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Randoms: Trading on the Edge of a Marble

By

When in doubt, sit it out.

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Editor's Note: The following was posted in real time on our premium Buzz & Banter (click for a free trial). It's being shared here for the benefit of the Minyanville community. See also Friend of the Devil and Shake, Rattle and Roll.


Trading on the edge of a marble. - 12:35 pm

  • While you're supposed to cut your sinners and ride your winners, I've taken my trade in Wells Fargo (WFC) into today's 25% lift (I'm "there" in tertiary exposure).

  • Are you ready for some MADNESS? The Beast of the East kicks off tomorrow, paving the way to the single greatest sporting event of the year. We will, as per tradition, be hosting Minyan March Madness once again in the 'Ville.

  • While cause for pause remains (Google (GOOG), Goldman (GS), breadth), Hoofy continues to hold his ground (BKX +7%). I continue to lean long although I've yet to buy back the "overage" sold into the initial pop (always honest).

  • Yes, I'm looking forward to the time when I no longer have this trading crack (FAS) on my pristine sheets. It was--and is--a pure vehicle but there are other, more legitimate, ways to play the tape.

  • The Dead reunion hits MSG on April 25th? Sometimes there's nothing left to do but smile, smile, smile...

  • In lieu of The Jerk and Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, I opted for Religulous and Body of Lies as my weekend Calgon plays.

  • The answer I really wanna know is: What if this bid is the M2M bid? Things that make you go hmmm indeed.

  • As always, I hope this finds you chillin' like Dylan.


Answers I Really Wanna Know... - 1:15 pm

  • Why do loud chewers bother me so much?

  • Will you look back in 10% (either way) and say, "I knew it!"?

  • Who was it that said that bear markets are littered with false hope and empty promises?

  • Have you checked out our newest subscription product, OptionSmith by Steve Smith?

  • Y'all see Google (GOOG) trading with a 2-handle?

  • Along with the action in Goldman (GS) and Morgan (MS)?

  • As market breadth can't get out of it' own way (2:1 negative)?

  • Are you in a position to use price to your advantage?

  • Why aren't those crispy noodles from Chinese chicken salads featured more often in other meals?

  • Did someone really take my legs out while I was going up for a game winning lay-up Saturday? (Yes.)


Wake Up, Little Snoozie, Wake Up! - 2:20 pm

So here we are in the midst of National Napping Day and the Minx is daring us to take our eyes off the tape. I'll tell ya, this is one of those sessions where clarity will be obvious with the benefit of hindsight.

Rally, and Hoofy will finger the financials and say, "As go the piggies, so goes the poke." Indeed, with the BKX holding 5% gains, the bull has a point.

Fail, and Boo will eye clues such as Google (GOOG) (-4%), Goldman (GS) (lethargic all session) and market breadth (still 2:1 negative).

And to think, the binary unknown still looms large in our midst.

Here's what I'm thinkin' as we try to tie it all together:

  • When in doubt, sit it out or, at the very least, trade in between. That means something different to each Minyan but for me--feeling the heat with the pre-market futures--it begged unwinding some risk into the early morning hot popper. I'm now in a better position to add lower and feed the ducks higher, should they quack.

  • I say--and did--that despite the "gun to head" sense that the piggies will indeed lead the poke higher.

  • Nestled somewhere in the back of my mind is the truism that debt destruction is a necessary--yet ultimately healthy--evil yet we, the people, are being encouraged to take down more debt, not less.

  • The winners in the new world? How bout the online brokers as self-directed individuals migrate from their financial advisers?

  • We're having our first MUR meeting this afternoon to map next steps for the Minyanville Underground Railroad. Thanks so very much for being patient as we continue to build the 'Ville in a manner consistent with our corporate integrity.

  • As always, I hope this finds you well.


Dink, Dink, Dink, Dink... - 3:35 pm

Hey look on the bright side... when all else fails, we've always got Jack Bauer! It's a sad summary of my social life when I literally count the hours until 24. It's not a man crush or a bromance... it's just good, old fashioned drama (as if we don't get enough of that during the trading day).

In that spirit, the following thoughts take place between 3:00 PM and 4:00 PM:

  • On the one hand, alotta folks (who weren't paying attention) recently told me they've finally gone "all cash." On the other, it feels like alotta pundits are suddenly trying to call a bottom. Are we having fun yet?

  • My net long exposure is less than where it was this morning due to sales in the financials, General Electric (GE) (25% of the position left) and the SSO (50% of the position left). I've yet to pull the trigger on buying back exposure but I reserve that right if we close fugly.

  • Shhh... did you hear that? There it goes again! It's the sound of tension and anxiety, which is seemingly percolating around the street. As I just told my buddy, "breathe, please, lucidity is necessary now more than ever."

  • On that note--inhale, exhale--I'm gonna shift my eyes from this screen to that screen and monitor my risk into the close. Fare ye well into the bell and keep it in perspective. It could be worse and for alotta people, it already is.


R.P.

Position in FAS, GE, SSO

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.

Copyright 2011 Minyanville Media, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

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