Posts Tagged ‘jobless claims’

Initial Jobless Claims Jump while Philly Fed Signals Economic Contraction

Initial Jobless Claims Jump while Philly Fed Signals Economic Contraction

Courtesy of Rom Badilla, at Bondsquawk.com

Falling Businessman

The Philadelphia Federal Reserve released its manufacturing survey for August, which suggests economic contraction and may lead the Federal Reserve to promote additional stimulus measures.  The Philadelphia Federal Reserve Outlook survey or simply “Philly Fed” for August plummets to a negative reading of 7.7 versus economists’ surveys of +7.0.  This marks the third consecutive decline after the outlook survey peaked in May at 21.40.

Behind the headlines, components that represent economic growth were especially weak.  Specifically, New Orders dropped further into negative territory to -7.1 from a prior month’s reading of -4.3.  Inventories fell from +4.5 in July to -11.6 while the Number of Employees component dropped from 4.0 to an August reading of -2.7.

Inflation expectations should remain subdued and keep bond yields in check as price pressures fall, judging by some of the Philly Fed components.  Prices Paid dropped from +13.1 in July to +11.8.  In addition, the Prices Received component continues to drive deeper into negative territory.  The Prices Received component fell to -12.5 following prints of -6.5 and -8.4 in June and July, respectively.

The Philadelphia Fed numbers carry significant weight since the index is heavily correlated to the ISM manufacturing index and the index of industrial production, which both measure the health of U.S. economic activity.  ISM Manufacturing should it fall below 50 in the coming months may lead the Federal Reserve to act in providing stimulus measures via Quantitative Easing.

The number of people in the U.S. filing for employment benefits increased last week according to the Department of Labor. Initial Jobless Claims for the week ending August 14 jumped to 500k people.  The number of people who recently became unemployed and are now accessing government benefits was revised upward in the previous week by four thousand to 488k.  The increase, which the highest reading since November of 2009, highlights the beginning of deterioration of the employment landscape in the last few weeks as economists were expecting a reading of 478k.  Furthermore, the 4-week moving average, which is used to smooth out volatility to establish a better reading of trends, continues to inch higher to 482,500 people and is on the higher end of the recent range of 450-500k that has been established since last November.  With this in mind, the number is…
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THE ADS BUSINESS CONDITIONS INDEX PLUMMETS

THE ADS BUSINESS CONDITIONS INDEX PLUMMETS

Courtesy of The Pragmatic Capitalist 

The latest reading on the ADS Business Conditions Index from the Philly Fed shows a dramatic turn for the worse in recent weeks.  This is consistent with several other leading indicators.  Details on the index can be found below:

aruoba THE ADS BUSINESS CONDITIONS INDEX PLUMMETS

The Aruoba-Diebold-Scotti business conditions index is designed to track real business conditions at high frequency. Its underlying economic indicators (weekly initial jobless claims; monthly payroll employment, industrial production, personal income less transfer payments, manufacturing and trade sales; and quarterly real GDP) blend high- and low-frequency information and stock and flow data. Both the ADS index and this web page are updated as data on the index’s underlying components are released.

The average value of the ADS index is zero. Progressively bigger positive values indicate progressively better-than-average conditions, whereas progressively more negative values indicate progressively worse-than-average conditions. The ADS index may be used to compare business conditions at different times. A value of -3.0, for example, would indicate business conditions significantly worse than at any time in either the 1990-91 or the 2001 recession, during which the ADS index never dropped below -2.0.

The vertical lines on the figure provide information as to which indicators are available for which dates. For dates to the left of the left line, the ADS index is based on observed data for all six underlying indicators. For dates between the left and right lines, the ADS index is based on at least two monthly indicators (typically employment and industrial production) and initial jobless claims. For dates to the right of the right line, the ADS index is based on initial jobless claims and possibly one monthly indicator. 


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Employment Fragile, Big Improvement Expected Tomorrow

Employment Fragile, Big Improvement Expected Tomorrow

Courtesy of Bondsquawk

The market will get a reading on the pulse of the economy as both the Unemployment Rate and the Nonfarm Payrolls number will be released tomorrow. Expectations for the unemployment rate, which is a household survey, is for 9.8 percent for May after a 9.9 percent reading in April. The Nonfarm Payrolls, which counts the number of paid employees working part-time or full-time in the nation’s business and government establishments, is expected to show an increase of 520,000 according to consensus surveys after an increase of 290,000 in April.

A big surprise could be in store as BNP Paribas increased their Nonfarm Payroll forecast from 515,000 to 645,000.

In a briefing today on Census operations the Director of the Census Bureau indicated that they had paid about 568 Census workers in May. Given that they had hired 138k workers between January and April, that suggests a number for Census hiring in May of around 430k in Friday’s report. That is larger than the 300k we were assuming and would imply a total nonfarm payroll number of 645k including 220k on private payrolls and a reduction of 5k in state and local government workers.

Today, Automatic Data Processing reported that U.S. companies added jobs but less than expected. The employment increase for May according to ADP was 55,000 versus surveys of 70,000. While the increase was less than expected, the prior month’s numbers were revised upward to 65,000 from the initial reading of 32,000.

The number of Americans seeking jobless benefits last week fell by 10,000 to 453,000, according to a data release by the Labor Department. Economists surveyed projected claims would drop to 455,000, according to the median forecast. Here’s a Bloomberg TV video report detailing today’s numbers. 

 


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10 LEADING ECONOMIC INDICATORS THAT ARE ROLLING OVER

10 LEADING ECONOMIC INDICATORS THAT ARE ROLLING OVER

Boston train wreck

Courtesy of The Pragmatic Capitalist

Via David Rosenberg at Gluskin Sheff:

1. The ECRI weekly leading index growth rate peaked on October 9, 2009 (at 28.54%; now at 9.0%).

2. The Conference Board’s LEI peaked at 109.4 in March (109.3 in April).

3. ISM orders/inventory ratio peaked at 1.805 in August 2009 (1.33 in April).

4. University of Michigan consumer expectations peaked on September 2009 (at 73.5) – now at 65.3 in May.

5. The UofM index of big-ticket consumer purchases peaked in February-March at 136; is down to 129 as of May.

6. Jobless claims bottomed at 442k on March 11.  They had peaked at 651k on March 28, 2009.  But they are back at 471k, which is where they were back on December 19, 2009 so the improvement has stalled out.  Not only that, but to keep 472k into perspective, claims were at 453k the week after 9/11 (and the economy back then was eight months into recession).  Yes, yes, employment has been rising of late; however, keep in mind that nonfarm payrolls are in the index of coincident indicators; claims are in the index of leading indicators.  Please let’s not drive looking through the rear window.

7. Single-family building permits peaked at 542k (annual rate) in March (were 484k in April).

8. Mortgage purchase applications peaked on April 30th at 291.3 and now are at a 13-year low of 192.1 even though mortgage rates have come down 20 basis points since the nearby high.

9. Auto production peaked at 7.8 million units (seasonally adjusted annual rate) in January – was at 7.2 million in April.

10. Electrical utility output was down 0.1% YoY as of May 15th.  Could be another early sign that the production revival is behind us.

Source: Gluskin Sheff 


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Weekly Unemployment Claims at 442,000, 4-Week Moving Average drops to 453,750

Weekly Unemployment Claims at 442,000, 4-Week Moving Average drops to 453,750

Courtesy of Mish 

Please consider the Unemployment Weekly Claims Report for March 25, 2010.

In the week ending March 20, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 442,000, a decrease of 14,000 from the previous week’s revised figure of 456,000. The 4-week moving average was 453,750, a decrease of 11,000 from the previous week’s revised average of 464,750.

Unemployment Claims

The weekly claims numbers are volatile so it’s best to focus on the trend in the 4-week moving average.

4-Week Moving Average of Initial Claims

The 4-week moving average is still near the peak results of the last two recessions. It’s important to note those are raw number, not population adjusted. Nonetheless, the numbers do indicate broad weakness.

4-Week Moving Average of Initial Claims Since 2007

This was a good report in that claims have started to drop again, the first time since December 5, 2009. This is a step in the right direction, if it holds. On the other hand, to be consistent with an economy adding jobs, the number needs to get to the 400,000 level.

Also note that it takes 100,000+ jobs a month for unemployment to drop (barring changes in the participation rate).

At some point, employers will be as lean as they can get (and still stay in business). Yet, that does not mean businesses are about to go on a big hiring boom. Indeed, unless consumer spending picks up, they won’t.

Mike "Mish" Shedlock


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Weekly Unemployment Claims Spike To 496,000; Will Reality Soon Set In?

Weekly Unemployment Claims Spike To 496,000; Will Reality Soon Set In?

Courtesy of Mish

Falling Businessman

Yesterday the market rallied the moment Bernanke started yapping to Congress about holding interest rates low for a considerable length of time. Pray tell what did he say that anyone should not have expected?

Perhaps today the reality of "why" Bernanke feels compelled to hold rates low will set in. Following news that unemployment claims spiked to 496,000 the S&P 500 gapped down 15 points. Is there more where that comes from?

With that backdrop, let’s take a look at the report.

Inquiring minds are investigating the Unemployment Weekly Claims Report for February 25, 2010.

In the week ending Feb. 20, the advance figure for seasonally adjusted initial claims was 496,000, an increase of 22,000 from the previous week’s revised figure of 474,000. The 4-week moving average was 473,750, an increase of 6,000 from the previous week’s revised average of 467,750.

Weekly Unemployment Claims 

In reference to Feb 6, last week I said "After last week’s unexpected huge dip, this week sports an unexpected huge rise. That’s why it’s best to focus on the trend in the 4-week moving average."

Today I suggest that perhaps that February 6th "green shoot" is an outlier. It is the only thing keeping that 4 week moving average as low as it is.

4-Week Moving Average of Initial Claims

4-Week Moving Average of Initial Claims Detail

The 4-week moving average of claims for the last three weeks is above where it was on December 12, 2009 and just slightly better than it was on December 5, 2009. By this measure, the recovery has stalled.

Is Bad News Finally Bad News?

The day is still early. Bad news buyers may still save the day.

At some point however, reality will eventually set in. Without jobs, all this happy talk about the impending recovery, and all of Bernanke’s yapping about low rates, will not satisfy the market. It is going to take both jobs and an increase in consumer spending to lift the economy.

From where I sit, neither is coming.

Right now, the dollar is firm, treasuries have a bid, the stock market is down, commodities are down, and gold and the $HUI are up. That action suits me just fine.

Mike "Mish" Shedlock 


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THE DRUNKEN WALK TAKES ANOTHER SUDDEN TURN

THE DRUNKEN WALK TAKES ANOTHER SUDDEN TURN

Drunk Man Sleeping After Party

Courtesy of The Pragmatic Capitalist 

The drunk is having a particularly difficult time finding his way home this time. The market has now swung in opposing 1% directions on three consecutive days – a sure sign of near total confusion in the equity markets. Today’s swing comes courtesy of declining sentiment and weak jobs – the never ending thorn in this markets side.

Jobless claims rocketed higher to 496K and there were no administrative excuses behind this jump. Analysts had expected a reading of 460K. Continuing claims also climbed to 4.61MM. This doesn’t bode well for the monthly jobs report.

Reports of weak weather were already contributing to a potentially poor jobs figure, but this data all but seals the deal. The recovery on Main Street has been delayed for yet another month. Anyone who is big on chart reading does not like the recent uptick in claims. It certainly looks like the trend is higher to sideways from here.

showimage3 THE DRUNKEN WALK TAKES ANOTHER SUDDEN TURN

In other news, durable goods posted a gain of 0.3%, but was well below anlayst estimates of 1.3%.  The durable goods data is notoriously volatile so it’s difficult to gauge too much from this data.  The news is a bit mixed as transportation goods posted strong orders while non-transport related goods posted weak orders.  The overall trend remains higher for now, however.

In other other news, the currency markets were once again shaken up as problems in Greece appear to be never ending.  Ratings agencies are threatening downgrades of Greece as austerity looks like the country’s final resort.  The Euro remains the worst house in a very bad neighborhood.

So where do we stand on this market?  Uncertainty remains the name of the game and uncertainty is rarely good for a market.  As earnings season comes to a close I fully expect the uncertainty level to pick it up a notch.  There is very little positive news for investors to hang their hats on.  For now, the macro trends of global rate increases, weak jobs, sovereign debt, regulation and the…
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THOUGHTS ON THIS MORNING’S DATA

THOUGHTS ON THIS MORNING’S DATA

Courtesy of The Pragmatic Capitalist

  • Jobless claims came in much better than expected this morning at 440K.  The 43K decline is being attributed to a filing “backlog” at the Labor Department.  Econoday has more details:

“The administrative backlog from the New Year holidays was supposed to have already cleared up. But not so fast! The Labor Department attributes a stunning 43,000 drop in initial claims to 440,000 for the Feb. 6 week — not to economic improvement — but to the final end of the backlog, a backlog that inflated levels in prior weeks. In only a very partial offset, the prior week was revised 3,000 higher to 483,000. Given the haze of the backlog effect, the four-week average offers the best handle on the data, falling for the first time in four weeks, though only by 1,000 to 468,500 and little changed from mid-December before the backlogs started to build.”

showimage.asp  THOUGHTS ON THIS MORNINGS DATA

Continuing claims also declined substantially to 4.53MM.  If the “backlog” is the true cause of the recent spike in claims then it can be assumed that the positive downward trend in claims is likely to reassert itself in the coming weeks and months.

  • In more important news, EU leaders are not formulating a plan as of now that will back Greece.  The Euro is down 1% in dollars as I write.   As we mentioned last week, there appears to be little in terms of positive news that will come out of this for the Euro.  If they back Greece currency speculators will assume that Portugal, Ireland, Italy and Spain are next in line for handouts.  If they don’t back Greece the contagion worries will continue to roil the currency.  The fact of the matter is, the Eurozone is a debt-laden economy and the currency weakness is not unjustified.  This makes it very difficult to formulate an investment plan that doesn’t involve a higher dollar and the end of the risk trade – for now.

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THREE THINGS I THINK I THINK

Pragcap turns more bearish in the face of proposed rules for reforming Wall Street. My highlights. – Ilene

THREE THINGS I THINK I THINK

pragmatic capitalist Courtesy of The Pragmatic Capitalist

  • President Obama isn’t taking the Scott Brown victory lightly.  He has just announced some stunning measures to curb bank risk taking.  The news is taking Wall Street (myself included) by surprise as stocks tank on the news.  The measures appear to be an early move back towards the Glass-Steagall Act.  Specifically, Obama said no banks will own hedge funds or private equity funds.  The details are few at this time, but that is stunning, must sell stock news.  We continue to believe the secular bear market is with us, and such policy action creates a sense of uncertainty that is simply staggering.   I would use strength in the coming days and weeks of earnings season to reduce risk until some of these clouds clear.  Stocks cannot and will not rise substantially when the government appears to be on the attack against Wall Street and that appears to be the only response from the White House after the Brown win.  While this is likely a very positive measure in the long-run, it has the potential to cause a great deal of near-term volatility.  The combination of uncertainty in the Eurozone, China’s liquidity restraints, and this new policy reform in the United States creates a three pronged reason to avoid owning stocks in the near-term.  While I hate to sell into downturns it’s best to take the meager gains since the beginning of the year and look for a better entry point.  Uncertainty is a markets worst friend and there is a growing abundance.
  • Earnings continue to come in quite robust.  Goldman Sachs crushed analysts estimates and Ebay reported a solid quarter last night.  Unlike previous quarters, investors are largely ignoring the earnings season as the above three macro themes dominate the headlines.  A continuing concern is a lack of strong revenue growth.  Corporations are still largely relying on cost cuts to generate their better than expected earnings growth.
  • This morning’s data is compounding matters.  Jobless claims spiked to 482K vs expectations of 440K and the Philly Fed surprised to the downside.  A Labor Department analyst


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The Transition to Risk

The Transition to Risk

Courtesy of Charles Hugh Smith Of Two Minds

high angle view of traffic driving on a freeway in snowfall

The hidden transition to ever-higher systemic risk was the major story of 2009: nothing’s been fixed, and the risks of systemic failure are rising every day.

On this last day of 2009, I want to address what I call the transition to risk.

One analogy is the way that the risks of suffering a fatal heart attack rise in a completely hidden way. The body doesn’t signal the slow accumulation of fatty deposits in arteries; the process is silent. Nor is there any conscious awareness that arteries are hardening. The accretion of risk is slow, steady, invisible--until it’s too late.

Some transitions to risk are highly visible. If you’re driving on winding mountain roads and suddenly enter a thick fog bank which cuts your visibility to a few feet, the risks posed by continuing at high speed skyrocket.

The prudent person slows down or even pulls well off the road; the imprudent person ends up a statistic.

Then there are situations in which risk is building but someone with an asymmetric stake in the game convinces everyone the risk remains low to serve their own needs.

The boat is leaking, the winds are rising, but the skipper’s profits require completion of the passage. So he reassures the nervous passengers that everything is fine, the weather is actually improving, and the ship’s pumps can easily handle the leaks.

In an economy with a mainstream media controlled by a handful of corporations and a government financial policy in the hands of a few secretive manipulators, this "reassurance" comes in the form of blatant propaganda.

Here is an example from today’s "news": (a.k.a. disinformation)

Jobless claims fall unexpectedly as layoffs ease.

The number of jobless workers continuing to claim benefits, meanwhile, dropped by 57,000 to 4.9 million, also better than the increase that analysts expected. This supports the "headline" propaganda: "Jobless claims fall unexpectedly as layoffs ease."

But the propaganda/disinformation masks the reality that it’s actually 10 million people who are receiving benefits, and that number increased by 200,000:

But the so-called continuing claims do not include millions of people that have used up the regular 26 weeks of benefits typically provided by states, and are receiving extended benefits for up to 73 additional weeks, paid for by the federal government.


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Zero Hedge

"The Central Banker Asked Me What It All Meant"

Courtesy of ZeroHedge. View original post here.

Submitted by Eric Peters of One River Asset Management, authored by Lindsay Politi

Triumph of the Machines

We were his last stop. The central banker had toured NY area investment shops. He described a fascinating trip; so much happening in algorithmic trading. The only thing keeping it from completely revolutionizing investing is getting enough data.

“You say that like it’s a minor issue,” I countered, “but just about every financial crisis in my career was because something happened that wasn’t in the historical data set. The last was caused in no small pa...



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Phil's Favorites

Who are the Sikhs and what are their beliefs?

 

Who are the Sikhs and what are their beliefs?

New Jersey Attorney General Gurbir Grewal. AP Photo/Julio Cortez

Courtesy of Simran Jeet Singh, New York University

New Jersey’s first Sikh attorney general, Gurbir Singh Grewal, was a target of disparaging remarks recently. Two radio hosts commented on Grewal’s Sikh identity and repeatedly referred to him as “turban man.” When called out on the offensiveness of their comments, one of them stated, “Listen, and if that offends you, then don’t wear the turban and maybe I’ll remember your name.”

Listeners, ...



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Biotech

Approval of first 'RNA interference' drug - why the excitement?

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

 

Approval of first ‘RNA interference’ drug – why the excitement?

Single strands of ribonucleic acid (RNA) are now being used to treat disease. By nobeastsofierce / shutterstock.com

Courtesy of Thomas Schmittgen, University of Florida

Small interfering RNA sounds like something from a science fiction novel rather than a revolutionary type of medicine. But this odd-sounding new drug of...



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Chart School

The anatomy of the recent gold sell off

Courtesy of Read the Ticker.

For the arrow to fly, the bow must be pulled back. Gold is in a pullback at the moment.


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Main chart in video.


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Sure fundamentals do matter, and so does market timing (entry, stops and exit), here at readtheticker.com we believe a combination of Gann Angles, ...

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Digital Currencies

Bitcoin's rollercoaster ride reflects the biggest issue facing cryptocurrencies: regulation

 

Bitcoin's rollercoaster ride reflects the biggest issue facing cryptocurrencies: regulation

Shutterstock

Courtesy of Brian Lucey, Trinity College Dublin and Shaen Corbet, Dublin City University

The rollercoaster of cryptocurrency pricing is on the downward slope again. Bitcoin has fallen by a quarter in the past month, with other...



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ValueWalk

The Top 10 Wildest Campaigns Of 2018: Starboard's Stake In Symantec

By ActivistInsight. Originally published at ValueWalk.

This week’s column is a continuation of our 10 “wildest campaigns” of 2018. Find the first part here.

Q2 hedge fund letters, conference, scoops etc

Free-Photos / PixabayTop 10 Wildest Campaigns Of 2018

5. How often does an activist win a proxy contest without support from either of the two main proxy advisory firms? (...



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Kimble Charting Solutions

Small Caps attempting 20-year breakout, says Joe Friday

Courtesy of Chris Kimble.

CLICK ON CHART TO ENLARGE

The Russell 2000 trend remains solidly higher, as it has created a series of higher lows and higher highs inside of rising channel (1) over the past 25-years.

Small caps have been an upside leader in 2018, as they are very near all-time highs.

We applied Fibonacci extension levels to the 2007 highs and 2009 lows at each (2).

Joe Friday Just The Facts Ma’am- Small caps are attempting a dual breakout at (3). 

This is a price point that small-cap bulls would LOVE to see strength and a breakout take place, as monthly momentum is lofty.

...

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Insider Scoop

Walmart Posts Standout Quarter, But Raymond James Downgrades On Flipkart Costs

Courtesy of Benzinga.

Related WMT 10 Biggest Price Target Changes For Friday Headlights On Deere: Mixed Results As Company Cites H...

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Members' Corner

There Are 3 Main Theories That Explain Trump's Approach to Putin and Russia-Which One Makes the Most Sense?

What do you think?

Thom Hartmann suggests that the "Manchurian Candidate theory" is the least likely explanation for Trump's pro-Russia behavior in "There Are 3 Main Theories That Explain Trump’s Approach to Putin and Russia—Which One Makes the Most Sense?" (below).  disagrees and suggests that Putin probably has "the goods" on Trump in "Trump’s Plot Against America". (To be fair, Hartmann acknowledges that his three theories are not mutually exclusive.) Jonathan Chait argues ...



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Mapping The Market

Mistakes were Made. (And, Yes, by Me.)

Via Jean-Luc:

Famed investor reflecting on his mistakes:

Mistakes were Made. (And, Yes, by Me.)

One that stands out for me:

Instead of focusing on how value factors in general did in identifying attractive stocks, I rushed to proclaim price-to-sales the winner. That was, until it wasn’t. I guess there’s a reason for the proclamation “The king is dead, long live the king” when a monarchy changes hands. As we continued to update the book, price-to-sales was no longer the “best” single value factor, replaced by others, depending upon the time frames examined. I had also become a lot more sophisticated in my analysis—thanks to criticism of my earlier work—and realized that everything, including factors, moves in and out of favor, depending upon the market environment. I also realized...



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OpTrader

Swing trading portfolio - week of September 11th, 2017

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

 

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

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

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

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



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Promotions

Free eBook - "My Top Strategies for 2017"

 

 

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

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

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All About Trends

Mid-Day Update

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

Click here for the full report.




To learn more, sign up for David's free newsletter and receive the free report from All About Trends - "How To Outperform 90% Of Wall Street With Just $500 A Week." Tell David PSW sent you. - Ilene...

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About Phil:

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

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About Ilene:

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

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