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Which Way Wednesday – S&P 2,100 Yet Again

This is getting tedious

The S&P gets to 2,100 and we short /ES Futures at 2,100 (with tight stops above the line) and Russell (/TF) Futures below the 1,200 line and Nikkei (/NKD) Futures below the 20,000 line and then, tomorrow or Friday, I'll tell you how much money we made shorting and you'll say "why do I never catch these great trade ideas" and I'll say it's because you're not patient enough to wait for the pattern to reset itself and just make the obvious play.  

This is the 11th time the S&P has been over 2,100 since May and, so far, it's been like a little money machine for us all year long on the short side.  I know this time may be different and the last 10 times may have been different too, which is why we stop out if we don't get confirmation from the other indexes that things are toppy but, when it works – it's good for $250, $500, $1,000+ PER CONTRACT in the Futures at $50 per point to the downside. 

SPX WEEKLYAs usual, the Dow is at 17,850 (/YM) so that's a confirming line we like to watch but the Nasdaq is now leading us higher at 5,156 but that's still, unfortunately, shy of our November high of 5,163 so let's not call this time different until we see that beat and THEN we'll look for the July high at 5,231.  That's right, we've done all this before and nothing is different this time at all!  As noted by Dave Fry:

Markets move higher given belief the ECB will cut interest rates Thursday. This belief trumps a host of bad economic data so far this week. Tuesday bulls ignored a substantial drop in manufacturing activity as manufacturing reports showed substantial declines. The PMI Mfg Index declined to 52.8 vs prior 54.1 and the ISM Mfg Index imploded to only 48.6 vs prior 50.1. Construction Spending did improve modestly to 1% vs prior 0.6%. But at the same time retail store sales slumped 10% year over year on the wacky Black Friday holiday shopping.

Other problems are front and center as Puerto Rico makes a last minute payment to creditors averting a default but it’s only a temporary solution. Next up is what’s taking place in South America’s most important economy—Brazil. It will release data tomorrow showing the economy there is entering arecession depression.  So yeah, there’s trouble we can’t ignore, or can we?

Can we?  Yes we can – especially in December, where the volume is low and the Bulls are scared.  That's why we love our Futures bets – good for the quick in and out because it's very hard to have commitments in this market – especially bearish ones!  We are bullish on oil at $41.35 this morning (/CL in the Futures) as we expect some OPEC minister to say something bullish-sounding heading into Friday's OPEC meeting in Vienna.  

Again, these are patterns we teach our Members to PATIENTLY wait for so we have set-ups that have high probabilities of success.  That doesn't mean they always work but, if we keep making high-percentage trades and manage our positions appropriately – just being right 60% of the time can have a huge impact on our portfolios.  

As you can see, our Long-Term Portfolio is back over +40%, which is exactly our 2-year goal for gains, so it's not like we don't benefit from all this market manipulation but, as you can also see, we are keeping a huge amount of cash on the sidelines with most of our long positions in the form of short puts (and we just added another yesterday on TGT), which give us a substantial discount on our net entries (see "How to Buy a Stock for a 15-20% Discount").  

Once again I have to fight the temptation to cash out the entire portfolio as 40% is a very nice gain and there's no sense risking it.  In fact, the LTP is up $19,146 (3.8%) since our pre-Thanksgiving review on 11/23 – who says we're not bullish?  Well, I do.  As I've said, we are "Cashy and Cautious" and you can see our cash percentage in the LTP but our STP (Short-Term Portfolio) is where we keep our bearish hedges and that portfolio has LOST $9,.354 over the same 10 days.  

So we're still making money in a bull move – just not as much as we've mitigated 50% of our potential gains with our bearish hedges.  As we touch the top yet again into Christmas – it will be the bearish hedges we will be putting our gains into as clearly the bullish positions don't need much improvement if they are capable of making over $2,000 per day, right?  

The Short-Term Portfolio has very much benefited from this strategy this year in the previous 10 times we went short at the top (and no, this does not track our Futures trading – that's just for fun).  Maybe this time we'll be wrong but, if so, then our STP will lose but our LTP will win – that's the nature of the Balanced Portfolio Strategy that is the core principle we teach to our Members at Philstockworld.  

This is one of the hardest things we try to teach our traders – that sometimes you are making TOO MUCH MONEY and you need to stop.  While it's really great to say the LTP popped $19,000 in 10 days, that would be over $700,000 a year – almost doubling the size of the portfolio in 12 months.  CLEARLY that's not realistic so CLEARLY we need to hedge our gains so we don't end up giving them right back on the next market correction.  

So we take a percentage of our ill-gotten gains (thank you manipulators!) and we put it into downside hedges like the S&P Ultra-Short (SDS), which is all the way down to $19.05, down from $25 in August, when we had the flash-crash on the 24th.  $19 is where SDS bottomed out before in early November and it quickly popped back to $20.70, which is almost a 10% gain in a couple of weeks.  

While 10% is nice, at PSW we teach our Members how to use options to leverage a position like this and, for example, you can put your foot down and say SDS is not likely to go below $18, which is down 5% and implies a 2.5% gain in the S&P, to 2,152.  So, if we want a hedge into the Holiday, we can sell the SDS March $19 puts for $1.25 and use that money to pay for the January $18 calls at $1.30 and sell the Jan $20 calls for 0.48 for net 0.82 on the $2 spread.  

  • Sell 20 SDS March $19 puts for $1.25 ($2,500 credit) 
  • Buy 20 SDS Jan $18 calls for $1.20 ($2,400 debit)
  • Sell 20 SDS Jan $20 calls for $0.48 ($960 credit)

Combined with the short puts, the net on the whole spread is a 0.43 credit or $1,060 using 20 contracts.  If SDS goes over $20 and stays there through January options expiration (15th), then you will collect $4,000 for the spread and, if SDS stays over $19 through March, you will keep the $1,060 credit as well for a total profit of $5,060 from a position you got a $1,060 credit to begin with.  

That's how we like to hedge!  The best thing about this position is you can only lose if the S&P rises from here and that would mean the long positions you are protecting would be making money to offset any losses you may have on your SDS longs.  Also, it's not an all or nothing position – you can stop out the spread before it falls below net 0.52 and then you have your $1 net credit and the S&P can't hurt you unless it's over 2,150 by March and, if you are managing your longs correctly – that should make you happy, not sad!  

So there's hedging for dummies and I hope you enjoyed it.  Futures are far more fun but also far more dangerous and not the sort of thing we do in a single lesson but we do give weekly Live Trading Webinars to our Members where we often demonstrate our techniques and, if you are too cheap to join us – you can wait for the occasional free one.

As usual, the broad-based NYSE is keeping us from being gung-ho bullish as it's still 500 points below it's Must Hold line and the Dow and Russell are barely over theirs but the S&P and the Nasdaq are up in the stratosphere and that's why we key on them for shorts at the moment.  This stuff isn't complicated folks, just good old-fashioned trading logic…


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  1. Good Morning!

  2. Something should be done about these for-profit colleges – there is just so much fraud and misrepresentation. Clearly the free market model is failing here:

    When I researched a story about student debt, one statistic surprised me. Although the national student debt has skyrocketed, the average borrower carries less than $30,000. That’s not chump change, but with student debt at 1.3 trillion dollars, $30,000 per person seems a little low.

    The numbers don’t seem to add up, and it turns out, for-profit colleges are a big reason for that. According to a report from the U.S. Department of education, for-profit students only make up 13 percent of the “total higher education” population, but they represent 31 percent of all student loans (and about half of all loan defaults). For-profit students represent a disproportionate percentage of the national student loan debt because their loan balances are so high.

  3. Vanguard causing some pain to Wall Street:

    On average, an active manager has turnover that is 10 times more than a Vanguard index fund, where average annual turnover is about 3 percent to 4 percent.* One extra percent of turnover translates to about an extra basis point in cost, equating to another $3 billion or so a year in lost trading revenue.

    This $20 billion dent is only expected to grow larger. It took Vanguard 32 years to reach $1 trillion in assets, eight years to get to $2 trillion, but then just three years to get to $3 trillion. At this rate, Vanguard will be removing $40 billion in revenue each year from the financial industry by 2020, equivalent to a 20 percent hit to revenue based on today’s numbers.

  4. We won't have Black Friday in 2030… It will only be Cyber Monday on Amazon:

    Screen Shot 2015 11 30 at 8.06.07 AM

    Of course, extrapolations and estimations are sometimes wrong….

  5. stjean – I think those estimates will be correct. Have you been to a DDS JCP JWN KSS or M lately?


    Not me.  My family, reluctantly….. :)

  6. Good morning!  

    White Christian men are armed and angry. We need to track them.

  7. Stores / 1020 – My wife dragged me into a KSS store the other day and reluctantly was my attitude! I hate these places… 

  8. phil what is your opinion on when oil bottoms.  I remember you had mentioned it before quite can't find it the post

  9. The stores are a triple U.  Uninspired, Unhappy, Unbearable…..

  10. ….except for COST….. ;)

  11. and the bottom forming keeps getting a lower bottom..

  12. Phil – The beach is a good place to start… :)

  13. Phil / KMI – S&P just downgraded their credit outlook to negative ( did not change it) stock at 21….

  14. /SI /Phil

    Silver back at $14.

    Would you Buy here for long term. Thanks.

  15. STJ / AMZN – would be interesting to put that Sales chart ( or yearly revs) of Amazon and rest of industry against profits…. that would look scary.  They may no profits, but putting all retailers out of business by cutting prices and driving them out…. later they will raise prices and screw the world.

  16. Colleges/StJ – They are like cockroaches, they refuse to die.  

    Wow on Vanguard – getting too big to fail?  

    AMZN/StJ – Wow, way to cherry-pick the data!  That AMZN PR machine is working 24/7 to convince people they are taking over the World.  DDS – $6.7Bn, JCP – $12.3Bn, KSS – $19Bn, JWN – $13.5Bn and M – $28Bn is $80Bn and no, they are not growing but just WMT ($485Bn) is up $20Bn since 2013 and AMZN is tracking for $107Bn, which is up $30Bn from $74Bn so this whole chart is BS (and just north america makes no sense as $107Bn is their TOTAL sales, as was $74Bn in 2013.  

    I just get so annoyed by these misleading data points – especially when they appear in major media outlets that SHOULD have some sort of editorial oversight.   How can this stuff not be INTENTIONALLY misleading when it's so blatantly false yet is published and repeated over and over again in the MSM as if it were a fact?  

    Correct/1020 – Sure, some stores are doing badly but COST, for example, is up $10Bn over the last two years (10%).  On the whole, there is X amount of consumer spending and all the retailers fight for each Dollar and yes, AMZN is taking market share away but revenue clearly does not translate into profits – all they are really doing is making all of retail unprofitable for everyone and the only "gains" AMZN actually makes is in their stock price.  

    Oil/RS – I called it long this morning into the OPEC meeting (now $41 on /CL) but I'd sell on a pop – I don't think those guys will be able to keep it together long enough to have an effective policy change (but I wouldn't short either).  

    Dollar popping back over 100 is not helping commodities this morning.  

    MBA Mortgage Application

    • MBA Mortgage Applications
    • Composite Index: -0.2% vs. -3.2% last week.
    • Purchase Index: +8.0% vs. -1.0%.
    • Refinance Index:  -6.0% vs. -5.0.
    • 30 year mortgage rate at 4.12% vs. 4.14%.

    Fed's Tarullo says looking into smaller banks' concerns

    • Upcoming speeches from Fed Chair Janet Yellen will be critical in setting market expectations for a possible hike to the U.S. benchmark interest rate, which has held near zero since December 2008.
    • Yellen is scheduled to speak today at the Economics Club of Washington at 12:25 p.m. ET and then testifies tomorrow morning before the Congressional Joint Economic Committee.
    • Also looming large is Friday's jobs figures, the last big piece of data ahead of the Fed's Dec. 16 meeting, so today's ADP payroll report will likewise be important to the markets.
    • Eurozone inflation held steady at a lower than expected 0.1% in November, giving further encouragement to ECB president Mario Draghi to pump up the central bank's contested bond-buying program tomorrow.
    • In March, the ECB launched a more than €1T stimulus plan running through September 2016 in order to snap a long period of low or negative inflation in the region, but given recent economic figures, that program will likely get a boost.
    • Euro -0.4% to $1.0596
    • Previously: Eurozone PMI, unemployment displays modest recovery (Dec. 01 2015)

    This is really strange given all the good car sales data:

    • AutoNation (NYSE:ANreports reports retail new vehicle sales fell 6% to 25,555 units in October. Same-store retail new vehicle sales were down 7% during the month.
    • Retail new sales by segment: Domestic -4% to 7,696; Import -8% to 11,884; Premium Luxury -3% to 5,975.

  17. KMI rating agency was Moody's not S&P

  18. Beach/1020 – Man, I was just on one yesterday – so annoying to be back….

    The beach is a place where a man can feel

    He's the only soul in the world that's real

    Fed/Scott – That's what's keeping the markets up.  

    KMI/Batman – Yep, that was the expectation yesterday.  

    /SI/DM – Yes, I'd go long at $14 but tight stops below as there's not a lot of support under $14.  Long-term I'd go with SLW and not risk getting killed in the Futures.  

    And what Batman said about retail!  

  19. Phil / KMI – S&P and and Fitch both said the increase in ownership stake in NGPL did not impact their credit rating outlook … Moody's changed outlook from stable to negative.  20 / 21 may be a floor.  Do you see them cutting div in the future?  Is there a position on this getting back to 24  /25?  Also, what about owning and selling calls?

  20. Phil – When your kids choose to attend college in So.Cal., you'll be able to dip your toes more often….

  21. Love my Costco.  Have found that the best time to go is 5-5:30 PM.  The freebie eats are gone and you can just stroll thru the store without all that congestion.  The Costco nearest us has also has a liquor store.  Can't beat the Kirkland vodka at about $14 for a 1.75L bottle.

    Some Chinese stocks up today, i.e. BABA, ASHR, and WYNN which is very much a Chinese play with their Macau properties.  Have been building a position in WYNN.

  22. SCO sold Jan 150 calls for 3.00 – looks like easy $ but who knows?

  23. Don't know what that pop in oil was about but I sold and glad I did!

  24. KMI/Batman – No change for me from last time:

    Submitted on 2015/11/13 at 10:25 am

    KMI/Batman – They are very enthusiastic about LNG making a lot of business for them and I agree.  Still, it's a long-term thing and, if it doesn't pan out, then they may have to cut expenses, including the dividend.  I would still play it very conservatively (as I suggested before) because things could get worse before they get better and, of course, in this environment (where we expect a broad sell-off) I don't see why you would be so anxious to deploy your cash anyway. 

    A bit less risky for an entry now than a few weeks ago with the additional 20% discount but clearly not a "safe" ply by any measure.  I'd just pick up the 2018 $20/25 bull call spread for about $1.75 (and not a penny over $2) if I wanted to speculate on it.  That's +$3.25 (185%) if all goes well so you can risk, for example, 1.5% of your portfolio by putting 3% to work with a 1.5% stock and, if all goes well, your whole portfolio pops 5.5% on this one trade.  That's about as much as I'd speculate on this one and probably I'd still be scaling in with 25% now and another 25% if they can hold $20 this month and them maybe more next Q.  

    College/1020 – When my kids leave for college, I'm hitting the road regardless!  

    Wow, oil just spiked to $42 for no particular reason and now back to $41.30.  

    WYNN/Albo – Getting reasonable down here for sure.  

    Income is off by a mile this year, they will be lucky to clear $250M for their $7Bn market cap (p/e 28) BUT, in prior years, they were dropping $700M to the bottom line, clearing better than 15% of revenues so you have really good operators just navigating a rough time.  The $9Bn in debt is a bit scary but they have $2Bn in cash and solid real estate assets so, even if they wrote of Macau as a massive loss ($7Bn in 3 casinos), they could probably survive it.  

    If they hadn't JUST spent $4Bn on the latest Macau project at the worst possible time, I'd like them a lot more but fun for a toss since you can sell the 2018 $45 puts for $8.50, which puts you in at net $36.50, which is still almost 50% off the current price so let's sell 5 of those in the LTP. 

  25. Oil up 1.8Mb, Gasoline up 135,000 and Distillates a disaster – up 3Mb.  Demand still sucks and that means $41 probably won't hold but we'll still look for a long once it settles. 

  26. F A A N G on a tear

  27. Phil/TGT 

    You looked at TGT for the LTP yesterday. Would TGT also be a possibility for the Butterfly? 

    If not what would eliminate it from consideration?

  28. NFLX on yet another tear.  Any news?  New all time high

  29. FANG/RS – Well, those are the stocks that have been driving the S&P all year – why stop now?  

    250 S&P points (10%) from just those 8 stocks or we'd be at 1,850 – which is our Must Hold line, which is based on the Fundamentals of the real stocks.  

    Oil holding $41 is impressive, considering the crap report.  

    • EIA Petroleum Inventories:
    • Crude +1.2M barrels vs. -0.5M consensus, +1M last week.
    • Gasoline +0.1M barrels vs. +1.5M consensus, +2.5M last week.
    • Distillates +3.1M barrels vs. +0.3M consensus,  +1.1M last week.
    • Futures -2.4% to $40.84.


    Of course, no production cut can work unless all members agree to a plan and implement it cohesively. Aside from a select few Gulf States, most of the OPEC membership is expected to heavily lobby Saudi officials to cut production.

    But in reality, Saudi Arabia will be the one to determine OPEC’s next step. As the only country with significant spare capacity, not to mention cash reserves and the political wherewithal to actually impose production cuts, Saudi Arabia will decide whether or not OPEC moves to cut its output quota.

    ALK/Scott – Keep in mind the airlines are up on record low oil prices – they may not last.  Hopefully they are hedging the hell out of this for years to come.  

    TGT/Gerry – Well we like them for the LTP because we think they should be a lot higher and that means we won't be comfortable in the Butterfly Portfolio with them unless they make a nice move up first.  I'd say that $77.50 (the 200 dma) would be a good spot to enter and, if I were seeking to establish a butterfly position on TGT, I'd start by buying 2018 $85 calls while they are cheap ($4.50) and selling Jan $77.50 calls for $0.62 and the Jan $67.50 puts for 0.85 and then see how that goes.  

    On a good move up, THEN I'd buy the long put (maybe the 2018 $60 puts, which are currently $5.65 if they get to $4.50 or less). 

    NFLX/Rustle – They don't even need news anymore now that they are part of FANG!  I think Cramer said "FANG" over 100 times this week already.  

    intl 4Q15 op losses


    Now you know why GE makes those commercials where the family is more impressed with the kid who works at the idiotic App developer than the kid who is working at GE.

  30. Nice alignment in the Futures with S&P testing 2,095 and 17,850 on /YM, 4,725 on /NG and 1,200 on /TF (/NKD just failed 20,000 again, now 19,975).  As noted this morning – if it works the first 10 times – may as well do the same thing on the 11th!  

  31. This is getting interesting again:

    The S&P did not like the $1.05 Euro in March and April but now it's Christmas and silly things like major market fundamentals shouldn't stand in the way of a good time.  

    Don't forget, tomorrow is the ECB rate decision and expectations are very, VERY high thanks to Draghi's over-promising.  If he delivers – that will be very interesting.

    There goes 2,095 on /ES, that's the stop now.  

  32. Consumer has not been as strong in this recovery:

  33. FU UNG!!!

  34. Bought some UWTI at $6.23 for a scalp.  Risking about 12 cents.

  35. Forecast maps make it look like we're skipping winter entirely:

    Ugh, I don't feel like answering these questions for Int'l Biz Times – how about you guys do it?  

    Your comments on Yahoo and what it's best course of action is going forward. I wanted to check in with you and see if you could send over their thoughts via email this morning. Basically, I want to know about these five things:
    - Should Yahoo fire Marissa Mayer?
    - Should they proceed with the Alibaba spinoff?
    - Should they sell to a strategic investor?
    - Should they go private like Dell did?
    - Should they sell off their core Internet business?

  36. Question/Phil

    1 Yes, she's just a hedge fund activist puppet

    2 Sure, why not.  Leave the crappy part of the company (yahoo) to trade as a penny stock

    3 Try and find one that wants them

    4 Nope, good way to lose all your money instead of other people's money

    5 To who?

  37. Answer… why you askin me? Isn't that what a board of directors is for?

  38. Yahoo should fire Marissa Mayer.  Why not bring in Ron Johnson ?  He did such a great job turning around JCP. 8-)

  39. Interestingly, YHOO's value has very little to do with their Web Business 

    The thing is that Yahoo Japan and BABA don't drive revenues to the bottom line and neither does cash.  YHOO's total revenue last year was $4.6Bn and maybe $5Bn this year and, as you can see, that's all from the Web Division, where they barely throw off $300M in profits (7%).  The vast majority of their "income" for the past few years has been selling shares of BABA, which is back around the IPO price of $85. 

    So there's no point in buying YHOO stock when it's essentially BABA and some cash – you can do that in your own account without the proven incompetent middle-man (or woman, in this case).   

    I'd say Yahoo can get about $4-5Bn for their Web division on a good day and I think it's worth it because a better operator could make much better use of their 900M users than Yahoo does – even at 0.10 per year per visitor, the returns would be double what YHOO is currently getting.   The thing is – what does it cost any company to build to that level and how much time – YHOOs users could be used to spring any unicorn into the stratosphere.  

    Someone like Pintrest, Spotify or Snapchat could drop $1Bn in cash and finance the rest with YHOO's own cash-flow and probably double the valuation of their company going into an IPO next year.  Flipkart could also make a bold move and gamble that they can really become the next AMZN by snatching almost 1Bn shoppers in one fell swoop but then they'd have to execute fast enough to keep the eyeballs coming – though I'd argue that YHOO has already driven away pretty much everyone who is inclined to leave anyway.  

    And what Rustle said!  

  40. Yahoo/Phil – Ballmer wanted to buy it a few years ago.. maybe this time!


    Red Mountain getting involved with IRBT.  They suggest suggest selling the Defense and Security businesses. But wait, that is why they are our stock of the century. We're waiting for a billion dollar order from the defense dept. Read the news for IRBT's response.

  42. UWTI – Moved stop down to $6.06.  Bought a little more at $6.12.

  43. Stopped out of UWTI.  Now we'll probably get the bounce I was looking for.

  44. IRBT/Stock – Not very committal either way.  

    Wow, /RB got clobbered!  

    I guess we won't be using any forms of energy anymore.  Or resources…

    But the economy is so good that the Fed is tightening and stocks are at all-time highs.  Makes total sense, right?

    Yellen is talking but saying nothing at all.  

    Transcript of Fed Chairwoman Yellen’s speech

    Yellen Says Economy Is Ripe for Fed Interest Rate Increase

    Why Yellen thinks conditions are ripe for the Fed to raise rates this month


    The first rate hike, when it comes, "does not mean we have embarked on a predetermined plan" to raise rates

    Cited amount impact of Fed's policies on UE in footnote 15 of her Sept. speech:

  45. Phil/USO

    @12.48 I guess BDC had a view to get in @12.50.


  46. Resources / Phil – Priced in euros (or yen) for example, you might get a slightly different chart!

  47. USO/Pat – Other than INCREASING their quota, I can't imagine what OPEC can do this week to make things worse.  Still, there's a lot of bullish bets on oil that may be unwound and we may see a move to $35 before it really finds a bottom – I don't think I'd want to be too long on oil or USO until we see what actually happens, rather than speculating ahead of a massive inflection point. 

    It's not really a complicated issue and this chart will be going to 55 in 10 more years 

    Even those estimates may get blown away if there's a breakthrough with electric cars (which Tesla keeps promising).  

    2/3 of all oil is used for transportation and this is happening all over the World (same cars delivered everywhere) – how is the long-range picture for oil going to improve between now and 2025?

    So, while I think oil will bottom out around here ($40) and drift back to $50 or $55 – I don't see it ever coming back to $100 without some kind of massive disruption and, more likely, $40s will become the new normal with $50 being the dead top.  This is very bad for the long-term prospects of the energy sector as well.  

    And don't forget that, in the 10 years that consumption of oil falls off a cliff – Moore's law dictates that solar power will become 10x more efficient and 10x cheaper.  At that point, even if we all had to drive big-assed SUVs to hold the giant batteries – almost everyone will be driving electric cars.  

    Rescources/StJ – Different but not enough to make them look good.  

  48. Phil, 

    Wonder if we get the 2:15 express today, back to over 1200 on /TF?

  49. US Silica (SLCA) showing surprising strength today in the face of dropping oil and stock indices.  I have no idea why, but never look a gift horse in the mouth.

  50. There goes 2,090 on /ES – that's now the stop (+$500) 

    NKD coming below 19,950 and should go lower as the Dollar is falling back to test 100 after Yellen (though all bets are off with Draghi tomorrow).  

    Beige Book is out (I didn't even know!).

  51. CAFE Standard / Phil – When you look at it, even if a family keeps a car for 10 years, by 2025, they will save an additional $800/year just with gas. For the lower middle class it's the biggest tax cut that they have ever received… But for some reasons, these CAFE standard are being portrayed as bad while the $150 check the same people "might" get when they have actual tax cuts are the solution to our economic problems. I guess it's all in the packaging!

  52. Packaging/StJ – More than anything else, I think pushing through this MASSIVE policy change will be the thing that Obama is remembered for.  He really changed the World by making this one simple policy.  

    BBook Notes:

    The economy expanded modestly across most of the U.S. in October and November amid rising consumer spending, while a stronger dollar helped keep inflation in check.

    Eight of the 12 Fed districts called the expansion “modest,” while the Minneapolis region reported moderate growth, according to the Beige Book released Wednesday in Washington. Conditions were “steady” in the Kansas City district and “leveled off” in New York, while growth reported by the Boston Fed was “somewhat slower.”

    “Consumer spending increased in nearly all districts,” with robust car sales and lower gasoline prices boosting purchases of trucks and larger vehicles, the report said. While “labor markets continued to tighten modestly,” prices were “generally steady.”


    Pay gains were described as “generally stable to increasing,” with most districts saying wage pressures were only building for skilled workers and employees in short supply.

    The report coincides with Fed Chair Janet Yellen’s comments in a speech earlier Wednesday that she is increasingly confident the economy is growing sufficiently to achieve labor-market improvement and higher inflation. The policy-setting Federal Open Market Committee is scheduled to meet Dec. 15-16 and is widely expected to raise its benchmark interest-rate target for the first time since 2006.

    Many districts said the recent pickup in hiring was driven by temporary staffing agencies, according the survey, which was based on information gathered by the Richmond Fed before Nov.

    20. The exception was the Chicago region, where “activity had slowed” at temporary-help firms.


    Cheap energy costs and a rising dollar were weighing on prices, the report said. The Dallas Fed noted that a trucking company was passing on lower fuel costs to consumers, while contacts in Boston reported the stronger currency “put downward pressure on prices.”

    Manufacturing was “mixed,” while the housing market improved at a “moderate pace,” the report said. Commercial loan demand strengthened in most areas, it said.

    If not for autos and their 8-year sub-prime loans – we'd be in BIG TROUBLE!  

    By the way, my brother just took over a Cadillac dealership – in case anyone wants one.  

  53. 2,085 is now the stop – wheeee!  

  54. Rolled March GLD long calls (again) down to March $102 strike, GLD in a diagonal (short Jan 109s that are staying put).

    Rolled March USO long calls down and out (again) to April $13 strike.  Leaving USO uncovered (previous cover expired).  Will sell December or Jan cover if gets a bump up.

  55. I'll take an escalade esv if he's giving them away:)

  56. Cadillac/Phil – my son, a manic car-guy, -loves- the CTS-V Wagon.. which i just noticed was discontinued in 2014. Go figure.

    Good to see white walls on your brother's caddy! Yeah Baby!

  57. Back in UWTI at $6.  Glutton for punishment.  Risking a dime this time.

  58. WSJ HEadline:

    Fed’s Janet Yellen Expresses Confidence in U.S. Economy Ahead of December Meeting

    Fed chief says gains in labor market bolster her confidence that inflation will return to 2%

  59. Your Cassandra-like pronouncements had me perfectly positions for this drop with SDS, coining money, thanks Phil, you really are the Wizard of Us!!!!.

  60. Another day another mass shooting.  

    FD reports mass shooting in California - reports are 3 shooters with assault rifles, masks & armor. None in custody at the time.

    The chances of your grandma dying in a mass shooting this holiday season are substantially more than her getting ran over by a reindeer.

    2,080 is now the stop on /ES!   Then 2,075 (just to save time).  

    SLCA/Sibe – Flat is surprising strength?  I guess the single-family housing news was BTE.

    Pronouncements/ZZ – Glad you were able to take advantage.  As noted above, it's easy to look smart when you are patient.  

  61. lol…nobody listened to Cassandra, and she had a problem with that. Good thing you let Phil know you're paying attention, zeroxzero, or who knows………

  62. Phil/GLL

    closing on 120!!


  63. Snow: "Good judgement is the product of experience…..and experience is the product of bad judgement."  I've ignored a few of Phil's pronouncements, to my chagrin.

  64. So 12 people or more get gunned down in our streets and nothing will be done. But if it were classified as a terrorist act we would invade or bomb one country! 

  65. Sub-$40 oil.  That should be good for Middle Eastern peace prospects. Dangerous times, and not getting any better.

  66. Amazing-the beat & killings go on and on and on. It doesn't count unless it's you, or yours that get gunned down. Pathetic.

  67. Bouncing already – only 20 people shot and mostly poor people so no one cares. 

    GLL/Pat – This is why we don't rush to put more money in something – much cheaper to roll now. 


    12 people/StJ – Very true.  We'd be at war but goes back to your morning cartoon. These guys are still shooting apparently. 

  68. oil, gas, steel… dismal.

    but FB and NFLX and GOOG, oh boy!

    this is a really messed up world.

  69. Just a note on TGT-they are closing down the store in Superior, Wi. There is a WAlfart and a Kmart within 1 block of the store. Probably not enough traffic for all three, but it may be a warning? or the right thing to do to cut costs.

  70. Phil / GLD – i have a the following

    Long March '16 104 call ( 3.25) no at 2.12

    Short Jan '16 111 Call (.5)  now at .12

    Looking to close out the Jan short call and  adding a 109 call at .55.  Does this look like the right roll?

  71. Phil a week ago you scolded me for pointing out the weather scenario I saw playing out based on the forecast models I saw, yet today you are joining me in worrying about it. No longer concerned about panicking people out of their positions? So are you still long UNG April calls? Could those still do OK in your opinion?

  72. At least 12 said killed in California mass shooting

    Obama orders flags to remain permanently at half-mast. "It's just easier this way" said the president, being briefed on yet another shooting

    There may be no greater metaphor for modern America than the golfers trying to finish their 18 across the street from today’s mass shooting.

    Oops, looks like they got away!  

    TGT/Pirate – They are pretty ruthless about cutting stores that don't make their numbers (after they try to fix them, of course).  Been a good policy overall. 

    On WednesdayTarget (TGT) confirmed that the locations across the U.S. would be closing by January 31, 2016.

    A Target spokesperson said "the decision to close a Target store is not made lightly."

    She added that before the company decides to make a closure, a store's financial health is evaluated over a long period of time. "Typically, a store is closed as a result of seeing several years of decreasing profitability," she said.

    "Eligible" employees will be given the choice of transferring to another store. Target has 1,799 U.S. stores.

    Since taking the reins last year, Cornell has not hesitated to pull the plug on unprofitable parts of the business, most notably Target’s ill-fated, poorly executed expansion into Canada which cost the company $7 billion.

    Earlier this year, Target announced a $2 billion, two-yearcost savings plan that included the elimination of several thousand jobs in the Minneapolis area, where it is headquartered. It also announced it would pour $1 billion into its e-commerce as it looks to compete with Walmart and in particular.

    GLD/Batman – The short was not enough protection for the long (obvious now).  I'd start by buying that back and hoping you get a bounce on the ECB announcement tomorrow and then we'll all see what adjustments we want to make to long positions.  

  73. Phil / LGD – Agreed on the protection…  Ok that makes some sense…  I''ve sold the Short 111 and am naked at the moment on the 104 calls..  watch it for now.


    Thank You


    on KMI – still haven't pulled the trigger on this one….  

  74. UNG/craigs – I rolled down my thankfully small April 10 calls to April 9s, but no way am I adding any more. Looking over UNG performace, in 2015 never had a 'recovery' at all. Will be partially covering with front month 9s on any blip up just to cover theta decay.

  75. Indexes falling into the close but tomorrow is a total wild-card with the ECB early AM.

    Thursday, December 3, 2015
    00:00   INR   Nikkei Services PMI (Nov)     53.2  
    01:30   EUR   French Unemployment Rate (Q3)   10.4% 10.3%  
    02:00   BRL   IPC-Fipe Inflation Index (MoM) (Nov)   1.02% 0.88%  
    02:15   ZAR   South Africa Standard Bank PMI (Nov)     47.5  
    03:15   EUR   Spanish Services PMI (Nov)   56.6 55.9  
    03:45   EUR   Italian Services PMI (Nov)   54.0 53.4  
    03:50   EUR   French Markit Comp. PMI (Nov)   51.3 51.3  
    03:50   EUR   French Services PMI (Nov)   51.3 51.3  
    03:55   EUR   German Composite PMI (Nov)   54.9 54.9  
    03:55   EUR   German Services PMI (Nov)   55.6 55.6  
    04:00   NOK   House Price Index (YoY) (Nov)     5.60%  
    04:00   EUR   Markit Composite PMI (Nov)   54.4 54.4  
    04:00   EUR   Services PMI (Nov)   54.6 54.6  
    04:30   GBP   Services PMI (Nov)   55.0 54.9  
    04:30   ZAR   Business Confidence (Nov)     88.4  
    04:50   EUR   Spanish 10-Year Obligacion Auction     1.746%  
    04:50   EUR   Spanish 5-Year Bonos Auction     0.567%  
    05:00   EUR   Retail Sales (MoM) (Oct)   0.2% -0.1%  
    05:00   EUR   Retail Sales (YoY) (Oct)   2.7% 2.9%  
    06:00   BRL   Industrial Production (YoY) (Oct)   -10.4% -10.9%  
    06:00   BRL   Industrial Production (MoM) (Oct)   -0.2% -1.3%  
    07:00   BRL   Markit Composite PMI (Nov)   42.8 42.7  
    07:00   BRL   Markit Services PMI (Nov)   43.5 43.0  
    07:30   USD   Challenger Job Cuts (Nov)     50.5K  
    07:30   USD   Challenger Job Cuts (YoY)     -1.3%  
    07:45   EUR   Deposit Facility Rate (Dec)   -0.30% -0.20%  
    07:45   EUR   Interest Rate Decision (Dec)   0.05% 0.05%  
    08:30   USD   Continuing Jobless Claims   2,187K 2,207K  
    08:30   USD   FOMC Member Mester Speaks           
    08:30   USD   Initial Jobless Claims   268K 260K  
    08:30   USD   Jobless Claims 4-Week Avg.     271.00K  
    08:30   EUR   ECB Press Conference           
    09:00   MXN   Gross Fixed Investments (MoM) (Sep)     -0.50%  
    09:00   MXN   Gross Fixed Investments (YoY) (Sep)   5.20% 2.90%  
    09:45   USD   Markit Composite PMI (Nov)     56.1  
    09:45   USD   Services PMI (Nov)   56.5 56.5  
    09:50   USD   Bloomberg Consumer Confidence     40.9  
    10:00   USD   Factory Orders (MoM) (Oct)   1.4% -1.0%  
    10:00   USD   Factory orders ex transportation (MoM) (Oct)     -0.6%  
    10:00   USD   Fed Chair Yellen Testifies           
    10:00   USD   ISM Non-Manufacturing Business Activity (Nov)   60.2 63.0  
    10:00   USD   ISM Non-Manufacturing Employment (Nov)     59.2  
    10:00   USD   ISM Non-Manufacturing New Orders (Nov)     62.0  
    10:00   USD   ISM Non-Manufacturing PMI (Nov)   58.0 59.1  
    10:00   USD   ISM Non-Manufacturing Prices (Nov)     49.1  
    10:30   USD   Natural Gas Storage   -51B 9B  
    13:10   USD   FOMC Member Stanley Fischer Speaks           
    19:00   NZD   ANZ Commodity Price Index (MoM)     6.9%  
    19:30   AUD   Retail Sales (MoM) (Oct)   0.5% 0.4%  
    20:30   JPY   Average Cash Earnings (YoY)   0.4% 0.4%  
    20:30   JPY   Overtime Pay (YoY) (Oct)     1.40%  
    Friday, December 4, 2015
    00:00   JPY   Household Confidence (Nov)   41.8 41.5  
    02:00   EUR   German Factory Orders (MoM) (Oct)   1.2% -1.7%  
    03:00   EUR   Spanish Industrial Production (YoY) (Oct)   3.6% 3.8%  
    03:15   CHF   CPI (MoM) (Nov)   -0.1% 0.1%  
    03:15   CHF   CPI (YoY) (Nov)   -1.3% -1.4%  
    04:00   IDR   M2 Money Supply (YoY) (Oct)     12.70%  
    04:00   NOK   Norges Bank regional network Survey     0.06  
    04:10   EUR   Retail PMI     51.3  
    05:00   EUR   GDP (QoQ) (Q3)     0.3%  
    05:00   EUR   GDP (YoY) (Q3)     1.6%  

  76. If oili is $35, what would USO be at?

  77. short flyer on FXE.

  78. Scott I agree. Is there any chance tomorrow's inventory will show a draw after a bit of cold this week? If there is and it pops at all, I would get out as well. Of course, that will be the start of the rally, right? 

    I am hoping for a small recovery in oil tomorrow, before it falls to $35. Phil, do you think it could fall ahead of the OPEC meeting or were you looking at this as an aftermath if they hold production at current levels? 

  79. GLD/Batman – Sometimes you have to figure things can't get much worse!  blush

    Unless it's UNG, apparently…

    USO/Burr – Well oil is $40 and USO is $12.50 and $35 is 87.5% of $40 and 87.5% of $12.50 is $10.94.  And you thought algebra would never come in handy in real life!  

    FXE/ZZ – Interesting.  I agree the downside is probably well baked in unless Draghi does something epic tomorrow.  

  80. UWTI – Scrapped the last trade up four pennies.  Total waste of everyone's time.  My bad !

  81. Oil/Craigs – As I've said, it's all about whatever this or that minister says but I do like the $40 line bullish as long as it holds.  

  82. Draghi could hire Alan Greenspan.

  83. Natural gas is going the way of coal it seems! And so is oil… And solar is not doing that great. How do we generate our electricity these days?

    Of course, with the current El Niño, we might not need that much heating anyway. Apparently temperatures are 3.0 degrees celsius above normal in the Pacific region:

    That's huge! But apparently not a problem unless you happen to live in the path of hurricane and have nowhere else to go which is a bottom 99% problem anyway so who cares!

    Meanwhile, in the Pacific Ocean, a number of records fell. According to NOAA, this is the first year since reliable record keeping began in 1971 that the eastern Pacific saw nine major hurricanes. Hurricane Patricia became the strongest hurricane recorded in the Western Hemisphere in terms of both maximum winds, at 320kph, and lowest air pressure, at 879 millibars. Hurricane Sandra, which formed in November, was the strongest hurricane in the eastern Pacific so late in the year, with a maximum sustained wind speed of 235kph.

    The central Pacific, too, saw its largest number of storms since the satellite record began in 1971, including eight hurricanes. Three major hurricanes—Ignacio, Kilo, and Jimena—spun at the same time east of the International Dateline, the first time that has ever been recorded.

  84. SLCA/Phil – Well it finished up only .06, but it was up substantially through the day while the markets sank and oil tanked.  It is also up nearly 7% in the past 3 weeks.  So yes, given their business model and the state of the industry I consider that showing strength.  I haven't read anything to make me believe it will continue (yet).

  85. The GLL roll to the $115's filled today at $2.00.  Just an FYI.

  86. ~~Cowboys keep Tony Romo on roster, hope he can re-join them in playoffs.  At 3 & 8 ?

  87. Albo / Cowboys – LOL Jerry needs a new GM…..  Romo has not played a full season in 4 years…. less than 1/2 last two seasons…  

  88. Batman – You're right.  But they are a different team when he is in there.  The schedule favors the Redskins.  But the Giants have a good chance.  At any rate whoever wins the division is most likely one and done.

    BTW – I joined you in KMI today.  Bought some stock and sold the Jan 17 $20 puts.  If you didn't see it, there is an interesting comment by Dan Dicker on CNBC today.  It's on Yahoo Finance.

  89. AVGO up huge in aftermarket. 

    BRCM trading up as well.

  90. JPMorgan Chase & Co., Bank of America Corp. and Citigroup Inc. are among eight large U.S. banks that had credit grades cut one level by Standard & Poor’s on the prospect that the U.S. government is less likely to provide aid in a crisis.

  91. Even in Brazil, a country that is no stranger to crisis, the recent, rapid-fire succession of financial, economic and political blows has been breath-taking.

  92. Two decades ago, Tyler Xiong and his parents had to live in a commune guided by the strict socialist teachings of Mao Zedong.

  93. All across the Americas, drilling rigs are being idled as oil prices hover near six-year lows. In Colombia, more than 57 percent have been pulled; in Mexico, 42 percent.

  94. When BlueCrest Capital Management told investors Tuesday it would no longer oversee money for outsiders, one thing founder Michael Platt didn’t mention was that clients had already pulled billions of dollars this year.

  95. Oil breaking below $40 a barrel ignited losses in equity markets, with energy producers and mining stocks driving declines in Asia, while the dollar solidified its ascent after Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen reinforced expectations for a December rate hike.

  96. Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc., dealing with an E. coli outbreak that has sickened dozens around the U.S., has tightened its supplier standards, putting its longstanding promise to buy food locally in jeopardy.

  97. A week after the arrest of Brazil’s billionaire Andre Esteves, the lack of guidance from Brazilian authorities on the future of his troubled investment bank BTG is exacerbating investors’ nervousness.

  98. One major Microsoft Corp. investor wasn’t happy with the level of disclosure Wednesday at the company’s annual shareholder meeting: Steve Ballmer.

  99. There is strength in numbers — provided your particular gang isn’t a bunch of infighting walking wounded. Iran’s OPEC buddies fall into the latter category, which is unfortunate both for them and for hair-trigger oil investors trading on every muttered aside ahead of Friday’s OPEC meeting.

  100. Here’s one takeaway from data Thursday that showed South Korea’s gross domestic product in the third quarter was better than initially estimated, growing at the fastest pace in more than five years: Net exports were the biggest drag on the economy’s growth since 2013.

  101. Asian stocks fell for a second day, following U.S. equities lower, as a drop in oil weighed on energy shares.

  102. Republican presidential candidate Ted Cruz is taking advantage of his status as a U.S. Senate subcommittee chairman to convene a hearing next week that appears aimed at casting doubt on the scientific theory that global warming is at least in part man-made.

  103. A  from a top Republican campaign strategist reveals the depth of the party’s concern over the possibility that Donald Trump will become the party’s presidential nominee, suggesting that at least some officials see that as a threat to control of the Senate. 

  104. In May, at a San Francisco talk to mark the 50th anniversary of Moore’s Law, Intel co-founder Gordon Moore said he was surprised chipmakers have kept it going for so long. Two months later, Intel Chief Executive Officer Brian Krzanich said on an earnings call that the pace is indeed slowing—doubling chip density now takes closer to two and a half years, rather than two.

  105. Countries have submitted national emissions plans and targets to the UN in the run up to COP21 in Paris. Although emissions are the core component of these figures, many countries have also set out targets for the growth of renewable energy.

  106. Like most people who buy recreational vehicles, Warren Buffett made his decision quickly. He heard about Forest River in the summer of 2005 and bought the company just seven days later.

  107. Mario Draghi is set to become the new first line of defense for the world economy, whether he likes it or not.

  108. says Republicans have “an abysmal record” when it comes to picking Supreme Court justices, and it is something the Texas senator promises to rectify if he’s elected president.

  109. Puerto Rico made a crucial round of bond payments Tuesday, buying precious weeks to negotiate with its creditors over ways to reduce the island’s crippling debt.

  110. Not much holiday cheer is going around some of Citigroup’s research teams.

  111. It’s been just a few weeks since Credit Suisse released its 2016 forecast for the S&P 500, and already the bank is downgrading it. 

  112. Malaysia’s ringgit fell after Brent crude’s slide to a six-year low dimmed prospects for Asia’s only major net exporter of oil.

  113. The 18th-century statistician behind the latest search for Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 is so influential in modern-day logic that his work has been used to show the existence of God.

  114. The euro traded near its lowest since April as investors braced for a European Central Bank meeting with economists certain that policy makers will expand stimulus.

  115. Iron ore may be on the cusp of dropping into the $30s a metric ton as the biggest producers expand supply and the onset of winter in China dulls demand that’s been hurt by the slowdown in growth in the world’s top user. Miners’ shares retreated in Sydney.

  116. As the last of the OPEC ministers make their way to Vienna, Venezuela and Ecuador said they would seek curbs on production at Friday’s meeting in order to boost prices.

  117. Most Japanese shares fell, led by energy explorers after crude oil plunged below $40 a barrel.

  118. For the world’s ailing metals-mining industry to have any hope of a turnaround, more producers may have to go belly up.

  119. If you’re in to hooking up, you’ve probably tried Tinder. If you’re a small company, and you want to hook up with another company, Axial Networks Inc. can be your go-between.

  120. Just as investors are taking their bets on a weaker euro off the table before Thursday’s European Central Bank meeting, Goldman Sachs Group Inc. says it’s time to wager on.

  121. Iran is entering the global economy, and some investment-bank analysts are starting to get pretty excited. Most outsiders see Iran as an anti-Semitic Islamic state run by extremists who tolerate terrorism (as long as it’s not in Iran). But Iran…

  122. The speculation about who might purchase Yahoo’s struggling internet business has already begun, following a Wall Street Journal report on Tuesday that the company’s board would consider a sale, among other strategic options, during meetings this week.  The obvious candidates…

  123. Major geopolitical events have often been followed by volatility in the economy and financial markets. World War II helped to shake the US out of the Great Depression. The Civil War set the economy of the Southern US back for generations. Now you can…

  124. When previewing tomorrow’s widely telegraphed announcement by the ECB, Bloomberg says “Mario Draghi has no room to back down.” It notes that economists surveyed by Bloomberg “unanimously predict the European Central Bank will boost stimulus again this week, less than…

  125. U.S. healthcare spending grew 5.3% last year to $3 trillion, another sign that a historic slowdown in medical inflation may be ending, a new federal report shows.The massive expansion of insurance coverage under the health law and rapid growth in…

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  127. After the worst monthly performance since 2013 and the weakest close since February 2010, it appears “managed money” has piled in to the momentum trade. According to CFTC, hedge funds have never been more short gold (slashing long bets and…

  128. Santiago Ortiz is lying, eyes closed, on the bed. He is no picture of repose. Above his jaundiced, swollen belly, his thin chest is pumping fast. His face twists into the pillow. An oxygen mask is strapped tight across his…

  129. When he talks about the Apple Watch, Tim Cook likes to cite the 97% user satisfaction results from Wristly, a Web-based research firm that conducts weekly surveys of Apple Watch owners. He may not be as happy with this week’s…

  130. When it comes to how Silicon Valley is really working right now, we rely on a very concentrated number of voices to tell us how they think it is going. But First Round Capital — a seed-stage firm in San Francisco…

  131. LONDON The outlook for the global economy next year is darkening, with a U.S. recession and China becoming the first major emerging market to slash interest rates to zero both potential scenarios, according to Citi. As the U.S. economy enters…

  132. Alpesh Patel – i really enjoyed his book on spread trading. Here is Alpesh doing a live forex trading video, a little different from Phil's style. Long, but "live" on Dec. 2…

  133. Albo / Cowboys – Yep Romo does perform better now than before, but performs less days….  My son and i were going down there for the eagles game in December,  But now i think we will stay in SF and watch the Warriors / Cavs play instead…  


    KMI – i was not able to fill the 2018 20 calls ( looking for just under 4) maybe tomorrow….  I read the Article… it's interesting that he does not see the Div at risk…  If it's good for two years, i think things will get better.  They also have a large 9.5% Preferred that they service for next 2 years – then it converts to stock.  

  134. batman

    I can't help myself, but I am a long time Cowboys fan from the 70's.  It's really hard for me to watch my team anymore.  I feel bad for Romo, but unfortunately, as long as Jerry Jones remains the GM nothing will change.  A constant state of mediocrity.  

    Do you live in San Fran.?

  135. Alpesh – arg. not so much actual trading in that one. In the end is selling a training package.  very salesy. but some good introductory concepts that if you have not already gone through, are good to do (position sizing, choosing stops, making a business plan, etc).  Phil is WAY more real trading! ;-)

  136. Almost no one — from the Bank of Canada, to currency traders to Wall Street prognosticators — grasps how far the Canadian dollar must fall to revive the nation’s economy after the collapse in oil prices, according to Morgan Stanley.

  137. U.S. health-care spending jumped 5.3 percent last year, the biggest increase since President Barack Obama took office, as millions of people gained insurance coverage under Obamacare.

  138. Connecting political rhetoric to acts of terrorism is a dicey business, easily subverted by ideological or partisan agendas. In a nation that not only encourages but requires robust freedom of expression to nurture a dynamic culture, condemnation of political speech should be a last resort. Yet political actors who aspire to leadership should honor that freedom by taking the trouble to speak responsibly.

  139. Why would the North Atlantic Treaty Organization want a new member state with a military of 2,000, a population slightly larger than Luxembourg’s and about 8 percent of the economic output? 

  140. President Vladimir Putin called on the international community to form a joint front under the United Nations to defeat terrorism, as he lashed out at Turkey over the downing of a Russian warplane.

  141. A U.K. services gauge rose more than economists forecast in November as new business picked up.

  142. Cash-strapped OPEC nations from Venezuela to Iran are piling pressure on Saudi Arabia to reduce oil output, yet the group’s biggest producer insists it will only do so if countries outside the organization join the effort.

  143. Britain’s shares were little changed after two days of gains for the FTSE 100 Index.

  144. Accelerating economic growth in the 19-nation euro region hasn’t yet left its mark on inflation.

  145. China, the world’s biggest carbon emitter, repeated plans to upgrade coal power plants in the next five years in a bid to crack down on the kinds of pollutants and heavy smog that this week blanketed northern parts of the country, including Beijing.

  146. The European Union’s biggest natural gas producer has joined most of the rest of the 28-nation bloc and become reliant on others as it posted its first quarter of imports.

  147. French unemployment rose to near a record high in the third quarter, the latest sign that President Francois Hollande is struggling to meet a pledge to create jobs.

  148. European equities rose toward a three-month high on confidence the region’s central bank will unveil a ramp-up of its stimulus program.

  149. As the flood-ravaged Indian city of prayed for respite from torrential rains, a trade body said losses to businesses from the record downpour could reach more than ($2.2 billion).

  150. When Vladimir Putin makes his annual speech to parliament on Thursday, observers inside and outside Russia will watch for any softening of presidential rhetoric against the U.S. and Europe as part of calls for a global fight against terrorism.

  151. Saudi Arabia, the world’s largest crude exporter, may propose an eventual OPEC production cut of 1 million barrels of oil a day that may take effect in 2016, Energy Intelligence Thursday, citing a group delegate it didn’t identify.

  152. As burlesque acrobats twirled on poles and champagne flowed in the palm-lined courtyard of a 1930s Miami mansion, actor Sylvester Stallone was focused on Art Basel Miami Beach fair.

  153. FOR ANYONE unsure what sort of an event was about to unfold in Robarts Arena, in sunny Sarasota, on November 28th, the elephant was a clue. It stood meekly outside the entrance, a long-suffering fairground veteran, with “Trump: Make America…

  154. Yellen Signals Fed on Track to Raise Rates in December U.S. Wages Show Signs of Breaking Out Capital Account Terror’s Lasting Toll Is More Social Than Economic Fed Beige Book: U.S. Economy Expanded at ‘Modest’ Pace Private Payrolls Rose by…

  155. Category: Think Tank Please use the comments to demonstrate your own ignorance, unfamiliarity with empirical data and lack of respect for scientific knowledge. Be sure to create straw men and argue against things I have neither said nor implied. If…

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  181. Good morning! 

    Well, if you didn't like yesterday's sell-off, don't worry, it's mostly reversed this morning.  

    Of course we're still waiting on the ECB (7:45 with conference at 8:30) and Mester is speaking at the same time so heavily coordinated action by the Fed and ECB has people very optimistic.

    /TF just hit 1,200 again so shorting again but a lot more nervous than yesterday.  /ES has not managed to get back to 2,100 and /NKD failed at 20,000 early this morning.  

    SPY  5  MINUTE



    After a bit of brief excitement, Nat gas resumes it's sell-off.  Oil is perking up a bit but /RB is still just under $1.30 and I like them both long – still expecting oil-boosting statements from OPEC (but a quick profit-taking mode there). 


    Dollar testing highs, Euro testing lows:




    Yesterday's S&P 500 was pretty broadly sold:

    12-2-2015 8-08-19 PM

    Very strange that EWZ went up 2.5% – that country is on the edge of a full-blown Depression but I guess bad news is good news in Brazil too.  

    Crazy day ahead – going to be fun!  

  182. This is funny (but in Texas or Florida they'd be dead!):

  183. Gift for every doctor this Christmas:

    I guess I can change that to "My Financial Analysis" as well, but a more limited market. 

    Nice Hanukkah gift:

    “What is truly incendiary is demanding that someone who is seeking the highest office in the land stop lying,” Fiorina said.


    Photo credit:
    Nahdlatul Ulama, the largest independent Muslim organization in the world, has set its sights on ISIS.


    And we have now officially gone off the deep end when this guy is a leading contender for President:

    As for the tactics he would use, Trump said he would go as far take out the family members of ISIS.

    “[I]t’s a horrible thing. They’re using them as shields. But we’re fighting a very politically correct war,” he said. “And the other thing is with the terrorists, you have to take out their families. When you get these terrorists, you have to take out their families. They care about their lives, don’t kid yourself. But they say they don’t care about their lives. You have to take out their families.”

    I really don't know how many ways this could be made more clear

  184. Nice sell-off on ECB leaving rates UNCHANGED – ROFL!!!  

    Dollar plunging will support the markets but this is just TFF…

  185. I need one of those mugs…it's insane what people blindly accept as fact

  186. Oh sorry, not unchanged – down from 0.5% to 0.3% and they say more policy announcements at 8:30 press conference.  How confusing…

  187. I'm telling you, Jeff – that would sell out at any doctor's convention.