Gold, bitcoin loving the sturm und drang of markets

Before you could figure out how the market would react this morning to flat retail sales for the holiday quarter, Dow futures were up bigly on Wednesday.

Then before you could look up the definition of inflation this morning, the market was down “bigerly” on the Consumer Price Index report. Continue reading

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Stocks, bitcoin moving higher as volatility is quelled

Please excuse the sporadic posting, still in great pain as a result of my spinal surgery.

Stock markets around the world are back to rally mode with the exception of Japan.

The Olympic euphoria has even creeped into the cryptos with bitcoin up 10% for the day. Continue reading

Dow volatility may soon rival bitcoin’s price moves

SPECIAL SATURDAY POSTING

What the hell is going on in the stock market this week?

The Dow Jones index had a 1,000 point or 3% ride on Friday before settling up 330 points up 1.4%. over the course of the 5 days of trading there was a 6% range from highs to lows. Continue reading

Plunge Protection Team leaving fingerprints on Tuesday’s market moves

There’s something rotten in the markets

On Tuesday morning the Dow futures was down 540 points just before the opening of trading. By 10:30 am the Dow index was miraculously down 3 points.

Over the course of the trading day the Dow moved 1,167. That type of volatility you only see on bitcoin. The index closed up 567 points, but the strange indicator on the Street was that the e-mini futures for the Dow were +920 at the close. These two numbers are normally in the same range and not 360 point difference.

Wednesday morning saw the e-mini futures down 250 points at 6 AM and improve to -86 points at 7:30 AM.

However, looking at the markets — including dollar strength, precious metals and bitcoin — it looks like there is much forced selling by funds that have to liquidate assets before announcing the fund is closing.

I wrote yesterday about the VIX index, which for much of the Trump presidency hovered around 10 suddenly exploded to over 50 on Friday.

I still believe the trigger for Friday’s 666 point decline was the release of the FISA memo by the House of Representatives committee. The idea of corruption and felonious behavior at the top of the Obama Administration  was hinted by all the congressmen who had read the memo.

So once the VIX started to rise on Friday, the funds that we caught short on the VIX had to liquidate other assets to cover the options contract. This selling cascade poured into Monday’s trading.

As I wrote yesterday, there were forces in the stock market futures to bolster Tuesday’s market open after Monday closed down over 1,000 points. My colleague John Crudele and I both see the Plunge Protection Team had a hand in bolstering Tuesday’s open.

 

Tim Cook’s “New Coke” quarterly results will poison Apple

I remember writing here back in May of last year about how Apple had lost its way when reports came out that it would offer a $1,000 iPhone.

Apple may have lost touch with the retail market. Sure Apple may be able to sell a $1,000 phone set to the rich and famous, but there are no large-scale buyers out there for a $1,000 unsubsidized model.

That was back in May, before Tim Cook announced that there would be two iPhone models being offered to customers for the holidays.

I wrote at the time: What is wrong with Apple? How do you cannibalize your leading sales product by offering two models? You are not a car company.

I believe Cook’s  decision to have two models go head-to-head in the company’s most important sales quarter will go into college marketing programs as the biggest blunder since New Coke.

Well we find out after the close of markets Thursday just how bad that decision was as Apple reports quarterly earnings. Remembering of course that most of Apple’s shares are held by hedge funds and other large institutional investors, so the churn out of the stock will be muted.

The company has been the largest market cap company in the US for two years, but it could relinquish that title Thursday back to Alphabet (Google), which also reports after the close.

Going into today’s trading the market caps of the two tech firms are separated by less than $35 billion, $851.7 billion for Apple and $817.1 billion for Alphabet.