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  Alan   10/20/02,  10:01:56 PM
Index Futures
10AM ES 879s, YM 8265, NQ 957
Futures have leaked lower, ES currently -4 from Fri's close/Sunday's open, Dow - 40s, NQ -4

  Alan   10/20/02,  7:16:18 PM
Index Futures
ES 882-883, NQ 960
Good evening. Sunday night futures opened sideways from Fridays's close

  Jim Brown   10/18/02,  8:28:33 PM
Rumor There was a rumor Friday night that Bank One (ONE) was going to buy JPM. This may only be a rumor OR there is a deal to take JPM out because of an impending failure. There is a huge rumor that JPM has a massive derivative problem that could be taking them under. Having a white knight with cash show up could help solve some of those problems while giving the knight a sweet deal in the process.

  Jim Brown   10/18/02,  5:46:15 PM
The Swing Trade Game Plan has been posted: Link

  Steven Price   10/18/02,  4:28:14 PM
Reader Question: Trapped in IBM Nov 65 puts. HUGE position. Any thoughts on a possible exit strategy? Thanks for the input. Greatly appreciated. Tom

Response: IBM $74.25 (+2.05) IBM is right up into resistance now and could certainly roll over. We have discussed shorting it from this level, but will look for a breakdown from resistance. The Nov 65 puts are bid at $1.00, and the Nov 60 puts are bid at $0.50. If I was holding the position I would probably sell the Nov 60 puts for 0.50 and stay long the spread at 0.50. However, if the position is "huge," a trader needs to decide how much they are willing to lose. Keeping enough capital to come back and play the next day is the number one rule.

  Alan   10/18/02,  4:17:07 PM
4:15 PM Futures Close: ES 883.25 (Emini SP500 Futures) , YM (Dow 5 futures) 8296, NQ 961.5 (NDX futures) .
NQ, closing at day highs, filled it's gap at 960 where it was at the 3 AM "top" in the overnight markets. ES and YM closed today about 5 ES points and 40 YM points under their matching 3 AM 'top' levels.
From the 3 PM bond close, the futures "leaked higher" to form respectable closing values on very low afternoon volume on Option Friday.

  Alan   10/18/02,  4:02:41 PM
MSFT close today at $53.14 filled the upside gap to where it closed at last night at 7 PM, off Fri lows of 51.25

  Alan   10/18/02,  3:59:27 PM
4:00 PM Cash Close has futures at: ES 883s, YM 8290x8294, NQ 959

  Alan   10/18/02,  3:49:55 PM
3:50 PM ES 882s, YM 8275 x 8278, NQ 955
Unless something truly amazing and un-expected happens once the Cash market closes at 4 PM, and before Futures close at 4:15 PM, there shall be no additional Futures Trade Signals for today as we go into the weekend FLAT.

  Alan   10/18/02,  3:43:28 PM
On absolutely no real volume, it appears we shall be getting a 'boring' non-tradeable Futures close as ES goes sideways at 879-883 area, Dow cash between 8270 and 8300, and NQ 950-955 area.
There have been some option Friday's where Futures 'action' occured after the market's 4 PM cash close; all we can do is wait and watch.
Do Longs take profit going into the close? Do shorts that are currently 'wrong' decide to just 'cover em' and go home flat?
Technically, Dow Cash closing near 8300 (+150 pts off it's 10 AM 8150 lows) might be a logical place 'they' close the Dow.

  Jim Brown   10/18/02,  3:40:47 PM
Swing Trade Exit Point Alert - OEX/SPX/DJX/DIA/SPY
We are into the less than 20 min window and this is when the short covering will occur. Close the current SHORT position now at 447.

Swing Trade Exit Point Alert - QQQ
The QQQ is showing no signs of weakness going into the weekend. Close the QQQ SHORT now at 23.60.

  Jim Brown   10/18/02,  3:22:12 PM
Swing Trade Entry Point Alert - OEX/SPX/DJX/DIA/SPY
We did not get the short covering follow through in the early afternoon so let's cancel the LONG signal. Too late in the day to enter new positions even if we did get a rally.

  Jim Brown   10/18/02,  3:20:50 PM
Swing Trade Exit Point Alert - OEX/SPX/DJX/DIA/SPY
Lower the stop loss on the current SHORT signal to OEX 448.50. We will exit just above the last bounce if the market turns back up. If you do not want to risk those last couple points then exit now at 446.50. I keep thinking MMM will dive at the close and give us another couple point OEX drop but buyers are nibbling on the last dip.

  John Seckinger   10/18/02,  3:15:23 PM
The "hammer" formation in the 30-year in intact, but I was hoping for a better move out of the yield curve. The 5/10 spread only moved about one tick; nothing to write home about. I imagine institutions are looking at the close of equities for direction. Looking elsewhere, the dollar remains bullish, while Gold is near a bullish trend line and "neutral" going into next week.

  Jim Brown   10/18/02,  3:14:48 PM
Swing Trade Signals
MMM, C, GM, JNJ are leading the Dow down as we move into the last hour. The A/D line is crashing after struggling around the flat line all afternoon. The declining volume is spiking. We need to break OEX 445 to see a serious drop into the close. This is back to the same 8250 level on the Dow that held on Thursday. We are 45 min from the close and we need to hold our cards until a winner appears.

  Jonathan Levinson   10/18/02,  3:07:40 PM
Citicorpse (C) is approaching its lows of the day, currently 34.80.

The latest p/c ratio reading just came in at .74, another low of the day, which tells me that speculation in puts peaked at the open and speculation in calls has been increasing all day, which, as a contrarian indicator, is encouraging for bears. The TICK.NQ is flat to negative, while QQV is lower at 46.34, down 1.72. These indicators look too bullish to me, given price action today and the heavy resistance looming just overhead.

  Jim Brown   10/18/02,  2:58:26 PM
MMM One way to play MMM today would be to sell naked the NOV 125 Call and PUT, current premiums slightly over $5 each. You receive over $10 in premium and MMM is stuck dead on $125. On Monday morning you either short or go long MMM depending on which direction the stock moves. You either get called away if it goes up and the put expires or gets closed. Or, you get put the stock if it goes down but that covers your short. Either way you get $10+ in premium and you should be able to cover the stock within $2 of $125. That gives you an $8 win. Just an opinion. You should not lose any money unless MMM gaps up or down over $10 at the open. Very unlikely but possible. Your hedge is the $10+ in premium received.

  Alan   10/18/02,  2:55:10 PM
Index Futures
Both the Brokers and Semi-Conductor sector had "bad news" in the last 12 hours, interesting that GS $70.67 is at Day Lows, while the Semi $SOX index 267 is at Day Highs. (and this is a measure of current market boredom that one even notices something like that [grins]

  Alan   10/18/02,  2:51:53 PM
Index Futures
It is frustrating for those sitting here all afternoon, but there simply is no current Futures Trade offering attractive risk/reward. Perhaps after the 3 PM bond close will provide something, then again, ES might remain in this not-tradeable range of 880-885 that it's been in 1/2 of the day.

  Jonathan Levinson   10/18/02,  2:48:35 PM
Correction- that last put to call ratio reading was .77, still the low of the day, but not .73 as I mistakenly typed.

  Jeff Bailey   10/18/02,  2:47:14 PM
Still got some steam? Jeff: I did note from your comments on the MM (12:36pm post) and in the OIN nightly letter that we may witness an increase in the bullish percentages in the indeces in the coming days. Am I right in assuming that there's a good possibility that this rally will have further to go before running out of steam? Please comment. Thank you.

Yes! In last night's Index Wrap, I make prediction for Dow 8,700, but if it gets there, then might have to pull a Goldman Sachs and raise to 9,000. Of course, I'd want to take some gains off the table near 8,700 if target were achieved. I also think it isn't out of the question, to see Dow test 8,000 prior to 8,700, so stay disciplined with your trades. JNJ Link is my "key leadership" stock to monitor, and one I look for leadership from.

  Jim Brown   10/18/02,  2:41:33 PM
MMM - Last post

It appears the consensus of reader opinions is that MMM will hit their numbers on cost cutting and not on any business improvement. They will claim no visibility going forward and try to spin further cost cutting efforts. The fear among traders is that it will play out like IBM. No "bad" news is good news. But the consensus is to remain flat instead of trying to speculate either way.

  Jonathan Levinson   10/18/02,  2:41:06 PM
Good news for bears is the CBOE put to call ratio, which has come way down from its opening high of 1.40 to its last reading, a low for the day, at .73. The TRINQ is at .75, back into neutral bull territory, while bond yields are flat.

  Jonathan Levinson   10/18/02,  2:39:10 PM
Stop everything!

Jim Cramer is proclaiming on Bloomberg radio that this is a "stock picker's market", and that the beginning of a new bull market is being seen for stocks like MSFT, IBM, YHOO and a few others, but I didn't catch them because his incessant shrieking caused me to grind my teeth. His point, if there is one, seems to be that a small number of leaders will emerge from battered sectors.

  Alan   10/18/02,  2:36:32 PM
Index Futures
At 2:15 PM ES stalled at 885, and did not break out above that level to re-challange the quad-top at 887-88, it has leaked lower to kiss the 879.50 50% retracement mentioned today, and has bounced to current ES 882, YM 8281, NQ 953.

  John Seckinger   10/18/02,  2:36:13 PM
With only 30-minutes left until the bond market closes, a daily chart is projecting the possibility of a "hammer" formation (candlestick pattern). Currently at 108'20 and down '05 ticks, the Dec 30-year would have to close roughly '16 ticks lower near 108 in order to ruin this possible reversal formation. Remember, there is still not solid correlation between equities and the bond market. But that should change next week.

  Jim Brown   10/18/02,  2:31:47 PM
MMM Here is a link on their earnings expectations. Link These writers feel that MMM will meet estimates due to cost cutting and then caution based on the tough economic conditions.

  Jim Brown   10/18/02,  2:29:09 PM
MMM The big question with MMM is the spin. I believe they will meet or exceed estimates based on cost cutting. If I remember correctly that is what happened last quarter with a pep speech by the ceo on all the changes and the analysts bought it.

I am getting some interesting emails on MMM. I may have to reconsider the exit before the close on the SHORT signal.

  Alan   10/18/02,  2:26:05 PM
Index Futures
Sox at day highs after the terrible book to bill numbers is interesting.

  Jim Brown   10/18/02,  2:23:40 PM
Citigroup Moody's just lowered ratings on 18 brazilian banks.C-ya - David

Looks like the air may come out of the Citigroup short after all!!

  Jim Brown   10/18/02,  2:21:52 PM
Swing Trade Signals
Surprise, surprise! That 449 top triggered a real dumper of a sell program.

In case I did not make myself clear earlier we want to cancel the last 1/4 position SHORT entry at 444. It is too late in the day to be adding to a short. If we get a significant drop this afternoon I am still going to exit before the close.

  Jim Brown   10/18/02,  2:13:41 PM
MMMThe R&D cutback is a disaster. Shows how bad business is. MMM has always had an enormous amount of research going on, which is how they've come up with unique categories like post-it notes. Laying those people off shows that the wheels are coming off the wagon.

Cheaper manufacturing in China, yes, but they also are constantly tooting their horn about what good corporate citizens they are. This appears to be a desperation move. Witheld

So does this mean their earnings will be a negative surprise?

  Jim Brown   10/18/02,  2:11:16 PM
Where's the fuse ?? I think the bear with the match s in his bedroom, smoking a cigarette ad trying to decide if it's about time to hibernate. Only one sniper attack this week, I think I might finally go fill my car up. -Ross

  Jim Brown   10/18/02,  2:08:44 PM
MMM I don't know how widely this is already known, but a friend who works at MMM reports that they have cut all R&D and are moving all their manufacturing to China. Business is not good. name deleted

My initial thought is that those products will be made cheaper in China and more profitably. Anybody else have any thoughts/news on MMM?

  Jim Brown   10/18/02,  2:04:59 PM

EBAY has failed at $60 constantly and if you take a down trend line from the last Dec high through the Aug high you get exactly $60 again. This is the perfect entry point on EBAY in my opinion.

  Alan   10/18/02,  2:04:27 PM
Index Futures
ES chops sideways at 882 the last hour: 882 is 5 pts above the 877 level, and 10 points above the 872 support, and 5 pts under the 887-888 resistance. In other words, that's 'why' we are here, but no indication for where we go the last 2 hours. Volume extremely low in futures. Model remains FLAT.

  John Seckinger   10/18/02,  2:01:44 PM
The high during the week of August 3rd, 1997 was 8298. This became a good relative high until February 1998 when prices went higher and didn't look back for months. I mention this level because a close above 8298 this week could get the attention of long-term technical followers.

  Jeff Bailey   10/18/02,  1:58:23 PM
Amazon.com (AMZN) $19.18 +2.4% ... been watching this stock on Level II... lots of crossing going on and may be option expiration related. Day traders can take long and look for some volatility toward $20.00, stop $19.10.

  Jim Brown   10/18/02,  1:55:46 PM
Swing Trade Entry Point Alert - OEX/SPX/DJX/DIA/SPY
Go LONG 1/2 position with an OEX trade at 451. This is over the high of the day and it could trigger serious short covering by those who have been holding off from capitulating all week. The initial stop loss will be close at OEX 447.

Overhead resistance is at 453.44, 458.35, 460 with very strong resistance at 466.

We will add another 1/4 position at 454 or another 1/4 on any dip back to 448.

  Jim Brown   10/18/02,  1:55:00 PM
Swing Trade Signals
OEX 448.57 ! Those sellers at 450 did lower their prices! There is a real battle going on here. The A/D line has come back to dead even and we are trading at a draw. Let's see, dull market on options expiration IN OCTOBER with a huge list of earnings on Monday morning lead by the biggest Dow stock. Where is that fuse. I can hear it and smell it but I can't see it.

  Alan   10/18/02,  1:46:19 PM
Index Futures
The bullish tone of the last week remains, as ES bounces from the 877 50% retracement level, currently at 883-884, there is resistance from 885 to 888(888 being a quad top including the overnights), and then 892-895. To downside from here, look for 879.50, 877, 872-875 areas. There is POSSIBLE short setting up on failure to make a new high, but not yet confirmed on this low volume Expiry Friday afternoon. Futures Trade Signals remains FLAT.

  Jonathan Levinson   10/18/02,  1:45:10 PM
The FED announced a weekend repo of 1.75B. I see that on the Federal Reserve Bank of NY website in the table.

However, how did you come up with a net drain of 4.5B based on that?

Also, 1.75 O/W RP - over the weekend repo. What day do they actually repo?

A O/N RP I believe is next business day.

As I've been discussing for the past weeks, repurchase agreements or repos involve the purchase of bank securities for cash by the fed, and require the repurchase by the banks of those securities from the fed upon expiry of the repo- so whatever O/N R/Ps were announced yesterday get taken back from the banks today. In this case, it was 6.25B expiring today. If the fed only added 1.75B, then the remainder of the expiring 6.25B becomes a drain of 4.5B.

I spoke with the NY Fed earlier this week, and they informed me that we count each calendar day, so a weekend repo expires Monday.

  Jim Brown   10/18/02,  1:38:06 PM
Swing Trade Exit Point Alert - OEX/SPX/DJX/DIA/SPY
Lower the stop loss on the current SHORT signal to a trade at OEX 450. (I know that is only one point lower but there are three lower tops around 448.50-449. I would hate to see another .10 cent stop run at 449 and then a roll over. That has happened twice this week.) I am going to issue a LONG signal for a move over 450.

  John Seckinger   10/18/02,  1:34:34 PM
Volatility Index lower by 1.61% and back below the highly-watched 40 level. A close at this level could give bears a reason to square positions ahead of the weekend.

  Jonathan Levinson   10/18/02,  1:33:53 PM
The COMPX has rallied back to its 1280 resistance level from a range low of just above 1270. If the day high holds at 1287, I will expect a slow, grinding day for the remainder of the session. Particular on opex day, prices have a way of parking themselves, and on individual stocks, look for the nearest round number as the end of the day approaches- sometimes, price will gravitate to these option expiry levels and just stick as market makers attempt to keep the price at their projected targets for the day.

The stochastics on all daily and shorter timeframes 5(3) settings are either topping or in various stages of bear rolls, though somewhat chopped up from the rangebound action we're seeing. The TRINQ remains flat at 1.05 and the TICK.NQ is lightly positive at +152.

  Jim Brown   10/18/02,  1:33:29 PM
Swing Trade Signals
Looks like they may be trying to take them up one more time as we head into the afternoon. Traders are now faced with a quandary. Do we wait for the stop loss at OEX 451 or do we just bail here at 448 and go play golf the rest of the afternoon. (just kidding since we write until midnight or later on Fridays)

This will show us where the real resistance is located. In theory it should have moved down slightly from the 451 area as traders who wanted to get out on the last bounce but did not get triggered lower their ask to get hit earlier next time. (I said in theory) That would put resistance somewhere in the 449-450 area.

However, traders who were planning on buying the afternoon dip, now not seeing a dip, may be moving into the market to try and beat an expected positive earnings announcement from MMM and others on Monday morning. The A/D line it rapidly improving and that could generate some short covering as well.

You end up looking at all the conflicting scenarios and trying to decide which is most likely. At this point I think it is least likely we will see a significant sell off before the close. I think it is more likely there will be stronger short covering from those holdouts that just "knew" the market would take profits before the week was out.

After careful consideration I am going to lower the stop loss and prepare to go long. I think the risk here is not being long on Monday morning. The SOX is on the verge of going positive after the worst book-to-bill number in ages. The October madness is in full control. Stay tuned for a new signal.

  Alan   10/18/02,  1:29:47 PM
Index Futures
Futures Trade EXIT
ES suggested 879 trail stop hits, from the earlier morning Short, Model is now FLAT
At 12:20 PM, had provided reasons why 877 and 879.50 might be a range as both are retracements today (867/887=877, 872.50/887=829.50), and that anyone Short ES from the 885 to 887 level might consider taking Short profits within the 877-878 level (where it traded roughly for an hour), and use 879 as trail stop.

  Jim Brown   10/18/02,  1:19:11 PM
Swing Trade Signals
End of day strategy. With the market going sideways when it should be taking profits this is setting up for a positive move on Monday. Regardless of where we are at 3:45 if we have not been stopped out I am going to close the position. There are quite a few earnings on Monday. The leader is MMM before the open.

MMM is the largest weighted stock in the Dow and with an earnings win and multi dollar spike the Dow could be energized again. Here are some other earnings on Monday. Link

  Steven Price   10/18/02,  1:12:00 PM
Reader Question:Your comments please on EBAY, got puts when stock at 58.60; Appears to be a little strong! Thanks, Jim

Response: EBAY $59.45 (+1.30) Ebay did have an impressive rebound today, but failed again at $60, as it has all week. I still think the stock has room to fall, and I wouldn't close the position. While they did beat earnings, they had to contend with lower ad revenues, and there are some questions about just how much more they can grow their listings.

  Alan   10/18/02,  1:07:26 PM
Index Futures
1PM ES 877 is 50% retracement of today's low/high of 867/887, ES 879.50 is the 50% retrace of 872.50/887. ES has been sideways the last hour between 877 and 879s. The next lower ES support is 872-875, the next higher resistance is 882-884.

  John Seckinger   10/18/02,  12:57:54 PM
Dow currently at 8258. High on October 15th was 8251. As long as prices remain in the red, I do expect this level to fall and selling pressure to accelerate. What does the bond market say? Fives are up 4.5 while tens are higher by 5.5 ticks. A steepener and bearish for stocks. Wildcard? Yes, the Utility Index, which is right on that pivotal 219 level.

  Jim Brown   10/18/02,  12:36:23 PM
Swing Trade Entry Point Alert - QQQ
A reader just pointed out that the QQQ trigger of $23.75 from the game plan last night was hit just after 11:10. My alarm did not trigger due to an operator error. If you were following the game plan entry point you should be short the QQQ from $23.75 with a stop at 24.50. Sorry for dropping the ball.

  Jeff Bailey   10/18/02,  12:36:22 PM
For those that are into it... Each day, after the close, I write down in my journal the bullish % readings for each index ($bpndx), ($oex.x), ($spx.x), ($nya.x), ($compq), ($indu) ..... On August 9, Dorsey's NYSE bullish % reversed up. At the close the NYSE finished at 490. Now... the next three days did see the NYSE edge lower, but that third day a sharp reversal from a morning low took place and the NYSE then traded higher over the next six session's before reaching its relative high of 516.

With Dorsey's NYSE bullish % just reversing higher yesterday, I could see a modest pullback to 460 after today's option expiration. However, be on the alert for a bold break above current highs! In August, the NYSE made it up to 515 without any benefit of a bottom. Now.... NOW... NOW, I stress NOW, there's at least some formation of a bottom within the past three months.


  Steven Price   10/18/02,  12:34:31 PM
Just a thought, but with mortgage rates on the rise, how will Consumer Confidence be affected heading into the holiday shopping season? obviously this is a double edged sword, because if funds flow out of bonds and back into stocks, then that may help confidence, but we can't have it both ways. My guess is that a slowdown in the housing market will hurt more than the stock market will help initially, because of the tremendous fund outflows leaving fewer investors in the market to profit from a rally.

  Alan   10/18/02,  12:32:53 PM
Index Futures
ES 877 is 50% retracement of today's low/high of 867/887 and the current level, matching Dow cash 8250 support. The next lower ES support is 872-875

  Jeff Bailey   10/18/02,  12:28:04 PM
30-year YIELD ($TYX.X) 5.096% ... YIELD off best levels of the session. "Stretched it's wings today" just above bearish resistance trend. Can perhaps see how 5.2% is key technical resistance for this YIELD as it was a spread-triple-bottom sell in August (after red 8). Link

Can make some rather obvious observations regarind the Dow Industrials and it's point and figure chart. Link

  Jonathan Levinson   10/18/02,  12:27:50 PM
Today's runup was very impressive- another golf clap is in order. The five year yield has just gone negative, and C dropped 40 cents like a bad habit before settling out, down .45 on the day. HUI has just gone green and XAU is, as usual, lagging slightly but its heart is in the right place. The COMPX is hovering at flat on the day. Spectacular action on opex day, which so often can be dead flat.


  Alan   10/18/02,  12:25:08 PM
Index Futures
With ES trading at/near 877-878 level currently at 12:23 PM, anyone still SHORT from the last ENTRY signal, I would suggest taking some Short profit here, or use a Trail Stop at 879.00 for the cover.

  Jim Brown   10/18/02,  12:21:28 PM
Swing Trade Entry Point Alert - OEX/SPX/DJX/DIA/SPY
We were triggered on the 1/2 position SHORT entry at 12:19:40 when the OEX traded below 447. SPX 880.32, DIA 82.80, SPY 88.31, DJX 82.74, NDX 943.44, Compx 1276.82, QQQ 23.45, Emini 880.00.

The next entry point is for the final 1/4 position SHORT at an OEX trade of 444. This will give us a full SHORT position.

  Jeff Bailey   10/18/02,  12:21:08 PM
Western Digital (WDC) $5.90 +3.5% ... talked about this one as bullish months ago near current level, maybe higher. Little bugger holds tough Link and stock has really been an "outperformer" as depicted by relative strength chart. Link

  John Seckinger   10/18/02,  12:19:00 PM
Microsoft has been at the $53 mark for a bit now. Any thoughts?

Response: This highly-watched software behemoth should test resistance above near the 53.40 level and let traders know how much underpinning strength really exists. If this level is cleared, the 200 DMA looms above at 54.45. More conservative longs can look for a pullback to the 51 area. Another thing worth noting is the possibility that the 22 DMA will cross above the 50 DMA (47.66 and 48.01, respectively); adding to demand. For very aggressive traders, the 22 PMA (five minute chart, 52.64) can be used as a pivot level. As always, watch for traps.

  Alan   10/18/02,  12:18:42 PM
Index Futures
Reader Question: I placed a retracement bracket on the ES chart from today's low (approx 866) to today's high (approx 887). You've placed yours from 872.50/887. Why did you use 872.5 as your starting level?

Yes, ES low today was 866-867, however 872-875 has been a pivot I've spoken about a few times this week, and since I do not expect ES to retrace today all the way to 866, I chose a first target of 872.50 for my retracement calculation (as 872-75 was also a breakout level at about 10:15 AM today) to come up with a 879.50 possible down ES target today (872.50/887 50% retacement=879.50) As 879.50 ES level is currently printing at 12:18 PM, so this becomes "ES 879.50 first down target hit"

  Jim Brown   10/18/02,  12:16:44 PM
SEBL There was a news report on CNBC this morning that SEBL had denied that MSFT was buying them or investing in them in any way. (right!, and we always believe those preannouncement rumors too.)

  Jeff Bailey   10/18/02,  12:11:03 PM
Software shaping up? According to Dorsey/Wright & Associates, the software sector bullish % (BPSOFT) has reversed up to "bull alert" status at 18%. Seeing some bullishness from sector bellwether Microsoft (MSFT) Link and PeopleSoft (PSFT) Link

Oracle (ORCL) not nearly as bullish supply/demand chart. Link

  Steven Price   10/18/02,  12:09:58 PM
Reader Question: Following up on your last reader comment, the buzz has been that MSFT will acquire Siebel. If that was the case, what would be the short term effect on the MSFT? Acquisition of this size have not been well received lately.

Response: Siebel (SEBL), which posted its first quarterly loss, is currently trading $6.13 (-1.17), but if the rumor were true, I would expect SEBL to be trading much higher. SEBL also denied the rumor. Acquisitions almost always sent the acquiring stock lower initially, so it would most likely take MSFT down at first, but I don't place much value in the rumor, simply based on action in the stocks.

  Jonathan Levinson   10/18/02,  12:02:16 PM
Other than that spectacular 25 point ramp, it's been a quiet day. The TRINQ is holding just above 1, while QQV gave up its 2 point gain and is now down .70 on the day to 47.36. The TICK.NQ is at 81. With the COMPX up a mere 7 points, the indicators are confirming that today could turn negative with the smallest of pushes, and it remains to be seen which direction will prevail. Bond yields are well off their highs but still green, so we're in wait-and-see mode. 1290 COMPX seems to be the ceiling, as does 890 SPX.

  John Seckinger   10/18/02,  11:52:24 AM
Per 11:13:38 Post, the 8287 level has acted as a pivot during the last minutes. This level was simply the high during the first five minutes of trading (read: opening). I am not too confident above a rise in equities from current levels, but the Utility Index has now risen back above 219 and it will be interesting to see if this becomes a catalyst. Ticker: UTY.

  Steven Price   10/18/02,  11:44:00 AM
Reader Question:

I was wondering if your heard the report from Bloomberg, that Microsoft is suppose to make a huge announcement on monday with regard to either an acquisition or partnership.

Also your thoughts on why IBM would have a $7.00 surge and Microsoft would be in the $1.00 range on way better than expected earnings, do you think it has anything to do with today being expiration friday and that there is so much open interest for calls???

Response: You make some interesting points. There is 110,000 combined open interest on the October 50 strike (calls and puts) in MSFT, so there are certainly option holders selling the rally to capture profits, and also buying dips under $50 if the stock drops. There are also another 60,000 contracts on the 55 strike, so in the unlikely case the stock were to rally to that point we'd see selling there as well. I think you saw a much bigger rally in IBM because the stock had been sold off so severely after the EDS warning and on expectations that IBM's earnings would also miss expectations. Microsoft had also been beaten up a little, but there were expectations that the company would meet or beat estimates, so it wasn't nearly as big of a surprise.

  Linda Piazza   10/18/02,  11:39:07 AM
KO Update: Currently trading at 46.30, down from a high of 46.65. I'd expected KO to bounce a bit from the 43.50-45 area before turning over and retesting. (See yesterday's posts.) This morning, I've been paying special attention to volume considerations, as I don't want to see KO's move up on strong volume if this is to be considered a viable put play. Although KO's volume is relatively strong today, it's nowhere near the volume levels from the previous two days' precipitous fall, so volume considerations do fit. I've been watching for a fall through 43.50 or a rollover between 47-47.50, but hourly stochastics appear ready to roll over now. I've been following this ad nauseum as an exercise for those who might be new to options trading and who might want to know how to examine a possible trade, not necessarily as a recommendation to buy KO puts. However, I do have a conservative put position in KO. Because it's a conservative January put position, I'm willing to let KO retest that 47.50 area, and the 22 and 50-dma's right above that. If experienced traders decide to take a position in KO, don't overleverage, especially ahead of a break of the 43.50 area.

  Alan   10/18/02,  11:35:17 AM
Index Futures
I apologize for the one somewhat confusing earlier entry post. This weekend I would like to cover Entries, Exits, etc in a website column. ES holds support 1 at 883.75, and Dow cash holds 8300. Given the possible confusion on the short entry: If you Shorted in the ES 885-887 level, I would hold the position with a Trail Stop of 1 pt (to lock in a minimum of 1 pt gain, and place a bid to cover 5 points under your entry. ES 879.50 would be a 50% retracement of today's 872.50/887 level; look for Dow cash to leak lower under 8300.

  Jim Brown   10/18/02,  11:34:43 AM
Swing Trade Entry Point Alert - OEX/SPX/DJX/DIA/SPY
This is a recap of the current open signals.

We are short 1/4 position currently with a stop loss at OEX 451.

Go SHORT another 1/2 position with an OEX trade at 447.

Go SHORT the final 1/4 position with an OEX trade at 444.

It appears OEX 451 may be the real resistance level we thought it was. If we get another failure from this current bounce you might want to cheat on the entry and go at 448 instead. That is just below the last dip. Your call.

  Jim Brown   10/18/02,  11:31:01 AM
Swing Trade Entry Point Alert - OEX/SPX/DJX/DIA/SPY
Go SHORT the final 1/4 position with an OEX trade below 444. Complete recap of the open signals to follow.

  Alan   10/18/02,  11:28:02 AM
Index Futures
There is a VERY important typo error in my 11:15 AM post, "your short fill could be anywhere between 874.50 to 876" when of course that should have read "your short fill could be anywhere from 884.50 to 886" Typo with hitting the 7 key and not the 8 key. Apologies.

  Jim Brown   10/18/02,  11:25:52 AM
Swing Trade Entry Point Alert - OEX/SPX/DJX/DIA/SPY
Change the position size on the 447 entry to 1/2 position. The A/D line is beginning to drop and the futures are rolling over. 451 appears to be the real top.

  Jim Brown   10/18/02,  11:20:43 AM
Swing Trade Signals
I would be more aggressive than add 1/4 at 447 but the A/D line is strong and the Advancing volume has been improving. If these roll over as well then we will become more aggressive on the short.

  Jim Brown   10/18/02,  11:18:27 AM
Swing Trade Entry Point Alert - OEX/SPX/DJX/DIA/SPY
Add to the 1/4 position short with another 1/4 position with an OEX trade below 447.00. This could be a failure of the 450 resistance but there can always be another run. Add only 1/4 position and we will add to it again later.

  Alan   10/18/02,  11:15:16 AM
Index Futures
Futures Trade Signal commet
Depending upon your Short Entry from my post, your short fill could be anywhere between 874.50 to 876. I'm staying short myself, as 888 was the upper gap fill from 3AM this morning. Shorts would now like to see Dow cash lose 8300.

  John Seckinger   10/18/02,  11:13:38 AM
I am fortunate that the yield curve remained slightly strong as equities recovered. If the Dow closes above 8353, I will most likely go flat this weekend (bond trade). Looking at a five minute chart, 8318 and 8287 could become pivotal as well. Other thoughts include: Relatively strong dollar could erode strength in five year sector, and rally above 111'21 in five year note (FV02Z currently at 111'14) could spur a short covering rally.

  Alan   10/18/02,  11:06:48 AM
Index Futures
Futures Trade Signal
Go Short ES 884.0 or better, 1 pt stop

  Alan   10/18/02,  11:03:35 AM
CAncel 10:58 Futures Signal possible Entry post. Market now looking for overnight upside Gap fill, no current signals.

  Steven Price   10/18/02,  11:02:47 AM
Ask the Analyst: Just a reminder to send this weekend's requests to asktheanalyst@OptionInvestor.com

  Jim Brown   10/18/02,  11:00:45 AM
Swing Trade Signals
The Current resistance levels on the OEX are 448, 449.42, 450, 453.50, 458.31. There is a very good chance this bounce will fail here at 450. The markets are at the high of the day but not the late afternoon high from yesterday. I want to go with the current risk at 1/4 position short and look to add to it at 450 IF THE INTERNALS warrant it.

  Alan   10/18/02,  10:58:58 AM
Now awaiting Short futures Signal, which is if ES loses 880 firmly, then go short at market, with Limit of 879.0, same 1 pt stop.

  Steven Price   10/18/02,  10:58:45 AM
Amgen (AMGN) $50.08 (-0.06) I like the support AMGN has found at the 200-dma the last four days. I am hesitant to enter long here, with resistance at $52.00, but I don't think we'll get a pullback the the PnF breakout point of $49 to enter. If we get some upward momentum, I'll set an alert at $52.01 to decide on long entry at that point.

  Jim Brown   10/18/02,  10:57:05 AM
Swing Trade Exit Point Alert - OEX/SPX/DJX/DIA/SPY
Cancel that last stop loss change. Maintain the current stop loss on the final 1/4 position short at OEX 451.

  Alan   10/18/02,  10:55:43 AM
There is a pivot area of 872-875 which we've seen a few times this past week, once it resolved itself 30 minutes ago to the upside, now facing resistance at 883, and Dow 8270-8300.

  Jeff Bailey   10/18/02,  10:55:16 AM
Don't you just hate it! Held DIA $83 puts overnight, buggers dipped to $81.50 and had a nice profit, then.... "poof!" as DIA rallies back. Got to let them go and take what premium there was, or risk "no bid" on close above $83.00.

Continued selling in Treasuries was my risk and I would have thought some buying in Treasuries this morning. Not the case. Some trader talk that large pension funds are selling Treasury holdings and funding pension plans as stocks look to have formed a near-term bottom.

  Alan   10/18/02,  10:52:28 AM
Markets at day highs.

  Jim Brown   10/18/02,  10:50:42 AM
Swing Trade Exit Point Alert - OEX/SPX/DJX/DIA/SPY
There is a pretty good bounce underway. Let's exit the remaining 1/4 position short with an OEX trade above 448.50. This is just above yesterdays 2:PM high of 448.19.

  John Seckinger   10/18/02,  10:38:55 AM
Bonds now on their session lows as the Dow tries to rebound. Currently at 107'30, the Dec bond is now lower by 5% this week and having one of its worst weeks since mid-November of last year. My opinion is that bonds might not be a great correlation with stocks until it is clear selling due to the ECB meeting (left rates unchanged) is over. We will most likely not get that confirmation during trading today.

  Jim Brown   10/18/02,  10:35:30 AM
Swing Trade Entry Point Alert - OEX/SPX/DJX/DIA/SPY
Add to the 1/4 position short with another 1/4 position with an OEX trade below 444. The bounce is fading but I want to be cautious about getting back in. 1/4 at a time!

  Alan   10/18/02,  10:32:33 AM
Index Futures
Futures Trade Signal EXIT Point
Very quickly stopped out at the 1 point stop loss from the Short ES 874.50 entry, $ -50 per contract.

  Jonathan Levinson   10/18/02,  10:29:15 AM
The COMPX is just below the 1269 level which acted as support yesterday. Its day low was just above 1250 which was slightly above gap support from Wednesday. The TRINQ blew off its oversold readings, and I presume that the CBOE p/c ratio, which came in way too high for a bear's liking at 1.40, will also ease off on this move back up to resistance. The QQV is off its highs and now below 49, so it looks like the opening wave of selling and its oversold readings have been eased. The market is now "free" to choose a direction.

  Alan   10/18/02,  10:28:59 AM
Index Futures
Futures Trade Signal
Is Short ES from 874.50, maintain 1 pt stop, +3 point target, place a buy to cover order 3 pts under your short entry

  Jim Brown   10/18/02,  10:27:51 AM
Swing Trade Exit Point Alert - OEX/SPX/DJX/DIA/SPY
We were stopped out of the 2/3 position at 10:23:36 when the OEX traded at 445. SPX 875.36, DIA 82.40, SPY 87.82, DJX 82.32, DNX 934.38, Compx 1267.23, QQQ 23.24, Emini 875.50. We still have a 1/4 position open and will look to reenter this 1/2 position on the next dip to 443.

  Jim Brown   10/18/02,  10:26:42 AM
Swing Trade Exit Point Alert - OEX/SPX/DJX/DIA/SPY
We were stopped out of the 2/3 position at 10:23:36 when the OEX traded at 445. SPX 875.36, DIA 82.40, SPY 87.82, DJX 82.32, DNX 934.38, Compx 1267.23, QQQ 23.24, Emini 875.50. We still have a 1/4 position open and will look to reenter this 1/2 position on the next dip.

  Alan   10/18/02,  10:26:38 AM
Index Futures
Futures Trade Entry Alert
go SHORT at 874.5 or better, 1 pt stop

  Steven Price   10/18/02,  10:23:27 AM
Stock funds are estimated to have seen an outflow of $9.3 billion during the week ending Oct. 16. That was during an up week! They lost $2.7 billion the week before. August had been the first time in 14 years that equity funds saw a net debit during a month in which the market showed an increase. This is like meat for the bears, since it will be tough to sustain an upward trend with huge profit taking on any rally.

  Alan   10/18/02,  10:21:21 AM
Index Futures
This weekend I shall explain 2 terms I'm going to start using next week: Buy Stops and Sell stops: There was a long ES signal at 867 at Dow cash 8150 but I did not give you enough time to evaluate it for yourself. There was indeed a Long Scalp available there as ES is printing 872. MSFT is aiming right at the 52.50 level it seems (1/2 way between 50 and 55 strike). Trend remains UP since 10AM's Dow 8150, ES resistance here at 875, with support 1 now 872.

  Jim Brown   10/18/02,  10:20:20 AM
Swing Trade Exit Point Alert - OEX/SPX/DJX/DIA/SPY
The A/D line is improving and the Advancing volume is increasing. The next resistance level will be the first morning bounce high at 444.22. Let's close 2/3 of the short position (1/2 of a full position) if the OEX trades at 445.00. We will keep the remainder open until stopped at 451.

  Jeff Bailey   10/18/02,  10:15:26 AM
Dow Industrials (INDU) 8,176 -1.18% .... yesterday I noted and found "suspicious" that the Diamonds (DIA) were finding intra-day resistance at $83. Not sure, but late last night was looking at some point/figure charts and saw the INDU Link , with bearish resistance trend right at 8,350. Today's trade at 8,147.20 is enough to have INDU giving 3-box reversal lower. I would not be a bit surprised to see the INDU give a "sell signal" at some point (currently 8,000) and then reverse back higher and break above trend.

In recent weeks, we've noted other stocks give a sell signal after a nice rebound. There's an old saying in p/f charting that the first buy signal off the bottom is often times a buying opportunity. As such, a trader doesn't necessarily "buy the sell signal," but instead, monitors for a reversal, then takes the reversal higher, with a tight stop just under the reversal low.

JNJ at $52 Link is perhaps an example, and a stock profiled bullish here at $55.

FDX at $48 Link is another example, and a stock profiled bullish here at $51.

The best "times" to look for such patterns is when the bullish % are or have been low and reversing higher, and it stocks that trade ABOVE TREND, with strong relative strength versus the SPX.

  John Seckinger   10/18/02,  10:13:15 AM
I am expecting better bids in the five year note than tens today. One reason was Friday's release of the August trade deficit report, rising to a record 38.46 billion. July's deficit was revised higher at 35.1. These reports should hinder Q3 GDP, released on October 31st. Another reason is that weaker equities should send cash towards the shorter-end of the curve.

  Steven Price   10/18/02,  10:09:15 AM
Omnicom (OMC) $56.54 (-1.30) In spite of the market rebounding slightly, OI put play OMC is looking very heavy and I like entries here.

  Steven Price   10/18/02,  10:06:35 AM
RJ Reynolds (RJR): $40.41 (-0.41) I've got RJR on the radar screen for a move under $40 as a possible short. The company has earnings Oct 22 (next Tuesday), so we won't play it short at OI, but a rollover below $40 looks like it could achieve $35 quickly. One note though, the company has already suffered from lower earnings forecasts, so a surprise could certainly give it a boost. Therefore it would be a VERY short term play, to be closed by Tuesday.

  Alan   10/18/02,  10:05:54 AM
Index Futures
10 AM : many futures traders either completely avoid Option Friday, or at least the first 30 minutes as Option Market Makers adjust their inventory.
ES 867, YM 8140, NQ 928. I'm now looking for a Long Scalp as I expect Dow 8150 to offer some support, and that level is 200 points under last nights high.

  Jonathan Levinson   10/18/02,  10:04:58 AM
The Fed has announced a weekend repo of 1.75B, which is a net drain of 4.5B. With bond yields still modestly positive, there's still the potential for the massive bond market to fuel a rise in stocks today, but the 4.5B drain today could well keep a lid on the upside fireworks.

  Jonathan Levinson   10/18/02,  9:59:17 AM
The COMPX has broken below yesterday's low with a print below 1260. The TRINQ is getting up there at 2.97, while the QQV is up 1.94 to 50 even. I've just enetered a 1/4 position in C puts for good measure. Still long my slightly underwater GE puts, as well as the QQQ puts.

  Jim Brown   10/18/02,  9:56:32 AM
Swing Trade Entry Point Alert - OEX/SPX/DJX/DIA/SPY
Go short the final 1/4 position with an OEX trade below 440.

  Jim Brown   10/18/02,  9:55:34 AM
Swing Trade Entry Point Alert - OEX/SPX/DJX/DIA/SPY
We were triggered on the 1/2 position short at 9:52:43 when the OEX traded below 441.50. We are now short a 3/4 position with a stop at OEX 451.

  John Seckinger   10/18/02,  9:52:23 AM
Looking at the Dow, the 50 DMA (exp) is at 8175. Looking elsewhere, you seem to drown in a sea of red. For bulls, it would be encouraging if the US Dollar can keep above the 108 level (currently at 108.38). It is not helpful when the Utility Index keeps posting a series of lower highs and remains below the 219 level (currently at 214.95).

  Jim Brown   10/18/02,  9:52:20 AM
Swing Trade Entry Point Alert - OEX/SPX/DJX/DIA/SPY
We were triggered on our 1/4 short position at 9:49:35 when the OEX traded below 443. SPX 872.07, DIA 82.01, SPY 87.50, DJX 81.97, NDX 928.28, Compx 1260.11, QQQ 23.07, Emini 871.25. The initial stop loss will be OEX 451 on this 1/4 position. We still have a signal for 1/2 position at an OEX trade at 441.50. I would love to get another bounce and get another 1/4 at a higher number.

  Steven Price   10/18/02,  9:51:19 AM
Semiconductor Sector Index (SOX.X): 256.21 (-10.40) Jim's earlier commentary about the book to bill ratio is right on as far as highlighting the industry problems. What is also worth noting is that The August market rally, which ended Augsut 22, coincided nicely with the SOX running into resistance at its 50-dma. The group was stopped dead in its tracks at that level in August and we are seeing similar action the last few days. The failure of both the semis and the Dow under this MA should be watched closely, as a breakthrough could be significant.

  Alan   10/18/02,  9:49:45 AM
Index Futures
MSFT 51.40 day lows.

  Jim Brown   10/18/02,  9:48:44 AM
Swing Trade Entry Point Alert - OEX/SPX/DJX/DIA/SPY
It appears the bounce is failing. Go short 1/4 position at an OEX trade at 443.

  Linda Piazza   10/18/02,  9:43:23 AM
Dollar down, ten-year bond yield up, gold up, down volume swamping up volume: so far, these favorite indicators of mine aren't giving a clear signal as to market direction. I'm anxious to hear Jonathan's report about Fed repo.

  Alan   10/18/02,  9:41:55 AM
Index Futures
JIm the moment you typed that, ES dipped to 870 and found some buying; currently at 872. Dow dipped to under 8200 at 8190 and found some small buying. Shall use Dow cash 8200 for sense of up/down market direction. NQ 934 (NDX) futures the weakest index since open.

  Steven Price   10/18/02,  9:41:47 AM
Reader Question: Hi there, Does the NPSP stock offering affect this play or entry???? Thank you!

NPS Pharmaceuticals (NPSP):$25.00 (-2.00) NPSP said it will be offering 4 million additional shares. I would hold off on new entries at the moment, but right now the stock bounced right at the 200-dma of $24.79 (low of $24.80), so I'm not ready to bail on the current position just yet.

  Jim Brown   10/18/02,  9:40:51 AM
Swing Trade Entry Point Alert - OEX/SPX/DJX/DIA/SPY
We got a minor bounce at 441.67. This gives us our breakdown entry point in case the bounce fails. Go short 1/2 position on an OEX trade below 441.50. We will continue to look for a higher entry on a continued bounce but if it fails quickly we want to be ready.

  Jim Brown   10/18/02,  9:36:50 AM
Swing Trade Signals
No entry yet. I want to give it a few more minutes to see if the bulls buy the dip.

  Jonathan Levinson   10/18/02,  9:34:16 AM
Opening TRINQ 1.9, and.. get this... no gap on the Nasdaq!

  Steven Price   10/18/02,  9:33:44 AM
I really expected the Microsoft earnings to push us into the mulitple resistance levels between 8300-8400 and I was looking at the 61.8% retracement level at 8359 as the final test in that range. However, it looks like we'll have a much harder time getting through if positive news from MSFT can't even give us that push.

  John Seckinger   10/18/02,  9:32:51 AM
It has been over one week (began last Thursday), and I am still not 100% sure that the fund that went long bonds hoping for an ECB ease (which didn't happen) is done selling. Price action will let me know, and the 30-year is lower once again - down '8 ticks at 108-17. Strong support to the downside is at 107, but that is well over a point away. Looking at the curve, fives are unchanged and tens are up only one tick. Nothing special.

  Alan   10/18/02,  9:28:36 AM
Index Futures
As a reminder for those without realtime futures quotes, if you wish to check the overnight futures, and what happened around 3 AM (off of Europe), go to www.livecharts.com and use ticker ES02Z and select Chart, All Sessions, 15minute chart. It's free, but delayed.

2 thoughts on open : Longs rush to take profits as they are not getting their expected gap up, or dip buyers are still in the market. If this was not option expiry, as it is a Friday with a great deal of Long Profits, one would expect some Friday profit taking - however Option Fridays can skew that and make for sometimes difficult to read market days. ES is 873-874 currently, which is the area of Thur's Lows. Overnight high 889. Dow futures indicate dow cash open of about 8230; NDX futures are also currently trading at yesterday's Lows (940-941)
Will most likely avoid the first 15 minutes and allow a direction to establish.

  Jeff Bailey   10/18/02,  9:25:46 AM
09:00 Update is posted. Link

  Alan   10/18/02,  9:17:59 AM
Index Futures
ES 873, YM 8200, NQ 938
Good morning. You'll have to click 'missed a day?' and click on Thur's date to read the posts, but last night between 230 AM and 330 AM Futures Trade Signals had shorted ES futures right around Europe's 3AM open near the chart resistance level of 890 for a small +2.50 ES point gain.
Europe at 3 AM often can produce some type of trade, Great entry but "should have" stayed short :(; however did not feel like staying up the rest of night :)
Perspective from above current quotes, at 3AM futures were: ES 889, YM 8342, NQ 962
Last night: Everyone was expecting a Friday gapup (and perhaps looking to short it) similar to the gap up we saw Thur morning, so now instead, the market gaps down for us by a fair amount as the Dow is about 100 points lower than last night. And on an option friday expiry :( Europe gapped up, sold off all day and is rather red for the day.

  Jim Brown   10/18/02,  9:17:25 AM
Swing Trade Signals
What a difference a few hours of darkness can make. The Microsoft earnings boost disappeared overnight and new earnings stories weigh on the market. S&P downgraded GS, MWD and MER putting a cloud on the finance sector. It appears bonds are not done with Pimco saying the 10 yr at 4.0-4.25%.

The anticipated market bounce due to the MSFT earnings appears to be dead. The good news was overshadowed by the book-to-bill number, which I discussed in the wrap last night. The game plan for today was to short the opening bounce as close to 8350-8400 as possible. Since that bounce is not likely at the open we will wait for a few minutes and see if the October bulls buy the initial dip.

If we don't get a dip bounce we will look at entering a short around the OEX 443 level or below. This was just below the intraday lows from yesterday.

  Jonathan Levinson   10/18/02,  8:50:57 AM
Since CNNfn decided to not report the Philly Fed number yesterday when it was released, I've become measurably more sceptical of the media's reporting of or explanations for moves in the market. Well, CNNfn, which is no longer occupying my start page in Explorer, is blaming this morning's dump in the futures on ERICY and SUNW. I personally blame it on OpEx antics, given that the market never thought twice about either GE or C's earnings reports. Either way, the 3AM Geyser got pointed south for a change, and 6AM compounded it, with NDX -17.50 and S&P -8.50. QQQ is off .35 from its close to 23.20. The Fed owes 6.25B today just to avoid draining liquidity, and I expect a smaller or no repo today, because the selloff in bonds is, in my opinion, more destructive to bulls than a selloff in equities would be. By draining some liquidity and cooperating with market makers who seek lower prices to blow out some October contracts, the Fed might be able to stem the rally in equities and bond yields. So, we'll have to see. On the other hand, perhaps the markets were just overbought :)

  Linda Piazza   10/18/02,  8:50:30 AM
For what it's worth, Bloomberg reported this morning that markets have been down 5 out of the last 7 days after Microsoft reports.

  Jonathan Levinson   10/18/02,  8:50:09 AM
Bonds have opened up, with yields modestly lower with FVX down 4 bp.


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