November 24th, 2014
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Weekly Commentary

Bank Scare a Ruse to Shake the Tree

by Rick Ackerman on September 2, 2009 12:22 am GMT · 6 comments

A run on a major U.S. bank?  Who could have been spreading such scurrilous rumors? They surfaced yesterday in the Rick’s Picks chat room, and elsewhere, not long after we’d done some personal banking ourselves in an online account at the very same bank. We experienced no delays or problems with the transaction, notwithstanding reports of a “default situation” and “elevated” buying of put options on the shares of the bank.  We were able to confirm that there had indeed been a flurry of put-buying, but the action was not so frenetic as to suggest that the bank was in any serious trouble. 

bankers

To the contrary, banks are operating under such loosey-goosey rules right now that they shouldn’t have a care in the world. Imagine having a notarized letter from your local police chief authorizing you to loot and plunder any store in the neighborhood without fear of arrest. That’s how the banks are doing business these days – which is to say, however they want.  And if a deal should turn sour it’s no problem, since the U.S. government has assured banks that it will pay 100 cents on the dollar for any securities that ultimately fail to clear the market.

Smoldering Ruins

Tuesday’s rumors of a big bank on the ropes evidently were prompted by general weakness in banking shares. The selling had been attributed to nervousness over the prospect of more losses to come in the banking sector. A few analysts added to the stresses of the day by speaking cautiously about bank shares.  Has the spectacular rally begun last November finally run out of steam, they asked? We seriously doubt it. More likely is that those who have been accumulating bank shares hand-over-fist simply backed off their bids for a day, allowing the stocks to fall to more appealing levels.

Bloomberg, CNBC, the Wall Street Journal and all the rest bought into this ruse with a deluge of commentary concerning how financial stocks supposedly have gotten too far ahead of “fundamentals”. Fundamentals!?  If the day ever comes when fundamental analysis is applied rigorously to securities markets, the financial system will be reduced to a smoldering ruin in mere days. For the time being, though, the bankers are enjoying a holiday from scrutiny that makes all things possible. Under the circumstances, with Tammany Hall sensibilities determining the course of the financial system, we should not be looking for a top in banking shares, only an occasional pause in their upward spiral.

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TODAY'S ACTION for Wednesday

Against the Grain…

by Rick Ackerman on September 2, 2009 1:18 am GMT

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Rick's Picks for Wednesday
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GCZ09 – Comex December Gold (Last:955.00)

by Rick Ackerman on September 2, 2009 12:44 am GMT

The futures spent the day struggling to go lower, failing in the end to overpower a midpoint support at 947.60 whose breach would have greased the skids down to 938.70. The bearish pattern is shown in the accompanying chart, and as you can see, the pre-dawn bounce came from a low that lay within a single tick of the pattern’s calculated midpoint. The reactive rally was no world-beater, to be sure, but on balance the picture is at least mildly bullish for the near term.  A 978.00 rally target given here earlier remains viable, but like you I am growing a bit impatient about it.

GS – Goldman Sachs (Last:162.03)

by Rick Ackerman on September 2, 2009 12:53 am GMT

Yesterday’s savaging did no damage whatsoever to the bullishness of the daily chart, although there is still room to fall on the lesser intraday charts. Specifically, a Hidden Pivot target at 158.90 looks like a good place to try bottom-fishing. Officially we’ll bid 158.93 for 200 shares, stop 158.79.  We continue to hold the Jan 130 – Oct 130 put spread four times for 3.40 and a September 170 call for 2.00. _______ UPDATE: The bottom-fishing gambit worked out nicely, since the stock rallied $1.08 after making a low at 158.90 around midway into the session. You would have needed to apply a trailing stop, though, since Goldman subsequently relapsed to 158.14 before the closing bell.

SIU09 – Comex December Silver (Last:14.970)

by Rick Ackerman on September 2, 2009 1:01 am GMT

Silver effected a promising spike yesterday afternoon, but the futures were struggling to hold onto the gain early in the evening.  If they go no lower than 14.940 overnight, however, any rally exceeding the relevant midpoint resistance at 15.155 would suggest additional upside potential over the near term to as high as 15.365.

DXY – NYBOT Dollar Index (Last:78.80)

by Rick Ackerman on September 2, 2009 1:12 am GMT

The rally looked altogether unimpressive until late in the session, when a fleeting spike surpassed a look-to-the-left peak at 78.91 that I’d flagged in the chat room. That gives the rally nominal appeal on the lesser charts, although we should require 79.79 today to validate it. The location of the obscure but important peak-let this would surpass is shown in the accompanying chart.

$JYM13 – June Yen (Last:0.8481)

by Rick Ackerman on November 24, 2014 8:00 am GMT

The chart shown has implications that may or may not prevent Japan from getting sucked into a deflationary black hole. However, the chart is quite clear on the question of whether BOJ will be successful in its longstanding goal of trashing the yen. (Answer: Yes, very.) The small rally in early October from around 0.9001 validates the pattern itself, and the decisive progress beneath that level since implies that the D target at 0.7332 is likely to be reached. This will obviously benefit Japanese exporters, but it will also put more pressure on manufacturers in the U.S. and elsewhere that compete with them. Traders should position from the short side until the target is reached, but be alert for a rally back up to the red line, since that would set up a ‘mechanical’ short to the target using a 0.9418 stop-loss. That’s far more than we would ordinarily risk, but you could cut it down to size by using the ‘camouflage’ technique. When appropriate, ask in the chat room if you’re uncertain about how to do this.

$GCZ14 – December Gold (Last:1196.80)

by Rick Ackerman on November 24, 2014 7:27 am GMT

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$ESZ14 – December E-Mini S&P (Last:2062.00)

by Rick Ackerman on November 24, 2014 7:09 am GMT

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$GDXJ – Junior Gold Miner ETF (Last:28.81)

by Rick Ackerman on November 20, 2014 6:17 am GMT

GDXJ’s ups and downs are in ‘dueling’ mode at the moment, alternating between bullish and bearish feints. It was mildly bullish when the stock slightly exceeded the 129.30 target shown on Tuesday. However, yesterday’s slide also exceeded a Hidden Pivot target — in this case a hidden support at 27.21.  Taken together, the action suggests that this vehicle will spend the next few days marking time in the range 28-29. The picture would brighten on a thrust exceeding 29.20 on Thursday, since that would imply more upside to at least 31.24. Alternatively, a continuation of the downtrend past 25.67 would have equally bearish implications. ______ UPDATE (November 24, 1:54 a.m. EST): GDXJ finally budged by moving above 29.28, albeit a day later than we might have preferred.  Now, if the rally holds above Friday’s 28.42 low, a modest target at 30.43 will be in play — would become an odds-on bet if and when this vehicle pushes decisively above the 29.43 midpoint resistance.

$DJIA – Dow Industrial Average (Last:17686)

by Rick Ackerman on November 20, 2014 3:47 am GMT

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USZ14 – December T-Bonds (Last:141^22)

by Rick Ackerman on November 17, 2014 12:06 am GMT

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$+DIA – Dow Industrials ETF (Last:177.60)

by Rick Ackerman on November 12, 2014 4:20 am GMT

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$IDAH – Idaho North Resources (Last:0.1600)

by Rick Ackerman on November 5, 2014 12:01 am GMT

Idaho North [OTC symbol: IDAH] offers investors a potentially lucrative synergy between two very successful entrepreneurs.  CEO Mark Fralich started out as a reporter with the Associated Press News Service but went on to co-found Spoval Fiber Optics before moving into the exploration business with Mines Management, Consolidated Goldfields Corp. and some other natural resource companies. Like most executives in the exploration business, he is an aggressive risk-taker. But he is also an astute bettor, perhaps never moreso than in his choice of Thomas Callicrate to head up his technical team.

Callicrate is bottled lightning, a geologist who may know more about ore deposits in Nevada than anyone else in the world. I counted no fewer than 250 file cabinets in the barn-size work buildings that surround Callicrate’s spectacular home in Carson City. He seems to have committed every geological map in those cabinets to memory, and he can tell you exactly where each and every rock came from in the massive stone fireplace that dominates his living room and in his beautifully landscaped gardens.  The fact that he chose to affiliate with IDAH attests to his confidence in Fralich’s ability to exploit to-the-max whatever ore deposits the company is able to find.

From a technical standpoint, the company’s shares have not traded for long enough to offer a sound basis for prediction. The stock has fluctuated between 0.08 and 0.24 since being OTC-listed in November 2013. That said, it would be no worse than an even bet to hit 0.3000 a share, nearly double its current price, if it can push past the red line at 0.2150. That’s a Hidden Pivot midpoint resistance, and it will remain valid as a minimum upside target for the near term unless the stock falls below 0.1300 first.

For news concerning two separate option agreements that IDAH recently signed, click here for the Green Monster property in Nye County, and here for Coeur Mining’s Klondyke properties.

$+SNIPF – Snipp Interactive (Last:0.3310)

by Rick Ackerman on October 28, 2014 2:47 am GMT

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SIDE BETS for Wednesday

ESU09 – September E-Mini S&P (Last: 996.00)

by Rick Ackerman on September 2, 2009 12:57 am GMT

Below 999.75, there were no more Hidden Pivot targets to project yesterday using the hourly chart. That is still the case, although we can use the breach of a look-to-the-left peak at 1009.50 to signal us when ES is turning around.


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