Archive for 2018

Movement In “Tokyo Whale” Wallet Hints At More Crypto Chaos Ahead

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

If recent history is any guide, crypto traders should be bracing for some serious volatility in the price of bitcoin and bitcoin cash during the coming days and weeks.

And no, it won’t be David Tepper’s “tepid” (no pun intended) assessment of crypto’s value. Rather, as The Next Web’s crypto vertical pointed out, the Mt. Gox bankruptcy trustee (who has in the past denied that his trades had ANY impact on the price of bitcoin even though his trades almost exactly correspond to some of the largest dips in recent months), has moved 16,000 bitcoin and 16,000 bitcoin cash to two separate wallets – a decision that TNW says is a sign of another impending dump.

The 16,000 BTC have been transferred to the address below…


…While 16,000 BCH have been sent to this address:


For what it’s worth, TNW wasn’t able to confirm that the accounts are attached to an exchange – something that would firm up its thesis that more sales are imminent. However, it did point out that this is the first time that Mt. Gox trustee Nobuaki Kobayashi has moved any coins from the Mt. Gox wallet since February…


…Of course, crypto bulls will likely wince when they recall how THAT turned out.

In a report released back in March,  the so-called Tokyo Whale (no, not that Tokyo Whale) revealed that he had sold roughly $400 million worth of bitcoin and bitcoin cash beginning late last year and ending in February. But despite the unprecedented crash that bitcoin experienced during the first quarter, Kobayashi insisted in the report that his selling had nothing to do with the negative price activity.

But describing that claim as “specious” would be almost too charitable. Instead, by offering this explanation, Kobayashi, pictured below, is probably engaging in some badly needed CYA – given that he’s obligated to sell the coins at the best price possible to help reimburse Mt. Gox customers who lost everything when the exchange collapsed back in February 2014.

Those same customers should at least have some hope that they might soon be made whole (or at least partly whole) after years of waiting. Now that Kobayashi has finally realized some cash gains, the trustee has recently recently started…
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Dysfunctional CalPERS Board Distracted By Petty Squabbling As Fund Lurches Toward Bankruptcy

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

California's perennially underfunded pension system is struggling with an internecine conflict among its governing board members that some observers worry could impact the fund's performance as it goes all-in on "creative" scam financials and projections that have pushed the fund further into the bubbly equities.

And what's worse, the dispute is escalating just as CalPERS is heading into its busy season: Seemingly never-ending stream of annual shareholder meetings where CalPERS makes always unwelcome activist recommendations to the companies in which it owns shares.


The conflict started when newly elected CalPERS administrative board member Margaret Brown, a SoCal school district administrator who unseated an incumbent CalPERS advisory board member during last fall's election, leaked a video to the press purporting to show that she had been locked out of her office. In the footage, she suggests that the lock-out was the work of board chairwoman Priya Mathur, who has clashed with Brown on a number of issues including allegations that she leaked sensitive information to the press. Mathur insists the lockout wasn't intentional, and was instead a glitch in the board's security system.

But that excuse did little to quiet hostilities. Brown has since leaked a story to a friendly financial blog about her conflict with Mathur, which has only further inflamed the situation.

Here's more from the Sacramento Bee.

CalPERS Board of Administration member Margaret Brown recorded herself failing to open the door, shared the video with a friendly financial blog and allowed it be posted to YouTube under a headline calling the incident an "illegal lockout." "I have a badge and I’m trying to get in my office, and, yeah, it doesn’t work. Very, very nice," she says in the video.

Her assumption that she was being "locked out" and her decision to share the video on social media are signs of escalating tension on the board that handles $350 billion in assets for 1.9 million California public employees and retirees.

Brown declined an interview request from The Sacramento Bee. She wrote in an email, "I was elected as an outsider and defeated an incumbent who had the endorsement of nearly every then-member of

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Bill Smead: “Two Things Collided In 1987 And The Market Fell 40% In 78 Days”

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Submitted by Finanz und Wirtschaft

Bargain hunters have a hard time in today’s financial markets. That’s especially true in the United States where equity valuations – even after the recent correction – remain at elevated levels and the enormous popularity of stocks like Amazon and Netflix has caused the market to narrow significantly. "Right now, we have the highest concentration of technology in the S&P 500 since the end of 1999", observes Bill Smead. The renowned value investor from Seattle warns that this will end ugly and lead to a 1987 like market crash.

Nonetheless, the founder of Smead Capital Management sees no reason to panic for astute investors. He argues that the American economy is on solid ground and will accelerate in the coming years when the millennials are going to fuel consumption. As a field-tested contrarian, he spots buying opportunities in sectors like old media, retail and biotech.

Q. Mr. Smead, the stock market has lost steam. Four months into 2018, the S&P 500 is basically trading at the same level as at the beginning of the year. How concerning is this slump?

Historically, the S&P 500 spends about 80% of its time doing a pretty good job of representing the overall market. But 20% of its time it represents over popularity of just a few sectors. That’s because investors often act like a herd of sheep which are notorious creatures of habit. They will go to a pasture and it starts out being green pasture. But then they will graze until there is nothing green left and they will start digging in into the roots and stuff until it’s unhealthy.

Q. And what’s the analogy regarding the stock market?

Investors act like sheep by continuing to walk through the same ruts to feed at the same trough. And that’s what happens to the S&P 500. It has no ability to transfer money away because it’s a capitalization weighted index. And right now, it is a glorified growth stock index. In the prior four years until early 2018, around 60% of the gain of the index came from seven of the 500 companies. That is unbelievably narrow. So the old rule is that narrow markets end badly.

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JPM: CTAs Were Reponsible For The Recent Treasury Selloff; What It Means For Treasury Yields

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

On Saturday morning we showed that  as the yield on the 10Y US Treasury note broke above the 3.00% Maginot Line this week (for the first time since Jan 2014), spec traders (hedge fund) piled on – pushing net speculative positioning for 10Y note futures to their largest short ever. In fact, along with almost $4 trillion notional in Eurodollar shorts (betting on rising short-term interest rates), the aggregate position across the rest of the Treasury futures space has also reached a new record short, which, as the chart below shows, is equivalent to well over 1.1 million 10Y futures contracts.

However, as we have repeatedly said in the past, spec positioning, as indicated weekly by the CFTC reports, is a lagging, not leading indicator, and thus has little informational value. Furthermore, while incremental, the additions to the net short position were hardly "marginal", which likely means that the accelerated unwind in the Treasury complex in the second half of April, had little to do with another short pile up, and more to do with the closing out of long positions.

But who was selling? According to one apocryphal theory, the marginal seller was none other than Beijing, perhaps in retaliation, and as a warning signal, for the recent escalations in the ongoing trade war between the US and China. It will be impossible to confirm or deny this theory until full TIC data for April is released in two months (and even the data is price/yield adjusted) although the recent plunge in Treasuries held in custody at the Fed – the biggest since the China deval days of January 2016 – suggests that China may indeed be liquidating at least a modest portion of its TSY holdings.

Another, more actionable theory was proposed on Friday by JPM's Nikolaos Panigirtzoglou, who writes in his weekly Flows and Liquidity report that CTAs have been partly responsible for the bond market sell-off since mid-April.

The reason, as JPM notes, is that unlike the rest of the investing world which has been solidly short the Treasury complex and merely adding more incremental shorts, CTA have undergoing a sharp reversal in position, a…
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UBS: “The Petroyuan Will Undermine America’s Dominant Role And Create A Sea Change In Global Markets”

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

From Hayden Briscoe, head of Fixed Income, Asia Pacific at UBS

RMB-denominated oil contracts began trading for the first time in Shanghai on March 26. We believe that in the long term this will ultimately change how oil is traded globally, create a Petroyuan currency flow, increase the role of the RMB as a global trading currency, and compel investors to up their allocations to Chinese financial assets.

Why now?

From March 26, seven oil grades will be tradeable on the Shanghai International Energy Exchange (INE), allowing Chinese buyers to buy forward in RMB. Since INE is based in Shanghai's Free Trade Zone (FTZ), foreign traders will be allowed to trade in the market.

China passed the US as the world's largest oil consumer in 2016. Accordingly, China wants to pay for its huge import bill in its own currency (RMB) rather than USD.

More importantly, however, China wants the new oil trading plan to promote RMB internationalization, i.e. forcing wider adoption of the RMB as a global trading currency, and switching to RMB payments for major imports is part of this process.

The emergence of Petroyuan – RMB-denominated revenues collected by the world's largest oil producers – is a natural development from this process

Will this new system change the way oil is traded globally?

Probably not in the short term. Traders can't move RMB freely in and out of the Shanghai commodity exchanges yet. That said, it's unclear how much of a roadblock this is given that INE will be based in the Shanghai FTZ.

Also, even with exchange convertibility, international investors and resource trading companies need to build up enough confidence in the INE as a trading hub. That requires time and, crucially, the tried, tested, and extensive  data infrastructure to support the market, which China doesn't have right now.

That said, in the longer term, we believe that RMB oil trading will shift the structure of the global oil market, provided two things happen.

Firstly, China will have to remove, or substantially reduce, capital controls for RMB-priced oil trading…
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Hedge Fund CIO: The Investing Story For The Next 7 Years Is Profit Destruction

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Following up on our earlier post on the latest musings by One River CIO Eric Peters, here is a bonus anecdote from his latest Weekend notes, looking at why the future may be exactly the opposite of what conventional wisdom believes.


“Where will we be in seven years?” asked Lithium, handsfree on Highway One, repeating my question.

We were talking about stocks, which investors assume return 7% per year on average, forever. That means they rise 60% every 7yrs, which would leave the S&P 500 at 4300 in 2025.

But GMO now forecasts that US large cap equities will return -2% per year in nominal terms each year for the next seven (-4.2% per year in real terms), leaving the S&P 500 at 2320, down 14% from today in 2025.

“The key consideration in answering that question is earnings destruction,” said Lithium, banking hard, the pacific sparkling to his left. “We’re in a massively disruptive period. Technology is bringing the consumer and producer closer.

You see it most clearly in retail – Amazon – but a version of this dynamic is happening throughout the economy.” The service sector sits between production and consumption, it’s roughly 80% of the US economy.

“Lots of old companies with legacy models are getting hollowed out by technology. Autos, payments, even energy.” Lithium switched to ludicrous mode, his Tesla leaping. “They’re dead men walking, they just don’t know it yet.” Blockchain, machine learning, artificial intelligence.

“If you could make $1bln but it destroyed $5bln in other people’s profits, would you?” asked Lithium. “If you believe in these new technologies, you must recognize they will destroy profits in all sorts of ways.”

Our job as investors is to figure out where. “Has Amazon made all the profits that they’ve destroyed in retail?

Will Uber make more profits than they destroy? Will Tesla? Google?” asked Lithium.

Right now, we’re at this classic late-cycle moment where everything appears to work. Both the disrupter and incumbent have gotten an equity boost — less profit per unit of equity market cap. That tells you what you need to know about stocks.”

* * *

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Foxconn Uses Loophole To Drain 7 Million Gallons Of Water Per Day From Lake Michigan

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Taiwanese tech manufacturer Foxconn will siphon seven million gallons of water per day from Lake Michigan after their upcoming Mount Pleasant, Wisconsin plant was granted approval by the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources.

The $10 billion, 20 million square foot facility expected to provide around 13,000 jobs will use around 61% of the siphoned water to manufacture LCD screens, while around 2.7 million gallons will be lost in the process each day, due primarily to evaporation. The remaining water will be treated and returned to the lake.

Racine County & Mount Pleasant leaders gather at Foxconn site where construction equipment has arrived. Initial site work to begin by wknd

— Ben Jordan (@BenJordan3) April 26, 2018

While that may sound like a lot of water, Wisconsin's DNR notes that the Foxconn plant will "only amount to a 0.07 percent increase in the total surface water withdrawals from Lake Michigan," however as Gizmodo notes, "For environmentalists in the region, the issue is not so much the diversion for the Foxconn factory itself but rather the precedent it will set for how the lake water can be used."

If we allow this to happen, it’s going to happen all over the basin, with other states and then it’s going to be the thirsty states and nations to come,” Jennifer Giegerich, the government affairs director for the Wisconsin League of Conservation Voters, warned during a public hearing about the diversion, according to the Wisconsin Gazette. -Gizmodo

Approximately 20% of the world's fresh water can be found in the Great Lakes, which has historically been used for public purposes such as water utilities and drinking water – and protected by the 2008 Great Lakes Compact agreement intended to preserve the resource. 

The agreement states “In general, there is a ban on new diversions of water from the Basin but limited exceptions could be allowed in communities near the Basin when rigorous standards are met.

Exceptions to the compact can be granted if permission is received from all eight governors of
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Gold And Silver: Sell In May And Go Away? Not Exactly

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Authored by John Rubino via,

It’s easy to dismiss seasonality in the price of a tradable asset. After all, if supply and demand fluctuate regularly you’d think the resulting arbitrage would attract enough traders to smooth out prices.

But that’s apparently not the case with gold and silver. Here’s an analysis from Casey Research on the subject with a couple of highly revealing charts.

Gold Is Seasonal: When Is The Best Month To Buy?

Many investors, especially those new to precious metals, don’t know that gold is seasonal. For a variety of reasons, notably including the wedding season in India, the price of gold fluctuates in fairly consistent ways over the course of the year.

This pattern is borne out by decades of data, and hence has obvious implications for gold investors.

Can you guess which is the best month for buying gold?

When I first entertained this question, I guessed June, thinking it would be a summer month when the price would be at its weakest. Finding I was wrong, I immediately guessed July. Wrong again, I was sure it would be August. Nope.

Cutting to the chase, here are gold’s average monthly gain and loss figures, based on almost 40 years of data:

Since 1975—the first year gold ownership in the US was made legal again—March has been, on average, the worst-performing month for gold.

This, of course, makes March the best month for buying gold.

Here’s what buying in March has meant to past investors. We measured how well gold performed by December in each period if you bought during the weak month of March.

What does this pattern means for us here at the end of April? Most likely a couple of boring months are in store, in which both upside potential and downside risk are modest. This in turn means that decisions (to stack, take profits, or add to mining share portfolios) can be considered instead of rushed, with good-until-canceled orders being allowed to sit until, in the summer doldrums, some bored trader…
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“Unusual Eruptions” At World’s Largest Active Geyser In Yellowstone Stoke “Supervolcano” Fears

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

One month after we reported that fears of an eruption at the Yellowstone supervolcano continue to grow following the first eruption of the world's largest active geyser for the first time since 2014, overnight Reuters reported of continued "unusual eruptions" at the same location after said giant geyser erupted no less three times in the past six weeks, including once this week.

The good news, according to geologists, is that while the pattern is "unusual" it is not indicative of a more destructive volcanic eruption brewing beneath Wyoming.

The bad news, is that with geological events in Yellowstone increasingly described by even the most "reputable" mainstream media and scholars as "unusual", the broader public is having trouble believing that everything is just normal.

This is what happened: Steamboat Geyser, which can shoot water as high as 300 feet (91 meters) into the air, erupted on March 15, April 19 and on Friday.

Steamboat Geyser

As the Bozeman Daily Chronicle adds, the Steamboat Geyser eruption on Friday was reported by a park visitor and was estimated to have begun at 6:30 am; that person was likely the only one who witnessed it firsthand, since boardwalks leading to area are closed due to high snowfall notes Gizmodo.

Why is this unusual? Because the last time it erupted three times in a year was in 2003, the U.S. Geological Survey’s Yellowstone Volcano Observatory said. Also notable: the last time it erupted prior to March was more than three years ago in September 2014.

While this year’s eruptions have (so far) been smaller than a usual Steamboat eruption, the two in April were about 10 times larger than an eruption at the park’s famed Old Faithful Geyser in terms on the amount of water discharged, geologists quoted by Reuters said.

Predictably, local scientists promptly emerged from their labs to ease the public's worries that a major Yellowstone eruption could be imminent: "There is nothing to indicate that any sort of volcanic eruption is imminent," Michael Poland, the scientist in charge for the…
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Mixed Setups; Something for Bulls and Bears

Courtesy of Declan.

Markets started the day strong – challenging resistance – but were unable to press this advantage.  Many indices closed lower, leaving ‘black candlesticks’ which are typically bearish when formed at ‘swing highs’ but still favor weakness even in the absence of the swing high setup.

The ‘black candlestick’ for the Nasdaq at resistance suggests a move towards the 200-day MA but for this to happen there needs to be an immediate downside; any recovery has a strong chance of negating the ‘black candlestick’.

The S&P did not finish so weak. There was no ‘black candlestick’ but instead a low key doji  may offer itself as upside

The Russell 2000 is hugging its respective 20-day and 50-day MAs without rocking the boat either way. It may be edging in favor of bulls because its holding these moving averages – a strong start for Monday would open up for a challenge of triangle resistance and potentially negate the bearish wedge ‘bull trap’.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average is holding to its mini-tweezer low which set up the return above the downward channel – it’s a decent long setup with the 200-day MA also available for support; risk measured off the tweezer bottom. 

The Nasdaq 100 is on the bearish side of the fence.  The ‘black candlestick’ tagged declining resistance with the 50-day MA as additional resistance.

The weakest index is the Semiconductors Index. The index is not close to declining resistance (which other indices have tested or are close to testing), it’s struggling in its bounce off its 200-day MA, plus it reversed off long-term support – now resistance. A loss of 1,220 could see a rapid acceleration in its losses – on top of what it has already lost off its highs.

For tomorrow, shorts can focus on the Nasdaq, Nasdaq 100 and Semiconductor Index. Longs can look to the Dow Jones, S&P and potentially the Russell 2000; although the latter index can go either way.

You’ve now read my opinion, next read Douglas’ blog.

I trade a small account on eToro, and invest using Ameritrade. If you would like to join me on eToro, register through the banner link and search for “fallond”.

If you are new to spread betting, here is a guide on position size based on eToro’s system.


Zero Hedge

Americans' Economic Hope Has Collapsed

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Which came first, the confidence or the stock market rally?

One thing is for sure, the crash in stocks in December has crushed the hope of Americans that their economic future is going to be better under President Trump.

Overall confidence dipped to 58.1 - a 4-month low, but, U.S. consumers this month were the most downbeat on the economy since November 2016, a third straight drop after expectations reached a 16-year high just three months earlier, as the partial government shutdown wears on toward a fourth week.


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Kimble Charting Solutions

Triple Breakout Test In Play For S&P 500!

Courtesy of Chris Kimble.

Is the rally of late about to run out of steam or is a major breakout about to take place in the S&P 500? What happens at current prices should go a long way in determining this question.

This chart looks at the equal weight S&P 500 ETF (RSP) on a daily basis over the past 15-months.

The rally from the lows on Christmas Eve has RSP testing the top of a newly formed falling channel while testing the underneath side of the 2018 trading range and its falling 50-day moving average at (1).

At this time RPS is facing a triple resistance test. Wil...

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Phil's Favorites

Brexit deal flops, Theresa May survives -- so what happens now?


Brexit deal flops, Theresa May survives -- so what happens now?

Courtesy of Victoria Honeyman, University of Leeds

As the clock ticks down to March 29 2019, all of the political manoeuvring, negotiating, arguing and fighting is coming to a peak. In the two and a half years since the 2016 EU referendum, views on both sides have hardened and agreement still seems as far away as it was the day after the referendum.

With Theresa May’s withdrawal agreement disliked by all sides, and voted down by an unprecedented majority in the House of Commons, everyone is wondering what can and should be done next?


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Digital Currencies

Crypto-Bubble: Will Bitcoin Bottom In February Or Has It Already?

Courtesy of Michelle Jones via

The new year has been relatively good for the price of bitcoin after a spectacular collapse of the cryptocurrency bubble in 2018. It’s up notably since the middle of December and traded around the psychological level of $4,000... so is this a sign that the crypto market is about to recover?

Of course, it depends on who you ask, but one analyst discovered a pattern which might point to a bottom next month.

A year after the cryptocurrency bubble popped


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D.E. Shaw Investment Calls For Leadership Change At EQT

By ActivistInsight. Originally published at ValueWalk.

Elliott Management has offered to acquire QEP Resources for approximately $2.1 billion, contending the oil and gas explorer’s turnaround efforts have done little to lift the company’s share price. The company responded and said that a thorough review of the proposition is imperative in order to properly act in the best interests of shareholders, “taking into account the company’s other alternatives and current market conditions.” The news came only a month after Travelport Worldwide agreed to sell itself to Siris Capital Group and Elliott’s private equity arm Evergreen Coast Capital for $4.4 billion in cash and two months after Athenahealth was bought by Veritas and Evergreen for $5.7 bi...

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Insider Scoop

UBS Says Disney's Streaming Ambition Gives It A 'New Hope'

Courtesy of Benzinga.

Related DIS Despite Some Risks, Analysts Still Expecting Double Digit Growth From Communications Services In Q4 ... more from Insider

Chart School

Weekly Market Recap Jan 13, 2019

Courtesy of Blain.

In last week’s recap we asked:  “Has the Fed solved all the market’s problems in 1 speech?”

Thus far the market says yes!  As Guns n Roses preached – all we need is a little “patience”.  Four up days followed by a nominal down day Friday had the market following it’s normal pattern the past nearly 30 years – jumping whenever the Federal Reserve hints (or essentially says outright) it is here for the markets.   And in case you missed it the prior Friday, Chairman Powell came back out Thursday to reiterate the news – so…so… so… patient!

Fed Chairman Jerome Powell reinforced that message Thursday during a discussion at the Economic Club of Washington where he said that the central bank will be “fle...

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Members' Corner

Why Trump Can't Learn


Bill Eddy (lawyer, therapist, author) predicted Trump's chaotic presidency based on his high-conflict personality, which was evident years ago. This post, written in 2017, references a prescient article Bill wrote before Trump even became president, 5 Reasons Trump Can’t Learn. ~ Ilene 

Why Trump Can’t Learn

Donald Trump by Gage Skidmore (...

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Opening Pandora's Box: Gene editing and its consequences

Reminder: We are available to chat with Members, comments are found below each post.


Opening Pandora's Box: Gene editing and its consequences

Bacteriophage viruses infecting bacterial cells , Bacterial viruses. from

Courtesy of John Bergeron, McGill University

Today, the scientific community is aghast at the prospect of gene editing to create “designer” humans. Gene editing may be of greater consequence than climate change, or even the consequences of unleashing the energy of the atom.


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Mapping The Market

Trump: "I Won't Be Here" When It Blows Up

By Jean-Luc

Maybe we should simply try him for treason right now:

Trump on Coming Debt Crisis: ‘I Won’t Be Here’ When It Blows Up

The president thinks the balancing of the nation’s books is going to, ultimately, be a future president’s problem.

By Asawin Suebsaeng and Lachlan Markay, Daily Beast

The friction came to a head in early 2017 when senior officials offered Trump charts and graphics laying out the numbers and showing a “hockey stick” spike in the nationa...

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Swing trading portfolio - week of September 11th, 2017

Reminder: OpTrader is available to chat with Members, comments are found below each post.


This post is for all our live virtual trade ideas and daily comments. Please click on "comments" below to follow our live discussion. All of our current  trades are listed in the spreadsheet below, with entry price (1/2 in and All in), and exit prices (1/3 out, 2/3 out, and All out).

We also indicate our stop, which is most of the time the "5 day moving average". All trades, unless indicated, are front-month ATM options. 

Please feel free to participate in the discussion and ask any questions you might have about this virtual portfolio, by clicking on the "comments" link right below.

To learn more about the swing trading virtual portfolio (strategy, performance, FAQ, etc.), please click here ...

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Free eBook - "My Top Strategies for 2017"



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

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

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

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

Some other great content in this free eBook includes:


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


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About Phil:

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

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About Ilene:

Ilene is editor and affiliate program coordinator for PSW. She manages the site market shadows, archives, more. Contact Ilene to learn about our affiliate and content sharing programs.

Market Shadows >>