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.

The Trillion-Dollar Beard

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Let me begin, for those of you not fully acquainted with my background, that I'm an Apple guy. I worked at Apple for years in the late 1980s. Steve Jobs has been my personal hero since 1982, before 99.9% of you even knew his name. I bought my first of many Macintoshes in 1984, the year it was introduced. I bought my first of many iPhones on the day it came out in 2007. Same with the iPad. So I can out-Apple the best of them.

However…………..

There has been a lot of talk lately about how Apple is going to become the first trillion-dollar company in the world and/or its stock is going to go to $1,000 share (triple its current value). Eye-catching headlines, yes, and I suppose anything's possible, but it smells to me like wild-eyed bubble-talk, similar to Facebook's $50,000,000,000 valuation.

It all comes down to this: at the risk of being morbid, Steve Jobs isn't immortal. Not only that, but in spite of his healthy lifestyle, he's not going to make anyone's People Who Will Probably Live Longest list. He's been through a lot.

When the day comes………and it will come………that he either falls ill or leaves of his own accord, it will crash the market. Maybe for just one day, but believe me, people will be talking about the "Jobs Crash", and it will have nothing to do with unemployment.

People have made a fortune off Apple stock over the past decade, and God bless 'em. Apple is a great company with great products, great profits, and a great leader. But nothing lasts forever.

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Long Idea (by Nathaniel Goodwin)

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Throughout late November and most of December, I've been rocking out a massive tour with my band ABL (Christmas time is our busiest season). I haven't been trading much at all in December.

December trading sort of sucks anyways, markets are thin and full of retail chumps like myself and pros who take my money away, so I went on tour instead.

This week I finally started dipping my toe in trading again, but nothing too serious. One stock I picked up was MCK, sort of a nice chart I think. Not hell bent on going long here, be even less so going short right now. I sort of like this chart though.

Mck copy
Last night I came down with a horrible flu (update it's pneumonia), and I think I'm close to death right now. Don't expect much from me in the near future, I also have some sort of ponzi-football pool scheme I got wrapped up into to deal with.

(Captialisa, Sweet princess of forex, good call on short eur and aud the other night)

God bless everyone, I'm about to puke my pancreas out……..

Should You Be Getting Long Volatility Right Now?

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VS Bruins_Jan3_06 The $VIX, or the CBOE Volatility Index measures the market expectations of the near-term volatility conveyed by the S&P500 stock index option prices.  Most investors look to this benchmark when talking about the amount of fear priced into the market.  A more accurate way to describe this however is to say that the $VIX is the price paid for the current volatility in the market.  That price can change based on how aggressive or complacent investors are.

Let me put that another way …. Is AAPL at $334.00 more expensive than SHZ at $10.24?  Well, at first blush it looks that way because the absolute price is much higher.  But the reality is that when you look at each company's near term earnings potential, you will draw a different conclusion.

 

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Following Performers on Slope

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Hopefully most of you know the Performance link in the upper right corner brings up a screen showing all kinds of interesting information about the Trading Ideas posted by Slopers. If you scroll down a bit on the window that appears, you'll see the Top Performing Slopers (in which I'm clinging to 10th place) and those who have posted the Most Ideas

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What's cool about this is that you can follow those folks that seem to be making good picks. By clicking on their profile name, you can either click the Highlight button (which will make their postings show up in boldface on the blog) or, more intrusively, the Follow button (which will cause an email to be sent to you any time the poor soul makes a remark or trading idea on the blog).

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Fun stuff, yes? Anyway, just thought I would point out this feature.

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!