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Random Thoughts


As long as you've got the right (defined) risk management in place, refreshing the eyes sometimes helps.

  • Man Oh Man, when it gets nutty in the 'Ville, it gets NUTTY in the 'Ville. Hurricane Macke® hit MVHQ this morning and, in conjunction with three conference calls, forty-eight instant messages and triple digit emails, put the "A" in "A.D.D." Hey, we're pretty excited to have the Wolf back on the East Coast. Jack Nicholson can eat his heart out!

    As a guy who spends the better part of his life hidden behind eight screens, I can tell ya that taking a step out of the fray--as I'm forced to do at times these days--adds a dose of perspective. Heck, I've spent countless hours staring at flicking ticks and I've gotten lost in the sauce more times than I can remember. As long as you've got the right (defined) risk management in place, refreshing the eyes sometimes helps.

    For instance, I finally shed Macke this morning (think Earl Campell in his day) to spy the tape with fresh eyes. The order of assimilation was:

    1) The financials (holding steady)

    2) The breadth (2:1 negative)

    3) The dollar (-35 bips, my first blush is "asset class bullish")

    4) The CRB (down another percent--man, if the weaker dollar can't help this complex...)

    5) The homies (down some but above Hoofy's "what me worry?" zone)

    6) Vols (VXO is up 7%--and it's got a long way to go)

    7) Macke (there he is again--there's nothing "Lone" about that Wolf.)

    8) Our Levels (particularly XBD 220)

    9) Europe and the emerging markets (flat) and

    10) The clock (I'm just a Pomboy, I get no sympathy)

  • What Levels? Glad you asked...
    • NDX 1630. It's the 200-day and it's not foolin' around.
    • XBD 220. Remember XAU 150--the acne that was Oxycuted? That's how important this level is for the brokers and, by extension, the tape.
    • S&P 1280-1330. I know, you can drive a large mouse through that zone but, as the former level is the 50- and 200- day moving average and the other is technical heaven's door, we'll be wise to watch 'em.
    • BKX 114. Piggies. All-time highs. Need we say more?
    • TRAN 4400-4465. This Twilight Zone, where the trannies currently are, would make Rod Sterling twitch.
    • XAU 130. July lows and Cliff's Branch.
    • CRB 310. Autumn 2005 lows. Every journey begins with a single step.

  • Speaking of Pomboys, Tomboys and Pommegranite Margaritas...

    John Succo, 11:57 AM

    "Once again the "why" of things may get in the way of the "what" of things. Courtesy of Stephanie Pomboy's following statement to my firm, we see the "why" of retail sales:

    "Looking through the retail sales report the thing that really stands out is the increase in 'grocery stores.' Of the $560 mln increase in Non Auto retail, the food component has accounted for $296 mln (with grocery stores =$200 mln of that). Over the last three months, food has accounted for 33% of the increase in total retail sales and 53% of the increase in NonAuto retail sales."

    The trend is clear: non-discretionary is becoming a greater proportion of total retail sales."

And Now, our regularly scheduled Randoms...

  • America's Worst Nightmare? Not O-Dog...the true Menace II Society would be asset class deflation (CRB -85 bips, -12% in the last month) and dollar devaluation (DXY -35 bips, -29% since 2002).

  • I know that's a toss away thought with the averages oh-so-close to multiyear highs but remember that risk management is the common thread of consistent rewards.

  • Enough Ducks? Are you ducking kidding me? It's for the Special Olympics and the big race is tonight. How bout one more MINYANVILLE SIZE PUSH to help the kids who face struggles we can't comprehend?

  • While this time may indeed be different, this missive is food for thought as chatter of Goldilocks and the scared bears makes the rounds.

  • If the Raiders had any sorta fighting chance this year, I woulda insisted that Macke kept my, er, his house in the Bay Area through January.

  • Trade, Meat, don't force.

  • I've gotta early appointment to get my ticker checked tomorrow so I'll likely hit the 'Ville around 10:00 AM. As such, lest my opener isn't there by the opening, it's not a matter of slackage.

  • Thanks, and enjoy the breeze into yet another expiration.


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Position in energy, metals, 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

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