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Random Thoughts: A Feline Flag!

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Crash the cat offers cause for paws.

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It was just another Tuesday night, or so I thought. It had been a long day; after ten years of scribing real-time vibe, there are times when writing feels more forced than cathartic and yesterday was one of them. I've learned to accept those situations as the cost of doing business -- and running one. I know thyself, and the mojo wasn't particularly attuned.

Still, we had an important dinner meeting and I slapped on my game face. If the definition of professional nirvana is to do what you love with people you respect while serving the greater good, I know better than to take a night with my best pal -- who also happens to be the president of Minyanville -- for granted. The purpose of the journey is the journey itself.

I arrived home to find three sleeping kids and a rare stretch of solitude. It was quiet, perhaps too quiet.

And then it happened. "Crash," the feline with uncanny predictive powers, went nuts. He ran from room to room in a full sprint, dragged his over-sized toys and dropped them on my computer screen. He looked me squarely in the eye and let out a loud meow. If he had a tachometer, it would have red-lined.

I'm sure there are a few newbies in the 'Ville who are asking themselves if someone slipped peyote in my eggs this morning. The answer is "no," or at least not that I'm aware of (I've never even been to Mt. Vesuvius). As the world watches Europe and traders scramble to assimilate structural, technical, fundamental, and psychological market metrics, signs surround us if we open our eyes and pay attention.

The actions of a domesticated animal certainly don't qualify as an actionable catalyst, but Old School Minyans know better than to discount it entirely. Time will tell, I suppose, but I'm filing it away in the back of my crowded keppe as we together find our way.

Random Thoughts

  • Oh stop, a little levity goes a long way. You should only worry when something that's not supposed to be funny -- like stemming global financial contagion -- is treated as a joke.

  • For the life of me, I can't understand why we're looking to folks who never saw the first phase of the financial crisis coming for guidance on how to navigate the sovereign sequel.

  • The most constructive action yesterday belonged to the semis, which we've flagged repeatedly for their "dry" action. The group broke out of the bearish "churn" zone with a move above SOX 360. That level now morphs into support and it needs to hold if the bulls plan to recapture some glory. See the chart below, as well as the 50-day at SOX 370.


    Click to enlarge

  • Ditto the banks. BKX 35-40 is the channel to watch, Barclays (BCS), UBS (UBS), and Deutsche Bank (DB) are overseas proxies, while JP Morgan (JPM) , Bank America (BAC), and Goldman Sachs (GS) are stateside tells.


    Click to enlarge

  • The stealth positive creeping toward reality? According to our trusty Five-Step Guide, we're seemingly edging one step closer to acceptance. Well, that and European bourses slicing a third of their market value in a little over a month, pricing in seemingly inevitable defaults.

  • China could buy Italian bonds, to which I say, "So what?" I mean, China isn't gonna take over Italy (unless it's hostile) and the debt crisis isn't that linear.

  • The trick to the European debt "trade" is to avoid ad-hoc, one-off solutions (as we saw in the first phase of the crisis) and address this mess with a comprehensive plan.

  • You know my take -- debt destruction and/or reorganization is the only true medicine -- but you also know it won't come easy. The toughest, and typically right decisions rarely are.

  • I still sense the dollar works higher, all things being equal (and especially if QE 2.5 is a pipe dream).

  • Will the only way I lose 25 lbs be if I chop off my right arm?

  • I'm gonna jump over to the Buzz & Banter. Who's with me? (click for a free trial)

R.P.

Twitter: @todd_harrison

Follow Todd and over 30 professional traders as they share their ideas in real-time with a FREE 14 day trial to Buzz & Banter.

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No positions in stocks mentioned.

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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