Tuesday, March 6, 2007

Wendesday Curtain Raiser

Well here it is the first week of March and it's going down to Zero Fahrenheit tonight. Whenever the temp drops below 15 outside, this home office with three windows gets chilly even with the heat cranked to 73 so I am wearing a jacket as I write this INdoors. But it will get warmer this weekend, we turn the clocks ahead, etc. Even with the cold air temp to 18 at noon today, the near mid September powered sun felt nice.

It also felt nice to be able to step away from the markets a bit today to take care of some internal blog related items. I've put up a quote tracking application to the right which I hope will be of some use. You can click the tickers to get detailed information. The Dow average will be live once Dow Jones gets my monthly pound of flesh to display automatic quotes on this blog.

Indeed the markets were/are oversold and bounced. It could have started yesterday too, or tomorrow and Fibonacci 50% retracement at S&P 1405 is beckoning the bulls. That's only another 10 points away.

There is however no denying that economic data today was pretty bad: less productivity, skyrocketing labor costs, slower manufacturing, sliding housing; not to mention Alan Greenspan's 1 in 3 recession odds. If the public Green-o-Meter is up to 33.3333%, from a guy used to putting a conservative foot forward in all pronouncements, a frankly spoken Green-o-Meter would really be saying 'recession is quite likely by early next year'. After decades of needing translation, surely you're not believing "one-in-three" really means one-in-three? Seriously, when Greenspan would say to Congress, "the Fed is encouraged by latent indications of economic stimuli..." He really meant - "hot damn, this economy is finally starting to cook and I am da man!". Similarly, when dour, which is what is he best at, this one-in-three thing is a downright gloomy pronouncement.

Will Ben put a contract out on Alan? It's got to be embarrassing for Ben Shalom Bernanke to have to put up with the Maestro and his satellite R-chats. Adding insult to injury, Greeny gets $150,000 a shot pre-tax for the boob tube speeches, while Bernanke is paid $180,000 a year for bearing the weight of the policy making world on his shoulders and will likely be blamed for failing to stop a recession of some sort next year caused in part by the easy money days of ... there's that name again - Alan Greenspan. It's unprecedented that Greenspan is throwing the R-world around like he's passing out cigars at the birth of his first born, while Bernanke and this rest of his policy maker minions are trying to tell us the economy is fine and dandy.

Late yesterday I picked up Lehman March 70 puts and I still have them and bought even more today.

Yen futures up 30 points tonight, S&P futures down 2-1/2, with Nikkei drifting lower.

Wednesday features the release of MBA application data at 7... this stuff is going to be interesting in the weeks ahead now that lending standards are being tightened en masse. ADP employment report comes out at 8:15. Beige Book comes our way at 2; Consumer Credit at 3.


Mike Truong said...

I posted this on yahoo AHM board regarding the release numbers tonight.

Well I looked at the release number tonight. It is as expected for an alt-a pay option arms player. The part that would make me worry is the high number of high LTV pay option arms. The 80+ LTV is about 20~25% of total loan volume. These should scare any long going into the housing bust as those are the riskiest. As for the weighted FICO being high, the explanation is fairly simple. In order to qualified for such high LTV, the fico must be at the minimum of 720+. A 720+ is good at paying his bills but if things become dire , sickness, layoff, divorce etc...that high LTV pay option arm just became an albatross as it is nearly impossible to refinance or sell out of such mortgage without incurring a loss. I hold a small put position so if I get squeeze out it is ok. I made enough this week on NEW. Just want to let people see it without the blinders of longs or shorts.

GL to you all,


jeff p said...

are you bailing on your leh puts?

Jim K said...

no way. and if they die because I was too early, i will buy the Aprils. I may even buy more of the March 70's this week. I think next week going into expiration is going to be interesting for the markets... quadrupling withching week with alot of bad baggage. I may end up having to hold those March's right to expiration. Don't do this unless you are prepared to loss it all.

jeff p said...

actually i played it a little safer with the april's anyway

Lawrence said...

The LEH march puts are getting hammered today. With all the bad economic news out this week regarding factory orders, that housing comment from DR-H, Greenspan's "recession likely", bad retail sales, are the rest of the market not reading the same newspapers that I read?