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Random Thoughts


Come on, be honest--would you really rather see a slow, slithery, sideways summer tape?

  • Feel good bathroom reading. But who does number two work for?

  • I don't disagree with the slowdown/deflation undercurrents, but I would offer that they've been "out there" for a mighty long time, masked by a lower dollar (-28%since 2002) and hidden under mountains of debt.

  • How long can that continue? I'm definitely not smart enough to know but I certainly respect the potential that "they" (global central banks) will keep the balls in the air for as long as humanly possible.

  • Thus, the question flickering behind my eyelids isn't "whether" there's a slowdown/recession/deflation--or worse--but how it will manifest and when it will creep into the collective consciousness.

  • The obvious answer is the world's biggest thermometer: equity prices. And given the Art Carnage in retail, homies, tech and such, it's no wonder that these big picture vibes are coming to life.

  • I would caution, however, that if we get a sharp rally (even at the expense of the dollar), the bears will be branded Cassandras and the bovine forest will once again echo with laughter. But that, my friends, doesn't make the storm clouds disappear---it simply covers us with the umbrella of perception.

  • Alright, so maybe those thoughts weren't so random. BUT, they're important as we try to wrassle with the collective conscious and the tapes they tickle.

  • Did you see how quickly the OSX tacked on 5% in just over one day (now testing the 200-day)? My sense is that the XAU (recently bounced on the 200-day) is in the throws of a similar stretch. I've got some trading exposure in the sector (trailing stops) and some longer-term stuff (put away).

  • Just an update as I (quickly) circle back to this morning's tell check. Centex the homebuilder--not to be confused with Mentos the freshmaker--is up 2.5% on really bad news. Texas Instruments--not to be confused with crude realities--is up 4% on in-line earnings.

  • What kind of wedding do you want? Not sure...just something plane.

  • Put an A.D.D. trader/writer in a sensory overload environment--and toss a ho-down for 220 (and counting) of your closest friends--and what do you get? A heckuva lotta hair follicles stacking up on my desk..

  • The most notable emerging element of the last hour has to be the dollar, which is up a quick 45 bips. That--in a vacuum--is asset class negative.

  • Other tells? Breadth is flatter than Fokker's first flame, the drillers, biotech, homies and semis continue to out-perform (albeit off their highs), S&P 1260 is the tetherball level (right there, right now), the brokers are sloppy (-1%) and these eyes are cryin' (these eyes have seen a lot of loves but they're never gonna see another one like I had with you).

  • " Safe Harbor rules restrict a company when buying back their own stock in what they can and can't do. For example, a company, when in the market buying stock, must cease one-half hour before the close. They can only be a certain percentage of the daily volume. These are set up to prevent a company from manipulating the stock. I think they should add a few rules. With historical amounts of stock being bought by companies and historical levels of stock being sold by insiders like executives, a disturbing pattern is evident to me. Is it coincidence that Microsoft (MSFT) announced buying back $40 billion of stock at a time when Mr. Gates will probably be selling a lot of his? Perhaps, but I think a prudent rule would be when an insider is in the market selling stock, the company itself must be out of the market buying it. Of course, I am not a lobbyist in Washington so I doubt they will listen to me." John Succo on today's Buzz.

  • Deflation? I had BMW pick up my car recently to give her a NY State inspection and, while they had it, I kicked the tires on a bid (it's got 17,000 miles on it and I rarely, if ever, use her). Talk about sticker shock! They bid me 34% of what I paid in 2001. Thirty-four percent. I told them that I'm a 35% bid and to reflect offers!

  • Come on, be honest--would you really rather see a slow, slithery, sideways summer tape?

  • "I just spoke with someone at Bloomberg about the unusual trades in HCA calls on July 14th and in today's NY Post, Zachery Kouwe wrote that an SEC investigation is underway for potential insider trading. This is in reference to my article, "It's Not What You Know, It's When You Know It." Jon "Doctor J" Najarian on today's (very active) Buzz.

  • Keep that OSX 200-day moving average on your radar as we're "doing work" there today.

  • R.P.
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