Options Trader: Friday Morning Ideas

by: Philip Davis

Posted by Phil February 14, 2007 at 1:00 pm

"YHOO and GOOG both undervalued. How can you possibly mount a challenge to either one of them? AOL is dead, MSN would need a personality transplant to catch on -- no other true rivals, even internationally... If Google is to ever be seriously challenged, someone must buy or partner with Yahoo, otherwise you are year's behind from the start."

Posted by Phil March 30, 2007 at 1:40 pm

"YHOO -- Take the pretty cheap Jan $35s for $2.35, if they have good earnings you could pick up a buck pretty easy and, if they don't, you can sell against it with 8 months to recover. If Yahoo goes back to $27, me and Carl Icahn are going to buy them anyway... (my Icahn strategy worked with CSTR last month!)"

Posted by Phil April 26, 2007 at 2:01 pm

MSFT YHOO 04 05 2007"YHOO -- can it really get any worse? That's my logic as YHOO is a cheap proxy for a BIDU/GOOG breakout tomorrow or Monday. Picking up YHOO June $30s for .45."

Posted by Phil April 26, 2007 at 5:00 pm

"Now we see if my YHOO as a proxy theory works out. Really this just makes Yahoo management look like idiots with Google Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOG) and Baidu.com Inc. (NASDAQ:BIDU) cleaning their clocks but you can't deny the overall value of Yahoo's property and it's way more than $28.50."

MarketWatch.com May 4th, 2007 at 6:15 AM:

"U.S. stock futures gained Friday as all-important figures on nonfarm payrolls were overshadowed by deal talk, including a report that Microsoft Corp. is planning to launch a takeover bid for Yahoo Inc."

GOOG MSFT 04 05 2007Sometimes I just LOVE the markets! Nothing is better than getting to the right place at the right time and we've been buyers of Yahoo on every dip so congrats to all on this one but it ain't over 'till its over and putting Yahoo in play could cause quite a stir in tech -- just what we need to break the 2,600 mark (how about those QQQQ $46s we picked up on Wednesday!).

Sadly, we have to sell into the initial excitement (ESPECIALLY the Jans) -- but I think we'll reposition for some derivative plays once things calm down. This is a market that has clearly left orbit at this point and any good boost can send it flying up to new levels. As long as we aren't weighed back down by oil

We're going to be ending this week with a bang in techland as everyone looks like they could be in play but Microsoft Corp. (NASDAQ:MSFT)/Yahoo! Inc. (YHOO), if it happens, is a media deal more than a tech one. This rumor comes right on the heels of Rupert Murdoch's offer to buy Dow Jones & Company Inc. (DJ), Time Warner Inc.'s (NYSE:TWX) Dick Parsons' candid admission that private equity is after AOL and now RTRSY (Reuters) seems to have a $15B offer on the table.

It's almost as if it suddenly occurred to someone that content actually matters. As a writer, I couldn't be more happy that people are finally noticing this but I still have my general reservations about the dwindling number of choices presented to consumers of the media. Oh well, the nice thing about living in a Big Brother World is that when Big Brother says the sky is red, there's money to be made betting on the sky being red...

The timing of all these deals is very interesting as poor China and Japan are missing all the fun. That should teach them not to take a vacation. The rest of Asia was in a chipper mood this morning as Quantas mulls an offer and PetroChina (NYSE:PTR) found a Billion tons of oil (7.3B barrels), enough to supply China for 3 full years. It's funny what can happen when you actually explore for oil isn't it? Even worse for poor OPEC, China only imports 2.9Mbd and already produces 3.7Mbd so this may put a bit of a damper on imports over there.

I may have been a week early with my iShares MSCI Japan Index ETF (NYSEARCA:EWJ) call last week but no harm done so far and the Sept $15s at .45 are a nice way to play if we assume Japan has some catching up to do on Monday. This position will be good protection in case our iShares Trust FTSE-Xinhua China 25 Index Fund (NYSEARCA:FXI) caller (who we are rolling today) goes too far into the money.

Europe is perky this morning as well with Altadis getting a $17B bid, the aforementioned Reuters deal, EMI Music says they are in play and even $148B BHP may be a target of private equity players. Calm down people -- we only need $100B A MONTH in M&A to beat last year -- not PER WEEK!

We got a nice low but not too low employment number so the bears have nothing to hide behind today. That means that anything less than a great day will concern me but, other than that, we'll stick with the Diamonds Trust Series 1 ETF (NYSEARCA:DIA) $131 puts we have for protection rather than increase our coverage over the weekend:

US Markets 04 05 2007 Chart

We could gain a little green today from the Transports, the SOX, the Russell (tough one), and the FTSE -- which would be a very bullish sign.

What will it mean to the world now that another 1Mbd of "secure" oil has been found by a non-OPEC nation? We don't like to short oil into the weekend but I've got a lot of good candidates teed up for this afternoon as one more find like PTR's (or the U.S. Congress allowing some more drilling) would offset OPEC's entire production cut.

ZMan was on fire yesterday, giving us the paired trade of the Tesoro Corp. (NYSE:TSO) shorts and the Valero Energy Corp. (NYSE:VLO) longs which paid out on both ends! Last week's featured pick, Petrohawk Energy Corp. (NYSE:HK), is also going gangbusters now that it broke through $15 but I'm still going to go against him and short Chesapeake Energy Corp. (NYSE:CHK) at the open (the $35 puts should do it) as I think investors simply expected better results.

We'll be watching oil at that critical $63 level but with oil down at this resistance level, Nigerian rebels have stepped up their attacks to almost daily to make up for the failure of the Saudi terror plot to boost prices. Rebels this morning took another 21 hostages and released 8 so far (as they were not good poker players) and those 8 will be exchanged for some guys who are willing to ante up and someone who knows how to make nachos.

Have a great weekend -- it's already off to a very good start!

Read all of Phil Davis's articles on Seeking Alpha

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