Monday, December 27, 2010

Santa's Gone...

... and just when I thought this was the worst Christmas ever, I got rewarded with a minor rally today in addition to some great trading insight over the weekend. I spent a lot of time strategising when I really should have been packing. But I've got half a mind to leave lots of stuff behind and I might just donate a tonne of fun to Oxfam or the Red Cross. I noticed Crate & Barrel is having a sale - yay! Although I would have liked to shop at Neiman Marcus instead, I'm going to do some low key living until I ascertain whether those companies I have job interviews with are worth getting excited about. I remember when I first moved to Belgium, I had nothing but a bed for almost a year. Since I've been through that, I can do that all over again until I settle in. And for my purposes, a bed is really all I need. I mean, you can even do it on the floor - trading that is.

So back to trading... I plan on investing in several penny stocks over the next quarter and will aim to bank a 7-40 fold return over the course of the next few months. How can this conceivably happen? Well, in addition to being in high beta, high volume penny stocks, several other factors also need to be present in order to make a penny stock an interesting proposition:

1. actual revenues
2. growth
3. net cash on the balance sheet (as opposed to debt)
4. also make sure you don't shoot yourself right in the foot, which you will do if you get into a penny stock with debt and a penchant for losing money...

Buy a stock that has 1-3 of the aforementioned criteria at the lowest possible price and it's only a matter of time before it goes up if it is well supported by high volume and high beta. I've also been looking at 3 month charts for penny stocks. If I see there's a pretty wide spread on a 3 month chart, then that's basically a stock that I'll be jumping on asap.

So essentially, I'm going to invest just enough that'll make a 7-40 fold return worthwhile over the next three to four months. I'm going to invest at the lowest possible price. And I'm going to target different limits with each penny stock. I have several penny stocks I'm going to target at crazy bid prices.

I'm also going to continue to invest in undervalued and overlooked large cap stocks on a regular basis. Earnings season for the financial sector is coming up soon, isn't it?

+0.09% on the SBA
+0.80% on the Roth IRA

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Santa, Where's My Treasure Trunk?

The Santa Rally I was hoping for fell flat, leaving me wondering where's the treasure trunk?

Plus, I got rejected in the biggest six figure way. So, I'm leaving Belgium. I can't say I'm really disappointed, but I'm not exactly pleased either, although I'm really kind of embarrassed. I thought I was worth more than a +50% salary increase. Apparently, not to my employer. Sooner or later, I was planning to move to a bigger city where there's more lights, cameras, and Professors of Finance who can work with fractions. If now's the time, now's the time. But though I may not be worth my ideal salary here, I know I'm worth my ideal salary and I'm going to keep applying for jobs within my ideal salary range. If I only target these jobs, those are the only jobs I'll get. So, there's my lesson on price... plus I've still got that six interviews and counting thing going on.

Whilst my new position, GEN, didn't do much today, I noticed that IDGG had some good news: Indigo Energy Announces Major Progress in Field Operations and Corporate Changes. Apparently, IDGG has moved one step closer to production with a new natural gas well. I'm looking to target some crazy prices here. I'm thinking $1 to $2 could be a realistic range, but I'm going to implement profit taking at strategic intervals. If I can get a nickel, I'll take a nickel. LOL. I got in at $0.0099.

+0.21% on the SBA
-0.58% on the Roth IRA

Merry Christmas, HSFTs...

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Extra Credit

Oil continued to defy gravity, but HERO started to show some weakness and I sold at $3.40 on a major retracement. I've had this happen a couple of times. If a really fast +20% move occurs within a week or two, it's much better to be snappy and happy with the profit taking. For now, I put in another buy at my original entry with HERO at just about $2.97 (but if you were Swiss in a previous lifetime too, my original entry was actually $2.9695).

After thinking about my timing some more, I decided I wanted to hold onto something to see what Santa could bring me tomorrow. So, I got into a new position with Genon Energy (GEN). Genon says that it is a wholesale electricity provider, but after looking through their Web site, I still have no idea what they do. What exactly is wholesale electricity anyway? Are they a de facto shovel seller in the sense that they provide the infrastructure/energy for electricity companies to then sell to consumers? It matters not. I looked at their balance sheet and I like what it does. Here's why:

1. P/S and P/B are both way below 1. Plus, it's actually trading at just about 12% of book value.
2. It experienced a pretty high double digit price decline over the past 52 weeks, which means that anyone who hasn't taken profit on their shorts yet will get their stops run. Bwahahaha...
3. Very strong revenue growth
4. Lots of cash compared to other utility companies. If I recall well, many utility companies are trapped in debt, but Genon is different. It just completed a merger and based on the cash on its balance sheet, it could be worth a lot more.
5. It hit its 52WH back in January 2010 and it's trading just a touch higher than its 52WL. This means that risk:reward wise, it could get pretty smokin'.

I'm looking for more undervalued + overlooked stuff to buy up and am cooking up another top secret trading idea. I won't spill the beans until I'm in the trade yet - don't want any Professors arbitraging me.

-0.67% on the SBA
-0.27% on the Roth IRA

P.S. I got into GEN at $3.8598...

Professor, I Have A Question...

... are you single? LOL.

I'm in a good mood today - relatively speaking.

WTI Crude broke above $90 today, which meant HERO followed suit with a +5.93% jump - bringing my paper profit on the position to +20%. I would have liked to see a stronger close on HERO, but with all major stock markets across the world posting such a solid advance, I'm holding on for a few more days to see if Santa has some more shiny happy stuff in store for us - especially because China is getting involved in "concerted action" to aid the Euro crisis.

I have yet to see any upwards action on IDGG even though HERO is clearly delivering already.

+2.10% on the SBA
+1.02% on the Roth IRA

I might get busy packing over the next few days, so don't take it too personally if you don't hear my JNSB for a while.

Monday, December 20, 2010

New York City Girls, We're Unforgettable...

New money management insight, so scroll... below...

You may be in luck, my Men of New York! It seems I didn't see that glass ceiling and bumped my head right into it. I must have misread my boss' email there because I'm not getting much of a response on my counter offer. I guess my six interviews will come in handy, although I believe one of my co-workers is attempting to sabotage my future financial well-being. I heard her giving me a bad reference today. I'm quite sure she was the one behind the recent audit as well. Whatever! Justice always wins out and no one's got any sway over my financial well-being but me. I'm going to make sure I include someone else as a reference in the future. Moreover, I'm going to get reference letters before I leave.

After a weekend of doing my own homework, I found out I am still sub-par with my trading this year. Even with all my JNSB, I posted an embarrassing loss even though I have some unrealised gains that will greatly offset the losses if I take profit now. I'm going to take the next few weeks to redeem myself.

Forcing myself to review my YTD performance made me realise that I can technically be trading over $1 million on only five figures without using margin. Suppose you only have $10,000. If you aim to turn that capital 100 times in a year, you will have traded over $1 million on a minimum of 9 roundtrip trades per month. I'm going to now aim for ten roundtrip trades every month with my bike. If I manage to get a double digit ROI, that's enough to never face the glass ceiling again. It may seem far-fetched, but I'm going for the gold-digging!

I also want to highlight some areas where I could have done better this year so that I can remember this for next time. Basically, I missed out on high double digit gains this year with BGCP (+100%), CENX (+60%), DFS (+36%), IPG (+43%), and even BNHNA (+58%). I traded all these stocks the same way. I found they were being undervalued due to a low P/S and P/B value. So, when I trade this strategy next time, I'll be more patient with the exits because quite frankly, I'm tired of getting the shorter end of the stick here.
So let's talk about HERO, my latest high beta winner. We closed above the Sell In May & Go Away High and broke above the high touched in November today, which is pretty bullish to me. Will this be where prior resistance becomes support? If we break through this level, that'd be a really nice Santa Rally for me.

It looks like Harry wants to put out my fire though. The past five days have been wrought with tension and we broke below 3-month support today. I'm still keeping an eye on that $9.99 level I've been so enchanted by ever since HWD earnings came out. Let's see if we move below $10 and what it does there.

I lagged the market, but I know I can do this! I can trade. I'm really great with market bottoms, aren't I?

0% on the SBA
+0.11% on the Roth IRA

I vow never to be the market bottom of everyone's jokes from now on, but didn't I vow that before? This time, I'm making it happen!

Friday, December 17, 2010

I Put Myself Out There...

I've only got a few more days left at my current job and after the emotional speeches at my colleague's retirement party yesterday (or was it the champagne?), I started doubting my resignation, especially after I sent a goodbye email to my boss and received an email back saying that it was not his wish to let me go. I never realised that, but I felt it to be true even though so much has gone on this year. So I put myself out there today and asked for a counter offer to be considered. I did not decrease what I wanted as my salary, but I did defer it until after a key project would be completed - effectively making it a bonus of sorts. I have to say it wasn't easy as I am a small person with a big ego, but if my boss could tell me that it wasn't his wish to let me go, then the least I could do was propose what I thought to be a fair solution. Fair, though, is a subjective term and what is fair to one person may not seem fair to another.

I don't know if it'll work out, but if it does, then my Men of New York will have to wait. I added another interview to my schedule if I do get back to New York though - for a total of 5 - make that 6 - so far. There's now one that I really think would be quite exciting and they sound like they really want me too. Wish me luck, Professors of Finance! I know good things happen to good people and though I'm evil on the trading floor, I'm a good girl otherwise. Well, most of the time anyway. Especially when I'm in the Confessional Booth. LOL.

I also had a little bit of QU luck with my portfolio today, thanks to HERO and C.

+0.44% on the SBA
+0.63% on the Roth IRA

A little more, please...

Happy Weekend, HSFTs! And a happy shiny reminder to do your own homework!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Imagine Being the Only Volume On A Penny Stock...

... that wouldn't be funny at all if you're trying to sell. I didn't get much action with IDGG yet, but after a few days of retracements, HERO finally broke above $3 today with a +8.04% move up caused by some optimistic US Gulf contracts coming in for offshore drilling companies. The bears can't say I didn't warn them. LOL.

The tiny move up on my portfolio today did not offset the losses from the past few sessions, but I'm happy I decided to add to my portfolio to minimise Harry and Prince Charming's impact on my portfolio. Oh, I was so wrong with Harry. Who knew he could cut like a double-edged sword?

Since I'm still feeling battered, no real trading insight and just a report card that's slightly better than expected:

+1.05% on the SBA
+0.29% on the Roth IRA

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Professor, I Don't Think This Is the Class I Signed Up For...

It felt like some Professors of Finance decided to sell all the stocks in my portfolio, but I was able to get into a new position with Indigo Energy (IDGG) - a new high beta high volume penny pincher I found whilst doing my own homework last night. I decided to put my pennies where my pout was and bought a few mini lots worth of this stock - as in 1 mini lot = ten thousand shares (times a few). I'm a few hundred dollaraire and I'm proud of my achievements. LOL. I got in at less than a penny a share, so what's wrong with having a bike when you can turn the risk:reward in your favour like this?

I'm going to try out something new here. I'm going to research a few more penny stocks, get in at a penny a share and position myself with 1 mini lot in every stock. If even a few of these hit 10 cents a share, that would be some change you can believe in. The fact that I'm getting into high beta and high volume penny stocks is key here. You don't want to get into any low beta ones, nor do you want to get stuck with penny stocks that are rarely traded. I'd look for a penny stock with a volume of at least 300,000.

Here's the math:

10,000 shares x $0.01 = $100

10,000 shares x $0.10 = $1000


Obviously, much more beautiful than my report card:

-3.26% on the SBA
-2.21% on the Roth IRA

Shut up! I can hear your Bwahaha all the way from here...

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

To Shovel Sellers...

... OMG, my strategies are actually starting to make sense.

Global Spending On Resources Booms...

Let's see if they start making cents too - which is all that really matters.

I Vowed to Beat the Dow...

... but ended up with a very bad report card after the FOMC Statement, which just reinforces my raving-lunatic type hatred for Bernanke:

-3.01% on the SBA
-1.5% on the Roth IRA

Nothing much happening in Extended Hours Trading in the financial sector yet, but as 10-Year Treasury Yields rose sharply today, I'm thinking if I just stick with the strategy I embarked on earlier in the year (i.e. sticking my head in the sand), I'll end up like the GOLs - quite OK.

My newest addition, HERO, didn't do much today, but Harry continued to move south along with Prince Charming.

I've been pondering the topic of asset allocation as well and since it's technically impossible for me to follow the 3-5% money management rule, I'm making up my own rule. I will pay attention to top-line growth with my positions from now on. Once a position gets to more than 38.2% (Fib level) of my account, I'm going to have to start mentally putting up red flags and taking action.

Monday, December 13, 2010

My New Position...

After my failed attempt to add insult to injury last week by trying to buy HWD at $9.99 and selling BAC way before its time, I felt dumb and dumber. So I spent part of my weekend looking at some balance sheets - not many, but just enough to ascertain that there are still good buying opportunities in the market. My biggest criterion: to look for a stock that still has a very big 52 week decline. Due to Santa's imminent arrival, I've got a bullish bias for the rest of the year as I did the whole year. What went down must go up!

So I started off the week with some more market confidence. In addition to receiving an invitation to an interview with a second company, I decided to hop into a new position today. I bought HERO at $2.9695. I initially wanted to get in at $2.50, but then decided: if I don't do it now, I'm never going to do it. I'll be waiting and waiting for the right moment and sooner or later, Santa's going to pass me by. So, I ignored my trading discipline and got in at market, but only invested the original amount I allocated for this position. I have a plethora of reasons for getting into the trade, including but not limited to:

1. the 52 week change on HERO is -39.19%, which means that if the stock market continues to go up this year, the reversal that has already started taking place on HERO will rapidly intensify - with me being one of the main beneficiaries
2. relatively high beta on HERO of 3.04
3. P/B and P/S are both way below 1. In a bull market, sales will start to count. In a bear market, people are more concerned about debt.
4. only has 114 million shares outstanding, which means that this could move as fast as Harry when the bulls take control
5. Insiders have purchased from $2.60 to $2.86 earlier this year
6. last but not least, a good risk:reward scenario... if it hits the 52WH at $5.85, that's about a +97% gross profit. Longer term, HERO was near $40 before Lehman hit. Oil prices continue to defy gravity. If I know miners like I think I know miners, then they're going to start striking whilst the iron's hot - meaning they'll produce more when prices are high. This, in turn, will benefit my shovel seller, HERO.

Shanghai was the most alpha today with a +2.88% move, nearing the 3000 level I have been waiting for. S&P looks slightly droopy on the 5-day and 10-day charts though. Could it be an Andrews Pitchfork in the making? I hope I didn't just buy a top since my portfolio is lagging the market!
-0.29% on the SBA (SBA percentages are slightly messed up as I added some cash to it - probably would have been a bigger decline had I left it alone)
+0.29% on the Roth IRA
Honestly, I'm not crazy about my two interviews. They just sort of make me feel better about having something. So, I promise myself that I'm not going to apply to every job I can find now. I'm only going to go for the ones that I really want.

Friday, December 10, 2010

There, There, Harry...

Harry basically stood in position for the rest of the session, not moving any further south - closing the day at -12.87%. Oh, my love! We're going to get through this - and together, we'll achieve market bliss once again when retail sales come in better than expected after the Santa Clause Rally. Don't you want to fill my order at $9.99?

This year, the US economy created 668,000 net NFP jobs, which means people with jobs will want to buy Made In China stuff. China managed to make it through relatively unscathed, so I'm looking for further growth in China now that job creation is back. Recall I mentioned that I thought China's economy has now reached the point of no return a few months back. Now that the US economy is stabilising, this will add to the global momentum.

This also means that I'm going to have to get myself a new job before the new MBA class graduates in May. I did some fun analysis and if job creation continues at this pace, I may find myself a new job just before the MBAs hit the ground running. If we take the top 10% of all MBA graduates from the top 15 universities in the world, I'm competing against about 4800 people. Not all of them will be looking for marketing jobs. 8-10 six figure marketing jobs are being added on a daily basis. If all these 4800 people look for marketing jobs, I'll have to spend about 11 to 20 months looking for a new job. However, it would be a stretch to say that even 45% of these people have majored in marketing. So let's say they did. If so, then I'd be competing with 2160 people, which means that I could be looking at 5 to 9 months of Do Not Pass Go, Do Not Collect Six Figures, Go Straight To Yale.

I think (and pray) that I'll find a job much sooner. My backup plan is to line up my ducks and look for an internship within the financial services industry once I get back to my home sweet home. I've also got about a year of expenses saved up, so bet your market bottom I've got a trading ego the size of Belgium. LOL.

All my analysis amounts to null today. My dear Harry ran the other direction, leaving me with a pitiful:

-6.22% on the SBA (yes, unfortunately that is a 6)
+0.83% on the Roth IRA

Happy, Happy Weekend my fellow HSFTs / Professors of Finance!

My Prices... They're Self-Righteous...

The love of my portfolio, Harry Alpha Winston, is being sold like there's no tomorrow. Am I going to stand by and do nothing? Or am I going to stand up for my man and try to touch his market bottom with some more crazy prices? I put in a buy at $9.99 even though we're at $12.55 as we speak.

What am I thinking? HWD missed analyst expectations by 2 cents, but Frederic De Narp was clearly a good hire, driving revenue growth by +88%.

If S&P continues to go up the rest of the year, then this is one ride I don't want to miss.

I also view today's news from China's bank reserve requirements as a buying opportunity for commodities in general - especially after speaking with my friend, Tim.

That Grand Ole Bull Flag I was looking at on the 3-year S&P a while back is not over and done with yet. If the bulls get their way, 2011 is going to be one of the most poetic years yet.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Previously On ForexDiva...

... bridges were burned... tables were turned... lessons were learned.

Why, oh why did I sell BAC? It closed at $12.65 today, which would have put me so close to the $12.87 resistance I was watching. If I had only taken profit two days later, I would have been +13.15% in two weeks. Instead, I was content with only a little more than +3%. It was mediocre. It was fraidy. I condemn myself for giving into the bears and yielding to my fears, but now I know better for next time! Resistance doesn't always foreshadow a sell-off. We need to see what's happening with support as well. In this case, it was clearly the bulls saying: "Hit the brakes and fake out the flakes." And I was a flake.

Up today: Harry set a new high and made me sigh. I'm waiting on Harry's earnings announcement and will be monitoring extracurricular price action during Extended Hours Trading.

+1.07% on the SBA
+1.25% on the Roth IRA

I outperformed all major market indices around the globe once again - not that I'm bragging (well, maybe just a little)! Now, I'm waiting for Shanghai to break above 3000 again. Will it happen? Will the GOLs be alpha enough to test the 6000 pre-crisis level on FTSE? They're already so close to levels we haven't seen since Bear Stearns and S&P 500 seems to be holding onto the Lehman level as well. I don't feel smug yet, so I'm not going to sell until my trading ego reaches epic proportions.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Word To Your Mutters...

In the Confessional Booth here and... I got it all wrong with BAC! I own up to it, but it doesn't stop me from being upset. What I'm most upset about is not the fact that I let fear override logic, but the fact that I didn't believe in myself enough. I took the emotional approach. I did the analysis, but I went with my feelings. Based on today's price action, I made the wrong choice yesterday with BAC.

My portfolio has been comprised of mainly financial sector stocks since Lehman hit and I wasn't scared before, so why am I scared now?

But most of all, here's what I think went wrong analytically.

1. Price Action. There was resistance at $11.87, but price wasn't breaking at $11.50. In hindsight, this could have just signified a buyer stepping in who won't pay above a certain price. If we saw any further price declines below $11.50, then I would have been spared instead of seared. As of now, I missed out on at least another +4% gain. Now that's lame...
2. Three fundamental shifts in the market: 10-Year Treasury Yields moved up sharply yesterday to close above a 3% yield; optimism due to tax breaks from our FWFOCH; plus Nikkei continued to hold its own above 10,000.

I failed to see what I'd been wanting to see all year - that exodus from the bond markets that would signal the potential beginning of another bull run, but hopefully it'll be a lesson learned. Given the one step forward and three steps back we've been seeing all year, I may just be setting myself up for more disappointment, but we're Generation Y... we're not just pie in the sky!

So I'm still going to try to buy BAC at $10.50, though I might do better looking into some other stocks that are still trading close to their 52WLs. Let's see!

+0.28% on the SBA
+0.82% on the Roth IRA

Oh, so close! Nikkei beat my Roth IRA by 0.08%...

Up tomorrow... earnings announcement from my honey bee, Harry!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Does Harry Have A Plan To Be My Man?

Seems like it... and I've not only got a plan to take the Series 7 exam so no one ever rejects me for not having financial services experience again, but I've also got a plan to $10.50 people on BAC. Let's see if I can get a sponsor for doing the Series 7, but it sure would beat doing an internship, wouldn't it? Someone invited me in for an interview, but the job will be mainly commission-based. Even though it's a small step in the right direction, it's a big deal for me since it makes me feel like I'm not an abject failure and my top 10(?) business school background counts for something on Wall Street!

As for BAC, I'm out of that position for the time being. I'm not sure if it was the right approach, but I sold BAC today at $11.60 after getting in at $11.18 on 23 November. This is the one I tried to do the Crazy Price Strategy with yesterday. It looks like $11.87 is proving to be strong resistance. BAC has tried that level a few times and it's been proving to be a hurdle it can't surmount. Recall I got $10.99'ed on some unsubstantiated WikiLeaks rumours last week.

I wasn't really paying that much attention to the Pandora's Box that WikiLeaks might open up, but after speaking with my colleague The PermaBear yesterday, I started getting scared. And the more I thought about it, the fraidier I got. So, I did my options analysis and all looks clear on BAC. In fact, calls look promising, but the $11 level looks a bit like a See Ya Wouldn't Want To Be Ya Level on BAC. My question is: will the $9.99 infomercial level I was looking at earlier in the year be in play for BAC - or was that $10.99 telling enough in and of itself? In hindsight, it was clearly a fake-out.

I looked at Insider Activity and noticed Donald E. Powell, a Director, recently purchased 5,000 shares of BAC. $11 has been holding and an Insider purchased BAC at $11.30, so based on these two elements alone, BAC would seem like a straight buy especially since it's been in a downtrend almost the entire year. Yet I'm heavily into the financial sector already and I'd rather keep my moola out of harm's way with support feeling so weak. Yes, I'm going with my feelings here. If I get in at $10.50 again and it tests $11.87 as resistance, then that's a 13% gain - if I manage to get in. If it takes off now like CENX just did after I let it go, I'm going straight in the Confessional Booth.

For now, my 17-day sprint with BAC happened to be only a +3.75% gross profit on a very small position. It doesn't feel like the high beta that I need to succeed, but I'm trying to develop some trading discipline and this may seem like the insane way to go about it. I am gaining some valuable practice here, right, Professors?

+1.73% on the SBA
+2.04% on the Roth IRA

Notice how my Roth IRA is starting to slightly outperform my SBA whereas most of the year, it's been the other way around. Could this signify a pivot point in the market as well? Time will tell.

Red alert on C! I saw some 10 million ask sizes on C today, which at today's prices was about $46.3 million being sold. That certainly added to how jittery I was feeling even though my portfolio put in a good fight.

Monday, December 6, 2010

I'll Be In A Whole New Tax Bracket...

... the 10% tax bracket that is. But if you're stellar at trading, that's not necessarily a bad thing - keeping about 90% of what you make, that is. Today's market action proved that I'm not in that category just yet and the Professors of Finance out there may just get to have their way with me. I did far worse than the global market today.

-0.74% on the SBA
-0.64% on the Roth IRA

I have been researching some $5 and under plays and I found several shovel sellers that hit their 52WHs in January. If seasonality repeats itself, then I'm in for some quick cash if I manage to get in. I'm flip-flopping though. Do I buy now or do I buy after the Santa Clause Rally? Is there going to be a SCR? One month is getting to be too long to tie your cash up in the market. I'm trying to time my trades for quicker gains rather than staying in one sector for an entire year (or three).

I'm also trying out a few crazy prices on Extended Hours Trading. See if you can catch me there.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Are You Positive It's A Negative?

As every major business Web site reported on the poor NFP numbers, I caught a glimpse of the fact that the private sector created 93,000 jobs in November and that was the overlooked number that mattered to me. When I did my NFP analysis a few weeks ago, I noticed that the economy is at a critical level. Net job growth since Bear Stearns has reached 668,000 - equivalent to a little over 10% of all jobs shed since February 2008 - and this is the first December since Bear Stearns where we've seen any job growth. The 39,000 additional growth in NFPs adds to that support level. So, are the bears out there sure this is a negative? If we see another month like June 2010, we'll be back to the psychologically important 1 million level. So your choice: buy now, or pay up later?

On a personal note, I've been actively applying for jobs in the US as well as London and every day, I'm seeing some new six figure marketing jobs being posted to various job sites. On a good day, about 8-10 marketing director level jobs are being posted. On an uneventful day, you'll see a repost of some old jobs that haven't yet been filled.

Talent is a scarcity, and I'll admit I've got talent, but I got rejected with this job I really, really wanted in the financial sector. Apparently, my 12 years of experience means nothing on Wall Street since I haven't had any financial services experience. So my business school education means nothing either. If there's any Professor of Finance out there looking for an intern, let me know. I'm serious here. Don't expect me to get you coffee though. I will test your support and resistance if you'd like.

My short term goal involves getting a job in either NYC or London and then simultaneously doing an internship within the financial services sector so that I can gain some credibility there. Wall Street is going to be back in the biggest way... I can feel it.

After being back in a very big way yesterday, my SBA once again outperformed all major market indices around the world. Woohoo! However, I would have liked it even more if the Roth IRA had followed. I am now faced with a very interesting decision: should I rebalance now or should I rebalance later? The Roth IRA has been an underperformer for a while and it's typically when you get fed up with the market that a rebound is imminent.

+0.67% on the SBA
+0.06% on the Roth IRA

Happy Weekend, Professors of Finance! I hope I'll get an even better report card next week... otherwise, you can tutor me!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

A Sight for Four Eyes

LOL. That's not my joke, but I wish I'd thought of it. My portfolio got so steamy it would fog up the Professor's glasses!

Dean Harry Winston led us to victory today, moving up +7.10%. My E*Trade platform says 9 December is earnings announcement time for Harry. I can't wait! What other surprises would Harry have for us? Hopefully, it'll be the carat rather than the stick.

Today's report card was stellar! I once again outperformed all major market indices across the world - but only with one portfolio. FTSE beat my Roth IRA... And brent crude broke above $90.

+5.04% on the SBA (that's really a 5 there in case you wear glasses...)
+1.96% on the Roth IRA

Since ABK filed for Chapter 11, I've been thinking... why not buy the dip on the strongest competitor in the sector that's affected for a short term play? Obviously, it would only be a good strategy if the strongest competitor is actually strong to begin with. If the weak are going down, the strongest will always benefit most and that's where the money is. Let's see if this strategy actually works in real trading...

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Who's 10.99'ing Us Now?

The Bwahaha's loud and clear! Even though I had a remarkable day, what I don't get is how an 83 billion EUR bailout spurred a multi-session sell-off whilst an 8 billion EUR rescue programme could cause an across-the-board cover your assets type uptown girl move like this? That's been the theme of the year - fake everyone out both ways.

Thank God I didn't fall for that $10.99 move on BAC, although I was watching that a while back. Recall I even wanted to $9.99 people for some infomercial level success. So far, it seems my $11.18 is still in play and I'm still watching that $12.70 something resistance, hoping for $15 and eventually aiming for a slight break above the ultimate 52WH level of $19.86.

No real trading insight today, just a really good report card, Professors:

+2.93% on the SBA
+2.41% on the Roth IRA

Looks like my portfolio outperformed every major stock market index around the world - for a day! Now, let's see if I can do this a few more times...

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

BAC 10.99'ed Us!

How could you, BAC?

-0.93% on the SBA
-0.07% on the Roth IRA

In percentage terms, it looks painful. In dollar terms, it's still bearable. Get it, bear-able? LOL. Yeah, that was so bad.

Anyway, I'm getting ready for another evil plot... I'm getting ready to plan for Lehman exiting from bankruptcy. I know I may be a few years too early, but that's going to be the next big thing in two years. So to be able to do it right, I've got to plot.

I'm already in Lehman bonds and Lehman shares, but given previous experience, these are not guaranteed winners. I'm therefore going to use my recent 'sell the shovels, not the gold' insight and look for Lehman counter-parties or business partners that may or may not benefit from the Lehman bankruptcy exit. I'd then keep a close eye on these shovel suppliers for some gold-diggin' fun...

Monday, November 29, 2010

Wow, I Didn't Realise How Much I Missed NY...

... until I spoke to the leasing office at an apartment I'm looking to get into. This lady was telling me how people post fake real estate ads all the time and I (admittedly, naively) asked: why? I suppose I sounded like a spoiled princess too, because she answered: "I can’t explain to you all that’s wrong with the world." I kind of can't wait to get back, yet I'm still in the midst of arranging my relocation, which is a tiny bit stressful. I shall have to work on my retorts though. I'm nine years out of practice now!

I apparently answered to two potential fake ads so far. All I can say is if it looks too good to be true, then it probably is. If all the other apartments in new buildings are above a certain price and there's just one or two that happen to be slightly discounted, get ready to say no to the bait and switch. Now, I think my best course of action is to deal directly with the leasing offices situated in the apartments rather than going through an agent. I am happy to report that due to my own due diligence, I averted staying in The Octagon on Roosevelt Island, which used to be a hospital - or something. That's a little more Bwahaha than I can handle.

My three honey bees (BAC, C, HWD) lifted my portfolio today.

+0.88% on the SBA
+0.69% on the Roth IRA

Some really weird moves:

PHHM with +86.34% (even though it filed for Chapter 11)
FNVRF with +33.68%

Friday, November 26, 2010

Harry Just Might Have More Under His Belt...

I, for one, reckon he's got a lot more that we haven't yet seen. He got upgraded once again and most retailers have led the market the past week or so. TIF even broke above $60 a few days ago. I lament the fact that I chose NYX over TIF that summer of '09 when I had a choice between buying NYX or TIF. And I went with my head rather than my heart - and consequently missed out on an opportunity to basically double my money.

Although I saw a lot of upside with Harry too, I know it'll be some time before TIF gets back to the $30s again - if at all. This leads me to contemplate getting into more HWD in hopes that Harry will chase after Tiffany and we'll still get a happily ever after. So where should I touch Harry's prices?

The Sultan seems to have left the room too and now I'm left with a cold -6.96% on this BCS position. I know it was wrong! I should have taken profit ages ago when I had that run of QU luck, but I was stubborn and now, I've got to strategise on my next course of price action with BCS.

And now, the part you know you like best... I'm going into the Confessional Booth again and this time I'm reviewing my economic performance for the month of November so far. I'd love to chart my daily performance, but doing so manually may get very tedious. Still, I think it'll give me an unobstructed view of my actual trading performance and indicate to me areas I can improve on.

Anyway, this month... not only did I have 10.5 bad days and 7.5 good days, but my bad days are still worse than my good days. So, my target now is to try to get my good days to be at least twice as good as they are now because I know one's sunny days are limited according to the month's trading calendar.

The problem with portfolio rebalancing is that when I need to sell something at a loss, I often don't want to do it. However, I learned from selling my ABK bonds early in the year even though I didn't like doing it. Often times, you need to give up whatever is not working in order to gain something much more valuable back. And I did that with ABK and didn't get left holding the proverbial half-torn bag when ABK ripped off the bandaid and filed for Chapter 11 only after dragging investors through the mud for over two years. Recall that ABK was so close to $95 back in the day and is now only worth $0.143.

I set that money free just in time and even used it to do some quick plays with BAC and MS if I remember well. Those were the days! LOL.

Now, my trading has gone haywire once again and I'm looking to next week to redeem myself!

+0.05% on the SBA
-1.80% on the Roth IRA due to the Sultan's cruel and heartless retracement

Happy Weekend, Professors of Finance!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

I Missed the Mark...

... by a very small margin. NASDAQ put in the best performance today with a +1.95% increase and my better portfolio only did a +1.91%. Yes, that little bit does matter to me - especially when you set up a certain expectation for the performance of your portfolio and then just fall short of it. Not that it's bothering me that much, but still, 0.04% is 0.04%. It's the difference between being below average and being on par with the market. And to a person who was Swiss in a previous lifetime, it matters. Harry pleased me most with a +2.11% advance. Soon, we'll be getting Harry's earnings announcement - something I'm very much looking forward to. Oh, Harry, will you please touch my prices at $14.57 once again and take that top out for me?

BAC bounced back slightly, but nothing too dramatic.


+1.91% on the SBA
+1.37% on the Roth IRA

Other than the financial sector, I'm into the retail sector as well with HWD and BULIF, but only one is a mover. If BULIF doesn't start doing something soon, it's going out the window with my next portfolio rebalancing!

Now I'm going to research some more stocks so I can decide how I'll invest that beautiful, magnificent moola.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

The Market's Pace Put Me Back In Place...

Plus, I set it and forgot it and now I'm in it to win it with BAC. I entered at $11.18 automatically, cinematically. The 6 million bid sizes are back on C as well, though the bears left most of us in tears. We had two important announcements today - the Fed Minutes and US GDP. US GDP pointed to modest growth and other than existing home sales data being slightly off today, all the other news announcements globally were better than expected as well. The market obviously didn't think so and decided to focus on the indecision shown by the Fed Minutes as well as ongoing Eurozone woes.

Fed Minutes? Isn't that a bit of a lagging indicator to sound like a broken record? How can the market sell off like this when German and French PMI simultaneously painted a rose-coloured picture? And how did our Yen Friends manage a rally like that today? I wouldn't know about this stuff, but my price levels have still been in play and that's all that really matters. CENX turned out to be the one that got away when it tried for $15 and failed recently after I abruptly ended our affair involving the chart. Now I've gotten back together with another ex-investment, BAC to see if we've still got some trading synergy going on.

What else matters?

Headlines like these contradicting the ongoing fears:

Total Loan Loss Reserves Drop To Lowest Levels Since 4Q 2007
Share Of Unprofitable Banks Drops To Lowest Levels Since 2Q 2008
Total Banking Industry Net Income Totals $14.5B In 3Q 2010
US Banking Industry Profits Jumped Again In 3Q 2010

A report card like this:

-2.03% on the SBA
-1.81% on the Roth IRA

...doesn't mean that my trading ego is too big to fail... especially when BAC seems to be forming an Andrews Pitchfork one-year downtrend that's ripe for a reversal. Could this be the double bottom I've been waiting for? This time, I'm setting my initial target at $15 and my secondary target at a break above the 52WH of $19.86 on BAC even if the timing seems to be a little off. But I've got two main price drivers in my favour: Santa and the BAC earnings announcement on 21 January 2011.

Head high, HSFTs!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Your Pace Or Mine?

Over the weekend, I was researching some more high beta stocks and discovered that it's actually possible to have a beta that's slightly higher than 5. This specific stock, I'll keep to myself for the time being, but I'll share with you another insight that I had. There are only so many sunny days in a week, so when the market's hot, you have to get into the farm, work the fields, and get your subsistence harvest going.

I'm going to now take a small four figures and see how many times I can turn it into an 8% profit in a month. Is it actually possible to get at least a few percentage gain in one day? Is it possible to actually get a few different trades to profit a few percentage in a day? Is it actually possible that I'm actually mad?

I don't know how many times I've been told that it's already so remarkable if you're able to make a double digit gain consistently in the stock market on an annual basis. But if it were up to those people, you'd need millions sitting in the bank in order to get any decent ROI.

Now I'm going to aim higher... so, your pace or mine?

Whatever your pace, don't go by my portfolio's pace:

-0.74% on the SBA
-1.40% on the Roth IRA

I'm going to rebalance my portfolio with some high pace high beta stocks. Will I do a 5+ beta stock? It depends, but I'm dying to do something...

Friday, November 19, 2010

Protect Your Assets...

Today's market action didn't put me back in a trade with either BAC or C and I'm wondering if I'll be able to get back in before the trend takes off. There has been a two week sell-off so far and now that the holiday cheer is here, we may be gearing up for a beautiful rally. The moment I've been waiting for has occurred. Nikkei finally broke above 10,000 this week and I forgot to blah about it. I'm not sure how convincing the move is and whether it'll be sustained. But I'm starting to realise that when a rare move like this occurs, it must be a real move. Nikkei doesn't seem to move very quickly, which means that if it's able to hold the 10,000 level, this would bode well for overall market confidence. This would be about the fifth test of 10,000 on Nikkei since Lehman.

If we see Nikkei at 10,000 and Shanghai above 3,000 again, that'll really be something, wouldn't it?

Did Bernanke actually talk because it doesn't seem the market reacted very strongly to his commentary? I checked Extended Hours price action for a few financial sector stocks and notice that most of them are up at least slightly.

I'm going to wait a few more days to see if I can buy either BAC or C at my target levels. If there's no major move, I plan on doing a quick That Time of The Month Options-Based Play. Yes! It's near the end of the month and you all know what that means - market volatility...

Nothing major on the report card...

+0.12% on the SBA
-0.52% on the Roth IRA

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Volatility's Back...

Finally! But it was totally unexpected. I was thinking I'd be able to buy BAC back at my original entry of $11.18, but got left out of a minor move back up instead.

Still, my portfolio benefitted and I was able to beat the US market indices with what is my smaller account. If only it had been the bigger one, but I'm not complaining (or am I?).

I'm practically boiling over in anger still. I've got about one more month to go before I leave Belgium. I'm still at my job until then in order to complete three - turned into five- projects I'm working on. All of a sudden I got a last minute presentation and then I discovered if I'm going to remain professional, I've got one more thing to take care of before I leave other than the agreed upon three and then one thing led to another and now I've got a pile of work, which gets me just a little bit stressed out. When I do something, I want to do it right.

So today, some guy started criticising me on a very minor part of my work and calling it [a Bachelor's of Science degree - you're smart enough to know what it means]. And I was totally thinking... you know, this is why I'm leaving! Not only did I get underpaid, I have to put up with this disrespect all the time. I get the feeling my whole industry is like this, so I'm going to go to some place where I know people probably aren't going to be very nice. If you're going to get mistreated, you have to at least get paid for it.

Are there any good companies to work for?

+1.84% on the SBA
+1.26% on the Roth IRA

On another note... I found a job that seemed interesting enough and when I looked at the industry I would be working for, it was for "protective" products - their exact words. What's that supposed to mean? What I think it is?

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

I Found At Least Three...

...undervalued and overlooked stocks that are trading near their misunderestimated June 2009 lows. One of them is a bit of a stretch, but perhaps a few more days in the red will bring it closer to my liking in terms of pricing. BAC is already quite close to my original entry, so my buy order might get hit if my C buy order doesn't get touched first. So, I'm wondering out loud... should I set my buy orders even lower since we're at key psychological levels again with the major US stock indices? DJIA is near 11,000. NASDAQ is right below 2500. S&P 500 fell below the critical 1200 level again. Maybe it's better to duck just a little lower? That would be a bit too evil, wouldn't it? Bwahaha... take the 52WL and then do a further discount buy. LOL all the way to the bank even if it only tests previous resistance!

Another fun play? Check out currency pairs and see if any of them are trading near their June 2009 lows! I don't know if there are actually any, but if there are, then that could get exciting, right?

Nothing too exciting with my portfolio, but I reckon you guessed it:

-0.28% on the SBA
-0.38% on the Roth IRA

Earnings announcement alert: Harry's up next - well, at least very soon! My E*Trade trading platform says it's on 6 December 2010. However, I've never gotten the date right for some reason with my dearly beloved Harry.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010


I'm OK... today's sell-off didn't kill me, but are we going up or are we going down? From today's action, it seems my recent BAC sell wasn't such a bad move after all. However, the rest of my portfolio set me back and left me wondering if I should remain so optimistic even in the face of tremendous opposition. I suppose Thursday's unemployment numbers and Bernanke's Friday Commentary will give us definitive confirmation - at least until the next big news events roll around to save or deter my portfolio:

-2.59% on the SBA
-2.24% on the Roth IRA

Interestingly, I woke up this morning and I was totally thinking... you know, I have been making millions (OK, maybe million with no s) - just not for myself! So, I'm feeling like the next phase in my life journey should definitely include a lot more financial accountability for my wallet.

Even more interestingly, the net NFP figures I was referring to in yesterday's post are actually at a critical level! We've now created 10% of the total NFP jobs lost since Bear Stearns/Lehman. Therefore, being ever rose-coloured, I'm going to start looking for some undervalued and overlooked stocks that are still priced near their June 2009 lows. Why June 2009? It's not as arbitrary as it seems, but recall a few months back, we had that ridiculous report that said that the recession officially ended in June 2009. Is it a stretch to find a stock priced at that level? It might be, but if I happen to be buying another top, at least it won't hurt as much.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Shop Around...

Shop, shop, shop, shop with that pound. I mean, dollar... I've got a new perspective, so scroll down...

Today, retail sales were better than expected, but the rally I was hoping for did not materialise, although there are at least three noticeable W double bottom formations on major market indices around the world - namely the 5-day FTSE, Eurofirst, and Shanghai. S&P 500 looks like it's about to dubbaya as well.

Does it mean anything? Or am I jumping to conclusions here?

Nikkei also looks like it might try for 10,000 again and Shanghai faked everyone out and bounced back above 3,000. Treasury yields also apparently jumped - sharply.

This week's big event seems to be Bernanke's Friday Commentary, so I'm going to use the time between now and then to try to buy on a dip. I'm quite sure I got played with BAC, though I'm of the opinion that if I can get into another lot with C or a comparably priced stock, I'll be doing just fine this holiday season.

Sometimes, I don't get why Bernanke always has to blah, but I guess you won't get why I always have to blah either. My report card was definitely blah:

+0.19% on the SBA
+0.14% on the Roth IRA

I was doing my own homework this weekend and noticed that NFPs had a major pivot point back in April 2010 by breaking the downtrend with a major hiring spree. I'm going to watch out for psychological levels or when we get to a Fib level on the total number of jobs lost during the downturn. According to my calculations, we had a decline of about 6.2 million NFP jobs since Bear Stearns. Net NFP job creation since April 2010 stands at 629,000. When it gets to a psychological level such as 1 million, the momentum will most likely really get going. So, now I'm going to start my own market accumulation strategy and do the whole mini-monopoly thing even though short term, it might get scary.

I also found this article about Zoe Cruz, who was previously with Morgan Stanley. It was such a dated article, but it got me so inspired because she's got a fascinating story - especially the part about the trader who reported to her who ended up making more than she did - and I started wondering... can I do it too? Make millions... just like that?

I think I've already got the Czarina part down pat...

But the article definitely inspired me to think that if you've got talent, you need to stand up and defend that talent. And you definitely need to get paid for it! So what I'm doing by quitting my job even though I only have a small bike-sized account... it might seem crazy (and what about me isn't). But I know what I'm doing! (Darn it!) LOL.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Be All That You Can Be...

Maybe I should join the army? The army of the bears - that is. I took one step towards the initiation process by selling BAC almost on the day's low at $12.05. It was a moment of panic that I'm not proud of, although it did yield me +7% in three weeks. There's no logic to my selling though. Recall last week, I was at +12% in two weeks. In other words, I got played.

My plan is to either buy BAC back at my original entry of $11.18 or to buy C at a discount from its most recent resistance level of $4.50. Either way, a test of recent resistance will yield me another profitable run up - if we're not due for another few week sell-off, which as I've mentioned before, is totally something that Wall Street is definitely capable of orchestrating. Obviously, the main question is how low can we go this time? Shanghai fell -5.16% today. That's certainly enough to scare a fraidy cat!

Looking forward to next week's data, though, we have US Retail Sales due out on Monday, which means that if I got played, then the bulls will be in control if we get positive data.

My latest bright idea is to look for two penny stocks - one for the bulls and one for the bears. I'd then take a four figure position in each stock when the price is right and then sell on just a few cent move up. A few cent move up in penny stocks, remember, could be just as thrilling as a few hundred pip move up in the forex. I would focus on the goal of daily profit taking - no matter how small the amount is. I would trade the rest of my portfolio the traditional ForexDiva way.

The good news is that it seems much easier to find a good apartment in NYC than it is to find a good job. At least I won't have to be homeless! I don't know if the door to London is open to me at the moment, although I got the impression that there were at least three open doors within my industry. But I think switching industries at this juncture, whilst I'm still relatively young, wouldn't necessarily be a misstep. In fact, it could open up many opportunities to me, especially if I go into a field where the male:female ratio is much more favourable, if you know what I mean. My first priority is work though!

My report card today:

-2.71% on the SBA
-1.47% on the Roth IRA

Oh, will you be my Medicine Man? Because I think I need a band-aid on my broken ankle... LOL.

Have a good weekend, HSFTs!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

'Cause I'm Country Strong...

... but I won't stay down long...

And I am ticked off that the market sold off today only because Cisco was downbeat.
That must be a joke! Cisco has revenues of $40 billion and the whole market falls because a company with $40 billion revenues that has an overvalued market cap of $116 billion gave a subdued forecast. And the market thinks it’s worth $116 billion… What about companies that have $279 billion in net cash? They’re currently only worth a double digit billion market cap. I won't tell you which stock that is, but I'm thinking of buying it - and possibly a lot of it, or as much as I am technically capable of doing anyway.

Another thing that gets me ticked off? My portfolio:

+0.14% on the SBA
-1.39% on the Roth IRA

I need to blow off some steam and I think I can only do that by plotting up some way to run other people's stops in the forex market!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Yes, Please...

It was a lovely day for my portfolio as unemployment claims declined and the trade deficit narrowed. Not much seemed to happen with the broader market, but my portfolio sizzled - which is just the way I like it.

Still, I know that in order to be a successful trader, I need to push myself to systematically take profit. Here are my bimbo thoughts...

This year, I noticed a few different scenarios when profit taking is suitable for all investors (LOL):

1.When the broader market has reached a critical resistance level… like this recent touch of 1200 on the S&P.
2.When earnings season is about to end. Wow, that lull could be very painful. After BCS earnings season earlier in the year, I was holding onto a downtrend for the longest time.
3.When no other news is due out for a while – no economic data, etc. Data drives volatility. In the absence of data, other market forces take over price action and it’s usually not pretty.

4.When I’m feeling really smug… or when I feel like, yeah I could definitely day trade... that’s usually the time to take profit. LOL.
5.When a profit objective has been met… CENX was one good example. I kept watching the $14 to $16 level and when it hit $14, tried for $15, but failed, I should have taken profit. Failure of key psychological levels is a big sign to take profit.

These are just some of my ideas. I'm deliberately withholding some of my bimbo trading insight since I think this could give me a strategic competitive advantage and allow me to leverage my core competencies to drive my long term profitability. LOL.

+0.65% on the SBA
+1.55% on the Roth IRA


Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Did the Nikkei Really Move 500 Points In A Week?

I wasn't even really paying attention... and I'm wondering if it'll ever move back up above 10,000, which would be the strongest indicator that the recovery is really here to stay. It keeps testing just above 10,000, which has proven to be very strong resistance so far. I'm looking for this level slightly above 9200 on the one-year Nikkei to hold as horizontal support coinciding with the previous W bottom formation as the ultimate buy signal.

I think tomorrow's unemployment numbers will either propel us forward or push us back (duh!). If we've got NFP job creation going on and also receive an indication that unemployment claims are decreasing, that will be the final straw to break the bears' paws. So far this week, most numbers are failing to live up to expectations, so will unemployment be any different? I hope so! For the sake of my sanity... and my portfolio... and yes, here I go again, my future financial well-being.

Today was one painful day for my portfolio and the bears definitely got the last Bwahaha. I'm trying not to take it too personally. If I didn't study this week's data announcement lineup carefully yesterday, I'd be wondering if I should be selling along with the crowd. Now I'll take the wait and see approach and hope that we'll end up with some trend on trend tomorrow. If I step on the brakes now, I could be killing a trend.

-1.90% on the SBA
-1.32% on the Roth IRA

This, together with my recollection of a time when I thought gold could be a good sell as well as the Sultan's lacklustre economic performance, makes me feel slightly more bimbo than usual.

Interestingly, in a recent marketing webinar that I was watching, some guy was mentioning that during the gold rush, one of the richest men during the era was not someone who was digging for gold, but one who was selling the shovels.

That gave me a new investing idea to research companies that are based in sectors that service the sectors that are in play. I may still be able to buy them very close to their 52WLs, which makes the risk:reward very tempting. Don't go buying any tops! If you're going to buy, at least buy in undervalued sectors...

Monday, November 8, 2010

This Little Light of Mine...

... I'm gonna let it shine...

My Roth IRA started retracing today with the broader market, but S&P 500 still held onto the critical 1200 level. But for how long? For the trend on trend to continue, we have to receive confirmation that the US economy really is improving. This Wednesday, we'll get a glimpse of the latest unemployment claims figures and US trade balance. On Friday, we'll also get the University of Michigan Consumer Sentiment report. Recall that we had some positive NFP numbers last week, which left the bears in total exasperation as S&P 500 zoomed past the pre-Lehman level of 1200 once again and managed to hold for several days now. If we get positive numbers again this Wednesday and Friday, then we may see the bull flag formation on the S&P 500 3-year chart take full Bwahaha effect.

But will it happen? Or will we have to wait for a third test of the 1200 level to rip off the bandaid?

Either way, I'm not fully invested enough. I've had a Don't Buy Don't Sell Policy going on for a while now.

My SBA is less than half the size of my Roth IRA. I haven't done much with my Roth IRA since adding more C to it back in late September. I recently added a small lot in BAC to the SBA at $11.18, where I'm experiencing about a +12.7% paper profit in about two weeks. I need to do more, but I'm not fully convinced!

I shall study the Crown Prince C from afar and see if I should get ready to do the whole few thousand shares thing with C - even above $4. My preference is to wait for a break below $4, but we may not get there depending on this week's data. I'm also going to look for some other opportunities besides C, although from the risk:reward standpoint, it doesn't get much better than this. Yet, I don't want to go all out with C only to have the Crown Prince flop during this year's Santa Clause Rally. Last week, I discovered that it's very possible that real investors are behind the move up in C. If there's very little call and put interest at price levels above $5, then when the move happens, things can get pretty heavy. No one wants to buy, yet no one wants to sell. The options players have basically given up. This is market accumulation happening right before our eyes.

Oooh, almost forgot my report card:

+1.04% on the SBA
-1.02% on the Roth IRA (ouch!)

Friday, November 5, 2010

I Totally Forgot...

... that it was Non-Farm Payday today! But I did benefit tremendously from the trend on trend price action. The US economy added 151,000 jobs, giving my portfolio some more impetus to move a little further north.

Crown Prince C gained another +3.7%, whilst BAC tried to jump towards $13, failing at $12.71. We had much higher volume than normal on both C and BAC, with volume on C closing above 1 billion. I noticed ask sizes were much larger than usual as well, with about $45 million transactions going on occasionally with C. So I did a quick options chains analysis and $4.50 is definitely a zone to watch on C, although I have to say that the amount of open interest above $5 isn't very compelling.

If we break above $5 and stay there, then it can only mean that people with massive amounts of moola are now supporting C. Therefore, I will now take any dip below $4 as a buying opportunity. The 3-year chart on C looks like an L, so when it takes off to the upside, the move will most likely be very fast. This is the part where if you have enough patience and hold onto C for dear life, you could probably see at least a high double digit gain in a very short amount of time. Oh, correct me if I'm wrong, Professors of Finance!

I'm also pondering how and when I should exit BAC. Options chains look much more intriguing on BAC as there is heavy open interest and volume on both the call and put sides. We may very well see $14 very soon. Yippee!

Today's report card was equally yippee:

+1.71% on the SBA
+1.77% on the Roth IRA

Thursday, November 4, 2010

The Beautiful World of ForexDiva...

Today's rally gave my portfolio a much-needed boost and S&P 500 finally broke above the critical 1200 level. I've been ranting about that level for a while and now, we've got to be patient to see if it's here to stay. If yes, then this could be the start of a potential bull flag formation on a 3-year S&P 500 chart - so bears beware.

Finally, I'm getting some price action...

+1.87% on the SBA
+2.71% on the Roth IRA

The most alpha stocks in my portfolio today:

Crown Prince C with +3.34%
Sultan BCS with +4.58%
Knight BAC with +5.30%

I'm not sure if I should be lamenting the fact that I sold CENX the way I did as I did manage to get out of jail free with BAC. I'm going to watch and see if CENX can break above $15 and hold. If it does, I might do a quick play since if $15 holds, $20 is probably not going to be such a far-fetched notion. If I were you, I'd do my own homework and at least run an options chains analysis first...

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Tea Party In the USA

Bernanke set the record straight today with a $600 billion QE2 programme. The market didn't seem to do too much, but my portfolio hasn't had a day like this in a while:

+0.69% on the SBA
+0.68% on the Roth IRA

I looked at some of the biggest winners and biggest losers that I'm following and here's how the scene appears:

ABK +9.55% [housing sector]
FOLGF +7.63% [commodity]
LDK +7.03% [alternative energy]
TGB -24.23% [commodity]
PHHM -12.73% [housing sector]
FNVRF -9.28% [alternative energy]

It would seem that risk is on, but I'm not so sure. What's really happening is the stocks that got sold prior to the announcement got bought back up again and the ones that were overbought got sold again. Commodities, housing sector, and alternative energy were all implicated since politics and policy-making were at the forefront. C got bought up before QE2, but didn't do much today. People were taking some money off the table and then buying back again.

The question is: will there be QE3? I'm sure Wall Street wouldn't be above doing a few week sell-off in order to get Bernanke to pump up the volume on the printing presses again. I'll be looking at the forex market for some confirmation. If I see the JPY pairs going crazy, then it'll be the biggest indication of where the market is really headed.

For now, I'm not too worried about BAC. BAC is no longer a QU risk asset considering that it got sold off so much this year. We managed to touch a new 52WL, but haven't broken below it for good. So just a bit more patience is in order.

But am I buying? No, I'm not buying anymore, but I am riding this till Santa comes along. Oh, Santa... I've been such a good girl this year, so I'd like a happy shiny rally for Christmas...

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Self-Sabotage 101: Forest or the Trees?

Lately, it seems I'm on my way to earning a Masters in Self-Sabotage. Things have really gone down the drain this year. But luckily, I'm starting to get a really good feeling about C once again. It was really, really bid today - as in over 6 million shares on the table in one shot types of transactions. Based on current market prices, that's more than $24 million on the line. Someone's wearing their heart on their sleeve.

Everyone's gearing up for Bernanke's Big Moment tomorrow. Will we get a letdown or will Benny B give us the rally we've been waiting for?

S&P 500 is sooo close to the 1200 level - less than 7 points away. Closing above that would have been too obvious... but are we going to see the upswing tomorrow?

One thing's for sure... the financial sector has got momentum. ABK, for whatever reason, was up +17.72% today. BGCP, who was part of my one-night band some time back was +4.34%. Sadly, BAC doesn't seem to be entirely cooperative and my portfolio consequently lagged the market.

+0.22% on the SBA
+0.55% on the Roth IRA

This can only mean that tomorrow, whatever Bernanke says will have a major impact on my portfolio.

I've been thinking more about the forest or the trees dilemma. When it comes to trading, do we care more about the forest or the trees? If the forest is our entire portfolio and the trees are individual positions, then which do you care more about? Till now, I've been caring more about the trees. However, I deeply feel that in order to be a successful trader, we've actually got to care more about the forest.

It's led me to conjecture... should I be doing some one-touch portfolio rebalancing any time I see a very dramatic increase in my entire account? And if I did that consistently, would I be better off?

Isn't that a very deep, philosophical question indeed?

Monday, November 1, 2010

Accountant Accused Marketer of Being Madoff, Caused Her To Resign

The only thing more ridiculous than a headline like that is a headline like: Madoff Trustee Spent $26.9 million, Recovered $849,000.

The clocks were set back one hour last night in Belgium and I subsequently lost one hour of trading that I would have really enjoyed. But I got to attend the Brian Dolan webinar today, so that more than made up for it. Brian Dolan mentioned that he is the lone voice in thinking there is a possibility that the Fed may not announce the QE2 measures that everyone is anticipating on Wednesday. He showed us some charts and what was most compelling to me is the USD/JPY Daily Chart, which showed an extended, unwavering downtrend. I'm watching this move and if it hits below 75, I'm going to try to catch a falling knife.

Brian Dolan also mentioned that although the official stance of the BOJ is that they will not further intervene in the currency markets, the BOJ is using unofficial agencies to halt JPY strengthening - including the Japanese Postal Something or Other. When Brian Dolan talks about the JPY, one should definitely listen! Actually, when Brian Dolan talks about anything, one should definitely listen!

+0.47% on the SBA
-0.44% on the Roth IRA

The move down on the Roth IRA is much heavier than the move up on the SBA and I've been complaining about the economic performance of my Roth IRA for ages. Therefore, I'm going to have to do some more portfolio rebalancing. I'm paying more attention to BULIF since the LVMH / Hermes rumours are heating up. BULIF has started bouncing and now would be a good time for me to try to sell in favour of my portfolio rebalancing exercise. I'm planning to get into one of my three stocks starting with a B with that moola.

My top secret restaurant stock that I got into back in February is already +50.91%... the problem with this is that the position is too small, so even on a +50.91% move, the monetary value is a bit of a joke. Positioning definitely counts... on a small position, a -50.91% move won't hurt that much. But a +50.91% move on a small amount isn't going to be that pleasing either.

Does anyone think that my investments in Lehman junk bonds and LEHMQ will pay off? I wonder out loud...

And I also wonder out loud... I've now got five courses of action regarding my new job search:

1. look for another job within my industry, which I've already got three new targets for. If I read the signs correctly, these companies have indicated to me on some level that they were interested in poaching me whilst my salary negotiations were going on. Now, let's see if we can take my salary to an ecstatic new level.
2. look for another job on Wall Street! Yes, I'm seriously thinking I can be a success on Wall Street even though my trading doesn't show it. But I can do marketing and with a track record like mine, anyone would be lucky to have me on their team.
3. look for another job in London... oh, wouldn't the GOLs be so lucky?
4. start my own business working within my industry. I'd be able to use very little startup capital as it would be a consulting business.
5. start my own luxury business...

If you ever meet me, you will probably think... how can this little woman who's not even 5'1" be capable of all the stuff that's on my resume? But... it's not about the height, it's about the fight!

Friday, October 29, 2010

When You Know You Deserve An A...

... and you get a B, it really hurts. So I've got some bittersweet symphony going on at work. I got QU promoted with a happy shiny new title, but I decided not to stay on for another year at the +50% salary increase because it didn't fully reflect my trading ego and what I think I'm worth. My estimation is that I'm worth a lot more and now I'm going to find out how much more. I'm staying in Belgium until at least the end of the year. Where will life take me next? Will I find another job? Will I trade for a living? Will I regret I took a life-altering decision based on my QU feelings?

Some of my favourite Professors of Finance gave me a relatively good report card:

+1.36% on the SBA
-0.02% on the Roth IRA

Even on my small account, if I get a +1.36% increase consistently, I won't have to starve. But if I can't respect myself, then what's the point of any of it? It kills me to think that I at one point considered staying at my job after that ridiculous accountant accused me of being legal but unethical for only a +50% salary increase. It would be even more ridiculous to continue after all my previous demotions, so keep me in your prayers when you go in the Confessional Booth, HSFTs...

Don't let anyone tell you you're a B when you're an A...

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

In the Confessional Booth, Volume 271010

This edition of Confessional Booth with ForexDiva isn't going to be as juicy as it usually is. I'm trying not to give myself a hard time with my recent CENX sell. The thing is I got out of the trade due to an emotional situation and not based on any fundamental or technical reasoning. There's now a head and shoulders formation on the 3-month timeframe. The question is will it get back to $10 or $11 again? $11 looks more likely, but it could just as well break to the topside since many head and shoulders patterns fail - at least when it comes to forex. I'm now going to observe this H&S on CENX to see if the prevalence of H&S failures also exists in the equities market. Options chains analysis on CENX also points to the $10 or $11 level as critical levels. So perhaps I shouldn't have to regret that I sold.

But what happened to BAC today? It managed another +2.12% move up. I'm looking for some more opportunities to buy up the highly undervalued financial sector. It all depends on whether I stay in Belgium or not. Yes, I'm still negotiating!

-0.66% on the SBA
+0.32% on the Roth IRA

BAC is now in my SBA. Yet, due to how small that position is, even with the nice move up, it doesn't make a huge difference to the bottom line.

I now realise how much I need to risk and how much I need to potentially make in order to get a good ROI. Once you identify some price levels you're comfortable with, you can basically identify several different stocks trading in that range and just get into one or two positions at precisely the right moment. That gives you a consistent trading system that's slightly less emotional and much more profitable.

For instance, if you like stocks ranging from $10 to $12 and just look at only those price levels and find investment opportunities that match a potential gain of 25 to 50%, you've got a predefined risk:reward profile that's already built into your trading system.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

So This Is Why I Didn't Get Into Columbia...

Why didn't anyone tell me I was misusing the word relentless? I keep saying unrelentless... It's my very own George W. Bush style semi-Republican blunder. Anyway, now I know why I didn't get into Columbia! But did somebody downgrade LEHMQ or something? LOL. It's hitting levels very close to its 52WL now, so since I'm still in that position from March 2010, when I missed out on a very big gain because I got greedy, I'm going to quote unquote average in with a tiny amount of cash in hope of some bigger gains. Let's see how that one works out. I want to be positioned in such a way that I'll be in for some upside when Lehman finally gets out of bankruptcy.

BAC moved up +1.25% today - nothing major... but here's my blah on it.

It doesn't take GWB to see that we closed the day at very critical levels today:

NASDAQ... 2497.29 (obviously very close to 2500)
DJIA... 11169.46 (obviously above 11,100 and holding)
S&P 500... 1185.64 (obviously close to 1200 - the infamous Lehman Level)

So are we going to rip off the bandaid? Or did I buy another top?

Interestingly, I noticed there had been some positive correlation between S&P 500 and BAC on the one year timeframe. However, lately, there has been a disconnect - particularly since September 2010, when the S&P rallied +12.99% with no followthrough on BAC - not even when the CFO bought above $13. So we've got some jet lag going on with BAC which must be corrected. If you study the S&P chart, 1150 was a critical area of resistance, which we just broke through recently. 1150 has to hold in order for more upwards momentum to occur. This is setting up to be another gold-diggin' Andrews Pitchfork it seems. Check this out...

S&P 500 One Year (notice the honeygreen trendline, which would be the median line on the Andrews Pitchfork)

BAC One Year (notice the previous positive correlation and now the negative correlation with S&P 500)

Isn't that beautiful? My portfolio wasn't that beautiful today though. Even though I added BAC, it was still:

-0.76% on the SBA
-0.46% on the Roth IRA

Poor CENX reported third quarter losses of $16.8 million, missing by about $0.23 according to my E*Trade platform. So it turned out to be quote unquote luck that I sold it, although not at the intermediate top. But I want to buy back again and ride this one to $20. I must wait for the right moment... when it's practically screaming "touch my market bottom." It's getting pretty uncomfortable in Extended Hours Trading with CENX... -4.62% already!