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Potash, Mosaic Looking Like Manure


Fertilizer stocks sit this rally out.


Hello from New York where I don't do, I haven't played a video game in nearly a year and I've never Googled (GOOG) myself. If not for the on-line crack pipe that is I could be downright constructive.

As is, I'm in constant danger of some minor, seemingly benign trigger point sending me on a binge that ends only with a trade idea or firm appointment. This morning an idle comment regarding "coaching" from Prof. Krueger sent me on a trip that roamed from Pacino in Any Given Sunday, through the Miracle pep-talk, to Duane Bobick's beating by Ken Norton and, finally, a brief documentary about Olympic boxing great Teofilo Stevenson. I'd no sooner link you to any of the above than I would casually encourage you to try heroin.

Here's what I'm doing when not chasing the obscure video clip dragon:

  • I see the XLF financial ETF rocking. I see Merrill Lynch (MER) tacking on nearly 5% on the heels of an interview with CEO John Thain that would have made Bill Clinton in his prime blush, for all the "never say never" and "if things stay as they are right this minute" hedging. I respect a group that rallies in the face of ambiguity but I'm just fine keeping my bat on my shoulder on the financials, for now.

  • Why don't I mind missing the rip? Because I'm sticking with my oft-stated bear market strategy of selling huge rallies and buying abject fear. Today looks like "drifting optimism" from where I'm sitting. It's working for those who caught it (attababy, Todd-O!) but I'm playing a different game, for now.

  • Speaking of bad influences, I sent Todd-O the Miracle clip and, just like that, the link goes in his 11:22 Buzz. I'm telling you, be careful of dabbling with that stuff, people.

  • Not all the beer goggles in the world are sufficient to make the quarter Molson Coors (TAP) turned in this morning look attractive. The Canadian / American / Bitterly Disappointing beer concern cited "rising commodity prices". It should have made me do a keg stand before trying to sell me that bull. What about distribution efficiencies? What about the SABMiller partnership? It's hard to stay in love with a company that misses badly and bungles the way it communicates it.

  • Despite my love for the (non-revenue generating) division, Google continues to trade like yesterday's growth company. Tech in general has been beyond punk this year (don't get me started on Microsoft (MSFT) when I've just had a belly full of TAP). No, I don't think anything Cisco (CSCO) says is going to change that fact.

  • JetBlue (JBLU) is announcing a policy to charge for blankets. US Airways (LCC) is charging $2 for a soda unless you complain. Pete Najarian is pinging me to let me know that he spent 12 hours at O'Hare yesterday (four of which in a plane, on the tarmac) and still didn't get to LaGuardia. Ticket prices are ripping and the airlines are losing more money every quarter. The easy short may be over but the market being open is an outstanding opportunity to dump long positions and shall remain so for the foreseeable future (which is how long Pete and his family will be stuck in Chicago).

  • Amen to Jeff Cooper's Buzz on the fertilizer stocks, which are rallying not at all despite the 200 point Dow move. Hell hath no fury like cult stocks scorned. Yesterday may not mark the official break of stocks like Potash (POT) and Mosaic (MOS) but, as I've been saying for weeks, when long-public companies suddenly ramp more than 10-fold it's time to make an exit plan and stick to it. My plan for leaving the ferts was a break in the uptrend. Consider those trends broken and, from where I'm sitting, the if/when snap back rally in the group will be a sell.

  • The number of ad hominem attacks I've been subjecting myself to for noting that a 15-fold four year move in, say, Agrium (AGU), based on the idea that the "Chinese need to be fed" will obviously be unwound is: A) outstanding support for my "It's a bubble" inclination and B) the reason I'm being honest when I say I've never Googled myself. My e-mail flow is mean enough.
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No positions in stocks mentioned.

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