Posts Tagged ‘MBI’

Blackberry Bears Bulk Up On Long-Dated RIMM Put Options

Today’s tickers: RIMM, MBI, HRB & MET

RIMM - Research in Motion, Ltd. – Investors taking a long-term bearish stance on the Blackberry maker initiated put butterfly spreads on the stock today, which yield maximum benefits in the event that the stock is trading well beneath its current 52-week low by expiration in January 2012. Shares in the Ontario, Canada-based company fell as much as 2.8% during the session to touch down at an intraday low of $44.71. A number of analysts lowered their share price targets on RIMM in recent days as rival Apple continues to encroach on the company’s share of the smartphone market. Butterfly spreads on the stock suggest some options players expect RIMM’s losing streak to continue into next year. Investors purchased around 3,500 puts at the January 2012 $40 strike for an average premium of $3.77 each, sold 7,000 puts at the January 2012 $37.5 strike at an average premium of $2.83, and picked up 3,500 puts at the January 2012 $35 strike for an average premium of $2.10 apiece. Net premium paid to initiate the put ‘fly amounts to just $0.21 per contract. The parameters of the strategy imply an average breakeven share price of $39.79. Maximum potential profits of $2.29 per contract are available on the spread should shares in RIMM plunge 16.1% from the current price of $44.71 to settle at $37.50 at expiration in January. The strategy employed substantially reduced the overall cost of taking a long-term bearish view on the Blackberry provider. Investors long the butterfly spread paid an average of just $0.21 per contract, but could make up to $2.29 per contract if shares behave as they anticipate. The reward-to-risk ratio is a sweet 10.9-to-1 on this strategy. Options implied volatility on RIMM is up 7.4% as of 12:10pm in New York to stand at 46.35%.…
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Bullish Player Acts on Gymboree Corp. Speculation with Ratio Call Spread

 Today’s tickers: GYMB, EQIX, JPM, SLV, STI, MBI, EEM, SNP & GDX

GYMB - Gymboree Corp. – One options player populating the retailer of children’s clothing and accessories waited until the twilight of the final trading day of the week to initiate a bullish stance on the stock. Gymboree’s shares surged as much as 21.425% at the start of the session to touch an intraday high of $50.44 on speculation the firm may put itself up for sale. The rumors drove implied volatility on Gymboree up 20.10% to 48.52% this morning along with the price of the underlying shares and spurred demand for options. Shares as well as volatility cooled somewhat by late afternoon, with shares up 16.5% at $48.40 and volatility higher by 13.5% to 45.85%, as of 3:00 pm ET. The patient bullish player looked to the February 2011 contract to establish a ratio call spread, purchasing 1,050 calls at the Feb. 2011 $48 strike at a premium of $4.80 each, and selling 2,100 calls at the higher Feb. 2011 $55 strike for a premium of $1.85 a-pop. Net premium paid to initiate the spread reduces down to $1.10 per contract. Thus, the trader is poised to profit should GYMB’s shares rally 1.45% over the current price of $48.40 to surpass the effective breakeven price of $49.10 by February expiration day. Maximum potential profits of $5.90 per contract are available to the ratio-spreader if the retailer’s shares surge 13.6% to settle at $55.00 at expiration. The greater proportion of sold calls expose the trader to losses should Gymboree’s shares explode higher to exceed the effective upper breakeven price of $60.90 ahead of expiration day in February. Analysts at Susquehanna raised their share price target on the stock to $60.00 from $48.00 after the Wall Street Journal’s website said bankers were looking into the possibility that Gymboree could be sold to private equity.

EQIX - Equinix, Inc. – The provider of global data center services appeared on our ‘hot by options volume’ market scanner in…
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Weak Weekly Wrap-Up – Charting Uncertain Waters

I’m just doing a quick wrap-up this week because, surprisingly, it MIGHT be time for a new Buy List!

I had said to Members on Cinco de Mayo, in our 5% Rule Review, that if we broke below 1,155 we would retrace all the way to 1,100 with our 5% Rule resistance points around 1,100 at 1,155, 1,114, 1,100, 1,073 and 1,045.   We actually spiked as low as 1,066 on Thursday but finished the week at a very sad 1,110 as we watched for that "weak bounce" zone to be broken all day.  This does not bode technically well for the markets next week but I told Members we would have to give the markets a pass for the day.  Based on the uncertainty of the weekend, we can’t expect a lot of capital commitments ahead of the EU decision.  After all, we’re in cash – why shouldn’t other smart funds be too?

When I predicted we’d hit 1,000 on Wednesday, I did not think it would be on Thursday!  The markets are now negative for the year and the S&P has spiked almost to the Feb low of 1,044 (and our lowest close was 1,056).  That’s right, these 5% Rule numbers are the SAME ones we used back then and it’s the same series we used to measure our winter run at the end of last year.  We expect a bounce here, hopefully at least a test of 1,155 on a relief rally if Greece is "fixed" yet again on Monday but we’re not going to be too impressed until we’re over that line. 

Still that means it’s time to at least lay out a new Watch List, which is the prelude to a Buy List – giving us a list of stocks we’d like to get into at lower prices.  Our last Member Watch List was back in December and by Feb 6th we had our famous Buy List, which we triggered at Dow 10,058 for a very successful run through March 18th ("Bye Bye Buy List!"), when we closed 2/3 of the positions and we have since cashed out the rest as I got more and more worried about the rally, finally calling for all cash last week.  

Speaking of last week, for those of you who say I don’t pick enough straight stocks – I listed 33 short trade ideas from my unofficial "Sell Listlast Friday (4/30) when the Dow was way up at 11,167…
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Bears Out in Full Force as Market Takes a Nose-Dive

Today’s tickers: XRT, MBI, CAT, XHB, FLS, PCS & TWC

XRT – SPDR S&P Retail ETF – It’s not surprising that we are seeing bearish trading patterns emerge on the XRT, an exchange-traded fund designed to mirror the performance of the S&P Retail Select Industry Index, with shares of the fund trading 5.30% lower as of 3:20 pm (ET) to stand at $40.25. One long-term pessimistic individual initiated a three-legged bearish options combination play on the XRT using both call and put options. It looks like the investor partially financed the purchase of a debit put spread by selling twice as many out-of-the-money call options by volume. The trader purchased 5,000 puts at the September $40 strike for an average premium of $2.42 apiece, and sold the same number of puts at the lower September $34 strike for a premium of $0.84 each. Finally, the investor reduced the premium outlay required to establish the transaction by selling 10,000 calls at the September $48 strike for a premium of $0.73 per contract. The net cost of the options combination play is reduced to just $0.12 per contract. The investor responsible for the pessimistic play makes money if shares of the underlying fund slip beneath the effective breakeven point at $39.08. Maximum potential profits of $5.88 per contract are available to the trader should shares of the retail fund plummet 15.5% from the current price to breach $34.00 by September expiration. Options implied volatility on the XRT is up 15% to 34.80% with roughly 40 minutes remaining in the trading day.

MBI – MBIA Inc. – Investors who earlier in the session scooped up large numbers of put options on the insurance company are likely pleased as punch given the subsequent 10.4% decline in MBIA’s share price to $8.81 as of 3:25 pm (ET). Bearish investors purchased approximately 50,000 puts at the June $7.0 strike for an average premium of $0.75 apiece at around 11:40 am (ET) this morning when shares of the underlying stock were trading at $9.30 each. The decline in share price since this morning coupled with the 25.2% increase in the overall reading of options implied volatility on the stock to 136.22% inflated premium on the June $7.0 strike puts, which are currently up 200% on the day to reflect an asking price of $0.90 per contract. Put buyers in this case are poised to amass profits should…
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Wheeeeeeekly Wrap-Up

Wheeee!  That was fun – let’s do it again!

There is nothing more fun than a nice, big dip in the roller coaster that you are prepared for and nothing more terrifying than a sudden, unexpected drop you were not prepared for (think air pockets on planes).  I know my incessant harping on fundamentals gets annoying and makes me somewhat of a party pooper at market tops but think of my commentary as that "clack, clack, clack" sound you hear when a roller coaster is climbing to the top of the tracks – the sound lets you know there’s a big drop coming and the more clacks you hear – the bigger the dip is likely to be

In fact, much like a roller-coaster, most of our well-prepared members were disappointed that we didn’t get a BIGGER dip on Friday but we’ve learned not to be greedy on the bear side and to quickly take those profits on our short-term plays while we let our long-term disaster hedges run wild, waiting patiently for the big score.  By the way, it’s not that we’re perma-bears – far from it, when Cramer, Adami, Finerman, John AND Peter Najarian were telling you to crawl into a bunker and hide your head in the sand a year ago – I was the one yelling BUYBUYBUY while our hugely successful Buy List, which is the bulk of our virtual portfolios, has been all bullish since Feb 8th.   Just because we think a rally is BS, doesn’t mean we don’t participate in it!

As a fundamentalist, I believe there is a market "truth" a real value that can be placed on stocks and indexes based on reality, not hype and, when the MSM hype stampedes the herd and takes the market (or an individual stock) too far one way or the other – we simply step in and take advantage of it.  It’s not complicated but it takes a little bit more work than the average "Lightning Round" participant is used to so PSW is not for everybody – this is our JOB, not our hobby, but boy is it fun when we get it right!

Despite the sell-off this week, we still finished up over 11,000 on the Dow but poor 1,200 on the S&P couldn’t hold and Nas 2,500 was merely a brief flirtation.  The NYSE fell all the way to 7,550, down 200 from Thursday’s
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Buy List – Time for a Fresh Batch? (Members Only)

I am one reluctant bull!

I am still trying to be bullish, I am trying to get enthusiastic about this rally and it's been 3 weeks since I went to mainly cash rather than leave the majority of our Buy List on the table.  The Dow was at 10,850 that day and I didn't think we'd see the top of 11,000 for more than a day but now we've been up here for 2 weeks and yesterday we had strong(ish) volume on a strong up day and I'm still having trouble believing it BUT – believe it we must as long as our upside levels hold.  

Those levels are now: Dow 11,000, S&P 1,200, Nas 2,500, NYSE 7,700 and Russell 720.

We had a nice, relaxing holiday but now we have hard work ahead as I think the investing environment is littered with land mines – ready to blow up in our face if we take any mis-steps.  This bull has horns and we were gored by daring to go bearish in our $100K Virtual Portfolio but our Buy List is all bull and, hopefully, no crap as we try to make safe plays out of the finest companies.  

Ideally, our Buy List plays are about finding bargains.  We may love AAPL, but they are not on sale.  Earning season will hopefully be a great time to do some bargain hunting so this list will be a work in progress but for today we're just going to review our remaining open plays from the last list and also I would like Members to please use the comment section on this post to suggest companies we should be looking at.  Who do you think is trading way too cheaply?  We especially love dividend payers, of course and I'll be looking for companies that service the top 10%, not the bottom 90% – who still look pretty screwed to me and, from yesterday's news, it seems like the top 10% is down to the top 8% but it doesn't seem to bother the markets so we won't dwell on the implications until we're below 5% and, of course, our goal is to be in the top 5% when it all hits the fan…

After having really good timing on our Feb 8th entries, March 18th seemed like a good time to take the money and run and we shut down 2/3 of our Buy List postions.  Let's do a
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Bye Bye Buy List!

Oh, I have tried!

I have tried to be bullish, I have tried to get enthusiastic about this rally but I have been reviewing these picks for a few days and looking at the market, the charts, the sentiment, reading the news and studying the fundamentals and I'm OUT!  Oh, I'll be back, we'll set up a new, aggressive $100K Virtual Portfolio next week for some fun shorter-terrm plays (still keeping the conservative one for the full year) to take full advantage of this insanity but it's going to be mainly cash through the end of the month as I do not trust this rally one bit and it will be so nice to head into the easter holiday with lots of cash on the sidelines

We hit a perfect entry on Feb 8th, in our last round, and the market is up almost 9% since that day and I'm not expecting another 9% in the next 6 weeks so it's a very good time to take a break.  We were able to roll and enjoy these trades since Christmas and we will be revisiting some, maybe even keeping a few but, on the whole, I want to do what I often counsel members to do, which is follow our simple two-step process to maximizing your profits in a market rally:

  • Step 1) Take Money
  • Step 2) Run

There – isn't that simple?  Keep in mind that we LOVE all of these stocks so we'll be back in them if they go on sale and, perhaps, even if they don't and the market looks stronger through April earnings.  Meanwhile, keep in mind that these are 6-week profits so 20% is A LOT for generally conservative plays.  Not much else to talk about – let's just see how many of these suckers are worth keeping (noted in green):

AET (12/21 – $34.04, 1/9 – $32.70, 1/31 – $29.97, 3/18 – $33.24) They could not have done better for us, staying right in range and giving us 4 excellent sales but health care is passing this weekend and that's too wild for us to stick with.  Our last batch is right on target:

  • Apr $33 calls sold for $2.40, now .40 – up 83%
  • Apr $30 puts sold for $1.50, now .02 - up 99%
  • 2012 $25/35 bull call


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Weekend Wipe-Out, the Second Wave!

Another week another 100 points lower

Yep, that's all it was, we lost all of 100 points more than last week, when we fell from 10,725 to 10,172 (553 points) and this week we dropped from Friday's Dow close of 10,172 all the way down to 10,067 yet you would think the world had come to an end to hear the media and the traders freaking out.  I'm not going to try to explain it, I can't.  Maybe it's because going into last week we were very bearish but, starting on the 22nd, we let ourselves finally get a little more bullish AND THE MARKET BETRAYED US!

How could the market not zoom right back up?  It always zooms right back up, doesn't it?  As I said a week ago Friday: "Boy, when sentiment shifts – it REALLY shifts!"  My closing comment on Friday the 22nd was "Back to cash but leaving disaster hedges, which are looking great now as this is shaping up to be some disaster" and our weekend "Global Chart Review" showed us to be at some very key inflection points, letting us go well prepared into this week: 

Manic Monday Market Movement

My Jets lost on Sunday so I was not in the best of moods on Monday.  My outlook that morning was: "We still have our disaster hedges in case things get worse but, on the whole, we’re expecting a 1% bounce in the very least off our 5% lines (anything less will be a bad sign)."  We were pretty much at the 5% rule on Friday's close so we focused on the bounce we wanted to achieve in order to get more bullish. 

I noted that the levels we were looking for were not exactly 1% retraces (see post for reasons) and our target retraces were:  Dow 10,300, S&P 1,105, Nasdaq 2,225, NYSE 7,100 and Russell 625.  What were the highs for the week on those indexes?  Dow 10,310 (+10), S&P 1,103 (-2), Nasdaq 2,227 (+2), NYSE 7,098 (-2) and Russell 621 (-4).  So that's a net of +4 points out of  21,355 points worth of predictions on the retrace, accuracy to within .019% - not a bad showing for our patented 5% rule.     

Please, under NO circumstances subscribe to our daily newsletter, where you would have this kind of information every morning and…
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The Buy List – Q1 2010 (Members Only)

 

Well we finally hit our levels!

Fundamentally, I still don't buy this rally but, technically, we could go up and up from here.  We discussed in chat yesterday how we may be in a pattern similar to 2003-7 where we came out of the dot com crash and 9/11, which took the market lower than it should have and then government stimulus took us higher than we should have been.  Sure it all ended badly but there was a really good ride up in between.  HOWERVER, 2004, which is about where we would be now, was a choppy and downtrending year.  That is not a problem for our buy/write strategy as long as we keep our heads and scale into our positions.

Obviously we can't rely on patterns to simply keep repeating themselves.  We could have another terrorist attack, we could have more stimulus or maybe both in our future but, until we see the patten broken, we can play for a similar move.  Our buy/write strategy is ideal for this as it's a conservative play that gives us 15-20% downside protection.  Combine this with our usual strategy to scale into positons along with some sensible disaster hedges and we can build a nice, bullish virtual portfolio for 2010.  Keep in mind we don't fear the upside with buy/writes as our "worst case" there is we get called away with a nice profit.  

I put up our latest Watch List on Dec 22nd, following through from our bullish lists of September 6thOctober 8th and Nov 24th.  These are the bullish plays that form the bulk of our virtual portfolios and that sometimes gets lost in our weekly short-term trading.  It was a lot like shooting fish in a barrel, picking winners since September (we had our last Buy List on July 11th our first since the bottom in March, which was followed by the more conservatively mixed $100K Virtual Portfolio that we used from April through July, when we were worried the market would be choppy (it was).  As always, our active lists are found under the Virtual Portfolio Tab near the top of our pages - always check there for recent updates.

We did…
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Ford Call Options Gone Wild as Bulls Populate January 2011 Contract

Today’s tickers: F, IPG, MBI, DAL, XLF, XHB, CROX, GME, BBBY & NVTL

F – Ford Motor Co. – Yesterday we reported on a short strangle play, which implied the automaker’s shares would likely remain within the realm of $10.00 to $12.00 for the next six months to expiration in June 2010. Today we observed bullish options activity in the January 2011 contract, which points to significantly higher shares for Ford in the next twelve months. The stock rallied again today, gaining 2% to reach a new 52-week high of $11.60 with just under 30 minutes remaining in the session. Bullish indications came in the form of a call spread and plain-vanilla call buying strategies. It looks like one investor purchased a large chunk of 50,000 calls at the January 2011 $17.50 strike for an average of $0.58 apiece. The trader responsible for the transaction benefits from this position only if Ford’s shares explode 56% over the current price to surpass the breakeven point at $18.08 by next January. The parameters of the call spread also implies a significant increase in shares of the motor company by 2011, but the nature of the spread limits upside profit potential, whereas the plain-vanilla call buyer’s profits are potentially limitless. The investor responsible for the spread selected the more conservative January 2011 $15 strike to purchase approximately 6,000 calls for an average premium of $1.06 per contract. The other half of the debit spread involved the sale of the same number of calls at the higher January 2011 $22.50 strike for about $0.20 each. The net cost of the bullish play amounts to $0.86 per contract and positions the investor to accrue profits above the breakeven price of $15.86. Maximum potential profits of $6.64 per contract are available to the trader if Ford’s shares rally a whopping 94% from the current value to $22.50 by expiration in January of 2011.

IPG – Interpublic Group of Companies, Inc. – A long straddle strategy initiated on the advertising and marketing company implies one investor expects greater volatility in the price of the underlying through expiration in February. The inherent nature of the long straddle suggests shares of IPG may swing dramatically in the next few weeks. Interpublic’s shares are currently off 2.5% to stand at $7.27 in afternoon trading. The straddle-player purchased about 2,000 puts at the February $7.50 strike for an average premium of…
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Phil's Favorites

Big Pharma has failed: the antibiotic pipeline needs to be taken under public ownership

 

Big Pharma has failed: the antibiotic pipeline needs to be taken under public ownership

A.G. Sanders with penicillin extraction equipment. Image reproduced with permission of the Sir William Dunn School of Pathology, University of Oxford, Author provided

Courtesy of Claas Kirchhelle, University of Oxford; Adam Roberts, Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine, and Andrew Singer, ...



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Zero Hedge

Aramco Scraps US And London IPO Roadshows Amid Too Many "Uncertainties" 

Courtesy of ZeroHedge View original post here.

Saudi Aramco has withdrawn from IPO roadshows in the US and London after it's likely they don't want to disclose oil reserve totals to Western banks and regulators. 

Meanwhile, it's becoming a giant circle-jerk for the Saudis, the IPO is expected to list on the Tadawul exchange, while the Saudi Arabian Monetary Authority (SAMA) is expected to double the amount it would lend out to domestic "buyers" for IPO purchases, reported Bloomberg.  ...



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Kimble Charting Solutions

Dow Megaphone Breakout Continues, As It Tests 77-Year Breakout Level

Courtesy of Chris Kimble

I’ve heard many times over the past 39-years I’ve been in the financial services business that charts have memories? Is it true they do? Is it possible that they have very long-term memories?

This theory looks to be put to a big test by the chart above, which looks at the Dow Jones Industrial Index since 1910.

The Dow has spent the majority of the past 77-years, inside of rising channel (1). While inside of this channel, it looks to have created two very long-term megaphone patterns.

It broke above the first megaphone pattern in the early 1980s, where ...



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Lee's Free Thinking

NY Department of Welfare Announces Increased Subsidies for Primary Dealers, Thank God!

 

NY Department of Welfare Announces Increased Subsidies for Primary Dealers, Thank God!

Courtesy of , Wall Street Examiner

Here’s today’s press release (11/14/19) from the NY Fed verbatim. They’ve announced that they will be making special holiday welfare payments to the Primary Dealers this Christmas season. I have highlighted the relevant text.

The Open Market Trading Desk (the Desk) at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York has released the schedule of repurchase agreement (repo)...



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The Technical Traders

VIX Warns Of Imminent Market Correction

Courtesy of Technical Traders

The VIX is warning that a market peak may be setting up in the global markets and that investors should be cautious of the extremely low price in the VIX. These extremely low prices in the VIX are typically followed by some type of increased volatility in the markets.

The US Federal Reserve continues to push an easy money policy and has recently begun acquiring more dept allowing a deeper move towards a Quantitative Easing stance. This move, along with investor confidence in the US markets, has prompted early warning signs that the market has reached near extreme levels/peaks. 

Vix Value Drops Before Monthly Expiration

When the VIX falls to levels below 12~13, this typically v...



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Insider Scoop

HP Rejects Xerox's Buyout Offer: Experts Debate What's Next

Courtesy of Benzinga

HP Inc. (NYSE: HPQ) rejected Xerox Holdings Corp (NYSE: XRX)'s $33-billion takeout offer Sunday, and experts are divided on what will occur next in the ongoing saga between two tech...



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Biotech

Why telling people with diabetes to use Walmart insulin can be dangerous advice

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

 

Why telling people with diabetes to use Walmart insulin can be dangerous advice

A vial of insulin. Prices for the drug, crucial for those with diabetes, have soared in recent years. Oleksandr Nagaiets/Shutterstock.com

Courtesy of Jeffrey Bennett, Vanderbilt University

About 7.4 million people ...



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Chart School

Dow Jones cycle update and are we there yet?

Courtesy of Read the Ticker

Today the Dow and the SP500 are making new all time highs. However all long and strong bull markets end on a new all time high. Today no one knows how many new all time highs are to go, maybe 1 or 100+ more to go, who knows! So are we there yet?

readtheticker.com combine market tools from Richard Wyckoff, Jim Hurst and William Gann to understand and forecast price action. In concept terms (in order), demand and supply, market cycles, and time to price analysis. 

Cycle are excellent to understand the wider picture, after all markets do not move in a straight line and bear markets do follow bull markets. 



CHART 1: The Dow Jones Industrial average with the 900 period cycle.

A) Red Cycle:...

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Digital Currencies

Is Bitcoin a Macro Asset?

 

Is Bitcoin a Macro Asset?

Courtesy of 

As part of Coindesk’s popup podcast series centered around today’s Invest conference, I answered a few questions for Nolan Bauerly about Bitcoin from a wealth management perspective. I decided in December of 2017 that investing directly into crypto currencies was unnecessary and not a good use of a portfolio’s allocation slots. I remain in this posture today but I am openminded about how this may change in the future.

You can listen to this short exchange below:

...



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Mapping The Market

How IPOs Are Priced

Via Jean Luc 

Funny but probably true:

...

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Members' Corner

Despacito - How to Make Money the Old-Fashioned Way - SLOWLY!

Are you ready to retire?  

For most people, the purpose of investing is to build up enough wealth to allow you to retire.  In general, that's usually enough money to reliably generate a year's worth of your average income, each year into your retirement so that that, plus you Social Security, should be enough to pay your bills without having to draw down on your principle.

Unfortunately, as the last decade has shown us, we can't count on bonds to pay us more than 3% and the average return from the stock market over the past 20 years has been erratic - to say the least - with 4 negative years (2000, 2001, 2002 and 2008) and 14 positives, though mostly in the 10% range on the positives.  A string of losses like we had from 2000-02 could easily wipe out a decades worth of gains.

Still, the stock market has been better over the last 10 (7%) an...



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Promotions

Free eBook - "My Top Strategies for 2017"

 

 

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

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

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

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

Some other great content in this free eBook includes:

 

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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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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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