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Buzz Bits: Dow, Nasdaq Continue Up


Your daily Buzz & Banter highlights...


Editor's Note: This is a small sample of the content available on the Buzz and Banter.

Satraplatin companies might move... - David Miller - 2:12 PM

In my Friday Roundup, I mention how hedge funds will pay doctors to get a heads up on ASCO presentations. Much of this happens at the AACR meeting next week and I expect one focus to be on Satraplatin.

Overall survival data for the chemotherapy drug Satrapaltin might be at ASCO. I am hearing it is statistically significant, but not much different than the 10-day advantage seen in progression-free survival.

I've asked if the SPA governing the trial has a minimum threshold of clinical efficacy for approval, but nobody seems to know. Satraplatin should be OK in the prostate cancer market even with a 10-day survival benefit, since it will be approved for 5th line use behind Taxotere primarily for relieving pain. I say "OK" under the assumption you are not expecting it to be anything more than around $100-200 mln in worldwide sales.

Pharmion (PHRM), GPC Biotech (GPCB), and Spectrum Pharma (SPPI) are the troika of companies tied to this drug.

Nor'easters and other Fine Print - Jeff Macke - 2:06 PM

Greeting from New York where, frankly, I've got a bone to pick with both CNBC and Minyanville for not telling me I was going to be exposed to Nor'easters. I live in Freaking New Jersey (the official name of the state) which, last I checked, isn't Maine. I'm only about 30% adjusted to being around all these New Yorkers and now I've got a gale bearing down on me. It's enough to make a man long for an earthquake.

In other news...

  • From where I'm sitting Apple (APPL) is asking devotees of the stock to chug a very tall glass of Job's Brand Kool-Aid when they blame "shifting engineers" for a delay in the release of their operating system. Apple isn't Steve Jobs and Woz taping stuff together in a garage anymore; releasing a phone and an operating system within the same quarter should be doable to a company of their size.

  • Speaking of consumption, McDonald's (MCD) is looking more unstoppable than ever. The real burger King was upgraded at CIBC today after upping its forecast for 1Q, citing robust sales and a 1-penny currency benefit.

    What didn't Micky D's do? It didn't blame the weather, gas prices or a shortage of Happy Meal development engineers. It just went, sold a ton of food and upped its estimates. That's what a good company hitting on all cylinders does, Minyans.

Take that GOOG!!! - Fil Zucchi - 1:20 PM

Soleil Securities is out with a pretty scathing note on Google's (GOOG) upcoming quarterly release. There are two aspects to the piece. First, they view the expectations for Q/Q revenue growth as way to high, specially in light of the fact that 4Q is usually GOOG's strongest quarter. I tend to agree with this point. The bar is set high and stock price kinda reflects it.

Second, it suggests that longer term GOOG's best days are behind it. There I disagree. Yes, GOOG's easiest pickings may be behind it, but betting against GOOG at this stage of the internet era IMHO is tantamount to having bet against Microsoft (MSFT) after the release of the second version of Windows.

Quarter to quarter GOOG will surprise and disappoint and its stock will jump and dive accordingly, but betting against the leader in access to the technology that will drive the world for decades, particularly as this leader sits on billions of free cash, seems like a tough way to try to make money.

Position in GOOG

What to do with a weaker dollar? - Sally Limantour - 11:59 AM

The chatter is getting loud with regards to a weaker dollar. The IMF chief Rato said yesterday, "the dollar has room to fall." At the same time the IMF director hailed the ECB as a "goldilocks environment." Now the German Exporter Association is calling for 1.4000 euro. Next we will see covers of magazines (again) with the drooping dollar or a smiling euro. It may be getting overdone in the near term.

That said I'm staying the course here and the way I have played the currency markets has been as a long term play. Since 2000 I have been buying CDs denominated in the commodity currencies and the euro and add to this twice a year. There is no way I could have held positions like that in the futures market as I would have been stopped out and worn out. When good trading set ups occur for a shorter term play in the futures I will take them and have at times been long the dollar and this requires thinking in two distinct time frames. So how does the dollar look now? Weak, though I went long from 81850 with a break even stop, but will move the stop up to manage the trade. Reasons? Part technical, part perceptual.

I use Market Profile data for my short term trading. This is a graphical organization of price and time and it organizes data so a trader can see where prices are being accepted or rejected. The 81850 area was an important level and it showed a high level of trade being facilitated there. Once it "rejected" it, the market rallied.

Postion in Euros, Canadian Dollar, Australian dollar, New Zealand dollar, US Dollar futures

No positions in stocks mentioned.

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