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Random Thoughts: Gone Fishing for Morgan Stanley and HSBC


There's alotta trading left in the session and the closer we get to S&P 1500, the more likely S&P 1500 becomes.

  • Next time, give the raccoon a slingshot and even the playing field. Seriously, critters have feelings too.

  • Six-two stacked monster! Six-two stacked monster! I nibbled on some Morgan Stanley (MS) puts yesterday and given the proximity of S&P resistance - not to mention Morgan Stanley resistance - I fished for further puts rather than cut bait on the trade. It's a bit of an audible but that's allowed as long as there's an exit strategy (in this case, stops on the other side of $60).

  • Speaking of aforementioned resistance, HSBC (HBC) is higher on the heels of its decision to increase loan-loss reserves (despite the S&P reducing its outlook from positive to stable). $92 is the level. Mr. Valentine has set the price.

  • In some ways, MS is HBC. What way? A Billy Joel way.

  • So... the BLS is calculating that gas prices were DOWN 3.1% last month vs. prices at the pump going UP 5.1%? I would like to propose we dock them their "L."

  • For the life of me, I can't figure out why the new kid Andrew continues to blast this from his desktop.

  • Y'all see the dollar down another 55 bips today? Is that the lesser of two evils?

  • Given that - and the fact that China tacked on a finski last night-we flagged the commodities names out of the gate for action traction. For some reason, my eyes keep migrating to FCX but as it stands, it'll stay on my screen versus sneaking to my sheets.

  • BLINK and Baidu (BIDU) was up another 25 points on the opening. Nuttier than Austin Powers' coffee and sorta brings back visions of CMGI.

  • OK, so I like Grey's Anatomy. I'm still all man.

  • The S&P opened directly at 1490 resistance. I didn't spit into the wind there (yet) as I had a sneaking suspicion that expiration pull S&P 1500 into the picture.

  • I did nibble on a snivlet more Morgan Stanley puts and have HBC in my sights should $92 get closer.

  • Isn't it extremely myopic-and, dare I say, even a bit selfish-to assume that we're the only intelligent life in the universe if the universe continues infinitely?

  • Red beans in a green sea? Drugs (not hugs), the semis, media, software and, surprisingly, Yahoo (YHOO), eBay (EBAY) and Amazon (AMZN) all opened flat to down in the gap higher (typically a sign of stealth supply).

  • I mentioned on the Buzz, during that observation, to watch Google (GOOG) closely, for if THAT flipped the crimson switch, S&P 1500 might not see the day of light. Or the light of day. Whatever… it flipped and the tape tripped.

  • Hoofy and Boo snuck into the grand ballroom this morning to grill Bernanke. No, seriously... here it is!

  • See that girl, long and lean...

  • Kiss my Grits! Over in Flow's Diner, we just saw someone buy 3,000,000 XLE (energy spiders) and sell 10,000 XLF (financial spider) June 35 puts. Such a tangled web we weave...

  • There's alotta trading left in the session and, the way option mechanics work, the closer we get to S&P 1500, the more likely S&P 1500 becomes.

  • Wait, I know that sounds really silly but there's there there. If you want to understand more about the optionality in the marketplace, read Professor Succo's tutorial. It's bang on.

  • I'm slated to be outie tomorrow and Friday to attend the Trader's Expo in Vegas, baby. So ya know... the tape tends to get nutty when I'm not sitting in the saddle.

  • Have you ever had a stock taunt you? I mean, really get your craw? Mine is Fannie Mae (FNM), a name I've been vocally negative on foreva as it seemingly pinned $70 for thousands of expirations in a row. I put it on my personal restricted list and it hasn't seen a seven... or six... or five-handle since.

  • And you know what? That's fine. Opportunities are made up easier than losses. Or, that's the story I'm sticking with!

  • Giving Back IS the Bottom Line

    Minyanville would like to announce our support of BTIG today in their effort to affect positive change through their philanthropic endeavors.

    These non-profit organizations will receive commission profits earned on Wednesday, November 14, 2007:

    The Robin Hood Foundation, The Guardsmen, Lead the Way, Autism Speaks, the Autism Treatment Center of America, the Allan Houston Legacy Foundation , Miracle League, the Long Island Lightning Junior Wheelchair Basketball Team, the Sallie Foundation for Teen Suicide Prevention, G.O.A.L (Giving Open Access to Learning), Jacob's Cure for Canavan's Disease, The Jewish Enrichment Center, the Deafness Research Foundation and the Magic Johnson Foundation.

    Over the past two years, they have donated over $3 million dollars to these and other outstanding organizations.

    Good luck to Steve Starker and the entire BTIG family!


Holiday Festivus is here! Come join us and support the Ruby Peck Foundation For Children's Education at an old-fashioned Southern-style hoe-down in the heart of New York City on December 7th. Click the image below to learn more!

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Position in MS

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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