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Shake Shack (SHAK) being "delivered" today.

 

Friday, January 30, 2015, Rhinelander, Wisonsin, USA 
 
The SPUs (/ESH5*) had another 20 handle overnight swing (2000.75 - 2020.50), so watch out for some added volatility this morning. Gold (/GCH5), silver (/SIH5) and oil (/CLH5*) are trading higher, as are the bonds (/ZBH5), with the dollar (/DXH5) higher and the euro (/6EH5) lower. IPO Shake Shack (SHAK) will be "delivered" to the market this morning - looking at a valuation of about $745M, with an expected opening price of $17 - $19, up from an initial $14 - $16. Be careful trading IPOs, not to mention eating burgers and fries with milk shakes! Have a great weekend and a profitable week. We will be at the Orlando World Money Show for much of next week and our daily blogs might not be posted in their typical fashion. 
 
Today's economic events:
GDP Q4
Employment Cost Index
Chicago PMI
Reuters/UofM Consumer Sentiment
USDA Ag. Prices
 
Notable earnings before today's open: ABBV, AVY, BEN, BERY, BZH, CNX, CVX, GHM, HMC, IDXX, IMGN, INGR, IR, KCG, LEA, LLY, LM, MA, MAN, MAT, MGIC, MO*, MOG.A, MOSY, NS, NVO, NWL, OFG, PCAR, SAIA, SPG, TSN, TYC, WY, XRX.
 
"Why does Sea World have a seafood restaurant? I'm halfway through my fish burger and I realize, Oh my God....I could be eating a slow learner.”-- Lynda Montgomery 
 
Follow us on Twitter (TWTR): whatsfrankthink- like us on Facebook (FB*) - Frank Walsh Prescott, AZ  -- Look for us on Linkedin (LNKD). 
You can also find us in the daily Swim Lesson chat room (10:30 - noon CST). We will also be at the Orlando trade show next week and New York show at the end of February. 
 
FHW
(* = FHW position) 
fhwoption@hotmail.com
What's Frank Thinking? | 1/30/2015 7:57:05 AM | 0 Comments
Thursday recap

 

Thursday, 1/29/15, Rhinelander, Wisconsin, USA
 
- Today's birthdays: Thomas Paine (1737); Barney Oldfield (1878); W C Fields (1880); Tom Selleck (1945); Oprah Winfrey (1954). Deaths: Robert Frost (1963); Alan Ladd (1964); Jimmy Durante (1980). 
- Most of the talk on the street, other than earnings and about AAPL*, FB*, NTFLX, and TSLA, seems to be about oil.  And on Wednesday the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) reported domestic crude oil stocks increased almost 9 million barrels last week to 406.73 million, marking the highest level since the government starting keeping records in 1982. The futures for March delivery (/CLH5*) fell 3.9% to $44.45 a barrel, and that's just about where they are trading at this early hour. The EIA numbers for Natural Gas (/NGH5) come out this morning, so pay attention if trading NatGas. Gold (/GCH5) is getting whacked again this morning - after testing 1300 again yesterday, the yellow metal is currently down about 18.00 to 1269. The US dollar (/DXH5) is up near highs of 95. 
- US equities finished to the downside Wednesday on falling oil prices and after the Federal said it would remain patient in raising near-term interest rates. (S&P 500 -1.35%, Dow -1.13%, NASDAQ -0.93%). The Fed statement said our "economy continues to expand" and that the central bank would consider financial and international developments in their decision to raise rates. Ya think?. Apple (AAPL* +5.65%) did report the largest quarterly profit in history, totaling $18 billion; the company sold 74.5 million iPhones, up 46% from last year, whereas selling in Chevron Corporation (CVX -4.20%) and Microsoft (MSFT -3.45%) weighed on the indices.
- Today's possible movers: COH, MCD, MUR, SWFT, HOG, SUNE*, TTEK, AMP, DAL*, RJET*. 
 - Another big day for economic events:
Initial Jobless Claims
Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index
Pending Home Sales
EIA Natural Gas Inventory
Results of $35B, 5-Year Note Auction
Results of $29B, 7-Year Note Auction
Money Supply
Fed Balance Sheet
 
- Notable earnings before the open: ABT, AIT, ALLY, ALV, ALXN, APD, BABA, BAX, BC, BEAV, BMS, BX, CAH, CAM, CELG, CHKP, CL, CLFD, CMS, COH, COP, CRR, CSH, DGX, DHX, DOW, DST, EMC, EPD, F*, GLOP, HAE, HAR, HGG, HOG, HP, HSY, HUB.B, ITG, IVZ, JBLU, KELYA, KEM, KMT, LLL, LRN, LSTR, MD, MJN, MMYT, MTH, NDAQ, NOC, NOK, NYCB, OSTK, OXY, PENN, PHM, POT, PSX, PSXP, RCI, RCL, RDS.A, RGLD, RGS, RTN, RYL, 
SHW, SILC, SWK, SXC, TCB, TDY, TKR, TMO, TWC, UBSI, VIAB, VLO, VLY, VRTS, WCC, WILN, WRLD, XEL, ZMH;
and after today's close: ABAX, ALGN, AMZN, AVNW, BCR, BIIB, BRCM, BXP, CB, COHR, CORT, CPHD, CPSI, CTCT, DECK, EFII, ELX, ELY, EMN, EPAY, FICO, GDOT, GIMO, GOOG, HA, HBI, HLIT, INVN, ISBC, IXYS, JDSU*, LEG, MCHP, MITK, MTW, N, NATI, NEU, NFG, NGVC, PCCC, PFG, PFPT, PKI, PMCS, QLGC, RHI, RVBD, SFG, SWI, SYNA, TFSL, TUES, UIS, V, VR, WERN .
- Current prices (7:00 am Central time):
E-mini S&P Futures  2,001.75  (+0.51%)  
E-mini DOW Futures  17,194  (+0.55%)  
E-mini NASDAQ Futures  4,137.50  (+0.32%)  
Crude Oil  44.50  (+0.11%)  
 
 "If at first you don't succeed, try, try again. Then quit. There's no point in being a damn fool about it." - W C Fields 
 
Follow us on Twitter (TWTR): whatsfrankthink- like us on Facebook (FB*) - Frank Walsh Prescott, AZ  -- Look for us on Linkedin (LNKD). 
You can also find us in the daily Swim Lesson chat room (10:30 - noon CST). We will also be at the Orlando trade show next week and New York show at the end of February. 
 
FHW
(* = FHW position) 
fhwoption@hotmail.com 
What's Frank Thinking? | 1/29/2015 8:06:38 AM | 0 Comments
College cafeteria stock?

 

Wednesday, January 28th, 2015, Rhinelander, Wisconsin, USA 
 
Back in our college days a girlfriend was a waitress at the Black Angus in Tempe, Arizona, and she came home almost every night with about $100 in tips. At the same time we were tending bar at the Straw Hat Pizza Palace, and although not making 100 bucks a night in tips, the job did have it's benefits (read: free beer and pizza!). We also had friends that worked at a few of the on-campus eateries, which we would take advantage of via their cooking or pouring "mistakes" - whether by chance or on purpose. So we were fed pretty consistently through much of our Tempe college days at just a few geographically and financially friendly establishments. Oddly enough, all of the food, at the restaurants and on campus, came from, at the time, the largest university cafeteria company in the country, with about 375 campuses being served - Saga Foods. In fact, ASU's "Grand Marketplace" was Saga's biggest account, even if their food wasn't really that "grand". 
 
Founded on the east coast, at NY's Hobart College, the three founders eventually gave way to large corporate America, making the chief of consumer services at the giant W.R.Grace company their president. Saga then moved to Menlo Park, California, building their own corporate campus. The multiple building company concept and corporate culture, including paddle tennis and volleyball courts, in the 1970s, has in fact been copied by many of today's largest firms, with everything from technology outfits to yoga pants makers following many of Saga Foods' corporate structure and headquarter ideas. 
 
Saga is no longer an independent food service company, now being part of the private equity firm Golden Gate Capital. Saga might actually have been the first stock purchase we ever made, through the "blur" of our college days, we do kind of remember buying some stock sometime back in the early 1970s. At the time it might have been on a bet, but now looking back, perhaps it was an early indication of how we prefer trading underlyings and their options that are leaders in their industry, that we KNOW and have some personal relationship. Having never worked for a company that provided benefits or a stock option plan, we can't relate to owning stock in our employer, even though being the president of our own little privately held corporation makes us the sole owner of all the stock, obviously there are no options available. 
 
Hey, that just gave us an idea... How about trading options on privately held corporations and/or part of same? Could we sell some Saga puts inside the Golden Gate Capital umbrella? Would we? We haven't been in college for a very long time, but the heir-to-the-mortage might be able to fill us in on college cafeteria food. Oh wait, now that he is in an apartment, the dorm food is not on his daily diet plan. In fact, it wasn't even his favorite dining spot when he did live in the dorm. Chipotle (CMG) on the other hand... 
 
"A society that thinks the choice between ways of living is just a choice between equally eligible 'lifestyles' turns universities into academic cafeterias offering junk food for the mind.”- George Will 
 
Like us on Facebook (FB*) -- https://www.facebook.com/frank.walsh.169 or follow us on Twitter (TWTR) at whatsfrankthink or on Linkedin (LNKD) 
We will also be at the February trade shows in Orlando and New York. And also look for us in the daily Swim Lesson chat room 10:30 - noon CDT. Anyone without a TDAmeritrade (AMTD*) account can open a PaperMoney account - go to www.thinkorswim.com 
 
FHW 
fhwoption@hotmail.com
(* = FHW position)
What's Frank Thinking? | 1/28/2015 7:21:53 AM | 0 Comments
Tuesday Tidbits (01/27/15)

 

Tuesday, January 27, 2015, Rhinelander, Wisconsin, USA 
 
- Today's Birthdays: Samuel Gompers (1850); Kaiser Wilhelm (1859); Art Rooney (1901); William Randolf Hearst (1908); Troy Donohue (1936). Deaths on 1/27: Paul "Bear" Bryant (1983); L Ron Hubbard (1986); and Andre "the Giant" Rousimoff (1993). It was on this day in 1880 that Thomas Edison patented the electric incandescent lamp, and in 1918 the 1st Tarzan film, "Tarzan of the Apes", opened at the Broadway Theatre. In 1944 Leningrad, after 880 days and over 600,000 deaths, was liberated from German forces, and in 1948 the 1st tape recorder was sold. "Introducing the Beatles" was released on this day in 1964, and in 1973, UCLA won their record breaking 61st consecutive NCAA basketball game, then in 1976 "Laverne & Shirley" debuted on ABC. 
- Stocks ended slightly higher yesterday (01/26) as many traders dealt with a major snowstorm on the East Coast, but it now looks like, as usual, the storm that the media built up to historic levels might not be all that impactful (S&P 500 +0.26%, Dow +0.03%, NASDAQ +0.29%). SPUs (/ESH5*) are currently trading down 15 handles to the 2039 area, after trading as high as 2055 overnight. Gold (/GCH5*) has been testing the 1300 level, but its currently trading where it was last week at this time. Crude futures for March delivery (/CLH5*) have mostly continued their slide - down from last week's 48 - 49 range to their overnight low of 44.81 - now trading near multi-year lows of just over 45.00. But has the bottom in oil been found as the OPEC Secretary General, Abdullah al-Badri, suggested on Monday? The dollar (/DXH5) is sligtly lower but clinging to the 95 level, while the newly-elected anti-austerity Greek president might have taken the euro (/6EH5) down dramatically immediately after the election, but the euro has managed to rally back - if only to the 1.13 level. S&P downgraded Russia on Monday, taking the severely beaten ruble even lower, as they blamed lower oil prices - perhaps S&P should have thought of that when oil was over 100 and pre-US sanctions! The VIX dropped 6.84% to 15.52. The 30-year bonds (/ZBH5) have been clinging to the 150 level, trading slightly lower on Monday as their yields rose to 2.40%, with the 10-year and 5-year yields climbing to 1.83% and 1.34% respectively. The 30s are currently up 0.'13 to 150. Thanks to the now weakening "historic storm" the Treasury Dept. pushed back its auction of $26 billion in 2-year notes to Wednesday (01/28), they will also sell $35 billion in 5-year notes and $29 billion in 7-year debt on Thursday (01/29). 
- Today's possible stock movers and shakers: MSFT* is trading down about 10% on weak earnings and lowered expectations, other movers might be AAPL*, FB*, CZR*, PHG, CCL, PBR*, CREE*, INTC, PFE. 
- Today's economic events:
FOMC Meeting Begins
Redbook Chain Store Sales
Durable Goods Orders 
S&P Case-Shiller Home Price Index 
PMI Services Flash 
New Home Sales 
Consumer Confidence 
Richmond Fed Manufacturing Index 
State Street Investor Confidence Index 
Notable earnings before the opening: AAL, ABMD, AKS, AMG, AOS, AUDC, AVX, BMY, BTU, CAT, CIT, COH, DD, DHR, DOV, ERIC, FCFS, FCX, FMER, GLW, IIVI, ISSI, ITW, LMT, LXK, MMM, NEE, NUE, NVS, OSK, PFE, PG, PH, PHG, PII, PLD, SNV, TDG, WAT;
and after today's close: AAPL*, ACE, AMCC, AMGN, ARAY, BXP, CLMS, CNI, CNMD, CYT, DOX, EA, ETH, EZPW, FSL, FTK, ILMN, JNPR, MRCY, OTEX, POL, SYK, T, TSS, VMW, WDC, X, YHOO.
- Current prices: (6:30 am Central time)
E-mini S&P Futures  2,041.75  (-0.57%)  
E-mini DOW Futures  17,476  (-0.78%)  
E-mini NASDAQ Futures  4,239.25  (-0.70%)  
US Dollar Index  94.592  (-0.22%)  
Crude Oil  45.08  (-0.16%)  
 
"In life you will have your back up against the wall many times. You might as well get used to it." 
"There's no substitute for guts." -- Paul "Bear" Bryant
  
Remember to sign into the daily live Swim Lesson - it is found up on the Support/Chat tab, and runs between 10:30 - noon CT. And also make your plans for the upcoming February trade shows in Orlando and New York. For more info on the shows including a list of events go to www.moneyshow.com. 
If you are not a TD Ameritrade / thinkorswim (AMTD*) customer you can open a PaperMoney account at www.thinkorswim.com 
 
- Like us on Facebook (FB*) -- https://www.facebook.com/frank.walsh.169 or follow on Twitter(TWTR) at whatsfrankthink, or on Linkedin (LNKD).
 
FHW
(* = FHW position)
fhwoption@hotmail.com 
What's Frank Thinking? | 1/27/2015 7:56:51 AM | 0 Comments
Pennies in front of a bulldozer?

 

Monday, January 26, 2015, Rhinelander, Wisconsin, USA 
 
In an option oddity/calendar quirk, the month of February may be the shortest month of any year, but in 2015 it is a five-week monthly expiration cycle. Despite last week being the first week of the short month of February's expiry, there are still four-weeks to go in the montly cycle. So, what do we do, you are wondering? The volatility has been upticking in many of the underlyings that we follow and have positions in, and at this point in the cycle, that can be both a good and a bad thing. Higher volatility is usually considered a good thing for options traders, as the prices of both the calls and the puts should be escalated. But if you have already sold them, and there are still four full weeks to go, it is probably not making you smile. However, if you have been riding the fences and have yet to sell any Feb. monthly "stuff" - now might be a good time. If you were looking to sell some puts either to hedge short deltas, or possibly buy stock cheaper, and your underlying has fallen off over the last couple of weeks, the February monthly puts should be relatively "juicy." 
 
And if the February monthly volatility is high-enough then even the call side might be slightly elevated, and if either looking to cut some long deltas or get short an underlying, now might not be a bad time to use the February monthly calls as a sell to open. Depending on the product, of course, some delta neutral type traders might even sell some iron condors in this environment. Just because the volatility index (VIX) has fallen from it's mid-January 23 level to it's current 15 handle, some individual equities have upticked in volatility levels. 
 
Whether selling naked calls or puts, verticals on either side, or iron condors, and again depending on the underlying's volatlity and the width of the bid/as spreads, you have to WORK YOUR ORDERS. Yes, yes, yes, we know that you can't get in between a bid/ask spread if it is only a couple of cents wide, but if a nickel or more wide, you might enter your sell a penny under the offer side and your bid a penny above the bid. If you can save .02 per spread when the bid/ask is only a nickel wide on both the entry and the close it really begins to add up, especially on a percentage basis. And, just think of the possibilities if trading series' where the bid/ask is even wider! Just a couple weeks ago for instance, we were trying to roll a close-to-the-money short put from last week's Jans to Febs, the near term strike's bid/ask was .30 cents wide and the Feb bid/ask was .70 cents wide. At the time the mid-price on the platform for the roll was .80, so a partial was entered at +.90 and the fill (which was immediate) rang the bell at +1.00. The balance was then entered at +1.00 and also filled immediately. 
 
We have been stressing for months the importance of working orders and the above example proves our point. The battle for business between the numerous new exchanges and the firms continues to rage on, and we have to take advantage of the better fills as long as they continue giving them to us. The old adage of "picking up pennies in front of a bulldozer" might still be relevant, but the pennies have turned to quarters (better fill prices) and the bulldozer (single exchange) is now more-the-size of a few Tonka Trucks (multiple exchanges). And the added week in the February monthly cycle just might have added a little to the premium, and widened the bid/asks, making the quarters a little brighter and the Tonka trucks a little lighter. 
 
"FHW - you ain't like a bull in a china shop, you're more like a bulldozer in a plastic store." -- HUH to FHW (OEX pit circa 1986) 
 
Follow us on Twitter (TWTR): whatsfrankthink, like us on Facebook (FB*) - Frank Walsh Prescott, AZ or on Linkedin (LNKD), and join us in the online Swim Lesson chat room - everyday at 10:30 AM Central time. We 
 
will be at the World Money Show in Orlando 2/5 - 2/7 and the New York Trader's Expo at the end of February.
 
FHW 
(* = FHW position)
fhwoption@hotmail.com 
What's Frank Thinking? | 1/26/2015 6:42:07 AM | 0 Comments
Euro QE - have a nice weekend!

 

Thursday, 1/22/15, Rhinelander, Wisconsin, USA
 
- Today's birthdays: Birch Bayh (1928); Sam Cooke (1931); Bill Bixby (1934); Steve Perry (1949). Deaths: Queen Victoria (1901); Lyndon B Johnson (1973); Telly Savalas (1994); Rose Fitzerald Kennedy (1995). January 22nd has historically been a relatively boring day, that is unless you were among the British troops attacked by the Zulus in 1879 in Isandhlwana, South Africa. The largest block of cheese was manufactured in Wisconsin on 1/22/1964 (15,723 kg), and in 1968 "Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In" premiered on NBC, while the NBA announced new teams in Phoenix and Milwaukee. The US Supreme Court via Roe vs Wade legalized some abortions in 1973, and in 1998 the NHL's Minnesota franchise selected the nickname "Wild" - we still call them the Northstars! 
- Stocks were mostly higher on Wednesday (1/21) on a rise in oil and reports that implied the European Central Bank (ECU) would launch a bond buying QE type program in line with weak Euro expectations. All the US indices were higher (S&P 500 +0.47% Dow +0.22%, NASDAQ +0.27%). Crude oil futures for March (H) delivery rose $1.41 to $47.78 a barrel. Hence the oil patch and materials outperformed the broader market indices. The Energy Index (XLE) was about 71 last week, but is now up near 77. 
- The overnight SPUs (ESH5*) had a more typical range of "only" ten handles - trading between 2025 and 2035 and are currently splitting the difference - trading 2030. Last week at this time they were trading in the exact same price, although they had a 40 point range! Gold (/GCG5*) which was trading at 1261 last week is now in the 1283 handle, but with the talk of the ECU doing their own version of Qualitative Easing, it did get up to 1307 on Wednesday (1/21). The dollar (/DXH5) is also trading at about the same spot as last week, whereas the 30-year bonds (/ZBH5) are trading well off last weeks 151 area - currently just under 148.   
- Today's possible movers: NFLX, BBRY*, DHI, VZ*, EBAY, ENDP, DFS, FFIV. The EIA Petro and Gas inventory numbers come out today, so look for some swings in the oil patch this morning. Tomorrow is weekly expiration Friday, and not unlike last week, there seem to be dozens of underlyings about to "pin" whole numbers. Because of the possible pin and the fact that so many are paying dividends or having earnings announcements, if you have any option positions that are In-The-Money (ITM) or close to it and you don't understand the stock or cash ramifications it would be prudent to call the trade desk at 866 839 1100. 
 - Another big day for economic events:
Initial Jobless Claims
FHFA House Price Index
Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index
EIA Natural Gas Inventory
EIA Petroleum Inventories
Money Supply
Fed Balance Sheet
 
- Notable earnings before the open: ALK, AVT, BBT, BKU, BPOP, COV, CP, CY, DLX, FBC, FCS, FNB, GMT, HBAN, JCI, JNS, KEY, LUV, NTCT, ORI, PCP, QSII, SBNY, TDY, TRV, TZOO, UAL, UNP, VZ*, WBS, XRS;
and after today's close: ALTR, ASB, CE, COF, CYN, DGII, EGHT, ETFC, FII, HBHC, HXL, INFN, ISRG, KLAC, MSCC, MXIM, PLCM, RMD, SBUX, SIVB, SWKS, WAL.
- Current prices (7:00 am Central time): 
E-mini S&P Futures  2,030.75  (+0.21%)  
E-mini DOW Futures  17,534  (+0.25%)  
E-mini NASDAQ Futures  4,185.50  (+0.07%)  
Crude Oil  48.94  (+2.43%)  
 
"We are not interested in the possibilitiesof defeat. They do not exist." -- Queen Victoria 
 
Follow us on Twitter (TWTR): whatsfrankthink- like us on Facebook (FB*) - Frank Walsh Prescott, AZ  -- Look for us on Linkedin (LNKD). 
You can also find us in the daily Swim Lesson chat room (10:30 - noon CST). We will also be at the Orlando and New York trade shows in February. 
 
FHW
(* = FHW position) 
fhwoption@hotmail.com 
What's Frank Thinking? | 1/22/2015 7:59:31 AM | 0 Comments
Grocery shopping?

 

Wednesday, January 21, 2015, Rhinelander, Wisconsin, USA 
 
Now that we are back in Rhinelander the retail outlets we have to select from has been severely narrowed from the vast amount of choices we had in Arizona. One of our long term sports afficianado friends actually questions how we can survive in a town without a Dick's Sporting Goods (DKS), Sports Authority, or even a Cabella's (CAB). Well, there is a brand-spanking-new Dunham's in town, and a giant-sized Cabella's just down the road in Wausau. Mel's Trading Post in town is owned by a friend; although mostly about fishing, bikes, canoes, kayaks and guns, it does offer a selection of some sporting goods and high-end athletic apparel, and is our favorite store in town. 
 
What about groceries? "Ya gotta eat" - as they would say in Chicago. Well, the in-town Trig's Grocery Store is top-of-the-line, with their world class/award winning Smokehouse meats made right in town, and they were just named the Beverage Store of the Year by a nation-wide industry publication. Rhinelander's Golden Harvest store is about as close to a Whole Foods as you will find; their selection of organics and locally raised meats and poultry products is world class, and their fresh-out-of-the-oven crusty sourdough bread is the best we have ever had. A large Quik-Trip just opened nearby, and Aldi (from the same folks that own Trader Joe's) on Lincoln is the only store in town that sells spicy/hot Italian Giardinier. The Menard's Home Improvement store also sells some food-stuffs, and while shopping for garden supplies and screwdrivers, why not buy a check-out-line bag of pretzels and a case of bottled water? And, of course, there is always the 24 hour Walmart Super Store (WMT). 
 
You are now probably asking if we really shop at Walmart. Yes, we do. Not necessarily for many grocery items (see above), but for some other "home products", if you count the costs, it is the only place to go. On almost every trip to the mega-store our first purchase is a cluster of bananas, then we usually move onto the pet supply department or the pharmacy area for our vitamins etc. Believe it or not, but bananas have been one of the top-selling items at WMT for years. Yes, we do buy our bananas at WMT! In fact, the company sells about a BILLION pounds of them annually, which works out to about 32 pounds every second of the day! Now THAT is a powerfully ripe statistic! Walmart is also the largest seller of organic milk in the world, as their over 140 million weekly U.S. shoppers spend almost $500 billion in their 4,000 nationwide stores. Walmart is also the largest private sector employer, with over 1.5 million U.S. workers and 2.2 million globally. WMT sells so much produce, in fact, that their work with international suppliers and outfits like Conservation International improve their suppliers yields, which actually might have an effect on world wide water usage and greenhouse gases, not to mention prices. They also buy from local firms; in fact, we remember when the local Walmart first started selling the new Rhinelander Beer, that small company had trouble keeping up with the newly driven Walmart demand! 
 
We haven't had a grocery store type position in a very long time, Walmart was our last position, but that was way back when it was in the $50 handle (now $87). We have also been known to frequent Kroger (KR) and Safeway (SWY) stores, which also pay dividends, but the option volatility and open interest in those two grocery chains doesn't pass our trading test. And considering how elevated almost every single security is at these lofty levels, we are not looking to open any more long positions. But on any relatively large pull-back, as you know, we do like owning market leaders, and as we said earlier "ya gotta eat." 
 
"I may be only a fish and chip shop lady, but some of these economists need to get their heads out of the textbooks and get a job in the real world. I would not even let one of them handle my grocery shopping.” - Pauline Hanson
 
Like us on Facebook (FB*) -- https://www.facebook.com/frank.walsh.169 or follow us on Twitter (TWTR) at whatsfrankthink or on Linkedin (LNKD) 
We will also be at the February trade shows in Orlando and New York. And also look for us in the daily Swim Lesson chat room 10:30 - noon CT.
 
FHW 
fhwoption@hotmail.com
(* = FHW position)
What's Frank Thinking? | 1/21/2015 7:17:44 AM | 0 Comments
European QE - Ufdah!

 

 
Tuesday, January 20, 2015, Rhinelander, Wisconsin, USA 
 
- Today's Birthdays: "Buzz" Aldrin (1930); Ivana Trump (1949); Ozzie Guillen (1964). Deaths: Johnny Weissmuller (1984). Barbara Stanwyck (1990); Audrey Hepburn (1993). On this day in 1872 the California Stock Exchange was organized, and in 1945 FDR was sworn-in for unprecedented 4th term as President. On 1/20/1965 the Beatles appeared on Shindig and the Byrds recorded "Mr. Tambourine Man". In 1981 Ronald Reagan was inaugurated as President, and in 1993 Bill Clinton was inaugurated as 42nd President. 
- After the three-day MLK weekend, it's a nice welcome back to a higher market after last week's sell-off - with the SPUs (/ESH5*) currently up 11.50 to 2024.50. Once again the overnight swing has been relatively large in the emini futures - 2003 to 2025.50, with gold (/GCG5*) also having a big swing - 1272 to 1294, currently trading 1290. Crude futures for March delivery (/CLH5*) have also been moving overnight, currently lower, with a range of 47.44 - 49.20. Unleaded gas was as low as $1.79 last weekend in Phoenix, but is still over $2.00 up here in the Northwoods of Wisconsin. 
- Margin trading in China? Oh my! We know we always question our various governmental branch's number crunchers, but the accounting practices by the Chinese are always questionable to begin with, and then you trade their stocks on margin... once again - OH MY! That sounds like walking through a mine-field, hungover and blindfolded, while juggling hand grenades in a hurricane. Anyway, China just reported that it's already questionable economy "ONLY" expanded 7.4% in 2014, the slowest pace in 24 years. Might as well stay away from home as the ECB is expected to announce their plans to do a US-like quatitative easing (QE) and buy a bunch of their own government bonds. Gosh, just what we want, Spanish or Greek bonds! But, printing money is so easy for most of these sorry governmental/financial leaders. Thankfully Germany's Angela Merkel warned that printing money is still no substitute for stringent economic reforms. How do you say "bubble" in French? Greek? Spanish? 
- Today's possible stock movers and shakers: BAC*, BBRY*, AAPL*, SUNE*, PBR*, CME, HAL, MS. 
- Today's economic event:
NAHB Housing Market Index
- Notable earnings before Tuesday's opening: ATI, BHI, DAL*, EDU, HAL, IGTE, JNJ, MS, MTB, MTG, PETS, RF, SAP;
and after the close: ADTN, AMD*, CA, CLS, CREE*, FULT, IBKR, IBM, NFLX, SMCI, WWD.
- Current prices: (7:00 am Central time)
E-mini S&P Futures  2,025.50  (+0.62%)  
E-mini DOW Futures  17,526  (+0.54%)  
E-mini NASDAQ Futures  4,165.50  (+0.76%)  
 
"There's a need for accepting responsibility - for a person's life and making choices that are not just ones for immediate short-term comfort. You need to make an investment, and the investment is in health and education." -- Buzz Aldrin 
 
Remember to sign into the daily live Swim Lesson - it is found up on the Support/Chat tab, and runs between 10:30 - noon CT. And also make your plans for the upcoming February trade shows in Orlando and New York. For more info on the shows including a list of events go to www.moneyshow.com. 
 
- Like us on Facebook (FB*) -- https://www.facebook.com/frank.walsh.169 or follow on Twitter(TWTR) at whatsfrankthink, or on Linkedin (LNKD).
 
FHW
(* = FHW position)
fhwoption@hotmail.com 
What's Frank Thinking? | 1/20/2015 8:19:58 AM | 0 Comments
Crazy overnight moves aplenty.

 

Thursday, 1/15/15, Prescott, Arizona, USA
 
- Today's birthdays: Edward Teller (1908); Lloyd Bridges (1913); Charo (1951). U of Notre Dame was chartered in Indiana on this day in 1844, and in 1861, the steam elevator was patented by Elisha Otis. On 1/15/1915 Japan claimed economic control over China - my how the tables have turned! In 1942 the Chicago Cubs abandoned plans to put lights around Wrigley Field, but it was because of WWII - not the neighbors as it was 50 years later. In TV land - "Happy Days" premiered on ABC in 1974; the Coneheads appeared on "Saturday Night Live" in 1977, and "Hill Street Blues" premiered on NBC in 1981 - "Be careful out there." It was on this day in 2009 that a US Airways plane, captained by Chesley Sullenberger, ditched in the Hudson River - all 155 passengers survived! 
- Stocks fell again on Wednesday (1/14) on concerns about global growth and deflation. (S&P 500 -0.58%, NASDAQ -0.48%, Dow -1.06%). Utilities and energy were the leaders, while financials weakened (XLF now in the 23 handle) and consumer discretionary stocks also trailed the broader market indices. JPMorgan Chase & Co JPM -3.45%) and Wal-Mart Stores Inc (WMT -3.02%) led the losers on the Dow Jones Industrial Average. JPM fell after reporting both quarterly profit and revenue below expectations, mainly due to $1.1 billion in legal fees - lawyers win again, and the stock looks lower again this morning! A rebound in oil prices helped fuel the mid-week rally, with crude having over a $2.00 overnight swing moving it back over $49, and then in last night's session the /CLH5 touched 50.15 - currently 49.85. 
- The early morning SPUs (ESH5*) had another crazy overnight session - trading down to 1986 and as high as 2027.25. Of course we were alerted but only when they went through 2025 - our downside alert was and still is set at 1969, the year we graduated from high school. Gold (/GCG5*) is flying this morning, after hitting 1261 overnight, it is currently up about 20 bucks to almost 1255. The dollar (/DXH5) also had a major overnight move (91.49 - 93.30), as did the bond (/ZBH5) - a two handle overnight move in the 30s is rare (148'11 - 150'02). 
- Today's possible movers: ADBE, BAC*, LEN, LLY, JNJ, NOC, BBRY*, DHI. 
 - Another big day for economic events:
Initial Jobless Claims
Producer Price Index
Empire State Mfg Survey
Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index
Philly Fed Business Outlook
EIA Natural Gas Inventory
Money Supply
Fed Balance Sheet
 
- Notable earnings before the open: BAC*, BLK, CVGW, C, CBSH, FAST, FRC, HOMB, LEN, PPG, TSM;
and after today's close: INTC, OZRK, PBCT, SLB, WTFC.
- Current prices (5:30 AM AZ time): 
E-mini S&P Futures  2,009.75  (+0.11%)
E-mini NASDAQ Futures  4,145.25  (-0.01%)    
E-mini DOW Futures  17,400  (+0.20%)  
US Dollar Index  91.746  (-0.45%)  
 
"No endeavor that is worthwhile is simple in prospect; if it is right, it will be simple in retrospect.” - Edward Teller
 
Follow us on Twitter (TWTR): whatsfrankthink- like us on Facebook (FB*) - Frank Walsh Prescott, AZ  -- Look for us on Linkedin (LNKD). 
You can also find us in the daily Swim Lesson chat room (10:30 - noon CST). We will also be at the Market Drive in Scottsdale this Saturday (01/10), and the Orlando and New York trade shows in February. 
 
FHW
(* = FHW position) 
fhwoption@hotmail.com 
What's Frank Thinking? | 1/15/2015 8:17:39 AM | 0 Comments
Football - BIG business - reprint.

 

Wednesday, January 14, 2015, Prescott, Az. USA.
 
Congratulations to THE Ohio State Buckeyes for winning the inaugural NCAA football championship, and to the final four NFL playoff teams - Packers, Patriots, Seahawks and Colts. 
 
A timely reprint from January, 2012. 
As the football season comes to a close, we can't help but think of what a BIG business it has become. We managed to see a few games this season; from high school and college to the NFL, the games we saw live were great and the fans enjoyed themselves at a variety of jam-packed venues. In fact, the Loyola v St. Rita high school game in Chicago was standing room only, the Northwestern v Penn State game in Evanston was also crowded, and both the NFL games we went to were fully attended. So, what kind of business would we consider "big"? How about about 4 million customers EVERY in-season weekend. 
 
The NFL averages are about 70,000 fans per game per weekend, with the Cowboys the leader with almost 83,000 at every home game. The attendance list drops down to newly revived Cincinnati and their just about 50,000 per home game, but even that number of fans flowing into the Bengal's stadium has to perk-up the Paul Brown Stadium's neighborhood. And, then there is the college game, where the numbers might not be as big, where the parking lot tailgates may be even more grandiose, therefore the amount of money spent (per fan) almost as high. But, if you haven't been to an NFL game lately, and plan on attending an upcoming playoff game, you had better bring a bushel-full of money! Okay, you are now wondering - how much money is in a bushel, or four pecks, the equivalent of 2150.42 cubic inches or 35.24 liters. Sounds like a lot, right? Well, if you pay for your tickets and parking; buy a program, have something to eat and a couple of beers during the game, your tab could come in as high as that big new scoreboard in Dallas. We figured it in the $200 - $500 range. That is not bad for a family of four, you are now thinking. Who said anything about a family? That is the PER PERSON cost! And those aren't the 50 yard-line first few row seats either!  
 
So, if there are 70,000 fans spending about 300 bucks per game, do we have you convinced that it is a big business yet?  What about the 270-or-so Division One and Two football programs?  The Dl schools (120 of them) average about 46,000 per game, and although the average spent is probably less than 1/2 that of their Sunday counterpart, there are only 32 NFL teams, so the total dollar figures are pretty similar. And to try to compare the college game to their Sunday counterparts in any financial manner would be tough, as it seems that there are a lot of kids at the Saturday games, whereas the NFL games attendance is mostly adults. 
 
Why does this matter? Well, whereas some team logo stuff might be a bigger sale at a college game to the kids, there will be more alcohol possibly consumed at the professional event. And when you consider the ticket for the NFL game might be as high as $500 and the college's down to as low as ten bucks, maybe there is a reason for the drinking being at a higher level at the NFL game! We are just coming up with some numbers of our own, based of course on first hand observation if not trial, and if the number of beers consumed at every NFL game is about two-per-fan, does that mean there are about 140,000 beers sold at every game?  How about hot dogs or other game day foods, whether out at the tailgate or inside the stadium? A hot dog, pizza, hot chocolate, Twislers, or peanuts, just about everyone has something to eat or drink at the game, and there is no way anything near an exact average figure could be counted on - so to speak. The best way to understand it is to go to a game and eat and drink as everyone else is and keep a track of your own spending, and then just multiply that number times the crowd size. Now do you wonder why that guy a few seats over has snuck in a bunch of beers?  Saying "I got this round" at an NFL game for you and your 3 pals will cost you between $25 and $50, and that is just for the beers! Maybe what you should be saying to the guy with the large overstuffed coat down your aisle is "hey buddy, can we buy some beer from ya?" 
 
Bottom line is there is a reason why the highest valued franchise in all of professional sports are NFL teams, with the Dallas Cowboys and their 80,000 fans per home game being the leader. Now all we can think of is the food and beer statistics and logistics of feeding a few million fans every weekend. Another story in the making maybe. How about that Tim Tebow?  We can't wait 'til next weekend's playoff games and just wish we could be at one - of course just to take some personal statistics.
 
This year's Super Bowl (2014/2015) will be at the home of the Arizona Cardinals in Glendale, AZ. Are we going? Heck no - too expensive! 
 
"Winning isn't everything, but the will to win IS everything.”-- Coach Vince Lombardi
 
Like us on Facebook (FB*) -- https://www.facebook.com/frank.walsh.169 or follow us on Twitter (TWTR) at whatsfrankthink or on Linkedin (LNKD) 
We will be at the February trade shows in Orlando and New York. And also look for us in the daily Swim Lesson chat room 10:30 - noon CDT.
 
FHW 
fhwoption@hotmail.com
(* = FHW position)
What's Frank Thinking? | 1/14/2015 8:16:18 AM | 0 Comments