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Michael Michaud is the founder of ( and the Invest2Success Blog ( He has been investing and trading in the financial markets since 1989. He founded to empower individual institutional... More
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  • Tesla Motors New Model X SUV

    Tesla Model X SUV

    Tesla Electric Cars
    Hybrid Electric Cars and Buying Guide

    First Tesla Model X Buyers Now Picking Colors, 'Ludicrous Mode' By Bloomberg

    'Ludicrous Mode': Is Tesla's Model S Upgrade a Big Deal?

    The first customers who reserved Tesla's Model X all-electric sport utility vehicles have been alerted that, at long last, they can choose their paint color, wheel size and whether they want to drive ludicrously fast.

    The start of configuration is a sign that production is on track. Chief Executive Officer Elon Musk had said that the first to place orders would be able to start individualizing their vehicles "before the end of August" so deliveries can start by the end of September.

    Overnight, the privately run Tesla Motors Club forum lit up with Signature reservation holders sharing screen shots of their configuration dashboards. Tesla confirmed Tuesday morning that Signature holders can begin making choices, such as among nine paint colors, including Signature red, Deep Blue and Titanium. Features like the "Ludicrous Speed Upgrade," is $10,000 extra.

    "This is an important step for Tesla to show its not a one-trick show when it comes to developing a car from start to finish," said Ben Kallo, an analyst with Robert W. Baird & Co. "It will also be great for brand awareness to have two cars on the road. Good to see there will be a ski and bike rack hitch solution as well as sensors to allow the falcon wing doors to open in garages."

    Tesla Model X SUV

    Standard Equipment

    The Model X Signature edition will have a 90 kilowatt-hour battery and a U.S. government-estimated range of 240 miles per charge, Tesla said. The base price for the Signature series -- a limited edition version of the car that hundreds of people have reserved -- is $132,000 before a federal tax credit or any state or local incentives.

    Standard equipment on the all-wheel-drive Model X includes "falcon wing" rear doors with built-in sensors for opening in garages of any height, a rear hitch for bikes or skis, free long-distance travel on Tesla's expanding Supercharger network, parking sensors and blind-spot warning, automatic emergency braking, and power-folding, heated side mirrors.

    The Signature series comes with so-called Autopilot features such as self parking, air suspension, satellite radio, ventilated leather seats with heating and cooling, three independently operable, adult-size second-row seats, and a flat-folding, two-adult third-row seat.

    Challenges building the SUV may also slow production of the Model S sedan, Musk has said, leading the company to reduce its full-year delivery target to as few as 50,000 vehicles from an initial goal of 55,000.

    Tesla Model X SUV

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    Sep 02 8:43 PM | Link | Comment!
  • From Bull To Bear Market In A Week?


    Market Type Suddenly Went to Strong Bear with Normal Volatility By Dr. Van Tharp Investing Trading Education Institute

    This is not my normal monthly update but we rarely change two market types within a five day period. On Wednesday, August 26th, we are in a Strong Bear Normal market type. The market shifted into this type at the close on Monday August 24th after a 3.94% drop in the S&P 500. Over the weekend before, I mentioned on my Facebook page that the market type had moved to bear and that the market could either plunge or just deviate quickly and go back to sideways quiet. Last week Monday made it look like the beginning of a plunge, so far it was inconclusive, and we'll see what we get going forward. Either way, the bears are now playing.

    As of the close last Tuesday, August 25th, the S&P was down 9.64% over the last 100 days. We have had six straight down days and the change over the last six days was -11.17%. Normally when the S&P drops 10%, that's considered bearish, but we did that and more in just five days.

    Volatility has spiked up and it looks like my suggestion to buy the inverse S&P 500 ETF (NYSEARCA:SDS) or volatility (NYSEARCA:VXX) was a good one. Over the last five days, VXX went up 66%. That would have been good protection if your position size was big enough to offset your portfolio decline.

    While I have no idea what will happen going forward (although I'd guess some up days are coming) or over the next few months (I guess the bear could continue), I think the strength of this move should give you a warning. Go to cash or at least hedge your portfolio.

    Whatever you decide to do, think about the following story. Two woodsmen went into a trading post and saw a sign, "$20 bounty for dead bears." These woodsmen knew a forest with lots of bears so they hatched a plan to get some. They went deep into that forest where they set up their tent and slept for the night. The next morning they woke up to a lot of growling sounds. One of the men looks outside and sees 100 ferocious upset grizzly bears. The other woodsman says, "What's happening?" The first guy says, "We are going to be rich!"

    Next week, I'll follow up with the regular monthly market update newsletter.

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    Short Sale Process

    Profiting from Trading Stocks that are Going Down in Price

    What Is Stock Short Selling?

    The selling of a stock equity security that the seller does not own, or any sale that is completed by the delivery of a security borrowed by the seller. Short sellers assume that they will be able to buy the stock at a lower amount than the price at which they sold short.

    Selling a stock short is the opposite of buying a stock long. Short sellers make money if the stock goes down in price. Short selling is an advanced trading strategy with many unique risks and pitfalls. Novice investors are advised to avoid short sales until they are properly educated in doing it.

    Short selling has been around ever since the beginning of the stock market. But many people don't think short selling is good for companies and the market. They think its un-patriotic or damaging to the economic health health of companies and the country they are based in. The reality is that stocks go up and they go down for a multitude of reasons. Fair equal treatment to buy or sell short a stock provides liquidity and the best balance of fair value for the price of the stock.

    People who don't invest or trade the markets at all, blame short sellers for some of the worst company failures in the world's financial markets. Company executives have accused them of driving down their company's stock prices. Governments have before and still do from time to time, temporarily halted short selling to help markets recover and have strengthened laws against some short selling techniques. Some governments have banned short selling completely. Some governments have even gone as far as proposing and implemeting strong legal actions against short sellers. This has happened throughout history in various countries and industries.

    William O'Neil the founder of Investor's Business Daily and the CANSLIM stock investing method, wrote about short selling in his book "How To Make Money Selling Stocks Short", and concluded that "few investors really understand how to buy stocks successfully. Even fewer understand when to sell stocks. Virtually no one, including most professionals, knows how to sell short correctly."

    The fact is that if done proprerly, the risks of short selling are about the same to the risk of buying long stock positions,.

    In the stock options, futures and forex markets buying and selling short is normal practice. Let the free market have its freedom to do what it will. In the long term, all people will benefit much more than letting markets move parabolicly higher creating huge bubbles that end up in price collapses anyway.

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    What Is Bear Market in the Stock Market?

    Trending in the stock market is often referred to as either bullish or bearish. A bull market is a period when stock prices are surging, while in a bear market, stock prices are declining. Investors use a rule of thumb to define bear markets, but a bear is usually pretty obvious to investors who see their investments going down in value.


    The rule of thumb is that the stock market has experienced a bear market if the major stock indexes have declined by 20 percent or more from a recent market high. Stock market historians use the value of the Dow Jones industrial average to calculate whether the market is experiencing a bear market or just a correction, which is a decline of 10 to 20 percent. The Dow is used because the index has been in existence since before 1900, providing a historical picture of bull and bear markets.


    Two types of bear markets can be found when looking at the long-term chart of the stock market. Primary or cyclical bear markets meet the standard definition of a 20 percent drop in the Dow, followed by a recovery from the low. These are shorter-term bear markets as the stock market swings from periods of moving up toward downturns. A secular bear market is a longer, multi-year slump that produces a much larger decline in the value of the market or is a string of bull and bear market cycles in which the end result is a lack of any meaningful gain in the stock market indexes.


    A cyclical bear market occurs on average every few years. The bottom of the 2008-2009 bear market signaled the end of the 33rd 20 percent-or-greater decline in the market since 1900. The end of a bear market is determined when the stock market has moved up by 20 percent off a low, then that low is counted as the end of the bear market. Most market observers count five secular bear markets from 1900 through 2010. A secular bear market will include a series of cyclical bear markets in which the recovery does not reach the previous market high.


    The length and depth of bear markets vary significantly, but some averages give an idea of what the typical bear market might look like. Of the 33 primary bear markets to date, the average length was about eight months, with a range of just a couple of months to almost two years. The average bear market decline was 34 percent, and more than one-third of the historical bear markets dropped by more than 40 percent. The stock market crash of 1929 to 1932 was the biggest decline, with the market losing almost 90 percent of its value. Secular bear markets have averaged five years in length, with an average decline of 54 percent. The longest secular bear market to date took nine years to run its course.

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    Bear Markets Are Inevitable - By Elliott Wave International

    One definition of a bear market is a major stock index decline of 20% or more from a previous peak high. By this common definition, the slide in the Dow Industrials from the peak high of 14,164 (Oct. 9, 2007) through its low of 6,547 (March 9, 2009) was obviously a bear market. The Dow lost 54% during those 17 months.

    Standard & Poor's Corporation provides data on ten other bear markets that fit the definition above (two of the S&P 500 declines are slightly under 20%):

    August 1956-October 1957: -21.6%

    December 1961-June 1962: -28.0%

    February 1966-October 1966: -22.2%

    November 1968-May 1970: -36.1%

    January 1973-October 1974: -48.2%

    September 1976-March 1978: -19.4%

    January 1981-August 1982: -25.8%

    August 1987-December 1987: -33.5%

    July 1990-October 1990: -19.9%

    March 2000-October 2002: -49.1%

    As you can see, this data only goes back to the mid-1950s.

    According to Global Financial Data and MSNBC, the S&P 500 surrendered 29.6% from May 1946 to June 1949. Most people have at least heard of the most famous bear market in U.S. history, when stocks fell 86% from 1929 to 1932. That was also the period of America's second deflationary depression. The first one occurred between 1835 and 1842.

    In the several decades between the two deflationary depressions, America's financial system also experienced a number of shocks, like the Panics of 1873, 1893 and 1907.

    The point is: Bear markets are a conspicuous part of American history. Yet several sentiment measures indicate that most of today's market participants are ignoring this obvious fact.

    And unless human behavior changes and history stops repeating itself, another bear market is inevitable.

    It's only a question of when.

    The Elliott wave model explores that question, and also looks at the extent of market price trends.

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    Sep 01 9:38 AM | Link | Comment!
  • Investing In Cyber-Security Earnings Growth

    With a series of high profile breaches, it has been a very interesting time to be a cyber security company like Cyber Ark Software (NASDAQ:CYBR). This company in particular looks to protect against a variety of breaches, provide risk management, and help to identify threats too.

    Companies like CYBR have moved into the spotlight and have been market darlings for much of 2015 as a result of the many cyber attacks, showing both investors and company managers how important proper cyber security protection is these days. This has translated into solid stock price gains too, as from the start of the year to mid-June, shares of CYBR has soared more than 80% at their highest point, confirming the stock's role as a hot security for investors.

    However, a bit of the wind has gone out of CYBR's sails as of late as shares are down roughly 15% in the past three months. And while part of this can certainly be blamed on the general market downturn, there has also been some general profit taking for the cyber security industry as of late. This could be great news for new investors though, as it could mean that now is the perfect time to get in on this story stock at a relative discount, and especially if you look to recent earnings estimate revisions.

    CYBR Earnings Estimates

    Recent earnings estimates have been moving sharply higher for CYBR in recent session, pushing the estimate higher from $0.35/share for the full year 30 days ago to $0.51/share today. And for the next year, we see a similar trend with the estimate moving from 53 cents per share to 66 cents per share in the same time frame.

    It is also important to note that CYBR has a history of thoroughly crushing earnings estimates as it has a nearly 1,000% average beat over the past four quarters. This includes two beats of over 1,500% so clearly the company is capable of strong performances at earnings season.


    For these reasons, we have assigned CYBR a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy) and are looking for outperformance from the stock in the near term. We only give the top 5% of stocks a Zacks Rank #1, so CYBR is definitely in rare company right now.

    And if that wasn't enough, you should also note that CYBR has a Momentum Style Score of 'A' putting into good company on that front too. Indeed, the EPS estimate momentum is nearly unstoppable for CYBR with a 12.5% increase for this quarter in just the past month, compared to a decline for the industry, making Cyber Ark a stock you do not want to overlook in the space right now.

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    Aug 31 7:54 PM | Link | Comment!
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