Cara’s Commentary & Community Chat, Fri., Mar. 20, 2009

[6:48am ET] This morning, I thought I

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362 Comments

  1. sammas(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 11:01 am
  2. Craig(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 11:31 am

    Much has been written here the last few days about the President’s attitude and whether he has been acting as President of all the people, or slandering and libeling AIG.

    Today in Colin Twiggs is an example of a past President whom we all respect for his tough decisive action on this topic.

    After reading it, I submit, President Obama is a lightweight in this department and if history is any example, he hasn’t said enough. Compared to this he didn’t libel or slander anyone!

    “Gentlemen, I have had men watching you for a long time and I am convinced that you have used the funds of the bank to speculate in the breadstuffs of the country. When you won, you divided the profits amongst you, and when you lost, you charged it to the bank. You tell me that if I take the deposits from the bank and annul its charter, I shall ruin ten thousand families. That may be true, gentlemen, but that is your sin! Should I let you go on, you will ruin fifty thousand families, and that would be my sin! You are a den of vipers and thieves.”

    ~ Andrew Jackson, 1767-1845, 7th US President, when forcing the closure of the Second Bank of the US in 1836 by revoking its charter.

    • sammas(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 11:57 am

      Submitted by swissrobinson (493 comments) on Fri, 03/20/2009 – 03:45 #17921

      • Craig(118083 comments)-
        March 20, 2009 at 12:06 pm

        Yep, saw Swissrobinson’s post after reading the new 3/20 commentary.

        great minds…..? :>)

    • Grym(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 12:27 pm
      • Craig(118083 comments)-
        March 20, 2009 at 12:44 pm

        Grym,
        I’m not going to defend all the President does or has done, but it behooves us as informed citizens to recognize the difference in the country, citizens and system now as opposed to when Jackson was President.

        We had no Fed, we had no mass media controlled by the corrupt, there was more power in fewer hands and less power in a smaller, less timely *print* media, and less power to the people.

        In order to lead in these modern times where our population dwarfs, by many times, what Jackson dealt with. (50,000 families? Don’t we wish?) It requires the approval and support of the people, which is what Reagan, and now, whether you personally approve or not, Obama is now doing. It may appear to be campaigning and seeking approval….because it is!

        Like it or not, that is the world we live in. To do what Jackson did NOW would be bold indeed. He could NEVER accomplish what he did THEN, NOW, without campaigning and seeking citizen approval. It is what it is.

        Clearly Jackson ruled in a less complex environment.

        • Grym(118083 comments)-
          March 20, 2009 at 6:28 pm
          • Craig(118083 comments)-
            March 20, 2009 at 7:17 pm

            I didn’t say leadership is related to population size. I was noting the difference in the size of the victim population between now and then. Jackson’s problem was national, not international, and the size of the problem in national terms was quite small.

            Other than that, this amounts to comparing some old baseball/basketball/football championship team to some modern iteration and trying to draw some comparison between vastly different circumstances. It’s still apples and oranges. The old Celtics are the old Celtics, Jackson was Jackson in his own time, and Obama is neither in a new time. The only comparison to be made at this point is they are both Presidents.

            Just one big difference was news and how responsive a populace COULD be. It took weeks for news to get around in Jackson’s time. today you could download the President’s appearance on Jay Leno. We don’t know how Jackson might fare in the same circumstances…..but we know this financial mess would have never happened. Neither Jackson nor Obama were responsible for their predicament.

            I can’t really respond to the last two comments. I don’t pretend to know the President’s inner psychology or needs, and I don’t think I appear to be listening to anybody, surely not the president or his spin doctors, but I’m not relying on appearance.

          • Grym(118083 comments)-
            March 21, 2009 at 12:26 am
          • Craig(118083 comments)-
            March 21, 2009 at 2:18 am
          • Grym(118083 comments)-
            March 21, 2009 at 1:05 pm
          • vinod(118083 comments)-
            March 21, 2009 at 6:59 pm
          • barry(118083 comments)-
            March 21, 2009 at 11:12 am

            I am seeing signs we have entered a period of rule by govt prompted “mobs.” I was expecting a different kind of leadership of our country.

            “Working Families is planning a tour to AIG employees’ homes in Fairfield County”

            http://www.courant.com/business/hc-aigbonus0221.ar

          • Craig(118083 comments)-
            March 21, 2009 at 1:05 pm

            I worry a lot about Mob Rule, however, all laws, all punishment, all shunning, has it’s roots in actual physical punishment. Without the threat of action laws and rules are meaningless.

            I mean, we have the Constitution, but even the writers of that document thought we would have to spill blood to defend it.

            We have (had) laws to inhibit both sides, the parasites, to limit their greed, and the victims, to limit their vengence. If only the parasites had thought about how their victims might react and where they would find protection…..when they decided to use their influence and power to remove the protections for the victims. When they did that they dismantled their own protections too, because by removing the protections of law from the victims, you leave only the lawless response.

            In this sense I have no sympathy for the parasites. They are completely responsible for their predicament. When do we sign up for the bus tours of Paulson’s digs?

            Bill says books will be written. Sure enough, I just wonder how long it will take to find the bottom of this mess while we have people like Alan Greenspan trying to revise history for himself. It might take three or four years to get close.

          • number2son(118083 comments)-
            March 21, 2009 at 1:58 pm

            I worry a lot about Mob Rule, however, all laws, all punishment, all shunning, has it’s roots in actual physical punishment.

            Consider the irony. For how long have we heard critics describe the American people as “sheeple”? Lulled into complacence by easy money and vapid entertainment while the wolves had a field day. Now, after untenable excesses have lead to the collapse of this system, and people are suffering in large numbers, the People have taken notice. And when we have finally had enough of the incompetence and corruption rotting away at our institutions, and we begin to act, we hear about “mob rule” taking over.

            Beware of the wolves as they run for the forest barking about “mob rule”.

            The groundswell of popular anger is rooted in genuine injustices. Maybe Congress and the President have been jolted into taking the right action at long last? We’ll see. It’s long overdue.

            Agreed that Paulson, the wolf at the head of the pack for so many years, must account for his role in the mess. And the beta wolves he has left behind to lead the pack, Geithner and Summers, must be removed from positions of power.

          • barry(118083 comments)-
            March 21, 2009 at 2:43 pm

            “Beware of the wolves as they run for the forest barking about “mob rule”.”

            There is a point to protecting the citizens right to protest. Its just that the government encouraged directed outrage organized and paid for by formalized workers groups and encouraged by our leader reminded me of what I have had read about the birth of the Brown Shirts in other historic socialist regimes. Perhaps I am over reacting. Time will tell.

          • number2son(118083 comments)-
            March 21, 2009 at 2:59 pm

            There is a point to protecting the citizens right to protest. Its just that the government encouraged directed outrage organized and paid for by formalized workers groups and encouraged by our leader reminded me of what I have had read about the birth of the Brown Shirts in other historic socialist regimes. Perhaps I am over reacting.

            The right to protest is fundamental. But where do you get the idea that people forming protest groups are somehow directed by the “government”?

            And you need check your history. The Brown Shirts were fascists. It’s patently absurd to claim otherwise.

          • Grym(118083 comments)-
            March 21, 2009 at 1:43 pm
          • number2son(118083 comments)-
            March 21, 2009 at 2:07 pm

            Gates is one of the biggest employers of imported tech workers and keeps pushing for more H1(b) workers.

            With all due respect, have you ever worked in high tech? I do and I have been hiring for high tech positions recently. I would like nothing more than to find qualified American workers to hire. But the fact of the matter is that they are few and far between. Even now!

            I was in fact surprised at how scarce people are in this industry. This is in stark contrast to the decimation of the 2000-2001 dotcom implosion when everyone I worked with or knew in the industry lost their job.

          • yvrapx(118083 comments)-
            March 21, 2009 at 2:18 pm

            number2son
            Agreed and from my friends in the US tech industry foreign nationals hired by US co’s to fill the gap where Americans are in short supply, are being sent home on expiry of their work visas. Not good for the health of American Tech co’s these people are needed right now. Myopic, inward looking policies will do nothing to improve the lot of the US economy.

          • Chickenpookie(118083 comments)-
            March 21, 2009 at 2:51 pm

            “With all due respect, have you ever worked in high tech? I do and I have been hiring for high tech positions recently. I would like nothing more than to find qualified American workers to hire. But the fact of the matter is that they are few and far between. Even now!”

            I’d like to see if you could qualify this statement a bit, some specifics please… I know of some US companies that won’t bother themselves with interviewing US citizens, and others who’s hiring process is shockingly loose. I find both extreme and troubling. Many of these jobs range from simple assembly or equipment operators in the high tech sector to highly skilled equipment engineering. So what is your definition of high tech position, and what are the job functions? I suspect you’re guilty of short changing some portion of the population and automatically discount all American made products.

            Wow, I’m disappointed!!!

          • number2son(118083 comments)-
            March 21, 2009 at 3:24 pm

            I am talking about publicly posted job openings for which the overwhelming majority of qualified applicants are H-1B. These are jobs in software engineering that have a very well-defined range of skills.

            I think this is the result of how the software development industry in the U.S. has evolved since the dotcom days. After the crash, most of my American colleagues moved on to other professions while those who had H-1B status either returned home or stayed on as best they could. That is one reason non-resident aliens have the edge at this moment in time.

            Another is that countries like India have invested heavily in providing education in software development and other IT occupations. And so has China. Many of the post-dotcom non-resident aliens are graduates of American graduate schools with Master’s degrees in computer science.

            In the meantime, the best and brightest American residents go to school to become lawyers and investment bankers. That is, those that can still afford a college education.

            Oh, and I drive an American-made car.

          • Chickenpookie(118083 comments)-
            March 21, 2009 at 4:30 pm

            Great, there’s hope yet then. I’m not sure of your experience but in mine our HR department has always been successful (with some degree of assistance) in the process of acquiring talent. Of course there are many outside professional technical resource specialists I’ve had the pleasure of working with as well…. I realize my inability to asses the level of detail particular to your requirements and goals, but wouldn’t expect too much difficulty accessing the national talent pool through the broad range of available resources.

            http://heather.cs.ucdavis.edu/itaa.real.html

          • Grym(118083 comments)-
            March 22, 2009 at 1:26 pm
      • Seamus(118083 comments)-
        March 20, 2009 at 5:14 pm
    • kaimu(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 4:47 pm

      ALOHA !!

      Craig … That was the only US President who presided over a ZERO US DEBT!

      Where are those types of leaders today? I voted for one instead of McCain and Obama last NOV!

      I was in the minority as usual!

      ELIMINATE THE US FED …

      • teamonfuego(118083 comments)-
        March 20, 2009 at 5:23 pm

        If only Ron had the “likeability” that Obama does…we would be much better off because of it…

  3. Bull Hunter(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 11:56 am

    Good morning.

    JNJ – Upgraded to Buy @ UBS

    ————————

    Other Potential Market Movers:

    UBS Initiates Coverage of F with a Buy & GM with a Sell.

  4. Grym(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 12:08 pm
    • jack black(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 12:29 pm

      “As a policy, I am as opposed to general wealth redistribution globally as I am nationally.”

      Whether you like it or not, it’s happening. I call it a reversion to the mean.

      The history teaches up that wealthy societies become lazy and wasteful and poor ones ambitious and fearless. Rome and barbarians analogy comes to mind. I think that the economic fall of USA and western Europe is a matter of time. It will be catalyzed by unfavorable demographics, shortage of resources, and possible wars or rampant terrorism.

      FD: I’m a half empty guy.

      • Grym(118083 comments)-
        March 20, 2009 at 12:34 pm

        Jack,

        Unfortunately I must agree. Except I’m leaning more toward 3/4 empty due to change I can’t stomach.

        The White House is facing stiff competition from the Congress on how to mismanage this dire situation.

        The tactics of diversion are totally insulting to the American intelligence.

        What they say is as stupid as what they do (and don’t do).

        • swissrobinson(118083 comments)-
          March 20, 2009 at 1:00 pm

          >The tactics of diversion are totally insulting to the American intelligence

          Would that be the American intelligence community, or the intelligence of the American community?

          A world of difference! πŸ˜‰

  5. jack black(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 12:10 pm

    Nice chart and very convincing. I have been watching CPC, CPCE and ISE in disbelief for a few days now as they registered extremely high optimism levels in the last several days. As a matter of fact, $CPC SMA10 is the lowest in the 3 years! Other notable times with similar, but higher, reading were apr 06, jan 07, oct 07, may 08, jan 09, etc. The ISE SMA10 shows the same thing (but inverse due to ISE reporting. Doesn’t sound good at all. This is why I’m mostly cash now with a light short position opened yesterday.

    On the other hand, the US stock action can be partially explained by US $ in a free fall. If one corrects SPX for the $ value, stocks started to slide since 3/17/09. This throws a monkey wrench at any TA.

  6. bigwad1(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 12:46 pm

    New York Times article
    This huge company of offshore companies needs to be dismantled and quickly….

    http://www.nytimes.com/2009/03/20/business/20aig.h

  7. Bull Hunter(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 12:48 pm

    BBY – Price Target Raised from $36 to $40 @ Credit Suisse. Outperform Rating.

  8. jack black(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 12:52 pm

    % SP above 10 day MA is almost 100%. Will this indicator fail?

    http://lh6.ggpht.com/_APmrYvpA45s/ScL2tMuraSI/AAAA

  9. tgifbipo(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 12:57 pm

    http://www.incrediblecharts.com/tradingdiary/2009-

    Gentlemen, I have had men watching you for a long time and I am convinced that you have used the funds of the bank to speculate in the breadstuffs of the country. When you won, you divided the profits amongst you, and when you lost, you charged it to the bank. You tell me that if I take the deposits from the bank and annul its charter, I shall ruin ten thousand families. That may be true, gentlemen, but that is your sin! Should I let you go on, you will ruin fifty thousand families, and that would be my sin! You are a den of vipers and thieves.

    ~ Andrew Jackson, 1767-1845, 7th US President, when forcing the closure of the Second Bank of the US in 1836 by revoking its charter

    • swissrobinson(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 1:00 pm

      NO….IT’S NOT POSSIBLE!!!!

      Craig, was that great minds think alike or the herd always follows in each others footsteps?

      :p

      • Craig(118083 comments)-
        March 20, 2009 at 1:08 pm

        Well now it’s looking more herd-like!

        Lead the way my friend!

  10. bigwad1(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 1:03 pm

    Goldman Sachs, which had last autumn denied having any “material” exposure to AIG, was revealed to be the biggest beneficiary from the bailout of AIG, receiving $12.9 billion of recently received government money to settle credit default swap (CDS) trades between the two firms. The bailout’s chief architect, of course, was former Goldman CEO and later Treasury Secretary Hank Paulson, and Liddy himself was a Goldman board member until he stepped down to take the top job at AIG.
    Gregg Greenberg at the street

    • swissrobinson(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 1:07 pm

      Well GS will be up for a class action law suit from taxpayers if there’s solid evidence to back such an assertion…

      • bigwad1(118083 comments)-
        March 20, 2009 at 1:23 pm

        Spitzer has been pounding the table about the back door actions of GS for 2 years now!
        Go stand in line, wait for your turn to roll the dice!
        PSST…your government is full of ex-Goldman banksters.

        • Craig(118083 comments)-
          March 20, 2009 at 1:26 pm

          They’re part of EVERY key developed economy government.

          The corruption/mob is worldwide…..except China….THEY would DIE there.

      • Finger Lakes(118083 comments)-
        March 20, 2009 at 1:38 pm

        These are the points I was trying to make yesterday. Why is everyone frothing at the mouth over 165 Million of bonus payments by AIG when they’ve given 1000X more to their counterparties to the tune of 160 Billion. The first payments went out last September when the Government gave AIG the first 85 Billion. Who got the majority of that 85 Billion? Try GS, BAC, C, and a few other connected banks. I still believe the cash from AIG is what allowed these companies to dump their enormous stock holdings and crash the market 2K points in about two weeks. And if we follow the payments by AIG in February, I’ll bet we see the same pattern there.

        I would love to see these connected banks be forced to give back their “bonuses” but I’m not holding my breath since letting these banks collapse is worse than famine or even death according to our trusted leaders.

        Rob.

  11. Craig(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 1:11 pm

    Mr. Spitzer is singing his tune…they could knock him down but they won’t keep him out now. I think it was an interview on CNN where he called for an investigation into the GS/AIG connection. A chance to redeem part of his legacy? Let’s hope so for all our sakes. I hope he and his family are doing better.

    • number2son(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 1:26 pm

      Someone needs to go after that organized crime organization. But I won’t hold my breath, not with so many of its people implanted in the Obama administration.

      Anyway, here’s the link to the CNN interview:

      Watch AIG’s payouts, not the bonuses, Spitzer says

    • bluesky(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 3:55 pm

      I’m starting the “Spitzer Revitalization Fund” please send in your donations! This will go toward paying for 24 hr. secret service protection for him and his loved ones. -Thank you for caring!

  12. number2son(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 1:17 pm
  13. 2nd_ave(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 1:26 pm
  14. writersblock(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 1:28 pm

    Bill, really enjoyed this morning’s commentary, thanks.

    • dberryclan(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 10:01 pm

      I also as usual, ‘Really” enjoyed the commentaries from Bill and his team this week! You are a real benefit to the world of independant trading. I hope more like you surface in the coming years……sincerely, David

  15. Bull Hunter(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 1:30 pm

    RIMM – Caris & Co. Initiates Coverage with a Buy. Price Target = $60

  16. 2nd_ave(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 1:31 pm

    I see absolutely no change in the outlook.

    • vanillabean(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 1:57 pm

      2nd,

      are you still holding fas at 6.71?

      thanks, I am heavy in financials and getting the urge to bail.. I highly value your input.

      thanks,

      vb

      • 2nd_ave(118083 comments)-
        March 20, 2009 at 2:17 pm

        vb- No. I sold yesterday’s FAS allotments (6.71/6.12) @ (6.69/6.46). Why?

        [Re: friday drop, QT?/out of FAS @ 6.45
        Submitted by 2nd_ave (924 comments) on Thu, 03/19/2009 – 14:28 #17820 (Posted in reply to this comment (#17818))
        Anyone else get the feeling they’re allowing too many buyers in? Based on past experience, they’re about to be tested.]

        So, I would say you’re getting tested right now, as you point out. Would I bail at this point? No. (It’s all mental, right? πŸ˜‰

        • 2nd_ave(118083 comments)-
          March 20, 2009 at 2:21 pm

          vb- If it helps, I have this mental picture of FAS in the twenties. I also have a mental bet riding on FAS/FAZ crossing paths @ 14.

          • vanillabean(118083 comments)-
            March 20, 2009 at 2:37 pm

            more thanks,

            I don’t have a margin account so when I sell, I have to wait a few days to rebuy. I have faz at 25.62 which is my version of a hedge or straddle.

            vb

        • vanillabean(118083 comments)-
          March 20, 2009 at 2:28 pm

          2nd,

          I asked why since I watch your trades to make my decisions and I did not see when you sold the fas. (I share the same viewpoint as you on the market.)

          So, Take it as a compliment. You have been on the most part right on with your trades lately.

          vb

  17. 2nd_ave(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 1:33 pm

    I emailed the answer to your question from yesterday.

    • Corner Stone(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 3:24 pm

      Gracias senor. It was in my spam filter, along with my Reliant bill. Hmmm…maybe I should have all my bills go to spam filter and then ask for a bailout when I don’t pay them for a few months.
      Seems to be working for others.

      • 2nd_ave(118083 comments)-
        March 20, 2009 at 4:21 pm

        LOL- That’s why I posted a response as well. All the first-time emails end up in the Spam folder.

  18. Craig(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 1:37 pm

    Practice makes perfect is false. A person can practice mistakes their entire life.

    “Perfect practice makes perfect” is what I re-learned from the most competitive people I know. Thank You Dodie Green, Purina Sheepdog Champion and Olympic dressage competitor.

  19. Finger Lakes(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 1:44 pm

    Each one of us can contribute in a small way with the courage of Andrew Jackson. It’s very simple. Identify the connected banks who are corrupting the system and stealing our money and make it a point not to do business with them. Cut up their credit cards and don’t take their loans or don’t deposit your money with them.

    You may have to settle for less return on CD’s since sound banks pay below market rates usually. That’s why they’re sound. Also, you may have to pay higher interest if you need a loan for the same reasons.

    Personally, I don’t mind earning less or paying more for doing the right thing. My wife just asked me last night how I can pay attention to all this Fraud without doing anything. I responded that I am doing something. I’m boycotting all the corrupt institutions. And if many other people followed my footsteps, then “we the people” could rid ourselves of this cancer!!

    Rob.

    • TN_blogger(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 3:41 pm

      I do not have a wife, but I do have a mind and it agrees with you much about your take on the banks and power elites.
      I see the US predicament as one of shared responsibility or if I do not do anything then someone surely will mentality. I really enjoy listening to Kaimu who says get rid of the fed. I have commented on Ron Paul and the bill he has which calls for auditing the fed as a first step to dissolving the fed. Sorry to be so negative, but it makes me sick to watch the USA burn around a bunch of sleepy, lazy, uninformed sheep that just want to watch TV and “why can’t we just all get along…its crap and I am doing my best to stop our destruction, but it sure is lonely. Lots of talk but no action as far as I can tell. Thanks K for all you do to help us become aware of our situation!

      I apologize in advance if I am making claims that are not true, but this situation is wearing me down big-time! There may be some on here who are contacting their senators and/or trying to educate people. I am still hopeful however and know that great men/women step up when challenged.

      • Shiva(118083 comments)-
        March 20, 2009 at 4:03 pm

        I would also like to thank Kaimu for constantly ringing in our ears to get rid of the fed (and supporting a lot of evidence to back it up). I know, we wont be able to do it soon enuf but atleast i have learnt the importance between holding paper issued by Le Papier Corporation vs holding physical assets. And thanks also to Bill whos ahead of the curve and call outs all these snake oil salesmen for what they are. This is a really a good community with honest discourse on variety of subjects including Taoism πŸ™‚

      • Finger Lakes(118083 comments)-
        March 20, 2009 at 5:25 pm

        Thanks. The more people that wake up and stop supporting these big banks is the only way the small people like us can ever win against them.

        Rob.

      • kaimu(118083 comments)-
        March 20, 2009 at 5:25 pm

        ALOHA !!

        As Rob points out … If we all pulled our funds out of these US FED banks then that would send a PROTEST message, but would they fail? I doubt it, unless we can stop the MOUSE MONEY MACHINE(US FED). These Harvard guys are a lot trickier than those Community college guys over at “fraud challenged” ENRON!

        Lets face it nearly all US BANKS and much of the rest of the World Banks would be in line with Lehmans if it were not for BIG GOVERNMENT. Really the only way to kill of the power of the US FED is to eliminate it, but unless we first get the REPS and DEMS out of our way then that road is all UPHILL to the moon, politically speaking.

        I have always considered owning gold and silver as a PROTEST against the US FED and against the US GOVERNMENT … An action that votes against FIAT and that is a vote against the US FED and the US GOVERNMENT!

        The current leaders and “their” government are “anti-US Constitution” … PERIOD!!!! There is nothing more patriotic than voting the two party aristocracy out of office. There is nothing more patriotic than demanding REAL MONEY instead of FALSE MONEY! There is nothing more patriotic than protesting against the “long train of abuses”! It is our RIGHT to get rid of government that preys upon WE THE PEOPLE …. Read the US Declaration Of Independence.

        If the current BIG GOVERNMENT we have now was the least bit PATRIOTIC and AMERICAN … TRUE AMERICAN … then they would have let the US BANKS fail and they would abolish the US FED and they would eliminate US INCOME TAXES and they would voluntarily dismantle their thrones and shrink to an unnoticeable size. I can only conclude that since our “elected” leaders have done none of that and show NO signs of ever taking those steps that the government we now have is a FASCIST POLIT-BANK!

        I am first in line to support RON PAUL’S BILL to take those first steps and have the US FED audited. As the US FED knows the passing of such a Bill would open the door to go over to Ft. Knox and see whats left of our gold reserves.

        QUESTION AUTHORITY!!

        • Illini(118083 comments)-
          March 20, 2009 at 6:30 pm

          All this talk of old presidents and the Constitution remind me that I am related to a Founding Father, William Few. He signed the Constitution for Georgia and later became the first Senator of that State. Still later he went to New York and was the second president of City Bank of New York (todays Citi Group, I believe, but lets not hold that against him). He and I are first cousins six times removed since our closest common ancestor is his grandparents. William Few can be found on Wikipedia.

  20. G(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 1:45 pm

    I thought my username was simple and short. After reading this mornings commentary, maybe I should change it? For the record, I haven’t sent any emails or investment suggestions to Bill. Have a great day, G.

    • 2nd_ave(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 1:47 pm

      G- LOL!

  21. shark_attack(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 1:59 pm

    for Pipeline, where they talk about “gamers driving up the cost of trading” and the guy puts the shark in a goldfish bowl? I hate that ad.

  22. shark_attack(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 2:00 pm

    Bought it this morning at eight oh two. Sold it….too soon but hey…that’s my cross to bear that I’m trying to throw off.

    Don’t let yerself get crucified on a cross of silver, or gold for that matter (W.J. Bryant)

  23. shark_attack(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 2:05 pm

    Unless you are an adept shortist now is time to close all longs and begin your weekend.

    Happy first day of spring everyone!!!!!

    • vanillabean(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 2:10 pm

      Shark,

      welcome back by the way πŸ™‚

      What about more rabbits coming out of the hat over the weekend? and do you mean Gold too?

      I am on the fence – maybe I will sell half? and hold faz I bought at 25.62.

      thanks!

      vb

  24. skater(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 2:05 pm

    Is it hope, greed, inertia, astrological sign, voices in your head – that keep you from making a move that should already have been made?

    Decaf is probably the answer.

  25. QT(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 2:06 pm

    Critical candle print today. XLF has to print 8.4 [weekly trend line] or below if you are bearish, above it for the bulls.

  26. Ron Sen(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 2:06 pm

    Of course, timing is everything.

    “Gun to the head” six months or a year from now, the markets could be up a lot with the ‘eventual’ Weimar Republic like hyperinflation that I believe is inevitable.

    Shorter-term however, for me the breadth and sentiment extensions create unacceptable ‘risk’ and lower probability opportunities. Said another way, shorting is tactical, and I have no idea what is ‘strategic’ except holding a diverse portfolio of junior golds.

  27. mbernold(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 2:08 pm
    • number2son(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 2:37 pm

      “My fear is that the damage is done,” he told a congressional subcommittee. “That they will return [the money], but that they will return it with their resignations.”

      There is little doubt within Financial Products that he’s right about that.

      “Nobody is going to give it back and then stay,” said one of the firm’s employees. “If they give back the money, then they will walk. And they will walk into the arms of AIG’s counterparties.”

      Now the news cycle turns to present a sympathetic picture of the people left to clean up the mess left by the “long-departed souls” who created it.

      Certainly most, if not all, of the people left at AIG do not deserve this. They are being scapegoated. But this was inevitable given the corruption rotting our financial system and government, and yet another reason why bankruptcy was the first and best option for AIG.

      Unless and until the real criminals are brought to heel, expect more of the same.

      Oh, and Geithner and Summers need to go yesterday. They are most directly responsible for allowing this situation to occur, and a liability to the Obama administration that grows larger by the day.

      • Finger Lakes(118083 comments)-
        March 20, 2009 at 2:54 pm

        I still ask daily how letting all these failed companies go bankrupt could be any worse than what’s happening now.

        Rob.

        • jack black(118083 comments)-
          March 20, 2009 at 3:05 pm

          Ya, it would be much worse, mostly for the bankers. Thus, not an option. Bankers learned through 70’s, 80’s, and 90’s how to play the system. Hey, they rule the world by their (elected) proxy’s.

    • kaimu(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 5:01 pm

      ALOHA !!

      I used to work for a far worse company than AIG that was publicly scorned every day of the year, even by AIG execs and employees!

      The I-R-S !!!

      If you want to kill a party then let people know you work for the IRS! HA!!

  28. Bill Cara(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 2:10 pm
  29. davefairtex(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 2:21 pm

    Bill, in your daily review you explained that once you get into a bullish mode, you write puts to pay for calls that you buy. In executing this, I came across some basic questions.

    How far out do you tend to go? I went out only a month. But I wonder, is there some advantage to buying many months in advance? Likewise, I chose strike prices as close to the money as possible. That seemed to make sense, but it also increased my risk of having those puts turn on me.

    • Bill Cara(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 4:44 pm

      Dave,

      You are getting into strategies and tactics that require my knowledge of all factors, which I said I cannot do here.

      • bobbyo(118083 comments)-
        March 20, 2009 at 5:04 pm

        Bill,

        How about some simple directions in trading. To help the community. Just say buy so and so now. Sell so and so now. It would probably save you time in the long run. Just trying to be helpful.
        Bob

        • Dave Hyde(118083 comments)-
          March 20, 2009 at 5:14 pm

          I don’t ever expect, nor do I think any of us should expect buy and sell calls from Bill. I think it opens Bill up to far too much maintenance and possible flak from people (not from you Bob, I just mean from anyone that could potentially be reading this) who misunderstand/can’t position size/can’t manage risk/ etc etc. I cannot see how Bill would have the time or inclication to consider a thankless task like that.

        • alberio(118083 comments)-
          March 20, 2009 at 5:21 pm

          bobbyo
          It’s certainly not my place to answer for Bill, however I think he has been generous beyond belief with his calls and views he shares with us. To ask for more is simply too much to ask. Specific calls like what you are asking for means you should be placing money with him.
          I for one will do just that when/if he eventually gets registered in my place of residence. IMHO.

        • swissrobinson(118083 comments)-
          March 20, 2009 at 5:42 pm

          RE:>How about some simple directions in trading.

          Bobbyo, that sux, and I mean it in a nice way. I’ve come here to learn, to get into the “zone”, not be led by the nose, even if the expert means well.

          Besides, Bill is throwing out some names for us to buy. I’ll be tracking SLW and UXG as core PM holdings once I’m back in the game.

          I didn’t learn these tickers from anywhere else but here!

          And if you’re talking about puts and calls, whats the fun in trading if we can’t raise our skills and knowledge to a higher level.

          Chess master? Bring it on!

      • davefairtex(118083 comments)-
        March 20, 2009 at 5:47 pm

        Bill – You are getting into strategies and tactics that require my knowledge of all factors, which I said I cannot do here.

        I know you cannot tell me which strikes and dates I should buy, because you don’t know my risk profile, and what else my position might hold.

        But here’s the thing. You talk a lot about the timing of when to write options, and buy them, and what kinds of options to write, and that has been very helpful. I feel like I have received a great deal of wisdom from you about that. However, I do not feel very knowledgeable about what sorts of strikes and expirations to use in the different situations.

        I am willing to learn by experimenting, but I was just hoping for a general lesson from the master on strike prices and expirations. Sometimes people ask you questions and amazing things come out, kinda like the one about oil, metals, and gold. That was so helpful! And I figured since today was a quiet day perhaps you might have the time… πŸ™‚

        • Grasshopper(118083 comments)-
          March 20, 2009 at 5:57 pm

          Bill – Well put davefairtex – Bill I hope you’re able to respond without putting you in a compromising situation – just wondering how far out you’re writing calls and selling puts or what the strategy that we should be considering for our own portfolio would be as far as option expiration.

          Thanks again

          • bobbyo(118083 comments)-
            March 20, 2009 at 7:10 pm

            Boy’s,
            My plea for Bill just to tell us when to buy and sell was just me being facetious. I was trying to interprete how Bill must feel with the many outlandish requests he gets. So I decided to just get to the point of what these request are really asking. When should I buy Bill? When should I sell? I am sorry if my intent was misinterrupreted. Probaly should of used some emoticons.

            DavidFairfax and Grasshopper. Bill went into great detail about his option strategy in October or November. You could look in the archives. He did go over timelines too, but of coarse they will change with the ever changing market.
            Bob

          • davefairtex(118083 comments)-
            March 20, 2009 at 7:47 pm

            bobbyo – I was trying to interprete how Bill must feel with the many outlandish requests he gets. So I decided to just get to the point of what these request are really asking. When should I buy Bill? When should I sell?

            Yeah, I bet Bill thought I was asking for specific trades too. That’s on me because I was not clear about what I was looking for. I need to become better at asking questions more clearly.

            Hmm, perhaps my mistake was asking Bill. I should have just asked the group. Why bother the master when all the senior students know this stuff too? Ha.

            So would anyone here care to share what you use when you do one of these “buy call sell put” strategies? 1 month, 2 month, or longer term? Close to the money or far away? I know already the answer depends on circumstances, but perhaps we can draw from the current market situation as the “circumstances.” πŸ™‚

          • garryg(118083 comments)-
            March 20, 2009 at 9:58 pm

            I just recently sold the gg jan 2010 40 call and bought the jan 2010 30 put for a net credit of .25. My pnl increases and decreases in proportion to the movement in the stock. If I hold to expiry I essentially break even between 30 and 40 and profit from any move above 40.

          • dberryclan(118083 comments)-
            March 20, 2009 at 11:02 pm

            Garryg,

            Question?

            I often am in and out of Leaps in stocks i like such as GG calls. My question is, why buy the 2010 put and not something a little shorter in time, such as Sept or Dec?

            DB

          • garryg(118083 comments)-
            March 20, 2009 at 11:17 pm

            No reason in particular. I just wanted to buy a cheap synthetic position, I intend to close it out long before expiration.

          • Bill Cara(118083 comments)-
            March 20, 2009 at 10:55 pm

            davefairtex, there are lots of options traders here. You need to start a thread and work with it a bit. Most of the time I’m just busy.

  30. Craig(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 2:33 pm

    It’s also why personal responsibility and doing the right thing, no matter what, is paramount.

    1. You have to live with yourself.
    2. The people you rip off have to *let* you live with yourself.
    3. Never forget your job is to SERVE people.

    It would surprise everyone here to find out how many we *trust* KNOW this, but do not, and fail to act in ways that reveal this sad fact.

  31. 2nd_ave(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 2:33 pm

    moral support πŸ˜‰ 20% of allocation…

  32. bigwad1(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 2:39 pm

    Who would of ever thought a year ago that you’d be able to buy a share of a financial stock like your were ordering off the dollar menu at Mickey Dees?
    It’s time to eliminate the FED and it’s many banksters.

  33. SiO2(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 2:42 pm

    For those falling asleep today, Bernanke is speaking at noon, hopefully that will wake things up.

    The AIG mothership (jpeg): http://2.bp.blogspot.com/_iV5yDiKxCdk/ScOXeYPfj0I/

    Re. AIG bonuses, who would want to work for that company now anyway?

    • Ron Sen(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 2:58 pm

      In medicine we have ‘tachyphylaxis’ which is an attenuated dose-response effect with repeated exposure. My mother used to have an expression “he’s like dog poop, he’s everywhere.” (Maybe a little more colorful). That summarizes my opinion of his flat-earth approach…doesn’t make me right.

  34. teamonfuego(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 2:50 pm

    bought more at 33.42.

    • teamonfuego(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 3:16 pm

      Just for clarity’s sake, my thinking behind being short financials (other than them mostly being insolvent of course) is that:

      (1) the XLF etf is bumping up against resistance from the November 21 lows and can’t bust through it with conviction.
      (2) the AIG bonus scandal and subsequent 90% tax that was approved has left banks in the unenviable position of wanting capital, needing capital, but not wanting to deal with the heavy regulation government assisted capital comes with
      (3) the Treasury secretary’s issues will ultimately cause his resignation, which will add to the instability of the marketplace

      • jack black(118083 comments)-
        March 20, 2009 at 3:21 pm

        I would add that the euphoria around financials reminds me the events circa 9/22/08 when everything spiked (including gold) on TARP passing. I thought then, it could not be a top just couple of days after a bottom? Well, it was. It was an expensive top, too.

      • Finger Lakes(118083 comments)-
        March 20, 2009 at 5:23 pm

        Geithner’s resignation would be great. I get the feeling he’ll have to be dragged out kicking and screaming though.

        Rob.

  35. barry(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 2:59 pm

    If we are having fun now, wait until ACORN is empowered to do the US census while we watch the never ending AIG bonus story go on and on and on.

    • Craig(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 3:12 pm

      Acorn will not be empowered to do any such thing.

      My former Governor, Gary Locke, a top notch guy, will be doing this job.
      He is as straight up as they get. Note his approval with all of the committee responsible.

      There is a reason.

      • bluesky(118083 comments)-
        March 20, 2009 at 4:44 pm

        “Acorn will not be empowered to do any such thing.

        My former Governor, Gary Locke, a top notch guy, will be doing this job.
        He is as straight up as they get.”

        I disagree. Gary Locke used to be my Governor as well. His biggest accomplishment was building state-of-the-art Seahawks Stadium with state taxpayer’s debt and GIVING it and all the future revenues & concessions to Mr. Paul Allen (the Microsoft Billionaire). The democrats subsequently promoted him as a possible presidential candidate until he laid an egg by sweating and stuttering through the democratic response to one of Bush’s State of the Union speeches.

  36. jack black(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 3:01 pm

    FAZ triggered my stop buy at open, TZA very close to do so too (1 point). We will see what the next week brings (stop sell will be in place).

    • jack black(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 3:13 pm

      TZA just triggered a stop buy. Buckling for a ride (not sure how long though). This my first (non-paper) try of Dr. Elder’s old triple screen system. I wonder if it will work?

  37. dr.cosa(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 3:06 pm

    lots of indications that $960 is an important level to close above in the short term for this run to show its serious.

    the gold stocks are stalled out from where they were yesterday which is good imho because typically they would fall if gold failed to keep going up or just consolidated. its still early, but i like what im seeing in the heavy weights in barrick, newmont and goldcorp. if gold stays in the mid-50’s and they can hold on to yesterday’s gains on good volume we are back in business.

    if they start to slide into the close we may have a ways to go..at least for the miners.

  38. Chickenpookie(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 3:10 pm

    Stopped out @$16.96 for a 28% gain, reaching my goal. Off to run errands now, good luck all!!!

    • jack black(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 3:16 pm

      You played it well. I was stopped much earlier, which made me upset a lot, but decided not to chase it. The art of stops still eludes me.

  39. Bev(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 3:14 pm

    Can’t get through to my local branch. Just wanted to check something about shorting. This will be my first time shorting. All I have to do is pull up an entry window, enter the stock I ant to short ,the price at, then hit sell short. Then when I want to cover I hit the buy to cover button when I am ready to cover. Is this correct? Also unless Scottrade informs me I can cover at my own discretion. Correct?

  40. Craig(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 3:22 pm

    Bev, Yes, and you can also use limit orders, etc. on both short sale and cover buy.

    I’ve never had them interfere.

    • Bev(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 3:23 pm

      Craig

      Thank you!

  41. Mackinaw(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 3:24 pm

    I didn’t trade the last 2 pullbacks to the rising 200-day moving average and, after today’s “trading reminders” from Bill, I sure am not going to miss this one. Only thing that would prevent me is all the noise, confusion, angst, and opinion sorrounding the $. The July-present uptrend is still intact until the December low is taken out (great stop) and the upside target is clear. Entered a half-position in UUP. It’s a great diversifier, anyway. I will add to the position if it continues as I have visualized it πŸ˜›

    http://stockcharts.com/h-sc/ui?s=UUP&p=D&st=2008-0

  42. Chickenpookie(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 3:35 pm

    Placing bid @ $15.75, in case Bernanke left his cough lozenges at the office.

  43. Mackinaw(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 3:55 pm

    What does $1 Trillion look like?

    http://www.pagetutor.com/trillion/index.html

    • jack black(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 4:07 pm

      Looks impressive, but I made a rough mental calculation on my drive to work this AM and it came out slightly more than a measly 3 grand per capita in US. Did I make a mistake?

      • proudPapa(118083 comments)-
        March 20, 2009 at 4:24 pm

        You are right jack, but that includes babies and retirees. Looked at another way, with avg 2.59 people per household, about 150,480,100 households, it actually works out to $3660/person or about $9,500 per household. Average household income is about $50K, so $1 trillion accounts for almost 20% of annual total income.

        If we assume that $1 trillion eventually needs to be paid back, with interest, that would seem to represent a non-trivial burden on citizens. And then consider that the deficit is to be closer to $2t.

        http://quickfacts.census.gov/qfd/states/00000.html

        • davefairtex(118083 comments)-
          March 20, 2009 at 4:43 pm

          Wiki tells us there are 138M taxpayers in the US. If we assume we will pay the 1T via income tax, your share of $1 Trillion depends on how much you make.

          The top 5% income earners (AGI > $137K) pay 57% of the taxes in the US. Let’s say you’re in that bracket. Your share of $1T comes to … are you ready?

          $82,608

          The bottom 50% income earners (AGI < $30k) pay 3.3% of the taxes in the US. Your share is $119.

          The numbers really surprised me.

          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Taxation_in_the_Unite

          • Finger Lakes(118083 comments)-
            March 20, 2009 at 5:45 pm

            Inequality in the income tax system is the main reason we keep getting lousy government. When nearly 50% of the people pay no taxes and actually still get money back how do you think they will vote? For more responsible government? For a smaller national debt? Or for more goodies?

            Just one example is someone we know who paid about 4K in total taxes including FICA and property taxes and got 11K back from Uncle Sugar. So, how does that 7K gift change her voting behavior?

            Everyone should pay at least some tax in my view.

            Rob.

          • jack black(118083 comments)-
            March 20, 2009 at 5:48 pm

            “Let’s say you’re in that bracket”

            How did you know?
            But seriously, that is sobering. This why there is no other way than inflation to weasel out from these debts IMHO. There “only” issue is how much more deflation before all that inflation? People have wide rage estimates 2009-2012.

        • Finger Lakes(118083 comments)-
          March 20, 2009 at 5:36 pm

          Now just multiply the $3660 by 12 to get the actual amount each person has promised to these financial institutions. As of March 18th The government has promised 12.85 Trillion to various companies and people with around 4 Trillion of the total already spent.

          The national debt before we started this madness last spring was at 9.6 trillion. Paying out everything we promised will more than double the National Debt.

          How can our children have a future with our debt well in excess of our entire GDP?

          Rob.

    • Freedom57(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 7:22 pm

      I like to bounce some thoughts off my youngest son occasionally, and last night sent him some info on the public reaction to the miniscule bonus payments to AIG personnel (miniscule in relation to the total AIG bailout amount and in relation to many other monetary obligations to be borne by the American taxpayer.) He’s a psychology Ph.D. candidate in an area known as the Neurotransmitters and Behaviour Lab, and does research on brain receptors that I can’t even begin to explain.

      Here’s some of his response, lightly edited to remove extraneous material to this thread:

      I think people don’t undertand the difference between “million” and “billion”. In fact, humans, among other animals, quantify things on a natural log scale (independent of actual amount…if you talk about “dollars”, it’s different than talking about “cents”). It’s crazy…right from perception (and neural coding of stimuli) right up to what people self-report. Basically what that means is that a billion is only 3 times bigger than a million. And a million is only 3 times bigger than a thousand. And a thousand is only 3 times bigger than a dollar.

      Humans (and other animals) simply just have a horrible representation of magnitude. It’s effective in some senses (Who cares about the difference between 180 billion and 181 billion? at least we can sort-of-comprehend so much), but leads to horrible mis-representation of what is happening.

      Ever notice how the bailouts are never represented as a per-capita amount?
      “180 billion from all of us? Okay.”
      “$600? F*** no! That’s MY money!”

      I swear that an employer would get better productivity walking around with a stack of $10 bills, giving them out one at a time for particular instances of productivity than they would with a general raise system. “Good Job, Johnson! Here’s $10. Keep up the good work!”. If this happens once a week, it’s like a $0.25/hr raise that only is given when productivity is high (and pays for a $2 coffee each work day). Some quick math and you soon realize that’s approaching the bailout amount in one year. You see the irony?

      • Craig(118083 comments)-
        March 20, 2009 at 7:34 pm

        “I swear that an employer would get better productivity walking around with a stack of $10 bills, giving them out one at a time for particular instances of productivity than they would with a general raise system. “Good Job, Johnson! Here’s $10. Keep up the good work!”. If this happens once a week, it’s like a $0.25/hr raise that only is given when productivity is high (and pays for a $2 coffee each work day). Some quick math and you soon realize that’s approaching the bailout amount in one year. You see the irony?”

        Absolutely, proven over and over by B.F. Skinner. Just ask your son. That’s part of the problem with quantity. Our brains are rewarded by enough. Too much? Same reward in our brains. Maybe we learn greed?
        What an awesome field of study.

      • Finger Lakes(118083 comments)-
        March 20, 2009 at 7:59 pm

        “I think people don’t understand the difference between “million” and “billion””

        So true. If people did understand they’d be camped out at the doors of the recipients of 1000X more of our tax money (160 Billion) from AIG than the 165 Million the executives were supposed to get.

        But instead we get Government and Media goading us into despising our richer neighbors essentially making average Americans into the criminals.

        Alot of what’s happening seems to be right out of Orwell’s 1984.

        Rob.

        • casey(118083 comments)-
          March 20, 2009 at 10:51 pm

          Rob

          Did you know, what is happening right now is being written as the Sequel to 1984

          πŸ˜‰

    • casey(118083 comments)-
      March 21, 2009 at 1:01 am

      I like this illustration of the difference better

      http://xkcd.com/558/

      πŸ™‚

      • barry(118083 comments)-
        March 21, 2009 at 10:16 am

        Puplava’s first hour broadcast this week mentions that Ferman told the Senate Committee legislating Cap and Trade that it will cost the US economy 2 Trillion. Does anyone have a link?

      • swissrobinson(118083 comments)-
        March 21, 2009 at 11:28 am

        RE:>I like this illustration of the difference better

        OH that is nasty!

  44. BillySundance(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 4:01 pm

    Was looking to go long yesterday but prices were too frothy. I am in on the pullback as I think there has been an overreaction to potential new carbon restrictions.

    I am also impressed by ACI’s purchase of the Jacob’s Ranch Powder River Basin coal mine from Rio Tinto (which is being forced to sell off quality assets due to the large debt load).

    • photogray(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 4:25 pm

      Billy, am curious regarding your timing. No disrespect intended. My timing is ….not good. I am finding that good entry is key to a good trade in this market. Just wondering the rationale. Natural gas inventories are at higher than year norms, every TA parameter- even the ones I don’t know how to use!- that stockcharts has shows high position and slight weakening. At least on the daily charts. Weekly at Stockcharts looks more promising. Its admittedly a great earning company. Better than MEE that I currently hold. Trying to learn not only by my trades but by you all here.
      Peace from North Puget Sound

    • Dr. Strangelove(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 4:54 pm

      Billy –

      I’m also watching BTU as I like its mix of U.S. and Australian operations and has the best safety record in the business. I visited ACI’s Black Thunder Mine in Wyoming (PBR) in 2007 and was impressed with not only the immense scale of this, the largest mine in the U.S., but the efficiency of operations and reclamation of the land. Had a new drag line under construction there when I visited and one prototype frontloader from Japan that was the largest ever made (but ACI thought was inefficient; shovel arm kept breaking too). Lots of diesel used and provided by on-site contractor to run the real world monster trucks driven by at least one pregnant woman. Should be some synergies found with acquisition of Rio’s Jacob’s Ranch mine along side Coal Creek and Black Thunder.

      Rail line bottle necks may open up heading East, allowing increased deliveries, now that dry goods are in the tank. Spring is not the ideal time to buy coal miners but who knows (elbow season) … Congress holds a strong hand right now but may be reluctant to monkey with the energy banana. King Gore has no clothes and it ain’t pretty!

      Good luck.

      • BillySundance(118083 comments)-
        March 20, 2009 at 7:15 pm

        Regarding timing – my consideration are longer term in nature (rather than short term indicators). Amongst my considerations are:

        1) U.S. Coal is highly sensitive to $USD exchange rates. While I am not certain that the $USD has topped for good, I believe its strength will moderate throughout the year which should start to make U.S. coal more attractive and help to stabilize prices. In that regard it is a hedge against the $USD.

        2) I think there has been an overreaction to the Obama administration’s plans for carbon cap regulations. In the end, excessive costs related to carbon cap and trade schemes will have to be funded by higher costs to end users – the electric ratepayers. With the economy trying to regain footing right now, I think the administration will realize they walk a fine line between encouraging clean power and making electricity rates unnafforable and overly burdensome.

        3) ACI’s purchase of the Jacob’s Ranch mine from Rio Tinto means that ACI and BTU will have a duopoly on Wyoming Powder River Basin coal which should result in greater pricing power in the long run.

        4) The credit crunch has (likely) caused coal purchasers to scale back purchasing activity and moderate inventories. Once credit returns, these same companies will have to resume their normal course of purchasing which could result in large price reversals.

        5) From a technical standpoint ACI crashed to the 11/20/08 low of $10.43 then rocketed up to over $20 by 1/6/09 only to crash back below $12 on 3/2/09. In the last few weeks daily volatility has stabilized and for the last week or so, the stock fluctuated between $13-14.25 which is a fairly narrow range.

        6) We ain’t gonna stop burning coal for a long time. New nuclear plants are still a decade away. Wind and solar technologies, while good supplemental power sources, are not an adequate substitute for baseload electricity generation.

        • BillySundance(118083 comments)-
          March 20, 2009 at 7:20 pm

          2.5% dividend is not too shabby for a coal producer either – although I do acknowledge that no dividend is a “sure thing”.

          • tradingmyChips(118083 comments)-
            March 20, 2009 at 8:07 pm

            Will look to buy on Monday,if it doesn’t blast off. Looks like it could be a good one.Tks for Heads up.

            Head and Shoulders Bottom

            Event Date: Mar 19, 2009
            Opportunity Type: Intermediate-Term Bullish
            Close Price: $15.53
            Target Price Range: $16.90 – $17.60

            Price Period: Daily
            Volume: 10,660,370
            Pattern Duration: 23 days
            Inbound Trend Duration: 27 days

            TMC

        • Dr. Strangelove(118083 comments)-
          March 20, 2009 at 7:50 pm

          Billy –

          To add to your long term view, USAF has recently completed testing all its aircraft on fuel made from coal (CTL) with 100% success and, as a top U.S. consumer of fuel, is seeking permission from Congress to sign a long-term contract for production of said fuel to be produced in the U.S. for national security reasons. If this happens, CTL industry will become viable (See Sansol) and, here’s the kicker, put coal’s hand in oil’s pocket. USAF knows the U.S. is the ‘Saudi Arabia of Coal’ and CTL is proven tech since WWII. USAF is working to establish emissions sequestration as part of any contract.

          Can you imagine Congress just saying Yes to a long-term contract for enhanced national security, less dependence on foreign oil, huge savings fueling U.S. Armed Forces, and a new energy industry (CTL) to boost employment? All we need are Polosi and Reid, no doubt owned by the oil lobby, to get out of the way!

          [Edit: Sequestration not a proven tech but pilot plants testing various forms of clean emissions underway in China (with BTU), Australia, Canada, Germany (?), and perhaps a few other places. U.S. pilot project was cancelled when Bush and Congress got in a wrangle over funding last year]

          • BillySundance(118083 comments)-
            March 20, 2009 at 8:42 pm

            Strangelove

            I think there are many paradoxes being thrown around in regards to the idea that “building our green energy industry” is equivalent to “reducing our dependence on foreign oil”.

            I would argue that the best thing we could do to decrease our dependence on foreign oil is to tax the crap out of it so people stop overusing it – and use that extra revenue to support the green energy industry. Unfortunately, we have a huge dying beast of an automobile industry and horribly overbuilt suburban sprawl, so the taxing oil idea doesn’t get much support.

          • Dr. Strangelove(118083 comments)-
            March 21, 2009 at 1:32 am

            Billy –

            I would agree that ‘green’ and ‘reducing foreign oil’ aren’t the same but that coal isn’t going away nor is the auto industry. CAFE regs starting in ’75 have had many unintended consequences including the emergence of Asian automakers in strategic states. Did you know Toyota’s North American headquarters and design center is just outside Detroit?

            Over 50% of electricity in U.S. comes from coal and U.S. is the Saudi Arabia of coal. Make it clean and convert it to liquid makes sense to me and the USAF. Wind, solar, ocean wave, thermal, soy, nor switch grass combined can supply the soon to be re-emerging industrial base of this country once the financial mess is resolved. But, don’t get me wrong, I’m all for renewables and a clean environment.

            Cheers.

  45. teamonfuego(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 4:07 pm

    Neil was my mom’s favorite singer. This is in my head today for some reason. Maybe its the rush to gold because of the Fed’s moves…or maybe its because we’re all striving for someone in the financial industry to have a heart full of it…

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FFNqj3RGUuM

    • Bill Cara(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 5:01 pm

      Neil’s father Scott was well known in Canada as a national sports writer. Neil grew up in Omeemee Ontario, nearby Cavan where I lived. Scott and I would often sit together on the dayliner train that went into Toronto in the morning, returning at the end of the day. I never met Neil as he had moved away with his Mom several years before I moved to the area. But we all knew some of his songs were about that place.

      • teamonfuego(118083 comments)-
        March 20, 2009 at 5:20 pm

        That’s pretty cool. How old was Neil when you were riding the train with his dad? Did he ever talk about him?

  46. Chickenpookie(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 4:11 pm

    Cancel TNA, bought BC @$3.15

  47. bigwad1(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 4:40 pm

    Our local news is reporting Alliant Energy will raise rates 18.1 %.
    12% now…the rest upon regulatory approval!
    Property tax assessments were just raised 17%.
    Now they just passed another 1% local sales option tax.
    To be continued…………….

    • Finger Lakes(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 5:38 pm

      If all prices inflate except wages and jobs(unless you’re connected) where does that leave the average person?

      Rob.

  48. 2nd_ave(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 5:04 pm

    waiting for QT to weigh in on EW

  49. Ron Sen(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 5:11 pm

    I don’t think we can ask Bill to do more than he has (disclosing his RSI777 methodology)

    Identifying some edge and repetitively exploiting it is what all of us try to do. Of course, we tend to blow ourselves up because we lack the mental fortitude or proper psychology to follow through (plan your trade, trade your plan)…

    Today, I saw AAPL as a double top with risks not only technical (tails up) but also fundamental according to the unknown health risks re: founder Jobs.

    So I bought a few in the money puts, and am living with the results (okay so far)…but I was really tempted (as always) to destroy my analysis because of fear of loss. Fear is there every day, and as traders we have to deal with it via position sizing and stops. Manage the fear if not embrace it.

    Damn, it’s a hard game. But the clowns running the show don’t have the fear…that’s a problem.

  50. TN_blogger(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 5:39 pm

    http://www.voteronpaul.com/newsDetail.php?Glenn-Be

    The above link is Glen Beck talking to Penn Teller…hope spelled correctly, and is about the two party system and being labeled a terrorist if you are independent.

    And this is a written response from Independents:

    http://www.voteronpaul.com/newsDetail.php?Missouri

    • TN_blogger(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 5:40 pm

      http://www.voteronpaul.com/newsDetail.php?Missouri

      A written response from Independents

    • Chickenpookie(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 6:53 pm

      “The above link is Glen Beck talking to Penn Teller…hope spelled correctly, and is about the two party system and being labeled a terrorist if you are independent.”

      How about the Declaration of Independence, does this document represent an act of terrorism? I suppose from the British point of view the founders of this country were terrorists? How about the Beltway Criminals and their NY counterparts? In this country, criminal acts such as attacking the world trade center are labeled terrorism. So why wouldn’t a criminal act perpetrated against the economy also be labeled terrorism.

      No, I think the Beltway Criminals and their Wall Street counterparts are the real terrorists.

      Begging for forgiveness based upon a patent on ignorance is not an acceptable alternative to asking permission. The Beltway Criminals never show the face of truth because they have no concept of the meaning. They have no morals, scruples, or ethics.

      • Finger Lakes(118083 comments)-
        March 20, 2009 at 7:12 pm

        Interesting how all eyes are drawn to executive bonuses while the beltway criminals and Wall Street Bosses sneak out the back door with the loot and our freedom.

        It definitely seems like a calculated smokescreen. Look how effective their tactics are, they have incited mobs of angry people and reporters to camp out in front of their offices and home.

        Where are the angry mobs demanding justice from Washington? Why are people so easily turned against their richer neighbor? Maybe most people are sheep.

        Rob.

      • Grym(118083 comments)-
        March 21, 2009 at 12:07 am
  51. Ron Sen(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 5:40 pm

    Has a good ratio for speculative juice:

    XLV x XLP divided by XLK x XLY

    healthcare and staples versus tech and consumer discretionary

    shortcut = VP versus KY
    VP = Cheney (conservative)
    KY = well, KY

  52. David(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 5:45 pm

    $5.15 is close enough to the limit price of $5 at which I wanted to buy 1000 shares. So I just bought them at $5.15.

  53. kaimu(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 5:56 pm

    ALOHA !!

    The POT calling the kettle black!

    Here is Bernanke lecturing us all on TOO BIG TO FAIL!

    Bernanke: We Must Fix “Too Big to Fail” Problem- Reuters

    The United States needs a safer way to shut down large nonbank financial firms without destabilizing the entire financial system, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke said on Friday.(more)

    Oh yeah, but don’t apply that logic to the US FED, the US GOVERNMENT or any BANKS!

  54. SiO2(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 5:57 pm

    Re. IWM 41 Calls and 42 Puts yesterday’s in-the-money straddle. 42Ps trading at $1.80, position is profitable.

    Note that max pain is much higher than current prices. Max Pain was useless last month and right now is proving useless again.

    • SiO2(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 8:18 pm

      For anyone who followed the expected ROI chart for the 41-42 IWM straddle yesterday, the chart below shows how it ended up. The curves are the projections from yesterday, the red circles show actual ROI today at 2PM and at 4PM today.

      http://4.bp.blogspot.com/_iV5yDiKxCdk/ScP4N3gjQPI/

      This was a very quiet OpEx day. If it had not been, perhaps results could have been much better.

  55. Corner Stone(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 5:59 pm

    Falling right into 2nd’s wheelhouse?

    • Corner Stone(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 6:03 pm

      in FAS @ 5.03

      • Corner Stone(118083 comments)-
        March 20, 2009 at 6:06 pm

        volume on FAS just went through the roof when it crossed under 5.00

        • bobbyo(118083 comments)-
          March 20, 2009 at 6:10 pm

          That is because the stops are being taken out. There could be an up ward spike if the decline is not news driven.

      • Corner Stone(118083 comments)-
        March 20, 2009 at 7:41 pm

        out @ 5.25
        Left some on the table it seems but don’t want to hold a 3x over the weekend.
        Not complaining about it.

        • Corner Stone(118083 comments)-
          March 20, 2009 at 8:06 pm

          I’m really not complaining now! FAS @ 5.00

  56. kaimu(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 6:05 pm

    ALOHA !!

    This is what S&P earnings look like adjusted for inflation! Come to think of it the DOW would take a 80% scalp if there was no inflation. What does that say?

    Link: http://www.chartoftheday.com/20090320.htm?T

    In essence if A+B=C, then B+A=C … hence inflation is the “be all-end all” cure for US DEBT and plummeting stock markets and real estate! We were all raised on inflation … MORE BLOAT PLEASE-E-E!!

    • davefairtex(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 6:17 pm

      Kaimu do you have any charts on an S&P 500 (or DJIA) ex inflation? My mind boggles on how bad that might look.

  57. 2nd_ave(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 6:33 pm

    set yesterday, just for the heck of it

  58. davefairtex(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 6:35 pm

    So today while everything else has suffered, silver is up $0.29. Why is this? I do not know. Gold today has been fast asleep, perhaps the man responsible for pounding gold didn’t show up for work.

  59. David(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 6:36 pm

    If I see FAS at $4, then instead of buying more of it, I’ll start shorting FAZ at that point.

    • 2nd_ave(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 6:50 pm

      David/VB- Some of the same traders who couldn’t hit the buy button on FAS fast enough on Wednesday/Thursday are the ones bailing today. It’s easy to tell. Just put yourself in their shoes. If I’d bought at Wednesday’s close/Thursday’s open (in the 7+ range), thinking the sector was going to take off, it would take a strong stomach to watch a break of 5 today. Which I think explains some of the increased volume when that occurred. That represents opportunity to you and me. And why emotions have no place in trading/gaming (other than to allow you to empathize with the other side of the trade).

      • vanillabean(118083 comments)-
        March 20, 2009 at 7:45 pm

        Some of the same traders who couldn’t hit the buy button on FAS fast enough on Wednesday/Thursday are the ones bailing today.

        2nd,

        Yes that makes sense to me. Yep, I am going to hold it all through the weekend and consider this a pull back.

        guess I still believe in the easter bunny and more Wabbits coming out the Obama hat –

        The Wizard of OZ is behind the “Fed” is so powerful no one knows for sure who they are. The fed will not give up those banks without a big fight.

        It seems to me that until we know who the Fed is, we can’t really get rid of them can we?

        vb

        • Ramses(118083 comments)-
          March 20, 2009 at 8:16 pm

          “The greatest trick the Devil ever pulled was to convince the world he didn’t exist”

    • 2nd_ave(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 6:59 pm

      David- btw, I don’t think you’ll see 4…I would really be surprised.

      • David(118083 comments)-
        March 20, 2009 at 7:07 pm

        “David- btw, I don’t think you’ll see 4…I would really be surprised.”

        The market is a place where we get continually surprised. So I figured I should always have a plan even for a situation that I would find highly surprising. But your belief in FAS being near a short-term bottom now will make my weekend a bit brighter — thanks! πŸ™‚

        • bsi87(118083 comments)-
          March 20, 2009 at 7:54 pm

          FAS March max pain 5 April 4.

          FAZ March 40, April 40.

          I use max pain as an indicator of price direction and magnitude, not absolute price levels (although sometimes it works out that way).

  60. bigwad1(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 6:50 pm

    For years, there was no visual evidence of the first official dunk in a women’s college game. But WSJ’s Reed Albergotti tracked down the long-lost videotape of Georgeann Wells’s history-making moment.

    http://online.wsj.com/video/at-long-last-a-look-at

  61. 2nd_ave(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 6:54 pm

    • Mark Barry(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 6:57 pm

      On the same page 2nd- In @ 23.94 and FAS @ 5.08

  62. 2nd_ave(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 6:56 pm

    holding up on higher-than-average volume…

  63. kaimu(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 7:19 pm

    ALOHA !!

    Interesting analogy of CONFIDENCE!

    “Confidence grows at the rate a coconut tree grows, It falls as the rate a coconut falls.” – Montek Ahluwalia

    Who is Montek?

    Montek Singh Ahluwalia (born November 24, 1943) is the Deputy Chairman of the Planning Commission, India. He was appointed to hold the post on June 16, 2004 by the ruling UPA government. He was the first Director of the Independent Evaluation Office, International Monetary Fund (IMF). He assumed office on July 9, 2001.

    • casey(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 10:50 pm

      awesome quote

      Thanks Kaimu

  64. proudPapa(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 7:33 pm

    We’ve discussed gunning stops in general on this board, but in light of the above discussion about FAS breaking 5, I started wondering how valid TA is in general on the ultra 2x and 3x ETF’s.

    For example, if you look at XGD.TO, it’s way above it’s 50DMA so support is a ways down if it corrects, and the 200DMA is even further below. So a bullish chart if I’m not mistaken.

    Now look at HGU.TO, it’s bumping up against it’s 200DMA with the 50DMA just below. Looking at this chart you would think there is major resistance at the 200DMA, but the underlying, XGD.TO has no such resistance.

    This disconnect is repeated across pretty much any ultra/underlying I’ve looked at. So to what extent can we rely on technicals of the ultras? I

  65. QT(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 7:56 pm

    Posted this early today on Thursday’s blog. Be interesting how today’s candle affects it.

    Everyone enjoy your weekend.

  66. QT(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 7:59 pm

    XLF will close below its weekly trend line… Next week might turn out to be a
    “FAZtastic week !

    • 2nd_ave(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 8:23 pm

      “Next week might turn out to be a FAZtastic week!”

      And for those leaving early for the CTAB conference, have a tanFAStic week!

      • Craig(118083 comments)-
        March 20, 2009 at 10:21 pm

        LOL! No guessing which side of this trade you’re on 2nd….:>)

  67. Finger Lakes(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 8:05 pm

    Speaking about FAZ, did anyone short that puppy when it got to 104 a couple of weeks ago. I missed it since I was on vacation. It’s crazy how much has happened in the few weeks I was gone.

    Rob.

    • jack black(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 9:29 pm

      I tried but shares were not available to short at TDATD.
      They also forcibly covered my TZA shorts at a loss.
      I would not recommend doing that, at least with TDATD.

  68. bsi87(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 8:06 pm

    long at 11.78. Put a buy stop above the 3 PM price.

    April max pain 17.50

    do your own homework.

  69. Freedom57(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 8:09 pm

    US: 1085, -41 from last week, -699 from last year;
    Canada: 159, -61 from last week, -169 from last year.
    http://investor.shareholder.com/bhi/rig_counts/rc_

    • alberio(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 8:16 pm

      Don’t take the Cdn #’s at face value.
      It’s spring breakup, and the numbers always fall off very hard this time of year. The true test will be how many go back to work after breakup. I suspect it will be very ugly.

  70. Luggie(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 8:09 pm

    This one up ~40% this week. Almost double usual volumes today. Been under on this one a long time as I am not a trader, but might be a good one for traders in the next number of days. Mortgage rates gave up a bit today, but seeing rate changes here at the end of the day – should be heading back to 4.75 (no points)on the 30 year – best to select a provider and at risk of a ~$300+ appraisal be set to go once the rates (read mortgage prices) come to you – sound familiar to other things we learn here. Happy Trading.

  71. bsi87(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 8:15 pm

    10 day ATR 12.90.

    setting a couple sell limit orders at today’s close + 12.90 and the 2nd at close 25.80.

    Can’t be at the keyboard as much so I have to pull the trigger a bit differently.

  72. davefairtex(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 8:16 pm

    Today I had my first “max pain” experience. One week back, I wrote some Apache March 65 calls against some APA that I own. Today, APA started the day at 67 and my options were severely under water, but then APA was dutifully pounded down today to trade around 65. It rallied a bit, but then literally 10 minutes before market close, APA dropped from 65.25 to 64.75 and stayed there until close. And those calls I wrote expired worthless. Yay! I checked the max-pain site, and the number it gave for APA? 65.

    • bobbyo(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 8:29 pm

      Max Joy! Dave maybe you should share your option strategies with us.
      Bob

      • davefairtex(118083 comments)-
        March 20, 2009 at 9:27 pm

        bobbyo – Max Joy! Dave maybe you should share your option strategies with us.

        Hmm. I’m not certain if your posting is sincere or facetious…

        • bobbyo(118083 comments)-
          March 21, 2009 at 12:13 am

          LOL, I will keep you guessing.
          Bob

  73. Chickenpookie(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 8:19 pm

    “Stocks Fall, Endangering Second Week of Gains- AP

    Wall Street pulled back Friday as traders collected some profits and sent financial shares down again. After starting the day mixed stocks veered lower in the afternoon, threatening what would be the market’s first two-week gain in close to a year.”

    Notice the use of the word “trader”….

  74. QT(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 8:26 pm

    Someone ran a wave count on some software near the close of today. He thinks things are just warming up [as in droooooooooping].

    http://dl.getdropbox.com/u/312885/SPX%20warming%20

    Note the picture of the target area on the right.

    • Craig(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 8:43 pm

      Or as Dave Landry says, a persistent downtrend.
      Also, if you pullback from the chart linked above a few months, that slope suddenly gets more like the agony of defeat than the thrill of victory and that witch hat gets squished like the Wicked Witch of the West.

      Thanks Dr. Ron. Look Ma, no neurotransmitters!

    • Foz(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 8:46 pm

      QT, what is that focus area indicating? There are no legends with which to read the graphical data.

      • QT(118083 comments)-
        March 20, 2009 at 9:02 pm

        Foz

        I know…. never could get an answer for that. But I take it the shaded curve inside the box is the target area and the more pronounce the curve is the higher the probability of reaching it. This is not my creation so I am guessing so to speak. I wouldn’t trade off it but keep it in mind if you are a “fellow waver”.
        The bears took a licking this week and they now believe because of the XLF close today the market is back in the downward channel. Today’s close may give that storm cloud [see my previous post above for pics]candle print last night legitimacy.

        Let “the wave” be with you! πŸ™‚

    • jack black(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 9:38 pm

      I guess it shows target 600-650 at the end of March? But how one can trust something like this?
      My best guess is pullback to 740-750 IF this bear rally has stem left. 650 and below IF 800 was a top. Not sure how to predict which. Time will tell. Can someone with good handle of support levels chime in?

      • dberryclan(118083 comments)-
        March 20, 2009 at 9:57 pm

        It would not surprise me to see the recent favorite headline mon am, “Markets drop with Renewed Bank concerns!”

        Rally has been fun. Hope gold goes sky high this year!

      • proudPapa(118083 comments)-
        March 20, 2009 at 10:04 pm

        My simplistic view of support/resistance lines.

        • David(118083 comments)-
          March 20, 2009 at 10:27 pm

          Good chart, proudPapa. A pullback to 750 in S&P would look just about right at this point, even if this rally is destined to proceed.

        • Craig(118083 comments)-
          March 20, 2009 at 10:30 pm

          Hmmm. Notice it was repelled at your trendline, the top B band, and 800 resistance, the Trinity.

          We should see some support at 741-755, but there’s still a larger trend and some will want to see 666 tested. “We’re on a mission from God” Jake and Elwood Blues.

  75. Seamus(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 8:42 pm
    • loannetter(118083 comments)-
      March 21, 2009 at 4:55 am

      Seamus, a drive-by is called for when your transaction indicates low risk factors. The preliminary research by the appraiser reveals quite a lot about a property. They have access to listing photos from years past and tax records about the building details, permitted additions/ renovations sales history etc and ditto for comparable sales used to establish current market value. Much like a snapshot in time! Banks like them because they are cheaper but sometimes the underwriter will call for a full appraisal after the fact. If your lender appreciates you and your locale the appraisal type is just box checking.

  76. proudPapa(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 9:47 pm

    Gee, where have I heard that before? This article actually starts out pretty dire and realistic, but ends it on a sweet note. That sweet note must be mandated somewhere…

    http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20090320/pl_nm/us_obama

  77. Seamus(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 10:23 pm

    Provided as information only.

    COTS TIMER

    FRIDAY, MARCH 20, 2009

    Signs of Bottom? Wrong-Way Traders May Have Started Capitulation

    http://cotstimer.blogspot.com/

    • jack black(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 10:48 pm

      I used to follow COT, but failed to develop a trading system. I’m not sure I trust COT trader. I never fully grasped his system. He had some bad losses on same trades when I followed him a year ago or so.

  78. bsi87(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 10:38 pm

    http://decisionpoint.com/ChartSpotliteFiles/090320

    I’d like to read Carl.

    But I like to read Mike Kahn. Sumthin for everyone.

    http://online.barrons.com/article/SB12373325673386

    • jack black(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 11:03 pm

      Carl is very good and correct most of the time. BTW, he is planning on great depression 2.

      Kahn’s analysis is not that original, I figured out that much myself and many other bloggers said the same thing.

      He said: “Unless trading takes the market significantly lower by week’s end, the Standard & Poor’s 500 will have a pair of long-term bullish events under its belt.”

      Basically, we don’t know what will happen next week.

      However, my sentiment indicator are warning of a major top.

      Also, small investors bought a lot on a dip today. I expect more bleeding on Monday.

      • Babybear(118083 comments)-
        March 21, 2009 at 4:03 pm

        “Also, small investors bought a lot on a dip today. I expect more bleeding on Monday.”

        Jack, for my learning purpose, what indicator you looked at to tell you small investors bought a lot today? I trolled a few trading forums on Thursday and Friday, and it seems on those board more are in bear camp. Thanks.

    • Craig(118083 comments)-
      March 20, 2009 at 11:22 pm

      Wow, good stuff, but I’m leaning ST bearish for now based on *both* articles.
      Except PM’s, miners, commodities on dips.

      The second paragraph of the second article, written on Wednesday, before our fall from grace…. “Unless trading takes the market significantly lower by week’s end, the Standard & Poor’s 500 will have a pair of long-term bullish events under its belt. It already can boast several bullish short-term improvements.”

      I guess the question becomes, what is significantly lower? 755? 741? 700? 666?
      It would probably take some nasty news to break the Nov. low again, but anything is possible.

      • dberryclan(118083 comments)-
        March 20, 2009 at 11:41 pm

        If we have learned one thing the past 6 months is, “anything is possible”, manage the risk to the portfolio…..Bill describes an extreme emotional aspect to this market, ….also known as panic in, panic out….

        good luck

  79. 2nd_ave(118083 comments)-
    March 20, 2009 at 11:11 pm

    [Submitted by David (422 comments) on Thu, 03/19/2009 – 23:27 #17911 (Posted in reply to this comment (#17824))

    Except that I don’t think there is any psychological limit at which the selling in FAS will stop — it simply does the triple percentage move in ^RIFIN. So I am placing a buy limit order for 1000 shares tomorrow at $5, which would only require a 4.3% down move in ^RIFIN.]

    http://finance.yahoo.com/q?s=%5Erifin

    http://finance.yahoo.com/q?s=fas

  80. teamonfuego(118083 comments)-
    March 21, 2009 at 12:05 am

    I almost held FAZ through the weekend then thought…”What are you stupid? You just made 10% in one day on a triple ultra financials ETF that could drop 30% when you wake up in the morning on Monday. Why have that hanging over your head this weekend?”

    That was the thought process I just went through 3 minutes before AH closed…i just sold the FAZ at $35.31 in AH that i bought at an average cost of $32.20.

    Repeat after me…these things (FAZ, FAS) are day trading vehicles only.

    these things (FAZ, FAS) are day trading vehicles only.

    these things (FAZ, FAS) are day trading vehicles only.

    these things (FAZ, FAS) are day trading vehicles only.

    these things (FAZ, FAS) are day trading vehicles only.
    these things (FAZ, FAS) are day trading vehicles only. these things (FAZ, FAS) are day trading vehicles only. these things (FAZ, FAS) are day trading vehicles only. these things (FAZ, FAS) are day trading vehicles only. these things (FAZ, FAS) are day trading vehicles only. these things (FAZ, FAS) are day trading vehicles only. these things (FAZ, FAS) are day trading vehicles only. these things (FAZ, FAS) are day trading vehicles only.

    sorry…

    • Mackinaw(118083 comments)-
      March 21, 2009 at 12:13 am

      Ha ha, teamfuego – well done! Took you long enough, πŸ˜›

      Anyway, I just used this response as a vehicle for a video link which MANY of you are absolutely going to LOVE (CP, SiO2, Bill(?),and many others). Enjoy!

      http://www.ted.com/talks/hans_rosling_shows_the_be

      I saw this a few years ago, well before I discovered Bill’s site, so I apologize if it has already been discussed.

      • Chickenpookie(118083 comments)-
        March 21, 2009 at 1:11 pm

        Mackinaw – Thanks for giving it a shot but unfortunately my tin-can and string internet connection limits my ability when it comes to very large files and of course video. ie: I’m once again unable to enjoy the wisdom communicated through the magic of presentation. I’m sure your link was chocked full of insightful observation, thanks for the attempt, I apologize for my handicap. πŸ™

    • Corner Stone(118083 comments)-
      March 21, 2009 at 3:08 am

      Absolutely. Very happy to scalp a little off FAS today and get flat before the close. Holding stock of a company you’ve studied is one thing, stressing over a 3X that has no actual underlying fundamentals…well, I’m sure Kaimu has a snappy closing saying for that kind of foolishness.

  81. Mark Barry(118083 comments)-
    March 21, 2009 at 12:12 am

    Am I the only one getting tired of playing the news? Or more accurately being played by the news.

    http://tinyurl.com/c4lpgo

    • proudPapa(118083 comments)-
      March 21, 2009 at 3:40 am

      What are you talking about Mark?! This is awesome news! Just “$75 billion and $100 billion in new capital” to “rid the financial system of toxic assets”?

      Hallelulja, we’re saved!

      Oh wait, aren’t we already in for like $10t?

      Oh, and “that amount could expand down the road.” Didn’t see that coming.

      Guess that’s why Geithner has been so quiet lately, he’s been working on this piece of genius.

  82. Mackinaw(118083 comments)-
    March 21, 2009 at 12:51 am

    AIG Bonuses = C.C. Sabathia’s contract with the Yankees.

    I have to agree with Don Coxe. This Pitchfork Politics by Congress is appalling! And these folks in Congress want to take the lead in regulating the new financial system? Plz! If I see that Pelosi Puffer-Fish once more at the mike in this crisis, I think I will puke.

  83. Shiva(118083 comments)-
    March 21, 2009 at 1:09 am

    maybe they need this kind of stuff for senate confirmations, red light no confirmation, green light ok πŸ™‚

    http://www.ted.com/index.php/talks/pattie_maes_dem

    • Mackinaw(118083 comments)-
      March 21, 2009 at 1:22 am

      Shiva, nice.

      “Owes Back taxes for his Nanny, Niet!”

  84. David(118083 comments)-
    March 21, 2009 at 3:20 am

    Just to be ready to take some profits on a run up and free up some cash to buy it back on the dips, placing a sell limit order at $2.7 for the 1000 shares I recently purchased at $1.7, at $2.9 for the 1000 shares I purchased at $1.9, at $3.3 for the 1000 shares I purchased at $1.85 and at $3.85 for another bunch of 1000 shares I purchased at $1.85.

  85. David(118083 comments)-
    March 21, 2009 at 3:29 am

    Similarly to UXG, just to be ready to take some profits on a run up and free up some cash to buy it back on the dips, placing a sell limit order at $4.67 for the 500 shares I recently purchased at $3.67 and at $5.35 for the 500 shares I purchased at $3.35.

  86. proudPapa(118083 comments)-
    March 21, 2009 at 4:01 am

    bit of humor…

    http://imgur.com/VIPE.jpg

  87. David(118083 comments)-
    March 21, 2009 at 6:26 am

    Does anyone have the link to Don Coxe’s weekly call this Friday? Thanks…

    • barry(118083 comments)-
      March 21, 2009 at 9:52 am
      • David(118083 comments)-
        March 22, 2009 at 12:40 am

        Thanks, Barry! It was encouraging (for my long positions) to hear that Don Coxe is quite pessimistic now and is unwilling to commit capital to the market until the government “gets its act together.” John Hussman, who was reasonably optimistic starting October, turned noticeably pessimistic on the weekend before the rally began a couple of weeks ago. So it is true that the rally starts when all optimists turn bearish and the rally continues as long as most of the people stay very skeptical. I don’t think enough bad news have happened over the past two weeks, and since even the optimistic investors have sold all positions they could sell two weeks ago, I don’t see a large supply of sellers in the market now. I could be totally misreading the situation, but this is what my intuition is telling me.

        • barry(118083 comments)-
          March 22, 2009 at 6:14 pm

          I was also considering that Coxe’s pessimism along with several other writers may signal the bottom. I still plan to very cautiously try stocks outside the oil and precious metal sectors, however. Even these areas look like a pullback may be indicated for the short term.

  88. Bill Cara(118083 comments)-
    March 21, 2009 at 11:43 am

    We know that the Internet has morphed into the newspaper and blogs, the telephone, radio and television, video games, books, the classroom, the boardroom, and various other forms of media. It’s amazing how quickly the Internet is transforming our lives — if we allow it.

    If it were not for the Internet, I would not be able to awake on a Saturday morning to enjoy these links you provided. Thank you for sharing.

    http://www.ted.com/index.php/talks/pattie_maes_dem
    http://www.ted.com/talks/hans_rosling_shows_the_be

  89. Bill Cara(118083 comments)-
    March 21, 2009 at 11:50 am

    With sufficient time for planning, the 2010 Cara Conference will be fully Internet accessible. The venue will be south Florida, either Ft. Lauderdale or Miami.

    • 2nd_ave(118083 comments)-
      March 21, 2009 at 1:49 pm

      That sounds great!

      Maybe Vegas in 3-4 years, when attendance is up to 4 figures. The Venetian has beautiful convention facilities (space/sound/lighting/technology), and within walking distance of anything you’d want to visit on the Strip.

      • no imagination(118083 comments)-
        March 21, 2009 at 1:58 pm

        2nd,Why does your suggestion not surprise me? πŸ™‚ Great Idea, and perhaps you can conduct gambling classes for us that know nothing?
        Thanks to all.

        • 2nd_ave(118083 comments)-
          March 21, 2009 at 2:02 pm

          LOL. You learn gambling lessons here every day.

  90. Ron Sen(118083 comments)-
    March 21, 2009 at 12:11 pm

    http://ronsen.blogspot.com/2009/03/saturday-mornin

    That which is working gets worked against by central planners. Inverse financials, gold, volatility, and rising rates.

    The free market has become anything but free.

  91. Craig(118083 comments)-
    March 21, 2009 at 12:15 pm

    Truly amazing!
    I meant it last weekend when everyone was a little dour and I posted Paul Simon’s words to Boy in the Bubble….”these are the days of miracle and wonder”.

    Just think, we used to dream of these tools reading Dick Tracy comic books, they happened and now we’re at the next stage. What next?

    This will change trading, that’s for sure. Instant fundamental analysis with the point of a finger?

    Clearly, communication, the speed of information, changes everything.

    • Bill Cara(118083 comments)-
      March 21, 2009 at 1:18 pm

      re: “This will change trading, that’s for sure. Instant fundamental analysis with the point of a finger? Clearly, communication, the speed of information, changes everything.”

      Craig, it’s much closer than you think! As you may be aware, I participated in a couple SEC conference calls between high-level staff and bloggers re their XBRL program, and everything I see about it is AAA-positive.

      Real-time information will transform trading. This is all part of the reason that ‘buy-and-hold’ (ie, the mutual fund model) is dead. I cannot over-stress the importance of this program to the social equity movement.

      Please read up on the SEC XBRL program.
      http://www.sec.gov/spotlight/xbrl.shtml

      Forget the DC politics and HB&B pressures that got the agency and senior department heads of the SEC sidetracked, this XBRL program is govt at work for the people. The program director is Mark Story, and he would be delighted to take your mail, particularly from media, to discuss the massive benefits XBRL will soon bring to capital markets. His e-mail is StoryM [at] sec.gov

      • Craig(118083 comments)-
        March 21, 2009 at 2:02 pm

        Instant Data’s (karma?) gonna get you? LOL!

        I know it’s close! You can see all we need now is access to the data. The tools to find, quantify and manipulate are already with us and improving by the second.

        We need to write to support access to the data.

        There has been some talk of “revolution” here of late. There is a silent revolution ongoing. We all use it everyday.
        The information revolution is running full steam ahead. HB&B can’t stop it.
        Al Queda can’t stop it. Computers unleash power to the people through information.
        Just ask Gorbachev. There was no choice about Glasnost. It was imposed by information technology. It will be the same for North Korea, Afghanistan, parts of Africa, all the poorest countries on the video. The same will be true for fascism on the upper end/developed countries. Next stop….HB&B.

        That video is awesome.

        We can all see why HEALTH and infant mortality is so influential in world economies, more than wealth. As a matter of fact, you can see health produce wealth in the video. Anyone doubting our focus on health care needs to see that video, it changes everything and informs our outdated opinions.

        And for those worried about such things…yes, Obama uses media and information masterfully, yet, one way or the other, information will be his master.

  92. Craig(118083 comments)-
    March 21, 2009 at 1:22 pm

    We agree on the last sentence! That’s good!

    Without speed of communication, how will you watch Obama? You might be concentrating too much on one message (his), the speed of information benefits both sides if they make use of it. Otherwise how would you know how big the deficit is, the troop levels to be sent to Afghanistan, or any of the other policies and decisions you are questioning?

    The information MUST precede your reaction. If this were Jackson’s time we would just be reading about the inauguration and his choices for cabinet positions. There would have been NO outrage over Geithner’s not paying taxes, there would have been NO public reaction to any of this non-sense.
    Some papers would still be on the train or wagons enroute.

    Check out the links from Bill’s post.
    We live in a completely different time, regardless of our differing views.
    Our views are informed by the speed and quality of information, whether policy makers act as they should in a timely manner on quality information is probably not a topic we will disagree on.

    I think Bill’s TED Hans Rosling video says it all much better than I ever could.
    As the Firesign Theatre said, “Everything You Know is Wrong”.

  93. 2nd_ave(118083 comments)-
    March 21, 2009 at 2:00 pm

    “Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner is putting the finishing touches on a plan to get toxic assets off the books of the country’s struggling banks, according to administration and industry officials. The plan could be announced as soon as Monday, they said.”

    http://tinyurl.com/crupog

    Let’s hope he hits one. A simple grounder that puts him on first is good enough for me.

    • kaimu(118083 comments)-
      March 21, 2009 at 2:08 pm

      ALOHA !!

      Its hard for me to imagine him(Geitner) “hitting one” unless he resigns and abolishes the US FED! All he will come up with is a band-aid that at best saves insolvent US Banks at the expense of insolvent US TAXPAYERS and passes on the DEBT to future generations to battle against FIAT!

      DEBT cannot settle DEBT! All it does is grow the monetary base which in turn impoverishes the masses for the benefit of the POLIT-BANK and their FIAT …

    • number2son(118083 comments)-
      March 21, 2009 at 2:12 pm

      2nd, at this point a foul ball would be an improvement as it would show he can at least make contact.

      I doubt he offers anything other than another wild swing and a miss.

      And remember, in baseball it’s three strikes and you’re out.

      • 2nd_ave(118083 comments)-
        March 21, 2009 at 2:19 pm

        Except in the financial markets, where it’s three strikes and the crowd in the bleachers is down and out. Batter retains his million-dollar contract(s).

  94. 2nd_ave(118083 comments)-
    March 21, 2009 at 2:16 pm

    Took the first pre-dawn walk (of the year) by San Andreas Lake this morning (too cold during the winter). Stopped at my Dad’s place afterwards. He’s putting money back to work in the market. His portfolio is 2/3 managed by TIAA-CREF, and 1/3 by himself. Large bond positions in the 2/3, and cash in the 1/3, saved him from taking a big hit.

    Off to take the 7-year-old to Chinese school.

  95. kaimu(118083 comments)-
    March 21, 2009 at 2:17 pm
  96. Foz(118083 comments)-
    March 21, 2009 at 2:18 pm

    Seems to me that Congress and the media are focusing on the wrong people. Even having Ed Liddy before Congress seems a little off the mark – shouldn’t they have grilled Hank Greenberg and Martin Sullivan? And what about the creators and sellers of derivative contracts? The ‘naked’ CDS as they call them? And of course, those at the ratings agencies responsible for the AAA rubber-stamping all the toxic waste sold around the globe? Am I missing something? Why aren’t we going after the arsonists who burned down the financial village?

  97. Craig(118083 comments)-
    March 21, 2009 at 2:21 pm

    I agree with everything except only taxpayers voting. That would give all the power back to HB&B who would simply make sure none of us made anything while they took over.

    For OUR movement we need all the victims to stick together…that would be the 98% of us left. The people not paying taxes are victims too, or in this country of wealth they would make money and pay taxes. Are they to blame for being victims of inflationary theft/fraud and outright class warfare? They should be your base Kaimu. They are your soldiers.
    Think about it, you need people to do things the “safe” middle class won’t do, like get arrested, civil disobedience, protesting, etc. People WITH STUFF, like many of US lazy 3astards here, are worried about mailing checks to the CC company and making the rent. Getting arrested for protesting would be messy, and HB&B COUNTS on this power over us.

    It’s not until there is nothing left to lose that real action takes place.
    Notice who is involved in protests? College kids, youth, worried about their future with NOTHING to lose.
    Real action might be coming….but you need those with nothing to lose on your side. The enemy of my enemy is my friend.

  98. Chickenpookie(118083 comments)-
    March 21, 2009 at 2:32 pm

    I’m thinking news on rising home starts isn’t necessarily what we need to hear at this time, it’s putting the horse before the cart…. There’s over a year of inventory out there and probably more if you think the rate of foreclosure is rising….

  99. Craig(118083 comments)-
    March 21, 2009 at 2:48 pm

    Grym,
    We may be using parallel arguments, but I will still choose the speed and accuracy of the information we have today over the 19th century, and I’ll also choose the data we have today over nothing. Saying all data is bad is wrong, as Hans shows us in the video. We actually have very good data. We can’t confuse “news” with data and we also know some data put out by politicians is crap. We have enough sources to overcome the crap data or we wouldn’t have known what was happening for the last few years, as one example.
    Some knew and some used crap data in an attempt to hide it. Still, they didn’t hide it from Bill or a slew of others, so those who knew what data to look at read the tea leaves. That’s what we’re supposed to learn here! This entire site is nothing BUT data. Everyday Bill posts all those charts and info….DATA!
    If it’s not good data, why are you here? Because it is good data.

    Knowing the deficit is going to be 1 trillion or 2 trillion is only a matter of scale. We know it’s out of control and that by any measure, we better react now on a personal level to protect ourselves in the future. In this frame of reference, the data is accurate enough to draw a reasonable conclusion and plan of action. In short, we are in deep crap. The data is clear enough for that conclusion.

  100. M R Ducks(118083 comments)-
    March 21, 2009 at 2:51 pm

    Are these YouTube videos to be believed??? I would really like to hear discussion on this. I think we may be in seriously deep Do-Do.

    Part 1: http://tinyurl.com/c3kk69

    Part 2: http://tinyurl.com/cdg5xo

    Part 3: http://tinyurl.com/d42rss

    • number2son(118083 comments)-
      March 21, 2009 at 4:34 pm

      An excellent presentation from DeepCapture. Thanks for the link.

      Here’s a related link of interest: http://www.businessjive.com/

      Also, Michael Moore is making a documentary about this subject. I expect there are a lot of people among Bill’s readers who may have something to contribute. Email him at bailout@michaelmoore.com.

    • vanillabean(118083 comments)-
      March 21, 2009 at 4:45 pm

      I do know, that Terrorists have been warning another one was coming that would dwarf 911 and they have people on the inside here in the US. So.. How to connect the dots is the question.

      Who really is the the “Al Qaeda” financial network, who is the jewish mafia in LA.

      How do these people relate to the hedge funds, sec and the FED

      I will look forward to Michael Moore’s new movie

      vb

  101. Craig(118083 comments)-
    March 21, 2009 at 3:14 pm

    Good one 2nd. Hope you had a nice walk and visit. Sounds like it.

    I’m off this thing for the next three days as I have a ton of work to do, will try to check in evenings.

    Enjoy spring everyone!

  102. Ron Sen(118083 comments)-
    March 21, 2009 at 4:22 pm

    Assumptions: (I have no idea if I’m on target)

    1) The temptation will be to try to buy assets for 5 cents on the dollar, using the government’s 85% ‘loan’ leverage

    2) One would say, “obviously a good deal” as a hedge fund you throw in 75 million of your money, 425 million of loan, and hope to make 100% profit as a nickel becomes a dime. Not only the profit, but the leverage available is the carrot.

    3) Why not do it?
    -It’s basically the government version of a Ponzi scheme (be the first to get in)
    – If you do profiteer, what’s to keep the government from going rogue via the Congress and taxing you at the 90 percent? I’ll bet that the hedge funds value their independence (and profits) more than taking on more regulatory risk (in a sense sovereignty risk) from this.

    Does this sound logical?

    • Babybear(118083 comments)-
      March 21, 2009 at 4:41 pm

      “The temptation will be to try to buy assets for 5 cents on the dollar, using the government’s 85% ‘loan’ leverage”.

      Not really, at least not according to Geithner. The government is trying to create incentive for private sector to buy “illiquid assets” that are currently marked at 25C on a dollar at a significant premium, say 60C to 75C. To achieve this, they provide huge leverage (cheap money), also they will set up SEVERAL funds with the the same purpose to promote competition among buyers.

      This program is not targeting hedge funds imo. It really is targeting the sideline cash. One of the potential managers of such a public-private fund could be Bill Gross, who I believe has said he is very interested a month ago.

      Btw, hedge funds will throw their integrity and independence into trash can in a heart’s beat, if they can get that additional 10% return. Haven’t this crisis shown us how greedy and stupid Wall Street (broadly speaking) is?

  103. sandy(118083 comments)-
    March 21, 2009 at 4:24 pm

    http://tinyurl.com/d2bban

    And he want to protect his house/assets.
    Shame on him.

  104. PapaT(118083 comments)-
    March 21, 2009 at 5:00 pm
    • proudPapa(118083 comments)-
      March 22, 2009 at 5:25 am

      Great article. [edit: good article after I read the rest of it πŸ™‚ ]

      If I may sum it up with a sprinkling of my own interpretation

      The counterargument to reflationary success is that the first beneficiary of inflation is commodities and ultimately the prices of inelastics like food and energy, thus representing a further burden on the consumer who is already in dire straights. Given the already witnessed, and likely further demand destruction of all discretionary spending, the last place we’ll see inflation is in wages.

      Another way to think of it is from one of the classic arguments of inflation: money pumped into the system benefits the first recipients the most (banks and the rich). These beneficiaries will likely recognize the monetary destruction and invest in hard assets and inelastics (food and energy), reaping rewards of increasing prices. The poor and middle class however will continue to pay their huge mortgages, have no access to the created money, cannot invest in hard assets to participate in its value appreciation, and instead are forced to pay the higher prices. These higher prices mean less money for spending on discretionary goods and services, thus pressuring wages.

      Strange to think that reflationary policies could actually do more damage to the vast majority it is meant to help, but not really surprising. Anything the govt touches ultimately seems doomed to failure…

      From an investing perspective this jives with Bill’s call for investment in energy and basic materials (though predominantly agricultural), and precious metals.

      From a trading perspective I believe it means more volatility and further downside as the plight of the consumer plays out to its natural end.

  105. Shiva(118083 comments)-
    March 21, 2009 at 5:59 pm

    Bill – from saturday report
    “Once the toxic assets have been rendered atoxic, the credit default swap insurance problem that is presently sinking the global financial system soon becomes an historical footnote.”

    This would be very positive for all the financials – isn’t it? There could be money made in the short run in all the bank stocks before inflation starts creeping in & commodity stocks take off

    • vinod(118083 comments)-
      March 21, 2009 at 6:38 pm

      The problem we have was caused by too many bad loans. Now the arguement is that moreloans need to be made by Fed to solve the problem. Banks aren’t making loans because they are now using rational standards. A person or company can get a loan if they show they are likely to pay it back. Isn’t this how we want the loan process to work! Does the Fed think it can build a whole economy on unsound loans?

  106. NYUGrad(118083 comments)-
    March 21, 2009 at 6:24 pm

    I got back in Citi at the close Friday because it showed similar divergence before breaking down into the close; and i had some hunches that some new intervention was coming over the weekend. But the reaction can still be negative on monday’s open.

    below is a list of the stocks (some cara 100 some not)that i am watching and waiting for entry. Of these, the only ones where RSI 2 is near or in the oversold zone are SLB, NKE, APA, CVX, SBUX, PTR, and DIG.

    GG
    CEO
    PBR
    NKE
    APA
    BHP
    SLB
    CVX
    ORLY
    GMCR
    TCK
    SBUX
    PTR
    ECA
    CCJ
    SLW
    RIO
    DIG

    * not recommended as advice. just discussion. I can’t wait to get next week over with and get out of NJ for a few days in the bahamas. I CANT WAIT.

    • Vadym Graifer(118083 comments)-
      March 21, 2009 at 6:37 pm

      “I can’t wait…for a few days in the bahamas. I CANT WAIT.”

      Man… add a few exclamation marks, and bodyguards are in order!

      Just kidding, pretty jazzed about it myself πŸ™‚

  107. tpedward(118083 comments)-
    March 21, 2009 at 6:40 pm

    Kinross shares slip on diamond foray

    March 21, 2009

    “Shares in Kinross Gold Corp. finished lower Friday after the company announced late Thursday it would buy a stake in the Diavik diamond mine in the Northwest Territories.

    Shares in the gold producer closed down 3.5 per cent, or 81 cents, to $22.28 on the Toronto Stock Exchange on Friday.

    Late Thursday, the company announced a $150-million US deal to acquire a minority stake in the Diavik diamond mine in the Northwest Territories, along with a 19.9 per cent stake in Harry Winston Diamond Corp., the biggest Canadian supplier.”

    any thoughts/opinions on this deal?

    • FranSix(118083 comments)-
      March 21, 2009 at 9:56 pm

      We’ve seen lots of moves on distressed gold miners in the junior space, Kinross is just following that impulse. Buying a diamond miner is probably very ill advised, especially after making such a great coup with their Aurelian purchase. What they are saying with this purchase is that there are virtually no gold properties they would rather buy than a major diamond miner as an investment.

      Diamonds have lost half their value in the crash, and will procede along with commodities to be overwhelmed with the onset of a massive deflationary macroeconomic. (despite the rally) They are buying the diamond miner in the hopes that they have their market perspective correct, that we are seeing a recovery and the onset of inflation. Yes, we are seeing the onset of money printing, but this will not set the course for the future, as the further collapse of bad assets in the commercial banking sector, as well as the collapse of the commercial real estate sector along with the collapse of sovereign debt has yet to occur.

      Only gold will perform as a store of value, and even then it has its risks going forward. Growth will come in the gold sector as long term bond yields continue to underperform the surge in money printing, diamonds do not have this economic in their favour.

      They are buying in at or near the ‘top’ in a bear market rally.

      • yvrapx(118083 comments)-
        March 22, 2009 at 2:35 am

        FranSix
        IMHO K has looked at all of the available gold properties and identified a terribly undervalued asset that will be immediately acretive. Gold company’s have a very dear valuation attached to them currently and diamonds don’t. The amount of cash being printed will hurt the USD, timing is always difficult to predict. Based on gold production numbers there is no compelling reason for gold to dip much below $850 for any sustained period of time and is more likely to break above $1000 and stay there. There is no mystery to the rise in base metals, oil, gold and other commodity stock prices, the massive printing of money is forcing investors to identify ‘things’ that have a value.
        Diamonds aren’t K core competency but I think they have a team of smart managers/board members that will show this to be a very prescient investment.

        • FranSix(118083 comments)-
          March 22, 2009 at 2:58 am

          ‘Things’ are not a store of value. Gold is a form of money that is. Attempts at re-inflation have no guarantee whatsoever of increasing the value of goods, without increasing the costs. Costs of production are declining, which is deflationary. That means, any rise in the price of oil, or copper is temporary as we must complete an A-B-C-D-E correction until the bottom is reached. imo, we are seeing bear market rally in ‘things.’

          Diamonds are unlikely to be chosen as a benchmark for currency as a way of getting out of the depression. Therefore, diamond will not be seen as a way of storing value. Gold has outperformed diamonds. The value perceived in Diavik for Kinross is the debt taken on by Diavik during times of boom they can no longer repay, therefore, they must accept the offer for an equity stake.

          • proudPapa(118083 comments)-
            March 22, 2009 at 4:17 am

            Some examples of ‘Things’ that are not a store of value:

            Houses
            Cars
            Derivatives

            πŸ™‚

          • Chickenpookie(118083 comments)-
            March 22, 2009 at 6:30 pm

            “Some examples of ‘Things’ that are not a store of value:

            Houses
            Cars
            Derivatives”

            Proudpapa, good luck if you have no future plan to acquire real estate, it was my first, and has been my best, performing security. These are stores of value:

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Store_of_value

            Only a few months ago, gold spot was $699, 36% less than today’s price and 47% less than one year ago. Real estate has proven more stable. Please provide your definition for store of value???

          • proudPapa(118083 comments)-
            March 22, 2009 at 10:45 pm

            CP, you’re right, I was commenting ‘from the hip’. Real estate is certainly a store of value, however it’s been a lousy investment in the last 5 years. But the time is coming soon when it will once again be a good investment as well.

  108. vinod(118083 comments)-
    March 21, 2009 at 7:06 pm
    • number2son(118083 comments)-
      March 21, 2009 at 8:08 pm

      One other thing I’ll add. Virtually none of the non-resident aliens with whom I work have any interest in becoming citizens. To a person, they all look forward to returning to their home countries. Even those who have been working in the U.S. for almost a decade and are raising families here.

      Perhaps that reflects the same outlook revealed in that study.

      • vinod(118083 comments)-
        March 21, 2009 at 9:33 pm
        • kaimu(118083 comments)-
          March 22, 2009 at 12:58 am

          ALOHA!!

          Whats the beef with H1B? I have no problem with immigrant labor. If we as a Nation do want to close the door to foreigners then lets take down the Statue Of Liberty!

          There is a need for immigrant labor high tech or no tech!

          Heck, if not for Mexicans, legal and illegal, hardly any construction would come in under budget! Ever try to find a white guy or a black guy on a cement crew here in the USA, especially in California?

          My best and most loyal workers were Mexicans and quite frankly we had no problem at all paying them “union scale” on public works projects! Most of them were sending some of their money back home to Mexico. That is “as it should be”!

          God only knows what food would cost if we got rid of all the Mexicans, legal and illegal! I am here to say not all Mexicans you see working are illegal. Many including the ones working for me became legal under the last Regan “amnesty” Bill back in the 1980s …

          • Shiva(118083 comments)-
            March 22, 2009 at 4:44 am

            “If we as a Nation do want to close the door to foreigners then lets take down the Statue Of Liberty!” I cannot but appreciate the high stand taken by Kaimu on this.

            Do we want to be xenophoic banana republic or do we want to be a country that thinks & acts higher than the rest, practicing the highest standards in moral code. Personally, I do not agree with illegal migration but whats the beef with legal workers here, if u dont agree with the law, work to change it. For information, biggest offshorers are American companies like IBM, they offer a catalogue to customers with service level & price level & customers make their choice(nobody is forcing them). On the manufacturing side, scales of economy tilt towards China & there is no escape from that unless we are willing to pay significantly higher prices for goods & services produced here….. There is a town in Belgium, Bruge, it was known for its handworked lace(locally made), when I visited it last time, I couldnt find a single lace shop that sells local stuff, everything is made in China. Its really the reality of global trade. And for ages, humans have traded between countries, nothing new here.

            And most of these manufacturing facilities/service companies are managed by Americans/Europeans and the host countries (3rd world countries) treat the expats very well, they are in fact treated better than the locals. Nokia sells about 60% of their products in Chindia, so do we say we want their revenues but will only manufacture/do all value add in Finland. Its either global trade and lets all walk together to make a better world or protectionism & lets all go down together…..

          • number2son(118083 comments)-
            March 22, 2009 at 5:24 pm
          • kaimu(118083 comments)-
            March 22, 2009 at 6:12 pm

            ALOHA !!

            Under Davis Bacon you have no choice but to pay union scale, which in the Real World would be considered “maximum wage”, but in the UNION WORLD minimum wage is $25 an hour for an unskilled worker!

            My comment meant to point out that I would hire a Mexican over a IBEW180 worker simply due to “work ethic”!

            Rather than a “strong labor movement” I would prefer a “strong work ethic”! A lot of “ethic” is about attitude.

            As any international company knows you can get plenty of labor from all over the World, but a “work ethic” is something that cannot be guaranteed by a Princeton degree or a green card!

            That’s just my employer self talking … Only employers(who write the pay checks every week)would have an idea as to what I am saying.

            Just an aside … I recently had the misfortune to have to call the DELL tech service and man … The first guy I got was from Columbia and the second guy I got was from Germany … They both told me I needed to reinstall my Vista OS. I ended up going to my local Hawaiian computer nerd and he fixed the problem WIKI-WIKI without reinstalling Vista! Both these idiots I had the misfortune to speak with had their ATTITUDE come through LOUD AND CLEAR. I have been using DELL since 1993 in business and personal life and both those DELL techs convinced me, in no uncertain way, that I should quit buying DELL products so that they can stand in unemployment lines! ATTITUDE … Google it!

            Was that GLOBALIZATION in action?

  109. Milesquare(118083 comments)-
    March 21, 2009 at 7:11 pm
    • dnfrm(118083 comments)-
      March 21, 2009 at 8:52 pm

      Ah! A comparably reasonable and restrained commentary… indeed a pleasant departure from so much of the preaching particularly by the ex-I.R.S. employee who repeatedly rants about BIG GOVERNMENT, the US FED, and the US INCOME TAX. Hmmm… aren’t I.R.S. folks the ones who oversee and enforce the collection of income taxes… and aren’t their employee wages and benefits funded by federal taxes? HA!

  110. Chickenpookie(118083 comments)-
    March 21, 2009 at 10:15 pm

    After watching as BC was beaten to a pulp Friday, I saw this article:

    “Marine floorplan loans to be included in government relief programme

    By IBI Magazine

    The US government’s Term Asset-Based Securities Lending Facility (TALF), which was designed to free up to US$1 trillion worth of credit, will now include marine floorplan financing. The inclusion was hailed as a “victory” for the marine industry.”

    http://www.ibinews.com/ibinews/newsdesk/2009022015

  111. nemo(118083 comments)-
    March 21, 2009 at 10:47 pm

    Derivative markets …. an understandable explanation:

    Heidi is the proprietor of a bar in Detroit. In order to increase sales, she
    decides to allow her loyal customers – most of whom are unemployed
    alcoholics – to drink now but pay later. She keeps track of the drinks
    consumed on a ledger (thereby granting the customers loans).

    Word gets around about Heidi’s drink now pay later marketing strategy
    and as a result, increasing numbers of customers flood into Heidi’s bar
    and soon she has the largest sale volume for any bar in Detroit.

    By providing her customers’ freedom from immediate payment demands,
    Heidi gets no resistence when she substantially increases her prices for
    wine and beer, the most consumed beverages. Her sales volume increases
    massively.

    A young and dynamic vice-president at the local bank recognizes these
    customer debts as valuable future assets and increases Heidi’s borrowing
    limit.

    He sees no reason for undue concern since he has the debts of the
    alcoholics as collateral. At the bank’s corporate headquarters, expert
    traders transform these customer loans into DRINKBONDS, ALKIBONDS
    and PUKEBONDS.

    These securities are then traded on security markets
    worldwide. Niave investors don’t really understand the securities being sold
    to them as AAA secured bonds are really the debts of unemployed alcoholics.

    Nevertheless, their prices continuously climb, and the securities become
    the top-selling items for some of the nation’s leading brokerage houses.

    One day, although the bond prices are still climbing, a risk manager at the
    bank (subsequently fired due his negativity), decides that the time has come
    to demand payment on the debts incurred by the drinkers at Heidi’s bar.

    Heidi demands payment from her alcoholic patrons, but being unemployed
    they they cannot pay back their drinking debts. Therefore, Heidi cannot
    fulfill her loan obligations and claims bankruptcy.

    DRINKBOND and ALKIBOND drop in price by 90 %. PUKEBOND performs
    better, stabilizing in price after dropping by 80 %. The decreased bond
    asset value destroys the banks liquidity and prevents it from issuing new loans.

    The suppliers of Heidi’s bar, having granted her generous payment extentions
    and having invested in the securities are faced with writing off her debt
    and losing over 80% on her bonds. Her wine supplier claims bankruptcy, her beer
    supplier is taken over by a competitor, who immediately closes the local
    plant and lays off 50 workers.

    The bank and brokerage houses are saved by the Government following
    dramatic round-the-clock negotiations by leaders from both political
    parties.

    The funds required for this bailout are obtained by a tax levied on employed
    middle-class non-drinkers.

    • vinod(118083 comments)-
      March 21, 2009 at 11:12 pm

      When a fireman sees a house on fire, he sounds an alarm, dons his turnout gear, bravely rescues the occupants and puts out the fire.
      When an investment banker sees a house on fire, he quietly sells the burning house short, uses the proceeds to buy a larger house for himself and, when someone suggests that his taxes be raised to help the homeless, he rails against the dangers of socialism

    • Mark Barry(118083 comments)-
      March 21, 2009 at 11:53 pm

      Nemo- Very fun Saturday read. Are you sure those bonds weren’t rated “AA’!

    • 2nd_ave(118083 comments)-
      March 22, 2009 at 2:32 pm

      Derivative markets …. (another) understandable explanation:

      It was all good when it was just cocaine. Then bankers recognized the opportunity. They started to step on the product to increase the bottom line. At first, they were cutting it to reasonable dilutions with quinine and lidocaine, and unsuspecting buyers remained just that.

      Later, early investment bankers got into the picture, adding sodium bicarbonate and creating a derivative product marketed aggressively to less-qualified buyers.

      More sophisticated investment bankers started to cut the product 5 and 6 times, while adding methylated and acetylated derivatives of amphetamine- these were sold in bulk to foreign markets as SCDs (synthetic coca derivatives).

      The price of cocaine plummeted, driving leading global producers in Cali to the brink of extinction. Last-minute intervention by the IMF, in the form of a 1.2t cash infusion, was used to subsidize the production of coca and keep the Colombian economy afloat, while awaiting a resurgence in the price of the end product.

      Bogota appointed a local expert in the coca markets, Senor “High as a” Keithner, to organize the rescue effort. He immediately advised that the cartels use the $1.2t to (re)purchase the entire global supply of SCDs for 5 cents on the dollar. Enterprising assistants had administered “stress tests” (chemical extractions), which revealed that the coca content of SCDs actually approached 25%! Keithner met with the 20 major coca dealers around the globe, who agreed to immedidately cease all methamphetamine/amphetamine/SCD production. By shutting down the supply of all stimulant derivatives, the price of coca quickly recovered, eventually returning to (and even exceeding) pre-crisis levels.

      Keither was hailed as the savior of the Colombian economy. The cartels, having sucked 1.2t from the IMF, were busier than ever selling the extracted coca back to grateful clients at 200 cents on the dollar. Everyone was happy.

      What more can we ask for?

  112. davefairtex(118083 comments)-
    March 21, 2009 at 11:34 pm

    Bill said – “With the significantly lower yields (from Tuesday, prior to the FOMC announcement), the impact ought to be lower mortgage rates, which will allow Americans to re-finance with some comfort, taking pressure off the foreclosure problem, which helps the banks, making their assets less toxic”

    Everything seems to circle back to those bad mortgages. Falling home prices causes toxic mortgages. And falling home prices are due to the deflation of the home price bubble, which is about halfway through its cycle, according to the case-schiller data.

    I don’t buy the refi argument. Underwater people can’t refi, and they’re the leading source of defaults. And foreclosure sales are the leading cause of home price drops.

    However, I think lower interest rates will help slow falling home prices. Reducing a 6% mortgage to a 4% mortgage is a 25% reduction in payment. But add tax to that, and all the rest of home ownership burden, and so let’s call it 15%. So if rates drop to 4%, that might add 15% to home prices.

    So lower rates will help a bit, but let’s say we still have another 15% drop remaining. At 2% per month, that’s another 8 months left.

    Perhaps when taken in totality – printing leading to inflation, 4% home mortgages, government sponsored bubble-era-style teaser rate refis for “homeowners in trouble”, a capital “saline drip” that will keep the big banks alive, some moratoriums on foreclosures, and while we’re at it ignore mark-to-market for the next 18 months, we might see some results. My question is, how far in the future will that be?

    Inflation will take a while to occur, the refi programs too, and that massive shadow inventory will have to be worked through, but all that is the “real stuff.” It’s the psychological reversal of the market realizing that the rate of descent is slowing, that’s the important thing. That first report where case-schiller home prices start to decline more slowly, that’s possibly the trigger point.

    Just imagine that reversal of thinking. Huge when it happens. We’ve had a nice rally with all BAD news. Imagine if there was some actual good news?

    So what’s the trade? Home builders? Financials? Who leads in this one? Has this month just been the trial run? Buy your double-long homebuilders and financials and hold on for dear life?

    Or perhaps ignore the ever-shrinking roulette wheel ETFs and go for the more basic instruments:

    XLF 2010 LEAP Calls @ 10 are trading at $1.30 bid. Implied Vol of 74. Imagine XLF rebounding to half of it’s pre-crash value of 34. At 17, those leaps will pay $7 each. That would be pretty sweet!

  113. Mark Barry(118083 comments)-
    March 22, 2009 at 12:02 am

    Getting tax records together tomorrow. Has anyone here had success gaining Mark to Market status with the IRS? Technically I believe I should qualify, but the code is pretty vague. Thanks in advance.

  114. number2son(118083 comments)-
    March 22, 2009 at 12:15 am

    From antisocialmedia.net. Stay with this past the first section that provides a basic overview of naked short selling as it becomes a fascinating presentation with detailed forensics on how the DTCC engaged Gary Weiss to discredit Patrick Byrne.

    http://antisocialmedia.net/lecture1/player.html

  115. loannetter(118083 comments)-
    March 22, 2009 at 1:58 am

    “RISK IS BAD” Oh contraire!

    National Public Radio Podcast from the Planet Money Team 03/20/09: http://www.npr.org/templates/player/mediaPlayer.ht

    The anaylsis is laid out in this podcast regarding the $8-10 Trillion of so called ‘Toxic Assets’. According to Planet Money, the actual payback of Mortgage Backed Securities over time vs. the value today (i.e., if you sold your holdings)is worth a closer look: If you sold them today, sure you’d get back 50 cents on the dollar of your investment. You see, the world has gotten the view lately that risk is bad. Lots of folks are buying these things and would continue to buy them today. According to Planet Money: because they are handled by the big money managers who consider them worth every dime of their original investment — they are not selling them! Sure, the banks that have the ones that are not perfoming seem to be taking their losses and the rest of their businesses are doing well. Holding on seems to be the advice of the day.

    This newscast points out that not everyone is suffering and many banks and investors continue to make money in this market. But you knew that….

  116. Mackinaw(118083 comments)-
    March 22, 2009 at 2:12 am

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/americas/7955984.stm

    I mean, didn’t these people hear Bernanke on Wednesday? It’s just not worth it anymore! πŸ˜›

    • loannetter(118083 comments)-
      March 22, 2009 at 2:28 am

      Guess it depends on your favored substance and personal risk aversion!

  117. proudPapa(118083 comments)-
    March 22, 2009 at 5:49 am
  118. Ron Sen(118083 comments)-
    March 22, 2009 at 11:55 am
  119. nemo(118083 comments)-
    March 22, 2009 at 12:20 pm

    Check your SPAM box.

  120. tango6(118083 comments)-
    March 22, 2009 at 2:05 pm

    Everything is relative, including the “store of value” in gold. In fact, “store of value” itself is an abstract concept. Gold has a store of value partly because it’s exchangeable in a recognized market and mostly because it’s rare. If gold production should suddenly increase by 100 or 1000 times above present levels, we could, indeed pave our streets with the stuff or skip gold sovereigns into the sea for fun. This is precisely why certain seashells became a store of value in Maori and other cultures – they were extremely rare and anyone who found one (like a modern-day gold prospector finding a mineable lode) became instantly wealthy – like Sir Harry Oakes.

    It’s not likely that gold production will increase dramatically, of course. And unless it does, it will continue to have a “store of value,” – for awhile – meaning it can be stored without degrading, and can be exchanged for other things(paper currency, for example) at a variable rate that is set by the market and is more or less mutually acceptable to buyers and sellers.

    But to say that gold will be worth $1,000 or $5,000 in the future is not to say anything about the “store of value” in the metal itself, but only about the diminishing store of value of the paper currency it is measured against. If gold goes to $5,000 or $10,000 an ounce, it will imply the almost total collapse of paper currencies, hyperinflation and large-scale social upheaval. If that happens, people will be killing for water, food and shelter, not gold.

    • Dr. Strangelove(118083 comments)-
      March 22, 2009 at 4:33 pm

      tango6 –

      Consider the influence of gov’t and historic backing of currencies to silver and gold. What’s to stop reflating gold spot in order to reinstate Fort Knox gold backing to the dollar and thereby avoid a full on dollar collapse (hyperinflation) and returning civilization back to the jungle?

      Comex paper gold (fool’s gold) is already being manipulated by giant banks connected to the Treasury and Fed (See Gata.com). Shut that down and physical gold will launch. To back USD would require a gold spot of over $15k/oz today and avoid killing for water, food, and shelter … just gold. U.S. has the largest store of gold at Fort Knox in the modern world … if it’s still there. Last observed by Congressman Phil Crane (R-Ill ret) and the press in the 1970s. Simply back the dollar with Fort Knox gold and stability will return to coming survivalist dollar weakness you describe. If Fort Knox gold has been confiscated, we’re screwed.

      Consider the De Beer’s former cartel on diamonds being less profitable than open system today or OPEC cartel and loss of price control of oil due primarily to lack of production transparancy. Both diamonds and oil are not rare and only made valuable through manipulated scarcity and greed. Gold, on the other hand, is truly scarce without the dubious “benefit” of a cartel and has been used as currency for 5,000 years. India consumes most of it today on brides (wedding crazed culture) even though dowry was officially banned there in ’61. Is India’s consumption of gold a more tangible store of value than our ETF fool’s gold? So to say gold will be used as a store of value “for awhile” is relative to when you think civilization ends.

      I presently own GG, SLW, and have an account at the Perth Mint as a hedge against unstable fiat currencies.

      Cheers.

    • kaimu(118083 comments)-
      March 22, 2009 at 5:52 pm

      ALOHA !!

      tango6 posted: “If gold goes to $5,000 or $10,000 an ounce, it will imply the almost total collapse of paper currencies, hyperinflation and large-scale social upheaval. If that happens, people will be killing for water, food and shelter, not gold.”

      POINT ONE
      This is why I like to look at Zimbabwe … Yes, it is extreme and in Africa, but if dirt poor Africans with hyperinflation of 5000% dig all day in the ground looking for gold so they can buy a loaf of bread then what do you think Americans will be doing? Do you actually think that those who produce and sell the basics like food, water and clothes are going to sell their goods for more paper Zimbabwe money?

      I posted a YouTube video, a few days ago, that shows this is what is happening right now in Zimababwe. Nobody, not even the food producers want PAPER! Its GOLD or starvation! Unless you are really adapt at living off the land in Zimbabwe a lot of its citizens are either refugees or starving. These are the harsh realities of BIG GOVERNMENT and FIAT … There is a thin line between what is happening in Zimbabwe and the USA. What would happen if the US government were forced to reneged on all its social promises of Social Security and Medicare and welfare and food stamps? I believe they will be forced to this and the TARP only hastens this process in light of the growing numbers of Americans forced to retire.

      I for one, cannot count how many people I have known for decades who are either out of work and on unemployment right now or close to it. These people spent their entire lives producing and going on unemployment was a humiliation. Many are now in their 50’s and that isn’t exactly a huge plus for many reasons … least of which is employment opportunities! Jeez, at 50 not even the US military wants you!

      POINT TWO
      This is why I started buying farmland back in 1998 … Not just seasonal farmland, but farmland that produces FOOD all year round as well. That kind of land only exists in places like HAWAII … The bonus for HAWAII is the daily rain and the extremely minimal or non-existent annual water supply shortages.

      In Jan of this year I was driving over Boulder Dam, outside Las Vegas going “prospecting” in North Arizona and the water level at the dam was so low … any lower and they won’t need a dam!

      This is about RESILIENT COMMUNITIES, where dependence for basic human needs on globalization is ZERO, or as close to ZERO as possible. Dependence on foreigners was never an option I ever considered as viable … Self-sufficiency is the goal and the sooner the better in my opinion!

  121. swissrobinson(118083 comments)-
    March 22, 2009 at 2:26 pm
    • Bill Cara(118083 comments)-
      March 23, 2009 at 12:22 am

      swiss, regarding your query about government policy regarding gold, my remark about Treasury paper being garbage could easily be extended to the debt instruments of many governments. From 2001 until today, gold priced in British pounds is almost as high, and in South African rand it is much higher. Even the best of the lot, the Swiss franc, is very much in favor of gold, and not far off the depreciation of the USD to gold.

      So how does DC or any other country organize monetary policy with respect to gold? I suspect they don’t care much because the average person doesn’t hold gold, and it’s the cross rates that determine international trade flows, which are critical to their economies.

      If forex rates were to stay flat for each pair for the next year, I still think gold will hit US$2,000 by the end of the year. All countries are in a mad rush to save the financial system by printing fiat money. Today, as kaimu pointed out, the Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe prints out bank notes denominated in 100 billion dollars “payable to the bearer on demand”. The problem is that it cost one of those notes to buy a loaf of bread, and the seller really doesn’t want the paper. They really want a tiny piece of gold.

      Soon, the world will be lined up to buy a tiny piece of gold.

  122. Bert(118083 comments)-
    March 22, 2009 at 2:38 pm

    Where do we draw the line?

    According to Law Enforcement: If you are white, right-wing, Christian, anti-illegal immigration, anti-federal reserve, supported Ron Paul, or are a critic of the government . . .

    See PDF file: http://forums.slickdeals.net/showthread.php?sduid=

    This is a Missouri government document distributed to its law enforcement. It seems logical to conclude other states have similar documents. One has to wonder about the law enforcement mindset being created here toward the average, disgrunted but law abiding citizen.

    Also, consider the use of fallacy today in all our forms of media/propaganda.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fallacy

  123. NotNekkidYet(118083 comments)-
    March 22, 2009 at 3:12 pm

    http://tiny.cc/GukBw

    and

    http://tiny.cc/DXQbz

    Folks, we have ourselves a mess.

  124. vinod(118083 comments)-
    March 22, 2009 at 3:28 pm

    John Coates, University of Cambridge neuroscientist and former trader found that
    traders in London who buy and sell securities, sometimes in amounts greater than $1 billion, but hold their positions for minutes, sometimes only seconds. He found that traders with a longer ring finger than index finger made more money.
    Vad- we wants to know about your finger?

    • Vadym Graifer(118083 comments)-
      March 22, 2009 at 5:02 pm

      Hmmm… let’s see:

      Pros:
      – my ring finger IS longer than index one;
      – I DO tend to hold position for rather brief time;

      Cons:
      – I am NOT in London;
      – I’ve NEVER operated in $ billions

      I don’t know where I fit in that picture πŸ™‚

    • 2nd_ave(118083 comments)-
      March 22, 2009 at 5:09 pm

      Vinod- What about yours?

      • vinod(118083 comments)-
        March 22, 2009 at 7:22 pm

        2nd
        Mine say I will not be good at short term. And my record for long term is even worse.
        So, I go with the flow and treat trading as an adventure to be experienced

  125. PapaT(118083 comments)-
    March 22, 2009 at 4:57 pm

    From [i]The Market Ticker[/i]:

    http://tiny.cc/zAInw

  126. Ron Sen(118083 comments)-
    March 22, 2009 at 5:33 pm
  127. number2son(118083 comments)-
    March 22, 2009 at 5:36 pm

    As some of you probably know, in Oakland yesterday 3 policemen were killed and one other left on life support. The killer was a 26 year-old man on parole for a felony assault conviction.

    3 Oakland officers killed, one critically hurt

    And in the same edition, I found this article from a 26 year-old journalist about the culture of violence plaguing inner-city communities.

    Where is the outcry in killing as usual?

    • loannetter(118083 comments)-
      March 22, 2009 at 5:56 pm

      Our culture has perpetuated violence via shoot em up TV, X-box video games (not to mention real wars) to the most impressionable youth. Why are we so surprised when they act out?

      • number2son(118083 comments)-
        March 22, 2009 at 6:06 pm

        Here is the most disturbing section from the Jordan Monroe column:

        In a conversation with friends at the Obama inauguration, my friend from Richmond spoke proudly about how Richmond was the murder capital of America. He said it so many times that one of the Oakland natives with us said, “It’s funny how people talk about their cities’ murder rates like they just won the Super Bowl or something.” His comment was funny, but true. The moment a member of the community is killed by someone other than another member of that community, there seems to be more of a sense of loss.

        This reflects a pathology that isn’t easily explained by television, or video games.

        • kaimu(118083 comments)-
          March 22, 2009 at 9:42 pm

          ALOHA !!

          As I have mentioned in the past I worked for four years in homeless shelters in Oakland and Berkeley areas in some very crime ridden areas. The murder rate only tells part of the picture, but certainly the gang bangers in Oakland are very proud of their murder rate, almost as if it were a competition.

          Working in the homeless environment as I did you come in close contact to death by suicide. Suicide can take the form of many paths, but lifestyle has a lot to do with it from what I saw. It was hardly ever a chosen path either, at least not consciously! Yet that is where the path ended …

          Lack of NATURE and NURTURE is certainly a major factor. That is why I mention population densities in my prior post.

          The orchids I grow are like humans. If I plant them close together they die sooner I noticed, so I have started planting them further apart, something none of the other orchid growers here do as they are all more interested in high production and not quality of life. Many orchid growers here are shocked to hear I replant every ten years, while they replant every six years. I met up with a large grower at another nursery the other day to look at his field stock and I saw how his orchid plants were bunched together with hardly any room to breathe. I mentioned how I am using a wider plant pattern and his reply was production based, but yet he ends up replanting sooner, so in the LONG RUN, I believe my plant patterns actually will produce more product, but almost anyone I run into in this World is on a SHORT TERM PLAN! That is being proven to be a huge mistake …

          THERE IS A REAL WORLD AFTER ALL!

          • casey(118083 comments)-
            March 23, 2009 at 12:38 am

            Suicide can take the form of many paths, but lifestyle has a lot to do with it

            Very true

            Yes my friend , you are right about lifestyle and how we grow life ripples out. I am honored to know you as a grower. It saddens me to see how many people mistreat the life they work along side of.

            The modern farm industry breeds fear, that fear , those emotions go into the Animals / Plants treated in terrible / stressful conditions and when people eat or use that produce it does ripple directly into your life.

            The next time one eats at any mass food chain ask yourself… how much fear you are eating. At first some people laugh at what I say… until I remind them of this:

            Mammals produce stress hormones in bad conditions, those hormones go straight into their body and then into what you eat in directly in turn. That’s how it translates to eating fear.

            Then you show them the conditions the animals are in…

            At which point they get it and see the direct connection.

            This is the world we have made…

            We can unmake these problems simply in acting in a kinder ways, and I am very honored to know you Kaimu πŸ™‚

  128. swissrobinson(118083 comments)-
    March 22, 2009 at 6:14 pm

    Kaimu: >”This is why I like to look at Zimbabwe … Yes, it is extreme and in Africa, but if dirt poor Africans with hyperinflation of 5000%”

    You underestimate the inflation rate – it’s reportedly 79.6,000,000,000% (billion percent) PER MONTH! I’m not certain that our masters will bury us with this sort of pain, on this occasion.

    >”This is why I started buying farmland back in 1998 … Not just seasonal farmland, but farmland that produces FOOD all year round as well.”

    You’ll want to read Jared Diamond’s “Collapse”. The environmental collapse of Easter Island and other Polynesian settlements due to over exploitation should be of interest to you.

    …and watch out for those volcanoes…:)

    • kaimu(118083 comments)-
      March 22, 2009 at 6:28 pm

      ALOHA !!

      You’re right, I can’t keep pace with Zimbabwe inflation? Obviously Zimbabwe citizens have given up as well!

      Have you ever even been to the Big Island? What over exploitation? What is 37 humans per sq mile? Where I am its more like 15 humans per sq mile!

      I’ll take a volcano any day compared to LA or NYC! Whats the murder rate where you are?

  129. swissrobinson(118083 comments)-
    March 22, 2009 at 7:30 pm
  130. NYUGrad(118083 comments)-
    March 22, 2009 at 8:42 pm

    http://tinyurl.com/c5vtn2

    “The Fed’s Big Move Puts the Brakes on the Buck”
    http://tinyurl.com/dyz2y3

    My take is that the above will result in a great week for financials, precious metals, and tech stocks that can win business overseas (ie IBM). Basically any growth company that will benefit from orders resulting by a weak usd.

    Just my opinions.

  131. jock(118083 comments)-
    March 22, 2009 at 8:45 pm

    Here, here, Kaimu –

    A few weeks back, I had a long-established local tuck-pointing company (owned by an Italian-American family) handle some work up top of my building. Of course, the crew was Mexican. There were extremely dedicated and hard-working. Good guys too. Speaking spanish with them, I could tell.

    I also asked if they brought their skills with them from Mexico. They said, no, they had learned the work here.

    The owners of the firm confirmed that they were reliable, and harder working than local workers.

    This firm had bid ONE THIRD what the company with an all-American union crew had bid.

    What’s not to like? I couldn’t afford NOT to work with this firm, and felt confident in their skills after talking with the crew.

    Jock

    • Dr. Strangelove(118083 comments)-
      March 22, 2009 at 9:27 pm

      I was involved with the founder of a roofing company in the sale of the company $35m last year and he said Mexican laborers were the best thing that ever happened to his business. Later had one of his crews putting a roof on two homes and found these all Mexican crews to be very hard working and happy. Made me realize these guys were making a lot more here than back home, gaining skills, learning English. No preconceived notions of entitlement helps.

      • Chickenpookie(118083 comments)-
        March 22, 2009 at 10:45 pm

        I can attest that Mexican laborers are hard working and perform top quality work. The craftsmanship of my home in Austin was excellent! There’s no doubt that while in the US, Mexican workers provide a service that adds value to the economy, but let me ask, do these workers also pay the same income tax? The average US worker works what, nearly 4 months/yr just paying income taxes, correct?

  132. freedomlover(118083 comments)-
    March 22, 2009 at 11:39 pm

    It’s easy to pick on Buffett now, and even the last decade, but his outperformance came at an earlier time as anyone with a long term chart can see.

    The chance of someone duplicating that growth is quite small, near zero.

    • Bill Cara(118083 comments)-
      March 23, 2009 at 12:07 am

      Who’s picking on Buffett? I’m not. I have always pointed to his outstanding track record. I also say that having reached the size that Berkshire is today, and in recent years, he is impacted by the law of big numbers. Most of us are not. Some of us, I believe, will be able to achieve his lifetime +26% Annualized Total Return performance, and while I think the percentage will be low, it will be much higher than “near zero,” in my opinion. But, again, it comes down to the size of AUM, the risk profile and the action of the markets.

      btw, freedomlover is a great name.

  133. David(118083 comments)-
    March 22, 2009 at 11:40 pm

    are picking up steam. So it looks like 2nd_ave was correct in saying that I won’t see FAS at $4, at least until the current rally will die from euphoria. As I posted earlier, the usually optimistic Don Coxe, who was saying at $850 on S&P 500 that the markets are setting up a big rally instead of testing the November 20 lows, said this Friday that he is not ready to commit a lot of capital to the general market (aside from commodities, which he always thinks are going up) until the government gets their act together. I’ll see what John Hussman has to say tonight, but last Sunday he said that he sold most of his positions during the first week of the rally and is now preparing for the worst. So who are the sellers that will take the market to new lows now? Those who wanted to sell based on the “doom and gloom” scenario sold two weeks ago. Now we need a MAJOR disappointment to kill short this rally before it dies from euphoria on its own.

    • 2nd_ave(118083 comments)-
      March 23, 2009 at 2:03 am

      David- Well, Japanese banks are higher despite earlier concerns they would be sold:

      http://tinyurl.com/dfsyjq

      Of course, we’re still 9 3/4 hours away from pre-market trading in the US. Too bad- I would be paring back on the MarketWatch headline right now: “Nikkei 225 returns from long break to jump 1.8% on financials’ gains”

  134. Bill Cara(118083 comments)-
    March 23, 2009 at 12:01 am
  135. grandpagross(118083 comments)-
    March 23, 2009 at 1:32 am

    My browser freezes up when i visit here and i get the following message.

    “A script on this page may be busy, or it may have stopped responding. You can stop the script now, or you can continue to see if the script will complete.

    Script: http://caracommunity.com/sites/default/files/js/73a26a4b4f7ef4431b7a4a47189b433c.js:13

    does anyone else get this error here? is it anything to worry about?

    • Chickenpookie(118083 comments)-
      March 23, 2009 at 1:40 am

      “does anyone else get this error here? is it anything to worry about?”

      Nothing to worry about, there are some minor bugs in the site… Apparently some browsers handle these bugs better than others, I think someone said Chrome works well. I’m still using Firefox and just ignore the script errors.

      • Mark Barry(118083 comments)-
        March 23, 2009 at 1:47 am

        CP- Saw your post on TNA. Congrats! You smoked me. I held my remaining shares and added AH on Friday. I assume you are holding the shares that filled your limit order.

        • Chickenpookie(118083 comments)-
          March 23, 2009 at 2:22 am

          Mark – I went looking for something new to trade, so bought BC @$3.17 just before it went to $2.98. Same thing happened last time I bought BC, Ha,Ha!!! That’s okay, it’s now $3.5 and should reach $3.7 with ease.

          But I should’ve bought BA. Gonna try trading real equities on the way up cause I think they’ll beat the 2x/3x synthetics.

      • grandpagross(118083 comments)-
        March 23, 2009 at 1:52 am

        thanks
        I got nervous because i remember someone saying something about someone attempting to hack this site not long ago.

    • Mackinaw(118083 comments)-
      March 23, 2009 at 2:06 am

      The Javascript bugs get particularly nasty on the weekends as the number of comments rise to 2+ pages. For example, clicking on a most recent comment on the home page (which would be on page 2+) takes you to page 1, which hangs for 30 seconds. Then, after it loads, you click on the “Next” pagination link and it hangs for another 30 seconds, before loading page 2. Great – you just lost 80% of your new visitors. Suggesting that Chrome, or some other Beta browser is the way to go is ludicrous; Firefox is the premier browser on the planet. The problem is all the page-tracking code. Ditch it, already!

      • Bill Cara(118083 comments)-
        March 23, 2009 at 2:26 am

        Mac, and others, your comments re the Script Error are appreciated. We love the power of this platform but it takes time to get it under control. Keep commenting and korvus will respond. There are a lot of techies out there who can help. Believe me — all the help we can get will be much appreciated.

  136. Jack Handey(118083 comments)-
    March 23, 2009 at 1:37 am
  137. Spuds(118083 comments)-
    March 23, 2009 at 1:52 am

    Matt Taibbi of Rolling Stone has put together a good story on AIG. http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/story/2679390

  138. freedomlover(118083 comments)-
    March 23, 2009 at 2:17 am
  139. terryC(118083 comments)-
    March 23, 2009 at 2:18 am

    Hi Bill,

    I really enjoyed today’s WIR, and particularly appreciate your perspective on BA. I think the regional jet manufacturer Bombardier ( BBD.B.TO ) holds similar promise for many of the same reasons, including the fat order book. Faced with the prospect of raging inflation as a result of the money printing going on now to deal with the financial crisis, it seems a safe bet for airlines to each commit hundreds of millions of dollars to orders that will be paid for with cheaper dollars a few years from now. A good inflation hedge, IMHO.

    • Bill Cara(118083 comments)-
      March 23, 2009 at 2:46 am

      yes, I mentioned BA, ERJ and TXT without referring to Canada’s BBD.B.TO, and I should have because within the Bombardier group I have the highest regard for their Q400 airplanes. I’m even pulling the arm of Bob Deluce to get his outstanding Porter Airlines to bring his planes here to Bahamas. Those planes can even land on very small airstrips in the Family Islands and refuel in Freeport on the way home to north-east Canada and the US. If you happen to know Bob, send him my message and he’ll laugh because he loves it here, he met me here, he told me his planes will easily fly this far, and he knows I continue to pull his arm. He recently opened in Chicago, so I hope Porter does well there. BTW, Bob is just an amazing guy — he has started about six airlines and they all have made a profit — while he was there. He chose the Bombardier plane well. When fuel costs escalate, it is a wonderful solution for a regional carrier.

  140. jock(118083 comments)-
    March 23, 2009 at 2:24 am

    Hussman is usually cool, calm, collected, and detachedly analytical. Tonight, he’s fuming – at how bondholders are being kept whole at the expense of our children and grandchildren:

    http://www.hussmanfunds.com/wmc/wmc090323.htm

    He doesn’t believe TurboTaxTimmy’s plan will be well received tomorrow …

  141. Chickenpookie(118083 comments)-
    March 23, 2009 at 2:32 am

    Nice gain in Asia, led by financials, right?

    • Bill Cara(118083 comments)-
      March 23, 2009 at 2:52 am

      chicken, you are right! Big moves in Asia-Pacific markets at the open.

  142. Mackinaw(118083 comments)-
    March 23, 2009 at 2:47 am
    • Bill Cara(118083 comments)-
      March 23, 2009 at 2:49 am

      Mac, this is a huge deal. Oh Canada!

  143. Bill Cara(118083 comments)-
    March 23, 2009 at 2:54 am

    The Huffington Post is reporting Pandit Told Congress Compensation Was $1 Million, But Bank Filing Shows $10.8 Million.
    Citigroup Chief Executive Vikram Pandit received nearly $11 million of compensation in 2008.

    A month earlier, he testified to Congress that his compensation for 2008 was just $1 million. “My compensation for the year 2008 was my salary, which was $1 million,” he told the House Committee on Financial Services on February 11, failing to mention his sign-on and retention awards, as well as stock and option awards.

    At the same hearing, Pandit pledged to accept a salary of just $1 a year and no bonus until Citibank once again posted a profit.

    The $10.82 million in total compensation for 2008 consisted of $7.73 million in sign-on and retention awards, a $958,333 salary, $9.84 million of stock and option awards and $16,193 of other compensation.

    —————————————————————————-

    btw, the AIG “bonuses” were “sign-on and retention awards” so why isn’t Citigroup CEO Vikram Pandit’s life being similarly destroyed by the American president and the dim-wits who embrace vigilante justice?

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vikram_Pandit

    Jay Leno, wake up to what’s happening to America.

  144. EDC(118083 comments)-
    March 23, 2009 at 3:14 am

    Not to get conspiracy’ish but this video is daunting.

    http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=7718996325

    There are many dots that I have read or watched over the past six months….

    this video sure did connect a lot of dots.

    Long video but definitely worth expanding an imagination.

  145. NYUGrad(118083 comments)-
    March 23, 2009 at 3:29 am

    http://tinyurl.com/cz37cz

    Excerpt
    “The new Public-Private Investment Program will initially provide financing for $500 billion with the potential to expand up to $1 trillion over time, which is a substantial share of real-estate related assets originated before the recession that are now clogging our financial system.”

  146. shark_attack(118083 comments)-
    March 23, 2009 at 3:33 am

    I am getting behind your “gold to $2000 by years end” pick. I am really starting to feel that all this market needs is the for the market to essentially reprice gold and silver in light of the new inflationary realities. We all feel it coming.

    lots of new buyers will come in when they see that gold can hold above a thousand. Gold will be a real buy during this phase, as the price crosses $1200, $1400…and on toward your price target.

    If I’m right the market will become very heated, with a strong emotional component and a nation, a world really gripped by a new “gold fever”.

    I actually expect gold to see $2500 an ounce, as phase I of it’s move ultimately to…yes….to $10,000 U.S. Peso’s per ounce, ultimately.

    Buying the coins and stashing them is the best investment you can make with your peso’s now.

    Those silver eagles are also really really nice too, with a really cool design on the reverse. I highly recommend trading whatever peso’s you may have lying around to these forms. They’re beautiful, and they have magical properties as well.

  147. NYUGrad(118083 comments)-
    March 23, 2009 at 4:42 am
  148. MtnGntx(118083 comments)-
    March 23, 2009 at 6:41 am

    Rolling Stone magazine fires a round over the administration’s bow….
    http://tinyurl.com/cv3me8

  149. swissrobinson(118083 comments)-
    March 23, 2009 at 7:56 am

    I’ve gotten used to chrome now, and find it both significantly faster than FF and does away with the script issues here.

    I was having trouble loading pages elsewhere with FF, but I don’t know if this has changed because I ceased using free firewalls and antivirus and purchased norton. There were a couple of nasties hidden that might have been messing with my browser – norton sniffed them out on its first sweep.

  150. swissrobinson(118083 comments)-
    March 23, 2009 at 9:21 am
  151. Ron Sen(118083 comments)-
    March 23, 2009 at 10:27 am
  152. Bill Cara(118083 comments)-
    March 23, 2009 at 10:53 am

    Please move the Chat to Monday. Lots to talk about today.

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