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Strange Range


Have a great weekend!


Going where the wind don't blow so strange
Maybe on some high cold mountain range
Lost one round but the price wasn't anything
Knife in a back and more of the same

(Grateful Dead)

The flicking ticks and ticking tocks continue (albeit slowly) as we edge through another week of freaky fun. For those of you who haven't noticed, the lazy haze of summer is in full swing and traders have already begun sneaking to the beach. The critters, meanwhile, have been dutifully organizing their agendas for next week's blurry flurry of earning's, Elmer and expiration. For if they know anything, it's that strategy is our strength and not disaster.

Before we get into the preparatory work, I would like to quickly address an email from an old school Minyan. He asks why I haven't been more aggressive with the costumes and was curious if they're being phased out. I told him, as I'll tell you, that the recent appendage abstinence is a function of a few things. One, I haven't exactly had a hot hand and trading 101 dictates that when that happens, taking a step back and a deep breath is prudent and smart. Two, I've adapted to the market and in lieu of scaling into short side exposure (as a function of my view), I've opted to "put away" some defined risk dollar kind downsides (autumn paper) that I'm not gonna touch. This gives me my desired exposure if (when) the Minx poops out without having to assume a tremendous amount of risk. Finally, as I've been trading actively, my risk profile is dynamic and often changes throughout the day.

I've made no secret of my view (prediction: pain) but I am respectful of the structural elements (liquidity), NASDAQ acne (technical breakouts) and momentum. In addition, we've got a ton of information due out next week and that'll help shape the collective psychology. The conditional elements of a market mess are in place--a giddy and crowded bull camp, widespread complacency (VIX), multiyear dandruff (S&P), derivative smoke, accounting implications, geopolitical risk (yes)--but as we've learned repeatedly, that stuff won't matter until it does.

I will admit that the brazen proclamations in the press irk me as they're representing all that's right without so much as a mention of what could go wrong. I don't buy it (literary) but I'm sure there's plenty of peeps in middle America who have taken the bait. As someone who fielded thousands of unfortunate emails these past few years, I sincerely hope and pray that they've learned from the past.

As for today's tape, General Electric (GE:NYSE) has taken a turn for the worse and that's muted the collective mood. As discussed, the Monday morning quarterback will toss us Bank of America (BAC:NYSE), Citigroup (C:NYSE) and Fannie Mae (FNM:NYSE) and there's bound to be portfolio manicuring into the final bell. It's entirely too early to pen an equity epitaph but I'll ask you to stay on your toes. One more hour of lucidity, team, and then we can turn it off and tune it out.

Before I go, I would like the entire Minyanship to take a moment and send white light to Jackson Reamer in Denver, Colorado. Our community is a family and when one of ours needs some positive energy, the least we can do if fire the vibe his way. Also, I would like to thank the Minyanville professors for an insane week of content. Their work is educational, informative, relevant and representative of everything that's right in our business.

That's about it, my friends, and as you find your way through a weekend of sun and fun, try and do something Joel along the way. A little effort can go a long way and it can often be very rewarding.

Fare ye well and may peace be with you.

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