Rick’s Picks

GDXJ – Junior Gold Miner ETF (Last:35.91)

– Posted in: Current Touts Rick's Picks

Friday's explosive rally ended GDXJ's doldrums decisively, all but guaranteeing more upside in the days ahead to the 39.52 Hidden Pivot target shown. It followed an opportune dip to the green line that supported a 'mechanical' buy if you were nimble enough to catch the low, which exceeded x by a microscopic three cents. Any additional one-level swoons, however unlikely, can be used to bottom-fish with a tight stop-loss appropriate to your entry method. As always, a decisive push past a 'D' resistance would be telegraphing the continuation of the uptrend. _______ UPDATE (Mar 20, 8:23 p.m. EDT): This pattern tripped a profitable 'mechanical' buy today on the pullback to the green line. It projects to 38.04, a possible resting spot enroute to 39.52. _______ UPDATE (Mar 21, 5:12 p.m.): A wrenching fall from p2 may have made the day unpleasant, but seen in the perspective of this hourly chart, the damage was not too bad.  If the swoon continues to x=34.07, it would trigger an opportune 'mechanical' buy. A red-line buy at 35.89, stop 34.68, is also possible, but I am not recommending it explicitly.

$GCJ23 – April Gold (Last:1972.10)

– Posted in: Current Touts Free Rick's Picks

Buyers blew past the 1964.50 D target of a minor pattern with such ease on Friday that they all but clinched a further run-up to the 2036.40 target of the larger pattern shown (see inset). The psychologically important $2000 barrier is unlikely to provide much resistance as the new week begins, although it could act as support on a pullback. The move has been so steep that it has offered few opportunities to get aboard 'mechanically, even on the lesser charts. Gold should start turning up in the headlines once it is trading comfortably above 2000, and that could be a problem for spinmeisters who would deign to suggest that all is right with the world. _______ UPDATE (Mar 20, 8:45 p.m.): Apparent distribution over the last two days has created a minor but potentially controlling head-and-shoulders pattern with the potential to send the futures down to 1930 or so in search of traction. _______ UPDATE (Mar 22, 9:11 p.m.): Today's nutty, Fed-induced rally spilled into gold, driving the April contract into a parabola that negated the bearish head-and-shoulders pattern mentioned above. The new pattern project to 2034.20, with midpoint resistances, still untested. at 1985.40. Here's the chart.

SIK23 – May Silver (Last:23.57)

– Posted in: Current Touts Rick's Picks

I've brought point 'A' down to a 'marquee' low in order to give the rally a little more room. Silver's week-long hesitation to push past p=21.92 made it less than a lock-up to reach D=23.89, but Friday's blast free of gravity was sufficiently compelling to imply the target will be reached. As always, an overshoot of so clear a Hidden Pivot would imply more uptrend. Next would come a test of massive supply in the 23.50-25.00 range deposited back in December/January. _______ UPDATE (Mar 24, 8:55 a.m.): With a so-far high today of 23.71, the futures are closing on the 23.89 target that would max out the bullish reverse pattern shown in the thumbnail chart. They were short-able this morning as scalp at 23.69, however -- the 'D' target associated with the one-off low at 21.19 on 11/8. IF SI closes above the higher target, it would activate D=26.48, associated with A=18.40 on 10/14.

$TLT – Lehman Bond ETF (Last:106.85)

– Posted in: Current Touts Free Rick's Picks

TLT had a busy week clearing the way for a strong push to D=115.32. It started with a fist-pump past the midpoint 'hidden' resistance at 107.10. The breach was sufficient to suggest the target is about 75% likely to be achieved. The picture of strength brightened still more when the pullback from Monday's upthrust failed to set up a 'mechanical' buy at the green line. Having fewer bulls aboard, and therefore less profit-taking, will always steepen the trajectory of a rally. For now, use p2=111.21 as a minimum upside projection for the near term. _______ UPDATE (Mar 25): No change.

ESM23 – Jun E-Mini S&P (Last:3976)

– Posted in: Current Touts Free Rick's Picks

On a long-term chart, the exceptionally clean reverse pattern shown reveals some mildly disturbing signs that we hadn't detected before. First there was the dip beneath the pattern's D target at 3584.75. The 80-point overshoot amounts to 2.2%, and although that may not seem like much, for a pattern this crisp, any breach exceeding even 1% should be viewed as moderately bearish. The stall on the rebound at p=4196 is not quite as compelling because the Hidden Pivot levels were already spent. However, the bounce from D appears to have lacked guts because it died well shy of the 'external' peak just to the left. All of these factors together do not necessarily spell collapse, but they argue for trading the S&Ps with a bearish bias. Here's a weekly chart of the June contract that projects to as low as 3425.75 if sellers take out p=3834.88 decisively. The futures were a spec buy when they nearly touched the red line, but because the low missed it by five points, a run-up to the green line would not trigger a 'mechanical' short under a strict interpretation of our rules. I've offered a bigger picture than usual because smaller ones show an impacted mess that is best traded on sub-hourly charts. _______ UPDATE (Mar 22, 9:00 p.m. EDT): This afternoon's universally expected outbreak of mental illness produced no significant changes in the technical picture. A Mexican standoff began on Feb 13 when the futures reversed from p=3824 of this presumptive bear-market pattern. This was a logical place for a trend, even a major one, to end, but we will continue to bide our time trading the swings until a clearer signal comes. Bears may be feeling burned out by now, but that is no reason for them to think the bear rally

CLK23 – May Crude (Last:67.52)

– Posted in: Current Touts Free Rick's Picks

Just a little more selling would have brought May Crude down to a back-up-the-truck low at 64.25 where we would all have become bulls. Alas, the futures ran out the clock last week pussyfooting with lows just above this Hidden Pivot support, leaving a cloud of uncertainty hanging over the world's most valuable commodity as the new week begins. There is obviously a lot of bottom-fishing going on, so we should expect some more stop-outs beneath prior lows before crude gets traction. Another possibility, less likely, would be a gap-up opening on Sunday that leaves bulls choking on dust. _______ UPDATE (Mar 20, 9:14 p.m.): The futures rallied nearly $4 from a 64.36 low that missed my target by 11 cents. This happened at 5:00 a.m., however, an inconvenient time for U.S.-based traders. Only one subscriber mentioned it, so I have not established a tracking position. Here's the chart.

AAPL – Apple Computer (Last:158.89)

– Posted in: Current Touts Rick's Picks

AAPL has taken many a fall from these level since September, and so a breakout above the 158.74 peak circled in the chart would generate a strong impulse leg. Some will also see a bullish, inverted H&S pattern, which in this case is compelling enough to overcome my usual skepticism toward such formations. Immediate upside potential on a breakout would be to the 161.07 D target of this pattern, or 163.58 if any higher. That last number is derived from a lower 'A' at 138.81 recorded on Jan 25. _____ UPDATE (Mar 23, 4:32 p.m.): Today's wild swings effectively fulfilled the 162.47 rally target shown.  The target is a correction of one at 163.58 given here earlier that was based on an erroneous coordinate.  I doubt that AAPL's handlers are done short-squeezing the stock skyward vaporous volume, but they definitely hit real supply at the Hidden Pivot that will require some rest. Use a 167.42 target for the next big upthrust. It was calculated by simply sliding 'A' down to Jan 19's 133.77 low.

To Pivot, or Not to Pivot, That Is the Question

– Posted in: Free Rick's Picks The Morning Line

To pivot, or not to pivot? That is the question Fed Chairman Powell will have pondered over the weekend while tending chicken breasts, franks and burgers spaced meticulously on the grating of a 148,000 BTU grill. If conscience doth indeed make cowards of us all, we might expect him to act boldly. But how? Does he risk gutting the American Dream for a generation or longer by staying the course? Recall that his last utterance, on March 7, implied not merely that credit tightening would continue, but that it would accelerate. The stock market reacted like a concertgoer sitting in the middle of a row who has just felt the first gurgle of food poisoning in his bowels. Sellers panicked with spasms that quickened as the week wore on, and it was fully five days before fears appeared to recede. Investors opened their air locks last Monday and cautiously drew a lungful of what they hoped would be oxygen. It was, with just enough helium to make the broad averages frolicsome at times, if not quite giddy. One could almost forget that the U.S. economy is in shambles as some of the biggest multinational companies continue to scale back growth and axe workers by the tens of thousands. Biden’s tax proposal threatened to beggar what remains of America’s middle class; the nation’s military preparedness was being exported to Ukraine; and our three worst enemies -- China, Russia and Iran -- were making nice to each other.  Although GDP growth was officially reported most recently at around 3%, pundits were unofficially speaking of recession as though it were an entrenched reality, not merely a threat. The Haymaker If the picture were not already grim enough, the haymaker came last weekend with the failure of two large banks that cater to tech

BRTI – CME Bitcoin Index (Last:27,868)

– Posted in: Current Touts Free Rick's Picks

DaBoyz are taking no prisoners in this rampage to 28,548, a Hidden Pivot resistance that looks likely to be fulfilled precisely. That means that if you've been riding with the move, you should either lighten up or put on some hedges when it gets to where it's going  The pattern is gnarly enough to favor all of our entry strategies, but there have been no pullbacks generous enough to offer a 'mechanical' entry opportunity on charts of this degree. Once above 28,548, bulls will have a lot of chewing to do in order to munch their way through supply just above, and below, the psychologically interesting number 30,000. Those who are trapped in bitcoin at much higher prices will probably need to see 45,000 before they turn from prayerful to greedy. _______ UPDATE (Mar 18, 9:00 a.m. EDT): The above was written after Friday's close. However, that was before I noticed a WSJ story that had been published around the same time. It began as follows: "Barney Frank says regulators seized Signature Bank last weekend because they wanted to send a message to other banks not to do business with the crypto industry. The evidence increasingly suggests the former Congressman could be right."  It is 8:40 Saturday morning, and BRTI for whatever reason appears not to be trading. This is unusual, but perhaps it is just a regular Saturday pause that I hadn't noticed before. In any event, I'll be interested to see how the article affects bitcoin. There are times when seemingly devastating news has no initial impact on a trading vehicle; then, after a baffling period of seeming calm, said vehicle collapses. These delays can be orchestrated by the usual dirtballs, who wisely resist the temptation to panic. This allows them to keep the trading vehicle hovering at altitude for

ESH23 – March E-Mini S&Ps (Last:3993.50)

– Posted in: Current Touts Free Rick's Picks

The big, lovely pattern shown (see inset) should serve our purposes for trading and analysis as the new week begins. That means we could have bought p=3847.13 on Friday and made a few bucks. As a practical matter, however, I rarely advise initiating a position at the closing bell. We have no way of knowing with confidence whether the midpoint support will be breached. Indeed, for all we can tell, the so-far modest rally from this Hidden Pivot could mark an important low for this correction of the bear market rally begun in October. However, we do know that if the futures relapse and smash p=3847, that would set them on a path down to at least p2=3667.19, or perhaps even to D=3487.25.  Both can be bottom-fished, but the larger opportunity would lie in getting short on the way down. Pivoteers will notice that I've used the middle peak of three to fix a point 'A' high. I refer to such middle-of-the-road coordinates as Pontiac/Oldsmobile peaks to drive home the point that they don't usually work. In this case, though, my choice is justified by the bounce precisely from p, which tends to corroborate the pattern itself. It will be trustworthy in any case (i.e., good enough for government work) with regard to the 'read' a decisive breach of p would give us on trend strength. Here's a smaller chart of a pattern that I posted Friday afternoon. I said it would control DaBoyz' manipulations, as it indeed did. Notice that it signaled two profitable 'mechanical' buys during the afternoon. The 3893.50 'D' rally target is still viable, pending whatever stupid tricks the Sunday night sleazeballs can gin up. ______ UPDATE (Mar 14, 6:12 p.m.): DaBoyz don't know they are being ruled by this pattern in the June contract right