No sooner had Merkel and Sarkozy put the finishing touches on the latest bailout rumors than Standard & Poor’s was threatening to downgrade the debt of 15 of the 17 euroland nations. Recall that as the week began, France and Germany were talking up the latest supposed solution to the debt crisis. Bigger and better than their last supposed solution, it drew a rave from that man of discernment and cunning, Tim Geithner, who pulled out all the stops in making much ado about nothing. “The eyes of the world are very much on Europe now,” he told reporters in Berlin. “[We should be] very encouraged by developments in Europe in the past two weeks, including reform commitments in Italy, Spain and Greece.” » Read the full article
Early Wednesday morning, March Silver was stealing up on a bullish threshold whose breach could portend more upside over the near term to as high as 34.270. Check out the chart that accompanies today’s tout, since it offers a compelling picture as well as some useful price points for camouflage.
All of the gurgly action of the last few days has taken place just beneath the external peak at 1270.75 recorded on November 14. That makes the monster rally from 1147 suspect, since, having exceeded no prior peaks, it is not even impulsive on the daily chart. A minor upthrust from these levels would remedy that, but until such time as one occurs, and even in the wake of the recent 120-point explosion, the burden of proof properly rests with the bulls.
Subscribers are working two bullish calendar spreads (x16), but I would suggest increasing the size of the position if TLT corrects down to the 115.18 target shown. For now , we are long September 20 118 calls against short August 19 118 calls that we will roll into August 29 calls this Thursday and Friday. We’ve already done the roll twice, reducing the cost basis of the spread to 0.04. This week’s roll will entail covering (buying back) the short calls and shorting a like number of August 29 calls, effectively selling the August 22 118/August 29 118 calendar spread.
It was marked on Tuesday at 0.17, off a 0.26 offer, but any price higher than 0.04 will effectively turn the position we’ll have – long the Sept 20 118/August 29 118 calendar — into a credit spread. This means we can’t lose – will make a profit no matter what TLT does. Ideally, come September 20 , TLT will be sitting at 118, our spread will be trading for around 0.50, and we’ll be carrying it for a credit of perhaps 0.50. The imputed profit would be $1600 — not bad, considering our risk is already close to zero.
My long-term outlook for T-Bonds is very bullish, a view that goes sharply against a consensus which clings to the belief that interest rates – and the stock market — can only go up. That is a bet we should be eager to fade. We may have a chance to do so at still better odds if T-Bonds continue to sell off on the manufactured idea that the Jackson Hole conference will open the floodgates for more stimulus and inflation. _______ UPDATE (10:38 a.m.): The Sep 20/Aug xx calendar spread is recommended at this point only for those who did the original spread, since there’s not enough time left on it to roll its cost basis down to zero or less (i.e., a credit). If you are new to the spread, try buying the Nov 20/August 29 calendar for 0.90 with TLT trading around 115.80. The spread has a delta value of 0.20, implying that being long one spread is equivalent to being long 20 shares of stock. This means that, using a spread price of 0.90 as a benchmark, you should adjust the price you pay for it by one penny, up or down, for each 5 cents that TLT moves away from 115.80.