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Just Another Manic Monday as Congress Fails to Deliver Good News

Image result for free money animated gifI want free money NOW!!!  

That's the word from Wall Street, which is in no mood to give Congress a couple of days to decide how to dole out $1.5Tn(ish) in stimulus spending for the first round of the bailout that has, so far, been bothering Americans for a month.  Imagine how things will be in month 3!  We left off Friday Morning with 246,275 global infections, 9,115 deaths and 84,506 recoverd and Italy was the rising star of the virus World with 35,713 infections and 2,978 deaths and the US had 14,250 infections

This morning there are 349,211 Global Infections (42% more), 15,308 Deaths (68% more) and 100,165 Recoveries (18.5% more).  So STOP listening to the news and their "expert" opinion makers and for God's sake stop listening to the Government and think for yourself.  These are statistics – hard facts.  If there is a 3 times faster rate of people being infected than are recovering – that's not good, if there is a 4x faster rate of people dying than recovering – that's not good either so, in general, your take on this weekend is "Not Good" and don't let people tell you otherwise.  

Now, there are mitigating factors like more testing leads to more cases and sure, that's true but more testing doesn't lead to more deaths (hopefully) so that's a hard fact we need to pay attention to and lack of recoveries is a big concern and makes it seem kind of like BS when people try to assure you that most people get mild cases.  If that's true, why have 233,738 people who have been infected stil not recovered?  

No one is being honest with us – that's the main problem.  One true thing we can isolate is 712 people on the Diamond Princess Cruise Ship got infected one month ago and, as of today, 567 recovered and 8 have died.  It was a Princess Cruise Ship, so we can assume they were generally upscale passengers and generally older and it was early on – so they got the best possible care before hospitals began crowding up yet, one month later, 137 passengers (19%) have still not recovered (or died).  

Image result for corona hospitalizationsTHAT is an indication of the burden this virus is placing on the medical system, keeping people in the hospital for 30 days is VERY expensive – especially if they are in intesnive care and/or isolation.  Even if there's only a 1% chance of nurses or doctors catching the virus, over 30 days they are exposed to it 100 time – that's not very good either.  

I'm not saying all this to freak you out.  What I'm saying is we KNOW this because we can do the math and, regardless of what BS you hear out of the White House – they know it too.  Well, maybe not Trump as he doesn't seem to know anything but Fauci knows and Congress knows (that's why they knew to dump their stocks 2 months ago).  Knowing what's really happening allows us to assess the situation without fear and uncertainty and react appropriately.  

We have turned fairly bullish in expectations of Congressional Support and the Futures were sharply lower last night (again) as Congress failed to pass a support bill but it's not because they aren't willing to provide support – it's the form of support they are arguing about.  Support will come – maybe just not today…

Meanwhile, we have a "worst-case scenario" from the CDC but it's not going to make you feel better.  50 teams of experts ran the numbers and they concluded that 2.4-21M Americans would require hospitalization if we do nothing.  For reference, the US has 925,000 hospital beds and, as we just noted, people are in the hospital for weeks to months.  So doing nothing – NOT AN OPTION!!! 

Italy is a test case for having a slow response and a shortage of hospital beds – 59,138 people have been infected – almost all in the past 30 days, and 5,476 of them are already dead with 7,024 recovered so 46,638 outcomes still to be determined but 10,925 (23%) of those people got sick since Friday!  

Realistically, one thing that stops the spread of a virus is stopping the spread of people and "Social Distancing" is one thing if you must go out but staying home and only infecting your family is the other.  In 1918 the US got the Spanish Flu (which did not come from Spain but we didn't like Spain, so…) and, in Philadelphia, they did not stay home and thosands of people died but in St Louis,  the mayor quickly took that advice, closing for several weeks “theaters, moving picture shows, schools, pool and billiard halls, Sunday schools, cabarets, lodges, societies, public funerals, open air meetings, dance halls and conventions until further notice.”    

In 1918 they didn't have our tools to slow the spread of a virus or to treat people but simply shutting things down for 30 days saved thousands of lives in St. Louis and it's happening in many countries around the World now so I lean towards the lower worst-cases, where we don't end up too much worse than China, despite Team Trump's total bungling of the response so far.  

So let's assume that other states follow the lead of NY and California and essentially shut down business for a month.  That won't "cure" the virus – it will simply slow the spread drastically and, like St Louis, drag it out over time so it's easier to deal with on a monthly basis.  We'll end up like China, taking people's temperature before they can enter any public places and we'll clean things more than usual but, other than that – we can kind of get back to normal by June, which is still Q2.  

Image result for city closed virusWe're not going to lose all of Q2 and our GDP is $1.5Tn per month so if we lose 50% of our GDP (doubtful) for 2 months, $1.5Tn would make up for it – as long as it was appropriately distributed.  THAT is what Congress is arguing about – not IF we need the stimulus but HOW the stimulus will be distributed - and that's a very silly reason to panic out of stocks today. 

Also, if there is an end to the virus – then what's the reason to sell Marriott (MAR) at $75 and (VAC) at $48.  $75 is $24Bn for the World's biggest hotel chain and they made $1.3Bn last year and $1.9Bn the year before.  Are you never going to stay in a hotel again?  It MAR going bankrupt?  Maybe the lose $2Bn and get bailed out for $1Bn and they pay that over 10 years and it hits their earnigns fro $100Bn a year – THAT is the damage done – it doesn't wipe out the whole company!  

Marriott Vacation Club (VAC) is even stupider at $48 because that's $2Bn and VAC earned $142M last year but people don't realize VAC is like a time-share property, they only manage the properties and the people who stay there pay the upkeep and taxes – whether they use it or not!  It's not very likely they are hard-hit by the virus so I love them down here:

For our Long-Term Portfolio:

  • Sell 5 VAC October $30 puts for $8 ($4,000) 
  • Buy 10 VAC Nov $40 calls for $18 ($18,000)
  • Sell 10 VAC Nov $75 calls for $8 ($8,000) 

That's net $6,000 on the $35,000 spread that's $8,000 in the money to start so the upside potential at $75 is $29,000 (483%) and your worst case is being assigned 500 shares of VAC at $30 ($15,000) plus the $6,000 spent on the spread would be $21,000 or $42 per share – still 15% below the current price.  That's your WORST CASE!  

We have a lot of companies like that in our portfolio and we're taking advantage by adjusting our positions more aggressively at what we think is a nice bottom but, of course, we also have our hedges.  At this point though, we stand to make so much money if the market turns around that we do hope our hedges get wiped out!  

It's going to be a very interesting week – trade carefully! 


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  1. Good Morning.

  2. Phil/Stocks

    Good morning

    What are you thoughts on TEVA (for their chloroquine drug – but not officially announced) & ROKU?


  3. With 458 dead so far we can be failrly sure that there were around 13,000 cases here already 3 weeks ago when they had only detected 65. Think about that. How pathetic that our best leading indicator is death count. That's how badly the CDC bungled this.

    We'll have a better idea on Friday. I'll predict 1000 dead by end of day Friday. If that plays out then my modeling is looking correct and things are going to get very bad  

    If I'm right then the actual current total number of infections in the US is about 275,000. 

  4. Good morning!

    /RB getting the week off to a good start but I wish I'd taken 2,200 on /ES

    That's the dead contract (April), /RB is now May. 

    Oops, reversing at the open already.  What a mess!

  5. Phil here is your reminder about oil.  What if think it will go up but not sure when?   How best to play that?

  6. It's maddening what is happening now! The GOP is now playing the same game they played in 2008 during the last crisis – avoid helping people who might need it the most! Bush then had to beg the Dems to vote for the needed measures which they did. On the other side, we got the Tea Party! 

    Now we have a $500B slush fund and total lack of coordination of the help at the federal level! I said it before, but it's now criminal! 

  7. So where is the virus epicenter now? I guess the USA….

  8. I played the stick on /ES before the open for a few bucks but it's too scary to trade futures during regular hours. I think I'm done for the day. That and TOS is freezing up on me regularly. 

    Epicenter: NY is out of control. They had sick people riding the rush hour subways for a week or two and didn't realize it. It's a disaster. 

  9. TEVA/Pat – They lost $18.5Bn in 2017 and 2018 and this year maybe they make $3.5Bn and you can buy the whole company for $8Bn at $7.50 so worth a gamble but I think I'd play just a bull call spread like the 2022 $4 ($4.50)/$10 ($2.35) bull call spread at $2.15 as that pays almost 200% at $10 so why takes risks to be greedy?

    By the way, note our Trade Idea in the morning post:

    For our Long-Term Portfolio:

    • Sell 5 VAC October $30 puts for $8 ($4,000) 
    • Buy 10 VAC Nov $40 calls for $18 ($18,000)
    • Sell 10 VAC Nov $75 calls for $8 ($8,000) 

    That's net $6,000 on the $35,000 spread that's $8,000 in the money to start so the upside potential at $75 is $29,000 (483%) and your worst case is being assigned 500 shares of VAC at $30 ($15,000) plus the $6,000 spent on the spread would be $21,000 or $42 per share – still 15% below the current price.  That's your WORST CASE!  

    ROKU/Pat – Too speculative.  Still losing money – no end in site and $9Bn for a company with $1.5Bn in revenues and $160M in losses – surely you can do better!  

    275,000/Dawg – I hope not or those worst-case scenarios will be in play.  

    Oil/Tangled – Though it decays, USO is a reasonable way to play oil and the Jan $2 ($3.10)/$5 ($1.25) bull call spread is $1.85 and you can sell 5 VLO 2022 $25 puts for $7 ($3,500) to pay for 20 of the spreads ($3,700) for net $200 on the $6,000 spread so $5,800 (2,900%) upside potential and VLO is a vital industry and that still gives you 30% downside protection.

    Criminal/StJ – It's not criminal if you have packed the courts with "your" judges.  

    Subways/Dawg – How can our "leaders" be this stupid?  It's amazing!  

  10. We had sick people riding the subway and going to work because they were being told that it's not worse than the common cold and that we only had 15 cases in the US and that it will magically disappear! Our leaders in Washington were being briefed and didn't prepare except for some portfolio adjustments. Our leaders were not stupid, they were hiding the truth – much worse!

  11. I'm pretty sure we only have the Butterfly and the LTP left to review – correct me if I'm wrong!

  12. Dawgydaddy – I think we should be clear on this – TRUMP is responsible the CDC is directly controlled by him….  At the end of the day we cannot shift blame from him.   I've heard this several time this weekend ( even in CA where I live in a hot spot Santa Clara County ) , same people that are still gathering for 'small happy hours. 

    I have been assuming 10X on cases vs reporting – so I have it at closer 10 290K to 300K cases in US now. Once we start testing at the 30K / 50K per day – think we can stop adjusting – but not there yet.

  13. We definitely need to figure out who knew what and when they knew it. If it can be proven that Trump knew how bad this was and lied, then that would be an impeachable offense and I'd like to see him hang for it. But my guess is that this is a Hanlon's Razor situation. Never attribute to malice that which can be adequately explained by stupidity. 

  14. Phil – my son has 10k to invest. What would be your top choices?  I was thinking IMAX but no long term options.  Thx!

  15. Butterfly Portfolio Review: $50,751 is down 50% and we are going to add $100,000 to this portfolio so we can make some aggressive moves.  It is not our intention to have a bullish Butterfly Portfolio but you have to play the hand you are dealt and these are some ridiculously low prices we're able to take advantage of.

    • AAPL – Keep in mind we took profits off the table.  Now we need to fix the losses.  While $260 is a realistic price for 2022, we still have to decide if we'd be better off with a roll.  AAPL has June 2022's and the $200 puts are $43 so we could roll our loss ($98,900) to 25 of those ($107,500) and roll our 2022 $240s ($123,975) to the June 2022 $200s at $62.50 ($187,500) and roll the short 2022 $310 calls ($57,750) to the June 2022 $260 calls at $37 ($111,000).  So, all in all, we added 5 more puts but lowered the strike by $60 (30%) and we still have a $60 spread (was $70) but now it's $40 lower in strike with 6 more months to go.  The whole move was net $1,675 so still a $180,000 spread, now a net $37,175 credit.  

    • DIS – We got crushed on the long calls but they are still viable if DIS recovers.  I don't want to spend too much money but since we can sell 50 June 2022 $120 calls for $10 (50,000) and that pays for us to roll 30 2022 $130 calls at $6.50 ($32,500) to 50 June 2022 $85 calls at $21.50 ($107,500), I suppose we can count on some sales to make up the other $25,000 and now we're in a $175,000 spread that's at the money.  We can also roll the 10 June 2021 $130 puts at $50 ($50,000) to 20 2022 (Jan) $90 puts at $24 ($48,000).

    • MDLZ – Not much damage but may as well take advantage since we got off cheap on the other adjustments.  Let's buy back the June $55 calls at 0.45 ($450) and buy back the short 2022 $62.50 calls at $1.75 ($3,500) and roll 20 2022 $55 calls at $3 ($6,000) to 30 of the 2022 $45 calls at $7.50 ($22,500) and we'll wait on selling more short calls.  We can also roll the 10 short 2022 $50 puts at $12 ($12,000) to 15 short 2022 $42.50 puts at $7.50 ($11,250).

    • MJ – Might be bottoming!  The 60 2022 $20 calls at $1 ($6,000) can be rolled to the 2022 $10 calls at $3 ($18,000) and we'll buy back the 30 short Jan $21 calls at 0.35 ($1,050) to clear the slot.  

    • WHR – Amazing drop on these guys.  I guess no one will ever buy a washer again and, fortunately, we were waiting to sell puts.  Hard to say if now is the time but I can't turn down selling 5 2022 $50 puts for $12.50 ($6,250) and we'll buy back the short Jan $150 calls at $1.50 ($1,500) and we'll roll the 10 Jan $120 calls at $3 ($3,000) to 15 2022 $70 ($17.50)/$100 ($9.50) bull call spreads at $8 ($12,000).  That's net $4,250 to turn a $30,000 way out of the money spread into a $45,000 spread that's at the money.

    • X – Just keeps going lower.  The $8 puts are $4 but I don't think it's worth paying $7.50 to buy back the $12 puts (net $4.50) so we'll just leave it.

  16. $10K/Jeddah – I'd put $400 into 1,000 shares of FTR (0.40) – just in case!  Another $360 in NAK (0.36) as you can afford to gamble a bit when you are young.  Then there's F at $4.14, X at $5.76, HOV at $6.85, CLF at $3.38, SPWR at $5.93, IMAX at $10.50, GPRO at $2.51, BBBY at $4.70… By sticking to things that are cheap, he can afford to buy 10% more whenever he gets $1,000 and all those stocks can double or triple in a recovery and not likely to lose more than 1/2 if they avoid BK, which would make the drip investing more powerful.

  17. COVID19- Unbelievable!

    CDC and HHS and Medicare heads have internet.

    They knew what was happening in China. They SHOULD have also known (being the experts) that this virus was much more infectious than SARS or H1N1 and more easily spread.

    Yet, they not only did nothing to prepare, they placed obstacles in others way to prevent private response to tests being developed! And we are not even talking about other preparations like PPE, Masks, ventilators Hospital preparedness plans, community preparedness, etc etc..

    ok, so maybe that was total incompetence, bordering on criminal….

    However, it hasn't stopped there…we STILL don't have tests for everyone that WANTS to be tested.

    Worse, they are promulgating public health policy based on their incompetence by saying only people with symptoms need to be tested! WTF? Seriously? The senators who are inf3cted don't have symptoms, yet they may have already spread it to others….

    So much damage, so unnecessary! It can STILL be done! But they need to acknowledge their incompetence, get tests outside each Walmart in the country AND lockdown the country for 3 weeks. In the first week of lockdown, everyone needs to be tested…then you isolate those, trace their contacts (hopefully only within the house), and you have the beginning of some control on this thing!

    it is NOT rocket science! And no one in the media is pointing all this out with any degree of conviction or alacrity. 
    And I haven't even gotten to Trump….creating artificial shortages of drugs people need for other life threatening conditions who may not get those drugs because he is practicing medicine on television!,

  18. What was Rand Paul thinking?

  19. What does inflation look like when this is done?

  20. Phil,

    Interesting, AAPL is dropping, but $130 Puts for June 22 are not filling! Any one else see this too!

  21. I'm not buying into this. The "inside" information is too general and one still needs to predict a broad set of potential consequences. For example, they may have been selling simply because they know Trump is an idiot with no leadership ability. Well I know that!

     And I was selling too.

  22. ZM was a good pick.

  23. Right now, the Trump administration is really, really thinking that sending people back to work would be better for the economy than keeping them at home even if millions are infected! And the healthcare system collapses! It's super scary…

  24. FYI – whilst COVID-19 is the talk, the banks, specifically MS, is having a doozy of a time.  So, from my conversations with a very well connected and regarded bonds trader (of whom many know from my posts in 2010, 11, 12, etc when he said bonds yields were going down), MS is in TROUBLE.  If one recalls that in October 2019, the Fed started QE.  That was for MS.  MS has balance sheet issues, and when the Fed did that in October, MS used the funds to purchase ….. Etrade.  Why?  To use them to offload their debt?  On Friday, the precipitous drop was because MS and GS with the Fed were all meeting. If anyone can divulge more….post it up.  One investment bank has failed already.  More will follow.

  25. The Fed move is unprecedented.  According to those with close at hand information, the Fed should have just opened up the discount window.  The lowering of interest rates and what they are doing now is only going to make the bond markets roil.

  26. StJ – the political calculus is simple. Flattening the curve pushes this thing out until August – too close to election time. Instead, push everyone to work and let the 60+'s die in understaffed, overcrowded hospitals that have less than 25% of the proper gear and get it over with. By June the steep curve (fat curve?) has "washed through," to use Trump's words. Then July through October is the usual blame Democrats and "illegals" for hating America and re-capture the white house with 45% of the popular vote.

  27. stjeanluc        Trump has been thinking that since day one its his only chance to remain in power.

  28. Stl/Trump back to work

    that would be a total disaster for society, possibly unrecoverable from.

  29. Look at the muni bond market.  Carnage.

  30. tdump (steve bannon) must be thinking 'Bold' 'Decisive' 'Heroic' may be the way to go and against the advice from those overly cautious health experts… :(

  31. Other than that, Maya, how are things going?  cheeky

    Inflation/Tangled – Well it depends on the actual losses as those are holes that need to be filled and then it depends on where stimulus money ends up as money given to the Top 1% dies in a bank while money given to the bottom 80% gets spent 3.5x before it ends up in a bank so MASSIVE difference in inflation one way or the other.  On the whole though, clearly it would be shocking not to get more than 2% inflation out of this experience.  

    AAPL/Jasu – VIX not high enough.  That's a bigger factor than price at this level.

    Inside/BDC – Well it depends on the timing.  If they walked out of the meeting and called their broker to liquidate based on confidential information specific to their office – it's still not insider trading but it sure is icky.

    ZM off to the races!

    Trump/StJ – He's bluffing.  He's threatening the Dems that he'll do something crazy like risk 20M deaths if they don't sign over his $500Bn slush fund.  It's the same idiotic posturing he does in a real estate transaction if you are unlikely to get caught in one with him – he threatens to go nuclear at least once a day while negotiating.  

    MS/Pharm – Well I hope not, that would be chaos we certainly don't need on top of the chaos we already have.  

  32. BDC – The 65+ crowd is a big portion of the GOP base! Not a great plan…

  33. Exactly stjean!

  34. Bluffing / Phil – He is listening to people on Fox saying that the cure is worse than the disease! Not sure that he is bluffing. I am just hoping that people around him will be able to convince him of the absurdity of this plan. And also, if we had started testing when Korea did (we had our first case on the same date) instead of pretending it's the common cold, we would not be where we are today. Korea is not in confinement now…

    And dawgy – Stupidity should be impeachable when it leads to lives being in danger! 

  35. And there is no doubt, many of those 65 GOP'ers have compromised immune systems….

  36. can't believe people still not letting go of TSLA — when that goes finally goes down as much as everythin else maybe we will have a bottom.  People are selling aapl but TSLA bulls not letting go yet.

    Phil if TECH is the laggard wouldn't that mean AAPL is also

  37. TSLA will start building ventilators and rebrand themselves as a healthcare company!

  38. I like that VAC play when it hits 10. Let this Long Emergency play out! Don't get too itchy too soon. We may need to sit here and say it to ourselves for the next 18 months.

    StJ – even 250,000 deaths is only 0.0075% of the population and Trump has 99.925% of the population left to try and bamboozle. The key is getting through it by July. Then they'll be a stock market jam up he can brag endlessly about (note, very carefully, the link goes to him bragging about ONE UP DAY DURING A 40% LOSS PERIOD). Trump voters were already miserable prior to this thing – that's why they find comfort in blaming vague externalities like "illegals" for all of their own problems. Think how much easier of a sell that is after their lives become even more miserable.

  39.  Seriously, tdump has reached his limit on those 'bamboozled' – anyone can provide a favorable pole.  Just wait and see in November. 

  40. My "not letting go" incredulity is ETHE (stock value 70+, par value $12). Until this deflates it's pure gambling. TSLA is no different.  

  41. I am not sure what I am thinking at this point.  I am back to what I was saying a few months ago – something doesn't add up.  Now, its different things. 

    I live in Indiana.  With the Indianapolis metro area being 2 million people.  If 50% get infected this go around, that is 1,000,000 people.  If 10% need hospitalization (which seems to be about the average) that is 100,000 beds.  I am not sure how many beds we have, in the metro area, but it isn't that.

    Here is what I am hearing on the media:

    1 – No PPE for health care providers.  This is a big deal.

    2 – Lack of beds – this can be somewhat rectified – start taking over dorms, stadiums, parking lots, etc.  Do we have enough health care workers to staff this?  I doubt it, but lets not complicate this.

    3 – Lack of ventilators – OK, that's a problem – easily fixed by not treating "over X age…"

    4 – What about everything else?  I imagine individuals will have need oxygen, breathing treatments (medicine and equipment), antibiotics for secondary infections, steroids (in some cases).  If we don't have enough masks, gloves, gowns, etc. how the F**** do we have enough of those things?  Without that, you will have a lot more individuals decompensate and then need the ICU/ventilator option.

    5 – What about flow control?  If the hospital near my home starts setting up a field hospital in the parking lot, how orderly do think the masses will be at triaging care?  Look what they did with toilet paper?  Ass hats…

    6 – What about the health insurance companies?  When are they going to start begging for money?  Oh – when will Medicare/Medicaid and the individuals hospitals run out of funds?

    Think about number 4…  If the crap is hitting the fan, I don't see how these other supplies aren't going to be really scarce also. 

    End of rant from a frustrated physician…

  42. Oh – did you see the an initial study about risk factors for who under 60 gets sick with COVID-19????

    1 – Obese

    2 – hypertension (high blood pressure)

    3 – type 2 diabetes

    Thank God American's aren't overweight, with high blood pressure eating sugar all the time…

  43. Phil, nice seeing McConnell on the senate floor going nuclear about not getting his way! Kentucky, needs to send this MF packing! just my 2 cents

  44. Thx!Hi Phil,
    Still have some verticals calls hanging for re-adjustments what would be your advise
    AAPL 2021 4 spreads 290 (39.50) / 310 (29.30)

    MMM 2021 5 spreads  155 (16.50 / 175 (9.50)

    IBM 2022 5 spreads 125 (16.70 / 140 (9.90)


  45. Phil/virus

    Tepper of the hedge fund saying lockdown will be bad for economy…..he hasn't grasped the virus impact after people go out to work again….more deaths, hospitals overrun, THEN, the economy will be non existent. Doesnt matter how many ventilators they get.

    why don't people get this? 
    Test, Test, Test, isolate, isolate, contacts…THEN the non infected can go to work. And this has to take no more than 3 weeks…Very simple but they keep trying to dig their way deeper into poop…

  46. danosu77 - perhaps a data point on "infected." I think we need to parse out exposed versus infected. The 10% (really 20%) hospitalization rate is for confirmed cases. The Diamond Princess has good data for this. Let's assume 3,000 people were exposed. 800 got sick. So far 8 have died and as Phil pointed out 157 of the remainder have yet to recover.

    Doh iI still came up with 50,000 beds needed. So nevermind. We're still screwed.

    jasu1send some cents here:)

  47. Fauci says he can’t stop Trump from talking at briefings

  48. Maya,

    why don't people get this? 
    Test, Test, Test, isolate, isolate, contacts…THEN the non infected can go to work. And this has to take no more than 3 weeks…Very simple but they keep trying to dig their way deeper into poop…

    I disagree.  Right now we don't have enough test kits.  Most, don't need TEST TEST TEST.  Plus, there is a lot of conflicting data on how soon positives show up. I also haven't seen data on false positives/false negatives – which makes sense, we don't have a lot of data period.

    Please remember, we need these test kits to know which patients to isolate and to let health care workers work.  The majority of people only need to be tested to satisfy their morbid curiosity.

  49. Someone in my office in NYC tested positive in addition to many people in the building.   Management won't disclose who in our office was positive and is only contacting those who were in close proximity (however they determine that).  My local hospital in NNJ has eight covid patients so far and all but one are under 50 and on ventilators.  The other patient is a 61 yr  old doctor who works at the hospital in oncology.  I see that they have also built a field hospital in the parking lot at Mt Sinai.  Sure, we're ready to go back to work!

  50. Ran Paul had part if his lungs removed resulting from complications from his neighbor's attack on him. He regularly experiences shortness of breath. 

  51. Phil/IBM position

    i am not sure what portfolio its in, but am pretty sure it was an official position: I have 

    5 IBM Jan 2022 $120/140 spreads for $10 net, (now $$4.95/$5.35)with 5 sold $120 puts for $13, now $43.

    Adjust? Leave alone?

    thank you…sorry for the rant earlier but being in the field, it's frustrating to watch lives being impacted so negatively, including unnecessary deaths.

  52. Phil/ IBM

    ITS 10 spreads and 5 puts

  53. LOL BDC.

    GDX and JNUG are locked and loaded.  Starting small call positions in June.

  54. Dani/tests

    my point was that we need a LARGE supply of tests…ala South Korea

  55. For GDX, it really needs to finish at the top of today's candle.  Start small, and $20 is the stop loss.

  56. Inflation hedge portfolio: GLD SLV GBTC VTIP, and maybe short UUP?? Maybe not the last one since all currencies will inflate.

  57. one more, at the very least

  58. BDC – as Phil noted, and I have posted many times before, besides staples (milk, bread, etc), inflation is nonexistant, esp the way we measure it now.  Gold is more of a hedge for bullets, smokes, etc. Water is still #1, but gold is going to rocket to $2000 soon.  It hit $1700, and I got out, now I am slowly reloading for the next catapult.

  59. Pharmboy – lets start cooking up some hydroxychloroquine!

  60. LOL.  Yeah, in my RV!

  61. QQQ went from 165 to 172 in an hour. Yeah! Everything's fixed! Markets only need to retrace 1 year's worth of gains where it was already overvalued a year ago! That's it! 

  62. ZM/ Phil/BDC

    The system is great!. I used for the first time this weekend with a "family" meeting, from N.Zealand where my son is, to TX, IL, FL, Dubai y we in Spain.

    Perfect!, at the beginning was a mess almost nobody knew it but then everybody was waiting to speak (the system collapsed a couple of

    But it´s intuitive, fast, (with very different Wifi´s, is light in video demand..pity I didn´t know it before….or invest in it before.

  63. Naz up 48% since Trump's election. Has the whole world stopped working? I can't remember.

    Stupid market.

  64. COVID-19


    now Kudlow saying we have started WIDESPREAD testing.

    He did not say e a toy what widespread means or exact numbers or what populations.

    if true, and we have the tests available, that's the best thing we can do along with isolation.

  65. Kudlow is a moron.

    Also, FYI.  The Fed did open the window last week for primary dealers to loan funds to investment banks for stock purchases.  Now that is PPT at work!!!!

  66. I would be a seller of ZM up here.  My team has been using Microsoft Team's the last few weeks, which is their answer to Slack.  It has robust video conferencing ability that is almost as good as Zoom, but also includes a bunch of Slack features which makes collaborating within a team very easy.  Lastly, it is included with an O365 license!  Similarly to how Internet Explorer won the browser wars in the 90's, I'm not sure how Slack or ZM justify their valuations down the road, when Microsoft barely flexes their development muscles, and completely negates what little moat these companies had, with new software that is just a throw in on the widely purchased O365 package.

  67. palotay…we have been using MS Team as well.  Very easy and cheaper.  I have also used Zoom, which has a ton of features, but rarely are all utilized.

  68. both Quebec and Ontario just announced closure of all non essential businesses

  69. EVR/Phil     investment opinion.  They are M & A and restructuring advisors.  Stats on Finviz look decent and the price is back to 2013 levels 

  70. MA Governor just did the same today.

  71. Indiana just shut non-essentials for two weeks, but it doesn't start until Wednesday.  Here's the thing…what is essential? 

  72. EVR     realized it has lousy options

  73. essential/danos…….heheh, that would be you, amigo. Elderly sort of retired epidemiologist, not so much. And grocery stores are, too, fortunately.

    but, not, *sob*, the Y or my karate gym.

  74. Been using Zoom at work as well although we have been doing calls using Google Hangout Meet as well since we have a G Suite organization. Used Zoom to make calls with my family as WhatsApp limits you to 4 people. I imagine that Microsoft and Google will prove to be tough competition in the coming years though. 

  75. Phil, what do you think about BRK.B?  Seems having lots of cash on hand is good right now.

  76. SQQQ / Phil

    I have 20 Jan 2021 SQQQ 25/27 bull call spreads. I'd rather cash them in now for slightly less than $2 than wait 9 months. I've offered the spreads at $1.85, but no takers. I don't know how much is reasonable. Am I being greedy asking $1.85? Also, I can't sell short calls in my account unless as part of a spread, so I can't just sell my long calls and worry about the short calls later. I'm certainly not desperate, but if I had the money now, I would invest it. Suggestions would be appreciated. Thanks.

  77. Long-Term Portfolio Review: – $100,016 is down 80% on our longs and our STP is at $391,066 (up 291%) so net $491,082 out of $600,000 is still down 18.15% on our paired portfolios.  As we often point out – you can't prevent all the damage from a sell-off but you can mitigate it to a large extent.  Of course, if we were to simply cash out – the stocks we want to buy are much more than 20% off – so we're still in good shape overall thanks to our hedges.

    Not all the new short puts aren't in here yet:

    • BA – Only short put I want to change only because it's so silly now.  The 2022 $110 puts were sold for $30 so net $80 is not a big deal with BA just under $100 but the puts are $50 ($25,000) and the June 2022 $75 puts are $30 so we can sell 8 of these instead for $24,000 and that means we still collected net $14,000 in 8 or $17.50/share so our new net is $57.50 for 800 shares ($46,000) vs net $80 for $500 shares ($40,000), which is why you should ALWAYS be looking for these rolling opportunities as we've lowered our break-even by $22.50 (28%) or really $23.625 as we did use $1,000 that we had collected on the roll….
    • The rest of the short puts aren't in enough trouble to bother with.

    • SIX – Boy did we pick a bad month to enter them!   Just the reflexive roll from the 2022 $15s at $5.50 to the 2022 $10s at $8 for net $2.50 (the magic number for a $5 roll).  
    • SKT – We've chased them to BK before so be warned but I think this is just silly and we can buy 2,000 more shares for $6.05 and sell 20 2022 $5 calls for $2.40 so we're buying 2,000 more shares for net $3.65 and, if you don't want to do that, then you should be thrilled to liquidate at $6.05.  The 2022 $13 puts at $8.70 are not much of an assignment risk at net $4.30 but we can sell the $10 puts for $6.80 so let's sell 20 of those ($13,600) and put a stop on the $13 puts at $10 so, worst case, it's a 1/2 roll but, if SKT pops back up, we'll make twice as much money.  

    • AMZN – We took advantage of the high VIX.  Hopefully it doesn't return. 
    • AVGO – Let's roll the 5 short 2022 $250 puts at $95 to 10 short 2022 $180 puts at $50 and let's roll our 10 long 2022 $280 calls at $13.10 ($13,100) to 10 long 2022 $200 calls at $35 ($35,000) and I'm fine with the short call target – this is just a bump in the road!   We bought the bull spread for $14,250 and we're salvaging $13,100 from the long puts – not much of a loss, is it? 

    • BRK/B – Brand new.
    • CSCO – Not in trouble. 
    • DFS – Big trouble!   The 2022 $60 calls are down to $3 ($6,000) so let's roll them to 30 of the 2022 $25 ($8.50)/$40 ($4) bull call spreads at $4.50 ($13,500), so we're spending $1.50 per contract to drop more than 50% in strike + $4,500 on 10 more spreads and we're in a $45,000 spread – I can live with that!  On the short put side, we can roll the 10 2022 $70 puts at $45 ($45,000) to 20 2022 $50 puts at $30 ($60,000).  Now we've taken a net $7,500 CREDIT to drop to 30 2022 $25/40 and 20 short $50 puts and it was net $28,800 before (not counting gains on previous short calls) so now net $21,300 on the $45,000 spread.  We were promising to buy $70,000 worth of DFS and now we're promising to buy $100,000 worth – not a huge additional commitment and, when we were buying them for $80 – if I had said how much would you like to buy for $50 – I bet the answer would have been "lots!" 

    It's very easy to lose perspective when things are selling off like this but won't MORE people use credit cards when they run tight on money?  Yes, there may be more defaults but, unless the GOP Congress drastically changes the bankruptcy laws – they can't be discharged so the overall collection rate remains high.  Does DFS make more money when 1M customers buy $20 items and they collect 1.5% from the merchants ($300,000) or do they make more money when 1M customers don't pay their $200 balance and pay 1.5% interest for the month ($3M)?  

    • FCX – Not in trouble. 
    • GILD – In the money. Great for a new trade at these ridiculous premiums.  

    GILD is a good example of how silly your portfolio balance can get.  The 15 $55/65 bull call spreads with the $62.50 puts are $10 in the money on a $15,000 spread yet the broker says the spread is worth $100.  If I really thought we could get those prices I would double down out of spite!  

    • GM – Yuch!  The 30 2022 $30 calls are $1.25 ($3,750) and they can be rolled to 50 of the 2022 $18 ($4.85)/$25 ($2.40) bull call spreads at $2.45 ($12,250) and we can roll the 10 short 2022 $35 puts at $17.20 ($17,200) to 30 2022 $18 puts at $5.50 ($16,500) so we were going to buy $35,000 of GM at $35 and now we're going to buy $54,000 worth at $18 – these are not big stretches of our commitments. 

    • IMAX – Not sure they'll recover by Sept or I'd be more aggressive.  The 50 Sept $14 calls at $2.70 can be rolled down to the $10 calls at $4.50 for $1.80 ($8,000) and the 50 short June $20 puts at $9.70 ($48,500) can be rolled to 50 short Sept $15 puts at $7 ($35,000) as we don't have to make it all back on one roll – we have our whole lives to sell IMAX puts….  So we're spending net $21,500 to improve the position and it was net $11,500 to start (not counting short call profits) so in for $33,000 on 50 means $16.60 is our break-even.  That's not out of the question.

    • JO -  Actually doing well in this crappy market – deep in the money and, in fact, it's showing net $9,000 on the $10,000 spread so let's cash that in and leave the short puts.  
    • LABU – If there was ever a time for Biotech to step up and save us, now would be it.  We'll just do the mechanical roll and move the 20 2022 $20 calls at $7.50 ($15,000) to 20 2022 $10 calls at $11.50 ($23,000) and I'm fine with the $35 target.  

    • LB – Back on sale!  Let's see, they just sold 1/2 of Victoria's Secret and collected $550M and didn't have a chance to spend it when the market crashed and now the whole company is valued at $2.4Bn at $8.75.  Sounds good to me!  They made $644M last year and 80% of it is during Q4, which isn't now.  Let's roll the 50 2022 $17.50 calls at $2.85 ($14,250) to 50 of the 2022 $7.50 calls at $4.60 ($23,000) and let's roll the 20 2022 $20 puts at $13.60 ($27,200) to 40 of the 2022 $10 puts at $5.50 ($22,000).  

    • M – Boy they are just giving these retailers away  We can roll the 20 short 2022 $25 puts at $10.55 ($21,100) to 40 2022 $8 puts at $4.50 ($18,000) and we'll roll the 40 2022 $10 calls at $1.25 ($5,000) to 60 2022 $5 calls at $2.50 ($15,000).
    • MIDD – How can people not need ovens?  Well I guess the logic is the restaurants are closed so no need for new ovens but then MIDD doesn't have to make ovens and, as a manufacturer, that's called a VARIABLE cost.    Now you can buy them for $2.4Bn at $43.85 and they made $350M last year and do you know what they'll make next year?  $350M!  This year, probably not but we don't buy them for this year, do we?   Big loss so far but we can roll the 10 Dec $110 puts at $65 ($65,000) to 20 Dec $75 puts at $33 ($66,000) and the Dec $100 calls aren't worth rolling but we'll buy back the Dec $120 short calls and grab 20 of the Dec $30 ($18)/$50 ($8) bull call spreads at $10 ($20,000) so we've spent net $19,000 more and we were in for a net $2,200 credit so now we're in the $40,000 spread for net $16,800 but at more than 50% below where we started.  

    While it's really fun when your net $2,200 credit spread ends up paying $22,200 because the stock went straight up (or staying flat would have done it), that doesn't always happen but we have $50,000 allocation blocks in the LTP so plenty of cash on the sidelines to improve the position.

    • MJ – Let's roll the 30 2022 $15 calls at $1.35 ($4,050) to 50 2022 $5 ($5.20)/$10 ($2.60) bull call spreads at $2.60 ($13,000) and buy back the 30 short 2022 $30 calls at 0.30 (no more) and we'll wait a bit to deal with the short puts.
    • MO – The March $47.50 puts expired $13.22 in the money ($6,610).  We can roll the 10 2022 $40 puts at $14.30 ($14,300) to 20 of the $32.50 puts for $9.30 ($18,600) to consolidate the puts and we can roll the 30 2022 $40 calls at $3.85 ($11,550) to the $25 calls at $9.50 ($28,500).  

    • PAA – Still dropping like a rock.  Fortunately, the 2022 $5 calls are $2 so we can buy 4,000 more for $5.25 and sell 40 of the $5 calls for $2 and we're in for net $3.25 ($13,000) which is $9.37 on 8,000 and the 30 short 2022 $15 puts have a $12,750 loss so we'll just roll those to 40 of the 2022 $8 puts at $4.60 ($18,400) and we'll be thrilled to get back to $9 one day.  

    • SPWR – Doesn't need fixing.
    • TD – We can roll the 10 short July $55 puts at $21.55 ($21,550) to 20 Oct $40 puts at $10.50 ($21,000) and our 25 Oct $45 calls at $1.55 ($3,875) can be rolled to 25 Oct $30 calls at $7.50 ($18,750).
    • TOL – Catastrophic dive!  The 10 short 2022 $35 puts at $21.50 ($21,500) can be rolled to 20 $20 puts at $9 ($18,000) and the 15 2022 $33s at $1.60 ($5,280) can be rolled to 40 2022 $13 ($4.50)/$25 ($2.60) bull call spreads at $1.90 ($7,600).  These builders didn't go BK in 2008 and it was their crisis! 

    • TXT – The 10 Dec 2021 $40 puts at $19.50 ($19,500) can be rolled to 20 of the $25 puts at $8.40 ($16,800) and the 25 Dec 2021 $30 calls at $4.15 ($10,375) can be rolled down to 25 $17.50 calls at $8.80 ($22,000).

    • VALE – Let's roll the 40 2022 $10 calls at $1.10 ($4,400) to 40 2022 $5 calls at $3 ($12,000) and let's roll the 20 2022 $12 puts at $6 ($12,000) to 40 of the 2022 $80 puts at $3 ($12,000).
    • VIAC – The 20 2022 $27.50 puts at $17.75 ($26,625) can be rolled to 30 of the 2022 $17 puts at $9 ($27,000) and the 50 2022 $25 calls at $1.60 ($8,000) can be rolled to 50 of the 2022 $5 ($7)/$15 ($3) bull call spreads at $2 ($10,000) and you can do that as a new trade with just 10 of the short puts for net $1,000!  

    • WBA – In good shape.
    • XOM – Let's roll the 10 2022 $50 puts at $22.65 ($22,650) to 20 more of the 2022 $27.50 puts at $7.20 ($14,400) to clean things up and we'll roll our 20 2022 $50 calls at $2.60 ($5,200) to 30 of the 2022 $30 calls at $8 ($24,000)

    Now we need to add a some hedges to cover this stuff!  

  78. Phil, AMYZF is down about half from where we bot it, good DD point or wait for lower?

  79. Interesting article (link below) about trying to back into the real magnitude of the outbreak in Iran. Sad to say but because we've done very little testing here, similar math could help get to the true state of the situation here, and I'll give one example. NY is trying to increase hospital beds to 80,000 and they'd like to have 110,000. So they're thinking they'll need the added 25,000-50,000 beds for cv patients, and if the hospitalization rate is 20% then the state of NY expects at least 125,000 cases.

  80. My first, request email from a commercial tenant asking if they can defer rent payments until financially feasible. They have government contracts for the VA, surprised they would be the first to request. Majority of my income is from rentals comm/land/SF and hard money. Now its a waiting game to see how far this goes. Im not leveraged, but a few investors I know are. Not going to be pretty picture for banks.

    Anyone else in this position? Investments, most investments will yield zero and go negative, for how long, no one knows.I think this market along with assets that can be sold quickly will be liquidated if they dont move this along at lightspeed.

  81. What are the chances that Macy's goes bankrupt in the next 12 months?  This selling is absolutely relentless.  I understand that the suspension of the dividend has triggered forced selling by div focused funds, but the pace is absurd.

  82.  I have no insight on M going BK but as likely as not given the situation. Our dear leaders (local, state and federal) have essentially shut down economic activity. Now that the Federal pork window is open, the DC gasbags are scrambling for their piece of the action and both sides are not wasting a good crises by advancing whatever enhances their agenda. I stand by my prediction that this will all come apart as people realize they have been once again bamboozeld and will take matters in to their own hands. 

  83. Kustomz/  Most tenants for which rent is a substantial portion of their expenses will be looking for rent relief. I've heard of a number of large landlords who are offering up to 6 months, in exchange for extended term. IWG, parent company of Regus has requested 6 months rent free.  Small businesses with weak balance sheets will tank without it.

  84. 53 cents on /RB?? /HO at $1.03. At 20 gallons of gas and 12 gallons of heavy distillates per barrel… this doesn't add up to anything other than the refiners are screwed. Either that or gasoline is underpriced by a lot. 

  85. SIG down 26%. BK????

  86. Damn, that takes a long time.  That's why we cashed out the old LTP – it has $1.8M in it and there was no way we could have unwound all that on the fly!  This LTP is, so far, is unburdened by profit….

    Actually we were up 30% out the gate – we should have cashed in!  

    Let is play out/BDC – I agree with that, it's going to be a process.  If we keep going down, the STP will be well over $500K but I don't want to have to plow it all back into the LTP if we can avoid it.

    Indianapolis/Dano – There are 7,441 hospital beds in your region and 50% are full at any given time - does that give you something to think about?  This is a movie-level catastrophe in the making unless the Government does something NOW (like 2 weeks ago) to at least stop the spread until they can get a handle on supplies but they have so bungled the supplies that they are forced to pretend the spread is not a big deal or "Dear Leader" might look bad.  

    McConnel/Jasu – Moscow Mitch doing his job for Mother Russia.  

    Calls/Youri – The rule of thumb is that if you can roll down $10 in strike for $5, that's a good move so you just keep going until you find a strike you can't roll to anymore.  Since you are in 2021, however, you also want to look at 2022.   The $290 calls are $8.40 and you paid net $10.20 for the spread so not so terrible as you are getting $8.40 back.  If you can afford to have naked calls, you can just set up a 2022 spread and wait for those to expire but, if not, the June 2022 $300 calls are $22.50 so + $14 for those and the $260 calls are $34 so $11.50 more for $40 in strike seems like a good start and you could sell $300 calls for $22.50 to pretty much pay for the whole roll (but that would leave the naked Jan calls).  

    • Same with MMM.  Jan $155s are $7, which is what you paid for the spread and 2022 $135s are $16 and you can keep the short Jan $175s and, when they expire, sell another set to pay for the roll. 
    • IBM 2022 $125s are $5.25 and you paid $6.80 for the spread and the $105s are $11.50 so + $4.70 to gain $20 in strike is a no-brainer.  

    Tepper/Maya – These guys don't value human beings and they don't think the "little people" matter in the economy.  It's like worrying about rust to them – you just throw out the part and get a new one.   Much more important to preserve the idiot-in-chief who gives you low tax rates and the status quo that let's you ignore social safety nets, living wages and health care as a human right.  THAT would be Tepper's World falling apart!  

    IBM/Maya – I think the Money Talk Portfolio so it wasn't adjusted as it wasn't bad on 2/6, when I did the show.  Now I would just roll the 2022 $120 calls at $6.50 down to the $100 calls at $12.50 and see what happens.  If we pop, you don't want to miss it and if we go lower, well $3 for $10 in strike is a good price any time.  

    ZM/Advill – It's really catching on.  AAPL screwed up by not making FaceTime work with android.  It's great but people can't use it if just one person in the group doesn't have an IPhone.  

    ZM/Paloatay – For business I agree but not many people have 0365 these days.  

    EVR/Stock – Not going to be much business for a while but the valuation is very fair at 5x so worth a toss for a long-term position.  The don't have long-term options but you can sell Sept $30 puts for $4.75 and net in for $25.25 – that's a good way to start.  

    BRK.B/Tangled – I'm sure they are busy evaluating but step one is to keep the lights on at their own holdings.  Their stock portfolio took a massive hit so, on paper, their cash position will be wiped out by stock losses (on paper).  Other companies with cash don't have portfolios that can offset it like that.

    SQQQ/Sag – Well that is no way to construct a spread – you really can't make much money on those.  The bid asks are $12.10/14.80 and $10.50/$14.10 so, rather than ask $1.85 for the spread, I'd ask $14 for 2 (1/10th) of the $25s and I'd bid $11.50 for 2 of the short $27s and see which one fills first and then see if you can make a $2 spread out of it.   After you get rid of the other 2 – start the process again with the next 2 of each.  In all these fluctuations – one side or the other is bound to fill at whatever you ask – maybe both if you are patient. 

    AMYZF/Mr M – I don't remember buying that?  It's just a very speculative penny (0.07) stock so, unless you plan on dumping it, I'd DD.  

    Banks/Kustomz – Yes, if the Government doesn't have a plan, this can turn very ugly.  Which is why we're selling off now – no plan.

    M/Palotay – Depends on what the Government does to mitigate and what their landlords say.  To some extent, what are you going to do – kick Macy's out of your mall for not paying?  That would be the end of your mall – people are not lining up to fill those spaces (see all the empty Sears stores).  

    Gasoline/Dawg – It sure is overpriced at the pump – still $2.40 in Florida for regular and I'm paying $3 for premium.  

    SIG/Jeddah – Announced they are closing all stores in the US.  As if this wasn't going to happen and is a huge surprise….

    You can't stop people from panicking – no matter how silly it is.  Especially since all the rings and gifts will likely be put off and not skipped and this is another variable cost business – if they don't sell, they don't have to buy more diamonds and gold (though they should during the crash).  

  87. Phil/room – what are your thoughts on CMG here – they are up but I don't see them doing more business with only take out, what do you think

  88. SVXY/Maya – you got into some short VIX last week didn't you? Did you also do debit spreads on SVXY? Those are starting to get some traction. 

  89. Phil, using your Macy's logic above, couldn't the same dynamic destroy SKT?  If the outlet stores can't pay temporarily?

  90. AMYZF/Phil – April of 2018 you bot 10K shares at .16 so I followed.

  91. The ET 2022 5/10 spreads are under a dollar. Going to roll the dice on 200 of them if I can get filled. 

  92. Phil/IBM/COVID19

    Well, had to spent $7 to move lower in the IBM calls from $120's to the $100's. Not too too bad..wanted to spend only $6 but could not get that.

    I have watched hospital CEO's, administrators at insurance companies, politicians…try to make ONLY an economic decision to solve any health problem. They don't get it! The longer you wait, the more you delay, and every time you solve less than 100% of the health problem, the more it's gonna cost you in the long term in dollars! And that doesn't even take into account the human cost of suffering! Have seen it on 3 continents over 30 years and had countless arguements, fights with the bean counters!

    NOW, some on CNBC are talking about mass testing…FINALLY! .6 weeks late but, better now than in another 6 weeks! Let's see what happens.

  93. Dawgs/Vix

    I did not do the trade as I could not get the prices I wanted.

    will try again on a spike and post here

  94. Eleven States Now Letting Uninsured Sign Up for Obamacare

  95. SVXY – I've got 46 of the 2021 30/50 spreads and 154 of the 40/50 spreads and into all that for $37,000 so hoping SVXY gets back to 50. It was at 58 at the bottom of the January 2019 pullback so there's a chance. That wouldn't heal my portfolio from its covid-19 infection but it would help a whole lot. 

  96. How South Korea Flattened the Coronavirus Curve

  97. SVXY/Dawgy

    Be careful out there. 

  98. Coronavirus bill – Pelosi and the House are loading up the bill with porkulus. Solar and wind energy credits, post office debt relief, airline greenhouse gas regulations… classic horse crap.

  99. Pork- that has recession relief written all over it. Just what is needed. A cynic, however might consider that criminal or sociopathic. 

    It is never about the people, it is always about power. 

  100. Seriously boys. The Post Office has always been treated like a red-headed stepchild, making a living selling freaking stamps and processing passports and the last I looked, solar and wind provide energy and that industry is looking for a nice handout.

    Everyone gets a seat at the trough…

  101. COVID19

    From NYT:

    As global deaths from the virus surge past 15,000, officials and experts worldwide are scrutinizing South Korea for lessons. And those lessons, while hardly easy, appear relatively straightforward and affordable: swift action, widespread testing and contact tracing, and critical support from citizens


    there you go…it's not rocket science. The CDC, HHS had no desire or inclination to do anything…for months!

  102. Cont'd from the same NYT article: (abridged for space)

    The head of the World Health Organization, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, has hailed South Korea as demonstrating that containing the virus, while difficult, “can be done.” He urged countries to “apply the lessons learned in Korea and elsewhere.”


    Lesson 1: Intervene Fast, Before It’s a Crisis

    Just one week after the country’s first case was diagnosed in late January, government officials met with representatives from several medical companies. They urged the companies to begin immediately developing coronavirus test kits for mass production, promising emergency approval.

    Within two weeks, though South Korea’s confirmed cases remained in the double digits, thousands of test kits were shipping daily. The country now produces 100,000 kits per day, and officials say they are in talks with 17 foreign governments about exporting them.

    Officials also swiftly imposed emergency measures in Daegu, a city of 2.5 million where contagion spread fast through a local church.

    Lesson 2: Test Early, Often and Safely

    South Korea has tested far more people for the coronavirus than any other country, enabling it to isolate and treat many people soon after they are infected.

    The country has conducted over 300,000 tests, for a per-capita rate more than 40 times that of the United States.

    “Testing is central because that leads to early detection, it minimizes further spread and it quickly treats those found with the virus,” Kang Kyung-wha, South Korea’s foreign minister, told the BBC, calling the tests “the key behind our very low fatality rate as well.”

    Though South Korea is sometimes portrayed as having averted an epidemic, thousands of people were infected and the government was initially accused of complacency. Its approach to testing was designed to turn back an outbreak already underway.

    To spare hospitals and clinics from being overwhelmed, officials opened 600 testing centers designed to screen as many people as possible, as quickly as possible — and keep health workers safe by minimizing contact.

  103. And 1020 – remember, a $500B slush fund is not pork. It's just rewards for the makers! But a $1000 check to the "little people", that's some big pork there…

  104. $500Bn?  Hey, unless you are giving that $1,000 to 500M people…   Oh wait, I thought they said we couldn’t afford to do that?   How many people do we have?   How much for children?  Still not $500B?  Not even close?   Thank God Conservatives suck at math or what would we be able to argue about?

  105. Phil /  Trump is either ignorant or a sociopath or both – HE IS THE PROBLEM – the rest of the world knows what to do quarantine, test, and treat to get past the worst of it.  - he is crippling us AGAIN.  Talking about minimizing distancing and quarantine is the WORST thing he has done – well lets add to the ' its just like a cold. we have it under control – very few cases, Find up our test process deliberately,- Make no mistake he is responsible  killing US citizens with his actions.  If he moves forward with the asinine ideas he is floating out today there is no hope.     

  106. Phil/ SQQQ 

    I am still holding 40 Sept/June SQQQ BCS 16/26.  I can’t afford the margin to sell the Sept. 16’s while leaving the June’s to expire.  So I am thinking of rolling the June’s back a month.  I can roll to the the May 25’s for even.  I lose $1 in position but don’t paying anything.  If SQQQ remains above 29, I can roll it back out (June) for more premium or just cash out everything.  Regardless, I am not comfortable having to wait until June for the premium to bleed out of the shorts and the need for protection has waned.  Besides by June, it may be to late for both sides.  Is there any other move I should consider in lieu of my margin issue and my desire to get the most from this trade that I can?  Thanks.

  107. For those thinking about self-medicating with chloroquine: DON'T. It might kill you.

  108. The way I see it from what we are doing at the hospital and communication with colleagues is that we are behind the virus without a doubt. We have an embarrassing issue with being unable to protect our healthcare personnel, and our testing paradigm is not hitting the mark…much too slow and not inclusive enough

    If Trump relaxes social distancing too early, I fear  there will be a very poor outcome. He's ultimately choosing to accept a mortality rate that we are still not certain of, in exchange for mitigating further economic strain. 

    Ideally, we should be able to contain this where outbreaks are present and allow the remainder of the country to get back to work. But, if we don't, I think we will not be too worried about the economic damage if we get it wrong. The hospitals will be full, many more will die from the virus and other will suffer from lack of access for other care. We don't have enough doctors/nurses/hospital staff to take care of so many ill at once, so that could push us right into an Italy type situation at which point we will have to shift to a model that tries to preserve resources and people that are "valuable", 

    I really hope none of that happens.  As I see it Trump gets one shot at getting this right. Getting it wrong could be totally devastating to the country and its people. 

  109. And what kinki said…don't take the chloroquine unless prescribed. No conclusive data to support it for this indication. 

  110. This situation is bullshit my wife is a surgery nurse who works 12 plus hour shifts they have to use one mask for the whole day because they don't  have enough for proper procedures. The only screening the hospital is doing which didn't start til last Thursday is a temple scan for temperature scan then asked how they feel. Then they push them into work. The response to this whole situation froze the government  is sickening and really hasn't gotten much better.  I can't believe they don't have the test required to verify if people have this. And I think health care workers should be getting tested once a week as they are the people on the front lines dealing with the unknown and don't have proper PPE 

  111. Negotiators close on nearly $2 trillion virus aid package

  112. WHO warns ‘pandemic is accelerating’

  113. Trump and co had plenty of time to get us prepared beforehand. Now there are literally people (doctors/nurses) begging for supplies and help.

    The CDC loosened its recommendations for healthcare workers protection to scarves and bandanas over the mouth and nose….I'm serious! Bandanas?? What is this?? There are folks literally seeing masks, trying to sterilize used masks, using other equiptment (paint gear) to try and protect themselves. 

    Hospital administrators are pushing those on the front lines to do more with less every day while they sit in an office and avoid all of the risk. This virus shows you how little we are valued today. I'm completely disgusted at this point, fearful for my colleagues, myself, my family and for the patients whom we really can't care for properly.

  114. Typo…people are sewing masks

  115. Good morning!

    Well, this is different – limit up for a change.  

    Once again Monday is meaningless. 

  116. Cuomo is on TV now, rally killer.