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Two Ways To Play: S&P May Overcome Performance Anxiety

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Strengthen your portfolio in good times and bad.

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S&P 1650?

The top story in Bloomberg this morning, analysts at Deutsche Bank, Lehman Brothers, and UBS predict the S&P 500 index will have the best performance since 1982 during this year's second half.

The consensus according to a Bloomberg survey calls for a rise of 18% by next January. On the high end, DB chief strategists believes the S&P 500 index will end the year at 1,650 and Lehman's Ian Scott is predicting 1,630. The market fears earnings will collapse and interest rates will surge on inflation worries, and "neither is going to happen," Scott said. See Mr. Practical's take in How the Bubble Bursts.

From the Bull Pen: Could stocks rally without Goldman Sachs (GS)? Those bullish can play the upside, but near term sell-stops can be set below $170.

From the Bear Cave: The rallies will come but it doesn't mean we'll be in a bull market. Bears can choose to play the downside should a stock like American Eagle (AEO) crawl back towards the $16 level.


J.C. Penney Back To School

Back-to-school season is already nearing and J.C. Penney (JCP) has a strategy to gain more of the teenage market, according to Reuters. In an effort to appeal to a larger teen base, JCP will offer more styles with six new brands hitting stores as early as next week. "The style will appeal to the teens and the price will certainly work for the parents because we are affordable compared to the department and specialty stores," said chief marketing officer Mike Boylson. The back-to-school season is JCP's second-largest sales season next to Christmas. For a retail perspective, see a recent Five Things You Need To Know by Professor Kevin Depew.

From the Bull Pen: Bulls might see a better play in Wal-Mart (WMT) with the stock approaching $55 support. Sell-stops can be set below.

From the Bear Cave: Is the back-to-school, teenage strategy a new one? A rally towards the $40 strike is what the bears are looking for, and bears can play the downside should the stock get to that level.

For more ideas in real time throughout the trading day, check out Minyanville's Buzz & Banter.


Quick Check Around the World


Asian trading closed with the Hang Seng +2.28%, Nikkei +0.92%, Sensex +0.54%, Taiwan +1.56% and Shanghai +4.59%.

A glance towards Europe finds the CAC +0.73%, DAX +0.85%, FTSE +0.74%

As of 8:30 AM EST, S&P futures are trading +2 points to 1267, and Nasdaq futures are up +12.50 points to 1834.


A Look At Commodities

Commodities are lower. Crude oil is down -2.31 to 142.98. Gold is lower -11.40 to 924.10. Silver is off -0.395 to 17.890, and copper is down -12.30 to 384.00.

The dollar index is up +0.290 to 73.021.

No events on the radar today, but click here to see the full trading radar.


Have a great day!
No positions in stocks mentioned.

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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