Sign up today for an exclusive discount along with our 30-day GUARANTEE — Love us or leave, with your money back! Click here to become a part of our growing community and learn how to stop gambling with your investments. We will teach you to BE THE HOUSE — Not the Gambler!

Click here to see some testimonials from our members!

Friday Market Follies – Will Non-Farm Payrolls Give us a Flip or a Flop?

Image result for monks roller coasterWheeeee – what a ride!  

Down 800, up 700, what a fun day in the market.  Now we're only down 750 from Monday's open so we can make that up by 11, right?  I certainly hope you have your hedges as we literally could go 750 points either way off the Non-Farm Payroll Report at 8:30 this morning – especially if it shows more than 250,000 jobs created as that would mean the Fed really needs to raise rates before wages start eating into Corporate Profits and spur inflation.  Even though wage inflation is "the good kind" that makes the economy stronger – the Fed doesn't give a crap about that – the Fed is a banking cartel, not some Government entity there to help you and they are only interested in protecting Corporate Profits, specifically Banking profits, they could care less whether or not you have a job – what they care about is that, if you do have a job, you are paid as little as possible so you have to take out lots of loans and pay interest to the Banksters.  That is literally their primary function.

Why does the Fed not want inflation?  Because you take a fixed loan on your home of, for example, $250,000 and put down a $50,000 deposit and, at 4.5%, you pay $1,266.71/month (not including taxes, insurance, etc) for 360 months which works out to $458,933 (plus your $50,000 deposit) paid out on your $300,000 home.  The problem the Banksters have, however, is that the last $1,266.71 you pay them isn't worth as much as the first $1,266.71 you paid them due to inflation so they want inflation to be as low as possible to maximize your effective payments.  THAT is what the Fed is concerned about.  

Keeping inflation down means keeping wages down, which has the side-benefit of keeping you perpetually in debt and, hopefully, they can one day sock you with a 8 or 10% mortgage and then they really start raking in the profits!  At 8%, that same $300,000 house with a $250,000 mortgage goes up to $1,834.41/month and that's $665,596.45 paid over 30 years on that $250,000 you borrowed.  Sucker!!!  

By the way, funny thing – did you know the US Government has borrowed $21Tn on your behalf and, at 2.1% average interest, they have to pay $441Bn a year in interest payments alone and Trump is already running a $1Tn annual deficit (when there is no war and no recession) and the only reason the rates are so low is because we borrow mostly short-term notes that we constantly roll over – which then makes us subject to immediately be affected by rate increases – THAT is why Trump is freaking out about the Fed raising rates.  Like the Fed, he doesn't give a crap about you – he just doesn't want his budget to blow up.

That's also why Trump purposely sabotaged the trade deal with China by kidnapping the daughter of the head of China's biggest tech company.  That would be like China arresting Tim Cook's daughter.  No matter what the charges – US citizens would be outraged and demand action.  Why do we think Chinese people will not?  They are human beings, just like us, not aliens from another planet.  They like the Avengers movies just like we do (but they hated "Crazy Rich Asians") so why do you think they aren't going to be pissed off just like we would be to see America arresting it's citizens on what they consider trumped-up charges?

Anyway, so Trump is sabotaging the Trade talks so he has an excuse to keep taxing you with his tariffs (the Chinese don't pay them – you do – sucker!) which are already dropping $67Bn into the Treasury Budget and will rise to $125Bn if China doesn't sign an agreement by March – which is highly unlikely.  So Trump will have another $125Bn he can use to give more tax cuts to himself, his family and his friends but that $125Bn is threatened by just a 0.5% rise in interest rates.  THAT is why Trump is so angry at Powell and why Trump is willing to stab President Xi in the back while they are sitting down for dinner.  It's not for you – it's for Trump!  

8:30 Update:  Non-Farm Payroll additions for November came in at an anemic 155,000 which was huge miss of the 200,000 jobs expected and October was revised down from 250,000 to 237,000 so 63,000 jobs disappeared in the last 30 days.  That's good news for low rates as the Fed doesn't need to raise rates if people are going on unemployment at a good clip – they can let Trump's terrible economy do the work of impoverishing the people for them!  

Also good news for the market that's bad for consumers – OPEC has agreed with Russia (OPEC+) to cut another 1.2Mb/d of production and that's sending oil back to $54 this morning, up $3,000 per contract from our call to go long at $51 yesterday.  In fact, if you follow me over at Seeking Alpha, I reiterated the long call at $50 at 3:08 pm in that Comment Section – so good for gains of $4,000 per contract for the people who were more patient than we were with our first entry!  

I have about 63,000 followers over at Seeking Alpha so – you're welcome!   

We'll be taking those quick gains off the table and relying on our short Ultra-Short Oil ETF (SCO) calls to do their work for us.  We originally sold the SCO Jan $20 calls on 11/14 for $4 and, as of yesterday's close they were $5.75 but we were confident that $50 would be a good floor so now we look for a bounce back over $20 so the short calls will expire worthless and we get to keep the $16,000 we sold 40 contracts for (they were part of a bullish spread we already cashed in as oil bottomed out).  

So I still like that short sale as a new play or you can sel the July $25 calls for $6 because if oil is under $50 in July, I will eat my hat!  That was going to be our fallback roll if oil didn't bounce but now it's bouncing so I'm very excited about this position as it's currently showing -$23,000 in our Short-Term Portfolio so, if they expire worthless, it will be a $23,000 gain in 42 days.  

We also have a bullish play on the Gasoline ETF (UGA), which was also taking lumps as we have the Jan $28 calls, now just 0.60 and I love those as a new trade – also for July – where we can pick up 20 of the July $23 calls for $4 and sell 20 of the July $30 calls for $1.25 for net $2.75 on the $7 spread so we'd lay out $5,500 for a potential $14,000 payout if UGA is over $30 in July.  That would make a gain of $8,500 (154%) and no margin would be required for the trade.

Going back to last October, Gasoline (/RB) had fallen to $1.49 but jumped up to $1.80 on the original OPEC cuts in November and /RB contracs pay $420 per penny per contract so that 0.30+ move was good for $12,600 per contract.  So of course I like /RB long as it crosses over $1.50 with tight stops below – again – as the reward outweighs the risk by a country mile!  

So lot's of fun things to trade but we won't be getting too excited until we see our bounce lines holding up and we're certainly not going to get all long into the weekend while we wait for the Chinese reaction to the Huawei kidnapping (and here's a nice background article on Huawei from 2011, where you can see that accusing them of selling spyware has always been a way the West has competed against what has become the World's 3rd largest hardware company anyway).

Have a great weekend, 

- Phil


Do you know someone who would benefit from this information? We can send your friend a strictly confidential, one-time email telling them about this information. Your privacy and your friend's privacy is your business... no spam! Click here and tell a friend!

Comments (reverse order)

    You must be logged in to make a comment.
    You can sign up for a membership or log in

    Sign up today for an exclusive discount along with our 30-day GUARANTEE — Love us or leave, with your money back! Click here to become a part of our growing community and learn how to stop gambling with your investments. We will teach you to BE THE HOUSE — Not the Gambler!

    Click here to see some testimonials from our members!

  1. This is the result of adding $1.5T to the debt:

    Nonfarm payrolls increased by 155,000 for the month while the unemployment rate again held at 3.7 percent, its lowest since 1969, according to a Labor Department report Friday. Economists surveyed by Dow Jones had been expecting payroll growth of 198,000 and the jobless rate to hold steady.

    But they will come back with more tax cuts eventually, because facts don't matter!

  2. Tariffs / Phil – It's quite amazing that most people don't understand that basically Trump has enacted one of the largest tax increase on the middle class in years. I suspect that the idiots who believe what he writes in his tweets are thinking that we are getting that money from China while they pay more at Wal-Mart.

  3. The stuff in the Manafort and Cohen sentencing documents must be pretty damning looking at the unhinged tweets from Trump this morning. The guy is completely insane…

  4. Good Morning.

  5. Good morning!  

    Big Chart – I can't even….

    NFP/StJ – Looks like we may have peaked:

    Kind of a downtrend if you add today's candle.  

    And it seems to me you lived your life

    Like a candle in the wind

    Never knowing who to cling to

    When the rain set in

    And I would have liked to have known you 

    But I was just a kid

    Your candle burned out long before

    Your legend ever did – Sir Elton

    Tweets/StJ – And he has all the launch codes…

    ROFL!! "Already 87 pages done, but obviously cannot complete until we see the final Witch Hunt Report." – but it doesn't stop them from writing an 87-page response to a report they haven't seen?  

    Can you imagine reading 87 pages of ramblings by Giuliani?  If Rudy actually wrote them, Trump is likely to get the gas chamber…  cheeky

    Trump says he doesn't know Jerome Corsi yet he has a joint defense agreement with him???

    And look, we'll soon be celebrating Trump's 40,000th tweet!  

    Let's say 30 seconds a tweet, that's 20,000 minutes, 333 hours spent just tweeting (14 days) and figure he has to read some too so probably a couple of solid months (24/7) of tweeting during a two-year Presidency…

    Related image

  6. Tweeting / Phil – Still not as much as golfing…

  7. Good morning.

    I am curious of everyone's opinion about Seaspan (SSW). They are one of the global leaders in container shipping owning 100+ vessels chartered by the key liners (such as Maersk, MSC, COSCO etc). I have been following them for some time and start liking what I see. The P/E is now 6.9 with revenue streams protected by long-term contracts. They used to pay high dividend but are now down to 0.5 USD/year, so about 5.2% yield on current $9.6/share price. New policy is not progressive as they state to be focusing on growth and repayment of debt (multiple vessels are now completely unencumbered). They recently added a major institutional investor, Canada's Fairfax insurance/investment company as a mix of $500m debt + $500m new equity leading to some dilution as shares being where they are. Revenue, cashflow and earnings have all been on a positive trend recently. The sector overall if of course quite vulnerable to macro and trade issues but I am considering a position.

    Options are quite limited (until May '19 only) but overall thoughts as well as any ideas as to how best structure a play would be very welcome.

    Good summary from their Nov '18 Investor Day:

  8. Batman – The most impressive action taken by AVGO is that they more than doubled their quarterly dividend.  How many companies do you know that have done that ?

    In fact their dividend has gone from .40 per quarter in 2015 to 2.65 going forward.  Very impressive.!

    Phil, as I recall, you were a fan of AVGO some time ago.

  9. Phil/aapl

    First, thanks for the time you spent on your analysis this morning (yesterday’s post)!!

    Up from $150 vs down from $180….you said if it holds $172 vs $171…..Are we really going to be able to tell, which level is held? The two numbers are so close, yet you base your analysis on that. It makes a difference in the larger picture, which levels the stock is basing from, either on the upside or the downside.

    However, $171/172 are not far enough apart to tell…

    Any other way to determine that? 

    Thanks….and I have no idea how you do the work you do in 24 hours…If I figured that out, I could be a billionaire.

  10. Shorted amzn on the pop this morning at the $1740 level for coffee and donuts money

  11. Aapl

    So, yesterday, it was in a range from $170.40 to $174.80…down today to $171.23 today…

    I am guessing it takes a few days of movement to determine the range

    For learning, I am willing to remind the board next week and if Phil can tell us the answer to the $171 vs $172, it’s possible it may help me make some money for ‘cigs and booze’ (figure of speech)

  12. Not green for long! Maybe the market is slowly absorbing the negative picture being painted around the world.

  13. Phil – would you buy back the Jan UGA short calls at this point or do you think we'll see more downside? TIA

  14. Nice zig-zagging already.  This is why we watch and wait until we see some real traction.

    /RB up $800 already.

    By the way, I'm off to LA this weekend to spend a week doing stuff with New Age.  We're having dinner with the Mayor on Tues and strategizing World Domination Weds and Thurs but I'll be working more or less regularly as I've scheduled most stuff after 1pm their time.

    SSW/Alter – Seem like a nice, solid company but rising interest and trade wars might keep them cheap for a while so you have to be willing to ride them out for the long run.  Keep in mind they are the same company they were in March at $5.50 – just the sentiment shifted.  

    Options are super-thin but, at $9.62, you can sell the May $10 calls for $1.45 to give yourself a net $8.55 entry so save $1 for good or ill.  As a true test, I'd just sell about 1/3 of what you hope to ultimately own and see if that works out so, for example, if you are willing to go $100,000 (1,000 shares) then maybe sell 40 puts for $5,800 and see how it goes.  If they do pop over $10, THEN you can buy some $7.50 ($2.40)/$10 ($1) (estimated) bull call spreads for $1.40 so 40 of those would raise your net entry price to $10 when the stock is over $10 but then, over $10, you get $10,000 profit.  If not, the worst case becomes 4,000 shares at $10.  

    So the upside blow-out would pay you $5,800 in 6 months (5.8%) without using any of your allocation block and the downside blow-out gives you 4,000 shares for $34,200 and a slow move up gives you $10,000 profit and, of course, you can roll and adjust along the way.  

    AVGO/Albo – I loved them when they were BRCM and they were cheap.  Too much for me now but I still like them.  Our last trade on them was long Jan 2018 $40/50 bull call spreads with short $45 puts.  

    AAPL/Maya – Well it's $171 vs $172.50 and yes, I can tell, can't you?

    And no, that's not the whole basis – just the today premise for going long on the Jan $190 calls, which are now $140 but the market is weak and $171 isn't holding (but looks like it will) so it's a no-play officially at the moment though well worth a toss if you want to have fun.

    I doubt I'll be a Billionaire, I decided $100M is enough to insure 3 generations of wealth and, hopefully, one of my descendants is smart enough to extend it out to the next 3.  I doubt I have the ambition to push harder than that since, at 55, I'm becoming aware that there's only so much time to enjoy it…

    UGA/Soma – Good idea, in the STP, let's buy back the 40 short Jan $31 calls at 0.20 – just in case it really pops up.  We sold them for 0.80 and UGA is at $26.53 but that's up $1.42 in a day and it has been much higher.

    Menace/StJ – That's another reason they are trying very hard to keep rates down.

  15. Good luck with the New Age meeting, Phil! Sounds promising, always excited to hear about any developments there. 

    Meanwhile I hope everyone is making a few ticks here and there. Market's really been moving. Sold bear call spreads on TSLA this AM (couldn't take it any longer!) but I guess I could've shorted ANYTHING.

  16. /RB / Phil – Looking at /RB spreads, it's a little crazy (not a smooth curve).  Would this drive us to think differently about which expiration we trade if we want to long play it from $1.50 back to $1.80?

    Jan – $1.5000

    Feb – $1.5000

    Mar – $1.5150

    Apr – $1.7100

    May – $1.7200

  17. Phil/aapl

    Got it. Thanks for the clarification

  18. New Age/Ati – Talk about exciting:

    Cannabis stock Cronos soars 24% as Altria takes major stake

    Year End 31st Dec 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 TTM 2018E 2019E CAGR / Avg
    Revenue C$m 0.000 0.000 0.000 0.000 0.55 4.08 11.7 23.1 108.9  
    Operating Profit C$m -0.031 -0.021 -4.15 -3.78 -1.76 2.79 -3.94      
    Net Profit C$m -0.031 -0.021 -4.82 0.22 -1.19 2.49 -5.47 -7.99 21.3  
    EPS Reported C$ -0.081 -0.056 -0.15 0.005 -0.015 0.010 -0.039      
    EPS Normalised C$ -0.081 -0.056 -0.10 0.039 -0.039 -0.033 -0.097 -0.030 0.10  
    EPS Growth %                    
    PE Ratio x           n/a n/a n/a 139.5  
    PEG x           n/a n/a n/a 1.02

    New Age is going to do more than $23M next year and, if all goes well, more than $100M in 2020 and we're not losing money!  In fact, we should make $3-4M next year at least…

    Still, if PM offers us $1.8Bn – I think I'm ready to move on to the next big thing.

    /RB/Buckeye – I'm not saying buy and hold – I already got out earlier and now back in at $1.50 with tight stops but, goal-wise, I think it's possible to head back to $1.80 though $1.75 would thrill me.  If you can get March for $1.515, then that's worth getting rather than dealing with rolling friction on contracts you hold longer-term but I generally start with 2x and then sell 1/2 on a move up so I have 1x with a low basis.  

    You're welcome Maya.  

  19. Oh, and we're making AMERICAN DOLLARS – not that Canadian silly stuff!

  20. tsla….unreal

  21. LB…dangit!!!!

  22. Phil-I have Cron only I've hedged and I'm getting killed on the shorts. That was one of my picks on a hunch. Anyways am thinking of buying back and rolling out. Option 11.5 strike. Your right on with your AM post.. I tried explaining these concepts to people for years only you did leave out that you do get the tax break on the interest and taxes you pay which lowers your tax basis. Seems everything is always rigged! Thanks-every person in this country should understand the bankster's if they read!! I'm beginning to doubt that too.

  23. Phil – do you want to get on a call?

  24. crypto losing 10% a day is totally awesome. We are going to low-ball this thing. Solarcoin at 2.5 cents!

  25. Good afternoon!  Got bored with my day job, so back to more active learning and trading!  I was going to lurk here  for awhile, but thought it would be better to become more of a participant.   Nice to see some of the familiar names from the past.  Hello to Phil and all.  Good luck and great trading to everyone!  

  26. welcome back iflantheman!  

  27. That's awesome Phil. Go New Age (and PSWI) go! Currently invested with you guys a little bit and hopefully moreso in the future.

    And wow – I had a much easier time covering /NQs here at 6660 yesterday than today. Thinking I'll just let a couple ride at this point. 

  28. Lflantheman!

    How awesome to have you back!

    Trading wise, I feel much better than I did when you were here before! Was that in 2013 or thereabouts?

    I have been here since 2010…still learning! Haha!

    Thanks to Phil, I am a much better investor and trader compared to in 2012…I remember a time when I was down a lot on  ? short call in 2012 when the stock went from 450 to 700… and your comment was…’the train has left on that trade’… I lost some sleep on that but today, that kind of stuff is the past! (Hopefully)

    Good to have you back…..stop lurking and start posting please

  29. Oh and our newest PSW Investments Project is………………. a Travel Agency!   More details to follow but we're going to invest and build up a luxury travel brand specializing in events so anyone with industry knowledge or good ideas – please let us know.

    Something like this:

    Also, we'll be doing things like rock and roll cruises:

    The math is staggering and we have plenty of contacts – a tour like this can sell 1,000+ rooms on a ship and this one seems to have sold out 3,500 rooms for $2,000 each so $7M to play with and usually it's a 30% discount from the ship so $2.1M less what we pay the bands but everything else, including facilities – comes with the ship.

    So any ideas you have for groups you work with that want to do travel events (or local hotel/arena events – let us know and we can make it happen or, if you want to do 5-star hotel trips with private jets and limos – we can do that too (including event tickets along the way).

    Because, you know, I had 10 minutes I wasn't using during the week…  crying

    CRON/Pirate – Well it's not that much of a blow out.  If you can specify what you have, I can see if there's a good fix.  And you no longer get as much tax deductions thanks to Trump!  Also, I never get that logic that "sure it costs you money but you save 1/3 of it in taxes" – kind of silly as I'd rather save 3/3 than save 1/3 while spending 2/3. 

    Call/BDC – Sure, call me.

    Welcome back Iflan!  

    Getting a little bouncy finally.  

  30. I agree Phil BUT most people can't come up with the hundreds of thousands to millions in cash it cost to pay for homes so… you have to have some "carrot" for people to buy houses and get mortgages!!

  31. Oh I did roll out the CRON. I've been with you since your babies were born. Hopefully I've managed to glean some of your genius!! But that might be doubtful too!!

  32. Hey iflan – good to see you back! 

  33. Iflan Great to see you back on board again

  34. Hi Phil,  I'm currently holding 50 June 2020 $190/240 Calls on Apple, and short 20 2021 $195 puts (ouch).  Thankfully I covered this with 30 June $200 calls (at $30, now $5).  I'm wondering when I should adjust my position.  I made about $75k on my short covers so far.  I could use this money to roll my June 2020 190/240 spread to a 2021 $170/240 spread for about $40k, which buys $100k in position, and 7 more months to be right.  Or would you recommend waiting to see if $170 holds before I adjust?

  35. To put things in perspective – better to look at monthly charts:

    Over the last 20 years, the S&P has closed below the 20 MA 4 times. 2 of these times ended up pretty badly! We are really on the edge now.

    BTW, buying when the S&P crosses over the 20 MA has worked pretty well.

  36. Phil – I'm holding 20 naked short puts on GE ($15 Jan 21). Needless to say, there's a bit of a loss here. Any suggestions on how to salvage this? Thx

  37. So these bullish announcements seem to have a one-day effect.  How many times can the dip buyers be burned before they give up?

    AAPL/Palotay – Well, if you close the $200s that's a $45,000 profit and you have Jun 2020 $190s at $17 ($85,000) and you can roll those to the 2021 $160 ($35)/210 ($16) bull call spreads at $19 ($95,000) and you still have $35,000 in your pocket.  Then I'd take 1/2 of the 50 short June 2020 $240 calls at $5.60 ($14,000) and roll them to March $180 calls at $7.30 ($18,250) and keep a stop on the 10 June $240s at $7 ($7,000) and 15 at $8.50 ($12,750) so worst case you're half-covered on the way up in your $250,000 spread.  As time goes on, you can always splurge $5 ($25,000) to roll the long calls down $10 if you have had some luck but, overall, you've vastly improved your chance of finishing in the money.  

    GE/Soma – The $15 puts are about $8 now and the $10 puts are $3.75 so, if you collected around $3 for the $15s, you can just roll down to 20 of the $10s and take an 0.75 loss but your breakeven is anything over $10.75 or you can sell a few extra $10s to cover the 0.75 too.  Sadly, there seems to be no bottom to this stock:

  38. FYI, they are expecting a pretty violent weekend in France where protest is quickly degenerating into a full blown revolution it seems! It looks to me that some in the far right and far left will use that to their advantage. 

    And fueled by Facebook new algos -

    Everything is relayed on Facebook, from memes mocking Macron and post-protest photos, to polls on the topics to bring up during TV interviews. Eric Drouet, one of the most active posters and admins, films daily Facebook Live videos on which he takes fellow yellow vests’ questions. On those groups, it is rare to see links from mainstream media outlets, regarded as “collaborators” working hand-in-hand with Macron.

    Instead, rumours and outright anti-Macron propaganda flourish on the platform, and are shared at an incredible pace. “The latest rumour is that Macron is going to sell France’s sovereignty to the UN at a conference next week”, says Vincent Glad, a journalist from Libération who is closely monitoring the gilets jaunes Facebook groups.

    Maybe one day we will realize that Facebook killed democracy! Helped by Putin and his trolls of course. Russian banks already help finance the far right party in France and other places.

    In any case, the European markets might be rocked by Monday.

  39. I dabbled in GE around 9 but completely out now, out of everything.I have a few CRON and AAPL leaps but nothing else long.

  40. TSLA   My current momentum play.  The 5 day and 1 month chart show it holding up remarkably well c/w the markets in general.  Today upgraded by Jefferies to buy, with $450 target.  Long TSLA. 

  41. Ugly, ugly.  Not a good week.

    Even /RB failing now.  

    No particular news taking us lower this afternoon – just all the positive BS fading away.

    • Markets go up, and markets go down. For U.S. stock markets, it's now down's turn, as U.S.-China trade tensions persist.
    • Nasdaq -2.3%, S&P 500 -1.8%, Dow -1.8%.
    • Amazon (AMZN -2.3%), Apple (AAPL -2.4%), Alphabet (GOOG -2.4%), and Microsoft (MSFT-2.8%) all off by more than 2%.
    • By sector, consumer services -2.1%, healthcare -2.1%, and tech -1.9%.
    • The basic materials sector--which includes oil & gas companies-- is up 0.1%; utilities +0.5%.
    • Previously: Tech lunch: Huawei woes weigh down Wall Street (Dec. 7)
    • The total count of drilling rigs currently active in the U.S. edges lower by 1 to 1,075, according to the latest weekly survey from Baker Hughes.
    • U.S. oil rigs tumbled by 10 to 877 but gas rigs jumped by 9 to 198.
    • U.S. crude oil maintains strong gains, currently +4.5% to $53.84/bbl.
    • Global political turmoil is likely to limit mega mergers and acquisitions in 2019, JPMorgan Chase's global co-head for M&A tells Bloomberg.
    • This year has been one of the best for M&A since 2007, but concerns about U.S.-China trade, Brexit, and increasing nationalism are likely to slow down the pace for deals over $10B, says JPMorgan's Hernan Cristerna.
    • “What CEOs and companies are cautious of is engaging in a very large transaction that might take a very long time to get approved, if it’s approved at all,” he said.
    • Still, he sees a "significant flow" in the $1B-$5B range next year. He expects that to come from companies that want to reinvent themselves or disrupt industries.
    • Previously: Takeda shareholders OK £46B takeout of Shire (Dec. 4)
    • Federal Reserve Governor Lael Brainard appears to signal support for an interest rate hike this month, but warns that new complications can cloud the outlook for next year, the Wall Street Journal reports.
    • "The most likely path for the economy is positive, although tailwinds that have provided a boost are fading, and we may face some crosscurrents," Brainard said at the Peterson Institute for International Economics.
    • Like many other Fed officials, she emphasizes that the Fed will have to carefully weigh economic data to decide to determine how to proceed.
    • The central bank's steady, gradual rate hikes have worked well in the near term, "although the policy path increasingly will depend on how the outlook evolves,” she said.
    • Previously: Atlanta Fed's Bostic: Rates are `within shouting range of neutral' (Dec. 6)
    • Apparel and footwear stocks are trading weak once again, presumably on renewed tariff jitters from investors and some blowback from Lululemon's (LULU -9.7%) disappointing holiday quarter guidance.
    • Notable decliners include VF Corp (NYSE:VFC-5.3%, Michael Kors (NYSE:KORS-5.1%, Fossilk (NASDAQ:FOSL-5.0%, Tapestry (NYSE:TPR-4.7%, Deckers Outdoor (NASDAQ:DECK-4.2%, Oxford Industries (NYSE:OXM-4.0%, PVH(NYSE:PVH-3.9%, Vince (NYSE:VNCE-3.7%, Vera Bradley (NASDAQ:VRA-3.6%, Gildan ACtivewear (NYSE:GIL-2.9%, Columbia SPortswear (NASDAQ:COLM-2.7%, Hanesbrands (NYSE:HBI-2.6% and Nike (NYSE:NKE-2.5%.
    • Previously: Lululemon falls 6% despite earnings topper (Dec. 6)


    • Online retail sales for the period from November 1 to December 6 was up 18.6% Y/Y to $80.3B, according to tracking by Adobe Analytics.
    • Sales from smartphones were up 55% to $23.7B during the period.
    • The number of shoppers who bought items online to be picked up in store was up 46% from a year ago.
    • The firm forecasts total online retail sales for November and December to top $124B.

  42. Phil – do you happen to know if I am holding a long stock position and a short call position against the stock, and expiration is on ex-div day, if called away would I still be on record as holding the stock for dividend payout?  No one at TDA can answer that question.

  43. Phil/SQQQ

    I have 6 June 19, strike 12 calls at $4.50. There are around $4.60 now, Any advise of changing this to a BCS to prevent loss if markets go up from here. These were below 3 last week.

    how about the same date strike 15 calls at 3.40?


  44. TSLA is red!!! Miraculous!

  45. lfantheman – yes, so good to have you back. Look forward to your ideas on AAPL and others. 

  46. tangled – if you are called away you are on the hook to pay the dividend. It's happpened to me enough times to know its real. Not the end of the world. Sell something to pay for the dividend.

  47. Volume not that impressive! Although 90% of the volume now is just 5 bots anyway so if someone trips over the power cord, volume is down for the day.

  48. SPY with decent support at 260 over the past year.  I don't see this misery extending into next week, so bought a few TZA puts for what I expect to be a bounce.   

  49. This is POTUS talking for crying out loud! Wake me up when this nightmare is over!

  50. Ex-dividend/Tangled – It's whether or not you are a holder of record on the day the dividend is paid but I think you have to assume that's through the end of that trading day.   I don't know if it's a rule or not though.

    SQQQ/Pat – Well, you could roll them up but, if you want to take $1.10 off the table, why not just sell a call?  The June $17s are $3 so you drop your risk to $1.60 and you still have a $5 spread that's $3.40 in the money.  Naked calls are just a way for you to be the sucker buying the premium – they make lousy hedges.  

    TSLA/Jabob – Wow, dropped $20 from the day's high.

    Trump/StJ – Why?  Why does he feel the need to bash Rex Tillerson all of a sudden?  What a lunatic!

    Have a great weekend,

    - Phil

  51. Tillerson did an interview with Bob Schieffer in Houston benefitting MD Anderson

  52. A tweet from Donald Trump. reading: "Whether I choose him or not for "State"- Rex Tillerson, the Chairman & CEO of ExxonMobil, is a world class player and dealmaker. Stay tuned!"

  53. The 13 biggest announcements from The Game Awards 2018

  54. The Last Gasp

  55. Rex Tillerson just exposed Donald Trump’s greatest weakness

  56. Police and ‘Yellow Vests’ Clash in New Paris Protests

  57. Juul tries to make friends in Washington as regulators circle

  58. Oregon Hemp Farmers Will Benefit From 2018 Farm Bill

  59. Japan OKs divisive bill allowing more foreign workers

  60. The Wooing of Jared Kushner: How the Saudis Got a Friend in the White House

  61. China launches pioneering mission to far side of moon

  62. China Steps on the Gas in Bid to Avoid Another Freezing Winter

  63. biochris/crypto — do you have any opinion/insights into Factom?  Their price has been heading a different direction from the rest.

  64. Beyond GDP

  65. Ayers won’t be Trump’s chief of staff

  66. Surviving a Criminal Presidency

  67. Yikes, my plans have been undone by a lack of AA batteries in my mouse! I keep AAA in my bag but didn’t know the mouse was AA….