Archive for November, 2015

EXCLUSIVE: Macquarie Says It's Natural To See This Little Bounce In WWE

Courtesy of Benzinga.

EXCLUSIVE: Macquarie Says It's Natural To See This Little Bounce In WWE
Related WWE
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Shares of World Wrestling Entertainment, Inc. (NYSE: WWE) on Tuesday opened more than 4 percent higher. The stock hit a high of $17.87 and briefly fell under the $17 level. Shares traded recently at $17.37, up 2.2 percent.

But why?

Benzinga spoke with Macquarie analyst James Clement. WWE traded at the $21 level in October and Clement said Tuesday morning that "it's natural to see a little bounce here." He also noted the stock has been trading rangebound between its 50-day and 200-day moving average.

Back on November 20, the firm reiterated a Neutral rating and $18 price target on the stock.

The company's annual "Wrestlemania season" will be heating up shortly, so the stock may be one to keep an eye on. Back in 2014, shares hit their all-time high of $31.91 around that time. Wrestlemania season typically begins sometime in January and runs through April.

Related Link: Trailblazers: Vince McMahon Takes His Empire, And An Industry, Over The Top

The company has also been struggling with record-low ratings, particular for its flagship "Monday night Raw" program. The show recently hit its lowest viewership levels in 18 years.

WWE shares hit a 2015-high of $23.63 in early August and have been up and down since. Despite a strong Q3 earnings beat on October 29, the stock has tumbled. Shares saw a slight spike in late-October and mid-November when the sports-entertainment company announced its WWE Network would be offered in India and Germany, respectively.

FBN Securities initiated coverage on the stock in October and said the WWE Network was "clearly a viable business."

"In short, we feel WWE is worth a look – especially by deep value investors given the quarterly dividend, the strength of management, the uniqueness and high barriers to entry tied to the company’s business lines and the strength of the balance sheet," FBN said at the time. "Due to the…
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RBC: Rackspace Will Win From Microsoft, Amazon Cloud Connection

Courtesy of Benzinga.

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  • Rackspace Hosting, Inc. (NYSE: RAX) shares have plunged 39 percent year-to-date, having declined from a high of above $55 on April 28 to below $26 on November 24.
  • RBC Capital Markets’ Jonathan Atkin upgraded the rating on the company from Sector Perform to Outperform, while maintaining a price target of $36.
  • While there is continued momentum for enterprise cloud, the company is well positioned to benefit from its managed cloud support services as well as its own platform, Atkin said.

Analyst Jonathan Atkin said that the enterprise cloud momentum seems to be accelerating for Microsoft Corporation’s (NASDAQ: MSFT) Azure and, Inc.’s (NASDAQ: AMZN) AWS [Amazon Web Services].

“In our view, part of the accelerated demand will be in the managed cloud segment, where RAX stands to gain by virtue of its growing ability to provide support on each of these cloud platforms, as well as its own OpenStack-based platform,” Atkin wrote.

He added that Rackspace’s revenue growth could accelerate during 2016, ahead of the recently generated rate of 2.5 percent average sequential growth. “Coupled with stable to potentially declining capital intensity, we believe top-line acceleration provides a potential catalyst for reaching our reach our $36 price target,” the analyst commented.

The RBC Capital Markets report enumerated reasons for which Rackspace could outperform peers:

  1. Unlike other cloud providers, Rackspace is building a multi-platform capability for delivering managed cloud services
  2. Enterprise cloud adoption is still in the early stages, which bodes well for various service providers and cloud platform operators
  3. Although Rackspace's support-intensive cost structure and lack of infrastructure ownership in its third-party managed cloud segment could exert pressure on the potential for margin expansion,

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Benzinga's Volume Movers

Courtesy of Benzinga.

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Mattress Firm Holding Corp (NASDAQ: MFRM) shares climbed 10.82 percent to $54.70. The volume of Mattress Firm Holding shares traded was 1410 percent higher than normal. Mattress Firm agreed to acquire HMK Mattress Holdings LLC, the holding company of Sleepy’s and related entities, for $780 million. The company reported preliminary Q3 adjusted earnings of $0.80 to $0.82 per share, and sales growth of 50.7 percent.

Infoblox Inc (NYSE: BLOX) shares rose 19.81 percent to $18.02. The volume of Infoblox shares traded was 869 percent higher than normal. Infoblox reported better-than-expected results for its fiscal first quarter and issued a strong outlook.

AEterna Zentaris Inc. (USA) (NASDAQ: AEZS) surged 9.07 percent to $10.58. The volume of AEterna Zentaris shares traded was 357 percent higher than normal. Aeterna Zentaris and Armune BioScience reported the finalization of a co-marketing agreement for APIFINY® prostate cancer blood test.

ITC Holdings Corp. (NYSE: ITC) shares moved up 3.23 percent to $38.10. The volume of ITC traded was 343 percent higher than normal. On Monday, ITC Holdings reported that it is evaluating strategic alternatives, including a potential sale of itself.

Posted-In: volume moversNews Intraday Update Markets Movers

Credit Suisse Defends Lululemon, Sees $64 Per Share Price

Courtesy of Benzinga.

Credit Suisse Defends Lululemon, Sees $64 Per Share Price

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Lululemon falls on downgrade (Investor’s Business Daily)

  • The share price of Lululemon Athletica inc. (NASDAQ: LULU) has declined 23.55 percent over the past three months, with the shares trading close to their 52-week low on November 17.
  • Christian Buss of Credit Suisse has reiterated an Outperform rating and price target of $64 on the company.
  • Buss mentioned that an analysis of more than 7,000 SKUs on Lululemon’s website indicated robust sales momentum at the beginning of Q4.

Analyst Christian Buss explained that the SKU analysis suggested “reduced discounting activity, higher SKU count for women's and men's apparel, and sequentially stable in-stock rates.”

The markdown intensity rate for November decreased, both sequentially and year-on-year, “suggesting that LULU may have begun to rationalize their 2Q inventory build,” Buss said.

Related Link: FBR Downgrades Lululemon, Sees 20% Downside

Given the increased SKU count and lack of increase in markdown activity, there appears to be higher potential for gross margin expansion.

In addition, according to the Credit Suisse report, “Given the increased promotional activity across retail heading into the holiday period, LULU's ability to maintain price integrity is an encouraging sign and suggests successful sell through of new product.”

Apart from a lower percentage of apparel being on sale in November, as compared to a year ago and to September, in-stock rates have increased on a year-on-year basis. However, given that the in-stock rates are within the two-year average range, Lululemon is likely to have been able to control these rates across product categories, despite higher inventory.

Women’s in-stock rate reached a two-year high, which Buss believes could be due to “the greater assortment of product offered online in both higher-risk color product and core black product.”

Latest Ratings for LULU

Date Firm Action From To
Nov 2015 FBR Capital Downgrades Market Perform Underperform
Oct 2015 Wells Fargo Assumes Market Perform
Oct 2015 Credit Suisse Upgrades Neutral Outperform

View More Analyst Ratings for LULU
View the Latest Analyst Ratings

Posted-In: Christian Buss Credit SuisseAnalyst Color Long Ideas Reiteration Analyst Ratings Trading Ideas Best of Benzinga

Aduro Biotech Downgraded By Oppenheimer On Listeriosis Disclosure

Courtesy of Benzinga.

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  • Aduro BioTech Inc (NASDAQ: ADRO) shares have climbed 51 percent in the last three months, even after hitting a low of $19.03 on September 29.
  • Oppenheimer’s Wendy Lam downgraded the rating on the company to Perform.
  • Although clinical studies continue for CRS-207, the event of one case of listeriosis highlights its potential risk, Lam stated.

Aduro Biotech disclosed one case of listeriosis in a delayed 10-Q filing. The patient had developed symptoms of listeriosis two months ago, and was successfully treated with antibiotics. The patient continues to receive CRS-207

“Whether the case was indeed listeriosis remains an open question. On one hand, only the blood sample from the central line port was positive for CRS-207; sputum, stool, urine, and peripheral vein blood samples were negative. On the other hand, although the exact cause remains debatable, the patient's listeriosislike symptoms resolved with intravenous antibiotic treatment,” analyst Wendy Lam wrote.

The company hosted a conference call to provide additional details. Lam noted the key takeaways from the call:

  1. The investigator could neither confirm Listeriosis nor ruled it out
  2. The event was triggered by a study protocol violation
  3. Aduro had reported the SAE to the FDA a couple of months before and all clinical studies continue

“While the case has been resolved and an FDA hold is unlikely at this point, we believe this event highlights the inherent risk to using attenuated Listeria; we would not be surprised if similar cases arise in the future,” Lam commented.

The downgrade is based on valuation, the analyst said, since the shares now reflect the perceived risk/reward for CRS-207.

Latest Ratings for ADRO

Date Firm Action From To
Dec 2015 Oppenheimer Downgrades Outperform Perform
Oct 2015 Oppenheimer Initiates Coverage on Outperform
Oct 2015 Oppenheimer Initiates Coverage on Outperform

View More Analyst Ratings for ADRO
View the Latest Analyst Ratings

Posted-In: Oppenheimer Wendy LamAnalyst Color Downgrades Analyst Ratings

Barclays On Merck: Too Much Underlying Value To Ignore

Courtesy of Benzinga.

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WisdomTree LargeCap Dividend ETF (DLN) November Summary (Seeking Alpha)

  • Merck & Co., Inc. (NYSE: MRK) shares are down 13 percent in the last six months, having plunged in August and September and declining steadily in November.
  • Barclays’ Geoff Meacham assumed coverage of the company with an Overweight rating and a price target of $66.
  • Following the underperformance of Merck’s shares, the stock seems to be discounting all the risks and headwinds, Meacham stated.

Merck’s shares have underperformed the DRG and S&P 500 over the past year. The pressure on shares has been on concerns surrounding Remicade in the EU, the Keytruda immuno-oncology strategy, and the potential impact to the Januvia franchise from SGLT-2s.

Analyst Geoff Meacham said that although there have been several headwinds and risks “that make Merck a "show me" story,” there appears to be “too much underlying value to ignore,” even under the most potential negative scenarios.

While Remicade could erode further and there may be a slowdown in Januvia, these are already reflected in Merck’s shares, Meacham mentioned. He added that Remicade could decline 15 percent ex-FX in 2016, in a conservative model. The decline would be due to “fewer new patient starts, competition from biosimilars, and new oral therapies.”

In the report Barclays noted, “Rapid anticipated SGLT-2 class growth is likely to impact Januvia modestly going forward, but combination use should moderate potential declines, though we also see movement toward fixed dose SGLT-2/DPP-4 combinations as the preferred choice over separate multiple pills.” Merck and Pfizer Inc. (NYSE: PFE) are also co-developing ertugliflozin, which is currently in Phase 3.

“Even if pipeline assets aren't blockbusters, they add up and are nearly free at the current valuation,” Meacham wrote.

Latest Ratings for MRK

Date Firm Action From To
Dec 2015 Barclays Upgrades Equal-weight Overweight
Nov 2015 Berenberg Initiates Coverage on Buy
Sep 2015 JP Morgan Maintains Overweight

View More Analyst Ratings for MRK
View the Latest Analyst Ratings

Posted-In: Barclays Geoff MeachamAnalyst Color Long Ideas Initiation Analyst Ratings Trading Ideas

Stifel Downgrades Rexx As Its Financial Risk Doesn't Warrant A Hold

Courtesy of Benzinga.

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  • Rex Energy Corporation (NASDAQ: REXX) shares have lost 73 percent year-to-date, and are currently trading close to the lower end of their 52-week range of $1.36 – $8.21.
  • Stifel’s Michael S. Scialla downgraded the rating on the company from Hold to Sell, while establishing a price target of $0.75.
  • The company does not seem to have sufficient funds to cover interest expenses in 2016, Scialla noted.

The downgrade in rating follows a reduction in the oil and natural gas price forecasts for 4Q15 and 2016, analyst Michael Scialla said. He commented that although Rex Energy’s shares have plummeted over the past 12 months, “the financial risk does not warrant a Hold rating in our view.”

Scialla explained that the company’s liquidity was at $284mn, with $3mn in cash and $281mn available on a $350mn credit facility, at the end of the quarter. The sale of Keystone Clearwater Solutions in 3Q added $71.1mn to this estimate.

Although Rex Energy exited the quarter with enough liquidity to fund a projected $74mn outspend in 2016, the company “will have very little cushion to cover interest expenses next year, by our estimates,” the analyst commented.

“The stock is currently valued at a 23% premium to our small-cap peer group based on EV/2016 EBITDA,” Scialla added.

Latest Ratings for REXX

Date Firm Action From To
Dec 2015 Stifel Nicolaus Downgrades Hold Sell
Nov 2015 Imperial Capital Downgrades Outperform In-line
Nov 2015 Northland Securities Downgrades Outperform Market Perform

View More Analyst Ratings for REXX
View the Latest Analyst Ratings

Posted-In: Michael S. Scialla StifelAnalyst Color Short Ideas Downgrades Analyst Ratings Trading Ideas

2015: The Last Christmas In America

Courtesy of Charles Hugh-Smith, Of Two Minds

If we define Christmas as consumer spending going up while earnings are going down, 2015 will be the last Christmas in America for a long time to come. In broad brush, Christmas (along with all other consumer spending) has been funded by financialization, i.e. debt and leverage, not by increased earnings.

The primary financial trick that's propped up the "recovery" for seven years is piling more debt on stagnating incomes. How does this magic work? Lower interest rates.

In a healthy economy, households earn more money (after adjusting for inflation, a.k.a. loss of purchasing power), and the increased earnings enable households to save, spend and borrow more.

In an unhealthy, doomed-to-implode economy, earnings are declining, and central banks enable more borrowing by lowering interest rates to zero and loosening lending standards so anyone who can fog a mirror can buy a new pickup truck with a subprime auto loan.

The problem with financialization is that it eventually runs out of oxygen. As earnings decline, eventually there's no more income to support more debt. And once debt stops expanding, the economy doesn't just stagnate, it implodes, because the entire ramshackle con game of financialization requires a steady increase in debt and leverage to keep from crashing.

The trickery of substituting financialization for earned income--the trickery that fueled the last seven years of "recovery"--is exhausted.

The incomes of even the most educated workers are going nowhere, while the earnings of the bottom 90% are sliding:

Wages as a percentage of gross domestic product (GDP) have been declining for decades. Note the diminishing returns on financialization and asset bubbles that always bust: wages blip up in the bubble and then crash to new lows when the bubble bursts:

Look at how debt has soared while GDP has essentially flatlined. This is diminishing returns writ large: we have to pile on ever-increasing mountains of debt just to keep GDP from going negative.

This dependence on debt for "growth" leaves the economy exquisitely sensitive to any decline in debt growth. The slightest drop in debt growth in the Global Financial Meltdown…
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What’s With All The Superweapons?


Courtesy of John Rubino

Because apparently the world isn’t complex and scary enough, the major powers have decided to unveil a bunch of “superweapons” capable of, um, unique kinds of mayhem:

Russia reveals giant nuclear torpedo in state TV ‘leak’

The Kremlin says secret plans for a Russian long-range nuclear torpedo – called “Status-6” – should not have appeared on Russian TV news. The leak happened during a report on state-run Channel One about President Vladimir Putin meeting military chiefs in the city of Sochi. One general was seen studying a diagram of the “devastating” torpedo system.

Launched by a submarine, it would create “wide areas of radioactive contamination”, the document says. The “oceanic multi-purpose Status-6 system” is designed to “destroy important economic installations of the enemy in coastal areas and cause guaranteed devastating damage to the country’s territory by creating wide areas of radioactive contamination, rendering them unusable for military, economic or other activity for a long time”, the document says.

According to state-run Rossiiskaya Gazeta, the destructive power attributed to the new torpedo’s warhead would fit the description of a cobalt bomb. That would be a type of thermonuclear warhead with a layer of cobalt-59, which on detonation would be transmuted into highly radioactive cobalt-60 with a half-life longer than five years.

A warhead of up to 100 megatons could produce a tsunami up to 500m (1,650ft) high, wiping out all living things 1,500km (930 miles) deep inside US territory – Konstantin Sivkov, Russian Geopolitical Academy. Such a weapon would guarantee “that everything living will be killed”, the paper said – there would not even be any survivors in bunkers.

“It’s true some secret data got into the shot, therefore it was subsequently deleted,” said Mr Putin’s spokesman Dmitry Peskov. “In future we will undoubtedly take preventive measures so this does not happen again.”


DARPA’s Unmanned Submarine Stalker Could Change Naval Warfare Forever

There is no doubt about it: the US Navy has a big problem with small and relatively cheap submarines. China in particular has a rapidly expanding sub fleet, while Russia continues to slowly revamp theirs. Meanwhile, Air Independent Propulsion (AIP)

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News You Can Use From Phil’s Stock World


Financial Markets and Economy

IMF Approves Reserve-Currency Status for China's Yuan (Bloomberg)

The IMF will add the yuan to its basket of reserve currencies, an international stamp of approval of the progress China has made integrating into a global economic system dominated for decades by the U.S., Europe and Japan.

The most creative thing central banks have done since the financial crisis has had 'unspectacular' results (Bloomberg)

The most creative thing done by central banks since the financial crisis is taking benchmark interest rates into negative territory. But, according Willem Buiter and his team at Citi, the results have ultimately been fairly "unspectacular."

Screen Shot 2015 11 30 at 5.01.46 PM

U.S. scales back ethanol quotas for gasoline (Market Watch)

The Environmental Protection Agency Monday issued final regulations that ease the annual requirements for ethanol in gasoline, a response to market restraints and other conditions that are preventing the Obama administration from meeting goals laid out in a 2007 law.

Here's more evidence of Wall Street's obsession with technology (Business Insider)

Wall Street banks are well-aware of the potential change technology could bring to its field — and new data shows they don't want to miss out on a chance to team up with financial tech startups early on.

CB Insights fintech

Hedge Funds Raise Bets on Dollar Gains for Fifth Straight Week (Bloomberg)

Hedge funds boosted wagers on dollar strength for a fifth week as traders prepare for a month in which the Federal Reserve may raise interest rates for the first time in almost a decade.

Trafigura to close metals fund in latest sign of stress from low commodity prices (Market Watch)

Commodities trader Trafigura Beheer B.V. said it is closing a metals fund in another sign of how global trading houses continue to struggle against low resource prices.

Galena Metals Fund, which is operated by Trafigura subsidiary Galena Asset Management, is to be wound down “in view of the difficult conditions prevailing on commodities markets,” the company

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Zero Hedge

Why Is Maduro Still Pushing The Petro?

Courtesy of ZeroHedge View original post here.

Authored by William Luther via The American Institute for Economic Research,

In a recent Wall Street Journal article, Mary Anastasia O’Grady writes that Venezuela’s “National Superintendency for the Defense of Socio-Economic Rights is reportedly pressuring stores to accept the government’s new digital fiat currency, the petro.” The Venezuelan government claims its digital...

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The Technical Traders

Is The Technology Sector Setting Up For A Crash? Part IV

Courtesy of Technical Traders

As we continue to get more and more information related to the Coronavirus spreading across Asia and Europe, the one thing we really must consider is the longer-term possibility that major global economies may contract in some manner as the Chinese economy is currently doing.  The news suggests over 700+ million people in China are quarantined.  This is a staggering number of people – nearly double the total population of the entire United States.

If the numbers presented by the Chinese are accurate, the Coronavirus has a very high infection rate, yet a moderately small mortality rate (2~3%).  Still, if this virus continues to spread throughout the world and infects m...

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Phil's Favorites

Why Trump's post-impeachment actions are about vengeance, not retribution


Why Trump's post-impeachment actions are about vengeance, not retribution

President Trump fired Army Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman for testifying in his impeachment trial. AP Photo/Susan Walsh, File

Courtesy of Austin Sarat, Amherst College

Since the end of his Senate impeachment trial, President Donald Trump has carried out a concerted campaign against ...

more from Ilene

Biotech & Health

Deep learning AI discovers surprising new antibiotics


Deep learning AI discovers surprising new antibiotics

A colored electron microscope image of MRSA. NIH - NIAID/flickr, CC BY

Courtesy of Sriram Chandrasekaran, University of Michigan

Imagine you’re a fossil hunter. You spend months in the heat of Arizona digging up bones only to find that what you’ve uncovered is from a previously discovered dinosaur.

That’s how the search for antibiotics has panned out recently. The relatively few antibiotic hunters out there ...

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Kimble Charting Solutions

King Dollar Going To Lose Strength Here? Gold & Silver Hope So!!!

Courtesy of Chris Kimble

Is King$ and the Euro facing important breakout/breakdown tests at the same time? It looks like it in this chart!

The US$ trend remains up, as it has created a series of higher lows since the start of 2018. The opposite can be said for the Euro, as it has created a series of lower highs since early 2018.

The US$ is currently testing the top of its 18-month rising channel, as the Euro is testing the bottom of its falling channel.

What King$ and...

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Insider Scoop

The Daily Biotech Pulse: Heron Pain Drug Review Extended, Disappointment For Teva In Tourette Syndrome Study

Courtesy of Benzinga

Here's a roundup of top developments in the biotech space over the last 24 hours.

Scaling The Peaks

(Biotech Stocks Hitting 52-week highs on Feb. 19)

  • Adverum Biotechnologies Inc (NASDAQ: ADVM)
  • Akebia Therapeutics Inc (NASDAQ: AKBA)
  • Ana... more from Insider

Digital Currencies

Altcoin season 2.0: why bitcoin has been outgunned by crypto rivals since new year


Altcoin season 2.0: why bitcoin has been outgunned by crypto rivals since new year

‘We have you surrounded!’ Wit Olszewski

Courtesy of Gavin Brown, Manchester Metropolitan University and Richard Whittle, Manchester Metropolitan University

When bitcoin was trading at the dizzying heights of almost US$2...

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What US companies are saying about coronavirus impact

By Aman Jain. Originally published at ValueWalk.

With the coronavirus outbreak coinciding with the U.S. earnings seasons, it is only normal to expect companies to talk about this deadly virus in their earnings conference calls. In fact, many major U.S. companies not only talked about coronavirus, but also warned about its potential impact on their financial numbers.

Q4 2019 hedge fund letters, conferences and more

Coronavirus impact: many US companies unclear

According to ...

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Chart School

RTT browsing latest..

Courtesy of Read the Ticker

Please review a collection of WWW browsing results. The information here is delayed by a few months, members get the most recent content.

Date Found: Tuesday, 01 October 2019, 02:18:22 AM

Click for popup. Clear your browser cache if image is not showing.

Comment: Wall of worry, or cliff of despair!

Date Found: Tuesday, 01 October 2019, 06:54:30 AM

Click for popup. Clear your browser cache if image is not showing.

Comment: Interesting.. Hitler good for the German DAX when he was winning! They believed .. until th...

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Members' Corner

How to Stop Bill Barr


How to Stop Bill Barr

We must remove this cancer on our democracy.

Courtesy of Greg Olear, at PREVAIL, author of Dirty Rubles: An Introduction to Trump/Russia


more from Our Members

Lee's Free Thinking

Why Blaming the Repo Market is Like Blaming the Australian Bush Fires


Why Blaming the Repo Market is Like Blaming the Australian Bush Fires

Courtesy of  

The repo market problem isn’t the problem. It’s a sideshow, a diversion, and a joke. It’s a symptom of the problem.

Today, I got a note from Liquidity Trader subscriber David, a professional investor, and it got me to thinking. Here’s what David wrote:


The ‘experts’ I hear from keep saying that once 300B more in reserves have ...

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Mapping The Market

How IPOs Are Priced

Via Jean Luc 

Funny but probably true:


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Free eBook - "My Top Strategies for 2017"



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

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

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

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

Some other great content in this free eBook includes:


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


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About Phil:

Philip R. Davis is a founder Phil's Stock World, a stock and options trading site that teaches the art of options trading to newcomers and devises advanced strategies for expert traders...

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Ilene is editor and affiliate program coordinator for PSW. Contact Ilene to learn about our affiliate and content sharing programs.