About Me

Retired chief investment officer and former NYSE firm partner with 50 plus years experience in field as analyst / economist, portfolio manager / trader, and CIO who has superb track record with multi $billion equities and fixed income portfolios. Advanced degrees, CFA. Having done much professional writing as a young guy, I now have a cryptic style. 40 years down on and around The Street confirms: CAVEAT EMPTOR IN SPADES !!!

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Stock Market -- Chancy Action

A breakaway downleg ended this past week without the advent of
the furious, downside volume that would serve well to mark a low
point. Instead, we observe a "spike" bottom made by a powerful
upside burst led by the bedraggled financials. From a purely
statisitical / historic perspective, one should be sceptical of the
sudden spike low, particularly in a bear market.

Even with the surge up, though, the market remains oversold and
that leaves exploitable territory for the bulls who may wish to play
on for a few more days.

There is talk out there of a "reverse" trade -- short oil or, perhaps
the OSU ETF, and go long the SP 500 or even the financial sector,
like the XLF Spyder, which remains heavily oversold. This is
interesting concept stuff as the oil market has weakened sharply,
and a further decline would lead to better real economic growth
prospects down the road. But this is a trade only for the more
venturesome at this point, as there is little evidence that the oil market
has indeed shifted. Oil is still moderately overbought, so the "reverse'
trade could work further for only a brief while before the herd of
oil bulls try for a comeback.

The results of the meeting of Security Council members, the IAEA
and Iran in Geneva provided no resolution to the geopolitical issue
of Iran's nuke program. Attendance by US ambassador Burns seemed
to mark only determination to have the Iranians choose the carrot or
the stick within a couple of weeks. I mention this because all short term
players will need to watch the oil pits straight off tomorrow.

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