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Random Thoughts

By

...the dollar is hurtin' for certain and the collective perceptions of the USA aren't what they used to be.

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  • CRB 330-334 remains an uber-important double secret support zone for commodity land. If they break that shake, you'll start hearing the word "deflation" on a lot more lips.

  • We've seen a lot more option selling than option buying as we edge into earnings. As Professor Succo would say, that's a complacent 'theme.'

  • Outside of specific nibbles (such as JP Morgan puts under BKX 108), I'm typing with one hand and sitting on the other. This, despite my earlier sense that the S&P 200-day was fraught with fragility.

  • A view from afar? I can tell you, after a week abroad, that the dollar is hurtin' for certain and the collective perceptions of the USA aren't what they used to be. Not a shocker, given my long-standing and oft-communicated vibes, but worthy of a mention nonetheless.

  • Snaps to Minyan Matt Ford for the upcoming publication of "Threat, Intimidation and Student Financial Market Knowledge: An Empirical Study" in the Journal of Education for Business. I am a co-author of this academic study--which is sorta cool--but Matty deserves the group hug. He's doing great things with UMV so if you've got college age Minyans--or would like to include your school in our syndicate--please get involved. That's how we grow!

  • Talk about unfair compares! After a week in Spain, it became heavily apparent how out-of-shape I am. That's a recipe for a one month wagon, a more mindful diet and some "mind, body and spirit" mojo into MIM3! (Check a borrow on the Geese!)

  • Expect some "sell stops" below the June lows in the NDX. The tech heavy index is getting oversold (on a stochastic basis) but, as June taught us, that can last for a while. On the other hand, a slew of sectors--including the S&P, DJIA, XAU and DRG (of which I'm seeing size sell programs)--are "stochastically toppy."

  • Relax Spyder, and just say hi. These sorta lines don't really work..

  • If you think you're having a bad day, there are families of 136 people in India who wish that a P&L was their most pressing problem. Keep it in perspective, Minyans, and let's send some white light their way.

  • Mini-Minyan Mailbag: "It never ceases to amaze me how perceptions of alleged negative manipulation (short selling) are attacked viciously and patriotically, while accepted interventions (plunge protection, massive liquidity infusion via repos, etc.) are championed as benevolent. The repeal of the business cycle has become a national cause, probably because we have become so inundated with debt and deficits that we cannot envision any constriction in our lifestyle through mean reversion. This ignores any of the political or social implications likely to follow." Minyan Doctor Ron.

  • A little international flava at Minyans in the Mountains? True dat--we've got Minyans coming from as far away as Australia, Canada, Mexico, Sweden and Germany. Who woulda thunk it when we launched this event a few years ago in Crested Butte?

  • My brother Darryl...and my other brother Darryl!

  • Where's the party? In Debasement! Syria's central bank Governor Adib Mayaleh said it plans to end its currency peg to the dollar by year-end to reflect closer trade ties with Europe. He added that the Central Bank of Syriahas already converted half its foreign exchange reserves to euros. According to the CIA, Syria's reserves, including gold, totaled $4.1 bln at the end of '05.

  • Sticks and stones, Zidane, sticks and stones.

  • "Try as I might, I cannot find any technical justification for looking at Semis on the long side just yet. Recent DeMark 13 buy signals in TD-Sequential and TD-Combo for the SMH (semi HOLDRs), for example, produced only modest, at best, counter-trend reactions. Of course, that doesn't mean the SMH can't go higher, it just means I can't find anything to allow me to take a disciplined shot at the long side. In individual Semi names, however, there are some interesting setups to note: KLAC, AMAT, and MU have all three registered DeMark TD-Sequential buy signals." Pepe Depew on today's Buzz.

  • And finally, at the risk of getting a call from the office of redundancy office, Professor Succo scribed a Buzz this morning that bears repeating. You don't have to agree with it, we know, but we should ignore it at our own risk.

    The small picture...

    I think Fleck's earlier comments are right on; they echo mine from yesterday. Trading stocks all day there is definitely supply above fighting the still easy central bank credit still marginally finding its way in spurts into speculation. This tug of war will be resolved as fundamentals become clearer to the market. But a waning real estate market as the engine of cash and speculation is a shell of its former self.

    The big picture...

    Foreign investors are said to be interested in
    Midway Airport in Chicago . This, folks, is the only way the trade deficit will be partially settled: recycling all those dollars back into U.S. hard assets like land. But I still don't think that will alleviate the pressures on risky assets for the amount of dollars held by foreign private investors pales to what is held by foreign central banks, who have themselves been printing (selling credit) their currencies to buy dollars. The only way this will settle itself is for other central banks to give in and stop printing currency (like Japan lifting interest rates finally from zero...doesn't that smack of the ridiculous?). When this happens the trade and current account deficits will be washed away by a deflationary settlement of debts; not a pretty picture. It is a race to the bottom. Who will get there first?

  • I hope this finds you well, Minyans, and I hope it finds you mindful. We live in a screwy world and we need to stick together as we continue to stick it out. May peace be with you.


  • R.P.
Position in financials

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 todd@minyanville.com.

The information on this website solely reflects the analysis of or opinion about the performance of securities and financial markets by the writers whose articles appear on the site. The views expressed by the writers are not necessarily the views of Minyanville Media, Inc. or members of its management. Nothing contained on the website is intended to constitute a recommendation or advice addressed to an individual investor or category of investors to purchase, sell or hold any security, or to take any action with respect to the prospective movement of the securities markets or to solicit the purchase or sale of any security. Any investment decisions must be made by the reader either individually or in consultation with his or her investment professional. Minyanville writers and staff may trade or hold positions in securities that are discussed in articles appearing on the website. Writers of articles are required to disclose whether they have a position in any stock or fund discussed in an article, but are not permitted to disclose the size or direction of the position. Nothing on this website is intended to solicit business of any kind for a writer's business or fund. Minyanville management and staff as well as contributing writers will not respond to emails or other communications requesting investment advice.

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