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Freaky Friday Jump Ball


As go the financials, so goes the tape.

  • "Toddo, Do you really believe in mercury retrograde? I know I have had my head up my arse all month and I'm getting pretty sick of the view. If I could go back thru all of my trading career, from 1976 to today, I would guarantee that there would be a marked downturn in my P&L from 2-3 days before MR, to a couple of days before going direct. Hope all is well with you. Best, Minyan Pete"

    Minyan Pete,

    As my good friend Jeff Saut likes to say, "You betcha!" Call me superstitious, call me psychosomatic, but don't call me during Mercury Retrograde. I'm a big believer that the human mind can't possibly comprehend all of the powers in the universe and energy morphs in ways that we can't imagine. I don't defer to stuff like this but, through experience, I've learned to respect it. Alas, it's over tomorrow and for that, we should all have a little extra pep in our step.

  • Speaking of a certain serendipity, Google was added to the S&P and the bulls are gigglin' to the tune of ten percent. Minyan Dennis asked me about this a few weeks ago, as he knew I faded Yahoo! when it was added way back when. As I told him, that was a different world and a different set-up, so it's apples and oranges. Yahoo! was uber-extended during a manic euphoria, whereas Google is (was?) twisty oversold while the broader market is basing above recent acne support. So, while much of this demand is artificial and nothing has changed with regard to Google fundies, I'm not laying into this particular issue. It's too crowded and there are better edges in my universe.

  • In other March Madness, what the heck happened to Gonzaga last night? Adam Morrison and the rest of the That 70's Show cast were in cruise control when the Nyquil kicked in and I awoke to find the Bruins in the elite eight? Man, a foul here and a roll there woulda found me atop the leaderboard. But, much like trading, there are no wouldas, couldas or shouldas in Hoopsville and we awake today to find Minyan Joe Trenkamp and Minyan Miti Kalirao sharing the lead in the Minyanville Brackets. Whoever cuts the critter nets will win a snazzy collection of MV prizes and those who don't? They'll have the right (but not the obligation) to make a donation to the Ruby Peck Foundation so that children can enter April with a smile.

  • I've been vibing through a real-time trading try in Intel. Yesterday afternoon, as discussed, we saw a meaty number cut by Dain Rauscher and, initially, the stock soaked up the supply. I snuck out early for an afternoon mindmeld and, sure 'nuff, Boo tugged at the rug a bit. My long side shnitzel was predicated on a few things but the fabric of any trade, as we know, is discipline. I've set my stop slightly below the 2004 double bottom ($19.65)--allowing for a bit of a wiggle--and if it triggers, I'll hit a bid and move on without asking questions or looking back.

  • Has XBOX boxing really become the only exercise in my life?

  • Alcatel is eyeing Lucent, eh? These companies collectively lost $43,000,000,000 between 2001 and 2003 and are trading at less than they did a decade ago. So, will economies of scale kick in and make the sum of the parts greater than the whole? I've never been accused of being an analyst but my sense is that the pricing pressures in the industry will continue. That doesn't mean that the stock can't rally but this marriage certainly isn't a panacea.

  • The bigger "positive," perhaps, is the continued surge in M&A activity. Watch the brokers for clues in this regard. As go the financials, so goes the tape.

  • And finally, some perspective for ye faithful on a Freaky Friday...

    Toddo, Tom wanted me to send along his many thanks for your kind thoughts. He is feeling much better and will be coming home on Sunday. Unfortunately, his friend's sister (42 mother of a 14 and 7 yr old), Robin, was diagnosed on Tuesday with terminal cancer that spread from Colon to Lungs and Liver. They are giving her 6-8 mos- I am hoping with a little thought we can extend that deadline infinitely longer. Rough week Brother. When it gets all into perspective like this, I am grateful that I am able to do what I do, even on bad days in the market like this. Minyan Jeff.

    Minyan Jeff,
    Man, that's tough---I'm sorry, my friend. Hang in there, as Ruby would say, this too shall pass. We'll vibe some more white light to Robin, with hopes that her journey is peaceful and filled with love.

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