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George Acs  

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  • Stop And Take A Break [View article]
    You bring up some very good points and I think all accurate.

    For a few months I've been mentioning in my Daily Market Updates to subscribers that these large gains are typical of deteriorating markets and not recoveries.

    In the article last week I cited Michael Batnick who looked at the past 45 years or so and confirmed that to be the case. My position was based on recollection and experience. I hadn't done the actual work of data mining.

    We are basically taking 5 steps forward for every six steps backward. The erosion just feels less obvious with these illusory rises.

    The skew in the market's rise heading into the correction was also very obvious for quite a while. Yet, with all of those warning signals I haven't been able to move into a more secure cash position.

    As we move in and out of a 10% correction from one day to the next, I wouldn't mind seeing some kind of declaration by the market, in one direction or another, but as you say, there really isn't much to predicate conviction upon.
    Sep 8, 2015. 02:56 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Stop And Take A Break [View article]
    You're right, but I suppose that where you've come from determines what your expectations are going to be.

    In relative terms you can even be happy about taking losses, if it's better than what the next guy suffered, but it still isn't very satisfying in absolute terms.

    0.6% advantage for 13 months of holding isn't the worst thing in the world, but relative to other 1st world problems, it's pretty bad.
    Sep 8, 2015. 11:15 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Stop And Take A Break [View article]
    I don't know of China get take down the world economy, at this point. It's decreasing growth rate has been pretty obvious since the end of their hosting of the Summer Olympics. The real question has been just how much have their official numbers deviated from the truth?

    But while awaiting some clue as to what is really going on over there, the decline has been fairly orderly around the rest of the world and will probably continue being so as no one really has any faith in a near term rebound in China.

    Additionally, most international investors are always looking for the best place to be, so there will always be relative winners. As long as Treasury rates don't rise too much, that relative winner is likely to be US stocks and US stock markets.
    Sep 8, 2015. 10:49 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Stop And Take A Break [View article]
    Yeah, that's always the challenge. Figuring out just how "relatively" good something really is. is really a trial by fire kind of way to go.

    At some point "the new normal" tends to break down and go back to "the old normal," but guessing when that's going to happen leads to the potential for missing out.

    In general, I'd rather miss out. That's why I mentioned needing to find the faith to actually stick my neck out at the moment.

    These large moves higher, such as this morning, really have concerned me for the past couple of months. They tend not to be a good thing as far as when looking back. They tend to characterize a market that is weak and prone to more weakness.
    Sep 8, 2015. 10:27 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Making Sense Of Things [View article]
    Somehow, for qa bunch of kids from The Bronx, I was thinking more of some vintage Rheingold or Schaeffers beer. Maybe we could find dome on eBay.
    Sep 2, 2015. 08:12 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Making Sense Of Things [View article]
    The market had been pretty good at holding SPX at 1945 until it finally gave way last week after that series of lower highs and higher lows that pointed to a breakup or breakdown. Take your pick.

    Now, the next support is down at about 1865 and then 1830 looks like a very brief stopping point en route to 1750, which is just a shy of being in bear territory.

    I don't sell puts on the indices, but if I did, I might consider the 9/11 $186.50 and would be prepared to roll it over if that support doesn't hold. At least there's good liquidity for those trades.
    Sep 1, 2015. 07:04 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Making Sense Of Things [View article]
    I don't think that they require you to attend graduation in order to attend a reunion.

    I just recently went to two because I (we) am (are) getting to the stage of classmates dying.

    Bummer, I think.

    I was pretty ambivalent about going to them, sort of like when you get a Facebook friend request from someone that was long ago forgotten.

    But as opposed to those Facebook requests that I just ignore, I'm glad I went to the reunions. The one this past Saturday was 47 years after 8th grade graduation, so we're already booking venues for 2062.

    Thanks for the nice words. I've written before that I actually enjoy the comments part of all of this because there are lots of familiar people and the comments tend to be pretty constructive.

    I especially like it when people address comments to one another with their ideas and observations.

    I've been trying to make money with stocks for a long enough time to know that so much of what you achieve, good or bad, has to be related to luck - good or bad.

    You can have a really sound thesis and it can all blow up on you in an instant, making you look like an idiot. Just as you can be at the right place at the right time when something unexpected comes along to make you look like a genius.

    The only difference is that no one tries to bury their successes and almost no one will credit good luck for their good fortune.
    Sep 1, 2015. 06:51 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Making Sense Of Things [View article]
    I don't recall the actual ratio, maybe never knew it, but there were a fair number of women in the class.

    I was in the dental school, but we actually spent the entirety of the first 2 years in the medical school and hospitals, so most of your friends were the medical students, particularly since there were about 140 of them and only 17 dental students in the class.

    The reunions are always a joint affair, but they have a small breakout session on the final day to better hit alumni up for their donations.

    The dental school class had 6 female students of those 17.

    In the final 2 years we saw very little of the medical students, depending on what rotations they were doing at the time. When they were on surgery or medicine they rarely got time off and rarely slept and that was when you got to know your dental school classmates.

    So far, I've opened 3 new positions this week: MOS, HPQ yesterday and GE today.

    AS much as I want to grow my cash position I can't resist some of these, especially if they have a dividend at hand and a bigger than accustomed to option premium
    Sep 1, 2015. 12:21 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Making Sense Of Things [View article]
    If volatility stays relatively elevated and some volume returns to the option market, which should happen with any stability at all, you may like rolling over better than being assigned, unless you specifically want to raise cash positions.

    For much of 2008- 2011 I would roll over in the money positions rather than taking assignment routinely. The forward month (and then later weekly) premiums were just so much better than the expiring premiums. That hasn't been the case for a while.

    The best is when you find that you can actually sell deep in the money calls and still get a 1% ROI for a week and the ability to recycle cash.
    Sep 1, 2015. 09:28 AM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Making Sense Of Things [View article]
    I did a 25th high school reunion nearly 20 years ago.

    I went to a specialized math and science high school, so we didn't have too many jocks, and even they were pretty smart. But real justice exerts itself when you see how often nature seems to take a harsher toll on "the cool" kids.

    The funny thing about this reunion with elementary school classmates, none of us had any alcohol with dinner. I thought about that after leaving, realizing that we'd missed that opportunity to have our first "drinks" together, although I suppose it's possible that everyone is in AA.

    We do have another one of these reunions scheduled for 2062, so I'm hoping we'll loosen up a little by then
    Sep 1, 2015. 07:10 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Making Sense Of Things [View article]
    That was a reference to institutional and professional investors. They would almost never say that they were in a significant cash position when the market is doing well or even stable, because then their clients would begin to ask "well, if they're in cash,m why am I paying them?"

    It's only when the ,market has tumbled that they say that they've been in cash. You have to take all of that with a really big grain of salt. You don't hear any of the people seeking media exposure ever say, "yeah, we missed that one. We really had it timed poorly."

    I wish I had a better cash position and have been wishing that for a while, but as you say, those assignments have been more difficult to come by. Fortunately, there are weeks like this one (despite an impending 300 point loss to open the morning), with lots of ex-dividend positions to create that retirement sustaining lifestyle.
    Sep 1, 2015. 07:03 AM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Making Sense Of Things [View article]
    Thanks, but as far as the photo in this article, there was actually a wide age range in the class. There were some who were easily 10 or more years older than others who may have entered straight from college, as I did.
    I also just spent some time this past weekend with some guys I graduated elementary school with, not having seen most of them for the full 47 years since.

    One of them said, "do you see how guys age so much better than women?"

    He obviously didn't get a good look at the group photo we took that night, because it sure wasn't obvious by that.
    Aug 31, 2015. 08:33 PM | Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Making Sense Of Things [View article]
    I think I'm a little to nervous to do that unless I'm right by the computer being able to quickly take back a trade if something happens very quickly.

    I do place trades on a "Good to Close" basis, but if they don't get executed by the close, I always change the Net Debit or Net Credit amount I'm willing to accept to something very unlikely to be triggered, in the event that I'm not there at the opening bell or my attention is diverted.
    Aug 31, 2015. 04:28 PM | 1 Like Like |Link to Comment
  • Making Sense Of Things [View article]
    To this day I still can't make heads or tails out of any constellations other than the dippers. I can never see a bear in what's supposed to be Ursa or anything else.
    Aug 31, 2015. 04:25 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Making Sense Of Things [View article]
    Rose, I cleaned up for the reunion. Shaved the beard and cut the hair, which is generally wavy/curly except when really short.

    On Twitter I frequently change my avatar to reflect the current state of facial hair and hair length. I recently added more flecks of gray, too.

    My wife told me that I would look 10 years younger if I shaved the beard.

    So I did and she looked at me and said "you look about 3 months younger."

    Astrology? You took Astrology?
    Aug 31, 2015. 03:06 PM | 2 Likes Like |Link to Comment