Slope of Hope Blog Posts

This is the heart and soul of the web site. Here we have literally tens of thousands of posts dating back over a decade. These are listed in reverse chronological order. You can also click on any category icon to see posts tagged with that particular category.

After the Fall

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There’s something I’ve noticed on Slope that I find perplexing, a little troubling, and ever-so-slightly amusing. Whenever I write anything that seems to be a prediction, some people get their feathers quite ruffled. Indeed, it seems to kind of piss them off, and they pound their virtual fists on the virtual table and declare that no one can predict anything, and that it’s an arrogant waste of time to even attempt it.

I’m in the business of prediction. Principally, I use historical price charts to try my best to suggest what the future holds. That sort of thing doesn’t seem to bother folks. On the contrary, it’s kept Slope popular, to varying degrees, for nearly fourteen years.

However, when I make, shall we say, textual predictions, some people object. I guess all I can say to that group is………you might as well stop reading the post now, because I wanted to offer up a few speculations about what’s ahead. I am by no means a futurist or an expert in societal trends. By far my biggest “this is what’s coming” success was the 1983 book I wrote, which I’ve mentioned here before, called The World Connection, which predicted our online world with Nostradamus-like accuracy. (more…)

Volatility Ratio Follow Up: How Many Days to a Retracement High?

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I think it’s only natural after a decline like Oct 10-11, 2018 for people to ask themselves a variety of questions.  “Is the bottom in or not?”  “Should I buy now or is it going to roll over again?” and “If it is going to roll over, how far does price bounce before rolling over?”

The question I’m asking today is, “After a decline that coincides with a $VXV:$VIX ratio under .90, how long does it take for a retracement to be put in and price to start rolling over?”

Based on the conclusions of my previous post, the likelihood of another test of the lows in approximately two months time appears to be high, even after a retested low has been put established.  On the path to two months from now, however, we still have to navigate a market day to day.  The paths after the ratio low signal triggered varied so much, it’s hard to really come up with anything consistent and even if there was a pretty clear repeated path, I wouldn’t want to suggest that there weren’t other paths that price could take, even a path that’s never been taken before because anything can happen.  In most cases, the final peak before a decline to at least the first low if not a lower low (or bear trap) took 4-6 weeks to be reached.  In the near-term, however, they all had an initial peak relatively quickly which provided a boundary for a chop zone (trading in a range).  This is what I want to explore. (more…)

Volatility Floor?

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Volatility, which spent so much of 2018 mired in the doldrums, painted out a series of higher lows late in the summer (see trio of green tinted areas). After that third touchpoint, it exploded higher over a hundred percent, only to have the excitement evacuate as swiftly as it appeared. I’ve tinted a horizontal, however, to suggest that perhaps we’re in a new volatility zone. I hope so, at least. Let’s keep an eye on that level to see if it holds, because this chart would suggest bullishness on volatility going forward.

Those Animal Spirits

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In my pre-market, it’s-still-dark-outside post from this morning, I wrote, in part:

Animal spirits still abound, and there’s a certain subset of the “investor” crowd which are simply gamblers that love stuff like IQ and TLRY. Now that cryptos have crapped all over themselves, they are no longer a suitable place for the casino crowd to get their adrenalin rush. So it’s focused on stuff like TLRY which, I assure you, will look like the chart of IQ soon enough.

In case anyone didn’t really buy the notion that the same psychology was driving gambling in crypto and gambling in pot stocks, observe the intraday action today from TLRY:

(more…)

Facebook Earnings: Seminal Market Moment? Or, Sideshow?

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In the beginning, Facebook connected the world. It brought new hope for humanity and individual, human connections. But the dark, underbelly of the Facebook Beast would be revealed in an unprecedented and extraordinarily jarring manner. A soulless serpent would slither in, unnoticed, and disrupt the otherwise innocent processes, effectively co-opting, undermining and exploiting the intended use of the “gift” Facebook had bestowed upon us, for darker, more nefarious purposes.

Hmmm… that sounds vaguely familiar.

Okay, there’s the requisite melodramatic opening scene that effectively outlines and condenses the evolutionary story and subsequent disruption of the Mother of all Social Media platforms. Fast forward to today, and we have an out of control, unmanageable behemoth of a company, whose right hand still doesn’t know what its left hand is doing. Although, to its credit… it’s trying. But it’s too little, too late. Users are dropping like flies in the haze of a media pest spray discharge. And, distrust of the platform in light of its many convoluted tools and rules, is rampant. Suddenly, the household name of Facebook, has become a household scourge.

However, Facebook continues to espouse the virtues and benefits of its life-changing, relationship-forging platform that started it all. Ah, Facebook… the originator of the great Social Medial Experiment. We were the first. Trust us. We’re trying… really. (more…)

What a Difference Six Years Makes

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There was a time, many years ago, that Netflix was this scrawny little small-cap stock of a firm that mailed DVDs to monthly subscribers. I was an early user of Netflix, and I absolutely loved it. (They are based here in the Bay Area). No one dared dream they would have a market cap of over $160 billion, as they do today. If you told someone ten years ago that Netflix would dwarf General Electric in terms of value, they would have laughed you right out of the room.

Although it’s a darling these days, six years ago, Netflix was absolute dog meat. They had introduced a product called Qwikster, which was considered the biggest product debacle since New Coke. By late summer of 2012, the stock had fallen 80%. Now just take a moment and consider that. Try to imagine, say, Amazon falling from 1844 to 377 in the span of a few months. On top of this, it’s not like they were in the throes of an economic meltdown. This was 2012, when the recover and QE fever were all the rage. So NFLX was garbage, and the news media reflected it: (more…)

The Paper Towel Market

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Those of us of a certain age will recall a frequent television commercial for paper towels illustrating how much more absorbent they were than the competition. They were described as “the quicker picker-upper“, and their absorbent qualities would be illustrated thusly:

It occurs to me that this is precisely the kind of market we are in right now. If bad news comes, sure, there might be a day or two of rumbling and hand-wringing, but it all gets absorbed, it all gets digested, and everyone moves on. Recent history has been just another example of this resilience. All the horror about a global trade war seems to have been shrugged off in a matter of three days. (more…)

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