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Teddy Bear


May peace be with you!


"It is not the critic that counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles or the doer of deeds could have them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the Arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs and comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but he who does actually strive to do the deed; who knows the great devotion; who spends himself in a worthy cause, who at the best, knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails while daring greatly, knows that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls, who know neither victory nor defeat."

--Theodore Roosevelt,

So there I was, sitting in with the new Puglisi & Co. research team (talented bunch!), listening intently as they mapped out the financial landscape. The overall tone was pretty constructive and, truth be told, I enjoyed the banter. You always want to "see" both sides of every trade and, not surprisingly, there's plenty of food for thought on the buy side. Heck, after the move we've seen, there better be a whole meal!

As the thinking goes, the lower dollar bolstered first quarter earnings and, as it stands, will do the same for our current period. That perception has been the back door bullet for the bountiful bovine and given them the moxie to buy any and every dip aggressively. While we failed to address the issue of pent up demand (due to the war), conventional wisdom dictates a continued steadiness on the earning's front. That thesis will be put to the test in the coming weeks as preannouncement period is upon us.

After the multiyear drubbing they've received, the bulls were quick to latch onto any potential stability. The fundies (perception is reality) spurred psychology and swung the pendulum hard to the right. That momentum triggered technical breakouts which, in turn, re-spurred the collective psychology into a performance anxiety feeding fest. Add a dose of short covering and some structural elements and voila! All is suddenly well in the world.

I "see" Hoofy's argument and the underlying tenor of the market supports his view. While I respect the action, however, I can't endorse crew from Matador City. Not with the long side so crowded, not with the anxiety so manic, not with the tape spiking higher and not with historical guides (which don't "matter" anymore) so extended. Perhaps that's why the ascent can continue (not everyone believes), but it's never been my style to climb aboard a crowded train if I don't agree with the destination.

In any event, I realize I'm a simple pawn in this game and force myself to remain open-minded in my approach. Nobody is smarter than the market and if I've learned anything over the course of my career, it's to remain humble lest the Minx will do it for you. Could Elmer "re-inflate" a mini-bubble? Sure, and while it will undoubtedly prolong the inevitable consequences we're due to face, he's got the ammo to do it.

In whisper circles, there's chatter of sizable "negative gamma" in the marketplace that supposedly gets dealers shorter with each uptick. While that's certainly not confirmed, it would help explain some of the parabolic action as well as the impetus for the macro hedges "gunning" for offers. I'll tell ya, cookie, this is a vicious business sometimes!

Looking ahead, Intel (INTC:Nasdaq) will paint the tape tonight and Beeks will take center stage manana with the unemployment report (exp. 6.1%), change in nonfarm payrolls (exp. -30k), change in manufacturing payrolls (exp. -48k) and average weekly hours (exp. 34.2). In addition, the Smith Barney semi fete continues with MRVL, SSTI, ACLS, CHPC, ATMI, ISIL, SMTC, TXN, LLTC and AMKR.

I'm gonna sign off and ready myself for the fun and games. Keep an eye on those levels (S&P 980, NDX 1210, DJIA 9000) as the closest discernable inflection point. More importantly, make decisions that will allow you to sleep well such that you can focus on the important stuff once the closing bell tolls. The last thing you wanna do is spend all night thinking about what you do all day.

I'll leave you with a closing thought that I picked up while at a spiritual refocusing in 'Zona. The average mind thinks 60,000 thoughts per day, of which 40,000 are recurring. If you factor in how much time you spend thinking about what you have to do and planning for the future, how much time is left for you to enjoy the here and now? Just a little mindful thinking as we turn the corner and head into the home stretch.

Have a peaceful night.
position in spx

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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