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Daily Newsletter, Wednesday, 10/15/2014

Table of Contents

  1. Market Wrap
  2. New Option Plays
  3. In Play Updates and Reviews

Market Wrap

Increasing Volatility

by Keene Little

Click here to email Keene Little
The trading volume has been picking up in the past week and the selling has been getting stronger. The market is either in the middle of a crash lower or is showing signs of a capitulation bottom. We'll know which by the end of the week.

Wednesday's Market Stats

The wild ride continues in the markets and it seems to be getting exacerbated by opex this week. Trading volume is spiking to highs we haven't seen for two years. And the price swings are getting wilder, especially when you include the overnight action in the futures, which accounts for some of the activity in overseas markets. SPX dropped 78 points between yesterday's high and today's low before recovering 48 of those points this afternoon (and before giving back 6 of those points into the close). We're getting moves that we haven't seen in the past 3 years so it's clearly a more volatile market than most participants are used to seeing (they certainly got lulled into believing the nice smooth rally would just continue forever, hence all the bullish upgrades at the September high).

Things were not looking good for the bulls by midday today. The DOW was down -460 points (more than 600 points from yesterday's high) and the decline looked like it was accelerating (waterfalling). But someone said "enough!" and started buying and the DOW erased 330 points of its loss just before the close and before dropping back down about 40 points in the final few minutes. With the high volume and v-bottom reversal we're now left to wonder if today marked a turning point.

At today's lows the broader averages, except NDX, were in the red for the year. The afternoon recovery leaves just the DOW Industrials, NYSE, W5000 and the RUT in the red for the year. Each had lost at least -10% by the afternoon lows and that might have helped trigger some buy programs that then started some short covering.

There was some serious trading volume today, as highlighted in the table above. I get my numbers out of yahoo's finance section and the total volume that I typically see is in the low 5000M range. It's been spiking up in the past week and it's indicative of either a market crash in progress or it could be part of a capitulation bottom. The market is certainly oversold but we have to keep in mind that market crashes come out of oversold conditions. So it's risky to go bottom fishing.

Interestingly though, take a look at the down volume vs. up volume and declining issues vs. advancing issues -- there was a little more down volume but a virtual tie between the advancing and declining issues. A lot of today's volume was going into buying, which looks like smart money might be buying inventory from the retail crowd that's puking up their stock in this selloff. I have no other evidence of that happening but I was surprised to see the numbers so close.

A visual perspective of volume is shown on the SPY daily chart below. When we've had volume spikes in the past it's usually been a good indication we had capitulation into a low that was then followed by the resumption of the rally. The caution here is that these capitulation (high-volume) days were in a bull market trend and if we're no longer in a bull market then the stronger selling could be just getting started. A lot of today's volume no doubt came from opex plays, specifically hedging long positions (such as shorting SPY to hedge short puts). These hedging plays are one reason why we often see a reversal of direction at least on the following Monday after opex week.

SPY daily chart with volume

Note on the daily chart of SPY above that price broke the uptrend line from March 2009 - October 2011. The bulls will see a close above price-level support at 185 and at support at its long-term uptrend line, near 186.40 (intraday breaks don't count). The bears will see a break of the uptrend line followed by a bounce back up to it for what is a back-test to be followed by a bearish kiss goodbye with more selling on Thursday. Is the market going to pick Door #1, Door #2 or Door #3 (consolidate and keep both sides guessing)?

I'm going to start tonight's chart review with the DOW's monthly chart because the decline from September has now reached an important level and what happens from here is going to provide us with some longer-term clues. I've shown the monthly chart before and as you can see below, the DOW has rolled over from the trend line along the highs from 2000-2007 and it has dropped out of its large rising wedge pattern for the 3-wave rally off the 2009 low. The break of the rising wedge is what is bearish since rising wedges tend to be completely retraced faster than it took to build them. I show a projection down to about 5600 by mid-2017 (there are other timing cycles that point to mid-2016 as the end of the bear, including retracing the rising wedge in half the time it took to build it).

Dow Industrials, INDU, Monthly chart

The DOW has now dropped back down to a long-term trend line along the highs from 1971-1972-1987, currently near 15860 (today's low was 15855), which is where the decline into the 2002 low found support. It was broken in 2008, became resistance at the April-May 2011 highs, was recovered in March 2013 and then became support when back-tested in August 2013. This is the first time since then that the DOW is back down to the line. From a bullish perspective this is another back-test that will lead to new market highs. I don't believe that will happen because of the breakdown from the rising wedge but it could certainly be good enough for a big bounce.

The weekly chart below shows a shorter-term rising wedge following the December 2013 high, with the bottom of the wedge being the uptrend line from October 2011 - November 2012. Last week's selloff was also a strong break back below the trend line along the highs from 2000-2007, near 16850. You can see the multiple bounces off the longer-term uptrend line from 1971-1972-1987 back in 2013 so it's a trend line that's getting attention, including at today's low.

Dow Industrials, INDU, Weekly chart

On the weekly chart above, which is using the log price scale (generally better to use on a longer-term chart, especially when using trend lines/channels), the uptrend line from October 2011 was broken last week. Switching to the arithmetic price scale on the daily chart below, switching places with the uptrend line from October 2011 is the one from November 2012 - February 2014 (both are near the same 17K level, depending on price scale used). Price oscillated around it (with violent price swings October 1 to October 9) but then let go with a bang on October 9th. It then sliced through price-level support lines and its 200-dma with minor speed bumps along the way. Today it dropped down to the uptrend line from October 2011 when viewed with the arithmetic scale, near 15993. It was broken intraday but the recovery back above it leaves a possible bullish reversal in progress.

Dow Industrials, INDU, Daily chart

Key Levels for DOW:
- bullish above 16,330
- bearish below 16,000

The little squiggles in the leg down from October 8th makes it a little difficult to figure out whether it's more likely we'll see lower prices immediately or after a slightly larger bounce/consolidation. It's possible we'll see price consolidate around its uptrend line from October 2011 before dropping lower. It's also possible this afternoon's bounce will be followed by more selling as it stair-steps lower toward the February low at 15340, another 800 points below today's close. This afternoon's rally got the DOW back above a trend line along the lows since September 24th so that's potentially bullish for the short term. If today's low was an important one we might see the start of another rally leg. But if the selling continues tomorrow I see the potential for the DOW to keep working its way lower into the end of the month.

Dow Industrials, INDU, 60-min chart

The daily chart for SPX shows the sharp reversal off today's low, which has left a bullish hammer near price-level support at 1813. But it broke below its uptrend line from March 2009 - October 2011, which clearly defines the bull market we've been in since the 2009 low. A break of that uptrend line is a break of the bull market. Currently near 1880, SPX tried to hold the line on Monday and Tuesday but snapped today. Unless the bulls can get SPX back above 1880 the uptrend line is now resistance. Watch for a back-test and kiss goodbye for a short play for another leg down. The short term pattern suggests a few days of consolidation before heading lower so be careful you don't get caught in the chop.

S&P 500, SPX, Daily chart

Key Levels for SPX:
- bullish above 1906
- bearish below 1813

A slight modification of the wave count is shown with the 60-min chart below, which calls today's low the completion of the 3rd wave down in the decline from September 19th. It could be the completion of an a-b-c pullback as well, which would be a more bullish setup that calls for the resumption of the longer-term rally. While I have trouble believing in that bullish scenario, I also had the same belief at the February low. Fair warning. But if we've got a 1-2-3 down then we're due a 4th wave correction the rest of this week before finishing a 5-wave move down next week, depicted in red, and completing near 1785. Once a 5-wave move down completes, assuming it will, we'll be due a large 2nd wave correction and it could be a high bounce in November, one which would convince the majority that new highs are coming. We'll worry about how that might play out once we know a tradeable bottom is in place.

S&P 500, SPX, 60-min chart

Today NDX dropped below its 200-dma, near 3765, and its uptrend line from November 2012 - June 2013, near 3726, but recovered back above both this afternoon. As with the others, we potentially have the completion of a 3-wave pullback that sets it up for the start of a new rally or we'll get a bounce correction followed by a new low next week to complete a 5-wave move down before starting a larger bounce into November (not to a new high in this case).

Nasdaq-100, NDX, Daily chart

Key Levels for NDX:
- bullish above 3935
- bearish below 3725

Netflix (NFLX) got body slammed after the close today after announcing its earnings, which were good but they added fewer subscribers than had been expected and lowered forward guidance. Growth? Oops. SELL MORTIMER, SELL! The stock is down about $170 (-38%) from today's high near 451. Wow. Not sure what that will do to NDX tomorrow but it's certainly not going to help. NQ dropped about 20 points after the close but is holding about the 50% retracement of this afternoon's rally so it's not too bad.

The semiconductor index, SOX, got crushed last week after Microchip (MCHP) announced they see an industry correction ahead. They were referring to the semiconductor market but as I've mentioned many times before that means the economy as well. Semiconductors are ubiquitous in manufactured products today and a slowdown in this industry means a slowdown in the economy. Before last week the SOX was hanging onto its uptrend line from November 2012 but when it let go of that it let go with a bang. This morning's low at 547.59 is now only 6 points away from a 38% retracement of the rally from November 2012 and at the moment it's looking like that could set up at least a bounce correction.

Semiconductor index, SOX, Weekly chart

Intel reported earnings after the bell yesterday and it didn't support the more cautious warning from MCHP. It got a positive response with a pop up in after-hours but it didn't help its stock today -- it spiked down with the rest of the market and by the end of the day it was down another -2.7%. At the end of August I was looking at its monthly chart, which I've updated below, to show traders why I thought INTC was a short back then. The monthly candle for September was a star doji at resistance and the big red candle, so far, for October confirms a reversal signal. The September 8th high was a slight poke above the trend line along the highs from April 2010 - May 2012 and at the top of a shallow down-channel off its 2002 low. The consolidation since 2002 looks to have completed at the September high and now another leg down to finish a large A-B-C pullback from 2000 should have started, one that should drop INTC below 10 by the time the bear is dead.

Intel Corp, INTC, Monthly chart

The RUT was again relatively strong today, continuing its relative strength that we've seen for the past few days. It did make a minor new low today as it dropped down to its uptrend line from October 2011 - November 2012, near 1040. It also tagged the bottom of its down-channel for its September-October decline and closed its October 9 2013 gap. It was a good setup for a bounce and it was the only index to close in the green today, by a wide margin, finishing up +1%. It would be more bearish below 1038 but for the moment I'm looking for a larger bounce to get started, especially if it can back above the bottom of its down-channel from July, which is where it closed today.

Russell-2000, RUT, Daily chart

Key Levels for RUT:
- bullish above 1080
- bearish below 1038

The weekly chart of the banking index, BKX, shows today's low was a test of price-level support, near 66, and its uptrend line from March 2009 - October 2011. This is a very important trend line since it defines the cyclical bull market it's been in since the 2009 low. It would be surprising to see this line break on the first test on a weekly basis so we'll see what kind of bounce the bulls can put together here. The double top (March and September) with bearish divergence at the price projection at 73.64 (for two equal legs up from 2009) is a very good indication the rally is over. A break of the uptrend line from 2009 is needed to confirm it.

KBW Bank index, BKX, Weekly chart

Last week the TRAN broke down through two uptrend lines, one from June 2013 and the other from March 2009 - October 2011, and following a completed wave count at its 8591 price projection it's looking like confirmation of THE high. As can be seen on its weekly chart below, it has dropped down to its 50-week MA, near 7779, with a short-term double-bottom test so far on Monday and again today near 7700. If the TRAN bounces back up to its broken uptrend line from 2009, near 8200, it would be an opportunity to see if we get a back-test and bearish kiss goodbye.

Transportation Index, TRAN, Weekly chart

I've been hearing more market pundits lately recommending diversifying your investment portfolio by investing in foreign countries. The emerging market is considered a better value by some and one of the recommendations that I've been hearing is to invest in the Emerging Market ETF, EEM. Probably not surprisingly, I have a different opinion about doing that. The weekly chart of EEM is shown below and back at the end of August I was suggesting it was a good setup for a short play as it rallied up to its downtrend line from 2007-2011 and completing a corrective wave count calling for another leg down. It seems to be on its way and should drop well below its October 2011 low at 33.42.

iShares Emerging Markets ETF, EEM, Weekly chart

In a bear market there are very few places to hide. Cash is the best place and then use some of your capital to play the short side when appropriate. There will of course be bounce opportunities to play the long side but we're very likely entering the next phase of the secular bear that requires trading, not buy and hold.

I thought I'd show a monthly view of the U.S. dollar and the euro to show what the big picture looks like for these currencies. So far the U.S. dollar ran into resistance at its downtrend line from March 2009, which from a bearish perspective is the top of a sideways triangle playing out since the April 2008 low. Without a bias about the dollar I could easily argue the dollar is heading for a breakdown. But I think the dollar is going to break out of this triangle pattern but not before pulling back a little. Dollar bulls need to see the dollar above 87 to confirm the more bullish pattern that calls for a rally up to at least 110, if not 120, which is where I think it's heading. In between these two diametrically opposed possibilities is for the sideways triangle to continue for another few years before it breaks down (light red dashed line).

U.S. Dollar contract, DX, Monthly chart

When the Euro topped out in March and May with a double top at its downtrend line from April 2008 it looked like a good setup for a reversal. The rising wedge pattern for the bounce off the July 2012 low broke in July and price has been "pouring" out of the rising wedge since then. The pattern suggests a return trip to the bottom of a down-channel that it's been in since 2008, which will be near 1.07 by the end of the year. This chart suggests the U.S. dollar is going to break out the top of the sideways triangle on its chart, perhaps after a multi-week pullback.

Euro Currency contract, EC, Monthly chart

For the past several weeks I've been showing the weekly chart of gold to keep the moves in perspective. My interpretation of its pattern is that the sideways consolidation since the June 2013 low is a bearish continuation pattern. But the sideways triangle needs one more pop up to the top of it to complete the wave count (a-b-c-d-e) and the bounce off the October 6th low looks like a good start to the expected leg up to the top of the triangle, which is the downtrend line from April 2013 - March 2014 and is currently near 1350. On the daily chart below I'm showing a projection for a 3-wave move up to the top of the triangle by December and assuming we'll get that rally it will then be a very good setup for a short position in gold, which should then drop below 1000 in early 2015.

Gold continuous contract, GC, Daily chart

Oil has now broken its uptrend line from October 2011 and looks to be in the 3rd wave of the decline from August 2013. This calls for a choppy bounce/consolidation for a few months before heading lower early next year. But if the decline from August 2013 is an a-b-c pullback inside a larger sideways consolidation since 2011 then we could see it head back up. A rally back above the broken uptrend line, near 85.25, would be a bullish heads up and then above 95 would point to a move back up to the 110 area. If the selling continues a little longer we could see oil drop to 74.60 where the 3rd wave down would be 162% of the 1st wave down.

Oil continuous contract, CL, Weekly chart

Thursday morning will be busy with economic reports but no big swings are expected that could move the market one way or the other. The Philly Fed report at 10:00 AM is expected to show a slowing economy in the region but that's been evident in other reports.

Economic reports and Summary

The selling has been more intense than we've seen since mid-2011 when the market dropped sharply in July-August. It took a QE announcement to rescue the market but this time around the Fed doesn't really have the ability to do that again. Even they must recognize that their programs haven't worked and the only thing they've accomplished is to acquire a huge balance sheet of debt. If they try another QE announcement the market would likely react positively at first (the Fed has our backs!) but then the realization of how bad things must be would likely cause more problems than it solves.

Recognizing that the Fed is powerless and in fact that they have only created more problems than they've solved is the recognition point I believe will cause the worst of the bear market. Loss of faith in government, in the Fed and finally financial institutions is going to take the props out from under the market. It's a necessary cleansing step so that we can get to the point where we'll have a generational buying opportunity, created from real growth opportunities, not Fed-sponsored credit expansion.

It will be painful to get through it for most people but for us traders there will be plenty of opportunities to make some lemonade out of the lemons thrown at us. But that will only be true if you have cash to use for trading. Don't stay locked up in buy-and-hold and ride the next wave down. It will be years (decades) before you'll see these prices again. All asset classes will suffer as we get into the heart of a deflationary cycle, one which the Fed is powerless to stop, and cash is the only asset to do well in times of deflation. Don't worry about earning so little in cash -- we're entering another period where preservation of capital will be so much more important than return on capital.

NFLX is still down in after-hours but futures have held after dropping right after the close. ES is down about 10 points from where the cash market closed but is holding near the 38% retracement of this afternoon's rally. It's a volatile time so 10-point moves look like peanuts but it just means we need to be careful about the volatility right now, which gets exacerbated during opex. Trade safe.

Good luck and I'll be back with you next Wednesday.

Keene H. Little, CMT

In the end everything works out and if it doesn't work out, it is not the end. Old Indian Saying


New Option Plays

Preparing For Christmas

by James Brown

Click here to email James Brown


NEW DIRECTIONAL CALL PLAYS

FedEx Corp. - FDX - close: 153.82 change: +0.10

Stop Loss: 148.75
Target(s): To Be Determined
Current Option Gain/Loss: Unopened
Average Daily Volume = 1.5 million
Entry on October -- at $---.--
Listed on October 15, 2014
Time Frame: 8 to 12 weeks
New Positions: Yes, see below

Company Description

Why We Like It:
Last year a last minute surge of online shoppers overwhelmed the system and thousands of Christmas presents were delivered late. Part of the problem was terrible weather. The other challenge was the growth in online shopping. Amazon.com (AMZN) blamed UPS for the mass of delayed deliveries last year. You can bet that UPS' rival FDX has taken notice and plans to be ready this year.

Market research firm EMarketer is estimating that retail online shopping will surge +17% in 2014 to $72.4 billion. That might be under estimating the growth, especially this year as many consumers might opt to shop online instead of face the crowds and risk being a target for terrorism or catching Ebola. Granted neither a terrorist event inside the U.S. and a widespread outbreak of Ebola in the states has happened yet but people are already afraid with the daily headlines about the virus.

UPS and FDX hope to be ready. UPS is hiring up to 95,000 seasonal workers and FDX is hiring 50,000 holiday workers this year. That's 10K more than last year for FDX.

In addition to the surge in online shopping FDX should also benefit from the multi-year lows in oil prices. Low oil prices means lower fuel costs, one of FDX's biggest expenses.

It would appear that FDX has fine tuned its earnings machine as well. Their latest earnings report was September 17th. Wall Street was expecting a profit of $1.95 a share on revenues of $11.46 billion. FDX delivered a profit of $2.10 a share with revenues up to $11.7 billion. That's a +24% increase in earnings from a year ago and the second quarter in a row that FDX beat EPS estimates.

FDX chairman, president, and CEO Frederick Smith said, "FedEx Corp. is off to an outstanding start in fiscal 2015, thanks to very strong performance at FedEx Ground, solid volume and revenue increases at FedEx Freight and healthy growth in U.S. domestic volume at FedEx Express." Business has been strong enough that a few weeks ago FDX started raising prices on some services.

Since that September earnings report Wall Street analysts have been raising price targets. Some of the new price targets for FDX stock are $175, $180 and $183 a share.

The recent sell-off in the market and FDX could be an opportunity. FDX has already seen a -10% correction from its intraday high near $165 to today's low near $149. Right now FDX sits just below resistance near $155.

We're suggesting a trigger to buy calls at $155.50.

Trigger @ $155.50

- Suggested Positions -

Buy the 2015 Jan $160 call (FDX150117c160) current ask $5.40

Option Format: symbol-year-month-day-call-strike

Daily Chart:

Weekly Chart:



In Play Updates and Reviews

Volatility Spikes Higher

by James Brown

Click here to email James Brown

Editor's Note:

The volatility in U.S. stocks soared to three-year highs with big intraday swings in the major indices. A big chunk of the market managed to pare their losses.

The afternoon bounce was strong enough that LII and OII hit our stop losses.


Current Portfolio:


CALL Play Updates

Ambarella, Inc. - AMBA - close: 38.60 change: +2.94

Stop Loss: $34.25
Target(s): To Be Determined
Current Option Gain/Loss: +38.8%
Average Daily Volume = 2.4 million
Entry on October 13 at $35.25
Listed on October 08, 2014
Time Frame: 8 to 12 weeks
New Positions: see below

Comments:
10/15/14: AMBA produced a big bounce today. The stock did not share the market's early morning weakness. Instead AMBA soared to a +8.2% gain. The stock is nearing what might be short-term, round-number resistance at the $40.00 mark. We are moving our stop loss up to $34.25.

Earlier Comments: October 8, 2014:
AMBA is in the technology sector. They're considered part of the semiconductor and semiconductor equipment makers. The company was founded in 2004 and went public in October 2012 at $6.00 a share. That price was significantly below where AMBA was expected to price in the $9-11 range.

The company has grown from making broadcast-class encoders to making consumer and sports cameras, security cameras, and now automotive cameras. Their high-definition chips are being integrated into security IP cameras and wearable cameras. AMBA is also capturing part of a new market - cameras on consumer-level remote control drones.

The last two plus years have seen a strong performance in AMBA with the stock up +633% from its IPO price. AMBA has GoPro, Inc. (GPRO) to thank for part of that rally. GPRO came to market in June this year and the stock has been in rally mode since mid August with a rally in GPRO from less than $40 to $90 a share. AMBA happens to make the HD camera sensors in many of GPRO's products. As GPRO rallies it could be giving AMBA a boost and GPRO expects record sales this holiday season.

It's also worth noting that AMBA's rally has been helped by consistent earnings growth. The company has beat Wall Street's estimates on both the top and bottom line for the last four quarters in a row. Their most recent earnings report in September saw AMBA's management raise their revenue guidance.

Shorts are getting killed. As the rally continues AMBA could see more short covering. The most recent data listed short interest at 21.7% of the small 28.0 million share float.

We think the bullish momentum continues. Tonight we're suggesting a trigger to buy calls at $44.65.

- Suggested Positions -

Long NOV $40 call (AMBA141122C40) entry $1.80*

10/15/14 new stop @ 34.25
10/13/14 triggered at $35.25
*option entry price is an estimate since the option did not trade at the time our play was opened.
10/11/14 new entry strategy: move the entry trigger from $44.65 to $35.25 and move the stop loss from $40.45 to $31.90.
We will adjust the option strike from the NOV $46 call to the NOV $40 call
Option Format: symbol-year-month-day-call-strike


The Hain Celestial Group, Inc. - HAIN - close: 98.40 change: +0.21

Stop Loss: 96.75
Target(s): To Be Determined
Current Option Gain/Loss: Unopened
Average Daily Volume = 632 thousand
Entry on October -- at $---.--
Listed on October 14, 2014
Time Frame: 8 to 12 weeks
New Positions: Yes, see below

Comments:
10/15/14: HAIN spent Wednesday's session churning sideways without any big moves either direction. I don't see any changes from last night's new play description:

Earlier Comments: October 14, 2014:
Looking at the world economies the U.S. is the cleanest shirt in the dirty clothes hamper. Every economy needs to see improvement but the U.S. is looking the healthiest. If U.S. growth continues to improve it should bode well for consumer spending. That should lead to strength in organic food sales.

There has been a strong trend of consumers moving more and more toward natural and organic foods. That's where HAIN is a major player. The company website describes HAIN as, "The Hain Celestial Group, headquartered in Lake Success, NY, is a leading natural and organic food and personal care products company in North America and Europe. Hain Celestial participates in almost all natural food categories with well-known brands that include Celestial Seasonings, Terra, Garden of Eatin', Health Valley, WestSoy, Earth's Best, Arrowhead Mills, DeBoles, Hain Pure Foods, FreeBird, Hollywood, Spectrum Naturals, Spectrum Essentials, Walnut Acres Organic, Imagine Foods, Rice Dream, Soy Dream, Rosetto, Ethnic Gourmet, Yves Veggie Cuisine, Linda McCartney, Realeat, Lima, Grains Noirs, Natumi, JASON, Zia Natural Skincare, Avalon Organics, Alba Botanica and Queen Helene."

HAIN's results have definitely confirmed the trend in consumer spending. They have beaten Wall Street's estimates and guided higher in three out of the last four earnings reports. Their most recent report was August 20th. You can see the big move in the stock after HAIN reported a profit of 90 cents a share on revenues that rose +26% to $583.8 million. Analysts were only expecting $0.89 cents a share on revenues of $577 million.

HAIN's management then raised their guidance again. They expect 2015 earnings to be in the $3.72-3.90 range compared to analysts' estimates around $3.73. HAIN is anticipating sales growth of +27% to +30% in 2015.

The bullish outlook for 2015 did not completely HAIN from the market's recent sell-off. Shares broke support near $100 and dipped to their 50-dma before bouncing. Altogether the stock has weathered the market's correction pretty well. The point & figure chart is still bullish and forecasting a long-term target at $131.00.

We want to be ready to buy calls if HAIN can rally back above the $100 level. Tonight we're suggesting a trigger to buy calls at $100.25. Earnings are expected in November so this might only be a 2-to-4 week trade.

Trigger @ $100.25

- Suggested Positions -

Buy the NOV $105 call (HAIN141122c105) current ask $1.75

Option Format: symbol-year-month-day-call-strike


iShares Transportation ETF - IYT - close: 142.24 change: +0.37

Stop Loss: 134.45
Target(s): To Be Determined
Current Option Gain/Loss: -32.3%
Average Daily Volume = 320 thousand
Entry on October 13 at $138.75
Listed on October 11, 2014
Time Frame: 3 to 6 weeks
New Positions: see below

Comments:
10/15/14: The big intraday swings in the market today have pushed the option spreads wider. The IYT closed up on the session but the bid/ask spread on our calls has surged.

Earlier Comments: October 11, 2014:
The IYT is an exchange traded fund (ETF) that tries to mimic the performance of the Dow Jones Transportation Average index.

Stocks have been sinking as investors worry about a global slowdown, especially in Europe. Yet the U.S. economy is still growing. Plunging oil prices should be great news for both business and consumers. Lower fuel costs means more money to spend elsewhere. Lower fuel prices also mean better margins for transportation companies.

The IYT has hit correction territory with a -10% pullback from its September highs about four weeks ago. When the market finally bounces the transports should lead the market higher thanks to the U.S. economy and low oil prices.

It looks like IYT's current drop could be near a bottom. Volume was almost three times the norm on Friday and shares settled near technical support at its simple 200-dma. We suspect the market will see another push lower before bouncing. That could see the IYT pierce the $140 level.

Tonight we're suggesting a trigger to buy calls at $138.75 with a stop loss at $134.45. This should be considered a higher-risk, more aggressive trade. You've heard the term "catching a falling knife" and that's what we're trying to do. You may want to wait for the IYT to pierce $140.00 and then buy the rebound back above this level as an alternative strategy.

*Higher-risk, more aggressive trade* - Suggested Positions -

Long NOV $143 call (IYT141122c143) entry $3.40*

10/13/14 triggered @ 138.75
*option entry price is an estimate since the option did not trade at the time our play was opened.
Option Format: symbol-year-month-day-call-strike




PUT Play Updates

Flowserve Corp. - FLS - close: 61.16 change: -1.13

Stop Loss: 62.10
Target(s): To Be Determined
Current Option Gain/Loss: +165.6%
Average Daily Volume = 813 thousand
Entry on October 06 at $68.45
Listed on October 04, 2014
Time Frame: 8 to 12 weeks
New Positions: see below

Comments:
10/15/14: FLS continues to underperform and lost another -1.8% today. Shares managed to pierce round-number support at $60.00 midday. This stock looks poised to bounce. Investors will want to seriously consider an early exit right now. We are moving our stop loss down to $62.10. I am not suggesting new positions at this time.

Earlier Comments: October 4, 2014:
FLS is part of the industrial goods sector. The company is headquartered in Texas and has grown to 16,000 employees in over 50 countries. The company makes pumps, valves, seals, and provides services to the power generation, oil & gas, chemicals, and general industries.

FLS' rally from its 2011 low peaked back in early 2014. A slowdown in the global economy is impacting sales. The last couple of quarters have seen FLS miss revenue estimates and report declining sales. Now after six months of lower highs shares of FLS has broken down from a huge consolidation pattern. Goldman Sachs may have seen this coming when they put a "sell" rating on the stock back in June.

FLS is currently down four weeks in a row and the last few days have seen the stock break down under support near $70.00. More importantly it has broken support at its long-term trend line of support dating back to its 2011 low.

FLS was also showing relative weakness on Friday. Instead of bouncing with the market shares underperformed with a -1.5% decline on almost double its average volume. The point & figure chart has turned bearish and is forecasting at $60 target.

Tonight we are suggesting a trigger to buy puts at $68.45.

- Suggested Positions -

Long NOV $70 PUT (FLS141122P70) entry $3.20

10/15/14 new stop @ 62.10, consider an early exit now!
10/13/14 new stop @ 64.51, consider taking profits near $60.00
10/11/14 new stop @ 66.55, traders may want to take profits early
10/07/14 new stop @ 70.10
10/06/14 triggered @ 68.45
Option Format: symbol-year-month-day-call-strike


Pentair Plc - PNR - close: 60.85 change: -0.96

Stop Loss: 62.10
Target(s): To Be Determined
Current Option Gain/Loss: +150.0%
Average Daily Volume = 2.0 million
Entry on August 26 at $68.90
Listed on August 23, 2014
Time Frame: 8 to 12 weeks
New Positions: see below

Comments:
10/15/14: PNR collapsed to new 2014 lows and traded below $60.00 before paring its losses. Even with the afternoon bounce PNR closed down -1.5%.

Readers may want to take profits now. We are moving our stop loss down to $62.10.

I'm not suggesting new positions at this time. Earnings are coming up on October 21st.

Earlier Comments: August 23, 2014:
Pentair is considered part of the industrial goods sector. They manufacture industrial equipment across the globe. According to the company website, "Pentair is a global water, fluid, thermal management, and equipment protection partner with industry leading products, services, and solutions. Pentair reports the performance of its business within four reporting segments that focus on five primary verticals."

Long-term the stock has had a strong 2012 and 2013 performance. The rally appears to have peaked in 2014 when the market started pulling back in March this year. If you recall many of the momentum names and higher-growth stocks were hammered lower starting in March. PNR doesn't really qualify as a big momentum name or a high-growth name but shares have been unable to recover anyway. Shares have trended lower from the March peak, currently down -16% from its 2014 highs and down -10.6% year to date.

PNR's earnings results have not helped the stock's performance. Back in April they beat estimates but missed the revenue number and then guided lower for the second quarter. Their most recent earnings report was July 31st. Depending whose estimate you use PNR either reported in-line profits or managed to just beat by a penny. Revenues disappointed again. PNR missed the revenue estimate with a -2.7% decline from a year ago to $1.91 billion. Management lowered guidance again but they also announced they were exiting their struggling water transport business.

PNR collapsed on this late July earnings news and lowered guidance with a drop toward $64. Shares have spent three weeks with an oversold bounce that is just now starting to roll over under resistance. PNR appears to have resistance near $70-71 and its 50-dma and 300-dma (see daily chart below). The point & figure chart is bearish and currently forecasting at $61 target.

Tonight we are suggesting a trigger to buy puts at $68.90.

- Suggested Positions -

Long Nov $70 PUT (PNR141122P70) entry $3.60*

10/15/14 new stop @ 62.10, Consider taking profits now!
10/13/14 new stop @ 63.10
10/11/14 new stop @ 64.75, traders may want to take profits now
10/09/14 new stop @ 66.15
10/01/14 new stop @ 67.05
09/06/14 new stop @ 68.65
08/26/14 triggered @ 68.90
Option Format: symbol-year-month-day-call-strike


Starbucks Corp. - SBUX - close: 72.38 change: -0.36

Stop Loss: 73.75
Target(s): To Be Determined
Current Option Gain/Loss: +63.7%
Average Daily Volume = 3.6 million
Entry on September 23 at $74.25
Listed on September 22, 2014
Time Frame: 8 to 12 weeks
New Positions: see below

Comments:
10/15/14: SBUX spent the day percolating between $71 and $73. We're not suggesting new positions at this time. Please note our new stop loss at $73.75.

Earlier Comments: September 22, 2014:
Summer is over and fall is officially here. That has many consumers thinking of hot coffee and seasonal fare like SBUX's pumpkin spice lattes. Unfortunately Wall Street doesn't appear too keen on SBUX, if you're looking at the share price action.

This company is in the services sector. They are a global power house as a specialty retailer of what some might consider overpriced coffee and sugary drinks with too many calories. After 30 years in business they have grown to more than 20,000 stores and over 180,000 full time employees.

The stock peaked in late 2013. It looked like the correction was over back in April this year and SBUX did rally from $68 to $79 by July. Yet the stock has been dead money the last several weeks and now it's starting to underperform the market.

That spike you see on the daily chart was a reaction to its Q2 earnings results. The recent breakdown under $76 is bearish and the oversold bounce just failed near this level. Today's intraday low was $74.33. We're suggesting a trigger to buy puts at $74.25.

- Suggested Positions -

Long NOV $72.50 PUT (SBUX141122P72.5) entry $1.60*

10/15/14 new stop @ 73.75
10/13/14 new stop @ 74.55
09/23/14 triggered @ 74.25
*option entry price is an estimate since the option did not trade at the time our play was opened.
Option Format: symbol-year-month-day-call-strike


Tupperware Brands Corp. - TUP - close: 68.18 change: +0.35

Stop Loss: 69.15
Target(s): To Be Determined
Current Option Gain/Loss: +69.8%
Average Daily Volume = 399 thousand
Entry on September 22 at $71.75
Listed on September 20, 2014
Time Frame: 8 to 12 weeks
New Positions: see below

Comments:
10/15/14: TUP did not see a lot of movement today. Shares did tag a new low before bouncing. I am moving our stop loss down to $69.15.

Earlier Comments: September 20, 2014:
TUP was founded back in 1946 and over the last 60 years the company has grown from their plastic food prep and storage line into multiple brands.

According to the company website, "Tupperware Brands Corporation is the leading global marketer of innovative, premium products across multiple brands utilizing a relationship based selling method through an independent sales force of 2.9 million. Product brands and categories include design-centric preparation, storage and serving solutions for the kitchen and home through the Tupperware brand and beauty and personal care products through the Armand Dupree, Avroy Shlain, BeautiControl, Fuller Cosmetics, NaturCare, Nutrimetics, and Nuvo brands."

Unfortunately this year has not been the best for TUP's stock price. The company missed earnings expectations and lowered guidance back in January. You can see the market's reaction with the big drop in late January on the chart.

It took three months but TUP slowly clawed its way back toward resistance near $85 and its simple 200-dma. That area proved to be a lid on the stock price. Then in July the company disappointed again. It's Q2 earnings report disclosed that profits fell -38% to $47.6 million, down from $76.3 million a year ago. Management then lowered its full year guidance when they reported earnings and shares plunged again.

The weekly chart has produced a bearish head-and-shoulders pattern. The daily chart doesn't look healthy either. The Point & Figure chart is bearish and suggesting at $58.00 price target.

There is short-term support near $72.00. I'm suggesting a trigger to buy puts at $71.75.

- Suggested Positions -

Long 2015 Jan $70 PUT (TUP150117P70) entry $2.59

10/15/14 new stop @ 69.15
10/13/14 new stop @ 70.15
10/11/14 new stop @ 71.05
09/23/14 new stop @ 72.25
09/22/14 new stop @ 72.80
09/22/14 triggered @ 71.75
Option Format: symbol-year-month-day-call-strike


Vulcan Materials Co. - VMC - close: 56.28 change: +0.55

Stop Loss: 57.55
Target(s): To Be Determined
Current Option Gain/Loss: +13.7%
Average Daily Volume = 976 thousand
Entry on October 08 at $56.90
Listed on October 07, 2014
Time Frame: 8 to 12 weeks
New Positions: see below

Comments:
10/15/14: VMC fell to $54.10 at its lows and then rebounded back to close up almost +1%. This move has created a bullish engulfing candlestick reversal pattern on the daily chart. I'm turning more defensive and moving our stop loss to $57.55, about 25 cents above the 10-dma. I am not suggesting new positions at this time.

Earlier Comments: October 7, 2014:
VMC is in the industrial goods sector. The are the largest producer of construction aggregates in the United States. They are also a major producer of aggregate-based construction materials. Put it altogether and VMC produces crushed stone, sand, gravel, asphalt and ready-mix concrete.

The stock has languished for years after peaking near $125 a share back in 2007. It looked like the stock has turned a corner back in 2011 but that rally now appears to be in trouble. More recently VMC peaked under $70 back in March this year. It's been slowly chopping sideways since then in the $60-70 zone. The recent weakness might suggest a trend change for the worse.

The selling pressure has pushed VMC stock under multiple layers of support. It could get a lot worse. The market's recent weakness has been stoked by fears of a global growth slowdown. Bulls could argue that nearly all of VMC's sales are inside the U.S. and the U.S. economy is still growing. That's true. Evidently investors don't care.

Today's display of relative weakness (-2.1%) left shares of VMC testing its long-term trend line of higher lows dating back to 2011. A breakdown here could mean a much longer and larger correction lower. Tonight we're suggesting a trigger to buy puts at $56.90.

- Suggested Positions -

Long NOV $55 PUT (VMC141122P55) entry $1.67*

10/13/14 new stop @ 58.10
10/08/14 triggered @ 56.90
*option entry price is an estimate since the option did not trade at the time our play was opened.
Option Format: symbol-year-month-day-call-strike


WESCO Intl. - WCC - close: 71.18 change: -0.42

Stop Loss: 72.55
Target(s): To Be Determined
Current Option Gain/Loss: +151.2%
Average Daily Volume = 306 thousand
Entry on October 01 at $77.75
Listed on September 30, 2014
Time Frame: 8 to 12 weeks
New Positions: see below

Comments:
10/15/14: WCC punctured round-number support at $70.00 before paring its losses. This is potentially a short-term bottom and investors will want to seriously consider taking profits now.

We will move the stop loss down to $72.55. I'm not suggesting new positions.

Please note that WCC is scheduled to report earnings on October 23rd and we will most likely exit prior to the announcement.

Earlier Comments: September 30, 2014:
WCC is part of the services sector. They distribute industrial equipment. Their website describes WCC as "WESCO Distribution is a leader in industrial supply with an extensive offering of electrical, data communications, general maintenance, repair, and operating (MRO) and electrical OEM products. We are more than just an electrical distributor; we are a company of procurement specialists, helping customers lower supply chain costs, increase efficiency through WESCO Value Creation and save energy with green and sustainability initiatives. Our network of branches delivers industrial supply products fast, and our vast catalog of supplier partners enables WESCO to be your one-stop shop for electrical and MRO products."

Unfortunately for shareholders the stock peaked back in January this year. WCC produced a lower high in June. After a two-month drop WCC bounced but the bounce failed early September under resistance near $86.00, resistance at its simple 200-dma and resistance at the 50% retracement of the decline.

This trade isn't just about the technical picture. WCC has missed Wall Street's earnings estimates every quarter this year starting with its quarterly report announced in January, then April, and most recently in July. When WCC reported its July results management also lowered their 2014 guidance.

We are not the only ones who think WCC is bearish. The most recent data listed short interest at 13% of the 44.1 million share float. The point & figure chart is bearish too and forecasting at $64.00 target.

Today's drop was fueled by strong volume and shares are poised to break down under its late July low. Tonight we are suggesting a trigger to buy puts at $77.75.

- Suggested Positions -

Long NOV $75 PUT (WCC141122P75) entry $1.95*

10/15/14 new stop @ 72.55
10/13/14 new stop @ 73.75
10/11/14 new stop @ 76.25, traders may want to take some money off the table here.
10/01/14 triggered @ 77.75
*option entry price is an estimate since the option did not trade at the time our play was opened.
Option Format: symbol-year-month-day-call-strike


CLOSED BEARISH PLAYS

Lennox Intl. - LII - close: 74.99 change: +0.41

Stop Loss: 75.55
Target(s): To Be Determined
Current Option Gain/Loss: +46.1%
Average Daily Volume = 391 thousand
Entry on September 22 at $79.25
Listed on September 20, 2014
Time Frame: 8 to 12 weeks
New Positions: see below

Comments:
10/15/14: The afternoon rebound in LII picked up speed and shares managed to tag our new stop loss at $75.55 before the closing bell.

The overall trend is still down but today's move did create a bullish engulfing candlestick reversal pattern.

- Suggested Positions -

DEC $80 PUT (LII141220P80) entry $3.90 exit $5.70** (+46.1%)

10/15/14 stopped out
**option exit price is an estimate since the option did not trade at the time our play was closed.
10/13/14 new stop @ 75.55
10/11/14 new stop @ 77.15
10/01/14 new stop @ 78.25
09/30/14 new stop @ 79.55
09/23/14 new stop @ 80.25
09/22/14 triggered @ 79.25
Option Format: symbol-year-month-day-call-strike

chart:


Oceaneering Intl. Inc. - OII - close: 62.28 change: +2.57

Stop Loss: 62.10
Target(s): To Be Determined
Current Option Gain/Loss: +28.3%
Average Daily Volume = 1.6 million
Entry on October 06 at $62.35
Listed on October 04, 2014
Time Frame: We will likely exit prior to earnings on Oct. 29th
New Positions: see below

Comments:
10/15/14: Energy stocks were some of the market's best performers today. After plunging for weeks the energy stocks finally bounced and the bounce was pretty big. OII surged +4.3% and hit our stop at $62.10 this afternoon. Shares managed to erase about four days worth of losses in one bounce.

- Suggested Positions -

NOV $60 PUT (OII141122P60) entry $1.48 exit $1.90 (+28.3%)

10/15/14 stopped out
10/13/14 new stop @ 62.10
10/11/14 new stop @ 62.75
10/06/14 triggered @ 62.35
Option Format: symbol-year-month-day-call-strike

chart: