Thursday, September 17, 2015

Traders Talk: Today's Trades are SPY and UNT [+Trade Video]

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Futures vs FV: SP -2.35; DJ -7.45; NASDAQ flat

Imagine the insanity of the allegedly greatest free markets in the world controlled and dominated by a 1.5-day gathering of a group of unelected economic weathermen. The value of your assets, your job, your retirement, yea verily your life dictated by the gut feel of 12 men and women we know only from their press conferences. For 7 years they have kept rates at 0% or near 0% and printed money, so much so the Congress and other federal branches have not done anything to solve the US' financial issues. Chicken or the egg? Was it the Fed that kept the others from acting or was it the inaction of the government that forced the Fed to act?

The irony is if the free markets were allowed to fix what overregulation and market manipulation caused, we would be out of this and prospering. Not the phone prosperity that the cooked economic headlines trumpet, but true entrepreneurship from the middle class growing to the upper class and growing millions of breadwinner jobs at the same time. The irony is the Fed acts purely on guesswork. It has set markers that it said would trigger rate hikes. Those markers have gone ignored. It said it did not matter what other economies did, that the US was its focus. That has not been the case and if they don't hike will be just another indication the Fed is, as the WSJ put it, just a black box. Economic weathermen.

Instead we all gather round our computer and TV screens as the witching hour of 2:00ET approaches, squinting and straining to get the first indications of what the Fed will do with the rates that impact our entire financial lives. Free markets reduced to genuflecting and begging in front of the Federal Reserve.

Futures are modestly lower heading into the fateful session. After a week of gains traders and investors pause ahead of the afternoon missive. Will the recent rebound survive the Fed's decision? Will the market test the breaks over the August peaks, test lower, or rally on?

As discussed last night, this decision will not live up to its hype. It is not the most important of our lives and its impact will pass quickly and the market will do what it was going to do based upon the current setup. The Fed HAS mattered because of the money printing over the past seven years; this decision is just not going to mean much in comparison.

All the pre-FOMC movement today is not significant for that move. If stocks do rally we will see if there is some gain worth taking or some positions we want to book some on, e.g. October options on say PCLN that has recovered nicely. After the Fed we look for the trend, though that may not appear until Friday or Monday.

The slight majority says no hike though the Fed should hike. Again, it won't matter that much in a day or so or when the market decides the news is nothing. Heck, that may take no time at all depending upon the outcome. What we do know is that the immediate reaction likely has a short half life given the current market setup. Is not hiking going to cure the reasons for the August selloff? Don't think so.

Bonds: 2.28% vs 2.38%

EUR;USD: 1.1328 vs 1.1307

USD/JPY: 120.93 VS 120.46

Oil: 46.55, -0.60

Gold: 1116.30, -2.70

Jobless claims: 264K vs 275K exp vs 275K prior

Housing starts, August: -3%

Permits: +3.5% versus -15.5% July

Futures are continuing their modest losses into the open. Likely a wait and see for the session. We want to use upside if it is significant, and there could be some more covering pre-Fed, but with the rally into the day the move is likely not that grand. After the announcement we use a rally to do what we would do if we had a pre-FOMC rally, i.e. take some off the table if it looks good. Then we see what the counter move is and how strong it is.

Jon Johnson, Chief Market Strategist - IH Alerts
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Today's Trade

Downside Play: SPY (S&P Depository Receipts--$200.18; +1.72; optionable)
After Hours: $200.25
STATUS: Looking at another play on SPY if it rolls over after the FOMC meeting. Low volume move to a higher high, forming an ABCD downside pattern. This is one of those plays held at bay in the event the market flips post-FOMC. May not do it Thursday, but want to have it ready. A move to the target lands a 50%ish gain on the put options.
VIDEO: edia/f/plays/spy/spy.mp4
Volume: 99.582M Avg Volume: 140.125M
BUY POINT: $199.21 Volume=170M Target=$192.17 Stop=$200.69
POSITION: SPY NOV 20 2015 200.00 P - (-45 delta)

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Today's Trade #2:

Upside Play: UNT (Unit Corp.--$12.59; +0.94; optionable): Drilling services
EARNINGS: 11/02/2015
STATUS: Double bottom. As with many energy stocks, UNT is turning off a downtrend, using a three week double bottom to make the move. A lower low the past week was accompanied with a higher bottom in MACD and some great volume. Solid move higher Wednesday, and we are ready to move in as UNT continues higher along with the energy sector in general. Nice setup.
VIDEO: edia/f/plays/unt/unt.mp4
Volume: 1.428M Avg Volume: 1.122M
BUY POINT: $12.67 Volume=1.2M Target=$15.25 Stop=$11.81
POSITION: UNT DEC 18 2015 12.50 C - (58 delta) &/or Stock

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Good Investing!
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