All Posts by Jani Ziedins

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About the Author

Jani Ziedins (pronounced Ya-nee) is a full-time investor and financial analyst that has successfully traded stocks and options for nearly three decades. He has an undergraduate engineering degree from the Colorado School of Mines and two graduate business degrees from the University of Colorado Denver. His prior professional experience includes engineering at Fortune 500 companies, small business consulting, and managing investment real estate. He is now fortunate enough to trade full-time from home, affording him the luxury of spending extra time with his wife and two children.

Jun 01

Is TSLA’s breakout the real deal?

By Jani Ziedins | End of Day Analysis

Free After-Hours Analysis: 

It took a while, but TSLA finally broke away from $800 resistance. The stock first returned to this key level in late April but it has been suck drifting mostly sideways ever since.

As I wrote back in April, the first time we rallied to $800 was a great time to lock-in profits following a soilid breakout from $600. We only make money when we sell our best positions and anyone insisting on more than 30% over a couple of few weeks is definitely getting greedy.

The great thing about taking profits proactively is we can always get back in. When the stock held firm near $800 instead of hitting its head and retreating, that told us this was still buyable as long as prices held above $800. There were a few wobbles along the way, but whipsaws are part of this game and only a problem if we get discouraged and give up. The patient investor that stuck to their trading plan was finally rewarded with today’s nice pop. As the saying goes, better late than never.

Maybe this is the breakout we’ve been waiting for. Or maybe it is nothing more than a sympathy pop because Elon’s other company, SpaceX, made history this weekend after it safely launched astronauts into space. Either way, TSLA’s breakout is a good trade to participate in as long as we jumped aboard closer to $800 and have a stop near this level. In fact, those that have profits in this should at the very least move their stops up to their entry point, giving them a (mostly) free trade.

If TSLA’s strength was due to nothing more than a SpaceX sympathy plan, the air will probably come out of TSLA over the next few weeks and prices will retreat back to $800. If we bought right and moved our stops up, no big deal. It was a good trade and totally worth trying. That’s because the other possibility is a follow-on surge of buying that rechallenges $1k resistance. Win and we make money. Lose and we get out at our entry-level. Hard to argue with that risk/reward. While I don’t know if this breakout is the real deal, my trading plan has me covered no matter what happens next.

Looking ahead, if the stock rallies up to $1k over the next few weeks, that’s our chance to do this all over again. Take profits near the next resistance level and wait for prices to dip. If they don’t, then we have to greenlight to buy the next breakout.

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May 29

How much life is left in this rebound?

By Jani Ziedins | Weekly Analysis

Free End of Week Analysis and Lookahead:

The S&P 500 extended its weekly win streak to three out of the last four and finally reclaimed the 200dma for the first time since early March. As much as it feels like the wheels are coming off the global economy, the S&P 500 is completely oblivious and 10% shy of all-time highs. (The Nasdaq is only 4% away.)

As much fun as it was watching the market rally 40% in two months, we need to keep our expectations in check. There is no way we will do another 40%. Even collecting another 10% to get back to all-time highs will be challenging. While this feels like an invincible market, someone always gets left holding the bag. Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not a bear or anything close to that. But I have been doing this long enough to know that we need to be really careful when this feels too easy. By the time this resilience is obvious to everyone, it is getting really late in the game.

Without a doubt, momentum can keep carrying us a little higher, but this is definitely a better place to be locking-in swing-trading profits than chasing prices higher. If we are in this to make money, the only way to do that is by selling our favorite positions. Being proactive usually means selling too early, but if we assume it is impossible to consistently pick tops, that means we either sell too early or we sell too late. I like selling too early because that leaves me in the best position possible to take advantage of the next opportunity. When everyone else is debating whether they should bailout, I’m looking at a buyble the dip.

But that’s just me. You do what’s right for you. As nice as this ride has been, it is probably time to start planning our exit. Whether that means selling proactively on the way up or following the market with a trailing stop and getting out on the way down, it doesn’t matter as long as you pick something. And even better, do a little of both! Take some profits proactively and hold the rest with a trailing stop. But whatever you do, don’t be that guy left holding the bag.

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May 28

Is it finally time to start locking-in profits?

By Jani Ziedins | End of Day Analysis

Free After-Hours Analysis: 

The S&P 500 continued climbing this morning and notched yet another higher-high for this unprecedented rebound. But just as the market was looking invincible, concerns about the long-forgotten Chinese trade war started seeping back to the forefront.

The last two weeks have been a great run as the market ricocheted off the May lows. The index bounced 300-points over a handful of days and as good as that felt, everyone knows this cannot continue indefinitely. Savvy traders buy weakness and sell strength. Now that this resilience is obvious to every Tom, Dick, and Harry, maybe it is time to start taking some profits off the table.

As I wrote yesterday, this is definitely late in the game to be adding new money. And given today’s weak close, it might also be time to start thinking about locking-in some profits too. Maybe that means taking profits proactively. Maybe that means tightening up our training stop. Or even better, a bit of both.

Wednesday’s lows look like a good spot for a trading stop. Fall under that level in early trade tomorrow and we should definitely be moving to a defensive posture. On the other hand, if traders forget about this afternoon’s fizzle and start piling back into the market as they have done countless other times during this rebound, stick around and let those extra profits come to you.

Everyone knows markets move in waves and it’s been a good run. Rather than get greedy or become complacent, start eying the exits. If we get squeezed out by a false alarm, no big deal. Just buy back in when prices resume their uptrend. But if prices fall further, even better, that gives us another opportunity to buy the dip.

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How about avoiding a loss?
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