Wednesday, June 30, 2010

A Look at the Total Stock Market Index

Tough day in the market for bulls--even bears. Seemed like both were playing chicken today. Looks like the bulls swerved down a cliff towards the end. Below is a chart of the total stock market index.


The magenta represents the volume by price bars.  As you can see, we are in tricky territory.  We have dipped below the February 5 low.  The market is literally at the edge of a precipice here. I've no predictions about which way it is going to go.  It is reasonable to expect a bounce--but the news flow will need to be supportive of that.

Monday, June 28, 2010


On Thursday, I took a position in CHNG at $7.48. It promptly went down to $7.17 or so. Thankfully, I did not see it! No, I did not have a stop loss. With a volatile stock such as this, I often do not use stop losses. I'm not saying that you shouldn't, but for some of these wild names, you can get shaken out before the move.

Let's take a look at the chart:

I thought that it was forming a nice pattern.  I believed that the VbP bars were constructive, too.  Of course, it could have gone down.  I sold 1/2 of my position @ 8.06.  I still have the other half in another account.  I would expect it to pull in.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Weekly Sector Update | 06/25/10

I have something wondrous to share with you:  Weekly Sector Charts with a twist!  I was up early this morning, and I had a thought noodling in my head. I was interested in what the short interest was for the various subsectors. I decided that I wanted to create (for you and me!) a sorted list on that.

For that I went to FINVIZ.  I calculated the number of short shares (% of float short x float).  I then multiplied that by the share price to come up with the market value of the float that was short.  The table that I prepared had % of market cap short and % of shares short.  I've a new/fast computer, and this process taxed the resources.  I've included the report within my sector report.  I hope that you will download the full report. You will not be sorry, and I guarantee that you will see some things that will surprise you!  It is in PDF, and it is very easy to read.  You can find it here.

Let's take a look at the Weekly Sector Graph. You do not have to adjust your screen.  The 24 sectors are all negative.  Only 5 of the subsectors were positive.  The broad market index was down 3.7%.  As usual, individual sector mileage varied, which is why I put these together.

[source:  data from StockCharts]

Now let's drill down and look at the subsector 10 best/worst performers.

[source:  The Wall Street Journal]

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Notes from my life

As my readers know, I do dog rescue transport.  Shortly I will be leaving with husbando in tow (he does not do this with me). We will pick up two English Setter girls and take them on a short drive to Fredericksburg.  They are heading for a pajama party in PA, and then will resume their travels tomorrow to their adoptive/foster homes in RI and CT respectively.

Our weather has been hateful, and I helped my regular transport out today at the handoff.  The picture to the left is of some very young puppies from a transport about a month ago.  It was a difficult transport because the mother dog was spooked.  She grabbed a pup and did not release.  He fainted.  I thought he was dead.  He revived quickly.

I'm happy to report that the mom and her pups were quickly adopted.  I'm happy to know that my little bit of help along the way has these good outcomes.  I wanted to share a couple of pics with you.  Here are the pups romping happily at their foster home.  The black and white guy with the ball is in the very top of the first photo.  This photo just makes me laugh!  Jaunty little pups!

Here is another dog, Cloey, playing tug of war with the pups.

And finally, here is Cloey, with Max, the black and white dog form the other two pics.  Max was adopted into this home:

It sure made my day to get these pics.  I hope that you enjoyed them too!

Wait, wait, there is more.

On Friday, I was able to visit with two of my dearest friends, Bill and Lynne.  We had a leisurely day going to the Barboursville Winery (Palladio).  I think that we laughed to loudly and earned reproachful looks from one table and approving looks from another.  Well, WE had fun. These are the only two people in my life that can make me laugh until I cry.   I was wiping tears from my eyes.  Here's a pic of us freshly sated and saturated.  Bill, Lynne, Leisa (l-r). 

I don't normally have 4 glasses of wine during the day.  Lynne was our designated driver.  I went home and went to bed.  Here's a few more pics.  Here's a stylized pic of the flower pot.

Here's one of the two horses nearby.  I remembered him from last year.  His feet were in poor shape and needed trimming.  He was a nice boy.

Now off for round two of today's canine duty. 

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Weekly Sector Report | 06/18/10

The bears were on vacation like this ursine store fixture (but a real bear in his/her former life) at Bass Pro Shops. The store is a marvel, and I can report that there were no taxidermied bulls.

 The broad market index was up 2.33%  with Basic Resources, Basic Materials and Chemicals leading the way.  Below is the graphic of the 24 broadest sectors in relation to the broad market index in blue.


(click to enlarge)

Underneath these 24 broad sectors are 148 subsectors as defined by Dow Jones. Here are the Top 10 winners/losers for the week.

Source:  WSJ Industry Tracker

I have created a chart book with the weekly/daily charts that you can find HERE  which includes the detailed list of 148 sectors sorted in order of performance.

Keep your trading wits about you and focus on your disciplines, not the opinions of others.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Weekly Sector Update | 06/11/10

Somehow this sepia photo (mine) of the water bottle seemed to be relevant to current matters.  My hope that it is not the permanent symbolism for the Gulf of Mexico.

Last week was a significant rebound in the 24 major sectors with basic resources leading the charge higher.  The major indices are at a critical juncture technically.  It's important to remember that individual stocks make sectors and sectors comprise indices.  Accordingly, looking at individual sectors can yield clues about the indices.  Underlying sector rotation  can cause chop...and if the news stream starts a fire and flames the fears of investors, then the indices will put the those flames out by stopping, dropping, and rolling...OVER.

Let's take a look at the 24 Major Sectors:

You will remember that last week, that graph was upside down.  I have created a chart book for you that you can find here.  It contains the weekly + daily charts for the 24 Sectors above.  Also, it contains all 147 DJUS sectors sorted by relative performance to the total stock market index.

For the week, the 10 Best/Worst performing industries were as follows:

 Source:  WSJ Industry Page

Next week will be a critical week as the market digests geo-political and economic information.  Keep your trading wits about you and focus on your disciplines, not the opinions of others.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Feels like Summer...........

A scorcher of a day in Virginia. I did my usual dog transport. (This is Macy, my dog).  It was a miserable day for all of them...except in the cool of the a/c in the car. . . and the fact that they get to go to a safe place.  Lots of nice dogs.  We had two escapees--that were quickly nabbed.  One slipped out of a collar and the other gnawed through a lead. 

We see e-mails from time to time of dogs slipping from rescuers.  Our group has never lost one.  But we've been close, and it is just terrifying.  Remaining calm helps and not giving chase. 

This little pup to the right had 5 siblings...  They went to Janet's Rescues in Stafford along with their mother.  She runs adoption events through the Petsmart up there.  The economy has made for a slowing adoptions.

I red convertible with two young women was ahead of me.  It had a vanity plate:  CUM GZLR

I was trying to figure out the "see you" angle, and then the reality of the plate hit me.  I cannot believe that DMV let that one get by it.  Though I'm no prude, that goes beyond the bounds of good taste.  I realize now what I wrote, and I'm going to let it stand.  Geez..

I will likely file a complaint, on behalf of all of the moms/dads of precocious spellers who are try to figure out those plates.  "Hey Mom, what does that plate spell?" Oh, it says, "see you"  ARRGGHHH, we need to exit here we need gas.

You cannot make this stuff up.

Saturday, June 05, 2010

Weekly Sector Report: 06/04/10

A tough week in the market for the bulls, but the bears were plenty happy.  The total stock market index was down 2.52 %, and all 24 of the major sectors were in the negative.  See the table below.

 (Click to make larger)

For the more detail subsectors, below are the best/worst performing over the last week.

(Click to make larger)  Source:  WSJ

I've prepared a detailed report on the sectors, which you can download here.  Make sure to adjust your pdf file viewer settings to see the charts clearly.

Thursday, June 03, 2010

COST: Holding onto a Critical Volume by Price Bar

Here's a chart of COST. I'm showing the Volume by price bars, extending the most critical VbP bar in pink.

(Click on the chart to make larger)

If it breaches that pink zone, there could be a significant air pocket below and a rough ride for those long this stock.

Position:  None as of posting date.

Wednesday, June 02, 2010

WH: Successful Bounce Trade

Because of my sector fetish, I look at quite a few stock charts.  Because of my fetish with what I affectionately call 'boneyard' stocks (stocks off the beaten path and require careful picking through!),  I have some names that I check on from time to time.

I've trade WH very successfully in the past.  I decided to take a look at it and saw that it had been decimated.  I picked up 2k shares @ $1.62.  I sold them two days later (yesterday) for $2.08.  I didn't think the surge sustainable.  I'm also mindful of Dan Fitzpatrick's great advice to consider your gain with your length of hold.

My plan was to play the bounce.  I was initially worried that the $1.85 level was not penetrated the day before.  But that hurdle was cleared with impunity.  I would consider re-entering on a pull back or some constructive consolidation.  I will resist the temptation to whine if it gaps and goes!

I DO need to work on articulating a better trade plan.  I generally do not list my planned trades here, and I try to limit crowing or grousing on good/bad trades except as there is a lesson worth sharing.  As part of my blogging was to help me solidify my thinking by writing, might that not work for my trading as well!? 

While I'm a very good researcher, and I think that I have a decent eye for charts, I'm reminded through my sub-par trading, that those skills still need some development and mastery.  Perhaps in my fear of embarrassing myself through poor picks and poor timing, I will vet my choices better--a bit like preparing steak for a guest v. cooking myself a hot dog!

I'll wrap my head around that idea more. 

Position disclosure:  no current position as of this post in WH.