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Sobriety Test


The clock s-l-o-w-l-y tick tocks towards the closing bell and its time to make some decisions. Don't forget, sports fans, the 800 pound gorilla that is Microsoft will have news after the bell and, baring any earth shattering events over the weekend, that should frame how the market opens on Monday morning. In the meantime, Alfreda E. Minx continues to shrug her shoulders and say "what, me worry?" It's certainly been a maddening market, but fear not my friends, this too shall pass.

Next week promises to be a barnburner as catalysts will be coming out of the woodwork from the word go. We'll kick off Monday with Soundview's technology conference and hear from the likes of ADBE, ACS, SAP, CA, BLS, PSFT, ADI, BEAS and ISSX. Not to be outdone, Goldman Sachs will be hosting a software party with EBAY, RATL, ITWO, DCTM, LGTO and PRSE (among others) chatting it up. On the economic front, Beeks will be releasing Factory orders (exp.-3.0%) at 10am.

The real fun begins on Election Tuesday and expectations are for an awfully close race. Conventional wisdom dictates that a clean sweep by the Republicans would bode well for the markets and investors will be paying close attention to the polls. Will somebody please go down to Florida and make sure they keep up this time? Microsoft will also be holding its annual meeting and the speculation is swirling on what, if anything, their gonna do with their 40 billion cash horde. Soundview's tech conference continues with FON, ASM, MU, CDN, STM, RFMD, CLS, MOT, NVLS EDS and JBL (among others) while SAP, THQI, ATVI, TTWO, SYMC, CHKP, MERQ, ADBE and VRSN will be holding court at Goldman Sachs's fete. We'll also get a read on ISM Non-manufacturing (exp.52) as the economic releases continue to filter out.

On Wednesday, we'll get the double whammy of Cisco earnings and Elmerfest and we'll finally find out what, if anything, the Fed has up its sleeve. Also, Lehman will also be kicking off its retail conference while Merrill Lynch joins the party with a Software conference of their own. Thursday we'll get the retail sales figures along with further economic data and a bunch of company sponsored meetings and, finally, Friday is the KLAC shareholder meeting. Note to self: please remember to leave next Friday night open for an exhaustive faceplant!

The polls are close to closing on our vote and I must say I'm surprised by the scope of responses. There were no less than 27 different sports mentioned and, from the looks of it, golf will take the top prize with race car driving a close second. Thank you for the fantastic response! I'm going to go toss my other hat back on and get our risk profile in shape for the closing bell. Use this weekend to refresh, recharge and've surely earned it. For my part, I'm gonna try and get the heck out of New York City and see some of the fall foliage in all it's glory. Autumn is by far my favorite season and I'm looking forward to some fresh air and deep breaths.

Have a peaceful weekend.
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