hard stops" that they can see. So I figure that means set a mental one?

    Now, yesterday, if I was watching the chart before the fed released, I would have bailed on my SPY put near the low before the release. It would not have been a profitable exit, but more breakeven and protective. I was not watching though and let it ride and here we are. My option is a month out and now down more than what I would have wanted to stop out at.

    I feel like I just should not be playing until I can sit all day and watch, but it was so hard to read through the posts after work and not be in the game.

    Should I have just set a stop when I entered a trade like this under these circumstances? Is entering an SPY option trade really comparable to when you are trading ES futures? Would you just look for a dip today to bail on this trade,even if it were down 50%, or let it ride till next week?

    Sorry for the newbie questions and thanks for all your input as always.

    Brian


  12. Agriculture STILL falling.  

    10% drop in Unemployment Claims (280,000) is the kind of good news that's bad News as Yellen says economy will drive rates more than time.  

    Another police shooting in St. Louis. 


  13. Phil- Oil seems particularly bouncy this morning. Any idea about what is moving this market today? I am made the mistake of leaving my screen briefly at 8:30 and missed my exit, so I am now waiting for another move down. Any thoughts on why it shot back to 93.50 so fast and what is holding it up there right now? 


  14. Softbank initiated with a Buy at Jefferies; tgt $56.50 (39.89 


  15. hahahaha craig
    i was just going to ask the same thing. you think the giddiness will support /CL this week ?


  16. I sure hope not wombat, but I could use some help figuring out what to do next, bail or wait?


  17. I'm kicking myself for missing the move down at 8:30 EST but it happened so quickly that by the time I was ready to trade it had pooped back up so far I thought surely it would move back down too. As you said, giddiness appears to have set in.


  18. popped not pooped! 


  19. Good Morning!


  20. Oil Lines

    R3 – 96.76
    R2 – 95.91
    R1 – 94.27
    PP – 93.42
    S1 – 91.78
    S2 – 90.93
    S3 – 89.30


  21. Good morning, by the way!  

    We got $94.75 (our shorting line) again on /CLV4, that's still the contract we're using as I see some confusion as TOS has switched to November (/CLX4) as their default already.  /CLV4 expires on Monday so today is the last day to safely trade it (though "safe" and Futures are kind of mutually exclusive).  Oil is crazy volatile as it heads into expiration so be careful but, sometimes, we get some really dramatic falls and they still have about 60M barrels to get rid of by Monday and Nov is already stuffed – especially considering the low demand we've been seeing:

    Click for
    Chart
    Current Session Prior Day Opt's
    Open High Low Last Time Set Chg Vol Set Op Int
    Oct'14 93.97 94.45 93.62 94.33 07:03
    Sep 18


    -

    -0.09 14889 94.42 80669 Call Put
    Nov'14 92.82 93.36 92.49 93.26 07:03
    Sep 18


    -

    0.06 12173 93.20 280523 Call Put
    Dec'14 92.26 92.66 91.80 92.57 07:03
    Sep 18


    -

    0.07 3339 92.50 218013 Call Put
    Jan'15 91.70 92.24 91.44 92.14 07:03
    Sep 18


    -

    0.03 797 92.11 89428 Call Put

    OIH/Akad – Yes, I meant component earnings.  

    LOL Rustle – Look on Blodget's face was priceless.  

    Bob Pisani says all 10 of the sectors opened bullish and that's a great bullish sign.  I say all 10 were manipulated higher in no-volume pre-market trading so Pisani could herd the sheep in for the slaughter – let's see who's right by the end of the day…


  22. Phil/Blodget

    I can watch that over and over and laugh every time.


  23. SCO looks unhappy…hang in there since /CL moving down again?


  24. Butterflies/DM – I don't remember ever doing a big, specific thing on them.  Generally the criteria is stocks that pay well for front-month contracts but aren't actually that volatile over time.  Take WMT, for example, it's pretty violent, month-to-month but, over two years – it goes nowhere:

    So, with WMT at $76.50, we can buy the 2016 $65 puts for $1.85 and the 2016 $82.50 calls for $2.20 (since we think it's a bit more likely to go up than down) and those then act as stop-losses to short puts and calls we sell.  

    Those two contracts cost net $4.05 and we can then sell the Nov $77.50 calls for $1.10 and the $75 puts for 0.95 and now we've collected $2.05 in premium against our $4.05 entry (50%) using just 64 of the 483 days we have to sell (13%).  So we have 8 sales like that to make and, if we collect $16 in premium vs our $4.05 entry – we have an excellent chance of making money.

    If WMT is over $77.50, we owe the caller money but the short puts expire worthless and if WMT is under $75, we owe the short puts money but the calls expire worthless so we have $2.05 of leeway in either direction before we take a loss so our "safe" range for WMT is $72.95 to $79.55 – pretty much covering the channel's highs and lows.  

    If we have to roll, we roll to widen the spreads if possible but we also watch the range as a move up to $79 on so-so earnings (11/13) would probably lead us to bet the $80 line still won't break to the upside.  On the whole, if all goes well, this is the dullest strategy in the World!  


  25. Phil / BIDU – thanks for making me stick with the short Step 220 calls. It worked out nicely. The Oct 10 220 calls are $8, what's your thought on another round of short calls? 


  26. Well wombat I guess our question got answered both by Phil, pointing out volatility at expiration, and by the market dropping nicely over the last hour. Turned into a profitable morning. 


  27. Futures/Bmack – Make sure you hit our weekly Webinars (Tuesdays 1pm) as we do Futures there pretty often.  It's very important to paper-trade the Futures until you have a good amount of practice as they can rip your face off at a moment's notice in live trading.  

    We do NOT recommend leaving Futures trades on overnight (or even when you have to go to the bathroom) – generally they are momentum trades only so, when I discuss a short like the one above on the S&P at 1,995 that bottomed at 1,968 – that's only because I didn't make public picks from day to day, so we're summarizing.  What the S&P actually did for a month was this:

    Now, if you go to each day's chat, you'll see us calling the shorts over and over and over again during that period and taking advantage of the channel for mostly a lot of 10-point moves.  While it was certainly possible to just go short and hold your nose through the volatility – there's actually a lot more money to be made by day-trading.  While the overall move down made just $1,350 per contract – our multiple shorts made over $3,000 during the same period.  

    Getting the discipline to take those small gains (as little as $50) and get out and then wait for the next good opportunity is the most important thing to learn in trading futures (that and bladder control).  At our live Las Vegas Seminar (Nov 9th and 10th), we'll do a Futures trading workshop – people get a lot out of those.  

    Yes to mental stops, they have programs that will flush almost any hard stop you set.  Learning to ignore spikes is another important aspect of futures trading as you can't just stop out every time there's a quick tick against you but, on the other hand, you have to learn to quickly get out when there's a genuine turn in sentiment (like there is right now on the indexes after a nice move down to start).  

    One key thing we teach is not to use a single index for a stop but all of them.  So, when we got a cross today below 17,100, 2,000, 4,075 and 1,155, we are able to "short the laggard" (the last index to cross) and then we stay short until we see the other indices start to bounce and then we stop out of that one.  If ANY of the indexes get back over our short lines – we also get out.  

    This morning, we had great signals and the /TF shorts picked up $500 per contract from 1,155 to 1,150 where we KNOW it's going to bounce – so there's no need to risk the $500.  As it turned out, they all bounced around there – so very obvious signals.

    The key to a good futures entry is finding a place where you can CLEARLY see a stop line that won't cost you much – usually whole number lines.  For instance, oil (/CLV4) is testing $94 off our $94.75 short entry.  So we now set the stop at $94.25 but, if $94 holds – we take it off the table and then make a new bet BELOW the $94 line with a stop at $94(up to .05).  That way, we lock in our $750 gain and we don't mind losing up to $50 on another poke – better than being greedy and not selling at $750 and watching that profit disappear on a sudden move up.  

    If you can't afford to average into a large position, you should avoid news events like the Fed like the plague.  As you can see in the replay of Tuesday's Webinar – I was down about $2,500 on 10 /ES contracts I had worked into at an average of 1,993.50 and I was THRILLED to take the money and run at 1,990 ahead of the Fed – lucky to have a profit at all.  

    Had the market gone the other way and tested 2,000 ahead of the Fed, I was quite prepared to go to 20 at an average of about 1,996.75 and rode out the Fed, as I had a lot of conviction we'd end up lower (and we fell to 1,984 so DAMN!) but, as I had a small profit to lock in – I was VERY HAPPY to get that off the table and avoid the ulcer.  

    Anyway, don't rush into things.  Watch what we do and ask questions as they come up, especially in the Webinars, where I can show you exactly what I'm talking about.  


  28. Phil WMT need to correct sell Nov 75 PUT not call


  29. Phil,

    You said "Yes to mental stops, they have programs that will flush almost any hard stop you set".  Do you have any good links about this?  How would an instrument as large and liquid as /ES be moved for my measly 1 contract stop order?  Or are you saying any level with a large number of aggregate stops may get flushed? 


  30. spider00

    Your working against computers and they will rip you for one contract. Day trading never use stops, not just futures, even triple ETFs and options.


  31. BTU is getting hammered this morning.  Sold the Dec. 14 puts in the hope there is a bottom to this sell off.  


  32. Dollar coming down, but /NKD still up! Darn! :-(


  33. Phil

    1) TASR is off 3+ % again today , the PE is 45+ and an insider sold 100k + shares in last couple days. si the camera vest thing really enough of a winner to counter these things? 

    2) Do you think diagonal  Bull Put Spreads with the method you explained for WMT might work with AAPL, I think you've expressed not liking BPS but maybe if the backstop is gotten cheaply enough it's reasonable. 

    The AAPL Jan '16 85.71 Puts are $5.80, I would have 15 months to sell puts against that, for instance the Oct 10th 99 Puts for 0.98 cents. with delta .22


  34. Phil you love links and headlines!

    Instead of QE, the Fed Could Have Given $56,000 to Every Household in America

    http://finance.yahoo.com/news/instead-qe-fed-could-given-094500275.html


  35. Phil

    And for us that would solve all medical problems and money. Hell no must go to CEOs!


  36. BTU / Sibe – That's another one that seems to be cheap but get cheaper every day…


  37. Same thing wih ABX! All these commodities player getting hammered by the strong dollar it seems!


  38. Oil/Craigs – Sam thing that moves it every week before contract rollovers – they are trying to spike it up to set a price they can dump their contracts into before the roll.  It's a gigantic scam – same thing every month and it has noting to do with news or fundamentals – just manipulation, pure and simple.  That's why we love shorting these spikes, this is the time of month we get the most $1,000 winners (and occasional losers too!). 

    iOS/Shadow – Oh for God's sake, where do you find this nonsense?  They updated iOS 8 for existing 5 owners earlier this month and there were NONE of those problems. Do you not understand that there are people out there who are PAID to write any kind of negative articles they can about AAPL to try to manipulate the stock price.  Just because something is written, doesn't mean it's true – PLEASE try to use your head – you don't even have an iPhone, you have no experience with the product so how can you possibly determine if what you are sharing has any validity at all?  

    I know from polls in Vegas that about half our Members have iPhones and even more have iPads – has ANYONE had any trouble at all with iOS8?  

    There may be some problems with people who have old 16GB iPhones that are full of photos (as well as the U2 Album AAPL put on everyone's phone) but those are old phones and this is AAPL's subtle hint that it's time to upgrade.  The new OS is only 1.1GB not +5.8GB but it does need that room to swap stuff while loading.  The OS is not meant to run on a 4 and AAPL tells you as much if you have one.  

    BIDU/Phel – Rocky ride but glad it worked out.  You are done, I hope because BIDU may pop if Ali has a good IPO tomorrow.  I certainly would leave them alone for now but maybe if they go crazy they will make a nice short again next week.  

    WMT/Yodi – Thanks.  Dsylexia or Senility?  Hard to tell…

    Stops/Spider – Try these:  As to how, well most of the orders you see are fake, they are just HFT bots trading with themselves (hidden through various shells, of course) waiting for one live sucker to come in with real money that can be stolen.  Of course, during active trading on active instruments – that's far less likely to happen but, in thinly traded Futures at off hours – I've demonstrated this action live in Vegas.  Whether "THEY" will flush your stop or not depends on how profitable "THEY"think it would be to do so.  If they can, they will – simple as that.  

    Speaking of Futures, crazy up and down action so far.  

    BTU/Sibe – China slowdown is very bad for coal.  

    /NKD/Akad – Don't say darn, that's the opportunity.  You see something Fundamental that hasn't been widely traded yet.  /NKD is now at 16,165 and the high was 16,185 and it's $5 per point, per contract so I'm good to short 1 here and 1 at 16,175 to average 2 at 16,170 and then 2 more at 16,190 to average 4 at 16,180 and then 4 more at 16,200 for 8 at average 16,190 with a stop at 16,210 for a $160 loss.  

    That's my plan going in so I'm comfortable letting it play out.  At any time there's a pullback and I can get back to 1 contract at my new average, I do that and my ladder resets itself.  Since /NKD is up from 15,850 yesterday and I think the run-up to 16,200 is BS, I'm looking for a weak retrace of 20% of the 150-point run (30 points) to 16,170 and maybe a strong retrace to 16,140 in the very least.  

    Of course you have to keep close tabs on the Dollar (now 84.43) as your premise is that the move below 84.50 is not being recognized by the /NKD.  Also, if the Dow is strong, the Nikkei has a tendency to follow the Dow during the day more so than the Dollar.  


  39. Phil

    It was front and center when I turned on the computer this AM. I made no statement only passed on the link as it seems many members have IPhones. Yesterday you said post it and one of those was the AAPL release on the 6 and why they did not use Sapphire glass. Hey they didn't use it! Don't they need to say why. The BS yesterday was every one of those biased videos said not scratching period. I wasn't even the first to post the drop test failure although whoever did is afraid to admit it.


  40. Henry Blodget on CNBC, funny, didn't know that when I posted that clip.  CNBC didn't give him the same intro.


  41. Phil re: flushing stops, I wonder if you could play into the bots' hands, for example, put a sell order in above current market, wait for them to flush it, and once they do, put a buy order in below the market, see if they flush that too?  Probably too risky as it still wouldn't move as fast as the underlying, but I wonder if you could get better fills on the futures that way.


  42. Yesterdays stock of the day-GTAT

    Massive trade in the 2016 $7 puts.    3936 contracts …that would have to be a sale @ $1.15


  43. SHLD: Glad I stopped out a few days ago. On the, maybe temporary, express elevator to hell.

    Will be interesting to see if it rebounds after Eddie gets all he wanted to get.


  44. Phil / BIDU – When you mention I hope you are done, do you mean done with the Mar, 2015 bear put spread we have on BIDU as well which the short call was part of?


  45. Phil, STJ/BTU – BTU shares are trading at a 10yr low.  This is worth keeping an eye on since coal is still a major part of the global energy picture.  The Chinese just need to build a few more cities…


  46. TASR/Sn0 – It's not a trade, it's an investment and yes, I like holding it for 10 years if that's the question.  If the question is do I think it should be at $17 at this moment, then the answer is probably not.  In our Income Portfolio, we have 20 of the 2016 $10/15 bull call spread at $1.60 ($3,200) and we sold 20 of the 2016 $15 puts for $3.80 ($7,600) for a net $4,400 credit on 20 contracts.  So, to answer the question – "Do I think TASR will be higher than $15 or, in the very least, our 2016 break-even point of $12.80?" – ABSOLUTELY.  Do I give a flying crap what the stock does between now and then – not at all.  

    I'm not even saying it's a good entry yet, we want to see where it pulls back to.  We grabbed our spread back on July 29th, when the stock was around $12 so the 50% gain since then is merely amusing to us.  

    We LOVE TASR (it's our Stock of the Decade) but, until it fell way below $15, we had no interest in re-entering.  That's the purpose of the Buy List – we WATCH stocks we like and ONLY when they go on sale do we buy them.  The funny thing is – there's always something on sale!  

    And also – Counter what things?  This goes back to my Levis example.  I KNOW what TASR is worth ($15) so I don't care what the PRICE of TASR is at any given moment – much like I KNOW a pair of Levis is worth $40.  If an "insider" buys a pair of Levis for $50 or sells one for $30 – it doesn't change my opinion on what they are worth so if the PRICE goes to $50, I will sell and if the price drops to $30, I will buy because I understand the VALUE of my pair of jeans and I'm confident enough to keep them until it's a good time to sell.  

    Orders For Taser Cameras Rising In Wake Of Ferguson

     

    Taser International (NASDAQ:TASR) announced six new orders for its Axon body-worn video cameras and accompanying Evidence.com data collection and storage systems.

     

    Columbus, Miss. (50 cameras); Hayward, Calif. (150 cameras with five years of Evidence.com); and Muskogee, Okla. (73 cameras with five years Evidence.com) were among the cities adopting the on-officer cameras, which record data in the field that can later be used as evidence.

     

    The maker of Taser stun guns and other devices also received an order from Abu Dhabi for 60 Axon cameras. That city joins agencies in Argentina and others in the United Arab Emirates, which earlier placed orders.

    If your sole basis for buying a stock is because someone said so and you make your decisions to get in or out of the stock based on the actions of strangers – you may as well play roulette and just bet on whatever number has the biggest stack of chips because – "they must know something", right?  

    Sep 15, 2014 SMITH PATRICK WOfficer 115,000 Direct Sale at $17.91 per share. 2,059,650
    Sep 15, 2014 SMITH PATRICK WOfficer 148,200 Direct Option Exercise at $8.81 – $17.96 per share. N/A

    Maybe the headline should read – "Insider KEEPS 33,200 ($552.116) of the Shares he Exercised, Willing to Pay the Taxes Using the Proceeds of his Other Share Sales in Hopes that Stock has more Room to Run"  No, that would be too long a headline, wouldn't it?  

    Major Direct Holders (Forms 3 & 4)
    Holder Shares Reported
    SMITH PATRICK W 796,175 Sep 15, 2014

    AAPL/Sn0 – AAPL is too volatile.  We try to avoid stocks that don't have a predictable channel.  Also, long options are relatively expensive and certainly not appropriate for that sized portfolio ($100K).  Volatile stocks like AAPL look very tempting for those kind of plays but you won't understand why you shouldn't do it until you get burned by one so I do encourage trying it with one contract and seeing how it goes – as long as you REALLY want to own 100 share of AAPL for $85.71 plus any losses you may incur in the front month.  

    QE/Shadow – Yep, tragic.  Well, they did give money to every household in America – the ones they cared about, anyway.  

    $64.3Bn was JUST 2012 income for the top .001%, $22M each in income vs $2,025.50 each for the bottom 10%.  Raising the top tax bracket to 70% for people earning over $10M a year would burden this group by $19.3Bn and would leave them with "just" $15.4M, only $300,000 a week to spend rather than $423,000 but those sacrifices by 3,000 people would improve the standard of living of 23M people by 50%.  Amazingly, it will never happen – not without a violent revolution, anyway.  

    Commodites/StJ – China demand is down and down.  


  47. Butterfly Phil … thanks for that explanation. Much appreciated. I am in the same WMT play as you had on the portfolio. I presume you moved up to the $77.50 put from the Sept $75 put to try move with the share price which has increased since last month from when we opened the trade around $74.50 to today's price around $76? Moving up in strike on the put means we have to pay more for the share if put to us. Although by sticking with the $75 calls we are effectively collecting the 90c net premium to cover that increase in put strike. Oh, I think I get it. Thanks


  48. BTU … Goldman cuts rating to SELL .. sets price target at $13 (nearly there!) …nice long term entry methinks but a bumpy ride no doubt :)


  49. Got a laugh out of your "time to upgrade " from aapl. Msft did the same thing to us with our old, reliable XP systems who millions of us still have & use. If you try to upgrade they come on & try to sell you their latest window 8, 10.  whatever. And our old laptops can't take the "new" versions. I told everyone to just keep using the XP version & not to update. The XP always worked all over the world while the smartphones & others did nothing. I get aggravated with all the new gadgets that do everything EXCEPT the major purpose you have them and charge a freaking fortune for the newest trendy "must have" that you have to be a genius to figure out how  to use. What happened to "keep it simple stupid." Only thing we have in aapl is the Ipod our son sent us & we get along fine without the rest. I do have to say the Msft tablet at less than $ $400 is very good & light for lugging all over. I'm too Scotch to pay those nosebleed prices for aapl & I don't care about impressing anyone! I think aapl is a generation X Y or Z thing. And I hate that they don/t interface with MSFT.


  50. Futures/Phil – that was an excellent, concise lesson above. A keeper. Thank you.


  51. Phil  >> /CL in no mans land -
    Play law of big numbers ?


  52. Nice drop on oil now, heading to $93.  This is the best time of the month to trade it.  


  53. private

    I have an old XP computer, actually the PS blew and replaced it from another with a funked out processor. My CAD programs won't run on 7 or maybe it's 64 Bit, don't care as even they won't say I should just buy their new wing ding program and none will run on an AAPL. What you would like is windows 7, easy to learn from XP. A kit and 7 professional is inexpensive, the mass guys won't load 7.


  54. It amazes me how the analyst ratings work. Usually they cut a rating to sell just as they are bottoming and in reality becoming a buy! The reverse is true as they will rate a stock a buy after a massive run up and the price targets usually are complete BS pulled out of a hat. Ridiculous. 

    BTU/Phil- would this be another trade to just wait until 2016 and see where we are then. I am talking about your trade back around August 26 or 27 to buy 13/18 BCS and sell the 15 puts. I assume for now we wait and see if coal recovers some in the interim, or is it wrong for me to assume? 

    Pirate- I am a long time PC guy, but my kids have macs and I use my iPad a lot. The apple products are just much more reliable and have very few if any glitches, whereas my msft and android devices constantly freeze and need to reboot, or I have virus attacks that need to be flushed out or programs are not compatible, with whatever version I'm running, etc. also when Office became Mac friendly it solved most of my issues going back and forth. Once my excel spreadsheets could be opened on my iPad and word could be read on the kids macs we had no issues. So, I like PC and android because I am cheap, but Apple is definitely easier for non tech oriented people to use and has much less problem working with networks in the home as well as being less buggy. That's my opinion, I could be wrong. 


  55. Phil/TASR-- Nothing like the unvarnished voice of experience lol.

    I do see the 15/20 Jan '15 BCS is still profitable. Thanks for explaining the insider share holdings factors and the camera orders coming in. 


  56. AAPL (I'm long ;-) Here in the third world, the young people I know who are barely subsisting have heard of the iPhone 6 release and one already inexplicably HAS one. I think Microsoft would have fairly vague brand recognition with them, especially with the girls. The billions buying or wanting to buy Applegadgets here vastly outnumber those who even know what XP is/was. 


  57. TASR/ I read somewhere, cannot for the life of me find it now, that TASR's biggest profits (for cameras) will come from after-purchase sales, such as software and equipment upgrades, service, etc.

    Phil/ FXI/ Did you suggest a trade for FXI? Flirting with 50 day and at top of range. Crapshoot or reasonable? 


  58. The last few times the Fed had minutes we went up that day and followed through the next day but then believe we fell back a little after that.


  59. Financials strong again.


  60. Phil

    did we roll the FAS  ?

    Thanks


  61. It is slightly unconventional, or you must delete the sell you ware everything but MSFT doesn't get infections more than AAPL, what they do is let marketing profiling through especially their own. The most annoying is click a site including many of Phil's news links and you can't go back to where you were. That may happen on AAPL and it may be they detect that I don't have their service or allow tracking/profiling.


  62. craig

    That may be what you call lock up?


  63. Blodget/Rustle – I think those guys are interpreting the SEC guidlines to mean they have to warn viewers about his record.  Will be interesting to see if he withdraws now or whether the networks will do it to other violators they interview.  

    Stops/Pwright – Yes, that's a great way to get better pricing but it's not technically legal so I do not talk about it.  What they do isn't legal either, but that doesn't seem to stop them, of course.  You can have endless fun playing games with the bots late at night, when it's just you and them trading.  

    GTAT/Stock – Struggling to hold that $12 line at the moment.  

    SHLD/JBur – It's too much of a moving target to value now.  With a stock as complicated as Sears, you don't have to understand all the holdings if you can look back on a 10-year history and see what MASSIVE amounts of traders thought they were worth through thick or thin.  It at least gives you some idea of the value of the company.  The mistake a lot of chart people make though – is looking at TA for a company like this that has CHANGED itself so drastically, that it is not the same company that has been charted for the last 10 years.  

    For one thing, they spun out Land's End, which has $1.5Bn in sales and $150M in pre-tax profits.  SHLD has $36Bn in sales and a $900M loss so losses up 20% from $750M to $900M without LE and sales down 5%.

    On LE, we can see the direct impact but also, during the last year, they have been selling off other assets and properties so there's no reason to expect SHLD to get back to higher levels because it no longer has the same stuff it had when it was at those higher levels.  There's no bargains to be had here and it's too difficult to figure out what's left to do a proper value analysis.  I think that's also been a purposeful action on Eddie's part, as prior valuation studies had driven the price high and I do believe he wants the stock low so he can accumulate more but I'm not anxious to jump in here.  

    BIDU/Pfehl – No, with naked short calls.  By March, I still like that target and would likely buy back the short puts if they punch higher.  

    BTU/Sibe – While I don't mind taking a poke at them down here, there's no good bottom in site if China is slowing down and other countries are steering towards cleaner energy.  Instead of spending Billions on lobbyists to allow them to keep polluting, the coal companies could have spent billions on R&D to find a way to clean up coal emissions – then they'd have a viable business.  

    Butterfly/DM – See, it's good to let me sleep on a question like that!  cool  To be clear, we are selling, in that example, the Nov $77.50 CALLS and the Nov $75 puts, so we hope WMT falls between the two and both short positions expire worthless.  That's what we do each cycle, try to pick a reasonable range for the next cycle but always trying to sell as much premium as we can as well.  What I discussed above is NOT a change to the Butterfly Portfolio – just an example of how I'd trade a new one today.  

    CNBC says 10% of Americans have gone to work stoned.  I have never done that but I have been at work and had my boss get me stoned – does that count?  That was back in High School, when I worked in a Stereo Store – all the customers were stoned so I don't think it mattered much….

    Upgrades/Pirate – It's not like they stop you from keeping the old OS and the old computer but, if you want all the fancy bells and whistles then yes, you need a faster computer.  I don't know why people get so upset about that.  I agree that, as a consumer, the constant upgrade cycles can be maddening but I only get a new phone when my old contract expires and then I give my phone to Tina and her phone goes to Maddie and Maddie's phone goes to Jackie and Jackie's phone goes to one of her less fortunate friends – so I'm fine with the cycle as it goes but, if it were all up to me – I'd probably still have my old, Motorolla Razr – I loved that phone!  

    Thanks Scott. 

    Big Numbers/Wombat – If you mean short at the $94 line as I indicated earlier then yes, that's our default move (assuming we're short).  Bear in mind that $93.50 is $92.50 on /CLX4 so that's super-significant and we don't really think that will fail (though it's failing now at $93.32/92.23) into the weekend so a good place to take profits though I'm not keen on going long down here.  

    /CL/Bruce – As above, very tight stops down here (should be out now over $93.25) as that was below $92.50 on the new contract – a bit too low. 

    Analysts/Craigs – Now you are catching on!  cheeky  On BTU, I wouldn't do anything until I can see what 2017 short puts look like.  There's nothing too sexy about selling the 2016 $13s for $11 as they may be $11 before they are through.  I do think $15 is the right price over the long-term, but that doesn't mean it's your job to catch the knife while it's falling in the short run.  

    I'd rather sell the 2016 $15 puts, now $3.15, for $2.50 AFTER I see BTU put on a good base than sell the $13 puts for $2 today, not knowing where they will find a bottom.  When sentiment goes against something – especially when a major house like GS chases people out of the stock – it can take days to fully unwind – even if they are dead wrong on their call.  

    Macs/Craigs, Pirate – I also was a PC guy until I had kids.  I got Maddie an iMac when she was 3 so she could watch DVDs and play games.  She was able to load things herself and before Jackie was 2, Maddie had taught her how to use it as well.  That computer lived on the floor and lasted until Maddie was 10 with all sorts of food and drinks spilled on it and covered in stickers and glue and God knows what else happened to that poor thing (very often kicked and dropped).  Eventually, it was the drive that gave out and it simply wasn't worth fixing but what a machine!  That led me to get an IMac for myself as a side computer when I got a new one for the kids so I could learn to support it for them.  Then the IPhones and iPads came out and they magically synch with the iMacs and they all work great together and we've never had a virus or a crash for that matter (and the very few times I have had a reason to call support, they were fantastic) so yes, we like macs now.  

    You're welcome Sn0.  The things we put in the LTP and the Income Portfolio (and items on the Buy List) are long-term trade ideas.  While we try to buy them when they are low in their channels, we don't tend to worry about them much, especially in the first year.  If they go down 40%, we'll probably roll and/or double down (unless the fundamentals have changed, like SHLD) – other than that, we don't generally worry about them at all.  Also be mindful that we ALWAYS scale in to long-term positions (see Strategy Section), so we never take any position size we aren't prepared to double down twice on.  

    AAPL/Sn0 – Good point. They put a MSFT store in the Garden State Plaza (maybe 10th biggest mall in America) and it's huge and has a fantastic corner spot where a lot of people go between the food court and the movies and it's EMPTY.  In fact, it looks silly because it's all glassy so you see all these empty tables and a lot of blue-shirts standing around with nothing to do.   In that same mall, you have to go way down one of the wings to find the AAPL store and it's a mob scene with about 3/4 customers and 1/4 sales people all over the place and almost every table is full of people playing with the devices.  

    Disclosure – I'm long AAPL (Duh!)

    ISIS/Scott – We trained those guys to fight Saddam, now we are training Syrians to fight ISIS and, 10 years from now, we'll be training someone to fight the Syrians when they turn on us.  

    TASR/Griffin – Yes, it's like TIVO, they sell the cameras but then there's a subscription service to manage the recordings that ends up costing 10x what the cameras cost.  

    FXI/Griffin – I still think China might blow up in the next month or two so I like the trade but it's a gamble.  

    FAS/QC – Yes, I must get to the portfolios now.  



  64. Phil / RAD – getting hammered today on poor 2015 outlook.  You really have to take profits when a stock like this gets ahead of itself.  I did not play this stock but the chart action reminded me of my experience with owning PLUG, albeit RAD took more than a year to play out while PLUG's run was about 4 months.   I did ride PLUG up from around 2 to 10 and was fortunate to get all out above 10. I figured why stick around when the stock hit my target (10) way too quickly and was not paying a dividend.  It was still hard to sell at that moment.  I had to beat myself over the head basically and repeat Phil's "take profits" mantra.  I could have sold calls but decided to keep things simple as I have to report all my trades.  


  65. Blame game antics. This AM Jackson Hole Daily from the AP said the contaminated I PN and TX water was not from fracking but poor well construction. So it's OK now as long as you don't use the water! In Pavilion WY the problem was the federal investigation now taken over by the state. The water table is only 1,000 feet versa 1 mile from the wells so they drilled 750 foot water wells to test. Red states know how to pass a test engineered to end in passing. The kids all have 4.0 GPAs


  66. Phil:  Ah, the flipphone.  Nothing more satisfying that ending a call with a snap.  I miss my Motorola.  My first phone.

    Hanging up touching an icon is not the same.


  67. re: AAPL, FWIW, I will go to China and Vietnam in October, my Vietnam agent asked me to bring him an iphone 6plus if I'm able to get one.  I can't think of how many times I've brought iphones, ipads, etc. to people when I take trips to Asia, but it's always Apple products, never Samsung or any of the others.  Seems there's still a lot of power in the brand, although I know in China there are a lot of really cheap competitors who supposedly put out a pretty good product..


  68. MSG getting a big selloff spike in volume?


  69. SNV – someone bought 2,642 Oct 25 call options on Synovus today. WAY outsized option interest for this company. whats up?


  70. Those September calls on JPM that we left open on the butterfly play are killing us today.


  71. /CL failing 92


  72.  Scottmi – Interesting.  Hope it's a takeout.  I have a small position in the stock.


  73. sco jumping!


  74. AMBA - ATH.


  75. Long-Term Portfolio Update (LTP):  Up $21.2% not too shabby and down from a 22% max last week.  Still, we aren't in these for the day trades and, as long as we're holding our Must Hold lines and as long as the STP is protecting us from the dips, we have nothing to worry about here.  

    • ABX – Beaten up with gold, no change in long-term outlook.  Not worth rolling as the 2017 $17 puts are only $3.35 so our puts look like a good deal.  In fact, since the April $17 puts are $1.98 ($1 premium with 210 days to go) I think the spread of buying the underpriced 2017 $17 puts for $3.35 and selling the overpriced 2016 $17 puts for $2.70 for net 0.65 is a very good spread.  
    • BBBY – On track
    • CCJ – On track.  Waiting for Japan to restart reactors.  
    • EGLE – I don't like the restructuring deal so we'll take a loss on these and give up.  What's happening is you get stock in the new company and warrants to buy more stock for 7 years and it could be a good deal but it's way too messy to track.  The actual price of the short puts is $1.60 and we sold them for $1.30 so not worth the hassle of riding it out for $1,500.  
    • HOV – We sold the $5 puts for 0.95 and a net $4.05 entry and the stock is at $4.05 but the puts are showing $1.65 which would be net $3.35 so .70 of premium in that price.  If anything, I'm tempted to sell more but let's wait for the 2017s to come out.  
    • IBM – On track
    • RIG – Yuch but no 2017s yet.  
    • SGEN – On track.
    • TWX – On track.
    • WEN – On track
    • WFM – On track.

    So, throwing out EGLE and assuming HOV and RIG make no money but struggle back, there's about $20,000 to be made between now and Jan 2016 if these short puts simply stay above the strikes we sold.  As long as our Must Hold lines keep holding, that is like money in the bank!  

    • AAPL – Nice, straightforward $20 put that's 100% in the money but only showing $11.60.  That means, if AAPL stays over $100, we have another $16,800 coming from that one.   
    • CIM – On track and good for a new entry
    • NLY – On track and good for a new entry.  
    • AAPL – This one we managed to sell puts on and our strike is way down at $90 but we have another $5,775 coming to us if AAPL manages to hold $90 – still a good pay-off, even if taken brand new.  
    • CLF – These guys are a rough ride but I like them.  
    • GTAT – Good for a new entry but I'd sell the $17 calls and the $12 puts instead.  Not worried enough to adjust ours as our worst-case is 1,000 assigned at net $15.60 ($15,600) so, if they drop to $8 and we DD, we'd own 2,000 at an average of $11.80 and then we could sell the 2016 $10 puts and calls for about $5 (all the 2016 combos are now over $6) and that would drop our net to $6.80/8.40 on 4,000 for $33,600 of exposure ($16,800 of margin).  Hardly seems like anything to worry about, does it?  
    • I think this is something I have trouble conveying to people – when we enter 10 GTAT contracts at $15, I REALLY would like to own 4,000 shares at $8.40. REALLY.  If I don't get to own it at $8.40, then I get the cash as a consolation prize but I'm certainly not going to be upset if they go down when I'm only 1x into the stock (since I don't think the long-term Fundamentals have changed).  
    • LULU – On track.  I WISH we got more!  
    • TASR – On track.  
    • TM – On track. 
    • WFM – On track.

    There's about $50K to be made to the upside here if all works out, plus the $20K from the short puts and $16K from AAPL means we have $86K scheduled for next year.  That's not going to make our 20% goal so it is going to be time next week – as long as the market is not crashing, to get a bit more aggressive and add some long-term plays.  Other than the short puts, we only have 9 stocks in the portfolio!  

    The short puts are our initial pokes at stocks we are thinking about, if they get very cheap (like HOV or RIG) and we get assigned, THEN we may turn them into long-term plays.  As I noted with GTAT above, we WANT to own the stock cheaply.  

    So in RIG, for example, we sold the 2016 $33 puts for $3.05 for a net $29.95 entry.  The stock is at $34.73 but if, for example, it fell to $20, then we'd own 1,000 shares at net $29.95 and we could then sell 2017 $25 puts and calls for perhaps $6 and then we'd have a commitment to 2,000 shares at net $23.95/24.48 and then, if those 2,000 shares were assigned and we sold the 2019 $20 puts and calls for $5, our new basis would be $19.48/19.74 on up to 4,000 for $78,964 if all assigned.  

    So let's say we then own RIG for $78,964.  They currently pay a $3 per share dividend.  That alone would be $12,000 a year (15%) – even if the dividend was cut in half, that would be great!  Also, even if we don't want to sell puts anymore, we will still be able to sell 2021 $22 calls for $2 and that would drop $8,000 in our pocket (10%), we still get the dividend and, if called away, another $8,000 (10%).

    That's all against a max allocation, after having to double down twice, of less than $40,000 of our $1M buying power.  That's what I mean when I say I am disappointed when we get called away with a lousy $3,500 profit if RIG hods $33!  


  76. Plugged in Alibaba (BABA) on my market monitor screen.  Should start trading sometime tomorrow morning.


  77. Have to take a long poke on oil at $93 (/CLV4) – I figure that was panic selling into the NYMEX close (2:35) as people have to dump out of their contracts and they'll try to bring them up again for tomorrow.   /CLX4 is down at $92 – very bad break if they can't get back over $92.50.  

    Cashing in SCO, of course!  $30s at $.50.


  78. yes i did too, thanks phil for SCO!


  79. Jimbo on board for Alibaba:

    Cramer says the stock will not be expensive if it opens at $80 because it would still be cheaper than most other Internet companies he follows, with the exception of Baidu  (BIDU) . He also says not to worry about the convoluted ownership because dozens of media companies have similar structures


  80. Phil

    I read papers, watch network news, and the internet. Mostly they all have a different view and I tend to not believe anyone. What about Martin Wolf? His book worth getting?

    http://finance.yahoo.com/news/after-financial-crisis--we-didn-t-change-anything-profoundly--wolf-164224399.html


  81. Phil – thank you for the portfolio reviews!  Very informative, as always — it's great to read the details of the plans for the next several moves.

    Can you double-check the math on the RIG writeup?  I think it ends up being around $78,960 for 4000 shares instead of $39,482 if all puts are assigned.  It's still a good deal, of course.  Thanks!


  82. RAD – probably be a following dip tomorrow.. but unless they are declaring bankruptcy a Jan2016 $5 call paired with a short April $6 call for .80 (and cheaper if dips tomorrow) makes an easy return even if stock takes forever to recover. pick a stop such as closing under $5 for a tight restraint and 10 of them is easy to do, for very little risk.   I'm going to watch to see if they hold 5 tomorrow..


  83. Anyone playing speculative BABA IPO with naked yahoo calls?


  84. Bloomberg/Albo – He was a great mayor.  We need a President who understands economics.  Lots of things about him not to like but, for a Republican – not bad…

    RAD/Terra – I could have told you that, the real estate market SUCKS!  Good point on taking those profits, as I was saying above, you have to know the value of your stock so you know when it's cheap AND when it's expensive.  

    Fracking/Shadow – I am very concerned it's just a facade to hide the fact that they are purposely contaminating the water tables.  

    Flip/Malsg – Also, it was better at being a phone!  I wish I had a nickel for every time I or the person I'm talking to has to say "what?"

    AAPL/Pwright – Interesting.  

    MSG/Scott – Not that big. SNV just up 1% with other financials.  I don't see anything special going on but maybe people betting they finally beat $25. 

    JPM/Butterfly, Palotay – Well, win some, lose some on those, maybe better tomorrow but I doubt it.  

    You're welcome Abseth.  

    Cramer/Albo – That guy never met a Momo he didn't like.  I guess it gets the viewers.  

    Wolf/Shadow – I'll read anything, more points of view give us better overall perspective.  

    RIG/Jersey – Ouch, bad math!  Well, that means we'd certainly be more careful before pulling the trigger to DD our commitment on a pullback.  Of course, if we are worried about too much commitment, we would start by first rolling the short puts.  Look at the RIG Jan $37 puts, they are $2 in the money and $3.75.  The 2016 $30 puts are $3.30 so, for 0.40 (and we still have the $3 we sold the $37 puts for!), we roll down 20% in strike to the $30 puts and our net entry on the first 10 would drop from net $34 to net $27.60.  

    That means, if we started at $40 selling 10 $37 puts for $3, we end up with the $30 puts sold for net $2.60.  Only if the stock drops so fast we can't roll are we forced to DD (or take a loss) – otherwise, we can just reduce our basis until we finally get to a price we like enough to commit more capital to (or the puts expire worthless).


  85. YHOO/Abseth:

    We have several official plays on YHOO, wh/ so far are doing really well.

    Buying calls is an expensive way to play with IV's of 103% (1 day), and 70% (29 days). Even if you get a good positive move in the stock, the IV crush could kill you in the trade…. Just saying.


  86. Phil // BABA
    Just curious, what are your thoughts on a BABA straddle ?


  87. Sn0 / Apple 3rd World — Same phenomenon in my neck of the LDCs.  Guys with no house, no car, cheap motorbike, cheap watch….Apple phone.  I can only guess that 1/ it's related to reproduction, as with most male plumage, 2/ it confers the biggest bang [no pun intended] for the reproductive buck.  The house, if owned, would not appear in Architectural Digest, nor the car on the cover of Car & Driver, and a fake Rolex wouldn't fool anyone even under disco lights, but an Apple phone puts you Even Steven with billionaire who owns one.  AAPL buybuybuy.


  88. Jbur: i know it's just speculative. However, i am not looking to make money of volatility rather from the intrinsic value of the call. Anything less than blockbuster IPO will kill these call, for sure. Risk:Reward ratio is appealing though!


  89. zero // 1%
    i keep saying Apple has to do more Black Diamond Editions.
    I don't want to have the same phone as my neighbor, said the Sneech.


  90. Phil:- Any thoughts on BABA ipo?



  91. re: JPM, yeah, I had to stop out of that trade.  Looks like it could go from bad to worse with earnings coming up, the $.40 dividend can create trouble with short calls on ex div date.

    Zero, where are you, it is Colombia is that right?  Man I'd love to get down there, my daughter is in the Spanish immersion program at school, I've been sort of getting into it.  I'm getting tired of Asia quite honestly, I've been trying to avoid going and haven't been there for about a year, same hotels and traffic, dusty factories.  But yeah, it's the iphone you've got to have, when you're stuck in traffic for 3 hours each way, Singapore noodles at the international hotel :)


  92. Yahoo's value according to Alibaba share price. A nice read:http://seekingalpha.com/article/2372685-cashing-in-on-the-alibaba-ipo-with-yahoo-call-options


  93. Short-Term Portfolio Update (STP):  Wow, this really proves the rule of thumb that, when you are up 50% in a portfolio in less than a year – TAKE IT OFF THE TABLE!!!  Now we're only up 30% and the LTP hasn't gone anywhere so now we're down to the combined $735,000 danger zone at which we may be too bearish.  Unfortunately, into the weekend, I'm not inclined to make changes.  Our high was a bit over $745K combined so not a tragic mismatch – but we do like to make progress each week. 

    • CAKE – Improving.
    • DXD – Ouch!  Still, way out in Oct.  We were greedy because we doubled down at .50 and it hit .70 but we stayed in and then it went the other way.  I think it's worth spending 0.25 to roll down to the Oct $24s at this point ($5,000).  
    • SQQQ – Since we have 200 DXD Oct $24s (after the roll), there's no need for these at the moment.  We'll keep them over the weekend but look to lighten up next week.  If the market isn't down by mid-Oct, I don't think it will go down into Christmas.  
    • GMCR – Oh I'd like to buy more of these!  
    • XLE – How is this only $2.18?  If oil keeps going lower, so will XLE but let's ask for $2.50 and see if it fills.   
    • XRT – Disappointing action and we'll have to close it tomorrow, stop at $3.50 at this point.  
    • RIG – Not worried but this should shift to the LTP
    • YHOO – Tomorrow is the big day.  We're up almost $5,000 but we could end up $16,000 so no point in closing this – it's still a good deal!  
    • XRT – This one is fine so far.  
    • ARO – On track but why is a 2016 spread in the STP?  Let's move it to the LTP.  Actually, it was in there because it was considered very risky when we took it and we were worried we'd have to adjust – now it seems like it's finding it's footing and we can pay less attention to it (LTP). 
    • BIDU – Wheeee!  We did it!  So glad we held those short puts.  Stop on those at $1 but they should expire worthless and maybe we will consider buying back those $185 puts if BIDU goes crazy on the AliBaba IPO news.  If not though, then this is a good hedge to our long YHOO play.  
    • FAS – It sucks when that happens on the last day.  The short Sept $100s are $11.20 and I think we'll get a bit of a pullback but we can't risk too much so let's roll our 10 short Sept $100s ($11,200) to 15 short Oct $105 calls at $7.75 ($11,625) for about even and we'll sell 10 Jan $95 puts for $4 ($4,000) and put a stop on the 10 short 2016 $62.50 puts at $6, but I doubt those will be hit. If FAS goes over $115, we'll have to add another long bull call spread, but it's already paid for by the short puts.  
    • SLW – I certainly still like this play.  In the STP because it's volatile and we may still need to adjust it.  
    • TSLA – Annoying premium but $15,000 to be gained if TSLA finishes Jan between $140 and $275.  If not – RAWHIDE!  

    Not bad for a portfolio that's supposed to be losing money when the LTP is making money but, as I noted in the LTP, we need to make sure it's doing its job and making enough money to cover the potential losses on our short-term hedges as well as staying on track for 20% gain.  At a combined (barely) $735,000, we're up 22.5% for the year with 3.5 months to go – I'll be disappointed if we can't get over 27% now ($762K), so there's still work to be done.  


  94. BABA/Wombat – What are you talking about, they don't even have options yet.  If they did have options, I wouldn't want to play them because the price can go up and down 50% in a day and you won't even know why it's happening.  

    AAPL/ZZ – While I agree it's a status symbol, there may be a quality issue as well.  A Rolex is also a good watch, a Mercedes is also a good car, etc – it's not ALL about the status.  

    BABA/Abseth – I think our YHOO play will do great.  

    AAPL/Albo – How is GOOG's refresh going?  IBMs? JPMs? HPQ? GE? GM? VZ? FB? TWTR? Why is it that only AAPL is constantly criticized for not wowing people with brand new stuff – even as they concede that the new versions are huge improvements.  More things to distract traders with short attention spans while investors steal their shares.  

    LOL Abseth – Only took them 7 years to catch on to my valuation premise!  All should read this – this is what I mean when I say it's good to have a FUNDAMENTAL long-term view on a stock.  

    We've stayed bullish on YHOO for 7 years based on their ownership of Alibaba and, when it got cheaper – we bought MORE!!!   Along the way, we have been able to make money on buy/writes and short puts over and over and over again while we waited, patiently, for analysts to see what we said 7 years ago. 


  95. Phil – I wasn't endorsing that guy's views.  I'm long AAPL. ;-)


  96. Phil water

    What really shocked me was the article made it sound like the water is fine, when in reality the water was bad just not from fracking. Who gives a shit why the water is bad when we know drilling for oil or gas caused it. Scary thing is if you don't read the entire article you miss how ridiculous their point is and as you know very few read and most that do only headlines.

    Called the library about the book, they don't have it but Gretchen likes me and is at the top of the chain.


  97. Phil // BABA
    Ah, I thought I heard that they had options available. Anyway the thought was exactly that, big swing one way or the other.

    Come on Jersey Socialist – of course its about status !! I know you want that Black Diamond.


  98. thanks phil!


  99. Means/Albo – Just pointing out why it's ridiculous.  

    Water/Shadow – I think we may be the 2nd to last generation that will be able to enjoy a long, hot shower without worrying about the cost.  

    Alibaba/Terra – Hey, I wouldn't buy that thing either.  That's why I like the side bet with YHOO. 

    Black diamond/Wombat – I'm embarrassed enough when people make a big deal about my Amex card – not my kind of thing.  

    You're welcome Abseth. 


  100. Phil A yes vote for Scottish independence seems unlikely, but if it occurs could we see a major down move in the US markets?


  101. wombat

    This is just gut feeling but what I expect is opens high and goes down. Really that is about all one can use for analysis.


  102. /CL Phil do you still like this for a long poke overnight? It has drifted down just a tiny bit since 3PM, so I was just curious if you expected it to happen quickly or over the course of the evening I guess. 


  103. Phil AMEX card

    You must be informed that every time you use it your screwing the merchant, use VISA or MC.



  104. Wombat video—WTF is that?


  105. Another NFL related story.  Been quite a few weeks.  I say fire Goodell and bring back 77-year old Peter Ueberoth !  Does anyone  actually believe that they didn't have access to the Ray Rice video early on?

    http://sports.yahoo.com/news/elway-son-pleads-guilty-domestic-160823742--nfl.html


  106. Thanks for your detailed response earlier Phil!


  107. Scotland/Den – We won't know for sure until tomorrow afternoon but what does anyone really care about whether Scotland is part of the UK or the EU?  I can't see anything "major" from that decision either way. 

    /CL/Craigs – I'm leaving my 2 at $93.035 but boy will I be pissed if I lose money because oil hits my $85 target and I'm on the wrong side!  This is a straight-up bet on my faith in the manipulators.  

    AMEX/Shadow – Yes, I'll rip it up right away.  Oops, can't – titanium… cheeky

    Diamonds/Wombat – just on the soles of my shoes.

    You're welcome Bmack.


  108. Digging through the Philly Fed numbers:

    http://www.bespokeinvest.com/thinkbig/2014/9/18/philly-fed-slightly-weaker-than-expected.html

    Areas seeing the biggest improvement were Number of Employees, Unfilled Orders, and Shipments, while Average Workweek and Inventories saw the largest declines.  It's interesting to see that while employers are adding more workers, the employees are working less.  It's only one datapoint, but it might be a by-product of the Affordable Care Act's requirements that all employees working more than 30 hours per week be covered with health insurance.  One way around that requirement is for companies to hire more part-time workers, which is what appears to be happening in this month's report.

    Don't know about the number of hours excuse. But the numbers are everywhere – Empire state beats by a mile, claims this morning are the lowest in 10 years for that week and then the Philly Fed is weaker. We have to be somewhere in between I guess!


  109. albo

    conviction goes away but arrest record is for life, even the dropped assault charge. It may come up every time he is stopped by the police, even when he is 100 years old. That is what is wrong, the cops arrest your screwed even false arrest. Take the military stuff also, newspaper today is explaining to all that it was an exercise yesterday even the smoke at the airport!


  110. Phil titanium, strong but breaks, just hit with a hammer!


  111. Scotland/Phil

    Will have an effect on the pound tomorrow and not sure what if anything that will do to the dollar and what that will do to our markets.


  112. Interesting day with a Global market rally and oil falling 1.5% along with almost all other commodities.  Of course there's only so much gas the top 0.001% can put into their jets…

    Hit it/Shadow – Apparently I can hit it with my Sapphire iWatch! 


  113. Shadow – I would be very surprised if Elway's son's record wasn't expunged.


  114. RUT spent all day just to get back to where it started at 1,155.  /ES just under 2,005, /YM 17,182, /NQ 4,100 was a great short before but at least that's up for the day.  


  115. beware those diamonds (and pearls)

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZEbBIswSsEA


  116. albo

    I understand why you think that and everything but arrest will go away, nobody including your own lawyer will tell you that. That is how they make the deal and if you get in trouble again that they will testify of everything even 20 year old traffic tickets. I was arrested, everything dropped but twice I have been detained and searched because I was arrested. Last stopped in front of my house for nothing but show the neighbors they are control freaks.


  117. And yesterday they put on a military equipment show! Must be afraid of them and they make sure of that.


  118. Yes Phil that will break both into scratch resistant pieces.


  119. A guy on NPR today opined that the exit of Scotland would make Parliament more conservative than ever, and increase chances of the UK exiting the EU, thereby affecting world markets.


  120. Scotland – odds heavily in favor of a NO vote.   Place your bet:

    http://www.oddschecker.com/politics/british-politics/scottish-independence/referendum-outcome


  121. Shadow- I use my AMEX to pay the electric co., the phone co., the cable co., etc. and everyone else I can on a recurring basis. The rewards have allowed me to take my wife to Italy and my two oldest kids with us to Spain over the last few years. We not only got our tickets but upgrades to business class for me and the little woman both trips. No one has a rewards program as good as the one they have. Not to mention getting Ipods, Ipads , coffee makers. I used to use it to pay my businesses bills too and have over the years done well cashing in the rewards or trading them for airline miles. By the way, if anyone ever needs to go to Spain, I highly recommend Iberia who has a very liberal frequent flyer program that requires less points than just about anyone for all of that stuff. Not to mention hot Spanish flight attendants. According to my wife it went both ways too!


  122. Alibaba pricing at $68/share according to CNBC. Yahoo up about .34 so far after hours.


  123. Dremel goes 3-D.. Home Depot and Amazon taking pre-orders today.
    At $999 though strikes me as a bit pricey

    http://www.gizmag.com/dremel-3d-idea-builder-printer/33850/


  124. craig

    I have been offered a card and yes rewards are great but I also had a business and they charged me as a merchant about 7% while MC and Visa were about 2.5%. Big stores with high profits take them while many small businesses like mine dropped me. I do remember 1 guy who asked if I took it and said these guys ripped me off so far no one will take it. I explained with a little more charges I would drop to 2%, Discover wanted 4% and it was worse than sales tax 5%.

    Use it but you are screwing the merchants and that is why they have very few card holders, I got an offer this week, circular filed!

    How about answering my email?


  125. sorry dropped them!


  126. Scots , Catalonians/ Phil:

     

    They want the advantages of being part of EU without the necessary counterbalances , specially military….most youths think here that normal things for them are scarce in the world ( security, functional services, rational cities, top level sanitation, etc

    The EU was build to allow Europe to surpass the horizon created by XIX century of nations build in a Middle age way of thinking ( My valley, My region, My river etc) instead of that the idea having many OUR.  So the EU purpose is to integrate countries not to disintegrate  them. 


  127. craig

    To explain, you gave generously to the shadow fund, left email contact, had your own problems to deal with and feel free to say No I won't get you released, my sister won't come up from TN. I know exactly what happened and those who turned this negative. All I can do is make things worse but disagreements don't bother me but it is imposable to not notice the change of attitude. I hope you never reach my state of not caring about almost everything because like last night couldn't sleep because of pain. 



  128. scott It is absolutely true, in many ways the cops in the US need their powers stopped before the become the law. For the 99% they already are.


  129. European Central Bank hands out first batch of cheap loans to banks in stimulus effort
    http://www.foxnews.com/world/2014/09/18/european-central-bank-hands-out-first-batch-cheap-loans-to-banks-in-stimulus/


  130. Retailers may hire most holiday workers since 1999, report says
    http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-retailers-holiday-hiring-20140918-story.html


  131. Most hired in 35 years? Phil we both need to stop posting such bull shit.




  132. Is Paid Search Ineffective for Online Marketing?
    http://www.entrepreneur.com/article/237384


  133. Microsoft cuts 2,100 jobs in its latest round of layoffs
    http://www.engadget.com/2014/09/18/microsoft-layoffs-round-2/?ncid=rss_truncated


  134. Even the smartest investors don’t really understand Alibaba
    http://fortune.com/2014/09/18/even-the-smartest-investors-dont-really-understand-alibaba/



  135. Shadow, I answered your emails, and I apologize one more time for missing them. Let's keep that conversation over there. Happy to help out, so no worries. 


  136.  AAPL/Phil- I seem to recall a while back you made a statement that if Apple stayed over 100 for or until ? it would then run to 120 is what I think you said. Can you repeat whatever that statement was? Thanks.


  137. Excellent craig!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


  138. TOS Big Brother
    Just an FYI
    The /CL Oct are CLOSE only. I didn't know this, and closed my two to lower and my basis, now I'm locked out.
    Reason being, it's technically Fridays session and TDA liquidates 3 days prior to expiration.


  139. TOS big brother Wombat!

    I have been clear on my view and I hate cops for reason, details anyone? Not here email nsenape@Hotmail.com and I promise truth that will shock you and some things I won't even email, so you get the soft version call Arlyn and get her view she got the real shit deal!


  140. City of angles lives up to it's name money flows in for a dog while they arrest people. Want the full story about the cops? call 307/353-2501 and delete ID block or I won't answer


  141. Warming World? Tornado in Idaho mountains, What does that mean? Go big oil!


  142. "hallllooooooo"

    -Tigger
     


  143. With claws and fangs!


  144. Income Portfolio Update:  Up 6.6% is on track for our 10% goal but this conservative portfolio is more about setting up years of income to come.  Our primary purpose in year one is to establish a base of long-term holdings that we will be able to milk for a steady(ish) income down the road.  This year, we have done very little call selling and have used (so far) just $117,000 out of $1M in available margin as we've been VERY conservative in our entries.

    EXCEPT for AAPL – that position is being played very aggressively and we'll have to manage it carefully – but more about that when we get to it.

    • DIS – When you are this far in the money on a spread, you have to decide if it's worth the margin to get the last 35% over 16 more months.  Since the margin is so low, however, there's no reason not to wait out the last $900.  HOWEVER – since rolling to 2017 won't cost us more margin and WILL give us more money, we need to see if that's worth it.  The 2017 $65 puts are $3.80 but DIS is at $90 and we REALLY would like to own 500 shares of DIS so why not roll up to the 2017 $70 puts at $5 and collect net $3.20?   $5/854 days = 0.006/day while $1.80/483 days =  0.0037/day so we make almost twice as much each day off essentially the same position with the same margin!  
    • FCX – On track.
    • GOGO – New
    • HOV – Happy to own them if it comes to that, good for a new entry.  
    • SBUX – On track
    • ARO - Good for a new entry.
    • ABB -On track
    • CLF – On track, good for a new entry
    • GTAT – Off track, good for a new entry
    • NLY – On track, good for a new entry
    • OPTT – I was happy with their Earnings Report last week, want to stick with them.  Much better entry now than when we started.  Our net entry is 0.79/1.65 and OPT is at $1.30, so not too bad.  As a new entry, it's net -0.30/1.10.
    • XCO – On track, good for a new entry.  
    • AAPL – We have the $85.71/107.14 bull call spread ($21.43) currently priced at $10.55, so there is 70 x $10,88 left to make at $107.14 = $76,160.  We sold 20 of the $87.14 puts and they still have a balance of $13,000.  So, that's $89,160 coming to us if AAPL goes higher.  We sold 35 of the Oct $84.29 calls for $9.25 and they are now $17.65, so we are down 35 x $8.40 = $29,400, but only if AAPL stays up this high and that would mean we're up $89,160 on the other side.  So there is nothing at all wrong with this arrangement EXCEPT for the premiums that are still on the short positions.  
    • All that matters is our PLAN for the position.   For now, I like the protection of the short $84.29 calls.  On a roll, we can split them ($17.65 at the moment) to the Jan $95 calls ($9.30) and the short Jan $100 puts ($4.75).  That way, we would spend $3.70 on the roll but we would have moved the short calls up $10 and, since we're selling $14.05 worth of premium on a spread that is $5 apart, we know $9 of that premium will burn off by Jan.  If AAPL is lower, we'll roll the short puts out to lower strikes and, if AAPL is higher, it would have to be over $104 for us to lose another penny and we'd be well on our way to $89,000.  This position, by itself, would make our goal for 2016.
    • It's very hard to just ride these positions out, in this case, it is playing hell with this portfolio's balance but that's why we do these reviews – as the overall position is fairly margin-neutral, we can even afford to Double Down on the longs and roll the short calls to a 2x position – the only thing we don't want to do is overcommit on the short put side so I don't want to pull that trigger unless we have to and, so far, we don't have to – but we do have a plan!  
    • ABX – Off track, still a good entry.  Not off track enough to press.  
    • CCJ – On track. 
    • CLF – Earnings are 10/22(ish) – I'd like to hear what they say before adding/adjusting. 
    • CZR – Off track. We just doubled down on the calls and the short calls are too expensive to buy back so watch and wait on these.  
    • EBAY – On track
    • HPQ – On track
    • IRBT – These are a mistake, should have been in LTP, not here (though I do like the trade).  Will come up with new entry from scratch.  
    • LULU – On track
    • PFE – On track
    • PNRA – On track
    • RIG – Off track, good for a new entry. 
    • TASR – On track
    • TEX – Off track, good for a new entry.  
    • TM – On track
    • TWTR – On track
    • UBNT – On track
    • WFM – On track, good for a new entry. 

    If you want to know why this portfolio is "only" up 6.6%, look at TASR.  TASR is at $16.91 and we have 20 2016 $10/15 bull call spreads at $1.60 and they are STILL showing $1.60.  The 20 short 2016 $15 puts we sold for $3.80 show $2.80.  Essentially, though this position 140% in the money, we're showing almost none of the profits.  If TASR holds $15 for 16 months, this position alone cashes out at $10,000 – currently it's valued at -$2,400, so 500% to gain from here and we originally got a $4,400 credit for setting it up!  

    That's why this portfolio is on track, without touching our $500,000 (or using much of the buying power) we have sold $34,000 worth of premium in 8 months, collecting $4,000 a month to live on.  As the positions mature, we make our real gains but the $4,400 from TASR is already safely in our pockets and now we have a -$2,400 position that can still turn into a $10,000 position, making us another 3 months worth of income!  

    Now that these portfolios are maturing, we can focus more on the mechanics of the trades.  It's important you understand them because you may not be satisfied with the short-term results but, 12 months from now, you will look back at this still-buyable set and wonder how you didn't get involved when it was only up 6.6%!  


  145. Griffin, Advill:  Scotland / EU — Democracy has much going for it, conceptually, "the worst system of government except for all the others", as has been often said.  Perhaps a benevolent dictatorship is, in theory, the best form of government, but "absolute power corrupts absolutely", hence it has not proven a sustainable system over the longer term.  But one of democracy's biggest weaknesses is the "better now, worse later" choices that emanate from popular [by the people] governments.  Ergo Bernanke and money printing, for example.

     

    The UK is a small place, made up of even smaller places.  They joined the EU to better their lot, and may well exit the EU by the same reasoning process, now that the world has become a more populated and less wealthy venue.  Italy, Spain, Portugal, Poland, and a number of other EU countries may exit for the same [non]-reason — because voters want better lives, and there aren't that many Large Buttons to Push that their domestic politicians, in order to differentiate themselves from the competition, can argue will deliver that improvement.  Joining the EU was one, leaving it is another.  Hence some number of  EU polities will likely demand it, absent a significant change in their economic fortunes -- perhaps the UK [or what's left of it post-Scotland], Italy, Spain, Portugal, Poland, Greece, Austria, Belgium and other smaller countries – there are 27 EU countries in all.

     

    Since the crux of the EU problem is the inability of a common currency to reflect real differences in productivity, rather than all the other regulatory and administrative matters that are clearly beneficial, it's not impossible that the currency issue could be isolated and addressed in isolation, although interest rates could then become the focal point.  

     

    There is no easy fix for an aging world population which doubled very quickly with little time for compensating structural adjustments, and hobbled by the better now/worse later problem rooted in  "we-are-mortal-and-our-lives-are-short" consciousness.  Why else would it be reported that "“Some 45 percent of the 70 million people in the top income bracket in China express intentions to emigrate…”   http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-08-05/chinese-demand-rush-for-australia-homes-here-to-stay-ausin-says.html


  146. zeroxzero

    You need to extrapolate! You have the right ideas but need to fill in the blanks.


  147. Dear Shadow:  I try not to.  I have lived too long to try my hand at prediction.  I prefer to create a schema based on observations and modify it as the facts change.  Clearly, keeping the lion's share of your investments — and your family --  in the hemisphere with 980 M out of the 7.27 Billion world population, surrounded by large oceans and in a  country which spends as much on defense as all other countries combined is a rational move.  Being in the center of that country, high in the mountains far from either shore, also seems reasonable.  All of which I've arranged.  Of course, no one gets out of here alive. But I do what I can in the meantime.


  148. iPhone 6 launch / line at the Upper West Side store started last night.  Now snakes several blocks.  it will be like this for the next week as they sell out everyday.  mostly foreigners that will sell for 2-3x the price overseas


  149. zeroxzero

    But we need to say more or maybe the world as we want it to be is over. I also hold back my opinions but somewhere fall into what can they do to me and do I give a shit? 


  150. Just when you think this market is ready to rollover, we get 3 strong days – S&P over 2000 for 2 days in a row again and NYSE over 11,000! Tomorrow is quad witching day so could be volatile – as opposed to the last week!


  151. Putin / Zero – So reminescent of the cold war! Maybe Putin could threaten Eastern Europe militarily but his economy would take such a hit very quickly that it has to be taken as bluster for now! How did that work for the USSR? There is just not much teeth to his threats. Probably just playing to his domestic crowd.

    On the other hand, on the domestic front, back to his old habits of letting his friends takeover the competition while the owners get thrown to jail. Democracy 101 there…


  152. I am fascinated by an anecdote related recently by James O'Shaughnessy of O'Shaughnessy Asset Management. An employee who recently joined his firm told him that Fidelity had studied which customer investing accounts performed the best: They were the ones held by people who had forgotten they even had Fidelity accounts, and so did no buying or selling from them.

    When O'Shaughnessy told that tale on Bloomberg Radio to Barry Ritholtz of Ritholtz Wealth Management, Ritholtz responded that he'd noticed something similar with families fighting over inherited assets. Because of extended court battles, in some cases, the accounts couldn't be touched for 10 or 20 years: No buying new investments or selling old ones. Those families subsequently found that the period of inactivity was the time when their investments performed best.

    Think about the ramifications of these stories. These investors took no advice from a "market-beating" broker or adviser. Considered no financial news. Made no effort to time the market. Made no additions to or subtractions from their portfolios. They engaged in no analysis of any kind. And yet, it worked. Could this be the key to investing success?

    http://www.businessinsider.com/forgetful-investors-performed-best-2014-9

     

     



  153. Good morning! 

    Scottish independence is a NO – as expected, markets could care less. 

    Futures are way up, Dollar 84.45 but Yen 109.11 and /NKD hit 16,330 but back to 16,245 already.  My average short is 16,200 so I'm sticking in for now.  

    17,250 on /YM, 2,012 on /ES may give us our first day over 2,000, 4,115 on /NQ and 1,160 on /TF is, of course, a shorting line I could not resist. /CLX4 (the new one) is at $91.96 and I stopped out of the old one even and am no long on /CLX4 over $92 (so not in now at all). 

    Gold is $1,224, silver $18.52 (I still like the $18.50 line long on /SI), copper $3.10, Nat gas $3.89 and gasoline $2.57.

    Yesterday's Late-Day Buying Panic In Stocks Was The Biggest In 3 Years

    Stocks Are More Crash-Prone Than Ever," Fleckenstein Slams "Fed's Idiot Policies"

    The Next Crisis – Part 1

    Investors Withdraw $1.2 Billion from Junk-Bond FundsInvestors pulled $1.2 billion from U.S. funds that buy high-yield bonds, the largest weekly outflow since a record $7.1 billion during the first week of August, according to data provider Lipper.

    U.S. Treasury Market Goes Off ScriptGap Between Short- and Long-Term Yields Narrows.

    Commodities Drop to 5-Year Low as Fed Boosts Rate OutlookThe Bloomberg Commodity Index of 22 futures dropped as much as 1.3 percent to 120.4562, the lowest level since July 2009, and was last at 120.4843. The gauge has lost 4.2 percent in 2014 and is set for a fourth year of declines. Diesel decreased to a two-year low, while gold slipped to the lowest level since January. Wheat fell to the least since 2010 on the outlook for growing global output.

    Officially, the Nikkei closed up 1.5% at 16,300 with a bit of a pump to close there.  Hang Seng bounced 0.5%, Shanghai up 0.34%, India up 0.25%.  Bad new is good news in Japan, of course:

    • Japan Lowers Economic View

      Japan cut its overall assessment of the economy in September for the first time in five months, raising questions over the viability of pushing ahead with a second sales-tax increase after the first one in April hurt demand and stalled growth.

    Europe is up about 1%, led by Germany up 1.4% and trailed by London, up 0.6% – they all seem happy about the No vote or maybe just following us.  

    Pound Jumps With U.K. Futures on Scotland as Crops Drop. The pound jumped to a two-week high, U.K. share-index futures rose and Treasuries fell as early results showed Scotland voting to reject independence. Asian equities (MXAP) climbed with contracts on the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index on signs of U.S. economic strength, and the yen fell. The pound gained 0.6 percent to $1.6495 by 10:58 a.m. in Tokyo, the highest since Sept. 3, and FTSE 100 Index futures added 0.7 percent. The yield on 10-year Treasuries climbed three basis points while S&P 500 futures added 0.2 percent following another record in New York. The MSCI Asia Pacific Index rose 0.2 percent.

    Putin's Bullying Gets Scarier and Subtler


  154. Wow, my brother sent me this from Miami – I didn't realize how fast we'd be back in business with Cuba:


  155. We could have seen this one coming a mile away: 

    A federal judge in Utah has ruled that a member of a fundamentalist offshoot of the Mormon faith may refuse to answer questions in a child labor investigation as a result of the Hobby Lobby ruling on birth control.
     
    The Sept. 11 decision by U.S. District Court Judge David Sam says Vergel Steed, who belongs to the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (FLDS), doesn't have to comply with a federal subpoena because naming church leaders would violate his religious freedom.
     
     
     


  156. Phil, There was a good response released from Peabody (BTU) yesterday indicating that the Chinese coal restrictions were widely misinterpreted and global coal demand is on the rise due to low inventories coming into the dark season.  I do not think any of us would be surprised to learn GS chased its clients out of positions at the bottom of a cycle.  Where were the analysts when the stock was up at $19? 

    …"Based on current information, Peabody expects China's recent policy to have no negative impact on the company's coal export volumes."…

    Source: Company News from TOS  (MT News)


  157. Good catch Sibe, thanks. 


  158. ZxZ / EU

    In USA you can find a California ( Germany) or FL (Italy) or TX ( Poland) and also a Wi ( Portugal) or MI       ( Greece) or AL ( Sweden), and nobody think in the U.S that different productivities ( AR versus TX)  or MI versus CA) creates a problem for the dollar  or creates a problem of integration.

    As I can see this the main problem is to find the way to make sustainable the social schemes now in place, if we are able to do that basically reducing the small fraud make by millions against the system reducing fraud in unemployment, minimum rent,…then we have a chance, that´s why in my opinion Germans were pro reduction of deficit ( means really reduction of fraud) before  expansionay measures, they try not to kick the can to next generation..

    Politicians here as in U.S are to happy trigger with money don´t belong to them, but my sensation is that we are moving in the right direction , not sure if fast enough.

    After all Europe has been the social ideas lab of humanity…. Capitalism, Communism, Socialdemocracy, Fascism, you name it…thinks happens here before the rest of the world, the risks are usually in our side.

     

    Well enough….have all a good day!..is Friday