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Daily Newsletter, Wednesday, 03/03/2004

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The Option Investor Newsletter                Wednesday 03-03-2004
Copyright 2004, All rights reserved.                        1 of 2
Redistribution in any form strictly prohibited.


In Section One:

Wrap: Stocks Churn Ahead of Intel and Jobs Report
Futures Wrap: See Note
Index Trader Wrap: Some slippage, with SOX weakness


Posted online for subscribers at http://www.OptionInvestor.com
*******************************************************************
MARKET WRAP  (view in courier font for table alignment)
*******************************************************************
     03-03-2004            High     Low     Volume Advance/Decline
DJIA    10593.11 +  1.63 10610.00 10550.14 1.62 bln   1433/1379
NASDAQ   2033.36 -  6.29  2039.31  2020.29 1.79 bln   1506/1535
S&P 100   566.51 +  0.65   567.37   563.45   Totals   2939/2914
S&P 500  1151.03 +  1.93  1152.44  1143.78
RUS 2000  591.32 +  0.26   592.93   585.58
DJ TRANS 2887.96 -  8.94  2896.45  2865.09
VIX        14.55 -  0.31    15.27    14.47
VXO        14.61 +  0.01    15.46    14.60
VXN        23.09 +  0.67    23.48    22.75
Total Volume 3,760M
Total UpVol  1,685M
Total DnVol  1,994M
52wk Highs     436
52wk Lows       23
TRIN          0.98
PUT/CALL      0.71
*******************************************************************

Stocks Churn Ahead of Intel and Jobs Report
by James Brown

A slight majority of stocks turned around early morning weakness
on Wednesday to close mildly higher as major indices ended the
session near unchanged.  Uninspiring economic news coupled with
caution ahead of Intel's mid-quarter update on Thursday night and
the jobs report on Friday morning kept stocks in neutral.
Meanwhile the media coverage of the Walt Disney shareholder vote
to keep embattled CEO Michael Eisner reached a frenzied state.

Global markets were generally lower lead by a 277-point decline
in the Chinese Hang Seng index.  The U.S. dollar continued its
gains against the euro while trading close to unchanged versus
the yen.  Crude oil futures slipped 86 cents to $35.80 a barrel
after the U.S. Department of Energy and the American Petroleum
Institute reported a rise last week in crude oil supplies of 1.6
to 2.0 million barrels compared to previous estimates for a
decline.  Gold slipped $1.10 to $392.70 an ounce and copper
futures plummeted 5.1% to $1.301 a pound, erasing last week's
gains.

Market internals for the U.S. exchanges were mixed.  Advancing
stocks just edged past decliners by a narrow margin on the NYSE
while the A/D line was virtually even on the NASDAQ.  Overall
volume was soft but down volume outweighed up volume on both
exchanges.  The volatility indices traded higher on the early
morning weakness but reversed course as stocks pared their
losses.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average closed up 1.63 points to 10,593
and traded in a relatively tight 60-point range.  The index held
support at the 10,550 level and its 50-dma once again.  The S&P
500 followed the Dow with a 1.93-point gain to 1,151, regaining
all of this morning's losses and holding above support at its 40-
dma.  The tech-heavy NASDAQ was hampered by selling in the
semiconductor sector but only lost 6 points to close at 2033.
Trading in the NASDAQ Composite was limited to a 19-point range.
Insurance, biotechs and bank stocks were the strongest sectors
while investors rotated out of chips, Internets, networking and
hardware issues.

Chart of the DJIA:



Chart of the NASDAQ:



The major economic reports out this morning were the Institute
for Supply Management's non-manufacturing index (or services
index) and the Fed's Beige Book report.  The January ISM services
index came in at 65.7, a record high.  Economists were expecting
a drop to 63 percent in February.  The actual number was 60.8, a
bullish reading but worse than expected.  Readings over 50
indicate expansion and growth and February's 60.8 marks the 11th
consecutive month of growth for the services index.  On Monday
investors were encouraged by a better than expected reading in
the manufacturing sector's employment index.  Today's services
employment component slipped from 53.4 in January to 52.7 in
February, which bolsters the very cautious enthusiasm for this
Friday's employment report.

The Federal Reserve's Beige Book report, which reports on
economic conditions from the Fed's 12 regional districts, was
largely ignored.  The report was positive and suggested that
employment was improving albeit slowly.  Expectations for a
strong Q1 GDP number are still alive but no one seems to be
expecting any blow out job number gains.

Speaking of jobs Disney CEO Michael Eisner may be in for a
tougher fight than he thought to keep his.  Today was Disney's
annual shareholder meeting where investors voted to re-elect
Eisner.  Since Eisner was running unopposed for the top spot at
Disney dissidents seeking his removal made their voices known by
"withholding" their votes.  Of the 1.779 billion votes cast about
771.7 million or 43% of the vote elected to oust Eisner.  This
was an unprecedented occurrence and will likely force the Board
of Directors to reconsider their support for Eisner.  Adding to
the pressure to remove Eisner, who has lead Disney for 20 years,
was a statement from California's CalPERS pension fund who asked
Michael to step down by the end of the year.  Comcast Corp
(CMCSA), who issued an unsolicited bid to buy Disney a couple of
weeks ago, wasted no time and quickly issued a statement telling
the Disney board and shareholders that Disney's management should
meet with Comcast to reconsider their "generous" proposal.
Disney (DIS), a Dow component, lost 11 cents on the session to
close at $26.65.

Another Dow component doomed to suffer the spotlight tomorrow is
Intel Corp (INTC).  Intel will hold their mid-quarter update
Thursday after the closing bell.  Earlier this week on Monday a
J.P.Morgan analyst downgraded INTC due to slower notebook sales
and product delays.  JPM also suspects that Intel will not raise
guidance tomorrow for the first time in almost a year.  Setting
the tone was Xilinx's mid-quarter update on Tuesday night.
Xilinx, another semiconductor maker, only narrowed their guidance
to the top of their previous range and investors punished the
stock with a 3.99% loss today.  If Intel fails to raise guidance
or somehow inspire investors again Friday could be a very tough
session for tech stocks.  Caution ahead of tomorrow's meeting
drove both Intel and the SOX semiconductor index to a 1.89% loss.
Intel and the sector are likely to trade sideways to down
tomorrow and this could be a wet blanket on any attempted bounce
in the NASDAQ tomorrow.

I'm not expecting a lot of excitement tomorrow.  We do have a few
economic reports but nothing too inspiring.  The January Factory
Orders report is expected to dip 0.6% from December's 1.1% gain.
The Q4 productivity numbers are forecasted to rise 2.7%, which
would confirm an earlier preliminary reading.  The weekly initial
jobless claims are expected to drop 5,000 to 345,000 this week.
The real focus will remain on Intel's report Thursday night and
the Jobs report Friday morning.  Estimates are for unemployment
to remain unchanged at 5.6% while the non-farms payroll report is
expected to show a gain of 125,000 new jobs in February.  I would
hesitate to initiate new bullish positions, especially in tech
stocks until after the Jobs report.


************
FUTURES WRAP
************

Futures wrap is not emailed due to the excessive number of charts.
It may be read on the website at this address.

http://www.OptionInvestor.com/indexes/futureswrap.asp



********************
INDEX TRADER SUMMARY
********************

Some slippage, with SOX weakness

A rather positive Fed Beige Book report found the major indices
recovering from early session weakness, as continued signs of
economic growth, which wasn't too hot, helped waylay some fears
that the Fed would be quick to raise its fed funds rate.

Still, today's trade, especially in the tech-heavy NASDAQ-100
Index (NDX.X) 1,466.09 -0.49% certainly has our mid-August
historical test showing DIVERGENCE from the past, which at a
minimum would suggest any recovery for technology stocks in the
near-term will be more modest.

Market Snapshot / Internals - 03/03/04 Close



The major indices finished mixed, and the A/D line at both the
NYSE and NASDAQ was just about even.  While the 5-day NH/NL
ratios at both the NYSE and NASDAQ are above the 10-day NH/NL
average ratios, the NYSE 10-day average ratio slipped back to
96.4%, while the NASDAQ NH/NL 10-day ratio continues to edge
lower at 92.5%.  Nothing major from these indicators, but not
showing much bullish leadership.

U.S. Market Watch - 03/03/04 Close



Many of the equity sectors have seen rebounds the past 5-days.
In BLUE I've highlighted the NYSE Composite ($NYA.X) where we see
the 20-day % Net stronger than the NASDAQ Composite ($COMPX) 20-
day % net.  When I look at the 5-day % net, I begin to understand
that while the NYSE, or stronger broad market average has been
trying to anchor itself, the 1.39% rise in the COMPX gives the
impression we're seeing more of a relief bounce at this point,
and not a lot of bullish leadership.

Pivot Analysis Matrix -



The S&P 500 Index (SPX.X) and its tracker SPY came close to
testing their WEEKLY Pivots, but buyers were present just above
those levels.  This can really become a focal point of "market
support", where if violated, this support strength would be
further signal for weakness.  Note the S&P Banks (BIX.X) has also
not tested its WEEKLY/MONTHLY Pivots.

S&P 500 Index (SPX.X) - Daily Intervals



While we don't cover every sector in our pivot matrix, it becomes
rather evident that the S&P Banks Index (BIX.X) and more regional
banks, along with financials are providing stability for the SPX
above its WEEKLY Pivot of 1,143.68.

S&P 100 Index (OEX.X) Chart - Daily Intervals



I would be somewhat surprised if the OEX traded either side of
565-569 ahead of tomorrow's mid-quarter update from Intel
(NASDAQ:INTC) $29.04 -1.89%, where I would expect a rather
sideways "wait and see" type of trade from technology (outside of
biotech).  Trader and investors will monitor the
banks/financials, as that looks to be the leadership group with
greater weighting among the OEX/SPX.

Dow Industrials (INDU) Chart - Daily Intervals



I've placed two similar trends (dashed green and red) on the INDU
chart as done with the OEX chart.  Tonight's a good time to take
a snapshot of the price weighted INDU components, as the INDU's
close is right at correlative WEEKLY and MONTHLY pivots.

Imagine the INDU as if it were an inchworm, where the higher
PRICED stocks are the "head" and the lower priced stocks are at
the "tail," and those in the middle are the thorax.  What's going
on?

Dow 30 Components - Sorted by PRICE



I placed some green (strength) and red (weakness) arrows at the
5-day percentage change columns, where most of the near-term
strength has come from the tail, while the head, or larger price
weighted components have been doing little, as if trying to grab
hold, and let the tail inch its way higher.  The percentage
gainers and losers in the thorax section would look to be about a
dead heat.  This gives me the observation that the inchworm is
coiling or compressing, just as the Dow's bar chart looks.

What we can do with the above table, is use it as a benchmark in
time, and should the INDU break out of its range, we'll hopefully
be able to see if the HEAD leads a higher move, but more
importantly, if the HEAD loses its grip, which I think would make
for a sharper decline.

NASDAQ-100 Tracking Stock (AMEX:QQQ) - Daily Intervals



Large-cap NASDAQ (non financial) really showed outward DIVERGENCE
to my mid-April benchmark test in today's trade, where after a
gap lower open of $36.51, the was able to fill that gap back to
the upside intra-day, but that was it.  Closing breadth was
negative with 27 advancers and 73 decliners.  Intel's (INTC) mid-
quarter update may become very important for technology stocks in
the near-term if any bullishness above the downward trend is to
occur in coming weeks.  The $36.00 level remains a rather strong
support level for the QQQQ after the big break higher in late-
December, where I wouldn't think the QQQ would just collapse, but
I'm not seeing much sign of leadership from the more heavily
weighted components, or tech-based sectors to provide a big live
above $37.50.

Jeff Bailey


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The Option Investor Newsletter                Wednesday 03-03-2004
Copyright 2004, All rights reserved.                        2 of 2
Redistribution in any form strictly prohibited.


In Section Two:

Stop Loss Updates: RNR
Dropped Calls: None
Dropped Puts: None
Spreads, Combinations & Premium-Selling Plays: A Flat Ball Doesn't Bounce
   Very High!
Watch List: Homes, Medical, Telecom, Copper


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*****************
STOP-LOSS UPDATES
*****************

RNR (call)
 - raise stop from 50.84 to 52.00


*************
DROPPED CALLS
*************

None


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************
DROPPED PUTS
************


None


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success.

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*********************************************
SPREADS, COMBINATIONS & PREMIUM-SELLING PLAYS
*********************************************

A Flat Ball Doesn't Bounce Very High!
By Ray Cummins

Stocks recovered from early losses Wednesday but the rebound was
lackluster as the major equity averages ended near the previous
day's levels on light volume.

The Dow Jones Industrials Average climbed 1 point to 10,593 amid
renewed weakness in Alcoa (NYSE:AA), General Motors (NYSE:GM),
Merck (NYSE:MRK), International Business Machines (NYSE:IBM)),
Hewlett-Packard (NYSE:HPQ) and Walt Disney (NYSE:DIS).  Intel
(NASDAQ:INTC) was among the NASDAQ's biggest bears, leading the
technology index 6 points lower to 2,033.  The S&P 500 index was
up 1 point at 1,151 on strength in retail, waste management, and
medical equipment shares.  In the broader market, decliners edged
past advancers on inactive volume of 1.33 billion shares.  Market
breadth was roughly even on the NASDAQ, where 1.79 billion shares
were crossed.  U.S. bond prices continued their recent slump on
expectations of higher rates.  The yield on the benchmark 10-year
Treasury note fell 3/32, with its yield rising to 4.05%.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
UPCOMING EVENTS - CHANGES TO NEWSLETTER CONTENT
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

They say "nothing lasts forever" and that statement was never more
accurate than with regard to finance and publishing.  But, despite
the psychological comfort of a repetitious cycle, sometimes change
is a "good" thing.  I truly hope that is the case with the current
situation at the OIN, where we have decided to make some major
adjustments to the content in this portion of the newsletter.
Obviously, the primary catalyst for the changes is the readership,
whose desires were made very clear after our recent request for
"favorite" strategies.  In addition, the editors of each section
have identified areas they think need improvement or modification,
and there are also some personnel issues to contend with such as
time limitations due to "life events" among members of the staff.
With that in mind, we will no longer be offering covered-calls on
a weekly basis, but rather once-a-month, which is really the best
timeframe for our (in-the-money) approach to the strategy.  The
Spreads & Combos editor will now focus on vertical spreads and
"premium-selling" positions in both the Wednesday and Saturday
editions, however neutral-outlook debit straddles will also be
added to the bi-weekly content as market conditions permit.  The
summaries for the core strategies will slowly be combined (credit
spreads this week) thus providing more-timely observations with
regard to position exits and adjustments.  In the future, we hope
to publish "supplemental play" data to replace some of the omitted
strategies, such as calendar spreads and synthetic positions, and
further augment the current number of candidates for combination
plays.  Among the new (and recurring) additions will be monthly
credit spreads on the OEX and SPX, and some longer-term plays in
all categories.  One final adjustment will occur in April, when
the "Premium-Selling" section moves to Tuesday afternoon, thus
providing candidates for Wednesday's market session.

Your thoughts are always valued as they guide our policy decisions
and determine our subject matter.  Please don't hesitate to send
your comments and suggestions to:

Questions & comments on spreads/combos to Contact Support

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
SUMMARY OF CURRENT POSITIONS - AS OF 03/02/04
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The following summary is a reasonable account of the positions
previously offered in this section.  However, no representation
is being made as to the actual performance of a position and in
fact, there are frequently large differences between the summary
results and those of our subscribers, due to the variety of ways
in which each play can be opened, closed, and/or adjusted.  In
addition, the summary might not be completely representative of
the manner in which the average trader would react to changing
conditions in a position and to the options market in general.
The editor of this section does not take actual positions in any
published plays and the summary comments are simply a service to
help new traders understand when positions might be opened and
closed.  In most cases, actions taken based on the commentary
would be far too late to be effective, thus it is not intended
as a substitute for personal trade management nor does it in
any way replace your duty to diligently monitor and manage the
positions in your portfolio.


MONTHLY YIELD FOR UNCOVERED OPTIONS: MAXIMUM & SIMPLE

The Maximum Yield (listed in the summary and with "naked" option
selling plays) is the greatest possible profit available in the
position.  This amount, expressed as a percentage, is based on
the initial margin requirement as determined by the Board of
Governors of the Federal Reserve, the U.S. options markets and
other self-regulatory organizations.  Although increased margin
requirements may be imposed either generally or in individual
cases by various brokerage firms, our calculations use the widely
accepted margin formulas from the Chicago Board Options Exchange.
The "Simple Yield" is based on the cost of the underlying issue
(in the event of assignment), including the premium from the sold
option, thus it reflects the maximum potential loss in the trade.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

NAKED PUTS

Stock   Strike Strike Cost   Current   Gain    Max    Simple
Symbol  Month  Price  Basis   Price   (Loss)  Yield   Yield

IDCC     MAR    20    19.55   26.75    0.45   6.66%    2.30%
LSCP     MAR    17    17.10   24.70    0.40   6.20%    2.34%
PCLN     MAR    22    21.70   22.47    0.77   7.56%    3.69% *
AMLN     MAR    20    19.55   24.22    0.45   6.42%    2.30%
ATRX     MAR    22    22.05   26.95    0.45   6.79%    2.04%
BRCM     MAR    37    36.95   42.01    0.55   4.29%    1.49%
IDCC     MAR    22    22.10   26.75    0.40   5.88%    1.81%
OSTK     MAR    20    19.35   31.89    0.65  10.25%    3.36%
NEOL     MAR    17    16.95   20.72    0.55  10.48%    3.24%
RMBS     MAR    30    28.90   31.95    1.10  10.64%    3.81%
SMTC     MAR    22    22.15   24.08    0.35   4.58%    1.58%
ADEX     MAR    20    19.55   21.70    0.45   8.22%    2.30%
ALXN     MAR    20    19.70   24.20    0.30   6.05%    1.52%
APPX     MAR    30    29.70   36.41    0.30   4.59%    1.01%
ATRX     MAR    22    22.20   26.95    0.30   6.03%    1.35%
MRVL     MAR    37    37.10   44.74    0.40   4.40%    1.08%
NEOL     MAR    17    17.30   20.72    0.20   5.25%    1.16%
OSTK     MAR    20    19.70   31.89    0.30   6.70%    1.52%
SEPR     MAR    17    17.25   45.71    0.25   5.37%    1.45%

Priceline.com (NASDAQ:PCLN) was a candidate for "early exit"
during last week's slump.


NAKED CALLS

Stock   Strike Strike Cost   Current   Gain    Max    Simple
Symbol  Month  Price  Basis   Price   (Loss)  Yield   Yield

AAII     MAR    25    25.40    9.87    0.40   7.47%    1.57%
CMTL     MAR    35    35.45   28.35    0.45   7.46%    1.27%
FLML     MAR    35    35.35   25.38    0.35   6.02%    0.99%
MHS      MAR    35    35.45   31.87    0.45   4.40%    1.27%
CECO     MAR    55    55.50   50.45    0.50   4.96%    0.90%
ECLG     MAR    22    22.85   19.15    0.35  10.15%    1.53%
ESI      MAR    50    50.30   36.52    0.30   4.96%    0.60%


PUT-CREDIT SPREADS

Symbol  Pick   Last   Month L/P S/P Credit  C/B    G/L   Status

CERN    46.09  47.55   MAR  35  40   0.60  39.40   0.60   Open
DNA     98.25 105.25   MAR  85  90   0.70  89.30   0.70   Open
ESRX    70.58  74.41   MAR  60  65   0.65  64.35   0.65   Open
NBR     46.97  47.48   MAR  40  42   0.25  42.25   0.25   Open
BSX     41.94  42.20   MAR  35  37   0.25  37.25   0.25   Open
CEC     51.62  55.35   MAR  45  50   0.55  49.45   0.55   Open
ONXX    36.80  38.08   MAR  30  35   0.55  34.45   0.55   Open
OSTK    29.27  31.89   MAR  22  25   0.30  24.70   0.30   Open
RYL     85.72  87.64   MAR  75  80   0.50  79.50   0.50   Open
GS     107.09 106.40   MAR  95 100   0.65  99.35   0.65   Open
MSTR    64.78  62.85   MAR  50  55   0.55  54.45   0.55   Open
MICC    22.06  22.09   MAR  17  19   0.12  18.63   0.12   Open
VIP     83.25  86.80   MAR  70  75   0.65  74.35   0.65   Open
GDT     69.79  68.71   MAR  60  65   0.65  64.35   0.65   Open
MTH     71.09  77.40   MAR  60  65   0.70  64.30   0.70   Open

L/P = Long Put  S/P = Short Put  CB = Cost Basis  G/L = Gain/Loss

Synopsys (NASDAQ:SNPS) has previously been closed to limit losses.


CALL-CREDIT SPREADS

Symbol  Pick   Last   Month L/C S/C Credit  C/B    G/L   Status

CYBX    27.04  24.65   MAR  35  30   0.65  30.65   0.65   Open
SOHU    29.05  28.93   MAR  40  35   0.60  35.60   0.60   Open
KLAC    54.24  53.50   MAR  65  60   0.60  60.60   0.60   Open
IACI    31.92  32.18   MAR  37  35   0.30  35.30   0.30   Open
NVLS    33.26  31.94   MAR  40  37   0.30  37.80   0.30   Open
BBBY    40.62  40.97   MAR  45  42   0.30  42.80   0.30   Open
OSIP    31.39  35.40   MAR  40  35   0.55  35.55   0.15  Closed
LLTC    40.03  39.61   MAR  45  42   0.25  42.75   0.25   Open
PIXR    65.76  67.05   MAR  75  70   0.55  70.55   0.55   Open
SFNT    37.96  38.15   MAR  45  40   0.60  40.60   0.60   Open
MGAM    19.32  24.52   MAR  25  22   0.25  22.75  (1.77) Closed
UTEK    26.28  24.94   MAR  35  30   0.60  30.60   0.60   Open
AMZN    44.87  42.01   MAR  55  50   0.50  50.50   0.50   Open
CTAS    42.77  44.14   MAR  50  45   0.60  45.60   0.60   Open
CCU     43.44  43.61   MAR  50  45   0.60  45.60   0.60   Open
ICOS    37.53  38.46   MAR  45  40   0.50  40.50   0.50   Open

L/C = Long Call  S/C = Short Call  CB = Cost Basis  G/L = Gain/Loss

Conservative traders should have closed the bearish positions in
Multimedia Gaming (NASDAQ:MGAM) and OSI Pharma (NASDAQ:OSIP) when
the underlying issues moved above their respective sold calls.
Cintas (NASDAQ:CTAS) and Icos (NASDAQ:ICOS) are now on the "watch"
list.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
NEW POSITIONS
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

This following group of plays is simply a list of candidates to
supplement your search for profitable trading positions.  As with
any new investment, you must decide if the selections meet your
criteria for potential plays.  Only you can know what strategies
are suitable for your personal skill level, risk-reward tolerance
and portfolio outlook.  In addition, we recommend that you avoid
any trading techniques in which you are not completely comfortable
with the potential capital loss, the necessary adjustments, and
the common entry-exit strategies.  The positions with "*" will be
included in the weekly summary.  Those with "TS" (Target-Shoot)
are below our minimum monthly return, but may offer a favorable
entry price with a limit order, due to the daily volatility of
the underlying issue.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

BULLISH PLAYS - NAKED PUTS

All of these issues have robust option premiums and relatively
favorable technical indications.  However, current news and market
sentiment will have an effect on these stocks, so review each play
thoroughly and make your own decision about its future outcome.

WARNING: THE RISK IN SELLING UNCOVERED OPTIONS IS SUBSTANTIAL!

The sale of uncovered puts entails considerable financial risk,
far more than the initial margin or collateral required to open
a position.  The maximum financial obligation for the sale of a
naked put is the strike price (of the underlying stock) that is
sold.  Although this obligation is reduced by the premium from
the sale of the option, a writer of puts should have the cash or
collateral equivalent of the sold strike price in reserve at all
times.  In addition, there is one very important rule when using
this strategy: Don't sell puts on stocks that you don't want to
own!  Why?  Because stocks occasionally experience catastrophic
declines, exponentially increasing the margin maintenance and
possibly causing a devastating shortfall in your portfolio.  It
is also important that you consider using trading stops on naked
option positions to help limit losses when a stock's price falls.
Many professional traders suggest closing the position when the
underlying share value moves below the sold strike, or using a
"buy-to-close" stop order at a price that is no more than twice
the original premium received from the sold option.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

ADEX - ADE Corporation  $23.01  *** A Big Day! ***

ADE Corporation (NASDAQ:ADEX) is engaged in the design, building,
marketing and service of production metrology and inspection
systems for the semiconductor wafer, semiconductor device,
magnetic data storage and optics manufacturing industries.  The
company's products have evolved from single instruments used in
offline engineering analysis to full, 100% inline, automated
metrology solutions throughout the wafer, semiconductor device
and hard disk drive manufacturing processes.  Its systems analyze
and report product quality at critical manufacturing process steps,
sort wafers and disks and provide manufacturers with certification
data upon which they rely to manage processes and accept incoming
material.  Semiconductor wafer, device and magnetic data storage
manufacturers use the firm's systems to improve yield and capital
productivity.

ADEX - ADE Corporation  $23.01

PLAY (sell naked put):

Action    Month &   Option    Open   Last  Cost    Max.  Simple
Req'd     Strike    Symbol    Int.   Price Basis  Yield  Yield

SELL PUT  MAR 22.5  QDE OX     86    0.70  21.80  14.2%   3.2%
SELL PUT  APR 20    QDE PD     15    0.55  19.45   5.6%   2.8% *
SELL PUT  APR 22.5  QDE PX      0    1.50  21.00  10.2%   7.1%


__________________________________________________________________

ALXN - Alexion  $24.54  *** Near 2-Year Highs! ***

Alexion Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:ALXN) develops pharmaceutical
products for the treatment of heart disease, inflammation, cancer
and diseases of the immune system.  The company's two lead product
candidates are genetically altered antibodies that target specific
diseases that arise when the human immune system induces undesired
1inflammation in the human body.  Alexion's product candidates are
designed to block components of the human immune system that cause
undesired inflammation while allowing beneficial components of the
immune system to remain functional.

ALXN - Alexion  $24.54

PLAY (sell naked put):

Action    Month &   Option    Open   Last  Cost    Max.  Simple
Req'd     Strike    Symbol    Int.   Price Basis  Yield  Yield

SELL PUT  MAR 22.5  XQN OX     10    0.45  22.05  10.4%   2.0% *
SELL PUT  APR 20    XQN PD      0    0.30  19.70   3.7%   1.5% TS
SELL PUT  APR 22.5  XQN PX     11    0.90  21.60   7.2%   4.2%


__________________________________________________________________

KMRT - Kmart Corporation  $32.68  *** Technical Break-Out? ***

Kmart Corporation (NASDAQ:KMRT) is a discount retailer and a
general merchandise retailer.  The firm operates in the general
merchandise retailing industry through 1,829 Kmart discount
stores with locations in all 50 states, Puerto Rico, the United
States Virgin Islands and Guam, as of January 29, 2003, and
through its e-commerce shopping site, www.kmart.com.  In May
2003, the company emerged from Chapter 11 protection.

KMRT - Kmart Corporation  $32.68

PLAY (sell naked put):

Action    Month &   Option    Open   Last  Cost    Max.  Simple
Req'd     Strike    Symbol    Int.   Price Basis  Yield  Yield

SELL PUT  MAR 30    KTQ OF    1959   0.35  29.65   6.2%   1.2% *
SELL PUT  APR 30    KTQ PF       0   1.10  28.90   6.6%   3.8%


__________________________________________________________________

NEOL - NeoPharm  $20.66  *** Pure Premium-Selling! ***

NeoPharm (NASDAQ:NEOL) is a biopharmaceutical company engaged
in the research, development and commercialization of drugs for
the treatment of various cancers.  The firm has built its drug
portfolio based on its novel proprietary technology platforms,
the proprietary NeoLipid liposomal drug delivery system and a
tumor-targeting toxin platform.  NeoPharm has several promising
compounds in various stages of development.  The company's lead
compound is IL13-PE38, a tumor-targeting toxin being developed
as a treatment for glioblastoma multiforme, a deadly form of
brain cancer.

NEOL - NeoPharm  $20.66

PLAY (sell naked put):

Action    Month &   Option    Open   Last  Cost    Max.  Simple
Req'd     Strike    Symbol    Int.   Price Basis  Yield  Yield

SELL PUT  MAR 17.5  UOE OW     254   0.20  17.30   7.2%   1.2%
SELL PUT  MAR 20    UOE OD      65   0.75  19.25  17.1%   3.9%
SELL PUT  APR 15    UOE PC    2710   0.45  14.55   6.8%   3.1% *


__________________________________________________________________

OSTK - Overstock.com  $32.42  *** Up, Up & Away! ***

Overstock.com (NASDAQ:OSTK) is an online "closeout" retailer
offering discount, brand-name merchandise for sale primarily
over the Internet.  The company's merchandise offerings include
bed-and-bath goods, kitchenware, watches, jewelry, electronics,
sporting goods and designer accessories.  Overstock offers its
customers an opportunity to shop for bargains conveniently,
while offering an alternative inventory liquidation distribution
channel to its suppliers.  The company typically offers around
5,000 non-media products and over 100,000 media products (books,
CDs, DVDs, video cassettes and video games) in seven departments
on its Websites, www.overstock.com, www.overstockb2b.com and
www.worldstock.com.

OSTK - Overstock.com  $32.42

PLAY (sell naked put):

Action    Month &   Option    Open   Last  Cost    Max.  Simple
Req'd     Strike    Symbol    Int.   Price Basis  Yield  Yield

SELL PUT  MAR 25    QKT OE    2139   0.35  24.65   9.7%   1.4% *
SELL PUT  MAR 30    QKT OF     890   1.25  28.75  20.1%   4.3%
SELL PUT  APR 22.5  QKT PX     277   0.50  22.00   4.9%   2.3%


__________________________________________________________________

PBY - Pep Boys  $23.98  *** Entry Point? ***

Pep Boys -- Manny, Moe & Jack (NYSE:PBY) is engaged primarily in
the retail sale of automotive parts and accessories, automotive
maintenance and service and the installation of parts through a
chain of stores.  The company operated its stores in 36 states
and Puerto Rico and its primary operating unit is its Supercenter
format.  Its operates over 600 Supercenters and one Service and
Tire Center, having an aggregate of 6,527 service bays, as well
as 12 non-service/non-tire format Pep Boys Express stores.  The
Supercenters serve "do-it-yourself" (retail) and "do-it-for-me"
(service labor, installed merchandise and tires) customers.

PBY - Pep Boys  $23.98

PLAY (sell naked put):

Action    Month &   Option    Open   Last  Cost    Max.  Simple
Req'd     Strike    Symbol    Int.   Price Basis  Yield  Yield

SELL PUT  MAR 22.5  PBY OX    1041   0.35  22.15   7.9%   1.6% *
SELL PUT  APR 22.5  PBY PX      62   0.80  21.70   6.2%   3.7%


__________________________________________________________________

PKZ - PetroKazakhstan  $27.65  *** Another "All-Time" High! ***

PetroKazakhstan (NYSE:PKZ), formerly Hurricane Hydrocarbons,
is an integrated, international energy group engaged in the
exploration for, development and production of oil and gas, the
refining of oil and the sale of oil and refined products.  For
2003, production averaged 151,349 barrels of oil per day (bopd),
an increase of 11% over 2002.  During 2003, the firm completed a
large number of key projects, drilled five appraisal wells and
hydraulically fracture stimulated one additional well.  Further
fracture stimulation is planned on two other wells in 2004.

PKZ - PetroKazakhstan  $27.65

PLAY (sell naked put):

Action    Month &   Option    Open   Last  Cost    Max.  Simple
Req'd     Strike    Symbol    Int.   Price Basis  Yield  Yield

SELL PUT  MAR 25    PKZ OE    668    0.40  24.60   8.6%   1.6% *
SELL PUT  APR 25    PKZ PE    120    0.70  24.30   5.3%   2.9%



~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

BULLISH PLAYS - CREDIT SPREADS

These candidates are based on the underlying issue's technical
history or trend.  The probability of profit in these positions
may also be higher than other plays in the same strategy, due to
small disparities in option pricing however, each play should be
evaluated for portfolio suitability and reviewed with regard to
your strategic approach and trading style.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

APOL - Apollo Group  $77.82  *** Uptrend Intact! ***

Apollo Group (NASDAQ:APOL) provides higher education to working
adults.  The company operates through its subsidiaries, The
University of Phoenix, Institute for Professional Development,
The College for Financial Planning Institutes Corporation and
Western International University.  The company offers its many
programs and services at over 65 campuses and more than 100
learning centers in the United States, Puerto Rico and Vancouver,
British Columbia.

APOL - Apollo Group  $77.82

PLAY (conservative - bullish/credit spread):

BUY  PUT  APR-65.00  OAQ-PM  OI=573  ASK=$0.35
SELL PUT  APR-70.00  OAQ-PN  OI=272  BID=$1.05
INITIAL NET-CREDIT TARGET=$0.70-$0.75
POTENTIAL PROFIT(max)=16% B/E=$69.30


__________________________________________________________________

S - Sears, Roebuck & Co.  $48.35  *** Consolidation Complete? ***

Sears, Roebuck & Co. (NYSE:S) is a multi-line retail chain that
offers an array of merchandise and related services.  The company
is organized into four principal business segments: retail and
related services, credit and financial products, corporate and
other and Sears Canada.  The company has 872 full-line stores and
over 1,300 specialty stores spread across the United States.  It
conducts similar retail, credit and corporate operations in Canada
through Sears Canada.  In 2002, Sears acquired Lands' End, Inc.,
a Headquartered in Dodgeville, Wisconsin, Lands' End is was direct
merchant of traditionally styled casual clothing for men, women
and children, accessories, footwear, home products and soft
luggage.

S - Sears, Roebuck & Co.  $48.35

PLAY (conservative - bullish/credit spread):

BUY  PUT  APR-42.50  S-PT  OI=1768  ASK=$0.30
SELL PUT  APR-45.00  S-PI  OI=1966  BID=$0.60
INITIAL NET-CREDIT TARGET=$0.35-$0.40
POTENTIAL PROFIT(max)=16% B/E=$44.65



~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

BEARISH PLAYS - NAKED CALLS

Based on analysis of option pricing and the underlying stock's
technical background, these positions meet our fundamental
criteria for bearish "premium-selling" strategies.  Each issue
has robust option premiums, a well-defined resistance area and
a high probability of remaining below the target strike prices.
As with any recommendations, these positions should be carefully
evaluated for portfolio suitability and reviewed with regard to
your strategic approach and personal trading style.

WARNING: THE RISK IN SELLING UNCOVERED OPTIONS IS SUBSTANTIAL!

The sale of uncovered calls entails considerable financial risk,
far more than the initial margin or collateral required to open
the position.  The maximum financial obligation for the sale of a
naked option is the strike price (of the underlying stock) that
is sold.  Although this obligation is reduced by the premium from
the sale of the option, a writer of options must have the cash or
collateral equivalent of the sold strike price in reserve at all
times.  The simple fact is: stocks often experience large price
swings, exponentially increasing the margin maintenance and very
possibly causing a devastating shortfall in your portfolio.  It
is also important that you consider using trading stops on naked
option positions to help limit losses when a stock price moves in
a volatile manner.  Many professional traders suggest closing the
position when the underlying share value moves beyond the sold
strike, or using a "buy-to-close" stop order at a price that is no
more than twice the original premium received from the sold option.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

ISSI - Integrated Silicon  $16.40  *** In A Trading Range? ***

Integrated Silicon Solution (NASDAQ:ISSI) designs, develops and
markets memory products for networking, Internet infrastructure,
telecommunications, wireless products, handheld devices, computer
peripherals and automotive electronics.  Its products incorporate
circuit design and advanced process technology.  The company's
high-speed and low-power SRAMs, low- to medium-density DRAMs and
its family of electrically erasable programmable ROMs enable
designers to meet demanding connectivity, portability and
bandwidth requirements.  In addition, ISSI provides multi-chip
packages combining Flash and SRAM (MCP), Bluetooth wireless
chipsets and parallel search processors or content addressable
memories (CAM) in development.

ISSI - Integrated Silicon  $16.40

PLAY (sell naked call):

Action     Month &   Option    Open   Last  Cost    Max.  Simple
Req'd      Strike    Symbol    Int.   Price Basis  Yield  Yield

SELL CALL  MAR 17.5  IUH CW     933   0.35  17.85  11.5%   2.0% *
SELL CALL  APR 20    IUH DD       0   0.25  20.25   4.9%   1.2% TS
SELL CALL  APR 17.5  IUH DW      73   0.85  18.35   9.3%   4.6%


__________________________________________________________________

SEAC - SeaChange Intl.  $15.62  *** Sell-Off Underway! ***

SeaChange International (NASDAQ:SEAC) is a developer, manufacturer
and marketer video storage servers that automate the management
and distribution of long-form video streams, such as movies or
other feature presentations, and short-form video streams, such
as advertisements.  The company sells its products and services to
cable system operators, telecommunications companies and broadcast
television companies.  Using its systems, the company's customers
can increase their revenues by offering additional services, such
as video-on-demand and subscription video-on-demand programming,
both of which allow subscribers to watch content at any time with
pause, rewind and fast forward features.

SEAC - SeaChange Intl.  $15.62

PLAY (sell naked call):

Action     Month &   Option    Open   Last  Cost    Max.  Simple
Req'd      Strike    Symbol    Int.   Price Basis  Yield  Yield

SELL CALL  MAR 17.5  UEG CW     281   0.20  17.70   8.3%   1.1%
SELL CALL  APR 20    UEG DD     531   0.40  20.40   7.8%   2.0% *
SELL CALL  APR 17.5  UEG DW     733   0.90  18.40  11.8%   4.9%



~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

BEARISH PLAYS - CREDIT SPREADS

All of these positions are favorable candidates for "bear-call"
credit spreads, based on the current price or trading range of
the underlying issue and its recent technical history or trend.
The probability of profit from these positions may be higher
than other plays in the same strategy, due to disparities in
option pricing.  However, current news and market sentiment will
have an effect on these issues, so review each play individually
and make your own decision about its future outcome.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

DISH - EchoStar  $35.50  *** Next Leg Down? ***

EchoStar Communications (NASDAQ:DISH) operates through two major
business units, the DISH Network and EchoStar Technologies.  The
DISH Network offers a direct broadcast satellite subscription TV
service across the United States with millions of DISH Network
subscribers.  EchoStar Technologies Corporation is engaged in the
design, development, distribution and sale of DBS set-top boxes,
antennae and other digital equipment for the DISH Network and the
design, development and distribution of similar equipment for a
range of international satellite service providers.

DISH - EchoStar  $35.50

PLAY (conservative - bearish/credit spread):

BUY  CALL  APR-42.50  UAB-DT  OI=66   ASK=$0.30
SELL CALL  APR-40.00  UAB-DH  OI=403  BID=$0.55
INITIAL NET-CREDIT TARGET=$0.30-$0.35
POTENTIAL PROFIT(max)=14% B/E=$40.30


__________________________________________________________________

NVLS - Novellus Systems  $31.15  *** Chip Sector Slump! ***

Novellus Systems (NASDAQ:NVLS) manufactures, sells and services
semiconductor processing equipment.  The company's products are
comprised primarily of advanced systems used to deposit thin
conductive and insulating films on semiconductor devices, as well
as equipment for preparing the device surface prior to these
deposition processes.  Novellus is a supplier of high productivity
deposition and surface preparation systems used in the fabrication
of integrated circuits.  Chemical Vapor Deposition systems employ
a chemical plasma to deposit all of the dielectric (insulating)
layers and certain of the metal (conductive) layers on the surface
of a semiconductor wafer.  Physical Vapor Deposition systems are
used to deposit conductive metal layers by sputtering metallic
atoms from the surface of a target source via high DC power.
Electrofill systems are used for depositing copper conductive
layers in a dual damascene design architecture using an aqueous
solution.

NVLS - Novellus Systems  $31.15

PLAY (conservative - bearish/credit spread):

BUY  CALL  APR-37.50  NLQ-DU  OI=2367  ASK=$0.30
SELL CALL  APR-35.00  NLQ-DG  OI=1610  BID=$0.60
INITIAL NET-CREDIT TARGET=$0.35-$0.40
POTENTIAL PROFIT(max)=16% B/E=$35.35




**********
Watch List
**********

___________________________________________________________________

How to use this watch list:
  Readers can use the candidates below as a springboard for their
  own research.  Many are in the process of breaking support or
  resistance or in the process of starting new trends or
  extending old ones.  With your own due diligence these could be
  strong potential plays.
___________________________________________________________________


Hovnanian Enterprises - HOV - close: 84.70 change: +0.27

WHAT TO WATCH:  We remain bullish on the homebuilders and believe
the group offers a lot of potential.  Traders bought the dip
today in many of the well-known names.  We like HOV because the
stock still has room to catch up to its peers as they all trade
towards their December highs or make new all-time highs.  Volume
has been strong in the HOV rally these last several sessions (not
including today).  If you expect short-term weakness then look
for another dip to consider entries.  We think the stock is a
good candidate for a run toward the $90 level.

Chart=


---

Varian Medical Systems - VAR - close: 86.19 change: +1.59

WHAT TO WATCH:  VAR is breaking out to new highs over resistance
at $86.00 after the FDA gave them clearance today for a tumor
imaging system.  The move higher in shares of VAR comes after
five weeks of consolidation in the $80-86 range.  Its technicals
are turning positive and its P&F chart just produced a new
bullish buy signal.  We'd consider new longs here with a stop
under $82.  More conservative traders may want to consider stops
under the 21-dma, where VAR has found support the last three
sessions (near $83.50).

Chart=


---

Telephone & Data Systems - TDS - close: 74.04 change: -0.39

WHAT TO WATCH:  TDS, better known as TDS Telecom, has seen its
stock trend steadily higher from its March 2003 low.  TDS paused
to consolidate sideways above $60.00 form October-December and
2004 started the rally again.  Thus the stock is very long-term
overbought but traders continue to buy the dips.  We think TDS is
a good candidate for a move toward the $79-80 level, which was
support back in 2000 and 2002.

Chart=


---

Phelps Dodge - PD - close: 84.80 change: -2.85

WHAT TO WATCH:  Shares of PD have fallen for two sessions in a
row on profit taking after making a nice run from $80 to $90 in a
six day period.  Today's profit taking was spurred by a 5% drop
in copper futures.  We've expressed interest in catching a pull
back to the $85 or 10-dma as a potential entry point for new
bullish positions but given the sharp drop in copper today we're
now concerned that PD could have farther to fall.  Nimble traders
might want to try and scalp a move down toward the $80 level but
it's not recommended.  We're going to be patient and look for PD
to pull back toward its simple 50-dma again as a potential
bullish entry point.

Chart=



-----------------------------------
RADAR SCREEN - more stocks to watch
-----------------------------------

OCR $46.60 +0.51 - Traders bought the dip to $45.50 on Wednesday
and OCR looks ready to make new highs.  Take caution, its P&F
target has been achieved.

CBSS $42.23 +0.26 - The banking sector continues to show strength
and shares of CBSS set another new all-time high.

OHP $48.45 +0.54 - The bounce from its 50-dma looks tempting but
Oxford Health has resistance at the $50.00 mark.  Aggressive
traders can evaluate positions now with a stop under the $45
level.

BWA $90.49 -0.58 - BWA was on our Radar screen this weekend and
we continue to watch it for a breakdown under the $90.00 mark.
Shares pierced this level today but managed a rebound back above
this round-number support-resistance level.  Take note - its MACD
is suggesting the stock is short-term oversold and overdue for a
larger bounce.

BGP $24.41 +0.16 - BGP is trying to breakout above multi-year
resistance at $24.50.

COH $42.47 +0.35 - The breakout over resistance at $40.00 was
fueled by strong volume.  Looks tempting.

DST $45.39 +0.24 - The bullish breakout over resistance at $44.00
was impressive and traders bought the dip today toward the 44.50
level.  There is little resistance between here and the $50 mark.



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