Option Investor

Daily Newsletter, Thursday, 11/04/1999

Printer friendly version

The Option Investor Newsletter         Thursday 11-4-99
Copyright 1999, All rights reserved. 
Redistribution in any form strictly prohibited.

Posted online for subscribers at http://www.OptionInvestor.com

Published three times weekly, Sunday, Tuesday, Thursday evenings.
MARKET WRAP  (view in courier font for table alignment)
        11-4-99           High     Low    Volume Advances Decline
DOW    10639.60 + 30.50 10711.80 10602.90   981,700k 1,582  1,458
Nasdaq  3055.95 + 27.44  3077.41  3028.52 1,361,143k 2,019  1,948
S&P-100  714.85 +  4.02   719.38   710.83    Totals  3,601  3,406
S&P-500 1362.64 +  7.71  1369.40  1354.93            51.3%  48.7%
$RUT     439.90 +  1.44   442.39   438.46
$TRAN   2969.20 -  7.30  2997.40  2963.03
VIX       24.00 +  0.30    24.79    22.85
Put/Call Ratio      .49

A New Drug War Erupts in the Shadow of Friday's Employment Report.

The first real test of the current market rally's strength comes 
tomorrow when the Labor Department releases unemployment data for 
October. Traders have been anticipating these numbers for several 
days and are hoping that they will give us a hint as to what the 
Fed will do with interest rates at their November meeting. The 
other talk of the town was the bidding war that erupted today 
between Pfizer (PFE) and American Home Products (AHP) over co-drug 
producer Warner Lambert (WLA). 

A trend has re-developed recently in which stocks rally in the 
morning and have a sell-off as the day progresses. This 
pattern has repeated itself in one form or another for five 
consecutive days, including today (at least in the NASDAQ). Major 
indexes opened the day moderately higher and then drifted lower 
throughout the day. During the last hour of trading things got a 
little more volatile and stocks closed off their lows, but well off 
of their highs. The following chart shows this pattern of high 
openings and intra-day declines for the Dow.


Some of the late volatility can be attributed to traders squaring 
themselves for tomorrow's employment report. The government 
releases the data at 8:30 a.m., before the stock markets open. If 
you remember, last month's figures were surprisingly low, showing 
a decrease in the number of jobs created. That result was an 
anomaly and it would not be surprising if September's figures are 
revised. The consensus calls for the unemployment rate to remain 
unchanged at 4.2% and non-farm payrolls to rise by 290,000. If 
the figures come in much stronger than that, many economists feel 
one more rate hike will become a foregone conclusion. However, 
the Fed does not meet until November 16th, and October CPI data 
will be released before then. Alan Greenspan and friends will be
looking closely at the CPI data before making any decisions from
tomorrow's numbers.

The NASDAQ continued its strong rally, and today makes the fifth 
day in a row of record highs. The NASDAQ's strength has been very 
impressive and some of the same technicians who two weeks ago 
were calling for another 5 to 10% decline in the stock market are 
now saying stocks have turned a corner and are expected to go 
higher.  Chip stocks, telecom, software, and more recently 
Internet stocks have been the driving forces behind the NASDAQ's 

Volume continues to be very heavy with 1.36 billion shares 
changing hands on the NASDAQ. That result breaks into the top 
five volume days ever. On the NYSE the total came to 977 million, 
which is strong but not extraordinary. Looking at the advance/
decline line, it is apparent that more and more stocks are 
participating in this rally. Today's advances were not limited to 
just tech stocks either - financials, chemical, biotech, paper, 
health care, and drug stocks all had strong days today.  Bears 
would argue that they have not improved enough to warrant the 
gains we've seen, but bears are usually fretting over every 
little number while the rally passes them by. I know, I've been 

In a somewhat surprising development, Pfizer started a drug war 
of its own by asking WLA shareowners to just say no to AHP. They 
made a counter-offer to American Home Products' friendly $72 
billion merger with Warner Lambert. Pfizer offered an additional 
$10 billion, for a total of $82.4 billion. In addition to 
proposing a merger, Pfizer sued Warner Lambert in an attempt to 
invalidate the $2 billion break-up fee that was part of the AHP 
deal.  There were not many details on PFE's suit, but Reuters news
did print this: "The lawsuit, Pfizer said, charges that the breakup 
fee and lock-up option are illegal and invalid and that Warner-
Lambert's directors breached their fiduciary duties."  It will be 
interesting to see how this plays out. In case you are wondering 
why WLA is in such high demand, neither Pfizer nor AHP have any 
blockbuster drugs in the pipeline and the drug industry is very 
competitive, and even the big players have a relatively small market 
share. Viagra is a tough act to follow.

Internet stocks have again found favor among traders. 
TheStreet.Com Internet index closed at a record high today on 
the strength of a 3.6% gain. Only 3 of the 20 stocks that 
comprise the index failed to make advances today, and only 
Amazon.com had substantial losses. A lot of the top tier Internet 
stocks are momentum stocks and it appears that the momentum that 
deserted the sector in the spring has returned, although some of 
the former leaders have languished. Amazon and Yahoo have not 
participated in this rally.


Much of the recent rally in stocks can be attributed to the 
strength in bonds. If you look at the following chart comparing 
the yield on the 30-year Treasury and the level of the NASDAQ, a 
big part of the reason for the NASDAQ's ascent becomes apparent. 
While we may not see sub 5% rates any time in the near future, 
bond traders are much happier and positive in their outlook than 
they were a few weeks ago. Yields continued to decline today, 
falling below 6.10% for the first time since September. Unless we 
start to see some very inflationary economic data, it appears 
yields have put in at least a short-term top. Tomorrow's 
employment data gives us a good opportunity to gauge how tight 
the labor market is and if the yield declines are warranted.

Regardless of how tomorrow's employment data comes out, the 
morning will probably be volatile, making it difficult to get 
good fill prices on orders, particularly options. Unless you are 
very confident about the trade you are making it's probably 
better to wait a little while to see how things play out. 
Leave the stock chasing to the day traders.  If the report is 
good, then it may fuel the market into the next economic report.

The NASDAQ looks a little overbought right now, but the markets
behavior in general looks and smells like a bottom is in place. 
Perhaps that sounds like a dumb thing to say after 5 straight days 
of record high closes on the NASDAQ, but the other indexes are still 
off their highs and only two weeks ago the market looked very 
weak. While pullbacks have been rare the past week and the 
tendency to open strong and weaken throughout the day makes it 
more difficult to pick entry points, use weakness to get into 
strong stocks in good sectors. 

Everyone should know by now that the markets move lightening-fast.
Never forget that investor sentiment can be very fickle, but a lot 
of money that had previously been sitting on the sideline has come 
into stocks this past week. This is a bullish sign and if sideline 
money continues to flow in it should be enough fuel to keep the 
rally going a little while longer. 

Please notice that in our Play-of-the-Day section we have listed
both a call play and a put play.  This is because the Employment
report tomorrow will determine market direction.  If things come 
out positive, then the call play would be best.  If the report is
negative, then the put play.  Of course, it is possible that the
report comes out with conflicting numbers and the market may just 
go sideways, but odds are will see high volatility even if we did.
If we don't, option premiums may inflate slightly due to expected 
volatility anyway.  

We would also like to announce a new feature coming to the OIN
website www.OptionInvestor.com.  Starting this weekend, we will 
be launching our "ask the analyst" section.  You, the reader, will 
get the chance to email in a stock symbol of your choice.  Our team 
here will do a brief graphical diagram showing some basic technical
analysis explaining how to read the chart.  We know this is going to 
be a popular feature, so don't be disappointed if you don't see
your stock in the next few weeks.  We only have room for a few 
in our Sunday newsletter.  Please send those requests to:

Good luck and happy trading.

Sell too soon.

Research Analyst

The Tale of Two Readers
By Jim Brown

Actually it seemed more like 2000 readers but the trend was clear.
At the San Francisco money show last weekend we had about 750 readers
attend the OptionInvestor pre-event hospitality suite and about
2,750 attend our nine teaching sessions over the three days. I met
and talked at length with hundreds of subscribers and most fell
clearly into one of two categories. Winners and losers. Maybe a
better description would be old readers and new readers.

The old readers were coming up to me and bragging about how much
money they were making, what great plays they had been making and
what a great market we had been having.

The new readers were complaining about losses, about being stopped 
out repeatedly, about how much they lost holding over XYZ earnings 
and how they hoped XYZ would rebound before expiration since the
options they owned were worthless. 

The picture was clear and it only took a couple sentences from
each person to determine in which group they belonged. This is
very frustrating for us as writers and teachers. I don't think
there is any way to prevent this expensive learning curve 
completely but we are going to try.

Our experience has taught us that once a subscriber has passed
three months they are likely to be with us for a long time. The
three month window is based on the pain threshold of the reader
and their ability to pay attention to what we are teaching. 

Beginning options trading can be a very expensive period. New
readers who have heard about some of the very large returns 
that are claimed within the community and feel like this is an 
opportunity to steal. Unfortunately it is. The market steals 
from you.

Options trading is not like stock investing. This is not a buy 
and hold investment. The time factor is completely overlooked
by the new option trader and they rush into positions blindly
with complete disregard for entry points or real life 
expectations of what to expect from the stock.

Stocks go up and stocks go down but time decays constantly. We
get emails weekly asking why XYZ stock went up but the XYZ-call
went down. This shows a complete misunderstanding of options as
an investment. Beginning readers plunge into positions with
blissful ignorance and then hold them until they are worthless
always expecting them to recover their former glory. Most new
option traders are previous stock investors. While entry points
are critical in options the same can be over looked in stock
investing as long as the market is trending up. Traders that
have made money in stocks over the last several years, probably
did so even after making many mistakes. The bull market rescued
them from failure and in doing so, convinced them they were
"stock traders". Nothing could be farther from the truth.

Options trading is not as forgiving. Entry points are critical.
Time awareness is critical. Expectation is critical. Market
awareness is critical. Err in any of these and losses are bound
to appear.

New traders with $$ signs in their eyes are blinded by optimism 
and hype. They buy a $10 OTM call on a $50 stock after five days 
of strong gains with 30 days till expiration and then wonder why 
the option expired worthless. Must have been a bad pick! They
repeat this same scenario over and over until they reach their
pain threshold and give up on option trading. They compound their
problems by holding over earnings events, buying on market tops
and over trading by always having many open positions at once.
Even though the newsletter tries to teach the right way to trade 
options, these readers feel we are talking to someone else.

The older readers have paid the price of experience. They got
burned and went back to the drawing board to see what they were
doing wrong. Most I talked to last weekend were only in the 
market 1-2 days per week, OR LESS! They waited for the right 
opportunity and then executed their plan. They were happy and
carefree. There was no stress. Several actually got tears in
their eyes as they were relating some of their recent winning
plays. I talked to dozens of readers who had quit their jobs
and were now successfully trading options for a living. 

It was a very moving experience to see the joy these traders 
were having after seeing the light. Unfortunately, every
winning trader was offset by the sob stories of a trader who
was going through the agony of defeat. This was very painful
to all of us. Where some of the winning traders were bragging 
about the big bucks they made this year, some over a million
dollars with triple digit returns, the losers were relating
losing their last $2,000 or having to sell things to raise
money to keep investing. This gave me a serious case of 
heartache. I counseled as many as I could and even suggested
mutual funds to some. It was still very painful. 

The point. Option trading is either very profitable or very
expensive depending on your experience level. Unfortunately
the only way to get this experience is by trading. We are 
going to undertake a new project to provide comprehensive
educational materials on the website to help new traders,
WHO ARE READY TO LEARN, the right way to trade options. Why
did I bold that last statement? Because many new traders
know everything already or at least feel like they do. The
market will make believers of those that don't. When the 
students are ready the teacher will appear.

For those that want to avoid the painful expense of this
education experience I suggest paper trading until you are
comfortable with the process. We will start a ten part series
on Sunday to try and make the educational process less painful.
Until you have developed the confidence you need to trade
profitably there should not be a rush to trade. It doesn't 
cost anything to sit on the sidelines until you are ready.
It does cost a lot to invest BEFORE you are ready. The market
will destroy you without proper education and preparation
but it can't reach into your account and steal your money
without your approval.

Until Sunday, Wait for an entry point!

Jim Brown


Technology Offers Quick Path to Profits

By Cindy Christ

Consumers are expected to spend record amounts online this 
holiday season, creating a prime opportunity for investors to 
turn quick profits in consumer-based technology stocks, says 
Salomon Smith Barney.

Speaking yesterday from a luncheon in Hong Kong, Salomon Smith 
Barney vice president and chief technology strategist Andrew 
Barrett advised investors to allocate up to 40 percent of 
their equity portfolio in U.S. technology stocks, adding that 
the fourth quarter presents a top buying opportunity to earn 
quick returns in consumer-based tech issues.  



e-Commerce: Will Shoppers Get What's Coming to Them?

By Cindy Christ

Despite rosy projections for online holiday sales, experts are 
wondering if eTailers are up to the job.

A new study by Jupiter Communications finds that just 10 
percent of online commerce sites could meet even a doubling of 



Cornering the B2B E-Commerce Market

By S.P. Brown

Finally, the business-to-business (B2B) e-commerce stocks are 
getting some of the Internet limelight that used to be 
reserved for their business-to-consumer (B2C) brethren.  It's 
about time. 


Market Posture

As of Market Close - Thursday, November 4, 1999 

                   Key Benchmarks
Broad Market       Bearish/Bullish  Last    Posture/Since  Alert

DOW Industrials   10,750  11,320  10,639    BEARISH   9.23
SPX S&P 500        1,350   1,420   1,362    Neutral  10.29
OEX S&P 100          690     725     715    Neutral  10.28
RUT Russell 2000     445     465     440    BEARISH   9.14
NDX NASD 100       2,320   2,500   2,703    BULLISH  10.28
MSH High Tech      1,120   1,250   1,367    BULLISH  10.28

XCI Hardware       1,000   1,090   1,074    Neutral  10.15
CWX Software         750     800   1,018    BULLISH   9.03
SOX Semiconductor    450     525     604    BULLISH  10.29
NWX Networking       525     615     659    BULLISH  10.28
INX Internet         450     525     510    Neutral  10.15

BIX Banking          660     690     667    Neutral  10.28
XBD Brokerage        410     440     439    Neutral  10.28
IUX Insurance        645     660     617    BEARISH   7.23

RLX Retail           915     960     880    BEARISH   7.23
DRG Drug             365     390     398    BULLISH  11.04  *
HCX Healthcare       720     785     785    BULLISH  11.04  *
XAL Airline          180     190     149    BEARISH   5.21
OIX Oil & Gas        280     315     282    Neutral  10.21

Posture Alert    
Technology continues to dominate this market while individual 
investors have gained tremendous confidence, and as such, have 
destroyed the short sellers. With Thursday's action, we have 
turned BULLISH on the Drug and Healthcare sectors. Other sectors 
with positive action include Brokerage (+4.90%), Software 
(+2.46%), and Internet (+2.28%). The only negative action 
continues with the Oil & Gas sector (-1.32%).

A detailed description of our Market Posture and its
applications can be found at:


Market Sentiment 

Thursday, November 4, 1999


Will all short sellers please raise your hands! The smell of blood 
is in the air, and the bulls are gaining confidence, with a great 
deal of more upside in the making. With volume exploding these 
last several days, we would not be surprised to the Nasdaq 
continuing with its tear. When was the last time you witnessed 
stocks opening up +35-50 like the last several days? It's been 
awhile. The combination of all the cash on the sidelines being 
used with the fact that the shorts are getting squeezed makes more
upside inevitable. 

Below is a quick list of short interest for the Nasdaq. 
Obviously, heavily shorted stocks have bearish sentiment, which 
from a contrarian standpoint, is actually positive. It can be 
very useful because you can visually see what stocks will have 
more buying pressure if the shorts run for cover. Just witness 
what E-Trade and Knight-Trimark did today. As a side note, short 
interest for the Nasdaq reached an all-time high just a week ago 
and increased 5% from the previous month.   

Short Interest Highlights, NASDAQ Issues
Tuesday, October 26, 1999
Largest Short Positions
Rank                  Oct. 15    Sep. 15      Change
1 Cisco Sys         41,913,992 35,312,823   6,601,169
2 Intel             37,586,522 40,997,360  -3,410,838
3 Amazon.Com        36,919,383 34,876,997   2,042,386
4 Microsoft         31,735,669 28,481,691   3,253,978
5 Dell Computer     27,837,444 31,307,826  -3,470,382
6 E*trade Group     26,757,152 25,530,010   1,227,142
7 Qwest Commun Intl 25,238,901 22,161,123   3,077,778
8 MCI Worldcom      25,113,459 26,800,772  -1,687,313
9 Global Crossing   24,942,658 26,648,550  -1,705,892
10 Nextel Com A     23,975,398 22,531,948   1,443,450
11 Oracle           22,742,493 20,457,354   2,285,139
12 Peoplesoft       18,263,768 16,527,648   1,736,120
13 AT Home          17,379,044 13,297,863   4,081,181
14 Global Telesyste 17,033,114 15,948,859   1,084,255
15 Knight/Trimark G 17,004,749 10,497,289   6,507,460

Largest Changes
Rank                  Oct. 15    Sep. 15      Change
1 Cisco Sys         41,913,992 35,312,823   6,601,169
2 Knight/Trimark GR 17,004,749 10,497,289   6,507,460
3 Level 3 Comm      10,589,705  4,558,524   6,031,181
4 Yahoo             12,586,194  8,161,630   4,424,564
5 AT Home           17,379,044 13,297,863   4,081,181
6 Ventiv Health      3,319,952          0   3,319,952
7 Microsoft         31,735,669 28,481,691   3,253,978
1 Adelphia Commun    3,010,507  7,725,666  -4,715,159
2 ADC Telecommun     6,517,390 10,104,783  -3,587,393
3 Dell Computer     27,837,444 31,307,826  -3,470,382
4 Intel             37,586,522 40,997,360  -3,410,838
5 Charter One Finl     946,494  3,705,639  -2,759,145
6 Sunrise Assisted   2,800,231  5,356,508  -2,556,277
7 Applied Materials  7,459,561  9,780,909  -2,321,348

Largest Short Interest Ratios

The short interest ratio is the number of days it would take to 
cover the short interest if trading continued at the average daily 
volume for the month. For a complete list of short interest, you 
can go to: 

*Dinner for 2 in New York = $175

*Tickets to the opera with your loved one = $85

*The look of a short sellers face after their stock gapped up 45 
points = PRICELESS


Bears have quick triggers:
After being beaten up for many years, bears are quick to 
run & hide, and will cover short positions in a flash.

The results are in, with exception from a few stragglers, and the 
quarter ended up very solid.

Investor Intelligence:  
As a contrarian indicator, we may have witnessed the bottom in 
pessimism, and should this prove right, this market has a lot more 
upside in the months ahead.

Interest Rates:
The yield on the 30-yr Treasury is now safely off the 52-wk high.

Mixed Signs: 

Volatility Index:
The VIX continues to prove that 32-33 is a great buying opportunity, 
and also shows that the low 20's have been a good exit point. 

Advance/Decline Line:
The A/D line is showing signs of basing out.


Miscellaneous Uncertainty:
Y2K, inflation, higher interest rates, slowing corporate earnings, 
earthquakes, U.S. Dollar uncertainty, are all leading to an abundance 
of uncertainty for professionals and investors alike.

OTM Call Analysis

As we move closer to the November expiration cycle, Pinnacle is 
tracking the level of call buying (OTM) between 680-780 among option
speculators. As we have been documenting, excessive out-of-the-
money (OTM) call may serve as overhead resistance.

November Expiration Cycle
OEX OTM Call Analysis (Open Interest November 680-780)
Date                 Open Interest     Change %    Alert

Friday, October 15        39,072          -
Friday, October 22        61,250       +56.8%
Friday, October 29        75,022       +92.0%

The Power of Sentiment Analysis

It has often been said that the crowd is right during the
market trends but wrong at both ends.  Measuring and
evaluating the sentiment of the crowd, therefore, can give
savvy option traders a decided edge.

OEX Pinnacle Index              Friday      Tues       Thurs
Benchmark                       (10/29)     (11/2)    (11/4)

Overhead Resistance (720-740)    14.60        9.08      6.90

OEX Close                       717.03      707.82    714.85

Underlying Support (700-715)      0.21        1.46      1.62

Average ratings: 
Resistance levels 2.0 / Support Levels .5

What the Pinnacle Index is telling us:
Based on 11/4/1999, support is still light, and overhead resistance 
is heavy.

Put/Call Ratio                  Friday     Tues       Thurs
Strike/Contracts                (10/29)    (11/2)    (11/4)

CBOE Total P/C Ratio             .69       .57        .51
CBOE Equity P/C Ratio            .42       .46        .49
OEX P/C Ratio                   1.51      1.33       1.32

Peak Open Interest (OEX) Friday           Tues            Thurs
Strike/Contracts         (10/29)          (11/2)         (11/4)

Puts                   670 / 11,886    670 / 10,895   670 / 10,728
Calls                  690 /  7,626    740 /  8,223   740 /  8,504
Put/Call Ratio            1.56            1.33           1.26

Volatility Index    Major
Date                Turning Point       VIX

October 97          Bottom              54.60      
July 20, 1998       Top                 16.88         
October 8, 1998     Bottom              60.63
January 11, 1998    Top                 26.38
March 4, 1999       Bottom              28.15   
May 14, 1999        Top                 25.01 

July 16, 1999       Top                 18.13 
August  5, 1999     Bottom              32.12 

October 15, 1999    Bottom?             32.06

November 4, 1999                        24.01 

Investors Intelligence Major             Percent     Percent
Date                   Turning Point     Bullish     Bearish

October 97             Bottom            22.0        48.3       
July 20, 1998          Top               52.0        24.0         
October 8, 1998        Bottom            38.5        42.7
January 11, 1999       Top               58.3        30.0
March 4, 1999          Bottom            49.1        32.5

Oct. 13, 1999          Bottom?           39.2        37.5

Oct. 27, 1999                            41.1        38.4

If you like the results you have been receiving we 
would welcome you as a permanent subscriber.

The monthly subscription price is 39.95. The quarterly
price is 99.95 which is $20 off the monthly rate.

We would like to have you as a subscriber. You may 
subscribe at any time but your subscription will not 
start until your free trial is over.

To subscribe you may go to our website at 


and click on "subscribe" to use our secure credit 
card server or you may simply send an email to


with your credit card information,(number, exp date, name)
or you may call us at 303-797-0200 and give us the 
information over the phone.

You may also fax the information to: 303-797-1333

This newsletter is a publication dedicated to the education 
of options traders. The newsletter is an information service 
only. The information provided herein is not to be construed 
as an offer to buy or sell securities of any kind. The 
newsletter picks are not to be considered a recommendation 
of any stock or option but an information resource to aid the
investor in making an informed decision regarding trading in 
options. It is possible at this or some subsequent date, the 
editor and staff of The Option Investor Newsletter may own, 
buy or sell securities presented. All investors should consult 
a qualified professional before trading in any security. The 
information provided has been obtained from sources deemed 
reliable but is not guaranteed as to accuracy or completeness.
The newsletter staff makes every effort to provide timely 
information to its subscribers but cannot guarantee specific 
delivery times due to factors beyond our control.

The Option Investor Newsletter         Thursday 11-4-99
Copyright 1999, All rights reserved. 
Redistribution in any form strictly prohibited.


The Purpose of Trading is to Make Money

Sometimes it is easy to forget this basic point. I know 
sometimes I do. But this week, I am back at it, and 
accomplishing my goal. Sometimes I think trading is great 
to learn about the markets, that it is fun and challenging.
Sometimes I think working out rules and procedures will 
help me and I spend a lot of time on that. But with the 
market picking up after last Thursday & Friday's strong 
volume moves, I decided to get back into the game in a 
pretty big way. I altered my plan of making only 3 trades, 
feeling refreshed by the time I had spent on the sidelines 
in late Oct. My comparative advantage was patience & 
discipline in entering plays. Also, I decided that my 
comparative advantage would be the newsletter's choices 
of call plays. Here are my trades

     Contract  Symbol  Bought  Price  Sold  Price
SEBL Nov 105   SGQ-KA  11/1   10.25   11/2  18.50  
AOL  Dec 140   AOO-LH  10/29   5.88   11/3  9.25
AOL  Dec 140   AOO-LH  10/29   5.88  
EMLX Nov 155   UMQ-KK  11/3    8.75   11/4  18.88  
ADIC Dec 35    QXG-LG  11/4    8.75 
LVLT Nov 65    QHM-KM  11/3    8.75 
VRTS Nov 100   UQJ-KT  11/2   10.50 
ADPT Dec 45    APQ-LI  11/2    5.75 
VSTR Nov 95    UVT-KS  11/2    4.75 
PCS  Nov 80    PCS-KP  11/1    6.25 
RATL Nov 40    RAQ-KH  11/1    3.25 
CMVT Nov 105   CQV-KA  11/2    7.00 

AOL Dec 140. I bought this position last Friday near the 
close. I set limit sells at about 100% and 200% profit. I 
came close to my first limit of about 10 yesterday, and 
lowered the limit to take the profit. Now, the second half 
of the play is mostly "paid for" and I am going to let it 
run. That takes the emotion out of the play, and changes 
the risk/reward calculation quite a bit. 

SEBL Nov 105. I bought this position as the stock was rising 
on Monday morning. I came close to my limit sell of 100%, and 
lowered the limit to take the profit when the stock started to 
roll over on Tuesday. 

EMLX Nov 155. This is my perfect play of the week. Target 
shot it on a dip yesterday, taken out for a 100% gain at the 
open this morning. Before I even rolled out of bed, I paid 
the next three months rent. Cash flow is king.

The rest of the plays are calls that I target shot in the 
first few days of the week. My target shooting has been 
restrained and disciplined, and I have let more than one 
order go because it didn't come back to me. I nailed the 
RATL calls at the low of the day on Monday and came close 
with the CMVT calls too. 

There are too many plays; yes, I have gone back on my rule 
of holding only 3 or 4 positions. This is because I have 
conviction that money is flowing back into the market, and 
that the Fed Decision on Nov 16 will be market positive
(unless it is some kind of weird double secret tightening 
probation with a 1% rate hike!) because the uncertainty 
will be behind us. But I don't have an "edge" on any one 
stock. So, I am getting the value of the newsletter call 
picks. I am holding a somewhat diversified basket of calls, 
all with explosive potential. Some will die. Some will make 
terrific gains. I am holding them longer than I would in 
other market conditions because that is what makes sense 
to me now. If the market peaks, and I can see a reason, 
then I will sell these calls, and play one OEX put contract. 
Whatever makes me money. That's the name of this game. 

Janar Wasito

Please view this in COURIER 10 font for alignment

Daily Results

Index     Last    Mon    Tue    Wed   Thu  Week
Dow    10639.64 -81.35 -66.67  27.22 30.58-90.22
Nasdaq  3055.95   1.22  13.98  46.92 27.44 89.56
$OEX     714.85  -4.82  -4.39   3.01  4.02 -2.18
$SPX    1362.64  -8.81  -6.38   7.19  7.71 -0.29
$RUT     439.90   3.18   0.57   6.07  1.44 11.26
$TRAN   2969.20 -82.48  -8.42   8.42 -7.30-89.78
$VIX      24.00  -0.33   1.71  -0.24  0.30  1.44

Calls             Mon    Tue    Wed   Thu  Week

AOL      144.25   4.69  -1.13   5.81  5.69 14.88  Monster rages on!
EMLX     169.44  -4.94  -6.81  15.81  9.44 13.50  What a comeback!
SEBL     121.25   7.88   1.88  -5.56  7.25 11.44  Powerful run
ORCL      58.19   3.63   1.81   4.31  0.88 10.63  Down and funky
ADPT      49.75   1.81   1.25   0.44  1.25  4.75  Powering forward
MXIM      82.94  -0.56   3.13   1.19  0.25  4.00  Why fight trend?
SFA       61.00  -0.56   1.19   0.25  2.88  3.75  New
ADIC      40.56   7.38  -2.88   2.13 -3.31  3.31  Nice bottoming
DELL      42.56   0.63   0.44   0.81  0.56  2.44  DELL breaks out
SYMC      50.13   0.13  -0.88   1.38  1.75  2.38  Little flirting
GMST      88.50   0.25   0.88   0.50  0.00  1.63  GMST surrenders
IMNX      64.00  -1.06  -2.50   0.19  4.38  1.00  Tail of a rocket
VRTS     108.81  -1.88  -1.25   2.44  1.63  0.94  Bouncing back
LVLT      69.06  -0.25   1.75   1.44 -2.25  0.69  Leveling off??
PCS       83.38   1.75  -3.69   1.31  1.06  0.44  PCS marching
WMT       56.00  -0.06  -0.13  -0.38  0.25 -0.31  Earnings Tues
RATL      42.19  -1.19  -0.31   0.81  0.13 -0.56  Consolidating
CMVT     111.63  -3.88   2.75  -0.50 -0.25 -1.88  Slow and steady
VSTR      92.13  -3.75  -3.31  -0.19  0.63 -6.63  Staring contest


GT        37.13  -2.00  -0.06  -0.81 -1.31 -4.19  No end in sight
BBY       52.00  -4.19  -0.69   0.75  0.38 -3.75  Fears resurface
LTD       37.56  -1.19  -0.69  -0.81 -0.75 -3.44  No relief
ALD       55.00   0.81  -1.69   0.00 -1.06 -1.94  Back down??
PBI       44.56   1.19  -2.00   1.19 -1.38 -1.00  A breakthrough!
VISX      63.00  -1.69   4.63  -1.13 -1.38  0.44  Tug of war
INKT     107.31  -3.63  -0.88   1.81  8.56  5.88  Dropped

When we drop a pick it doesn't mean we are recommending a sell
on that play. Many dropped picks go on to be very profitable.
We drop a pick because something happened to change its
profile. News, price, direction, etc. We drop it because we
don't want anyone else starting a new play at that time. 
We have hundreds of new readers with each issue who are
unfamiliar with the previous history for that pick and we
want them to look at any current pick as a valid play.


No dropped calls tonight


INKT $107.31 +8.56 (+5.88) Although INKT was down early in the
week we did mention Tuesday that our put play, was beginning to
look a little better, but that the selling had no power behind 
it.  The volume had been extremely light which is always a 
concern.  Today we found out why.  Investors apparently decided
today that INKT could hold its own with other caching firms.
The effects of Henry Blodget's comments have run its course
as INKT jumped over $8 today.  INKT did give us an opportunity 
to make a small profit before the turnaround.  Remember we also
mentioned Sunday that there was a gap in the chart pattern for
INKT, technically speaking stocks will normally fill their gaps.
It may take a while but they usually do get filled.  The volume 
behind today's increase wasn't all that strong so the stock may
be in the processing of filling the "gap", or it could simply 
be reversing its trend.  What ever the reason at this time we 
are going to stand aside and find new opportunities. 


CMVT $111.63 -0.25 (-1.88) Wow, this is about as exciting as 
watching paint dry.  CMVT has had a slow but steady pattern 
ever since the S&P 500 announcement.  But although it is not 
a screamer, it is headed in the right direction.  In fact, CMVT 
has made entry points easy.  If you draw a straight line, up 
along the intraday lows for CMVT and you will have a good idea 
of where the entry points are.  Obviously, tomorrow's Jobs 
report will dictate the market activity.  Use caution if the 
numbers are bad.  We confirmed with Comverse today that they 
will be reporting earnings on Nov 30th after the close.  So that 
gives us lots of time to get in at a good point.  Hopefully, 
investors in CMVT will continue to drive the stock higher in 
anticipation of good earnings and a stock split.     

ADIC $40.56 -3.31 (+3.31) The one positive aspect to our ADIC 
play is the heavy volatility.  The negative side is that our  
stock has been moving generally lower the last couple days.  
Fortunately we had a nice bottoming pattern form today.  In 
typical ADIC fashion, the stock plummeted to the mid-$38 range 
this morning in just minutes.  For those of you who know this 
stock, you probably bought when ADIC stalled.  The stock sprung 
back to $42 in less than 10 minutes.  After hanging out there 
for a few hours, it headed back down to retest the lows.  The 
support held at $39 and off it went again back up.  That is why 
we decided to hold this play for another day.  If we have positive 
market sentiment on Friday, the bottom ADIC put in today could 
lure investors.  ADIC did announce a new product on Wednesday 
in the tape library family  but this wasn't enough to really 
drive the stock.   So support is at $39 and resistance at $42 
and again at $44.     

EMLX $169.44 +9.44 (+13.50) What a comeback!  Our split hopeful 
is back on track and once again heading to higher territory.  
After a disappointing start this week EMLX found its groove, 
the stock caught fire and managed to recoup all its losses 
and more.  Investors scooped up bargain priced shares, which 
resulted in another 52-week high at $172.50.  Remember the 
shareholder meeting is on November 18 and one item on the 
agenda is to vote to increase the authorized shares.  Expect 
volatile-trading sessions to continue as the date nears.  For 
those looking to place new trades wait for intraday pullbacks.  
EMLX has a wide trading range and has a tendency to relinquish 
gains during its trading sessions.  A good entry point would 
be around $165, if the stock retreats back to these levels.  
However, prior to placing trades confirm a positive bounce.  
Since the stock reached a new high today, no historical 
resistance levels exist, which is even more reason to use 
caution with this play.  With a bullish market, let's see how 
high our split play can take us.  In the news Groupe Bull, 
Louveciennes, France announced that Bull has selected and 
qualified the Emulex LightPulse(TM) LP8000 PCI host adapter as 
the fibre channel solution Bull will offer with their Escala 

VRTS $108.81 +1.63 (+0.94) With our split only a couple weeks 
away, once again investors have placed VRTS on their buying 
lists.  After a couple of shaky trading sessions to start the 
week VRTS has bounced back nicely, managing to set a new 
intraday high at $111.  Backed by split happy investors, this 
shows how resilient the stock is.  We expect this upward 
momentum to continue until the split date on November 22 as 
additional traders hop on the bandwagon.  For those placing 
new positions, wait for a slight pullback to $105, a level 
that has been hit several times during the week.  The stock 
has consolidated at this level and should act as a support in 
the future.  Resistance levels are hard to determine when a 
stock reaches new highs however, the most common indicators 
are even numbers like $110, $115.  Even though the overall 
picture is on the upside, watch for slight stalls at these 
levels.  In the news, VRTS announced that Sun Professional 
Services can now provide VERITAS Software packaged professional 
services, as well as VERITAS Software custom consulting.  The 
agreement is designed to enable Sun and VERITAS Software 
customers with the services to maximize their system availability 
through optimal configurations and reliable installations, thus 
ensuring peak performance and business without interruption.

ADPT $49.75 +1.25 (+4.75) The shares of ADPT continued 
powering forward today to a new 52-week high and back to a 
price ADPT hasn't seen since 1997.  ADPT traded as high as 
$50.13, before settling in to close the day slightly off of 
the highs at $49.75.  The price surged and the moneystream 
remained strong, although the volume remained relatively 
average.  Going forward we will look to tomorrow's Employment 
report for October to give us overall market direction in the 
short-term.  A positive number tomorrow should give us higher-
highs, and if the volume picks up, major highs.  If the number 
is digested negatively by the street, the volatility in the 
shares will return and then we should look to buy on dips.  
Current support for the short-term is at the $48 level.  On 
the news front, today ADPT announced that its Ultra160 SCSI 
technology has been selected by NEC Corporation for use in NEC's 
latest generation servers.  The significance of this move, is 
that this is the first Japanese company to incorporate this 

LVLT $69.06 -2.25 (+0.68) The volatility in the shares of LVLT
continued the last couple of days, but should have provided 
good trading profits if trailing stops were used as prices
increased.  Yesterday the shares traded as high as $73.13, 
before profit-takers stepped up again at the end of trading, 
today was a duplicate of yesterday and the early highs once
again could not push through at the end of the day, and the
profit-takers stepped up in a big way ahead of the Employment
Data to be announced tomorrow.  The stock ended the day near
the low end of the trading range.  The technical picture 
looks to be changing slightly, and will need to be monitored
for a possible rollover in Volume and Moneystream.  Going
forward we will let the momentum of the overall market 
dictate entering new positions.  Keep stops tight if you are
holding positions.  Look for support at the $67.25 level in
case of further weakness.  

RATL $42.19 +0.13 (-0.56) RATL has consolidated over the last
few days, with a bias still to the upside as the overall buying
power and liquidity has returned to the overall market.  The 
uncertainty going into tomorrow's trading day keeps us cautious
with the street mixed on the outcome of tomorrow's Employment
data for October to be released before trading begins.  If 
the numbers are digested positively, we believe the recent 
consolidation will be settled to the upside.  At this point the
bounces off of the lows this week at the $40.63 level, have 
proved to be a profitable trade, as the street remains positive
on the shares of RATL.  The overall confirmation of market
momentum remains important with the stock and should be 
evident after the first hour of trading tomorrow.  At this 
point we will look to add to positions on a breakout above $43.

AOL $144.25 +5.25 (+14.88) Following last Thursday's 2:1 
split announcement, the monster rages on.  AOL's momentum is 
obviously intact this week with the share price advancing 
11.5%, or $14.88 on moderate volume.  The 10-dma indicator 
($128.42) continues to trail below the stock's rise with 
support firm at $120.  After the huge gains there should be 
some kind of consolidation in the next few days, but 
unfortunately it's difficult to determine a near-term support 
level.  There's only 12 trading days left until AOL splits 2:1 
on Monday, November 22nd so it's possible that the stock may 
just go full-steam ahead!  In the news, AOL announced a multi-
year strategic and marketing alliance with Blockbuster (BBI), 
the world's leading renter of videos and video games.  AOL will 
invest $30 mln into Blockbuster.com for the joint development 
of high-speed broadband content and delivery.  According to 
some analysts, this could set the stage for a possible public 
offering of the Blockbuster.com unit.

SEBL $121.25 +7.25 (+11.44) Some investors were taking cash off 
the table yesterday.  SEBL pulled back $5.56 in heavy trading 
offering others an opportunity to get a foot in the door on this 
powerful split run.  Players were once again swiftly rewarded as 
SEBL closed up $7.25 today pushing it back towards opposition at 
$124.38, the 52-week high set on Tuesday.  Keep in mind that 
time is growing short.  SEBL will split next week on Friday, 
November 12th and OIN will exit the play before that date 
because of the risk of post-split depression.  In the news 
Siebel Systems announced it will donate $3 mln to the Children's 
Scholarship Fund (CSF), a charitable organization providing 
educational opportunities for low-income children.  

SYMC $50.13 +1.75 (+2.38) In a last minute spike today SYMC 
moved back above the $50 mark to flirt with its latest 52-week 
high at $50.25 (set on Tuesday).  The volume continues to be 
robust as this momentum play stretches into new territory and 
establishes a short-term support level around $47, just above 
the 10-dma ($46.00).  At this point though a conservative player 
will want to watch for a breakout above its overhead resistance 
on strong volume before opening any new plays.  Remember since 
we added this play on October 26th the stock has tacked on $6.13 
without much of a reprieve.  Therefore it wouldn't be 
inconceivable to see SYMC naturally pullback a couple of points.  

DELL $42.56 +0.56 (+2.44) After finally breaking out of its 
tight trading range ($38 to $41) on Tuesday, DELL continues to 
edge higher.  This hardware stock is now demonstrating soundness 
by making steady advances and for the past two days, not dipping 
below $41.50.  Originally DELL was a pure technical play, but 
now we're anticipating a run ahead of earnings next week.  The 
company is expected to report on November 11th.  In the news 
today Dell named former General Electric (GE) executive, Goran 
Malm, to senior VP of the company and president of Dell Asia-

WMT $56.00 +0.25 (+0.31) WMT again visited the familiar $56 
support level and found resistance for the day at $57.  The 
remainder of this earnings run is going to depend primarily 
on the employment report due out tomorrow.  A good report is 
going to send the market up and most likely take WMT right along 
with it.  If the report is bad, it could very well kill the 
remainder of WMT's earnings run.  New entries will be dependent 
on the outcome of this report.  If you are already in, tighten 
up your stops to protect profits.  This morning, WMT reported 
same store sales up 6.2% for the month of October, an increase 
of 25.2% from last year.  Analysts say that the numbers may 
have been higher, however continuing warm weather has slowed 
apparel sales.  Another reminder: WMT is set to announce earnings 
on Tuesday and therefore all positions should be closed out by 
Monday night.

GMST $88.50 +0.00 (+1.63) GMST hit another new 52-week high of 
$90.63 yesterday before making a move down to close at $88.50. 
GMST opened with strength today and quickly lost momentum 
dropping as low as $87.75.  GMST spent a good portion of the 
day flirting with the $89 level before finally surrendering to 
a close equal to yesterday's.  We still see support at $88 
though GMST did make a brief dip below this level in afternoon 
trading.  We see building support at $88.50 and whether or not 
this will hold is most likely dependent upon the outcome of the
employment report due out tomorrow before the open.  If the 
report is positive the market will most likely rally and pull 
GMST along with it.  In this scenario, $88.50 could serve as a 
solid entry.  If the report is negative, this support could 
become resistance, as GMST will most likely participate in the 
sell-off.  The next support level is the 10-dma at $86.  The 
only new news for GMST was an announcement made by TeleCruz 
technology pertaining to the receipt of an investment from GMST.  
This is part of an ongoing business relationship between Gemstar 
and TeleCruz.

VSTR $92.13 +0.56 (-6.63) It was roughly high noon (EST).  The 
bid, $92.  The ask, $92.06.  The buyers looked to have the upper 
hand as they boldly held their ground.  An occasional bluff by 
the sellers caused sporadic upticking yet, the showdown 
continued.  Finally, the buyers drew and the duel began.  Shares 
began dropping, some falling as low as $91.56 before the sellers
managed to recapture dominion and positive momentum once again 
returned to the land.  In other words, VSTR spent nearly two 
hours locked in a very tight spread before breaking into a bit 
of an afternoon wrestling match.  The sellers won the day as 
VSTR managed to close on the positive.  So now where?  Well, we 
reiterate our belief that VSTR is settling back into its 
channeling pattern that it had established before the onslaught 
of takeover rumors, which ran the stock up last Friday.  VSTR 
has solid support at $92 and further support at $90.  Resistance 
looks to be at $94.  Direction tomorrow will be dependent upon 
the employment report.  On a negative report, hopefully VSTR 
will hold $90 and could provide a solid entry if it bounces.  
If the report is positive, VSTR should go higher (barring any 
negative company specific news).  If VSTR manages to break 
through $94, we see this as a bullish indication and believe 
that VSTR will have the legs to run.  Next resistance after 
that will be at $100.

IMNX $64.00 +4.38 (+1.00) If owned stocks in the drug sector
today you probably have a little more green in your portfolio
tonight.  This morning with the announcement of the American
Home Products/Warner Lambert deal stocks in the drug sector
took off like a rocket.  Then Pfizer entered the picture late 
in the morning, which at this point hasn't hurt our play
either.  The raise in the price of IMNX is basically one of 
being in the right sector at the right time.  Technically 
Tuesday IMNX came down and bounced off the $59-$60 support 
area we mentioned earlier this week, and the merger news has
made our play look that much better.  Intraday support for 
IMNX is now between $63-$63.50 and back near the $62 mark.
If you entered a play in IMNX move your stops up to protect
any profits.  If you considering a new play look for either
further strength or a bounce off the support levels prior to 
entering a new play.

MXIM $82.94 +0.25 (+4.00) MXIM just keeps working higher.  The
volume is hanging in there as well.  Some of the Chat rooms
are calling this a market top.  We suppose it could be 
approaching a near term top, but why fight the trend.  The 
fundamental picture still is very good for the company as
they have an annual stockholders meeting scheduled in couple
of weeks and will be voting to increase the authorized shares
from 240M to 480M, which means they will probably announce a 
stock split as well.  The stock continues to stay above its
recent trading range.  If you entered a play keep your stops
close as we could see a pullback to the $77-$78 support
levels.  Currently intraday support for the stock is between
$80 and $81, and a bounce off that area would provide a 
nice buying opportunity.  MXIM has made a new 52-week high
in each of the six sessions, and yes we could see a pullback,
but given the current momentum behind the move we just don't 
see this a top in the market, but rather a potential for a 
good profit and an opportunity to buy calls.  

PCS $83.38 +1.06 (+0.13) Just as we thought - a buying 
opportunity with no need for panic following last Tuesday's 
downdraft coupled with volume on re-spun news.  PCS found support 
again on Wednesday morning at $81 and never looked back as it 
marched for a two-day gain of $2.38 on slightly above average 
volume.  To give it the positive technical spin, PCS closed at 
its high of the day, which looks favorable for tomorrow.  In the 
news yesterday, PCS got a strong vote of confidence when QCOM 
announced they would use PCS's nationwide network for its own 
logistics business.  That's good for another few dollars to the 
revenue stream, although the amount wasn't announced.  Looking 
for support?  Look no further south than $82.06, where a 765,000-
share block sold after the close yesterday.  Resistance is $85.  
Some loud words of caution: tighten up the stops to protect 
profits for the Employment and non-farm payroll figures tomorrow.  
If they are not well received, investors will waste no time in 
taking profits from the last 5 days of gains.  They may do 
anyway, even if the news is acceptable just because it's Friday.  
After the news becomes certain, dips are buyable if the market 
is going in our favor.

ORCL $58.19 +0.88 (+10.63) In the dance of the software titans, 
Bill Gates has got nothing on Larry Ellison as the bad boy at 
ORCL gets down, gets funky, and gets back up again, thanks in 
large part to a fast moving beat provided by a Merrill Lynch 
analyst on Tuesday.  Merrill's new price target of $60 is already 
nearly reality.  Salomon Smith Barney got in the act too, re-
issuing a Buy rating on ORCL based on ORCL's recent string of e-
business partnerships, including Ford, Veritas and Siemens with 
the notation that ORCL is becoming the e-business software giant 
of the Internet.  Still, it's better to be thankful than greedy.  
With so much profit built in over the last 5 days, there could 
be some profit-taking tomorrow, no matter what the employment 
figures look like.  Tighten up the stops to protect the profits 
that came so easily on this play.  Sometimes it's a gift so 
accept it graciously.  For those looking to get into the play, 
support is at $58, $56.50, then $53, where you can target 
according to your own risk profile.  Resistance is at $59.  If 
volume remains strong, ORCL should push through resistance 
within the next few days after the issue takes a breather.


PBI $44.56 -1.38 (-1.00) The tug of war continues between the 
the bottom fishers and the sellers in the shares of PBI.  The
good news is the momentum in the shares continues volatile, but
the downward trend has remained steady, but not dramatic.  Also
a positive sign going forward is that the shares remain below 
our current resistance level of $47.38.  Going forward, keep 
your trailing stops tight and look to take home profits if the 
Economic Data is digested favorably on the street.  The 
developing scenario looks as if the major selling is over.  If 
the Data is digested negatively and the overall market sells 
off, look to add to current positions below $43.75.  

BBY $52.00 +0.38 (-3.75) Today the retailers reported strong
same-store sales growth for October, reflecting the continued
confidence that is among American consumers, who are spurred 
on by low unemployment, solid economic growth, and relatively 
low interest rates.  The prospects for Christmas sales is also 
looking favorable.  The consumer electronics sector put out
very good numbers as well, but BBY unfortunately does not 
report numbers.  The fears for BBY resurfaced today, it was
even said that the earthquake in Taiwan messed up the price
components going into the Christmas season, and there might
not be enough supply on hand.  The analyst on the street 
recently have been mixed on the forward looking picture of 
BBY, some rating it a Buy and some rating it a Hold.  The 
technical picture remains just as mixed.  Going forward the
trading picture is uncertain, we will let the overall markets 
digestion of the Economic numbers dictate our next move.  Our
resistance point is now at the $54.31 level.  Look to add 
positions if there is a sell-off through $50.88. 

LTD $37.56 -0.75 (-3.44) Today, LTD reported same store sales 
up 8% for the month of October.  This news helped LTD to spike 
up at the opening this morning; however, the fanfare was short 
lived as LTD quickly began its seemingly daily descent.  LTD 
broke through the $39 support in trading on Wednesday, which, 
as we mentioned in Tuesday's write-up, was the indication of 
continuing negative momentum we were looking for.  LTD tried to 
make another late day rally today only to find resistance at
yesterday's close and be pulled back down.  We do see a bit 
of support forming right around  $37.50 and with an upcoming 
earnings announcement this level may very well hold.  It is 
also important to wait for the employment report tomorrow to 
confirm market direction before entering any new plays.  Should 
the report be positive, LTD could participate in a market rally, 
which could pull it through to embark on a potential earnings 
run.  Should the report be negative, LTD should have no problem 
making a dip to $36. 



The Option Investor Newsletter         Thursday 11-4-99  
Copyright 1999, All rights reserved. 
Redistribution in any form strictly prohibited.


ALD $55.00 -1.06 (-1.94) In looking at our play on ALD we 
are pleased that it has gone a bit further in the right 
direction.  However we need to point out our concerns over
the volume again.  We are certainly not trying to scare anyone
out of a play, yet we feel need to at least make you aware
of what is going on.  The ADV for ALD is about 1.75 mln shares
per day.  Both Wednesday and Today the volume has really
shrunk with just over 1 mln shares exchanging hands.  This 
suggests that although the stock is heading south which is good 
for our puts, there really are not a bunch of folks wanting to 
sell.  For that matter not many wanting to buy either.  The one 
positive is that ALD did close on the lows of the day at $55.  
If we get a bad jobs report tomorrow ALD could continue its 
slide.  If the strength continues in the major indices that 
momentum and psychology could begin to wear on our play.  What 
we are saying here is if you entered a position in ALD keep 
your stops close as this one could go either way.

GT $37.13 -1.31 (-4.18) Wow!  That's one long burn out.  GT 
continues to reward us on the downside as institutional selling 
continues to take place.  Recall that GT was removed from the 
DOW-30 this week, which means that every DJ-30 index is unloading 
this issue and replacing it with a new index entry.  That's well 
reflected in the volume, which picked up again today to exceed 
its ADV by 35%, thus confirming the downward pressure is for 
real.  Previous support of $39 is now a memory.  Next stop is 
$35.  Just be careful since the steep descent can't continue 
forever in a straight line.  Spikes back to $39 are buyable so 
long as a southerly bounce follows.  Otherwise, protect your 
profits by tightening up your stops.

VISX $63.00 -1.38 (+0.44) VISX is a tough one to call.  Near-
term support is in the $62 to $64 range, and we're stuck in 
the middle right now, from here it could now bounce up.  On 
the other hand, it closed $0.50 off its low of the day when 
the NASDAQ was setting its 5th straight record.  That's a bad 
sign for the price tomorrow.  Furthermore, with the market fast 
approaching the point of having to take some profits, and the 
Employment/non-farm payroll numbers being released tomorrow, 
investors may use Friday as an excuse to take profits no matter 
what the news.  A down day will likely spell good news for this 
put play.  This is a volatile play - better add that steel 
lining to your stomach.  Sadly, news is lacking too.  Looking 
for another support number?  Try $57.25, set intraday on Tuesday.  
Resistance is up at $68.  Wait for the break below $62, or a 
bounce south of a $68 spike.  Of course, confirm market direction 
before playing.


SFA - Scientific-Atlanta $61.00 +2.88 (+3.75 this week)

The company is one of the largest makers of set-top boxes used
by subscribers to receive cable TV programs and interactive 
services such as movies on demand and e-mail.  SFA also makes
transmission and distribution equipment such as digital video
compression products, signal encoders/decoders and distribution 
amplifiers.  The communication equipment company makes for
land-based and satellite network systems, cable TV operators
and telecommunication providers.  Scientific-Atlanta also
supplies earth stations for the Iridium global satellite phone
system.  Their primary competition comes from ANTEC, General 
Instrument, and Pioneer.

Ah those new highs, you gotta love em.  A new 52-week high is  
one of the things that drew us to SFA tonight.  Since the
communications equipment company released earnings last week
the analysts have liked the stock as well as the investing
public.  SFA reported a record first quarter bookings, revenues,
and earnings on Oct 26th.  Earnings came in at $0.31 per share 
compared to $0.19 the year before, and $0.03 ahead of analysts 
estimates.  Revenues seem to be driven by a strong demand for 
the company's transmission systems and their interactive digital 
set-tops for TV's.  They reported they had a backlog of bookings 
or orders at the end of the quarter to the tune of $549.9 mln 
an all-time record for the company.  Analysts also jumped in 
reiterating Buy recommendations and revising year 2000 estimates 
for the company by as much as 25%.  The consensus price target 
for most analysts is in the $70-$75 area.  The company has 
seen strong activity in their Broadband Segment and on the 
subscriber side of the company as well.  Since the middle of 
October, SFA has been climbing from the $48 area on average to 
better than average volume.  If you are considering a new play 
in SFA, look for the $57-58 area to provide support and then 
again near $56, should we see a pullback from the new highs.  
We would view a continued move up as long as the solid volume 
continues as an opportunity to buy calls.  As always, assess 
your risk profile prior to entering any trade.

No other news at this time.

BUY CALL NOV-50 SFA-KJ OI= 268 at $11.63 SL=9.00
BUY CALL NOV-55*SFA-KK OI=1935 at $ 6.88 SL=5.25
BUY CALL NOV-60 SFA-KL OI= 917 at $ 3.25 SL=1.50
BUY CALL DEC-55 SFA-LK OI= 434 at $ 8.38 SL=6.50
BUY CALL DEC-60 SFA-LL OI= 425 at $ 5.13 SL=3.25

Picked on Nov 4th at    $61.00     P/E = 42
Change since picked      +0.00     52-week high=$61.00
Analysts Ratings     8-9-2-0-0     52-week low =$15.94
Last earnings 09/99  est= 0.28     actual= 0.31 surprise +10.7%
Next earnings 01-28  est= 0.32     versus= 0.16
Average Daily Volume =   808 K
Chart = http://quote.yahoo.com/q?s=SFA&d=3m


No new put plays tonight


IMNX - Immunex Corp. $64.00 +4.38 (+1.00 this week)

Their primary products include Enbrel, for treating rheumatoid
arthritis, Lukine, which is used in the treatment of bone-marrow
transplant patients and Novantrone, used to treat acute non-
lymphocytic leukemia and to ease pain associated with prostate 
cancer.  Immunex develops biopharmaceutical products aimed at
treating cancer, auto-immune disorders, and infectious diseases.
They are in the developmental stages of developing other drugs
to treat asthma, leukemia, and certain other cancers.  Immunex
competes in the marketplace with heavy weight Amgen, Bristol-
Meyers Squibb and Merck.  54% of Immunex stock is owned by 
American Home Products through its subsidiary American Cyanamid.
IMNX is popular with the institutions as well with over 270 
holding stock in the company. 

Sunday's Write Up

Prior to announcing earnings, shares of IMNX were the trading
near $42. Since reporting better than expected earnings on 
Oct 18th, IMNX has been headed higher.  The market has been
able to shrug off several analysts downgrades as well.  The day
after earnings came out Salomon Smith Barney downgraded the 
biopharmaceutical company from a Buy to an Outperform based on
lower product revenue and a higher expense outlook with a price
target of $58.  Others feel the $110 million sales estimate
for their drug Enbrel is too high, with a new estimate of $102
mln.  On Monday Immunex was rated a near-term Sell at Gilmour
and Associates.  Since the downgrades the price of the stock has
climbed over $15.  We are not picking on the analysts or the
brokerage houses as they all do their work and call them as 
they see them.  However, what we are trying to point out is the 
investing public and traders many times will buy or sell with
little or no regard to analysts, brokerage firms or yes, even 
Internet Newsletter recommendations.  This past week IMNX gained
over $9.00 primarily on the heels of the strength in the broader
markets and an announcement that several biotech companies, 
including IMNX, are successfully moving their products for 
treating secondary-progressive multiple sclerosis(MS) through 
clinical trials.  Many times, information showing there may be 
a breakthrough or a new treatment for an illness or a disease 
is all it takes to drive the price of a company's stock through 
the roof.  If you see continued strength in the price of IMNX 
we would jump on board, but keep your stops close, as IMNX has 
gained over 50% since Oct 15th.  Should we get a pullback, 
intraday support for IMNX is between $59-$60, and then between 
$55-$56 and a bounce off those levels might prove to be a good 
entry point as well.  As always, consider your potential rewards 
versus risk prior to entering a position in IMNX.

Thursday's Write Up

If you owned stocks in the drug sector today you probably have 
a little more green in your portfolio tonight.  This morning 
with the announcement of the American Home Products/Warner 
Lambert deal stocks in the drug sector took off like a rocket.  
Then Pfizer entered the picture late in the morning, which at 
this point hasn't hurt our play either.  The raise in the 
price of IMNX is basically one of being in the right sector 
at the right time.  Technically Tuesday IMNX came down and 
bounced off the $59-$60 support area we mentioned earlier 
this week, and the merger news has made our play look that 
much better.  Intraday support for IMNX is now between 
$63-$63.50 and back near the $62 mark.  If you entered a 
play in IMNX move your stops up to protect any profits.  If 
you considering a new play look for either further strength 
or a bounce off the support levels prior to entering a new 

(Editor's Note:  The Play-of-the-Day will depend on the jobs 
report and how that affects the market.  That is why we have 
offered both a call and a put, depending on the circumstances).

BUY CALL NOV-50 IUU-KJ OI=658 at $14.63 SL=11.50
BUY CALL NOV-55 IUU-KK OI=689 at $10.00 SL= 7.50
BUY CALL NOV-60*IUU-KL OI=612 at $ 6.00 SL= 4.25
BUY CALL DEC-60 IUU-LL OI=487 at $ 8.75 SL= 6.50

Picked on Oct 31st at    $63.00    P/E = 229
Change since picked       +1.00    52-week high=$73.50
Analysts Ratings      3-7-8-0-0    52-week low =$16.61
Last earnings 10/99   est= 0.10    actual= 0.12 surprise +20.0%
Next earnings 02-03   est= 0.09    versus= 0.06
Average daily volume = 1.61 mln
Chart = http://quote.yahoo.com/q?s=IMNX&d=3m


GT - Goodyear Tire $37.13 -1.31 (-4.19 this week)

Goodyear has helped most of us keep our grip at one time or 
another.  After all, they are the world's largest tire maker.  
They also own the Dunlop and Kelly-Springfield brand.  
Headquartered in Akron, Ohio, the company manufacturers 
engineered rubber products and chemicals too in more than 90 
facilities in 30 countries.  It has marketing operations in 
almost every country around the world.  Goodyear, with the 
recent addition of its Dunlop tire joint ventures, employs 
more than 105,000 people worldwide.

Sunday's Write Up

Friday was another stellar day for the markets as investors 
continued to purchase shares of their favorite stocks.  
Subdued inflation fears and falling bond yields were the 
motivating factors behind these movements.  Unfortunately 
this euphoria seeped into our put play on GT.  After trading 
flat most of the day, late afternoon buyers stepped in and 
closed the stock slightly higher.  Despite this slight setback 
we remain bearish with this position.  We originally started 
this play because of readjustments within the DJIA.  GT will 
be removed from the list of thirty stocks and more worthy 
opponents will take its place among the elite.  The problem 
that ensues from this type of restructuring is every DJIA and 
"Dogs of the DOW" index fund must now begin the process of 
selling its GT holdings, then buying its replacements.  The 
selling has already started but it could be just a drop in the 
barrel compared to what lies in the near future, so watch for 
continued distress.  When placing new trades, wait for 
confirmed weakness in the stock.  A good entry point would be 
at current trading levels at $40-$41.  We know that $40 is not 
an established support level because it was broken on Friday, 
however GT managed to bounce at $38.50.  The nearest resistance 
level is $45, which shouldn't be a factor if all goes well.  
However, because broader market sentiment has turned positive, 
use the recommended stops just to be safe.

Tuesday's Write Up

Sniff.  Sniff.  Ahhhhhh...there's nothing quite like the smell 
of burning rubber to get your attention, as we all watch Goodyear 
go up in smoke.  Poor earnings and a delisting from the DJIA 
have caused the price to drop as index funds rebalance their 
portfolios, which means they must now sell GT.  Even the "Dogs 
of the Dow" funds (a theory that has fund managers picking the 
highest yielding DOW-30 stocks for the best appreciation potential 
in the coming 12 month period) have to sell it, thus driving the 
price lower yet.  Though it closed at its low of the day (a 
good negative technical sign), volume has been decreasing, 
indicating that the selling momentum may be losing speed, or 
perhaps it's just a slow market in comparison to the last 4 
days of trading.  Anyway, there appears to be some support at 
$39, so tighten up your stops to protect any profits and wait 
for a clear descent under $39 with volume, or a bounce south of 
$41 (if GT should happen to spike up with the market) before 
taking anew position.  Be prepared to exit if GT gets any 

Thursday's Write Up

Wow!  That's one long burn out.  GT continues to reward us on 
the downside as institutional selling continues to take place.  
Recall that GT was removed from the DOW-30 this week, which 
means that every DJ-30 index is unloading this issue and 
replacing it with a new index entry.  That's well reflected in 
the volume, which picked up again today to exceed its ADV by 
35%, thus confirming the downward pressure is for real.  
Previous support of $39 is now a memory.  Next stop is $35.  
Just be careful since the steep descent can't continue forever 
in a straight line.  Spikes back to $39 are buyable so long as 
a southerly bounce follows.  Otherwise, protect your profits 
by tightening up your stops.

(Editor's Note:  The Play-of-the-Day will depend on the jobs 
report and how that affects the market.  That is why we have 
offered both a call and a put, depending on the circumstances).  

BUY PUT NOV-35 GT-WI OI=926 at $8.25 SL=6.25
BUY PUT NOV-40 GT-WH OI=965 at $3.50 SL=1.75

Average Daily Volume = 767 K
Chart = http://quote.yahoo.com/q?s=GT&d=3m


No End In Sight..

Wednesday, November 3

Technology stocks continued their rally and the Nasdaq composite
closed above 3,000 for the first time. The Dow Jones industrial
average rose 27 points to 10,609 and the Nasdaq ended 46 points
higher at 3,028. The S&P 500 index climbed 7 points to 1,354. In
the broader market, advancing issues led declines 1,675 to 1,388
with more than 900 million shares traded on the NYSE. There were
58 stocks at new highs 96 at new lows. The 30-year U.S. treasury
bond rose 1/32 with the yield slipping to 6.14 percent.

Tuesday's new plays (positions/opening prices/strategy):

Cisco Systems    CSCO   DEC65C/NOV75C   $8.25   debit   diagonal 
Coyote           CYOE   DEC5C/NOV7C     $1.50   debit   diagonal 
Pacific Gateway  PGEX   JAN15C/NOV22C   $6.75   debit   diagonal

Our new picks were among the few technology issues that didn't
move higher during the session. Two of the positions offered
better-than-expected entry debits and our recorded prices were
well above the lows of the day. The CSCO position traded as low
as $7.50 and PGEX as low as $6.75 The CYOE spread was available
at the suggested price. 

Portfolio plays:

Technology stocks continue to lead the market and one of our big
winners rose to the top of the heap. Qualcomm (QCOM) jumped $35
after posting better-than-expected profits and a brokerage firm
raised its price target for the company. The issue is up over $80
since our bullish recommendation and the January debit spread is
trading at maximum profit. JDS Uniphase (JDSU) also continued to
rally, up another $20 to $190. This issue is up over $60 since we
opened the bullish ITM debit spread. Global Telesystems (GTS) was
another winner, up almost $5 after reporting favorable earnings.
As we said on Tuesday, our bullish calendar spread needed special
attention to maximize profits. A spread closing order provided a 
favorable profit of $0.62 but the exit opportunities were better
on an individual closing basis. As the stock price moved higher,
returns up to $3.50 were observed. Aware (AWRE) was also up $3 to
recent highs near $34 and our bullish diagonal spread is trading
at a $1.25 profit.

Smaller stocks appear to be gearing up for a run to the new year
(January effect) and many if our low-cost speculation plays are
beginning to return favorable profits. Data Broadcasting (DBCC)
was today's leader, up $1.12 to $13. Our bullish diagonal spread
is $3 ITM. Proxymed (PILL) moved $1 higher at midday and closed
near the high to move our OTM calendar spread into a profitable
range. These two stocks joined Talk.com (TALK) and Anesta (NSTA)
as recent winners. Another issue that rebounded favorably today
was Apollo Group (APOL). The stock climbed $1.12 to $24 and our
bullish debit spread is once again comfortably ITM. One of our
older positions, Network Associates (NETA) is finally reflecting
signs of a significant character change. The closing price today
was above $19, a recent resistance area and our deep-ITM debit
spread is now profitable. You may consider closing the position
to protect gains and limit losses.

In the long-term portfolio, most of our issues have recovered to
profitable status. Exxon (XON), The Limited (LTD) and Polaroid
(PRD) are the only stocks that have significantly underperformed
the market. The Sun Microsystems (SUNW) position has been one of
the best performing plays in the newsletter while other neutral
issues such as Computer Associates (CA), Cabletron (CS), Johnson
& Johnson (JNJ), Medtronics (MDT), and Solectron (SLR) continue
to lead the section with favorable returns. Our only losers were
Biogen (BGEN) and Philip Morris (MO), both falling on unexpected
(catastrophic) news. Those positions were closed to limit losses
and preserve capital.

Those of you in the Electronic Data Systems (EDS) credit spread
had another opportunity to exit today. The short position was
offered at $1.12, leaving the long side in play for any further
upside. The closing debit would put the play at a $0.12 loss but
there should be at least one more opportunity to unload the long
option for a small credit.

Thursday, November 4

U.S. stocks moved higher Thursday with Drug issues leading the
broad market while the Nasdaq climbed to another record close.
The Dow Industrials finished up 30 points at 10,639 while the
the Nasdaq composite index jumped 27 points to 3,055. The S&P
500 index ended up 7 points at 1,362. Advancing stocks outpaced
declines 1,581 to 1,456 in heavy trading of 977 million shares
on the NYSE. The 30-year bond was up 15/32 with a yield of 6.10%.

Portfolio plays:

There were some bright spots in today's activity. Etrade Group
(EGRP) rocketed over $5 to $31 after a poll from SIA reported
the number of investors using the Internet to trade securities
nearly doubled in 1999. Of those polled, 48% plan to trade with
Internet brokers more often in the next 12 months. It appears
that online investing is ready to grow more dramatically in the
coming years and companies like EGRP will benefit from the new
interest in personal portfolio management. Our bullish diagonal
spread traded as high as $4.50 credit, a favorable exit price
for those who want to protect current gains. Aware (AWRE) has
been on the move recently and today the stock climbed another
$3.62 to $38. Our current spread position in this issue is also
trading at a favorable exit price; a $1.75 profit in one month.
Message Media (MESG) was another big gainer, up $1.38 to $15
after being named "Best-of-Class" in the Users Choice Awards,
sponsored by Customer Support Management magazine. Our bullish
debit spread is now $2.50 in-the-money on the December position.

Motorola (MOT) and Solectron (SLR) led the way in the long-term
portfolio, both up over $3 on continued technical rallies. Our
current SLR position is at $70 and we will be monitoring that
issue for further upside indications. MOT is becoming difficult
to predict as the old resistance area has been penetrated with
solid accumulation but there are some major gaps to fill from
the recent climb. One stock that appears to be making a steady
recovery is Computer Associates (CA) and it will be interesting
to see how the issue fares near resistance at $60. Other recent
slumping issues have made there way back to a profitable range.
Those include Cabletron (CS), General Motors (GM), Johnson and
Johnson (JNJ) and Medtronics (MDT).

On the downside, two of our new bullish positions continued to
move lower. Cisco Systems (CSCO) and Pacific Gateway (PGEX) are
both having difficulty near their recent highs and the negative
effects of profit-taking will be difficult to overcome. There
should be some support for CSCO at $70 but the money-stream has
definitely turned bearish in the last two days (just our luck).
For PGEX, renewed buying may begin near $20 and the short term
up-trend is still in place.

Questions & comments on spreads/combos to ray@OptionInvestor.com


The Christmas season is fast approaching and with the prosperous
economy, the retail sector should perform very well. These two
companies appear to be on track to recover from recent lows and
the probability of profit in these positions is higher than other
plays, based on the small premium disparities in option pricing.
Both positions are based on the current price of the underlying
issue and recent technical history or trend. Current news and
market sentiment will have an effect on these plays so review
each position individually and make your own decision about the
future outcome of the underlying issue.


TOY - Toys-R-Us   $16.62     *** New Rumors And A New Range ***

Toys-R-Us and its subsidiaries is the world's premier retailer
of children's products, bringing toys, apparel and baby needs to
children and their families. The company has over 1400 children's 
specialty retail stores comprised of "Toys-R-Us", "Kids-R-Us" and
"Babies-R-Us", and two superstores combining all of the formats
under the name "KidsWorld".

The company has endured less than outstanding growth in the core
business but Babies-R-Us, which focuses on supplying first-time
parents with a one-stop-shop, is undergoing a unique transition
to a viable independent subsidiary. Some analysts say there's no 
competitor quite like it. Toys-R-Us also plans to supplement its
revenue with a spin off its e-commerce unit, toysrus.com, which
recently signed marketing deals with Yahoo, America Online and
and Microsoft.

Rumors that Dayton Hudson (DH) may be willing to pay $27 a share
for Toys-R-Us have driven the recent rally that pushed the stock
to a three month high of $17.25 in today's session. The reasons
for a possible merger are less than obvious to most analysts but
new interest in the stock is growing and option buyers continue
to speculate with short-term calls. We will participate in the
new bullish trend with a low-cost, calendar spread position.

PLAY (conservative - bullish/calendar spread):

BUY  CALL JAN-17.50 TOY-AW OI=2383 A=$1.62
SELL CALL NOV-17.50 TOW-KW OI=1763 B=$0.50

Chart = http://quote.yahoo.com/q?s=TOY&d=3m


CLE - Claire Stores  $20.44     ** On The Rebound ***

Claire's Stores and its wholly-owned subsidiaries, is a leading
mall-based retailer of popular-priced teens' fashion accessories.
The company's stores are operated under the trade names "Claire's
Boutiques", "Topkapi" stores, "The Icing" stores, "Claire's Etc." 
stores, "Accessory Place" stores, "Bow Bangles" stores, and "Dara 
Michelle"/"L'ccessory" stores.

The season for gift-giving is almost upon us and Claire's Stores
just reported outstanding sales for the past four weeks, up 15%
over the same period last year. Although same store sales were
slightly negative in October, there was a measurable improvement
in sales momentum during the end of the month. The company says
they are confident that holiday season sales will show a return
to positive same store comparisons and after the acquisition of
the Afterthoughts chain of 768 stores, analysts expect increased
levels of growth and profitability.

The company deserves consideration from fundamental investors as
both a value and growth candidate but we favor the bullish trend
in the recent technical history. Impressive earnings numbers may
help the company recover completely in the long-term but the new
change in character is the underlying reason for this position.
We will use the small option pricing disparities to open a low
cost, conservative position.

PLAY (conservative - bullish/calendar spread):

BUY  CALL FEB-22.50 CLE-BX OI=189 A=$1.62
SELL CALL NOV-22.50 CLE-KX OI=147 B=$0.38

Chart = http://quote.yahoo.com/q?s=CLE&d=3m


The straddle section has been less than impressive this week as
much of the market is consolidating after the recent 500-point
gain in the Dow. In the interim, technology and Internet stocks
have roared higher and one of our new straddles, American Online
(AOL) continues to perform well. The credit for the position was
near $28 at the close on Thursday and that is a favorable price
to exit the play. Allstate (ALL) is also rebounding after recent
lows and our April $25 straddle traded as high as $7.25 credit,
a $1.75 profit after one month. Ebay (EBAY) is consolidating at
recent lows near $128-$130 but the downward trend will need to
continue for the position to be profitable. We will consider an
exit of the bearish position if the stock can find support near
the bottom of this range. Mylan Laboratories (MYL) made a very
bullish move Thursday, up $1.12 through recent resistance near
$19. The April straddle is now at break-even and we expect the
upward trend to continue in the short term.


UVN - Univision  $85.75     *** Cheap Options ***

Univision is the leading Spanish language television broadcaster
in the U.S. The company's Network is the most watched television
network (English or Spanish language) among Hispanic households
and provides the Univision affiliates with 24 hours of Spanish
language programming. Univision owns and operates 12 full-power
and 7 low-power UHF stations. The Company also owns Galavision,
the leading U.S. Spanish-language cable network.

This position came up last week on two of our straddle scans and
it also made the recommended list of another popular newsletter.
The position satisfies all of the criteria for good probability 
straddles; 1) Implied Volatility must be low. 2) Probability must
indicate that the stock has a favorable chance of reaching the
break-even points. 3) A review of the past movements of the stock
must indicate that it has been able to make moves of the required
size in the required amount of time.

PLAY (conservative - neutral/debit straddle):

BUY  CALL MAR-85 UVN-CQ OI=235 A=$8.12
BUY  PUT  MAR-85 UVN-OQ OI=229 A=$6.75

Chart = http://quote.yahoo.com/q?s=UVN&d=3m

See Disclaimer in section one


Option Investor Inc is neither a registered Investment Advisor nor a Broker/Dealer. Readers are advised that all information is issued solely for informational purposes and is not to be construed as an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy, nor is it to be construed as a recommendation to buy, hold or sell (short or otherwise) any security. All opinions, analyses and information included herein are based on sources believed to be reliable and written in good faith, but no representation or warranty of any kind, expressed or implied, is made including but not limited to any representation or warranty concerning accuracy, completeness, correctness, timeliness or appropriateness. In addition, we do not necessarily update such opinions, analysis or information. Owners, employees and writers may have long or short positions in the securities that are discussed.

Readers are urged to consult with their own independent financial advisors with respect to any investment. All information contained in this report and website should be independently verified.

To ensure you continue to receive email from Option Investor please add "support@optioninvestor.com"

Option Investor Inc
PO Box 630350
Littleton, CO 80163

E-Mail Format Newsletter Archives