Category Archives for "End of Day Analysis"

Feb 12

Is it finally safe to buy NFLX?

By Jani Ziedins | End of Day Analysis

Free After-Hours Analysis

Is it finally safe to buy NFLX?

Short answer:
Ummmm……No……..

Long answer:
If anyone finds themself asking this question, where have you been the last four months???

Without a doubt, NFLX looks good right now and is finally climbing out of the hole it put itself in last summer. But if a person is only noticing this now, they are a day late and a dollar short……or make that five months and $120 short.

NFLX disappointed investors last summer when its quarterly earnings report fell flat, triggering a long and bloody slide that shaved more than 25% off the stock.  But as is often the case, the market overreacted. After two months of relentless selling, long-time bulls finally reached their breaking point last September and unloaded the stock in the biggest three-day selloff since the initial earnings disappointment.

But rather than signal the start of the next leg lower, that frenzied selling represented the capitulation bottom. This is when things finally got “so bad they were good”. And that is exactly what I told subscribers when it happened.

As bad as NFLX looked back then, we should never lose sight of the fact risk is a function of height. The lower a stock falls, the less room it has left to fall. While we cannot use this logic on dying companies and obsolete industries, it works really well when we believe in the underlying fundamentals.

A person with a lot of courage and a sensible stop just under the lows could have bought NFLX last September when everyone else was selling it. The first good sign was when prices refused to undercut the lows and bounced. That was our signal to add more to our initial position. Then, a few weeks later, the company announced earnings in October. But rather than fear another earnings disappointment, savvy investors knew the latest selloff lowered expectations so much that this time around the bar would be far easier to clear. And as expected, the stock popped following earnings.

Unfortunately, nothing is ever easy in the market and regretful owners who bought at much higher prices used that post-earnings strength to finally get out. But as is usually the case, the crowd gets it wrong and that happened again here. Rather than fear another tumble lower, opportunistic investors should have been buying the stock. The worst was already behind it and sentiment had finally turned. From that point on, NFLX has done nothing but climb and today it is within a few points of making all-time highs.

Those that had the courage to go against the crowd are counting their profits. Those that listened to the herd are left wondering what happened. While I still like NFLX at these levels, buying now is definitely late in the game. While the stock will almost certainly continue higher, the easy money is long gone.

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Tags: S&P 500 Nasdaq $SPY $SPX $QQQ $IWM $NFLX

Feb 11

Is AMZN the next TSLA?

By Jani Ziedins | End of Day Analysis

Free After-Hours Analysis:

By now everyone is familiar with the wild ride TSLA took investors on and without a doubt, that story is far from over, but I will save that analysis for another day.  Today I want to write about AMZN and the hints of similarity its recent price action has with TSLA’s explosive move.

AMZN reported better than expected earnings two weeks ago and the stock popped 10% the next morning. That opening surge put the stock back near all-time highs and it spent a few days consolidating those gains. The initial risk was a conventional retreat that closes the gap, as is typical following big moves. But AMZN bulls are a stubborn bunch and resisted the temptation to take profits. Instead, after a few days, the stock started climbing again. And more than just climb, the last three sessions it started racing higher.

While AMZN has been on my radar for a long time and I told subscriber before earnings that a strong result would push the stock into record territory, this sharp acceleration the last few days really stands out. While I would be suspicious of something like this during more normal times, that buying frenzy in TSLA shows just how extreme buyers are willing to take things.

Now, I need to preface this by saying this is still a remote possibility and I am not predicting this is what will happen. I am simply saying this could happen. And if it does happen, we need to remember AMZN is 10x the size of TSLA and there is no way AMZN can climb 50% in two days. That said, AMZN stock owners are nearly as “cultish” as TSLA owners and this type of fanatical ownership group can lead to some extreme moves. Could we be on the verge of one of these extreme moves? This is really starting to feel like it.

First, there is no way I would want to be short AMZN at these levels. Without a doubt, a lot of TSLA’s lift came at the expense of short-sellers getting squeezed out at steep losses. And we could see a similar phenomenon in AMZN. If you are short AMZN, do something to protect yourself. If you are contemplating shorting AMZN don’t!

Second, if someone wants to get on this ride, remember, this is an extremely risky and low probability trade so adjust your position size accordingly. Start small and only add after it starts working. And not only that, keep a hard stop loss. Probably starting with something near $2050 and then move your stop up as the stock climbs.

And third, this is a quick trade. If this takes off, please don’t fall in love with it. Take profits quickly and don’t feel bad if you sell too early. People who ride these moves all the way to the top inevitably ride them all the way back down. Don’t be that guy.

How high could this go? I have no idea. But if a person has a huge appetite for risk, this could be an entertaining ride. Just be sure to keep your head screwed on tight and don’t fall for the hype if it works out.

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Tags: S&P 500 Nasdaq $SPY $SPX $QQQ $IWM $AMZN $TSLA

Feb 07

Is there such a thing as “too good”?

By Jani Ziedins | End of Day Analysis

Free After-Hours Analysis: 

The monthly employment report came in better than expected. In fact, the market actually thought it was a little “too good” and the S&P 500 dipped on the news. Traders are not rooting against the US economy but they are leery an overheating economy will pressure the Fed to back away from its accommodative monetary policy.

While people have feared “too good” for years, good news hasn’t held stocks back in more than half a decade. But old habits die hard and people keep reflexively selling good news because they think maybe this is the one that finally breaks this bull. Yeah, I don’t think so. This logic didn’t work last time and there is a good chance it won’t work here either.

Investors are also a little skittish about potential Coronavirus headlines over the weekend. Two weeks ago the market was hammered Monday morning and there is still a little “better safe than sorry” thinking going around the market ahead of this weekend.

But the thing about selling ahead of time is it actually reduces the risk of holding through the weekend. The more stocks go down now, the less room they have to fall Monday morning. This isn’t to say we cannot open even lower, but today’s 20-point decline took some sting out of any headlines that might crop up this weekend. And if nothing bad happens, expect those 20-points to come racing back Monday morning. We fear a market that is oblivious to the risks, not one that is preparing for them.

So far the market is acting really well and anyone who bought last Friday’s dip or this Monday’s bounce is sitting on nice profits. Move your stops up and start reviewing your plan to take profits. When the crowd finally starts thinking it is safe to start buying again is when we want to be selling.

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Tags: S&P 500 Nasdaq $SPY $SPX $QQQ $IWM

Feb 04

The right way to buy this rebound

By Jani Ziedins | End of Day Analysis

Free After-Hours Analysis:

The following is a brief excerpt from the Premium Analysis email I delivered to subscribers today during trading hours and builds on Friday’s free post. Since this covers exactly what I wanted to write about this evening, why recreate the wheel? If you like what you see, have this and more delivered to your inbox every day during trading hours while there is still time to act on these insights.

The S&P 500 popped this morning and is inched toward 2% gains. What was the source of this strength? Well, if we go strictly by the biggest headlines, it is the ever-expanding Coronavirus epidemic and the voting mishap in Iowa. Those seem like strange headlines to rally on but that is exactly what we got.

Obviously the market isn’t rallying because of those headlines. But more importantly, we can say the market is rallying despite those headlines. Traders are shrugging off news that very easily could have sent us tumbling under the lows again. Instead, most people are choosing to ignore the noise and are buying stocks anyway. The encouraging sign is there are few things more bullish than a market that refuses to go down on bad news.

Granted, this is only the second day of this rebound attempt and it is definitely premature to claim the selloff is dead, but this is definitely a good start. If this market was fragile and vulnerable, today’s headlines were definitely bearish enough to send us lower. Instead, prices bounced and that tells us this market wants to go higher, not lower.

The market looks great, unfortunately, anyone who waited for the clouds to clear missed a lot of this week’s discounts. And more than just paying higher prices, these gains expose late buyers to the increased risk of an intermediate dip. The best buys always come when uncertainty is at its highest. Throwing some money at the market Friday afternoon and yesterday morning was tough, but those smart buys gave us 1) good entry points, 2) the safety of nearby stop-losses, and 3) a fair amount of profit cushion to ride out any near-term undulations.

As always, the best plan is to start small and add to a position only after it starts working. A small buy on Friday afternoon was followed up by another position Monday morning. Do that and we are in good shape to add a little more today. The challenge with today’s purchase is the sensible stop-loss is all the way back at yesterday’s close. Not ideal, but we have to take what the market gives us. At least the prior profits give us some padding to cushion against any near-term gyrations.

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Tags: S&P 500 Nasdaq $SPY $SPX $QQQ $IWM

Feb 03

Why TSLA is going to be like TSLA

By Jani Ziedins | End of Day Analysis

Free After-Hours Analysis:

Normally I like to mix the subject of these free posts up a bit, but TSLA keeps dominating the headlines and it is hard to ignore what is going on over there.

Shares exploded 20% today and you’d think the company made a huge breakthrough. Nope. An anonymous analysist upgraded the stock. While an upgrade is definitely better than a downgrade, the thing to remember about analysts is if they knew how to trade, they wouldn’t be an analysists. Think about that the next time you feel the urge to trade based on their opinions.

As for my opinions, I got a fair amount of criticism for my post last week when I said people need to be careful chasing TSLA at these levels. While I’m sure my critics are strutting around today, this pop doesn’t change anything. This is an incredibly dangerous place to be buying the stock and I have no doubt it will end in tears for many people.

I’ve been doing this a long time and could cite countless examples from WMT, MSFT, PALM, AOL, BB, Oil, Gold, Bitcoin, or any of the thousand other investments that made explosive moves. But if I did, no doubt my critics would complain that TSLA is different. Okay fine, I can work around that. Let’s compare TSLA to TSLA.

TSLA came public in 2010 at $17 and obviously it’s been a great ride since then. But it hasn’t been all up. In fact, there has been a whole lot of down along the way. Everyone knows the market moves in waves, but somehow they always forget that basic fact when the market is at the top and the bottom of a wave.

Last year people were writing TSLA’s obituary. Now we have other people claiming it will take over the world. Who is right? Easy, neither! Don’t fall for this extreme thinking. In fact, when the extremists take control of the conversations is when we need to be the most afraid.

In the attached chart, you see the five different occasions TSLA stock fell nearly 40% and on three of those, the losses exceeded 50%. Owning a stock that’s tripled over the last few months is great, but don’t mistake serendipity for skill. Remember, if we are in this to make money, the only way we do that is by selling our favorite stocks. While the fools are spending all of their time daydreaming about what they will buy when the stock breaks $1,200, smart money is selling their stock to those greedy dreamers.

As I said in my last post:

Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not calling today a top and I most definitely wouldn’t short something just because it is “too high”. But I do know for certain at some point soon this stock is going to come crashing back to earth and anyone who is patient will be able to buy all the TSLA they want at lower prices.

That is even more true today than it was last week. But feel free to ignore me because without a doubt “this time is different”.

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Tags: S&P 500 Nasdaq $SPY $SPX $QQQ $TSLA

Jan 31

How to trade days like this

By Jani Ziedins | End of Day Analysis

Free After-Hours Analysis

The following is a brief excerpt from today’s premium analysis that I emailed to subscribers at lunchtime today. This does a good job of explaining how we should respond during sessions like this.

Market Mentor

We always knew this retreat could happen and it shouldn’t surprise us. I liked the mid-week resilience, but that was no guarantee this situation was resolved. But as long as we included this possibility in our trading plan, it won’t catch us off guard and we will respond to it intelligently.

This intelligent and thoughtful response is miles away from the way most people have been trading this situation. Rather than buy early in the rebound when they could keep a sensible stop close to their entry point, they waited until it looked like things were safe and jumped in at much higher levels. Now the market tumbled under their entry points and their positions are in the red. What felt safe at the time turned out to be anything but.  Now many of those same late-buyers are having second thoughts and dumping their stocks for a loss today.

While today’s retreat proves my initial purchase wrong, having a sensible purchase point [near Monday’s lows], appropriate position size [1/3 position], and nearby stop-loss [under Monday’s lows] means any resulting losses will be trivial.

Today’s lows undercut my stops, meaning I’m not out of the market. But rather than give up, I’m already looking for the next opportunity to get in. If today’s weakness proves to be fleeting and is a false alarm, I’ll buy back in and try again. While these whipsaws can be frustrating, the protection against bigger losses while still maintaining the opportunity to profit from the rebound is more than worth it. As long as we are smart about our entries and stops, we won’t lose much from these swings and will be ready to profit from the inevitable rebound.

(All of that said, if the market has an absolutely horrid close this afternoon, I might be tempted to buy a small position just before the close. The lower we go now, the less room we have to fall on Monday, so any selling today actually reduces the risk of holding over the weekend. This definitely counts as trying to catch a falling knife, but if we do it with a reasonable position size, it can be more entertaining than dangerous.)

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Tags: S&P 500 Nasdaq $SPY $SPX $QQQ $IWM

Jan 30

The self-fulfilling prophecy TSLA cannot escape

By Jani Ziedins | End of Day Analysis

Free After-Hours Analysis:

Traders are GooGoo-GaaGaa for TSLA’s latest earnings report, sending the stock surging 10% today. The company blew away expectations by actually making money last quarter! Adding those profits to the previous three quarters and the company only lost $862,000,000 last year. What a relief!

All sarcasm aside, we need to be realistic about both the company and the stock. Traders love this stock and the share price doubled since the third quarter’s earnings report last October. That’s one hell of a performance and no matter what a person believes about TSLA’s future prospects, there is only one way to trade a move like that. Unfortunately, bears cannot help themselves and countless cynics have been absolutely demolished by this strong move higher.

But now I feel the tide is about to turn. These late buyers are going to be the next ones in trouble. The first thing to remember is institutional money managers control the bulk of all money in the stock market. What they say goes no matter what anyone else believes. The challenge going forward for TSLA is institutional managers are a cautious bunch. They’ve been around long enough to know these explosive surges higher never last. Even if they love the company, they won’t chase a move like this. Instead, they wait for the inevitable pullback from these frenetic levels.

What happens next is a bit of a self-fulfilling prophecy. The majority of big money managers avoid what they think is an unsustainable move. And when enough of them do that, eventually the retail investors run out of money and bears finish covering their shorts. Once that happens, supply dries up and prices tumble.

The above most definitely isn’t a judgment on the company’s financials or growth prospects, but more a look at the supply and demand cycle that is behind every hot stock. Big money fears heights and they won’t embrace this move until prices cool off. Without their deep pockets, this sharp rally will not stick.

Smart money is taking profits at these levels, not chasing prices recklessly higher. Only fools are buying TSLA above $600 and the thing to remember about fools is they don’t have a lot of money. Expect this stock to cool off very soon. Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not calling today a top and I most definitely wouldn’t short something just because it is “too high”. But I do know for certain at some point soon this stock is going to come crashing back to earth and anyone who is patient will be able to buy all the TSLA they want at lower prices. At the very least, we should expect prices to return to the $500s and even a dip into the $400s is highly likely. I would feel much better buying the company at those levels after this frenzy cooled off.

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Tags: S&P 500 Nasdaq $SPY $SPX $QQQ $IWM $TSLA

Jan 28

The best way to buy this dip

By Jani Ziedins | End of Day Analysis

Free After-Hours Analysis:

The S&P 500 recovered a big chunk of Monday’s losses as fears of a runaway Coronavirus epidemic receed. That said, there were not any concrete headlines supporting this change in outlook, just a wave of dip buyers jumping in and hoping for the best.

The bigger question is if this rebound is the real deal or just another sucker’s rally on our way lower. I wish I could tell you the answer, but predicting the whims of an emotional market is one of the most challenging things to do in the market. But just because we don’t know what the market will do doesn’t mean we cannot trade these swings intelligently.

If a person took profits proactively when the market broke above 3,300 or alternately, used a trailing stops to lock-in profits at this level, they should have cash available to take advantage of this dip. If we don’t know when and where this market is going to bottom, our plan needs to tell us when to act.  Obviously we don’t want to catch a falling knife, so that means waiting for a bounce. But how do when know when the market is really bouncing? Unfortunately, we don’t. That means our plan also needs to include contingencies for being wrong.

While Monday’s gap lower open was dreadful, prices bounced off those early lows minutes after the open. That is considered a bounce and is a great entry point. The biggest advantage is the early lows give us a definitive and close stop-loss level. Buy the bounce and hold on as long as prices remain above the opening lows. Easy enough.

This morning’s bounce also gave us a good entry point. Not quite as nice as yesterday, but we buy the early bounce and keep a stop at yesterday’s close. This entry is less attractive because we are buying at higher levels and the stop is a little further away, but it is still a decent entry with well-defined risk.

Typically we control our risk by starting with a smaller position and only adding money after it starts working. And while we start this trade the same way, this situation is a little more tricky because most of these Chinse headlines come in the middle of the night. That leaves us vulnerable to a dramatic gap opening like we saw Monday morning. For this reason, we might want to hold less risk overnight than we normally do. Or at the very least, acknowledge the increased risk and be willing to hold something that could jump past our stop-loss levels.

While buying the dip in the face of all of these spooky and uncertain headlines feels risky, if we follow a sound plan, the risks are actually quite modest. By the time it “feels safe”, the discounts will long gone, and in fact, the higher prices actually make the “safe feeling” time riskier. Jumping in at the lows with a sensible plan and well-defined stop-loss gives us both protection and profit opportunity. Hard to argue with that.

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Tags: S&P 500 Nasdaq $SPY $SPX $QQQ $IWM

Jan 27

Is the worst still ahead of us?

By Jani Ziedins | End of Day Analysis

Free After-Hours Analysis:

The S&P 500 tumbled for a second day on growing Coronavirus fears. While the odds of a massive epidemic remain very small, the risk is not zero and that is making investors nervous. As high as stocks climbed over the last few months, there was a lot of air underneath us and it doesn’t take much uncertainty to knock down a highflying market.

As I wrote last week, today’s tumble shouldn’t have surprised anyone. While history tells us these things don’t have a lasting impact on stocks, they do make a lot of waves in the moment and we were definitely seeing that today.

The bigger questions is if today was the worst of it. And unfortunately, the answer looks like “no”. These things usually end in a capitulation bottom when the selling climaxes and we exhaust the supply of fearful sellers. Today’s market traded mostly sideways and there wasn’t a lot of aggressive selling. The majority of owners held steady through the rocky open and the lack of new supply prevented prices from falling under the early lows. While this stability felt reassuring in the moment, it leaves many owners at risk of getting spooked out. That overhang means the worst could still be ahead of us.

This morning’s resilient open gave us a great buying opportunity. The early bounce gave us a clear stop-loss level to limit our risk. But if this was going to be a good trade, we would have seen prices climb decisively throughout the day. Instead, the market stumbled into the close. That is never a good sign.

This lethargic close means we probably have lower prices ahead of us. Luckily, most readers of this blog either took profits proactively last week or at the very least used 3,300 as a trailing stop to lock in their profits Friday. Rather than fear this dip, these proactive profit-takers are looking at this dip as a fantastic buying opportunity. Instead of lying awake at night debating whether they should stay in or get out like most investors, these proactive traders are looking at this dip as a fantastic buying opportunity.

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Tags: S&P 500 Nasdaq $SPY $SPX $QQQ $IWM

Jan 24

Does the Coronavirus really matter?

By Jani Ziedins | End of Day Analysis

Free After-Hours Analysis:

Does the Coronavirus really matter? Well, yes…..and no. The virus definitely matters to the people directly affected. It also matters to health organizations and governments. Their quick and decisive action will definitely help slow the spread of this deadly virus. And hopefully, their proactive response will keep this from spreading any further than it needs to.

Aside from the obvious human element, we are traders and we want to know how this will affect the stock market. By this point, everyone is drawing parallels to previous outbreaks and how the ultimate result was inconsequential for stocks. But the important thing to keep in mind is that assessment was only after it was all said and done. The only reason we remember these previous episodes is because they were big deals when we were in the middle of them. And chances are good the same thing will happen this time too.

While there are a lot of bulls arguing with the market dipping a handful of points over the last few sessions, the thing to remember is no one wins an argument with the stock market. Either we go along with it or we get out the way. If this market wants to dip on these headlines, great. Pull the plug on your longs and wait to get back in at lower levels. If you know this won’t last, rather than argue with it, be proactive and profit from it!

As I wrote previously, the greatest advantage we have as independent traders is our nimbleness. If we don’t take advantage of this strength, we are giving up the most important weapon we have in our arsenal. But if we are going to sell, we need to be proactive and do it early. I took a big chunk of profits last week because the market had a good run since December’s 3,200 breakout. These things always move in steps and I like taking at least some of my profits off the table after the market runs to the next obvious resistance level. That said, I did leave some money in with a stop near 3,300 just in case this kept racing higher. One foot in and the other foot out gave me the best of both worlds.

But as expected, the market dipped under 3,300 and I got stopped out of my final position today. I didn’t know what would happen when I planned this trade, I just new odds were good that something was going to come along and knock us down. And that is exactly what happened today.

Now that I’m out of the market, I have a pile of cash itching to get back in. Maybe that happens on Monday when all of this Contravirus stuff blows over and prices rebound back above 3,300. Or maybe the situation grows more grave and stocks dip even further. Either way, I have a plan to get back in. Do you?

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Tags: S&P 500 Nasdaq $SPY $SPX $QQQ $IWM

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