Slope of Hope Blog Posts

Slope initially began as a blog, so this is where most of the website’s content resides. Here we have tens of thousands of posts dating back over a decade. These are listed in reverse chronological order. Click on any category icon below to see posts tagged with that particular subject, or click on a word in the category cloud on the right side of the screen for more specific choices.

Veruca Salt

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Today I was interviewed by a major financial news publication to get my views on the market. The person doing the interview is a respected, widely-read analyst himself, and he told me he was getting a ton of hate mail and other nastygrams in various forms, since he – like me – has been relatively bearish this summer.

Let me be clear that this weekend allowed me to clear my mind about the markets. I am quite done apologizing for missing the March-August move, so I'm going to smack anyone who gritches about it again. My post on Friday afternoon was all the contrition that is due, and I am now moving on with my life.

There is one individual, however, to whom I will grant Wonder Twin Privileges – – Salt. He is the only individual who I know went mega-bullish at precisely the bottom and hasn't changed his stance. His call was superb. On March 6th, he wrote here on Slope:

Just for the record, I am hoping for a nice pull back in the morning, I
have decided to go as LONG as I have ever been, with options anyway! I
will be buying Sept., Oct., CALLS on DDM , SSO, DIA, SPY, etc. way out
of the money, (cheap), about $40,000+ in these as I expect DOW 13000
and SP 1300 before year end. I will also buy GDX calls, Sept @50
strike, and Jan 2010 @ 65 Strike, about $40,000+ here also. I expect
GDX to hit 90 before the end of the year. When this plays out, I will
be looking at about 2000%+ gains in about six+ months. That I can be
happy with. Then I can just sit back and do nothing for six months.
Good luck to you all!  Sentiment is at historic lows! Insider buying is at historic highs! Enough said.

As for everyone else who wants to either claim they rode the rally or, more commonly, just want to bitch that this blog didn't ride it all the way up – – -  stick a cork in it. Because Salt is the only one who stepped up at the right time, made his declaration, and was specific. (The fact is, however, that Salt is too much of a mensch to take me up on this privilege).

And, with that, I leave you with this:

Everything’s Coming Up Roses

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As regular readers know, I'm counting on a countertrend top between 1050 and 1200 on the S&P, and we're within spitting distance of it. Today's high was barely 1% underneath 1050. I maintain my belief that this is nothing more than a countertrend rally unless (God forbid) we were to cross above 1200.

The folks over at Elliott Wave provided a very interesting graph on sentiment today:


Not to put too fine a point on it (.…..say I'm the only bee in your bonnet…….), investors are now even more doe-eyed optimistic about the prospects for equities than they were when the S&P peaked at 1576! All this crap about tons of cash on the sidelines and people waiting to pile into the market is just that: a load of crap. They're already in! And they're expecting things to keep soaring! (Just like, ummm, in October 2007).

The "cash on the sidelines" thing drives me nuts. The "cash" was destroyed in the 58% decline – remember? The notion that people:

  1. Sold at the top
  2. Tucked their "cash" away somewhere really, really safe
  3. Now have all that cash at-the-ready to buy stocks

is….…that's right!….……..utter crap.

It's lovely that today was a good day for me, but I've been through the past five months and know it doesn't mean squat. You know the last time we had a good, solid down week? June! So it pays to take it one day at a time and assume Goldman is just playing games with us all until things start to seriously, seriously crack.

And, I assure you, ladies and gentleman, that is a day to which I eagerly look forward.

One Day Does Not a Trend Make

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There's a lot of good-natured ribbing and joking here on Slope since we didn't get eye-gouged again today. The funny thing is that the Dow actually did make yet another 2009 high, but it sure doesn't feel like it! The cool part for me is that the Dow and $XOI are both up, yet my portfolio (almost entirely bearish) is up 1.11% on the day. I really like that kind of relative performance!

But our one-day reprieve doesn't mean much. Last Monday was proof of that. I was pretty excited a week ago, and the next four days were just hell on earth. So I've learned to be cautious, to the point of paranoid.

As I've mentioned several times today, I bought a six-figure position in FAZ very early in the day based on little more than the "stewardess comment." (Thanks, Tom!) It was my biggest dollar and percentage gainer among 100 positions. I also notice the volume came within a hair's breadth of the all time record high (it was 99.3% of its prior record volume; so close!)


I'll think of something else to say later. I'm going to take a break.