Sunday, May 20, 2012

Recent trades and market prognosis

When JPM reached 44 I bought a number of put options against it. Maybe just because they are some of my favourite people. I noticed also that someone, probably an insider, actually bought 125 May 34's on the same day, for around ten cents each. Obviously that someone had advance notice of the fat tail debacle that came out a few days later. I have also been holding shares of the triple-short ETF TZA and the double short oil ETF DUG, despite having lost quite a bit on them in the past two years. This time its been paying off nicely. I shorted Google on Friday morning, mainly because its a consumer stock and nobody else has been panning it, also because Cramer recommended it. But it fell enough for me to close it out for a nice little gain. I closed most of the shorts on Friday afternoon anticipating the potential for a bounce next week. The past two years, the markets have been rising, and rising, on no real good news whatsoever. Personal incomes overall are declining. The percentage of able-bodied adults who have jobs is continuing to fall, alarmingly. Gasoline and electricity consumption continue to fall, sharply. I can forgive myself for having been short and lost money. It strongly appears, in retrospect, that what has been happening has been a huge inflow of money fleeing European banks ... I have seen estimates of 1.9 trillion or so ....that has had an enormous impact on equities and it has also aided the Fed to keep Treasury notes artificially low. But the winds are changing across Europe. the Germans are having second thoughts about trying to "buy" the entire continent. The populace is starting to actively resist what the mainstream media calls "austerity" but what the citizens call outright theft of all assets by the bankers.. Recent elections put in place people who are more likely to choose default (it has been the only possible outcome for quite a long time now but as I have said before, everybody is naked so no one wants to say so ....). One can already smell the riots, the strikes, the winds of revolution and war, on a continent so accustomed to them.... The US bankers are still trying to deny the implications, that a collapse of the Euro will mean a collapse of the European banking system AND the US banks are holding far too many sovereign bonds derivatives which will go along with it, and the insurance they think they have hedged with is not worth the paper it is printed on. Meaning that when Europe goes, the US goes too. So we got a brief taste of that with Dimon's recent embarrassment, but that is only the tip of the iceberg, and most people in the US are dancing on the deck of the Titanic. Bernanke and the Fed are still stinging from all the criticism about printing money and rising inflation, especially food, gas, and medicine. Operation Twist is ending soon with no concrete plans for new operations. The perennial debt ceiling fight is next up on the agenda and its likely to hit a few weeks sooner than anyone wanted, right in the middle of the final presidential election push. Those will be enough distraction to allow the stock market and the overall economic picture to continue to decline all summer. I have no long positions at all and don't plan on taking any for quite awhile. I expect to continue with potshot shorts. No need to be greedy here, I'm liable to end up being the only one anywhere with any money, anyway. Its just like duck hunting, I don't need the whole flock, just one or two, any will do. Eventually the Fed will bow to the pressure and start printing again, and then I can buy like picking up after a parade .... Meanwhile, my garden continues to thrive. Global warming really makes things very green, and an abundance of carbon dioxide is extremely healthy for plants. This year its gone beyond yuppieville to actually having an impact on my grocery bill. I recently tapped a major major storage of fresh water. I am busy gathering firewood for the winter. I am cutting huge rounds and leaving them in that form, I won't split them until just-in-time because the thieves are too lazy and fat to deal with them in that form. People are so terribly boring and predictable, I am surrounded by grasshoppers singing "Don't worry, be happy!" to me just like the ones in Aesop's fable thousands of years ago .... I continue to lay in supplies for the coming winter, and enjoy having the music in the background while I work ... but all you folks, when it gets cold and you have no food or water, you'd best have some gold when you come to my door begging for help ....

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