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G20 Thursday – World Leaders Gather as Storm Clouds Form Over Global Economy

Trump is on the other side of the World.  

Unfortunately, that doesn't stop him from tweeting and the President was active last night, sending this very scary video out to his followers while calling the Democratic Debates "BORING!" (they were, but it's not polite) and calling NBC and MSNBC "FAKE NEWS Orgainzations", which undermines the basic principles on which our democracy was founded.  All in a day's work for the President...

On his way to meet with the other World leaders, Trump insulted all of our allies saying that, if the United States were attacked, Japan would only “watch it on a Sony television.” He called Germany a security freeloader and chastised India for raising tariffs on American goods.

Trump has meetings scheduled with each of those leaders tomorrow so we're off to a great start already.  The President has already spoken favorably about Vladimir Putin and told reporters that what they discussed in their meeting would be "none of your business" and Saturday Morning, Trump is scheduled to meet with Mohammed Bin Salman, who had Jamal Khashoggi murdered and dismembered – Trump had nothing bad to say about him either.

As noted in the New York Times, Trump also continues to repeat his lies about NATO – our primary military alliance:

After assailing the treaty with Japan, Mr. Trump went on to repeat what has become a perennial attack on Ms. Merkel’s Germany. “We pay for close to 100 percent of NATO,” he said. “People don’t know that. We pay for close to that because Germany doesn’t pay what they’re supposed to pay, and out of the 28 countries, seven are paid up.”

As he has consistently done since taking office, Mr. Trump mischaracterized how NATO works and gave a false number about America’s share of the financial burden. NATO has a budget to cover common civilian and military costs, and the United States pays 22 percent of that, according to a formula based on national income. None of the NATO allies are in arrears on their contributions.

Image result for trump nato cartoonDeconstructing the NATO alliance from within isn't just unpatriotic – it's destabilizing the entire Global Balance of Power that has given us, for the first time in human history, 75 years of relative peace.  It's not the kind of thing you want to just toss out on a whim, is it?

Obviously, once again, these are the actions a Russain Agent would take if he wanted to undermine the Free World and NOT the actions you would usually associate with a President of the United States.  Trump has also renewed his threat to add $300Bn of additional tariffs on Chinese goods if Xi Jinping doesn't make him happy so there is a possibility that we have a complete breakdown wiht China at this meeting.

Hence, we will be adding to our hedges into the weekend as there are too many things that can go wrong and not that many things that can go right because – even if Trump and Xi can aggree on trade – there are still months to go before finalizing an actual deal and the Fed is unliklely to lower rates in the July meeting and OPEC is likely to raise the price of oil at their meeting – hard to see any positives that are more likely than those negatives…

As noted in yesterday's Live Trading Webinar, we have done very well on our longs this month so we want to spend some of that money to lock in the gains where we can.

In our Options Opportunity Portfolio (OOP), we have several hedges and the adjustments will be:

1 Bull Call Debit Spread
SQQQ Long Call 2020 17-JAN 35.00 CALL [SQQQ @ $35.54 $-0.57] 50 5/30/2019 (205) $56,500 $11.30 $-5.00 $11.30     $6.30 $-0.20 $-25,000 -44.2% $31,500
SQQQ Short Call 2020 17-JAN 50.00 CALL [SQQQ @ $35.54 $-0.57] -50 5/31/2019 (205) $-36,000 $7.20 $-3.80     $3.40 $0.10 $19,000 52.8% $-17,000
1 Bear Put Debit Spread
TLT Long Put 2020 17-JAN 132.00 PUT [TLT @ $132.12 $-0.70] 10 5/31/2019 (205) $5,000 $5.00 $-0.83 $5.00     $4.18 - $-825 -16.5% $4,175
TLT Short Put 2020 17-JAN 127.00 PUT [TLT @ $132.12 $-0.70] -10 5/30/2019 (205) $-3,000 $3.00 $-1.03     $1.97 $0.14 $1,030 34.3% $-1,970
  • For SQQQ we are going to buy back the short Jan $50 calls for $3.40 ($17,000) and roll the Jan $35 calls at $6.30 ($31,500) to the Jan $30 calls at $8.20 ($41,000) and we'll sell 20 (of 50) of the 2021 $45 calls for $8.20 ($16,400) to offset the cost.  
  • For TLT, we'll take the opportunity to buy back the 10 short Jan $127 puts at $2 ($2,000) and we will roll our 10 Jan $132 puts at $4.20 ($4,200) to 10 of the Jan $135 puts at $6 ($6,000), so we are spending $1,800 to go $3,000 in the money – seems like a fair trade! 
DXD Long Call 2019 19-JUL 30.00 CALL [DXD @ $26.62 $-0.08] 25 5/31/2019 (23) $4,625 $1.85 $-1.73 $1.20     $0.13 - $-4,313 -93.2% $313
DXD Long Call 2020 17-JAN 29.00 CALL [DXD @ $26.62 $-0.08] 50 6/6/2019 (205) $14,500 $2.90 $-1.15     $1.75 - $-5,750 -39.7% $8,750
DXD Short Call 2020 17-JAN 33.00 CALL [DXD @ $26.62 $-0.08] -50 6/6/2019 (205) $-9,500 $1.90 $-0.78     $1.13 - $3,875 40.8% $-5,625
  • For DXD, we can roll the 50 Jan $29 calls at $1.75 to 50 of the Jan $25 calls at $3.10 for net $1.35 ($6,750) and we can buy back the 50 short Jan $33 calls for $1.10 ($5,500) and sell 25 (1/2) the Oct $30 calls for $1 ($2,500).  

Overall, we spent $6,650 and added $25,000 more protection to the SQQQ spread, $3,000 more protection on the TLT spread and $20,000 more protection on the DXD spread so $48,000 better protected over the weekend for $6,650 will make me sleep a whole lot better!

In our Short-Term Portfolio (STP), it's easier to just put up the whole thing and we'll work with that, even though we just did a review on 6/12.  The STP is where we keep the hedges for our much larger ($1.4M) Long-Term Portfolio (LTP) and, if it wasn't for these hedges, we would have cashed out the LTP long ago:

  • Short puts – These are offsets we use to help pay for our hedges, generating $18,975 in profit so far with another $32,375 left to gain and these are all stocks we'd be happy to own the the LTP at the net price.
  • TLT – We'll buy back the 20 short Sept $125 puts for 0.42 ($840) and we will roll our 20 Sept $129 puts at $1.30 ($2,600) to 20 of the Jan $135 puts at $6 ($12,000) 
  • TNA – Let's buy back 1/2 (20) of the short Jan $35 pus for $2 ($4,000) as it makes us more flexible.
  • CAT – On track.
  • DXD - For DXD, we can roll the 200 Jan $29 calls at $1.75 to 200 of the Jan $25 calls at $3.10 for net $1.35 ($27,000) and we can buy back the 200 short Jan $33 calls for $1.10 ($22,000) and sell 100 (1/2) the Oct $30 calls for $1 ($10,000).

  • MJ – Low in the channel but we're not worried at the moment.  If we go down 40% ($7.50) on the longs, I'd double down.
  • SOYB – Already over our goal we took half the longs off the table already.
  • SQQQ – We're going to buy back the 150 2021 $50 calls at $7.40 ($111,000) as we made $84,000 in less than a month so it's foolish not to lock that in.  The 200 2021 $35 calls at $10.30 ($206,000) can be rolled down to the 2021 $30 calls at $11 ($220,000) as that's silly not to take advantage of at those prices.  We can also buy back the 50 Sept $43 calls at $2.30 ($11,500) as $43 is too close if this thing starts running up.

In the case of the STP, we are spending $189,740 to add over $500,000 worth of protection  If we get through the weekend, we will certainly re-cover and sell a good $100,000 worth of short calls to pay for those rolls but, into the uncertainty of the G20 – I'd rather have the extra protection in place – just in case Trump isn't as good of a negotiator as he thinks he is.


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  1. The entire world cannot wake up soon enough from the Trump nightmare – the human cost will be very high and history will not be kind to him and his cronies in Congress. I hope I live long enough to see some of that reckoning.

    And yes, it will impact markets!

  2. Google does own the Internet!

  3. "When given the choice between a false, yet satisfying, narrative and having to admit we don’t know, satisfaction is all but guaranteed."

    (Brendan Mullooly)

  4. Interesting:

    Long story short:  On average, smarter people have better investment performance because they make fewer behavioral mistakes and pay lower fees.  There also seems to be some correlation between higher intelligence and market timing ability, but only in certain circumstances.[...]

    The reason why smarter people are better investors has to do with their investment knowledge, not necessarily their brains’ raw processing power.  Smarter people knew to avoid huge trading costs and other fees, they knew to be wary of entering markets at extremely high valuations (i.e. DotCom), and they knew about behavioral biases (i.e. the disposition effect).  Even their “superior stock-picking skill” seems to be partially explained by access to inside information as noted by the authors.

    There are of course exceptions!

  5. Good Morning!

  6. stjean/reckoning  The delay in justice is just to help the dense among us to finally figure out the POTUS is a crook…the day you hope for is coming soon. :)

  7. CTL

    CenturyLink (CTL) upgraded to Outperform from Market Perform at Wells Fargo; sees 28% upside.

  8. Good morning everyone! The replay is now available!

  9. CTL / Albo – At this point, we'll take 28%…

  10. Good morning!  

    Please see above as we have lots of adjustments to the STP and OOP hedges! 

    Russell popping this morning, up about 1% at 1,535, which is the 200 dma – so keep an eye on that.

    Nasdaq up 0.5% just under 7,700 so hope springs eternal but I'm very worried and feel much better with more aggressive hedges.  

    Trump/StJ – I am getting the impression that our allies are sick of his sideshow and I don't think this will be a pleasant meeting for Trump.  

    Image result for trump merkel g20

    That says it all.  

    Google/StJ – Yeah but that's because it's pretty much the default when you open anything – kind of a cheat.  Like MSFT claiming their start-up screen is the most visited site.  Of course GOOG owns YouTube and that's more of a choice so it's Google and Facebook in a death match I guess.  

    Those are really stupid but I like them…

    Choice/StJ – I think this one nails that concept:

    Image result for a reassuring lie

    • Stocks start mostly positive as investors weigh conflicting U.S.-China trade reports in front of the G-20 summit; Dow flat, S&P +0.4%, Nasdaq +0.5%.
    • The South China Morning Post indicated overnight that the U.S. and China had reached a trade truce to continue talks, but the Wall Street Journal followed up with a report indicating that China's Pres. Xi will lay out a set of conditions to Pres. Trump that would need to be fulfilled to advance talks.
    • European markets are mixed, with Germany's DAX +0.3% but France's CAC -0.1% and U.K.'s FTSE -0.2%; in Asia, Japan's Nikkei +1.2% and China's Shanghai Composite +0.7%.
    • In the U.S., Boeing (-2.6%) opens lower after saying the FAA asked it to address a specific risk that its software patch for the 737 MAX does not currently address.
    • Among the S&P 500 sectors, real estate (+0.8%), communication services (+0.5%) and financials (+0.5%) lead the broader market higher, while energy (-0.1%) is the only group in the red so far.
    • U.S. Treasury prices edge higher, pushing the two-year yield 3 bps lower to 1.75% and the 10-year yield down a basis point to 2.04%; U.S. Dollar Index unchanged at 96.23.
    • U.S. WTI crude oil +0.1% to $59.43/bbl.
    • Q1 Corporate Profits fell by $59.3B in Q1 (-2.6% Q/Q; +3.4% Y/Y) compared to the $9.7B decrease in Q4.

    • Denver and Providence, R.I., are the next two cities to get Verizon's (VZ +0.2%) 5G Ultra Wideband service.
    • The company turned on its network in parts of Denver today, and will turn it on for parts of Providence on Monday.
    • Customers can tap those networks with one of four 5G-capable smartphones, Verizon notes (the LG V50 ThinQ 5G, the Samsung Galaxy S10 5G or the moto z3 or z4 when combined with the 5G moto mod).
    • It says customers should expect typical download speed of 450 Mbps, peaking above 1.5 Gbps, and latency less than 30 ms.
    • Verizon is turning on the UWB network in more than 30 U.S. cities this year.
    • Credit Suisse starts off coverage on Tesla (TSLA +0.2%) with an Underperform rating on its view that the EV automaker will be a niche automaker in comparison to Volkswagen.
    • "Both Tesla and VW are treating the EV push as existential, yet they come from different positions. Tesla is a small newcomer to an industry with high barriers to entry. VW is the definition of an incumbent, selling more vehicles than any other automaker including 40x Tesla's deliveries in 2018," notes analyst Dan Levy.
    • While the firm's position isn't anything groundbreaking, it arrives to the sell-side party without any previous baggage.
    • CS assigns a probability-weighted price target of $189 to Tesla.
    • Uber (NYSE:UBER) is talking with regulators about expansion plans into Nigeria and Ghana and to launch a boat service in Lagos, Nigeria, which has about 20M residents.
    • The ride-hail company says it has 36K active drivers in sub-Saharan Africa, but doesn't have a strong presence in West Africa.
    • Chief Business Officer Brooks Entwistle, to Reuters: "We have talked about West Africa today as being a big growth priority for us and launch priority for us moving forward."
    • Abercrombie & Fitch (NYSE:ANF) and Green Growth Brands (OTCQB:GGBXF) plan to expand their partnership after testing Green Growth's Seventh Sense Botanical Therapy products in 10 A&F stores.
    • Abercrombie & Fitch will now carry the CBD products in more than 160 retail stores. The expansion includes Seventh Sense's CBD-infused body lotions, muscle balms, lip balms and sugar scrubs.
    • Source: Press Release
    • Walgreens Boots Alliance (NASDAQ:WBA) fiscal Q3 results ($M): Sales: 34,591 (+0.7%).
    • Net income: 1,025 (-23.6%); non-GAAP net income: 1,338 (-12.1%); EPS: 1.13 (-16.3%); non-GAAP EPS: 1.47 (-3.9%).
    • Cash flow ops (9 mo.): 3,215 (-41.0%).
    • Q3 cash flow ops was $2B.
    • Retail pharmacy USA sales up 2.3% to $26.5B. Pharmacy sales up 4.3%. Prescriptions up 1.9% to 290.7M.
    • Retail sales down 2.9%.
    • Operating income down 20.6%.
    • Fiscal 2019 guidance: Non-GAAP EPS: down $0.06.
    • Shares are up 2% premarket.
    • Previously: Walgreens Boots EPS beats by $0.04, beats on revenue (June 27)
    • KB Home (NYSE:KBHjumps 7.1% in premarket trading of 37,330 shares after fiscal Q2 earnings beat the average analysts' estimate and Buckingham Research analyst Megan Talbott McGrath upgraded the stock to buy from neutral.
    • Raised price target to $30 from $27; average PT is $26.13.
    • McGrath's rating agrees with Quant rating of Bullish, contrasts with the sell-side average rating of Hold (2 Buy, 3 Outperform, 11 Hold, 1 Underperform, 1 Sell).
    • In the past six months, KB Home has risen 21% vs. consumer discretionary sector median performance of 4.0%.
    • Bitcoin's (BTC-USD) breathtaking rally took a major pause over the past 12 hours, with the price plunging from more than $13.5K all the way to $11.2K. A modest bounce over the past hour has brought the price back to barely above $12K.
    • Hodlers will note Bitcoin remains on track for its best quarterly performance since the heady days of 2017, and the price volatility is reminiscent of other major bull periods.
    • Ether (ETH-USD), Bitcoin Cash (BCH-USD), Ripple (XRP-USD), and Litecoin (LTC-USD) are also suffering large declines today.
    • China's central bank said it will use a number of monetary policy tools to keep liquidity reasonably ample and increase market-based interest rate reform to keep the yuan roughly stable, Reuters reports.
    • Though structural changes in China's economic and financial sectors have shown some progress, external uncertainties and unstable factors are increasing, the People's Bank of China said after a quarterly meeting about monetary policy.
    • Reaffirmed stance that monetary policy should neither be too loose or too tight.
    • Said it will keep M2 and social financing growth in line with nominal gross domestic product growth.
    • The yuan is little changed at $0.1454 against the U.S. dollar.

  11. BA is costing the Dow 80 points.

    • Southwest Airlines (LUV +0.3%) has extended the cancellation of Boeing's (BA -2.3%) 737 MAX planes from its flying schedule to Oct. 1 (from Sept. 2).
    • The extension comes after the FAA has identified a new potential risk that Boeing must address on the planes before they can return to service.
    • Southwest is the largest global operator of the MAX, with 34 of the planes in its fleet.

  12. ECB Seen Cutting Rates in September as Draghi Reloads Stimulus

  13. Happy Talk of Trump-Xi Truce Masks Twisting Path to a Trade Deal

  14. WBA came through for us but a long way to go:

    That guidance is around $5.99/ $55 share this year and $6 next year.  $55 is $50Bn market cap and, SO FAR this year (this is Q3 for them), they made about $4Bn so well on track for $5.3Bn.

    As a new trade on them (we already have them in the OOP and LTP), I'd do the following:

    • Sell 5 WBA 2021 $55 puts for $8 ($4,000)
    • Buy 10 WBA 2021 $50 calls for $9.40 ($9,400)
    • Sell 10 WBA 2021 $65 calls for $3.40 ($3,400) 

    That nets you into the $15,000 spread that's $5,000 in the money for $2,000 so the upside potential is $13,000 (650%) at $65.  TOS says the ordinary margin required $5,476 – so it's a pretty efficient way to make $13,000! 

  15. Well things are heading higher now, 1,540 on /RTY and 7,688 on /NQ, 2,930 on /ES and 26,565 on /YM.  

    1,545 on /RTY is the 50 dma, they'll all be back over their 50s if that happens.  

  16. Wow, I kind of like the story on ATOM and it's also a great read on the overall status of semiconductors:

    Moore's Law Is Dead, Long Live Atomera

  17. After tonight’s …….that whole Trump 3rd term thing is looking better and better.

    This one is crazy:

    Marshae Jones was five months pregnant when she was shot in the stomach. Her fetus did not survive the shooting, which the authorities say happened during a dispute with another woman.

    But on Wednesday, it was Ms. Jones who was charged in the death.

    Ms. Jones, 28, was charged with manslaughter and booked into jail on a $50,000 bond, according to the authorities in Jefferson County, Ala. The police have said she was culpable because she started the fight that led to the shooting and failed to remove herself from harm’s way.

    “The only true victim in this was the unborn baby,” Lt. Danny Reid of the Pleasant Grove Police Department, said after the shooting in December, reported. “It was the mother of the child who initiated and continued the fight which resulted in the death of her own unborn baby.”

    So the woman is pregnant, gets in a fight (not at all clear that she started it) is shot by the other woman with the other woman's gun and the baby dies and the mother is now charged with manslaughter for allowing her unborn baby to die.  WOW!  

    Today the Supreme Court, by a 5-4 majority along partisan lines, ruled that gerrymandering is a political issue that is beyond the reach of courts. In 2000, the Supreme Court decided that stopping the Florida recount process was *not* beyond its reach.

    All of these companies are trading at 10x or more sales (red number):

    Musk admits SpaceX valuation is 10x *peak* launch revs. Entire LEO TAM (cruise ships) is probably half the launch market. So SpaceX valuation is ~6x wildly optimistic peak sales. If it ever stops losing money.

  18. I'll let you guys know when I reload on GBTC

  19. KHC-as a holder of Kraft plus Berkshire I must say that the new CEO is doomed to failure if this is his idea a product improvement.

    Kraft Heinz CEO Looks to Ketchup for Sales Spurt

    Ketchup on a hot dog? Really? Especially in Chicago- that is blasphemy :)

  20. Thanks, BDC.  Was tempted to add back in here, but held off.

  21. 10x sales / Phil – Man, NFLX looks severely undervalued in this group! Buy, buy, buy…

  22. There's not enough money to efficiently match the new, more productive knowledge economy. The current global, de facto currency are US dollar-based oil derivatives. As any PSW reader knows, Phil calls all of these "Fake Fake FAKE," which they are because they represent two orders of magnitude more oil than actually could be delivered, or even exists. They are valued at ~$500T plus, though some people believe they are >$1.2Q, and I think probably much higher (due to the fact that there exists a derivative dependency chain where oil is at the top but catalytically cascades down to all other derivatives should a wipeout occur). The world's multi-individual-nation fiat currency model supplies about $220T currently. The world needs more money so it constructs one that still obeys the rules of the money supply, somehow, despite the fact the total money universe is now is 3-10X larger than the money supply it was created with. This is a very fragile situation because it is completely inverted.

    I've been talking about this for a long time but there's not enough money in the world. This is why governments create MORE paper (debt) and somehow get MORE money for it, which is OPPOSITE of the economics 101 principal of making more of something and getting less for it (and higher bond prices lowers interest rates). Many interest rates are negative. The model is completely broken. The existence and use of individual nation-state fiat currencies, where a "currency" can be defined as a system of trust based on laws, is not the most efficient system of trust in a global commerce world. This is why bitcoin et. al. has value. This is the big point that people miss. It is NOT because of transaction speed, or "transactions per second" or whatever idiotic nonsense one reads on message boards. They say "look at Visa, it's so fast." But Visa is not a currency. It's a service platform that runs on top of a currency. Visa could run the same thing on top of bitcoin (and they will once it is the world's de facto currency). Bitcoin is a system of trust, that is, an ability to transact value between two parties who are agnostic to each other's trust. Modern fiat currency also, most definitely, not "real" or "based on something real" or has some sort of intrinsic. Even the Fed points that out, right in their own paper about money.

    "Money, like anything else, derives its value from its scarcity in relation to its usefulness"

    The author of the first linked-to article is right. A fragile situation only needs a spark and then the powder keg goes. If these evangelical nut cases get their war with Iran they've been dry-humping since 2003, we could lose 20% of global oil shipments overnight which could temporarily spike oil to $200 and create a cascading destruction of derivative value which consequently destroys the current inflated money supply we are using to replace the deprecated nation-state fiat currency system that currently undersupplies the world by as much as 10X.

    You might feel safe if you're "hedged," but if you're hedging with stocks/options/futures or what have you, you are "hedged" inside of the very system that is collapsing. If you're super-short options go bonkers what happens if the settlement bank collapses? It's the modern day version of the 1932 bank runs. You show up, there's no money, you go home. That's it. 

    Sleep tight!

  23. Regarding that article on ATOM.  The author doesn't know what he's talking about and nothing I see about that ATOM process is applicable in modern (at least high performance) tech. 

    1) He starts off explaining BJTs (bipolar junction transistors) which, while they have their uses, modern microcontrollers and microprocessors are made out of MOSFETs (metal-oxide-semiconductor field effect transistor), not BJTs.  Entirely different technology.

    2) Once he does migrate to start talking about FETs, which is later on, he is discussing planar FETs, not the tech that goes into current generation parts which are FINFETs.  Instead of the single gate, FINFETs use 3 gates which form a "bridge" around the channel (where the current is carried when the transistor is in the on-state) which substantially reduces leakage current (power that is consumed when the transistor is in the off-state) while reducing on-state resistance (allows the transistor to switch faster while generating less heat--good for performance and power consumption).  A different article discusses use of MST with FINFETs but the tech just hasn't yet been developed.

    3) One of the developments underway is GAA_FET (gate-all-around) which fully surrounds the channel with a metal gate.  This will double down on the benefits from #2.

    4) Silicon is running out of time.  It'll keep going for a while but there is absolutely zero comparison between the function of GaAs or GaAn FETs versus traditional silicon for switching speeds and power consumption. 

    I don't quite know enough about the tech nor am I seeing too much by way of data as to what the impact is but, at the least, this article is trying to oversell the benefits of a technology without making any concrete claims so I'd definitely not trust this author's intentions.  This abstract seems to convey large benefits but there's no statement as to which actual node these benefits are realized at.

  24. I also think gold is in a mutli-year run. New top needs to go over ~$1850 to make a new high. I'm thinking $2400. Albo?

  25. Gold / BDC – $2400 would be 25% over the highs of 2011. What do you see as a catalyst for that move?

  26. StJ – my post before kinda lays it all out

  27. 1,545 – things are getting interesting.  RUT popped 1.5% today.

    Hot dog/Pstas – I do that.  Not that I'm a big hot dog fan though…  As to KHC, the new CEO was a marketing guy for BUD and, if you can sell that crap, you can sell anything, I guess.  This is a very telling note on them:

     The aggressive cost-cutting that once made the company an investor darling has also left Kraft Heinz in a weaker position to try to revive struggling brands,

    Typical Wall Street idiocy…

    The strategy, known as zero-base budgeting, is a mainstay at companies backed by 3G Capital, the Brazilian private-equity firm whose investments include both Kraft Heinz and Anheuser-Busch.

    NFLX/StJ – Still a very tempting short. 

    Fiat/BDC – I think that's what "THEY" want though, a devaluation of currency would let them wipe out debts through inflation rather than default – there's really no other escape for Sov Nations.  I don't see why stocks are bad since we don't care if people buy them with Dollars, Yen or Bitcoin – as long as someone wants them and stocks themselves are certificates that are unique and as trustable as a BitCoin, there are, in fact, 4.6Bn shares of AAPL in circulation and, if you want one, you have to pay $200 for it.  The subsequent $920Bn market cap of AAPL is, UNLIKE BITCOIN, backed by the actual earnings of Apple, Inc. which are, at the moment, running at about $60Bn per year.  

    If the value of the Dollar goes down, then AAPL will collect more Dollars for their products and earnings will be $80B, $100Bn, etc and my unique and readily exchangeable share will be more valuable – keeping up with inflation.  Unlike BitCoin, AAPL tends not to lose 20% of its "value" in a day.  

    • The past few days' explosive gains for Bitcoin (BTC-USD) have been about wiped away in the span of the last 18 hours. Things are volatile, but at current writing, the price has sunk to $10.9K vs. $13.8K late yesterday afternoon.
    • OTCQX:GBTC -17.45%

    ATOM/JPH – Good points, thanks.  I think the new tech is getting away from me as I'm really a MOSFET guy and that's about where I stopped keeping up with the changes.  I just thought the concept sounded good but now you have me doubting it.

    They have popped since their presentation at a conference in June – I think there must be something there but not sure what.

    Gold/BDC/StJ – Same reason as BitCoin to pop – people lose faith in Fiat currency.  

    Speaking of inflation – FU bottom 99%!

    • The Trump administration is considering bypassing Congress in a push to index capital gains to inflation, a tax-cut benefit that would largely accrue to the wealthiest Americans, Bloomberg reports.
    • Doing that via executive order would likely invite legal challenges.
    • A consensus is growing at the White House to push the proposal out soon to ensure benefits are felt before the 2020 election, according to the report.
    • The top 1% of households would realize 86% of that benefit, according to Penn Wharton Budget Model estimates, and it would cut tax revenue by $102B over 10 years.

    What a friggin' joke!  The more inflation they cause (and that is the plan) the more gains they make and the less taxes they pay.  What a great time to have a Cannabis Fund!  

  28. BDC – 2400 would be a godsend.  Currently long GLD, SBGL,HMY, & some NUGT 

    The first 3 are LT positions.  NUGT is  a trading position.

    Keep waiting for silver to begin moving up.  But not much so far.

  29. Inflation: Ma and Pa and Billy Bob should then also get an inflation deduction for the loss of value of their wages and savings. In fact the savings and wage deduction should be allowed while the capital gains is not because capital gains rates of return are risk and inflation adjusted already. Or if not then maybe put your money somewhere else. Or better yet we could shoot for 0 inflation as monetary policy. Real inflation. Not the buggered up BS the government uses. But they like inflation because then they can give you a 2% cost of living raise so you think you’re really killing it when actually you’re worse off than you were last year. 

  30. Phil

    how much do you account for the end of the quarter mark up towards pushing up the indexes here

  31. PGNX – this is one I've owned for a decade, probably from a Pharmboy reco. It's been in a perfect channel since November and just popped out to the upside, I don't have time to research why, but thought I'd post it here in case someone wants to have a look, the options are reasonably priced for a speculative play.

  32. Real inflation/Dawg – What inflation?  The Fed says there's no inflation as I write another $50,000 check for a year of college…

    EOQ/Coulter – We haven't had very reliable sell-offs after quarter ends but I certainly don't discount window-dressing as a factor here.  It's a very silly run-up, no matter what the reason.

    PGNX/MrM – Haven't thought of them in a while, good one.

    Not a very strong close – except for the RUT.

    /NG had a nice day.

    • Boeing (BA -2.8%) skids to its lows of the day following headlines that the company will need an additional three months to fix the latest 737 MAX issue.
    • More to come…

  33. EOQ/Coulter – Last big fail on a new Q was back in early Oct so no proper trend but we are back at the highs we have fallen from before, which is why I set our hedges up to take advantage.  These "hunches" of mine are why the STP is up 666% in 18 months…

  34. Capital gains / Phil – And remember, these are the same people who fight indexing the minimum wage to inflation. But when it comes to putting more money in the pocket of the top 0.1%, there is no limit. Trump really makes a crappy populist on top of being a crappy president and a crappy human being in general.

  35. Phil - Any asset class that's has units going from under $10 to over $10,000 in 6 years is going to have volatile swings. Isn't investing about assigning risks and managing probabilities? Did I ever say invest more than a few hundred bucks, or some small % equivalent of one's portfolio? Nope. So I'm sort of the one being consistent. 

  36. Bennet on ‘no economic growth’