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Hollow Man

By

May peace be with you!

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Well blow your whistle freight train
Carry me far on down the track
Well I'm going away, I'm leaving today
I'm goin', but I ain't comin' back.


(Grateful Dead)


Has anyone seen my Tuesday checklist? Let's see...

Sporadic systems failures? Check! All day long and rotating between two (redundant) servers.

Flummoxation? Check! Everyone was leaning long for the inflows that got stuffed like a Raider running back.

Path of maximum frustration? Check! Google (GOOG:NASD) trapped alotta salivating teenagers with its fake acne.

Deja Vu in Elmersville? Check! "Potentially excessive risk taking" and "irrational exuberance" seem awfully similar.

Super-sizing? Check! 5% moves are commonplace today.


I'm sure that there was more to my list but the incessant brown-outs have me looking over my right shoulder and eager to post this column. There's no debatin' the ugly action and we saw some "hopers" dump exposure into the FOMC minutes. Collins just asked me if this qualified as capitulation and I offered that there is no such thing as capitulation with teenage vols. That doesn't mean we can't Snapper but it won't be a function of despair. Indeed, with sentiment and vols where they are, Boo could make a case that this smacks more of denial than panic.

That's not to say that I necessarily saw this coming. In the interest of being forthright--and despite my bearish big picture bent--I sheepishly admit I flunked the flank (pun intended). I naturally assumed that Hoofy would bully the bears who were running scared and pad his gains to start the year. The result was a lopsided lean caught everyone looking the long way. What does it say when bears are conditioned to assume upside room? That's right--danger Will Robinson!

We ready for tomorrow's hump with the NDX sittin' on the 50-day (1568), the VXO edgin' to the 200-day (15.34), the dollar at the 50-day (DXY 82.70), crude hoppin' 5% at a clip, the BKX below our inflection point (104) and every one of my subsectors in the red. For some reason, the word "reversion" keeps popping into my head as we stare in the mirror of 2004. Up is down, right is left, cats chasing dogs and Collins is eating healthy. Bizarro!

As I said earlier, I've got technical paranoia today so I'm gonna hop and post this puppy before I lose it (and my mind). Take a deep breath and remember that the definition of an investment should never be a trade gone awry. It's January 4th and there is a heckuva lotta navigating left to do this year so don't let emotion dictate your risk profile. Anybody can close their eyes and swing for the fences but it takes patience and discipline to stay in the game. Easier said than done, I know, but all we can do is the best we can do.

Fare ye well into the bell and have a peaceful evening.

R.P.
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