November 27th, 2014
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Weekly Commentary

With $1000 Looming, Gold Fever Is Back

by Rick Ackerman on September 4, 2009 2:15 am GMT · 5 comments

We’re no fans of head-and-shoulder formations, since they are everywhere the amateur chartist might want to find them. But there is something to be said for the bullish reverse head-and-shoulders pattern that gold futures have been tracing out for the last year-and-a-half. The pattern is shown in the chart below, and it is predicting that December Gold, which settled yesterday at 997.70, its highest close since February, is about to run up to $1060. Trouble is, just about everyone we know thinks gold is about to pop to 1060, give or » Read the full article


TODAY'S ACTION for Friday

Too Sexy to Pass Up

by Rick Ackerman on September 4, 2009 3:06 am GMT

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Rick's Picks for Friday
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All Picks By Issue:

SLW – Silver Wheaton (Last:13.04)

by Rick Ackerman on September 4, 2009 2:30 am GMT

All our ducks are in line now that we’ve successfully legged into the December 12.50-15.00 call spread eight times for a net CREDIT of 0.15 per.  The short sale of some December 15 calls for 0.45 yesterday morning clinched it, allowing us to capture premium in this series when the options were fat and juicy. Let’s put in a stink bid of 0.20 to cover the December 15s, good through Wednesday. It would be worth our while to get ’em in at that price if we can do so within the next few days. Our goal would then be to re-short them on  rally. _______ UPDATEWe weren’t able to cover the short December 15 calls, since they never traded below 0.35.  However, with the stock pushing toward $13 our position is looking better than ever.  We have a chance to make as much as $2120 with SLW trading $15 or higher at expiration, but even if SLW plummets we’ll still make at least $120.

DIA – Diamonds (Last:94.46)

by Rick Ackerman on September 4, 2009 2:49 am GMT

I usually ignore hot tips, but a pen-pal of mine, Phil C., sent me a breathless note predicting that the Dow would rally 100-150 points this morning, forming a top from which it will collapse when traders return after Labor Day.  Putting aside the details, this sounds so absolutely right to me that I’m inclined to speculate modestly.  Mr Market loves to spring dirty, nasty surprises whenever possible, and what could be nastier — or more surprising — than a tsunami to greet us as we return from summer’s final fling?  To get short, we can use the midpoint resistance at 95.07 shown in the chart, buying two September 93 puts (DAVUO) if and when the Diamonds get there. _______ UPDATE (11:52 a.m.): Stocks are only modestly higher today after an other-then-depressing unemployment report, so a short-squeeze to the levels where we’d wanted to get short seems unlikely. We’ll do nothing officially, but personally I’m going to take a couple of puts home with me over the weekend. My hunch is that the best prices of the day will obtain near the close. (Note: I bought some September 93 puts — DAVUO — for 0.86.)

SIZ09 – Comex December Silver (Last:16.130)

by Rick Ackerman on September 4, 2009 3:13 am GMT

The futures pushed slightly above a 16.265 pivot that had served as a short-term, minimum upside objective. The overshoot hints of further upside progress, presumably to the next Hidden Pivot resistance worth noting, 16.640.

$DXY – NYBOT Dollar Index (Last:87.85)

by Rick Ackerman on November 26, 2014 3:40 am GMT

I remain very bullish on the dollar and expect it to achieve the 90.00 target shown by early 2015. However, it is clearly winded after the steep run-up since July, resulting in more frequent consolidations to develop thrust for each successive new high. Another factor contributing to the rally’s timidity of late is the implied resistance of two key peaks made, respectively, at 88.71 (June 2010) and 89.62 (March 2009).  A true bull-market breakout will require a push past these peaks, and although that outcome seems likely, it could take a while. However, if DXY were to effortlessly power past the peaks within the next 4-6 weeks, it would imply there’s still enormous power in reserve to drive the bull market significantly higher.

$AAPL – Apple Computer (Last:118.63)

by Rick Ackerman on November 25, 2014 4:10 am GMT

AAPL has been on a rampage since April, gaining hundreds of billions of dollars in valuation with a run-up of more than 60%.  How long can a stock that is already the most valuable in the world continue to rise vertically?  Probably not forever, it can be safely inferred. It’s not as though Apple has no competitors. Indeed, the day is probably not far off when Chinese manufacturers are churning out smart phones that will do just about everything an iPhone can do, but for one tenth the price. Samsung is having troubles of its own coping with brutal competition in mobile devices — but then again, the company does not enjoy Apple’s cult status, nor the kind of caché among customers that has inspired some of them to have the Apple logo tattooed on their butts.

From a technical standpoint the stock is closing on a very compelling target at 125.87 that comes from the weekly chart (see inset). I expect this Hidden Pivot to show stopping power that will be compounded by the 126.87 target of a lesser rally pattern that is clearly discernible on the hourly chart. The implied $7+ rally is reason enough to try to get long here if you are not already on board. However, it is also reason to take profits, do covered writes against stock held in a portfolio; or more aggressively, to reverse long positions and get short. In any case, I’ll use the 126.37 midpoint of the targeted range as my minimum upside objective for the near term, to serve you in any way that suits your goals.

$JYZ14 – December 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.

$ESZ14 – December E-Mini S&P (Last:2070.00)

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.

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:177.80)

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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This Just In... for Friday

About My Option Strategies…

by Rick Ackerman on September 4, 2009 12:01 am GMT

The following questions about my option strategies came up in the forum, but I am republishing them here because they may be of interest to a wider audience:

What is the advantage of going long one call, and then locking in a given spread via shorting another call, versus “locking-in” the spread by going long on puts instead?

My answer below is more generalized, but to address your specific point, we should prefer to “lock in” a profit by shorting a wasting asset rather than buying one ourselves.  For most option traders most of the time, shorting calls is MUCH more profitable than buying puts.  Indeed, in the several decades I have been trading options,  I cannot recall a instance when put buyers were happy for more than three consecutive days.  Even those who owned puts ahead of the 1987 crash had just two days of sheer bliss to get rid of them.

Is it that in the latter scenario, one is long twice, and can thus get screwed twice by the pros? I always thought the latter scenario would be a good one in cases of low implied volatility, where the loss on one is mitigated, and the gain in the other is increased when implied volatility rises during larger underlying moves. (That may just be retail-customer theory, which the pros have long beaten. But what do I know? I’m still waiting for someone to start offering straight options on the VIX. Thanks!

&&&&&

The spreads I prefer are intended to provide a highly leveraged shot at big profits, but without the usual, horrendous time decay. This tactic is especially useful if we expect a stock to rise (or fall) over a period of several months. We also seek to take advantage of fleeting spikes that goose option volatilities to the moon. If, for instance, SLW opens on a gap this morning (it did), we may have a chance to short Dec 15 calls when they are hugely overvalued — sell them, perhaps, for even more than the 0.45 we’d intended. (They topped at 0.50 before receding with the tide.). And, of course, we do so with the expectation that Silver Wheaton will be strong in the coming months, but not so strong that the December 15 calls will go in-the-money. We may ultimately decide to exercise our December 12.50s, a step in building a long-term position. RA

The Real Unemployment Rate

by Rick Ackerman on September 4, 2009 4:38 am GMT

Were you aware that the Bureau of Labor calculates unemployment in various and sundry ways that are not shared with the press?  Neither were we — until we heard about ‘U-6,” which reckoned U.S. joblessness at 14.8 percent back in February.  We would assume it’s much higher now, but unfortunately February was the last month given.  Incidentally, if 1933’s rate of 24.7 percent had been calculated using today’s dubious metrics, it supposedly would have been lower by at least five to ten percentage points. Click here  for the link.


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