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Fish Head Follies


The semi's are my best shot!


Don't ask me how I got here, I don't know
I'm just a passenger on a train that's moving slow
Rolling through the desert because it's real
I know too well how the old town feels

(The Radiators)

It's Fat Tuesday and you know what that means--carte blanche on the calories baby! If you haven't sunk your teeth into our famously fantastic cookies, honor thy taste buds (they're worth it!). Of course, I had no choice but to indulge myself--my systems crashed on the opening and challenged my mojo. How the heck does the computer know to power down at the point of maximum frustration. Fokker!

The early action in the semiconductors is giving some bears pause with their paws. XLNX and CY had some bullish commentary this morning and the trading chatter is beginning to focus on Intel's mid-quarter update on Thursday. While I've got no edge, per se, on what Intel is gonna say, I have been stiffing around the trading community to get a handle on the overall posture. Coming into yesterday, the long side was seemingly crowded and the index got spanked 4%. As it settles back towards SOX 280 (support), I'm trying to get a fresh feel. In the interest of full disclosure, I've been trading around some SMH puts and, as of this post, I'm still long some.

The traction in that complex is lending a bid to the N's and they're once again outperforming their old school cousins. The financials caught my eye out of the gate as the Goldman's of the world came under immediate pressure and I continue to key off that group. I'm unsure if frisky Buffett's comments have anything to do with their relative weakness but they surely don't help.

A check of the morning breadth shows losers taggin' winners 8:5 on the NYSE and 3:2 on the Nazz. The S&P "higher lows" of last week reside at 828 and then 820 (they'll be minor support). In the NDX, there is tranched support from 970-980. If the market treads here for a bit I wouldn't be shocked to see an attempted lift (particularly with the semis trading dry). However, I've been using rallies as an opportunity to nibble on some defined risk puts and I still feel that's prudent. As always, just one traders humble opinion.

I hope this finds you well.
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Todd Harrison is the founder and Chief Executive Officer of Minyanville. Prior to his current role, Mr. Harrison was President and head trader at a $400 million dollar New York-based hedge fund. Todd welcomes your comments and/or feedback at

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