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Which Way Wednesday – S&P 2,700 Edition

Here we go again:

As you can see from the chart (click to enlarge) we're still making one of those triangle squeezy thingy pattens but the top of the down wedge is still at our 2,740 line and it will be three more weeks of this nonsense (while earnings pour in) until it resolves itself but, with the nose of the triangle lower than where we are now (2,717) – the odds favor the short bet on /ES Futures.

We made a quick $300 per contract yesterday morning from our morning call as /ES fell from 2,700 back to 2,693 (stopping out at 2,694) but then lost $75 per contract trying to play it again as it popped over.  After that, we went to "watch and wait" mode, as planned – and that's where we are this morning, waiting to see which way things break.  There's a Beige Book release by the Fed at 2pm and then Dudley speaks at 3:15 on "Economic Outlook and Monetary Policy."

There's very little going on in the news and not much change in Fundamentals and earnings have been OK this week, with 31 (82%) out of 38 reports showing beats this week.  Of course, that's what we expected early in the season and if this can't lift the S&P back to at least 2,640 then WE'RE DOOMED!!!!  Sure, I think we're doomed anyway but that's only because of the Global Fundamentals and the market is usually pretty good at ignoring that.  

This morning, the Dow (/YM) can be shorted at 24,800, so that's a fun play but 6,850 on the Nasdaq (/NQ) Futures is always one of my favorite shorting lines and we can't argue with the classics – same strategy as yesterday, with tight stops over the lines.  

We have a Live Trading Webinar at 1pm where we'll go over some Futures Trading Techniques as well as reveiwing our 5 Member Portfolios.

We're back to the ridiculous money-printing market conditions that caused us to cash out in December.  Since Jan 2nd, our Long-Term Portfolio has already gained $72,000 (14.4%), which is ridiculous as it's annualized at over 40% gains which, of course, are unsustainable.  I said to our Members yesterday I'd like to cash out at 14.4% and call it a year and we can take the next 8 months off instead of riding out the downturn (yes, it's still coming).   Much more relaxing that way

Of course we have our hedges in the Short-Term Portfolio but we wouldn't need them if we didn't have any long risk, right?  The STP is up too and our well-balanced Options Opportunity Portfolio, which you can follow over at Seeking Alpha, is up 5.4% in month 4 while our Butterfly Portfolio is now up 6.7% and the very low-touch Money Talk Portfolio (we only adjust it when we're on the show) is up 68.1%, but that one is a holdover from last Sept, not new in Jan like the others.  

So, overall, things are going well but when they go this well I get nervous – especially when I don't see where all this found money is coming from.  There have not been a lot of inflows to the market and we're very well-diversified, so we're not benefitting from sector rotation and, if anything, we're light on the Tech Stocks that have driven the rally.  

Earnings will be put up or shut up time as the indexes are still trading near record highs – along with record-high multiples and the Economist part of my brain (which is very small, as that's all you need for Economics) says money goes to stocks OR bonds and bonds should be making a comeback as rates move higher, which they are doing – very clearly.  That makes the notes cheaper and more attractive and the 10-year is now 6% below last year's highs, which is likely to spur some dip-buying which will suck more money away from equities – perhaps violently so if earnings disappoint.  

Meanwhile, we'll be keeping an eye on our charts and we won't be too bearish if the indexes are able to hold their 50-day moving averages, which are also the strong bounce lines on our Big Chart.  We're just playing for small rejections along the way in the Futures, hoping we'll get lucky and catch a big dip soon.  As to going long – show my a run that doesn't look forced or manipulated and I might buy into it but, even as I write this, /NQ has already fallen back to 6,837, which is up $260 per contract so we can lock in gains of $250 on those and the Dow (/YM) is down below 24,775 so that's now the stop and we lock in $125 per contract gains, which is not bad for an hour's work and it certainly pays for our Egg McMuffins.

More Futures Trades and a Portfolio Review in our Live Trading Webinar, today at 1pm, EST.


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  1. It's kind of comforting to listen to the Southwest pilot yesterday being so calm talking to the air traffic guys while one of her engines exploded and damaged her plane:

    Some people get into a panic when the check engine light goes off in their car and that pilot sounds like she is ordering take-out. 

  2. That GOP tax cuts makes it easier for companies to shift jobs abroad:

    “The new law gives companies an annual deduction on their offshore earnings worth 10 percent of their offshore tangible assets (such as factories). This means that companies with $100 million worth of tangible assets offshore would pay nothing in U.S. taxes on the first $10 million worth of profits they earn,” according to the ITEP report. “Because the size of the deduction depends on the amount invested offshore, this new break creates a unique incentive for companies to move real investments offshore to boost the size of their deduction.”

    Additionally, the GOP tax bill allows companies to deduct half of their offshore income earned above 10 percent of the company’s tangible assets.

    In short, both of these tax breaks will result in offshore earnings from companies being taxed at half the rate of domestic earnings, with many companies paying nothing in U.S. taxes on these earnings.

  3. Phil / Commentary – "can't lift the S&P back to at least 2,640 then WE'RE DOOMED!!!" I believe you meant to say 2740?

  4. Good Morning, All!

    Join us for our LIVE weekly webinar, today at 1pm!

  5. Good Morning.

  6. Southwest Pilots are among the best in the biz. Very unfortunate….

  7. Crude is almost at $68!

  8. Good morning… SPWR up 9% pre-market on acquisition announcement

  9. ERX up sharply with  /CL.  Sold another 1/3.

  10. Thoughts on IBM earnings? I've got 10 of the Jan 2020 $140 calls, selling 5 Jan 2020 $160s, and selling 5 Jan 2019 $155s along the way. 

    First inclination is just to stay with it, still partially in the money with lots of time to run and can sell another call if the 2019s expire worthless?

  11. Good morning and wheeee!  

    Nice dip to start us off right and we'll just see how the day goes. 

    Keep in mind, this is what's happening with GOOD earnings – watch out if the earnings turn bad.  

    Volume has been a total joke.  120M is "normal" but that's down from over 200M last year:

    Date Open High Low Close* Adj Close** Volume
    Apr 18, 2018 270.69 271.14 270.46 270.74 270.74 5,228,372
    Apr 17, 2018 269.33 270.87 268.75 270.19 270.19 62,480,700
    Apr 16, 2018 267.00 268.20 266.07 267.33 267.33 63,405,300
    Apr 13, 2018 267.41 267.54 264.01 265.15 265.15 85,079,200
    Apr 12, 2018 265.26 267.00 265.06 265.93 265.93 68,890,500
    Apr 11, 2018 263.47 265.64 263.39 263.76 263.76 91,140,200
    Apr 10, 2018 264.27 266.04 262.98 265.15 265.15 103,529,000
    Apr 09, 2018 261.37 264.84 259.94 261.00 261.00 105,442,900
    Apr 06, 2018 263.42 265.11 258.00 259.72 259.72 179,521,200
    Apr 05, 2018 265.55 266.64 264.32 265.64 265.64 82,652,600
    Apr 04, 2018 256.75 264.36 256.60 263.56 263.56 123,715,300
    Apr 03, 2018 258.87 261.31 256.84 260.77 260.77 119,956,900
    Apr 02, 2018 262.55 263.13 254.67 257.47 257.47 186,286,300

    Offshore/StJ – Was there really ever any doubt?  It amazes me what kind of BS the American people are willing to believe from politicians.  

    S&P/Eric – Yes, 2,740 is the line on that chart, my bad, thanks.

    Oil/Dave – Don't jinx it, I'd like to short at $68.50.  Contracts roll on Friday but only 86,000 left to roll (and 12,000 might stay for actual delivery) so not too much pressure but a little.    Also, there's this:

    • U.S. WTI crude oil futures +1.8% to $67.72/bbl after hitting a fresh high going back to December 2014, and Brent crude +1.6% to $72.70/bbl, following yesterday's American Petroleum Institute report of a surprise 1M-barrel decline in U.S. crude inventories.
    • "Yesterday evening saw the API report a surprising decrease in U.S. crude oil stocks and a reduction in oil product stocks that was sharper than anticipated," Commerzbank says.
    • Perhaps also lending support is a Reuters report that Saudi Arabia may seek to push crude to $80 or even $100/bbl ahead of its planned IPO sale, a sign the world's top oil exporter will seek no changes to the OPEC production deal even though the agreement’s original target is within sight.
    • “Saudi Arabia wants higher oil prices and yes, probably for the IPO, but it isn’t just that,” an OPEC source tells Reuters. “Look at the economic reforms and projects they want to do, and the war in Yemen. How are they going to pay for all that? They need higher prices.”

    So now they are just blatant about manipulating the price for Aramco.  How is that a premise for buying Aramco when the price will be based off a manipulated commodity?  Not only that but can't we sue US Aramco investors for participating in a price cartel?  That's why they are not listing in the US – or any other country with an actual court system.

    SPWR/Learner – Fortunately, we remembered to own them.

    Short Call 2020 17-JAN 12.00 CALL [SPWR @ $8.92 $0.57] -30 1/3/2018 (639) $-6,300 $2.10 $-0.63 n/a     $1.47 $0.26 $1,890 30.0% $-4,410
    Short Put 2020 17-JAN 7.00 PUT [SPWR @ $8.92 $0.57] -20 1/4/2018 (639) $-4,600 $2.30 $-0.26     $2.04 $0.03 $520 11.3% $-4,080
    Long Call 2020 17-JAN 5.00 CALL [SPWR @ $8.92 $0.57] 30 2/8/2018 (639) $9,000 $3.00 $1.33     $4.33 - $3,975 44.2% $12,975

    IBM/CRS – I think they were fine, people are just too impatient.  They re-affirmed guidance of about $13.50/share so $150 is a pretty good price.  So far, on the LTP, we only have 5 short 2020 $145 puts we sold for $12.50, now $15.35.

    At the risk of being cursed out, we are TRILLED to see them get to our $145 target and NOW we want to make a bigger commitment but we'll let them settle in first.  

    For your more aggressive play at mystery prices, the 2020 $140s are still $21.50 and I'm sure you paid much less than that for the spread.  I'd sell some $130 puts for $10 and just 3 ($3,000) would pay for pay for a roll to the $130 calls at $27.50 so, for no net cost, you have a $30 spread that's $20 in the money and you can buy back the Jan $155s ($8) for I assume a profit and then sell more sensible short calls like 2 June $150s for $4.20 ($840).  That's only 58 out of 639 days you have to sell so 10 sales like that drops $8,000 in your pocket while you wait to see if you get the full $15,000 on the spread.  

    It's funny how people don't seem to realize how powerful Watson is and that IBM is well-justified shifting the company towards the AI future.  This is a demo of their little helper-bots, powered by Watson that are super-cheap because they are effectively dumb terminals that connect to the web (the classic IBM model).  

  12. Have May SQQQ 16-18 call spread. Just bought back the short 18’s and DD on the 16’s. Will recover on the next dip. 

  13. Looks like Russia has been beaten by SpaceX:

    "The share of launch vehicles is as small as 4 percent of the overall market of space services," Rogozin said in an interview with a Russian television station. "The 4 percent stake isn’t worth the effort to try to elbow Musk and China aside. Payloads manufacturing is where good money can be made."

    According to an independent analysis, the global launch market is worth about $5.5 billion annually. Losing its half share of this market, therefore, has probably cost the Russians about $2 billion, which is a significant fraction of its non-military aerospace budget.

  14. Wow, we are about 3 years away from being completely unnecessary.   This thing is better at picking up women than most of the boys in our high school:

    SpaceX/StJ – I think Musk should put more efforts there.  The main reason he started TSLA was to fund SpaceX anyway.  

  15. /RB/CL/Phil- RB at 2.07 from the EIA data, crude almost at 68.5! 

  16. Butterfly Portfolio Update:  OIH finally turned around and, fortunately, we were uncovered – so now it's a big winner.  Not sure I want to cover yet the way oil has been climbing and energy earnings are good, leading to maybe more service spending.  Overall, the portfolio is up $7,950 (8%) for the year at $107,950.  As I've been saying – there's no need to rush into things if you just aim to do them right!

    • DIS – This is new but doing well already, up about $1,300 and that's with DIS going nowhere, which is perfect for butterfly plays.  

    • OIH – As noted above, back on track and we'll want to sell 2020 $30 calls to cover which, at the moment are $3 but I think we can get at least $4 and then we'll sell a few short-term puts and calls as well.

    That was easy.  Maybe all our portfolios should have just 2 trades!  

  17. EIA/Dave – Huge draw, bigger than API, can't short that.  

    • EIA Petroleum Inventories: Crude -1.1M barrels vs. -0.5M consensus, +3.3M last week.
    • Gasoline -3.0M barrels vs. -0.2M consensus, +0.5M last week.
    • Distillates -3.1M barrels vs. -0.3M consensus, -1.0M last week.
    • Futures +1.85% to $67.75

  18. This thing/Phil  Well, when you consider better manners, better hygiene and less acne, you can see why….. ;)

  19. EIA/Phil- yes and not with Saudi saying they want oil at $100…. really amazing that these days they can just blatantly say that lol

  20. BBBY catching some bids on activist rumor.

  21. Little warning on MO down today about 2.60. Here a shorter type of armchair I just closed

    Sell the May 60/62.5 Strangle @ 2.20 and buy the stock @ 61.35 Protection 57.80 to 64.70. Combined return for the term 3.70%. Just put your foot in.

    At the same time I bought back the call leg Jun 18 72.5 caller for .09 cents, ready to reload after a while.

  22. Phil/GreenCoin,

    How can I place an order on the coinexchange so that I get the max benefit. So if it touches a penny the order is executed. I guess the volume will be low though.


  23. Hi Ho Silver!

  24. Phil's play on selling GIS 2020 $45 puts for $5.00 can now be sold for $5.30 – so who said you can't get good fills on Phil's plays? :)     But again, they filled too easily. So rather than use the cash generated from the put sale to buy the $40/%52.50 BCS I will wait for further weakness. If it runs away from me fine – I'll be happy with put sale profits. No reason to leverage up by adding a BCS if the conviction is not strong. There will surely be plenty of opportunities to layer on more bullish plays once price strength has been confirmed. And by saving some cash, I can use that to roll the sold puts down and out if GIS starts to weaken further.

    That,  of course, is one caveat with the artificial buy write strategy – the % gains on the net cost basis can look amazing – but you are doubling up on the bullish direction. As long as that is what you want to do – fine. But a wait and see approach can offer a conservative entry that gives time to decide the next move when more information is received on GIS' price performance.

  25. Philip Morris International (PM) earnings tomorrow. Experiencing some weakness today after a few days of strength. That weakness telegraphing over to trading in Altria (MO) – PM's half-sister operating solely in the USA. And there is some crazy option prices on MO 2020 $60 puts – I just sold a few close to the ask price (and that rarely happens) and they filled pretty easily at $7.43 – but now that window has closed. That's a nice $52.57 entry point on a relatively high dividend yield player.

    We'll probably hear from PM that conventional cigarette sales are increasing their rate of decline, whilst 'heat not burn' are on a strong roll in those markets with consumer traction. The two companies technology transfer agreement means that MO will have access to the iQOS product family – which is essentially the make or break product category for PM and MO. 

  26. smart winston..

  27. LOL 1020 – And I bet he knows all the best places to go, probably one of those guys who gets concert tickets in the first second after they are released too! 

    Saudis/Dave – Kind of sickening and other countries don't retaliate either.  I'd just raise the price of grain and such that we sell to them in proportion to any increase in oil prices – see how long they can keep it up.  

    MO/Yodi – Earnings on 26th, I wouldn't want to be short.  

    GreenCoin/Pat – Well I'm no expert as Greg does the buying and selling for PSW Investments.  Volume is very low but we've had some $50K days too (but not for a penny!).  

    Good strategy Winston.  As to MO, I'm just waiting on the weed…

  28. UCTT/Phil any idea why it's down 6%? I did the same trade set up for LTP on UCTT, but I only managed filled 12 22.5 short calls, leaving 8 naked 15 longs. I was thinking to let it continue to queue at $6.6 as we are bullish on it.

  29. Hi Winston Smoking as well? Besides my MO play did any one took my advise on smoking pot CANN up 20% today.

    Re MO Phil Short call or short put? I covered my caller with the stock and I am on down side protected to 57.80. I do not mind picking up more stock at that price IF?

  30. dave a bit hard to understand UCTT you have 12 Jan 20 22.5 short calls and 8 Jan 20 15 long calls.?? Looks like you 4 naked short calls?

  31. My personal take is that it will be many, many years before MO or PM would enter that market, if ever. 'Weed' is a commodity, generic product (still illegal for sale in many countries) where it would be difficult to create product differentiation and brand loyalty. The 'heat not burn' space is exactly the product category that MO and PM excel at exploting – high margin, easy to differentiate from the competition (vaping products).

  32. UCTT/yodi- Sorry I meant on Phil's trade idea was 20 15/22.5 call spread. I filled 20 15 longs but only managed 12 22.5 short calls.

  33. Dave contrary to many, I do not like to sell or buy singles. I always set it up as a vertical.

  34. Dave now in your case you lose on the longs and lose on the shorts. But remember 2020 is still a way off

  35. Winston – returns, great comment. I always calculate/check against actual exposure (full cash requirement/commitment) to see if still pencils out to my own comfort and risk/return limits. For example, the OLED June $95 puts I mentioned yesterday would offer a nice 30% return (188% annualized) in 59 days, using regular margin. Actual exposure (if put to me) would require $9500 in reserve, which brought returns down to 7.6% in 59 days (47% annualized). Which is still satisfactory. Generally, if it is under 20% annualized against 100% margin requirement, it isn't enough and I keep looking.

  36. UCTT/Dave – Well, they were way ahead of the market so it might be just simple profit-taking ahead of earnings.  Q4 was a bit disappointing on the profit side but 43% sales growth seemed good to me but we left ourselves generally short in the LTP with 20 naked short 2020 $22.50 calls we had sold for $6.80 and 10 short 2020 $20 puts we sold for $5.50 in March.  The puts are now $6.25 and the calls are now $4.25 with the stock at $18, so it's almost time to buy calls.  We were willing to pay $9.50 but they never filled, so we waited to see how things played out (now $7.20).   

    If you filled 20 long $15s at $9.50 and only sold 8 $22.50 calls at $6.80, that's not ideal but you can roll the 20 $15s down to the $10s at $10 for $2.80 ($5,600) and sell 12 $15 calls for $7.20 ($8,640), you should come out to the original(ish) price but with 12 $10/15 spreads and 8 $10/22.50 spreads and that means you can sell 4 short calls (the May $20s are 0.80 for example) and that should generate another few thousand (over 10 sales) while you wait.  

    Weed/Winston – Actually I bet there is a market for consistency.  PM doesn't need to sell pot for $300 an ounce, they just would love to get $20 pack, which is double what cigarettes go for and pot is probably cheaper to make and they put their rivals out of business at the same time.  I think as soon as it's Federally legal (and they are lobbying for it – see Bohner's new job) they will be taking the lead.  

    Webinar time! 

  37. PM and MO would be the Bud and Miller beers of the pot industry. Like the rise in popularity of the micro brews, it would be the same outcome for 'micro weed'…. 


    They should just buy up the YUM and SONC (s) of the world…. :)

  38. 1020 Please do not insult PM and MO with Bud and Miller. have you ever tasted a good beer?

  39. Yodi,  did dip into CANN yesterday, wish I had bought more!! Thanks….

  40. sundevils Never buy more than you happy to lose!!!!!!!!!!

  41. Yodi – Yes I have. Have you ever had a good smoke?  :)

  42. My German family members here in the states prefer:


    Brewed in beautiful Paso Robles, California

  43. Portfolio/Phil- will you be sharing them on posts or links? I think we didnt go through much on LTP.

  44. Trump speaking with Pence, Kudlow, Pompeo and Bolton by his side.  It's like the '27 Yankees with Murderer's Row except it's our country that's being murdered by this goon squad!  Now he's trying to strong-arm Abe into buying F-35s to "balance our trade".  This whole thing is taking place at a big, long table at Mar a Lago – imagine how much he got the government to spend for furnishings, etc.  

    PM/1020 – They should buy PEP and corner the snack biz – another growth industry…

    Bud/Yodi - Budwieser is very popular in Germany, isn't it?  cheeky

    Image result for budweiser germany

    Douma/Scott – Poor, innocent Russia/Syria/Trump…  

    Portfolio/Dave – Yes, that's my homework assignment for the next day or so. 

  45. Phil Bud Please do not insult a German beer drinker. Possible Americans here it's called piss beer.

    No I have never smoked pot neigher do I smoke but hold the stocks, let others do the smoking and I collect the div.

  46. Please not both PM and MO are out of the lows already!!!!!

  47. Phil – your /CL trade from the webinar.  Is there a price that you are adding more or are you stopping out?

  48. HBI new 52 week low….dangit!

  49. Bud/Yodi – I never drank that crap, even in college.  We used to run up to Canada to buy real beer.  

    Dow is barely holding green into the close, not a very impressive day.  

    • Economic activity continued at a "modest to moderate" pace through March and early April, according to the Fed's latest Beige Book. Also "modest" is wage growth, with price pressures seen as "moderate."
    • Nearly all Fed districts reported concern over trade policy, with some noting higher prices for metals thanks to tariffs on steel and aluminum imports.
    • As expected the Bank of Canada left its benchmark interest rate unchanged at 1.25%.
    • The policy statement, however, took note of the risks to growth thanks to trade policy, regulatory concerns, and lower tax rates to the south drawing capital which otherwise would have landed in Canada.
    • The loonie (NYSEARCA:FXC) has slipped about 50 pips since the news hit, now down 0.5% vs. the greenback and buying $0.7930.
    • Canadian shares (NYSEARCA:EWC) are turning sharply higher, now ahead 1.15%.
    • The combined Q1 earnings of Goldman Sachs (NYSE:GS), JPMorgan (NYSE:JPM), Bank of America (NYSE:BAC), Citigroup (NYSE:C), and Wells Fargo (NYSE:WFC) were up by more than $2.5B thanks to lower corporate tax rates, according to the WSJ.
    • While that's less than 10% of combined overall income, that $2.5B makes up for a sizable chunk of year-over-year earnings growth. Wells Fargo, in fact, would have seen earnings decline from one year ago, and Citigroup and BofA would have seen no growth.
    • This below-the-hood analysis might explain the lame stock price reaction to big headline earnings beat announced by each of these five lenders in recent days. Not included, in the WSJanalysis, Morgan Stanley (NYSE:MS) also reported a sizable beat this morning, and it too is now in the red.
    • IBM's worst day at the market in years gets worse, with the shares down 7.8% after margins missed estimates and dim guidance in last night's earnings.
    • At $148.40, IBM shares are still not quite as low as on Feb. 8 ($147.59).
    • Earlier, Morgan Stanley stuck up for the stock, expecting further margin improvement ahead and more achievable second-half estimates in maintaining an Overweight rating and $198 price target.
    • Other analysts were more cautious. Cantor Fitzgerald stuck with a Neutral rating and $152 target, saying margins are still an open question and it sees "a return to consistent organic growth and margin expansion as necessary for sustainable multiple expansion from present levels."
    • Without a big tax benefit, IBM might have missed estimates, BMO's Keith Bachman says. The company has "some work to do" and BMO's staying on the sideline (price target $175) until there's better confidence of margin improvement.
    • Earnings call slides
    • Earnings call transcript

    • Taking the stand in the landmark Justice Dept. trial over AT&T's (T -0.4%) deal to buy out his company Time Warner (NYSE:TWX), CEO Jeff Bewkes minced no words when asked about the fundamentals of the government's case.
    • Asked about a claim that the combined company would be able to use blackout threats to demand more money for carriage of Turner networks, Bewkes says "I think it is ridiculous … It is not how this works."
    • Time Warner would have a lot to lose in a long blackout that would be "catastrophic for us."
    • As for the DOJ's claim that AT&T/Time Warner could collude with Comcast (NASDAQ:CMCSA) to undermine burgeoning over-the-top services like Sling TV and YouTube, that "makes no sense" — it's in Turner's interest to be on those platforms, he says, and it also doesn't make sense that HBO would be restricted as a promotional tool: "We need to have as many subscribers as we can get."
    • The merger is in response to two "tectonic shifts," he says: new competition from Internet streaming and the growth of targeted digital advertising.
    • Bed Bath & Beyond (NASDAQ:BBBY) is up 3.30% on talk circulating around Twitter finance feeds of interest by Jana Partners.
    • Shares of the retailer were up 6% earlier before falling back.
    • It's not the first time that M&A or activist investor chatter has stoked shares of BBBY.
    • Supervalu (NYSE:SVU) is 7.55% lower as the grocery store stock continues to see an elevated level of volatility off M&A speculation with activist investors in the house.
    • Credit Suisse weighed in earlier on Supervalu, reinstating coverage with an Underperform rating and price target of $15.
    • The global lithium industry will need $10B-$12B of investment over the next decade to meet surging demand because of the anticipated boom in electric vehicles, says an executive at Sociedad Quimica y Minera de Chile (SQM +2.7%).
    • Demand likely will grow by 600K-800K metric tons of lithium carbonate equivalent over the next 10 years, according to SQM's senior commercial VP Daniel Jimenez.
    • SQM currently has annual lithium carbonate production capacity of 48K metric tons in Chile, which Jimenez says will expand to 70K tons by mid-2018 and to 100K tons in 2019.
    • SQM also has 6K metric tons of annual capacity for lithium hydroxide, used in high-nickel content batteries, which Jimenez says will more than double to 13.5K tons by this June.
    • Other potentially relevant tickers include ALB and FMC.
    • SunPower (SPWR +10.1%) surges after agreeing to acquire SolarWorld Americas for an undisclosed sum, in a deal SPWR says will make it the largest U.S. manufacturer of solar panels and may trim the impact of Pres. Trump's tariffs on solar imports.
    • SPWR says it will inject fresh capital into the SolarWorld Americas factory in Oregon, which it plans to use to make its P-Series shingled solar panels as well as SolarWorld’s legacy products.
    • SPWR is based in California but most of its manufacturing is in the Philippines and Mexico; the company had strongly opposed the solar trade case brought last year by U.S. manufacturers including SolarWorld which said they could not compete with a flood of cheap imports.
    • SolarWorld Americas is a subsidiary of insolvent German company SolarWorld AG; the deal must be approved by U.S. and German authorities.
    • Energy stocks lead the market higher as crude oil extends its breakout to the highest level in more than three years following bullish inventory data, as the U.S. reports a 1.1M-barrel drop in the week to April 13; WTI now +2.3% at $68.07/bbl and Brent +2% at $73.01/bbl.
    • "It's a bullish report with the across-the-board drawdowns in everything," says John Kilduff of energy hedge fund Again Capital, noting "summer-like demand for gasoline."
    • Several energy stocks are posting 52-week highs, including CPE +3.3%APC +2%HES +2%WLL +1.8%WPX +1.8%SRCI +1.6%VLO +1.5%RSPP +1.4%PBF +1.4%PSX +1.4%VNOM +1.3%SU +1.1%HFC +1.1%MPC +1.1%.
    • Among other energy leaders: CRZO +6.4%OAS +5.9%NFX +4.1%MUR +3.6%CPG+3.6%FET +3.5%SM +3.4%NBL +3.4%DVN +3.3%XOG +3.3%CVE +3.3%XEC+3.3%APA +2.6%BTU +2.5%QEP +2.1%ECA +2%RRC +2%.

  50. /CL/Felt – I want to wait and see what happens tomorrow as rollover pressure mounts.  Could be painful though. 

  51. I too, never drank Bud. In the late seventies, early eighties, it was Lowenbrau.

    Today, my go-to Pilsner is Bitburger. I get those at Trader Joes….

  52. Now you talking!

  53. Some corrections and clarification to some of the information/misinformation propagated today on the board. 

    MO not only was the Miller of the beer industry but will be the Miller of any industry because MO friggin' bought Miller 25 years ago, and then went and sold Miller to South African breweries for a 30% share of the newly (at the time) created company SAB Miller about 15 years ago.

    Budweiser requires a major clarification because the piss water that is called Budweiser in the USA would never be drunk by any right minded European, they prefer to drink a beer called Budweiser which is brewed in the former Czechoslovakia (now the Czech republic). European brewed Budweiser is a classic brew in every sense of the word. But I of course defer to Yodi who needs to be the arbiter of this discussion. I can only say – Bitte ein Bit!!!!!!

  54. :)

  55. /SI – Phil, what would drive silver and the dollar to move in lockstep today?

  56. Silver – oops! My usual dollar chart window had /SI in it.. doh!

  57. First time I tried GOGO on a flight.  What a piece of crap.  The only site that was remotely fast enough to be useful though was PSW.

  58. What was the /CL play from the webinar? I missed the webinar today

  59. HMNY – dollar drop at the close, looks like I picked the wrong week to go long on this one!

  60. Helios and Matheson Analytics Announces Proposed Public Offering of Common Stock and Warrants

    Wed April 18, 2018 4:40 PM|Business Wire

    NEW YORK--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- Helios and Matheson Analytics Inc. (HMNY) (NASDAQ: HMNY) (“HMNY”), a provider of information technology services and solutions and the 92% owner of MoviePass Inc. (“MoviePass”), the nation’s premier movie-theater subscription service, today announced that it has commenced a best efforts underwritten public offering, subject to market and other conditions, to issue and sell shares of its common stock and warrants to purchase shares of its common stock. The shares of common stock and warrants to purchase shares of common stock are being offered as units. The shares of common stock and warrants will be issued separately. There can be no assurance as to whether or when the offering may be completed, or to the actual size or terms of the offering. HMNY may use the net proceeds from this offering to increase the Company’s ownership stake in MoviePass or to support the operations of MoviePass and MoviePass Ventures; to satisfy a portion or all of any amounts payable in connection with previously issued convertible notes; and for general corporate purposes and transaction expenses. The Company may also use the proceeds to make other acquisitions.

  61. Mr Mocha, they announced another public offering of shares but in the press release it says it is issueing shares to purchase shares of its common stock and increase its ownership in MoviePass.   Not exactly clear on what is going on here. 

  62. HMNY – This was also part of a previous shelf registration statement.

  63. /CL/webinar/Phil- can someone post this trade please?

  64. Bud/Winston – I know it's different Bud – they refuse to change the name and can't get AB to change theirs, of course so it's forever tainted now by association.  Stella's, Tuborg Gold, Guiness and Newcastle are my favorites when in Europe.  In Canada I love Brador, which is 6% Molson and Sleeman Honey Brown.  

    /SI/Scott – I think there's a short squeeze in silver as a lot of people short it to hedge gold longs.  Also, silver has a lot of catching up to do as gold gets back over $1,350:

    WPM already predicted this:

    GOGO/Tangled – Good to hear we were working.  I took great pains to keep our site thin on bandwidth.  GOGO has 2 systems and the old one totally sucks.  

    /CL/Japar, Ravi – We were just shorting at around $68.50 with conviction into the rollover, looking for $68 though it's $68.75 at the moment so may have to be happy with $68.25.

    HMNY/MrM, Learner – We knew this was coming as they obviously needed money to move forward. Have to ride it out now.

  65. CL/Phil- Thank you. Didn’t think you were going long, as there is no premise. But wanted to understand the avg for short. thx. 

  66. ! Tuborg Gold, the beer of danish kings.

  67. sorry Phil but it looks like you were a little early with the champagne!

    FU HMNY!!!!!!!!!!!!

  68. Short CL @ 69.16

    HMNY.. this is becoming criminal .. dilution again ! in less than what 60 days ..!

  69. Good morning,

    Crude is running wild, sense a big pump and dump?

  70. Good morning!

    Glad I slept through /CL hitting $69.26 overnight.  Back to $68.77 now and I still have 4 short at $68.45.  Yesterday, the NYMEX strip was:

    Click for
    Current Session Prior Day Opt's
    Open High Low Last Time Set Chg Vol Set Op Int
    May'18 66.68 68.08 66.56 67.78 10:12
    Apr 18


    1.26 86909 66.52 86798 Call Put
    Jun'18 66.69 68.06 66.54 67.78 10:12
    Apr 18


    1.27 265461 66.51 552205 Call Put
    Jul'18 66.38 67.72 66.28 67.46 10:12
    Apr 18


    1.22 48486 66.24 233060 Call Put
    Aug'18 65.88 67.14 65.78 66.91 10:12
    Apr 18


    1.16 21723 65.75 154011 Call Put
    Sep'18 65.31 66.52 65.20 66.28 10:12
    Apr 18


    1.08 15052 65.20 230549 Call Put

    And today we have:

    Click for
    Current Session Prior Day Opt's
    Open High Low Last Time Set Chg Vol Set Op Int
    May'18 68.75 69.27 68.62 68.79 06:45
    Apr 19


    0.32 13561 68.47 62498 Call Put
    Jun'18 68.73 69.26 68.63 68.79 06:45
    Apr 19


    0.32 159799 68.47 574524 Call Put
    Jul'18 68.39 68.91 68.30 68.48 06:45
    Apr 19


    0.33 13522 68.15 234833 Call Put
    Aug'18 67.78 68.30 67.70 67.89 06:45
    Apr 19


    0.34 8238 67.55 159641 Call Put
    Sep'18 67.04 67.59 67.00 67.18 06:45
    Apr 19


    0.31 4781 66.87 233157 Call Put

    So they only moved 20,000 contracts and I'm pretty sure tomorrow is the last day and figure they'll get down to 12,000 so 50,000 still need to be rolled and June is filling up.  The count yesterday was 1,257,000(ish) open contracts through Sept and now it's 1,265,000 so they haven't got rid of any barrels – just moved them around.

    Keep in mind we only actually import 7Mb/day and Sep is 165 days away so 1.155Mb is what the ENTIRE country will import through Sept and here we have 1.257Mb of FAKE orders just for this one (of 5) major storage facilities.  

    Related image

    Tuborg/Rexx – The crap they sell in the US is not the same at all.

    HMNY/Jabob – We knew they were going to dilute us.  It's better than borrowing.  Our $175M company is selling stock to raise $150M in cash so it SHOULD drop about 50% and anything less than a 50% drop means people like what they are doing.  Of course, we have this conversation every month and you still seem surprised/confused:

    Submitted on 2018/03/13 at 10:35 am

    HMNY/Jabob, Albo – It's basically a penny-stock start-up.  Up or down 10% is nothing.  The whole market cap is $128M but they have 3M subscribers at $10/month = $30M x 12 = $360M and certainly losing money but if they can show they are going to hit 6M subscribers then they are NFLX or AMZN and can really pop if people get enthusiastic about them.  

    That's what I told you last month, when they fell from $5 to $4 and now at $3 (the low in between was $2.57) you have to decide if you want more or you want to bail.  This is an adult decision you need to make on your own, don't blame me if you stay in and they dilute us down to $2 when it's time to add more again.

    As a general note on diluting companies:  If you own a stock at $175M at $4 share and they sell $150M worth of stock.  Now you own 53% of the stock you had + $75M.  In HMNY"s case, there was are 45M authorized shares so you own the stock + $1.66 in cash.  Of course the company plans to spend that money but anything less than a $1.66 drop is in your favor for now and then it's up to the company to make good use of the cash and get your share value back to $4 before the next time they need $150M but, if they can do that, the next round will dilute you much less and, if they grow on track and keep costs down – they'll start to look exciting to investors, like NFLX or AMZN.

    Meanwhile, indexes down just a bit and oil just spiked back up over $69 as the Dollar turns down.  F'ing Bloomberg not helping with this:

    It looks like Saudi Arabia's $80 oil goal is within reach

    Meanwhile, Arnold has this to say about Oil Companies (who he's suing):

    “I don’t think there’s any difference: If you walk into a room and you know you’re going to kill someone, it’s first degree murder; I think it’s the same thing with the oil companies.”

    “This is no different from the smoking issue. The tobacco industry knew for years and years and years and decades, that smoking would kill people, would harm people and create cancer, and were hiding that fact from the people and denied it. Then eventually they were taken to court and had to pay hundreds of millions of dollars because of that,” Schwarzenegger said. “The oil companies knew from 1959 on, they did their own study that there would be global warming happening because of fossil fuels, and on top of it that it would be risky for people’s lives, that it would kill.”

    “We’re going to go after them, and we’re going to be in there like an Alabama tick. Because to me it’s absolutely irresponsible to know that your product is killing people and not have a warning label on it, like tobacco,” he said. “Every gas station on it, every car should have a warning label on it, every product that has fossil fuels should have a warning label on it.”

    Sold 4 more /CL short so avg now $68.92 on 8 short contracts.  I'm hoping $69.50 holds but I'll be down about $5K there.   Obviously, I want to lighten up as quickly as possible now. 

    The 4 new contracts will stop out over $69.50 and then I'll likely go to 8 again around $70, where the loss would be $7,000ish so I'd need a $1 drop to get even.

    The key is the risk of me doubling down at $69.45 is small as I'm only risking $200-$400 on the new contracts BUT, if we are rejected, then I make twice as much on the way back down.  If not, then only $400 (10%) worse off than I would have been.

  71. Yodi / beers:

    120% with you …lol.

  72. Phil / oil

    Any idea if oil is going to $80 to help Saudis IPO?

  73. Oil/Albo – Into July, I think they can pull it off but it's all sustained by production cuts and fear of supply cuts in Syria, Iran, Argentina – all speculative crap that will wash out over time.  Also, the BS story of US demand being up.  On the whole, I hope they hit $100 so we can short the crap out of them but I doubt they can pull that off.

  74. Cl/Phil-What’s your exit plan for the 8 contracts? Break even?

  75. No Phil, i am not surprised or confused at all.

    Of course, you are never wrong…

    just another PSW sloppy pick that you are happy that it dropped over 50% since you said it was a "value" and then changed to a speculative play after your timing was way off, of course..

    but now we can add to it and lower our cost basis and hope it turns around, doesn't go BK, and recovers in a year or so…. kind of sounds like ftr all over again.. hmmm…

    I have a small position so it doesn't move the needle but i am sure there are plenty others who don't want to be scolded by you that are getting annoyed with all of these picks that keep hitting 52 week lows while the market is at or near all-time highs.


  76. Exit/Dave – I'll certainly cut back to 4 if I get even with tight stops on the rest.  I'm pretty sure about my premise that there will be selling pressure on the contract rollover so I just want to see an 0.50 dip.

    Gartman/Jabob – Well we have about 80 long positions and yes, you like to dwell on the 10 that are not going well but, frankly, you are a constant annoyance to me and contribute nothing to the conversation so I'm going to ignore you for a while so I can get back to more productive conversations.