What's Frank Thinking? rss
Everone NEEDS to HEED the markets!

 

Thursday, 9/3/15, Rhinelander, Wisconsin, USA
 
- Births: Alan Ladd (1913); Eddie Stanky (1917); Al Jardine (1942); Charilie Sheen (1965). Deaths: e.e.cummings (1962); Woody Guthrie (1967); Ho Chi Minh (1969); Vince Lombardi (1970); Frank Kapra (1991). The Treaty of Paris was signed on this day, in 1783, officially ending the US Revolutionary War, and in 1939 Britain declared war on Germany, immediately followed by France, Australia, New Zealand, Canada and South Africa. In 1984 a Chicagoan won $40 million in the Illinois state lottery - we hope they got their money, as opposed to the most recent winner being given an IOU by the near bankrupt state! 
- A dear old friend came out of the Facebook (FB*) woodwork last night and more-or-less told us to stop talking about the markets, asking where she could find only our "non-business messages". Well, we don't know if it's THESE particularly whacked-out markets our famous heart surgeon friend is referring to, or the stock market in general? But everyone should at least partly "abide the market" because in just about all facets of life the investment industry touches everyone. Whether it's the new all-day breakfasts at McDonald's (MCD), which could have been forced by their falling sales and stock price; or the price of gasoline and corn being affected by the movement in their futures, there should be a part of everyone's day that the markets are at least noticed. Sorry, Renee H., but we will continue to talk markets, because it's just about all we know, and what we do. Okay, Renee, how about those Cubbies, and how are the possibly "Kane-less" Blackhawks going to play in the upcoming NHL season? Been to Tufano's lately? Okay, back to the markets...
- Two-years ago (9/3/13) the SPUs (/ES) were trading at 1645; One year ago (9/3/14) they were trading in the 2000 range; they started the summer (5/27/15) near 2100, traded down to 1831 at the beginning of last week; back up to 1990 also last week, and have traded between 1944 and 1958 overnight. We don't know if the Grateful Dead paid any attention to the markets either, but their song "What a Long, Strange Trip it's Been" sums up the last week-and-a-half. What will the overall market do today after the European Central Bank's monetary policy meeting? Please Mr. Draghi, we hope you read this morning's news of the Eurozone business activity accelerating at its fastest pace in more than four years last month, as output growth increased in both the manufacturing and services sectors. Perhaps a hint as to no more governmental "stimulus". Japan's service sector also expanded at the quickest rate in two years, despite their floundering industrial production numbers. As to "floundering", the US markets may take a breather to end the week as the markets are closed in China to celebrate the end of WW ll. 
- Today's possible movers: CIEN, EBAY, MDT, SUNE*, SRNE*, SYT, TWTR, LCI. 
- Today's economic events:
Chain Store Sales
Challenger Job-Cut Report
Gallup US Payroll to Populaation
Initial Jobless Claims
International Trade
PMI Services Index
Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index
ISM Non-Manufacturing Index
EIA Natural Gas Inventory
Money Supply
Fed Balance Sheet 
 
"The measure of who we are is what we do with what we have." Vince Lombardi 
 
Have a great weekend! 
 
- If you are looking for a fabulous full-day of stock/options/futures education, please sign up for one of the upcoming Market Drive Saturday events. The next show is in New York (9/26) - hope to see you there.  www.tdameritradeconferences.com/marketdrive -  And look for us in the daily Swim Lesson chat room 10:30 - noon CT. Like us on Facebook (FB*) -- https://www.facebook.com/frank.walsh.169, or follow us on Twitter (TWTR) at whatsfrankthink or on Linkedin (LNKD). 
 
FHW
(* = FHW position) 
fhwoption@hotmail.com 
What's Frank Thinking? | 9/3/2015 8:05:11 AM | 0 Comments
Overnight whackiness continues!

 

Wednesday, September 2, 2015, Rhinelander, Wisconsin, USA
 
It is the Wednesday before the Labor Day weekend in which about a dozen of our pals from around the world pay a five-day visit to our Rhinelander summer home. So, as many other traders take this week off to get their kids in school, we will enjoy the rest of it preparing for the sure-to-come weekend madness. Besides, after the recent absolutely insane volatility, we need a breather! Once again the rudeness of the overnight moves waking us up in the middle-of-the-night to alert us when certain futures (/ES, /GC, /CL, /ZB) trade at much higher or lower levels is beginning to get to us. How many more nights can the SPUs (/ESU5*) make 50 handle swings like on Monday? Or last night's 32 handle move (1907 - 1939)?  Oil (/CLV5*) up 5 bucks one day, down 4 the next? C'mon "sheeted ones" take it easy on us! Bonds (/ZBZ5*) moving about 2 handles a day? They used to need a push to move a point a month! Yes, we need a break from the VIX and it's darn-near 20 point intra-week swing (35 to 25 and back to 34). Marriott (MAR) under 70? Arch Coal (ACI*) is where? Apple's (AAPL*) one month move from 122 to 92 and back to 114 got us a little sea-sick. We might take a peek at our sheets on Friday, in between golf and a few taverns, but only to see if anything is going to "pin" at one of our short strikes, and/or if something for next week has gone into-the-money. Other than that, we'll see you out on the lake, and be back for next week's hopefully cooler market climate. 
 
Please remember to trade small and stay small with risk definition being a big part of your plays. Any questions about a close-to-the-money position - call the trade desk at 866 839 1100 or Create a Request up on the Support/Chat tab's Live Support - and DO NOT WAIT UNTIL EXPIRATION! 
 
See you next week. Hopefully not from jail or the hospital! 
 
"The integrity of the game is everything." -- Peter Ueberroth (Happy Birthday!)
 
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.
The list of upcoming Market Drive events is now on the TDAmeritrade web-site - go to www.tdameritradeconferences.com/marketdrive, login and sign up. Hope to see you in New York in September. 
 
FHW 
(* = FHW position)
fhwoption@hotmail.com  
What's Frank Thinking? | 9/2/2015 7:49:20 AM | 0 Comments
Monday "Night Moves"

 

Tuesday, 9/1/15, Rhinelander, Wisconsin, USA 
 
- Births: James "Gentleman Jim" Corbett (1866); Edgar Rice Burroughs (1875); Walter Reuther (1907); Rocky Marciano (1923); Conway Twitty (1933); Lily Tomlin (1939); Barry Gibb (1946). Deaths: Louis XlV (1715). This was the day, in 1799, that the Bank of Manhattan opened in NY - forerunner to Chase Manhattan and JPMorgan/Chase (JPM), and in 1905 Alberta and Saskatchewan became the 8th and 9th Canadian Provinces. On 9/1/1939 Germany invaded Poland - starting WW ll; and in 1945, Japan surrendered - ending WW ll (9/2 in Japan). Bobby Fischer defeated Boris Spassky in 1972 for the World Chess title, and on Sept 1, 1979 an LA Court ordered Clayton Moore to stop wearing the Lone Ranger mask. 
- We were going to do our usual Monday recap, but as Bob Seeger sang, it was all about the "Night Moves." Last night a pleasant at-home 7:00pm dinner was disturbed as our cell phone's push notification buzzed when the suddenly falling SPUs (/ESU5*) went under 1950; then again, at about 9:00pm as it hit 1935; and again near 3:00am as they went under 1925. China news actually drove them down to 1919.50, but 1925 was as low as our alerts were set, and it has been trying to rally ever since (now trading near 1930). Oil (/CLV5*) alerts were also set, but because of Monday's major move (about a 5 buck run from lows), our 47 or lower mark was never met - but there is always hope, as it currently lingers around 47.80. Oh, and we can't forget the whacked-out 30-year bonds, they too set off an alert when they dipped under 154'16 also sometime around 3:00am. Gold (/GCZ5*) was relatively calm in about a 10.00 range and the dollar (/DXU5) was also pretty tight. Our family should really appreciate the fact that our night time cell phone is only set to buzz or it might have been a sleepless night for everyone in the house, and thankfully we didn't have any alerts tied to the foreign markets, or the phone could have buzzed right off the bed! 
- Today's possible up or down movers: FCX*, SUNE*, AAPL*, FB*, MSFT*, BBRY*, F*, GM*, PSX, YHOO, CALM. 
- Today's economic events:
Auto sales
Gallup US ECI
Redbook Chain Store Sales
PMI Manufacturing Index
ISM Manufacturing Index
Construction Spending
Fed's Rosengren: Economic Outlook
- Notable earnings: DRD, AMBA, BOBE, EXA, HRB, LFVN, GWRE, AVAV.  
 
"She was a black haired beauty with big dark eyes
And points all her own sittin' way up high
Way up firm and high...
Workin' on mysteries without any clues
Workin' on our night moves
Tryin' to make some front page drive-in news..." -- Bob Seeger 
 
- Like us on Facebook (FB*) -- https://www.facebook.com/frank.walsh.169 or follow on Twitter(TWTR) at whatsfrankthink, or on Linkedin (LNKD).- Remember to sign into the daily live Swim Lesson - found up on the Support/Chat tab, running between 10:30 - noon CT. The list of upcoming Market Drive events is now on the TDAmeritrade web-site - with the next 
show in NYC on 9/26, then in Denver on Oct 17th. go to www.tdameritradeconferences.com/marketdrive
 
FHW
(* = FHW position)
fhwoption@hotmail.com 
What's Frank Thinking? | 9/1/2015 8:15:38 AM | 0 Comments
Beers for breakfast?

 

Monday, August last, 2015, Rhinelander, Wisconsin, USA 
 
It was once again difficult for this old dad to bid farewell to the heir-to-the-mortgage as he boarded his Portland bound plane in Milwaukee a couple weeks ago. But, he is half-way through his hopefully four-year college career, and if the next two years go-by as fast and successfully as the first two, he will be out looking for a job in the real world in what might seem like a couple of weekly option cycles! The PGA tournament that we walked, just before he departed was great, with the Whisling Straits golf course, in Kohler, nothing short of spectacular! The condo where we stayed in the heart of downtown Milwaukee was also nice and spending time in the city with more beer history than any other in North America, and doing it from the Valentin Blatz Brewing Company Building made it even cooler. Sobleman's $50 Bloody Mary and the Calderone Club were great, and Jake's Deli's corned beef Reuben was as good as any in Chicago or New York. But, as usual for Wisconsin, it was the beer...
 
Beer history in Wisconsin? How many would think that five-of-the-top-ten longest-existing breweries in this beer crazy country would be located in The Badger State of Wisconsin. Maybe the "Badger" moniker should be changed to same name as the baseball team in Milwaukee - the Brewers. It sounds pretty catchy "The Brewer State." But would Madison's University also change their mascot? Bucky Badger is one of the cutest sports critters in college football, so we would not touch the Badger, literally and figuratively. Anyway, here is the list of the oldest existing breweries in the US: 1) 1829 - Yuengling, Pottsville, PA.; 2) 1842 - Schaefer, NY, NY (now owned by Pabst); 3) 1844 - Pabst, Milwaukee; 4) 1845 - Minhas, Monroe, WI.; 5) 1852 - Anheuser-Busch, St. Louis (BUD); 6) 1855 - Miller, Milwaukee (MO*); 7) 1857 - Stevens Point Brewery, Stevens Point, WI.; 8) 1860 - August Shell, New Ulm, MN.; 9) 1862 - Frankenmuth, Frankenmuth, MI.; 10) 1867 - Leinenkugel, Chippewa Falls, WI, (MO*). 
 
Although Blatz is now produced by Miller, as are dozens of other current beers, they were also founded in Milwaukee, in 1851, so they would be just ahead of Budweiser on the list, which would give Wisconsin 6 of the oldest eleven breweries. In fact the histories of most of the midwest breweries are all tied together in some form throughout the decades. In all our years of corporate "digging" we have never seen the amount of family crossovers, mergers, take-overs, spin-offs, and just about every other sort of company/family alteration that has occured in the Wisconsin beer industry. Several of the old firms have now merged with foreign companies, taking what were once tiny family run brewers worldwide! Many of the facts and family changes were explained to us by an actual heir to Miller Brewing's Frederick John Miller, as he and his family own a summer home two-doors-down from our Lake Thompson retreat. Our friend, the beer heir, ran for governor of the state as a very liberal democrat a few years ago (2010), and oddly enough, is still a friend! That reminds us, when are you coming up again Tim J? 
 
We have toured most of the Wisconsin beer makers facilities, even shared a couple of Summer Shandys at Eagle River's Great Northern Beer Festival with Jake Leinenkugel. Our Rhinelander home is kind of famous in the area for it's afternoon "beers in the driveway" and we have been known to "tip a few" in various Northwoods dining and drinking establishments. Yes, we are clearly impressed with the wonderful multi-generational Wisconsin beer history and it's importance to the state. Now, have we mentioned the dairy and sausage industries? Now that we think of it, perhaps at this early hour it shouldn't be beer we are talking about! Oh wait, that's right, we are still in Wisconsin - so it's okay. 
 
"The government will fail that raises the price of beer." -- Czech proverb 
 
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.
The list of upcoming Market Drive events is now on the TDAmeritrade web-site - go to www.tdameritradeconferences.com/marketdrive, login and sign up. Hope to see you in NY in September. 
 
FHW 
(* = FHW position)
fhwoption@hotmail.com
What's Frank Thinking? | 8/31/2015 8:00:29 AM | 0 Comments
A week that will live in infamy?

 

Thursday, 8/27/15, Rhinelander, Wisconsin, USA
 
- Whew, another whirl-wind trip! -this one to the Investools Conference at the Hilton Convention Center in Anaheim, California. We didn't find out until Saturday (8/22) that thinkorswim/TDAmeritrade (AMTD*) needed us there on Sunday - yes, the very next day! So, it was quite an endeavor getting there on 12 hours notice - but we are glad we did. It was great meeting so many interesting traders, and the one-on-one connections are always appreciated on both sides. 
- Two-years ago (8/27/13) the SPUs (/ES) were trading at 1655; One year ago (8/27/14) they were trading in the 2000 range; they started the summer (5/27/15) near 2100, traded near 2075 two weeks ago; and down to about 1967 last Friday (8/21/15) - THEN the fun began! The late last week sell-off intensified early this week, and the dramatic move will be talked about for years! Not often in history do the indices drop like they did this week (1000 Dow points in a day?), but the SPUs have rallied from the Monday morning lows of 1831 and are currently up near 1955. Three weeks ago we said: "Volatility has been known to pick up in the next couple of months, and the SPUs were pretty whacky just yesterday - trading from 2066.50 to 2098, and everywhere in between..." Little did we know what our trip to Anaheim would bring! We understand that fills were slow-in-coming, but quotation and order latency problems arise in any major market melee. The brokerage firms can't display prices or return fills until they come from the exchanges, and the routing in both directions was understandably backlogged. Not to mention the bid/ask spreads were widened to ridiculous levels as even the most brilliant market maker or best computer program had trouble figuring option values. So the finger pointing in the press came mostly (as usual) from the uninformed folks that like to pour gasoline on every fire! We hope everyone survived the ordeal, please remember that we are always trying our best. But when the usual amount of customers trying to fit through the eye of the needle is multiplied by 100 - mostly right on the open - THERE WILL BE PROBLEMS! 
- Today's possible movers: DG, NVDA*, AAPL*, SJM, KSU, CSX, BAC*, GES, YOKU*, PBR*, LVS*, XOM*, GM*, F*. 
- Today's economic events:
GDP Q2
Initial Jobless Claims
Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index
Pending Home Sales
EIA Natural Gas Inventory
Kansas City Fed Mfg Survey
Results of $29B, 7-Year Note Auction
Money Supply
Fed Balance Sheet
 
"If a man harbors any sort of fear, it percolates through all his thinking, damages his personality, makes him landlord to a ghost." - Lloyd C. Douglas
 
Have a great weekend! 
 
- If you are looking for a fabulous full-day of stock/options/futures education, please sign up for one of the upcoming Market Drive Saturday events. The next show is in New York (9/26) - hope to see you there.  www.tdameritradeconferences.com/marketdrive -  And look for us in the daily Swim Lesson chat room 10:30 - noon CT. Like us on Facebook (FB*) -- https://www.facebook.com/frank.walsh.169, or follow us on Twitter (TWTR) at whatsfrankthink or on Linkedin (LNKD). 
 
FHW
(* = FHW position) 
fhwoption@hotmail.com 
What's Frank Thinking? | 8/27/2015 8:31:59 AM | 0 Comments
Monthly expiration Thursday.

 

Thursday, 8/20/15, Rhinelander, Wisconsin, USA
 
- Births: Benjamin Harrison (1833); H.P.Lovecraft (1890); Don King (1931); Robert Plant (1948). Deaths: Leon Trotsky (1940); Fred Hoyle (2001). On 8/20/1896 the dial telephone was invented, and in 1965, the Rolling Stones released their 1st US #1 hit - "Satisfaction."  Will we get any "satisfaction" on 8/20/15? 
- Two-years ago (8/20/13) the SPUs (/ES) were trading at 1645; One year ago (8/20/14) they were trading in the 1975 range; they started the summer (5/20/15) near 2020, traded near 2100 two weeks ago; about 2075 last week (8/13), traded overnight between 2053 and 2077, and are currently trading 2060. Still relatively rangebound, despite all the noise. As we have been saying all summer, the "no biggie" market is still holding true, and our Summer Avoidance Plan (SAP) is doing just fine. As we mentioned last week, Volatility has been known to pick up in the next couple of months, and the SPUs were pretty whacky just yesterday - trading from 2066.50 to 2098, and everywhere in between - quite a few times! We don't know if the trade was thin and "anxious" because of the nation's schools going back in-session and taking some traders away from their desk; China's continues weakness; or if it was the early "leak" of the Fed minutes that "spooked" the markets, but we felt like we were on a teeter-totter on steroids for much of the afternoon. So continue to dance with who brung ya - TRADE WHAT YOU KNOW AND KNOW WHAT YOU TRADE, and keep your hands inside the boat! Please remember, however, that footballs will soon be filling the air, which will be followed by the 2016 presidential election's uncertainty. The overall market will assuredly not be as overblown as many of the candidates and it might become as deflated as one of Tom Brady's footballs. So be careful out there! 
-US equities closed lower on Wednesday (8/19/15) as sliding oil prices, and global growth concerns, along with the Fed minutes screw-up brought out some sellers. (S&P 500 -0.83%, Dow -0.93%, NASDAQ -0.80%). Small-cap stocks also retreated: Russell 2000 (RUT -0.98%). The VIX spiked up 10.59% to 15.25, as there were some big SPX put trades. Crude-oil futures (/CLV5*) dropped 4.3% to $40.80 a barrel but rallied back over 41.15 overnight, and are currently trading just under 41. Gold futures (/GCZ5*) rose 1% to $1,128.10 an ounce, and are now trading up another $11 to 1139. US Treasuries were higher on Wednesday after minutes from the Federal Reserve’s last policy meeting indicated economic conditions required for a rate hike were “approaching”. The 30-year (/ZBU5*) yield fell to 2.81%, while the 10-year (/ZNU5) and 5-year (/ZFU5) yields dropped to 2.12% and 1.50% respectively. Does "approaching" mean September or the end of the decade? 
- Today's possible movers: ADI, LB, XOM*, BAC*, DAL*, ANN, ROST, F*, GM*, PBR*, CVX - with the SPUs getting beaten down in the early hours and oil lower, all of these stocks look to also open lower. Metals and miners might be higher however - NEM*, AUY*, AU, ABX.
- Today's economic events:
John Williams speaks (2:45am EST) - NOT the composer
Jobless Claims (8:30am EST)
Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index (9:45 EST)
Philadelphia Fed Business Outlook Survey (10:00am EST)
Existing Home Sales (10:00am EST)
Leading Indicators m/m (10:00am EST)
EIA Natural Gas Report (10:30am EST)
5-Year TIPS Auction (1:00pm EST)
Money Supply (4:30pm EST)
Fed Balance Sheet (4:30pm EST)
- Notable earnings before the open: ANN, LITB, OSIS, RAVN, SNOW, TTC; and after today's close: ARAY, BRCD, CRM, CRMT, GPS, HPQ, INTU, JBSS, MENT, MRVL*, MSON, NDSN, NWY, ROST, SCSC, SRNA, TFM, TUES, UEPS.
 
"Things are the way they are because they were the way they were." - Fred Hoyle
 
- If you are looking for a fabulous full-day of stock/options/futures education, please sign up for one of the upcoming Market Drive Saturday events. The next show is in New York (9/26) - hope to see you there.  
www.tdameritradeconferences.com/marketdrive -  And look for us in the daily Swim Lesson chat room 10:30 - noon CT. Like us on Facebook (FB*) -- https://www.facebook.com/frank.walsh.169, or follow us on Twitter (TWTR) at whatsfrankthink or on Linkedin (LNKD). 
 
FHW
(* = FHW position) 
fhwoption@hotmail.com 
What's Frank Thinking? | 8/20/2015 8:07:22 AM | 0 Comments
Monthly expiration Thursday.

 

Thursday, 8/20/15, Rhinelander, Wisconsin, USA
 
- Births: Benjamin Harrison (1833); H.P.Lovecraft (1890); Don King (1931); Robert Plant (1948). Deaths: Leon Trotsky (1940); Fred Hoyle (2001). On 8/20/1896 the dial telephone was invented, and in 1965, the Rolling Stones released their 1st US #1 hit - "Satisfaction."  Will we get any "satisfaction" on 8/20/15? 
- Two-years ago (8/20/13) the SPUs (/ES) were trading at 1645; One year ago (8/20/14) they were trading in the 1975 range; they started the summer (5/20/15) near 2020, traded near 2100 two weeks ago; about 2075 last week (8/13), traded overnight between 2053 and 2077, and are currently trading 2060. Still relatively rangebound, despite all the noise. As we have been saying all summer, the "no biggie" market is still holding true, and our Summer Avoidance Plan (SAP) is doing just fine. As we mentioned last week, Volatility has been known to pick up in the next couple of months, and the SPUs were pretty whacky just yesterday - trading from 2066.50 to 2098, and everywhere in between - quite a few times! We don't know if the trade was thin and "anxious" because of the nation's schools going back in-session and taking some traders away from their desk; China's continues weakness; or if it was the early "leak" of the Fed minutes that "spooked" the markets, but we felt like we were on a teeter-totter on steroids for much of the afternoon. So continue to dance with who brung ya - TRADE WHAT YOU KNOW AND KNOW WHAT YOU TRADE, and keep your hands inside the boat! Please remember, however, that footballs will soon be filling the air, which will be followed by the 2016 presidential election's uncertainty. The overall market will assuredly not be as overblown as many of the candidates and it might become as deflated as one of Tom Brady's footballs. So be careful out there! 
-US equities closed lower on Wednesday (8/19/15) as sliding oil prices, and global growth concerns, along with the Fed minutes screw-up brought out some sellers. (S&P 500 -0.83%, Dow -0.93%, NASDAQ -0.80%). Small-cap stocks also retreated: Russell 2000 (RUT -0.98%). The VIX spiked up 10.59% to 15.25, as there were some big SPX put trades. Crude-oil futures (/CLV5*) dropped 4.3% to $40.80 a barrel but rallied back over 41.15 overnight, and are currently trading just under 41. Gold futures (/GCZ5*) rose 1% to $1,128.10 an ounce, and are now trading up another $11 to 1139. US Treasuries were higher on Wednesday after minutes from the Federal Reserve’s last policy meeting indicated economic conditions required for a rate hike were “approaching”. The 30-year (/ZBU5*) yield fell to 2.81%, while the 10-year (/ZNU5) and 5-year (/ZFU5) yields dropped to 2.12% and 1.50% respectively. Does "approaching" mean September or the end of the decade? 
- Today's possible movers: ADI, LB, XOM*, BAC*, DAL*, ANN, ROST, F*, GM*, PBR*, CVX - with the SPUs getting beaten down in the early hours and oil lower, all of these stocks look to also open lower. Metals and miners might be higher however - NEM*, AUY*, AU, ABX.
- Today's economic events:
John Williams speaks (2:45am EST) - NOT the composer
Jobless Claims (8:30am EST)
Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index (9:45 EST)
Philadelphia Fed Business Outlook Survey (10:00am EST)
Existing Home Sales (10:00am EST)
Leading Indicators m/m (10:00am EST)
EIA Natural Gas Report (10:30am EST)
5-Year TIPS Auction (1:00pm EST)
Money Supply (4:30pm EST)
Fed Balance Sheet (4:30pm EST)
- Notable earnings before the open: ANN, LITB, OSIS, RAVN, SNOW, TTC; and after today's close: ARAY, BRCD, CRM, CRMT, GPS, HPQ, INTU, JBSS, MENT, MRVL*, MSON, NDSN, NWY, ROST, SCSC, SRNA, TFM, TUES, UEPS.
 
"Things are the way they are because they were the way they were." - Fred Hoyle
 
- If you are looking for a fabulous full-day of stock/options/futures education, please sign up for one of the upcoming Market Drive Saturday events. The next show is in New York (9/26) - hope to see you there.  
www.tdameritradeconferences.com/marketdrive -  And look for us in the daily Swim Lesson chat room 10:30 - noon CT. Like us on Facebook (FB*) -- https://www.facebook.com/frank.walsh.169, or follow us on Twitter (TWTR) at whatsfrankthink or on Linkedin (LNKD). 
 
FHW
(* = FHW position) 
fhwoption@hotmail.com 
What's Frank Thinking? | 8/20/2015 8:06:55 AM | 0 Comments
Millionaire cashier?

 

Wednesday, August 19th, 2015, Rhinelander, Wisconsin, USA 
 
A friend of our's who has always worked in the retail world, mostly at a cash register, will soon retire from Costco at the ripe-old-age of 52. Huh, you are now questioning the possibility of this actually happening? Well, our friend was from California, moved to Arizona and is now heading into retirement in the great Northwest, all after starting her retail career about 30 years ago at warehouse store known as Price Club. If you didn't know it, the original Price Club turned into what is now the second largest retailer in the United States -Costco Wholesale (COST). When we moved to Paradise Valley, Arizona, in 1990, our favorite store was the Price Club on Thomas Road and 44th Street, replacing our favorite northside of Chicago Price Club store. It was at the AZ store that we met our check-out friend who we remember telling after the Costco/Price Club 1993 merger to "own" all the PriceCostco stock she could. Obviously she heeded our words.  
 
A 1% dividend doesn't sound like much, but when you have been amassing stock for over 20 years and trading options against your growing long stock position, the value of the account makes you a multi-millionaire gal that will soon snap her last Costco ID photo. We haven't had a COST position, or anything retail in a long time (other than Nike NKE*, Walmart WMT* and LuLu Lemon LULU*), and are currently waiting for some pull backs in the likes of COST or higher end KORS, LUX or JWN. Not being a big shopper, positions in some of these mostly brick and mortar stores, are generally entered after a family spending spree. Nordstrom's Rack was just visited in Chicago and it was very busy, and when you consider some of the retail alternatives, from either a shopping or an investing perspective, Nordstrom's or their Rack stores look pretty good. 
 
If you really want to talk high end brick & mortar, you have to be talking Neiman Marcus, but that outfit founded by Dallas, Texas' Neiman family, is privately held. KORS has more options play, but we aren't into purses and there is no dividend. LUX, on the other hand, may not have much options play, but it does pay a dividend and makes our favorite Oakley sunglasses. Gosh, do we cut back on NKE after it's incredible five-year "run" from $35 to $115, and delve into luxury goods which might hold up better if the economy falters? COST has gone from about 50 to almost 160 in that same time frame, it pays a small dividend, but the open interest and bid/ask aren't nearly as "tasty" as their prime meats or thick-cut pork chops. Actually, seeing how the highest end store in Rhinelander is named "Revive", selling handed down high end goods; is obviously not publicly traded and is owned by a pal of ours (sorry Scott), there is no Northwoods high end retail investment possibility. So, we may have to wait for a pullback and/or our return to Arizona, where there are malls-upon-malls of fancy/expensive stores where we might eventually invest (shop?). 
 
Our Costco friend has once again proven that time is possibly the key to investing; yes, we can, and sometimes should, wait a long time for an investment. In fact we can wait a lot longer than certain family members can for that new watch or purse! 
 
"Beware the fury of a patient man." -- John Dryden
 
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.
The list of upcoming Market Drive events is now on the TDAmeritrade web-site - go to www.tdameritradeconferences.com/marketdrive, login and sign up. Hope to see you in New York in September. 
 
FHW 
(* = FHW position)
fhwoption@hotmail.com
What's Frank Thinking? | 8/19/2015 7:33:24 AM | 0 Comments
Tuesday Tidbits 8/18/15

 

Tuesday, 8/18/15, Kohler, Wisconsin, USA 
 
- Births: Marshall Field (1834); Max Factor (1904); Roberto Clemente (1934); Robert Redford (1937). Deaths: Genghis Khan (1227). It was on this day, in 1894, that the US Congresscreated the Bureau of Immigration, and in 1958, "Lolita", by Vladamir Nabokov was published. The construction of the Berlin Wall was completed on 8/18/1961, and a year later Peter, Paul and Mary released "If I Had a Hammer." In 1982 the volume on the NYSE surpassed 100 million shares for the 1st time and Pete Rose set a record with his 13,941st at bat. 
- US equities rallied Monday (8/17/15) after being lower most of the morning (S&P 500 +0.52%, Dow +0.39%, NASDAQ +0.86%). UnitedHealth Group (UNH +2.31%) and Disney (DIS +1.76%) led the major indices. Tesla (TSLA) rose almost 5% as Morgan Stanley upped their price target. Small-caps also advanced: Russell 2000 (RUT +1.02%). The VIX climbed 1.48% to 13.02. Crude-oil futures (/CLU5) fell to a 6-year low, down 1.5% to $41.87 a barrel, the default contract has flipped on the thinkorswim (AMTD*) platform to the October cycle (V), which are currently trading down .01 to 42.40. Gold futures (/GCZ5) rose 0.5% to $1,118.60 an ounce and are trading close to the 1116 level this morning. US Treasuries rose on Monday. The 30-year Treasury (/ZBU5*) yield fell to 2.82%, and the 10-year (/ZNU5) and 5-year (/ZFU5) yields dropped to 2.17% and 1.57% respectively. The grains have been relatively flat with corn (/ZCZ5) clinging to the 375 level for the last week.
- Today's possible up or down movers: SNDK, WMT, ESPR, SINA*, SUNE*, YOKU*, AAPL*, FB*, SLV*, MSFT*, BAC*, PBR*, LVS*, EMES*. 
- Today's economic events:
Housing Starts
Redbook Chain Store Sales 
- Notable earnings before the opening: HMY, MBT, EROS, CSIQ, MY, SYPR, TJX; and after today's close: ADI, DL, DV, LZB, PLAB, SINA*, TEDU, WB.
 
"Things to remember: 
1) The worth of character; 
2) The improvement of talent; 
3) The influence of example; 
4) The joy of origination; 
5) The dignity of simplicity; 
6) The success of perseverance." -- Marshall Field
  
- Like us on Facebook (FB*) -- https://www.facebook.com/frank.walsh.169 or follow on Twitter(TWTR) at whatsfrankthink, or on Linkedin (LNKD). Remember to sign into the daily live Swim Lesson - found up on the Support/Chat tab, running between 10:30 - noon CT. The list of upcoming Market Drive events is now on the TDAmeritrade web-site - with the next 
 
FHW
(* = FHW position)
fhwoption@hotmail.com 
What's Frank Thinking? | 8/18/2015 8:47:08 AM | 0 Comments
12 years later - same stuff!

 

Monday, August 17, 2015, Rhinelander, Wisconsin, USA
 
Some things never change, and to prove that, here is a reprint of an article we wrote in 2003! 
 
"It may have come from a prior life, a lemonade stand in our youth, or our 20 years of trading floor experience on both the market maker and floor brokerage side, but for some reason we have always been predisposed to selling 'juice' (options premium). 
Granted, it is a much tougher task when the volatility levels remain stuck in a relatively low range, but there are still opportunities - especially when looking further out in time. In fact, we remember in the late 1970s while acting as an independent market maker on the CBOE, and with the volatility even lower than it is now, selling premium in several equities - even if only when the stock prices were affected by some dramatic news story - i.e. the JNJ Tylenol scare or the shooting of the Pope. 
As we noticed at the most recent Las Vegas Rat Trading Session, the short-term premiums may be low, but they hang-in-there for what seems like an eternity - oftentimes much to our chagrin! In looking at our current short positions, with several of the underlyings within cents of our middle stike area, the values of the middle straddles or stangles have remained relatively constant over the last week, and should only begin to lose premium at some point this week, and then only if the price of the underlying stays flat.
Similar to a simple butterfly spread, the values of these positions will usually remain elevated until very close to expiration, as the time decay of any of the near-the-money options doesn't add up until at least the last 10-days prior to the end of the cycle. It is actually easier, and possible in earlier time frames to close out these multi-sided trades when the volatility levels are higher. This is why, with volatility so low, that we usually don't even think of closing out these positions unless we are in (at the earliest) the last two-weeks of the expiration cycle. 
There are other factors in the close/adjust decision, and one of the most relevant elements is, of course, the existing price of the overall position. By this we mean that if the position has reached our pre-determined parameter for an adjustment or close - regardless of the time remaining, it will be acted on - at least in some partial form. If short both sides for instance, and the underlying has moved enough to make a partial close on one of the sides possible - that might be done as a closing leg, then on any reversal, the other side can be acted on in a similar fashion - to 'bring-in' the leg."
 
So, although twelve-years have passed since this article (now called a blog) was written, the same exact positions are still being entered, adjusted and closed in the same manner. The major differences that we see today are all of the new products and the remarkable changes in the overall options world. From dollar wide strikes and penny wide bid/ask spreads, to weeklies and ETFs and instant electronic fills of almost any imaginable position, the benefits to the retail online customer in today's marketplace are enormous. We wonder if the same will be said in another 12 years?
 
"Time is on your side - unless it ain't" -- GUR (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.
The list of upcoming Market Drive events is now on the TDAmeritrade web-site - go to www.tdameritradeconferences.com/marketdrive, login and sign up. Hope to see you in NY in September. 
 
FHW 
(* = FHW position)
fhwoption@hotmail.com
What's Frank Thinking? | 8/17/2015 7:28:05 AM | 0 Comments