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Is technical analysis similar to chicken sexing?

Stock blogger Ivan Hoff has an interesting idea — that the task of chart readers in the stock market is analogous to chicken sexers on a farm. For those not up to speed, the art (or science?) of chicken sexing is to identify female chicks at birth, improving egg yields by not wasting time and […]

Stock market breakout to the upside?

The S&P 500 broke through the recent down trend line this morning, surprising many, including moi, who thought it had reached an overbought resistance point: So is this a breakout or a fakeout? While only time, and the price action, will tell for sure, I took the opportunity to put on a small VIX option […]

Why humans can’t predict the future, the stock market included

I haven’t yet read the book “Future Babble” by Canadian journalist Dan Gardner, but the review by Jesse Singal in the Boston Globe is intriguing, and it looks like it might shoot to the top of my reading list.

Gardner’s thesis is that humans make lousy prediction machines, at least when matched up with the […]

For long term investors, now is a good time to consider Citigroup

Back around New Year’s, I put up the suggestion that if I was going to pick one stock for long – term capital appreciation it would be the much beleagured Citigroup: Now by long-term, I’m talking ten years or more: daytraders beware! But over a decade, C might be a true “ten-bagger,” going up 1000%.

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One year of trading: an audacious goal achieved!

Just one year ago, I started trading publicly on this site with an audacious goal: to see if a small, independent thinking investor (err, speculator), could achieve a 100% profit in a single year.

I started on March 19, 2010 with $10,000 in a TD Ameritrade account. Over the course of the year, I completed […]

One year of trading is in the books!

I just finished my first full year of trading on this site by closing out my April VIX put spread on the March expiration day. At the time I took the spread off (a little after 1 PM EDT), the VIX was about 23.75: I sold my 10 VIX April $25 puts for $3.60, and […]

Its tough to keep Brazil down — BZQ

Among the emerging nations, Brazil’s performance in the recent market swoon has been impressive. It’s almost a textbook example of relative strength. Take a look at BZQ, which is a leveraged ETF that is double short Brazil: So when Brazilian market tank BZQ should go up. Its failure to do so in any meaningful way […]

In a day of stock market turmoil, a bet on calmer waters ahead

The VIX spiked up to 31 at one point today: as the stock markets gave up the remainder of their calendar year 2011 gains: I used this period of turmoil — much of it seemingly rooted in Japan’s nuclear problems following Friday’s earthquake — as the time to switch course yet again, and bet on […]

Did the smart money time the stock market top?

I mentioned back in February that Thompson’s insider buy ratio chart is worth looking at if you are in the game of calling market tops and bottoms. And with 20-20 hindsight it does indeed seem that this chart peaked with the February market top:

Now I don’t think corporate execs really had that much to […]

Good news for the coffee lovers — GMCR

The carnage in Japan’s got you down? Me, too. Not to mention I have to keep nervously watching the VIX, which I need to stay under 25 until Friday, and which is now sitting at 24 and change.

So instead of wallowing, lets take a look at the chart of an old (and sometimes maligned) […]