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Random Thoughts: Can BlackBerry Catch Apple?


The smartphone wars heat up with the launch of the BB10.

Editor's Note: Todd posts his vibes in real time each day on our Buzz & Banter.

Smartphones are all the rage today with the release of the BlackBerry (NASDAQ:RIMM) BB10, and you have to appreciate the symmetry.

The "easy" trade we flagged in the fall was to buy the stock into the launch-which worked to the tune of 200%--and the easy trade the other way was to sell the news, as we posited Monday morning. The stock is now down 20% since we posted the latter article, so accept it for what it is-the ways and means of Wall Street.

A few random thoughts, if I may.

First, note the symmetry between the Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) November top-tick at $700, which correlated perfectly-to the day!-with the RIMM bottom-tick at six and change.

Could it be a pure coincidence? Perhaps, but its nucking futz nonetheless.

The second-and sure to be unpopular-observation is the Head & Shoulders pattern in Apple, which "works" through a pure technical lens, to $360 (don't shoot the messenger). I'm not piling on after a 35% decline-I currently have no position-but we strive to see both sides in the 'Ville and now you do. (For a great read on Apple, read Jeff Cooper's vibes here.)

One final note: Once the traders get shaken out of RIMM (both ways), I believe the BB10 will continue to impress those who left the device for dead and it will claw back share, both on the enterprise and consumer side; in fact, one of the cooler features of the phone is the ability to toggle between personal and professional endeavors with a firewall separating the experiences, which is sure to excite the enterprise IT folks.

Expectations are obviously much higher now than where they were when the stock was at six, so keep some loose grips if you're playing with a longer-term horizon. That said, I've held this puppy and can honestly say that it looks and feels like an iPhone 29…with a better Web experience.

I'm close to the company-in full disclosure, MV has a relationship with it-but my opinion has never been, nor will ever be, for sale. If I didn't believe in the brand and, in this case, the operating system, I wouldn't risk my name or word and THAT is a true story. (Note: The same holds true for eSignal; I'm not just their spokesman, I'm a client!)

Random Thoughts
  • Hoofy and Boo chewed through The Bull-Bear Debate yesterday, lest you missed it. See both sides; always see both sides.
  • The trannies-or, transportation stocks-broke out of a consolidation pattern and popped 20% since mid-November. I bring this to your attention as they're showing some nascent signs of exhaustion. Keep half an eye peeled to the TRAN 5500 level per the chart below as that is the first tangible support (5% below current levels per the chart below).
  • S&P 1500 is too crowded for my liking; I prefer a pop (to S&P 1520?) before a drop.
  • The financials are mixed today but keep an eye on BKX (INDEXDJX:BKX) 53 as that's nice and tight support-or future resistance, if breached. As go the piggies, so goes the poke.
  • There's an emerging consensus that price action and fundamentals have become increasingly disconnected (thank you Uncle Sam!), which would explain the uptick in technical chatter across the trading and media universe. Personally, I believe our forward path will be dictated by the other two metrics: Structural and Psychology, and not necessarily in that order.

Twitter: @todd_harrison

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