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.

A Nostalgic Look at Happier Times

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I am at my most creative and content when things are going my way. Because of that, late 2008 and early 2009 were met with an outpouring of writing and videos from yours truly, including the gem below, which I had almost forgotten about. How I miss those days when the only happy people on the planet were me and my fellow Slopers. May God see that we can enjoy such a world again.

If you haven't seen it, watch the video. You will be overcome with wistful yearnings.


Oil’s Explosive Move – Chart by Mike Paulenoff

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Crude oil's upside pivot reversal off of last week's low at $83.85 has morphed into a powerful spike that has climbed above the prior high of $92.84 to a new, post-Dec 2008 high at $99.94 today.

The explosive upmove has blown through key resistance at $90.15 — the 50% resistance plateau of the huge $114.87/bbl bear market from July 2007 to Dec 2008. It has hurdled key multi-week resistance at $92.30/90 into what looks like a vicious new upleg that could be heading for a confrontation with the upper channel resistance line, now up near $110.50 to $113.00.

At this juncture, only a major downside reversal that breaks and sustains beneath $92.00 will begin to compromise the developing vertical surge in oil prices.

Originally published on

Quantitative Easing And The Treasury Market (by Ultra Trading)

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The slide in treasuries continues again and it is clear the Fed has lost any control of the entire curve beyond a one year maturity.   Equity markets are at a very critical juncture right now with QE2 expected to end in June.  The reality is equity markets may very well begin pricing the end of QE in the near future, if you consider the Jackson Hole speech hinted at QE2 in August and saw equities price in the policy three months ahead of the November 2010 meeting.  

There is no shortage of people calling for endless QE (easily 80% of those voices truly don't even understand QE).  The environment now though has changed making the options to Fed monetary policy more limited. Probably the biggest headwind facing the Fed is rising interest rates.  The federal funds rate is at 0-25 bp and QE was intended to push down rates further out on the curve and it did work for a while.  The Fed conditioned all of us for low rates with their continual use of "extended period" with each FOMC statement.

The Fed needs to be careful moving forward.  The bond market has clearly signaled they are concerned about inflation, loss of confidence in the Fed and US fiscal policy.  The US is competing with other sovereign nations for capital at the same time they are increasing their supply with growing deficits. Imagine a shock even to the US economy.  The US is in no position to use emergency stimulus without risk of truly blowing out yields.

Two Year Treasury 

After catching a little bid last week the two year has given up all its gains and looks to test the lows again. The shorter end of the curve had stayed relatively low in yield but has risen more than any other maturity recently causing a bear flattening (higher rates and a flatter curve).  Not favorable for banks or those on the wrong side of interest rate swaps (which is a $458 trillion market).



Ten Year Treasury 

Has bounced along a multi year trend line after failing last week.  Looks like it too is set up for failure. This is not good for housing which is already under pressure and double dipping.  A 100 bp rise in 10 year yield equates to about an 11% drop in home prices.


Submitted by Ultra Trading.  If you would like to read more, please visit - Ultra Trading