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Daily Newsletter, Monday, 12/31/2001

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PremierInvestor.net Newsletter                 Monday 12-31-2001
                                                  section 1 of 1
Copyright  2001, All rights reserved.
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************************* HAPPY NEW YEAR ************************

Market Wrap:      Bring On The New Year
Watch List:       QQQ, JDSU, INTC, MSFT
Play of the Day:  Ready for the Bounce to Begin
Market Sentiment: 2001 is in the books.

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U.S. Market Numbers
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MARKET WRAP  (view in courier font for table alignment)
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        12-31-2001        High      Low     Volume Advance/Decline
DJIA    10021.60 -115.40 10137.60 10019.10  954 mln   1615/1558	
NASDAQ   1950.40 - 36.80  1989.17  1950.40 1.39 bln   1945/1846
S&P 100   584.28 -  7.47   591.75   584.17   totals   3560/3404
S&P 500  1148.08 - 12.94  1161.16  1148.04           
RUS 2000  488.50 -  5.12   494.20   488.41
DJ TRANS 2639.99 -  3.06  2658.97  2636.63
VIX        23.29 +  0.79    23.41    22.27
Put/Call Ratio      0.63
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===========
Market Wrap
===========

Bring On The New Year

I suppose Monday's trading was a microcosm for the year.  The
major averages finished lower by a painful amount, selling off at
the open and accelerating to the downside into the close.  For the
day, the Dow Jones Industrial Average (INDU) lost 1.13 percent,
the S&P 500 (SPX) dropped 1.11 percent, and the Nasdaq-100 (NDX)
shed 2.71 percent.  It was a dismal day to end a dismal year for
the bulls.  The one-year performance of the major averages reveals
as much:

Index    2001(%)

INDU       -7.11
SPX       -13.04
NDX       -25.92

The year questioned many preconceived notions about investing and
trading.  It paid to fight the Fed during its interest-rate-cutting
binge, which was unthinkable prior to 2001.  Through September 21,
when the major averages bottomed, the Fed was losing the battle of
stimulating the market and economy through its benign monetary
policy.  It was preached to never fight the Fed, which was wrong
for the majority of this year, starting after the first surprise
rate cut on January 3.  

The bear market that lasted through September 21 was one of the
most fierce in financial history and most certainly tested the
theory of betting with the Fed.  It was only the second time in
history that fighting the Fed proved correct.  Born in March of
2000, the bear market through which we've endured should not be
forgotten anytime soon.

The great bear impacted corporate America just as much as Main
Street.  It began with companies like Winstar Communications and
360 Networks, then spread to others such as Exodus, AtHome, and
XO Communications.  The old blue chip names were not immune as
Polaroid and Bethlehem Steel declared bankruptcy.

Then there was Enron (NYSE:ENE), the former pinnacle of corporate
America.  Once one of the most respected companies on Wall Street,
Enron claimed the fame of the largest bankruptcy in U.S. history.
Only 18 months ago the company was valued at more than $60
billion.  Today, it's a penny stock.  Shareholders and employees
were left holding an empty bag after the leaders of the company
ran it into the ground.  The board of directors was blind to it
all.  Or were they?

Innocence was lost prior to the Enron debacle, when the
unthinkable happened on September 11.  The heart of American
capitalism was struck with ignorance, resulting in a great loss
of many of the financial world's most talented participants.  But
the subsequent rebound, in both the tangible and intangible,
revealed that democracy, freedom, and capitalism are right;
these are the forces greater than fear.

Going into the New Year, momentum is building in the economy
judging by the most recent data.  Short-term interest rates
remain exceptionally low and inflation is under control. 
Corporate profits are returning signaled by the recent upward
revisions, which are significantly higher than the year-ago
period.  And the war against terrorism is working in the favor
of the free-world.  By most measures, better time lie ahead.

Still, the future remains unknown.  Such is the existence of
investors and traders.  But the past is a guiding light, which
is why it's so very important to hold onto what was learned in
the last year.

Monday's Market

Volume remained light during Monday's pre-holiday session.
Only 954 million shares exchanged on the NYSE, while 1.4
billion traded on the Nasdaq.  A large amount of Monday's
total volume came in the final hour of trading, when money
managers made final adjustments to portfolios.  For example,
over 1.5 million shares of Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) traded in
the last five minutes of the day.  No more than 500 thousand
shares of Softee traded in any five minute period prior to the
last hour.

The selling was evident early in the day, when the major
averages moved lower.  Stocks drifted sideways during the
majority of the afternoon, but sharply slid into the closing
bell.  The late-day selling was most likely a result of last
minute tax-loss sales by individuals and money managers, who
recorded losses for 2001 instead of carrying the losses over
into 2002.

The INDU managed to hold above the psychologically significant
10,000 level, but lost more than 100 points on the day.  The
INDU's biggest losers included Eastman Kodak (NYSE:EK), Intel
(NASDAQ:INTC), Microsoft, Caterpillar (NYSE:CAT), Alcoa
(NYSE:AA), and General Electric (NYSE:GE).  Of the 30 components,
only Honeywell (NYSE:HON) finished higher, but only by two cents.

The SPX shed almost 13 percent, pressured by weakness in the
technology, financial, and healthcare segments of the market.
The SPX did, however, stop at its 10-dma Monday, which currently
sits at the 1147.19 level.  Below the 10-dma, the SPX may find
support between the 1130 and 1140 range, where it has built
recent bases.

Chart of the S&P 500




The NDX was the poorest performing of the three Monday, but it
was also the poorest performing for the year, so its weakness
wasn't out of the ordinary.  The NDX was pressured lower by
weakness in the biotech, semiconductor, software, and hardware
sectors.  

The NDX traded up to its 200-dma Monday in the early going, but
failed to advance past that level.  The 200-dma currently sits
at the 1615.80 level.  The NDX did, however, stop near a
retracement level at 1575.  The general area has provided support
in the past, but if broken, could pressure the NDX down to the
1500 area.

Chart of the Nasdaq 100




Monday's poorest performing sectors were found in the Nasdaq,
where the AMEX Biotechnology Index (BTK) shed 3.60 percent on
the news that Imclone (NASDAQ:IMCL) had an application rejected
for its cancer drug.  The BTK was the worst performing sector of
the day.  The Philly Semiconductor Index (SOX) was next with a
3.08 percent drop, followed by the Disk Drive Index (DDX) with
its 2.10 percent drop.

Monday's best performing sector was the Airline Index (XAL), which
added 5.22 percent on the news of a government loan granted to
America West (NYSE:AWA), whose shares gained more than 40 percent.
The Gold and Silver Index (XAU) was the only other sector index
that I track that was higher in Monday's session.  The XAU tacked
on 0.87 percent, which was most likely a flight to quality-related
bid.

The same flight to quality was seen in the Treasury market, where
yields finished lower across the board.  The benchmark 10-year
Note Yield (TNX) was off by 0.75 percent, to 5.03 percent.  The
10-year (TY02H) contract finished higher by 0.58 percent to
105.045.  Among the Treasuries, the 5-year Note Yield (FVX) fell
the most, by nearly 2 percent.  

New Day, New Year

There are several tax-related issues to consider for Wednesday's
trading as it relates to short-term price action.  First, there
are those investors who will have waited to take losses on 2002
taxes.  The reason for waiting is that an investor may have already
taken the maximum capital loss for 2001 and carried more losses
over into the new tax year, which could be used to offset any
future gains in the New Year.  The result is that 2001's worst
performing stocks could remain under tax-loss selling pressure for
another few days.  Readers who are looking for tax-loss bounce
candidates should be watching for the stock's that hold or trade
higher in the next few days as that would signal that the tax-loss
selling has run its course.

Conversely, investors holding big winning positions through 2001
may look to book those gains in the new tax season.  There's a
chance that some of 2001's best performing stocks could fall under
pressure in the next few weeks as investors with a lower cost
basis established in 2001 look to lock in those gains on 2002's
taxes.  That means those who are looking to buy some of 2001's
best performing stocks should be on the watch for artificial
weakness in the coming weeks in the form of tax-gain selling.

Both Jeff Bailey and I will be writing about the tax-related
issues in the coming days.  Until then, have a safe and enjoyable
evening.  And a profitable New Year!

Eric Utley
Premier Investor



=========================
Play-of-the-Day (Bullish)
=========================
(New Bullish High Risk/High Reward Play)

TranSwitch Corp - TXCC - close: 4.50 change: -0.17 stop: 3.98

Company Description:
TranSwitch Corporation, headquartered in Shelton, Connecticut, is 
a leading developer and global supplier of innovative high-speed 
VLSI semiconductor solutions - Connectivity Engines (TM)- to 
original equipment manufacturers who serve three fast-growing 
end-markets: the Worldwide Public Network Infrastructure, the 
Internet Infrastructure, and corporate Wide Area Networks (WANs). 
Combining its in-depth understanding of applicable global 
communication standards and its world-class expertise in 
semiconductor design, TranSwitch Corporation implements 
communications standards in VLSI solutions which deliver high 
levels of performance. (source: Company Press Release)

Why We Like It:
We're looking to TXCC as one of our tax-loss bounce candidates 
for January.  The stock has lost almost 92% from its 52-week high 
of $55.75 but has slowly been building a new up trend from its 
October lows.  On our charts we're drawn a trendline from the 
lows in late October and early November to the low in early 
December as a guide showing support for the stock.  This support 
trend line happens to coincide with the TXCC's 50-dma which also 
lines up with price support at $4.25.  The expectation is that 
shares of TXCC will enjoy a strong "January" effect and tax loss 
bounce as demand exceeds supply.  Beware that there are two major 
caution flags, which persuaded us to put TXCC in the high-risk 
section.  Number one, the semiconductor sector put in a negative 
day on Monday, which isn't that surprising given the year-end 
selling.  Yet if the SOX falls below its own 50-dma at 516 it 
could forecast a much more prolonged bout of profit taking and 
this could produce a tough environment for TXCC to rally in.  
Secondly, the point-and-figure chart for TXCC shows the stock in 
a fresh column of O's that looks pretty bearish.  Until shares 
trade back above the $5.00 mark we suggest only aggressive 
traders look for entry points.  A strong entry point could be a 
bounce at the $4.25 area.  Below $4.25 we would be very 
suspicious and look for confirmation in a rebound higher again.  
We're going to start the play with a stop at $3.98 but this is 
one play where we would definitely confirm stock direction before 
committing any capital.  If TXCC performs as we think it might, 
we'll look for a move up to the $7.00 level as our initial 
target.  Of course a move from $5 to $6 is nothing to sneeze at 
either.  Don't forget that TXCC is expected to announce earnings 
on January 17th, 2002 but we have yet to confirm it.

Picked on December 31st at $ 4.50
Change since picked:        +0.00
Earnings Date            01/17/02 (unconfirmed)






==========
Watch List
==========

The PremierInvestor.net watch list is not designed to be read
as full fledged stock picks.  Rather we would prefer to offer
it as an extra tool in today's investor toolbox.  Think of it
as a radar screen with your own radar operator pointing out
interesting developments, technical patterns or potential plays
that you may or may not have seen on your own.  Due to time
constraints we do glance at the news but rarely do we have 
time to fully read pertinent news stories, due background 
research and other necessary screens that investors should do
before making a decision.  A common exercise is to read the
entry, glance at the sector and other stocks in that industry
and then compare what's happening in the stock to what's 
happening in the broader market indices.  We hope you enjoy
the Watch List and that it proves to be a useful tool for your
own trading success.

-----------

Nasdaq-100 Index Tracking Stock - QQQ - close: 38.91 change: -1.42

WHAT TO WATCH: You're probably heard it already, but Monday was a 
disappointing end to an ugly year in the stock market.  The QQQ 
had rallied up to its 200-dma last week but today's 3.5% drop 
smells strongly of a failed rally that could forecast the next 
move lower.  Keep your eyes on the 50-dma currently at 38.67.  If 
the QQQs can hold this level of support the New Year might not 
have such a bearish beginning.  If it doesn't hold the 50-dma 
then we may find the QQQs and other tech-flavored equities as 
strong candidates for new bearish plays.




---

JDS Uniphase Corp - JDSU - close: 8.73 change: +0.27

WHAT TO WATCH: Shares of JDSU turned in a 3% gain to end 2001 but 
shares only got as far as its 15-dma near $9.00 before 
encountering selling pressure and rolling over towards the 
closing bell.  Traders will certainly be watching JDSU come 
January.  If shares close under $8.00 it might make a good short 
candidate with potential support at $7 and again at $6.  If the 
stock can close over $9.00 it could be a long candidate although 
there is a lot of potential resistance above it.  A move over $10 
would be stronger confirmation and may still allow traders a 
chance to catch any move to resistance near $12.




---

Intel Corp - INTC - close: 31.45 change: -0.79

WHAT TO WATCH: The chip sector came under some selling pressure 
on the last trading day of the year as investors took losses (or 
gains) for 2001.  The SOX.X fell 16 points and looks negative but 
remains above its 50-dma, a key support level.  In a similar 
move, shares of INTC also succumbed to profit taking today and 
dropped under key support at $32.  Yet it too has its 50-dma 
below it and both the bulls and the bears may be targeting this 
level of support, near $30, as their action point.  The move 
under $32 is very negative for short-term momentum but we suspect 
their may be buyers waiting at the $30 level.  A break below $30 
and INTC will probably find itself trading back towards $27.50.  
Right now we'd be bearish but a bounce at $30 would be 
interesting.




---

Microsoft Corp - MSFT - close: 66.27 change: -1.60

WHAT TO WATCH: Mr. Softee is another stock that should definitely 
be on everyone's watch list for January.  As one of the biggest 
big caps out there it should not be influenced by any "January 
effect" but as the biggest component in the GSO.X software index 
it will lead a big section of tech stocks lower or higher.  We 
would be watching for MSFT to bounce off its 50-dma near $65 or 
its 200-dma near $64.  Either one may be worth a very short-term 
long play (scalping a couple of points on the bounce) but more 
importantly we would be watching for shares of MSFT to hold these 
levels as a breakdown would be very negative for the sector.  Of 
course, MSFT is a component of the Nasdaq and the Dow Jones so 
its influence will be felt on both major indices.






================
Market Sentiment
================

2001 is in the books.
by Russ Moore

After seeing the DOW drop -7.0 percent, the S&P 500 -13.0 
percent, and the NASDAQ -21.0% over the last twelve months, 
perhaps it was only fitting that today’s session end in 
the red.

For much of the day the major indices stayed within a narrow 
trading range, holding losses to a minimum. Selling pressure 
intensified with an hour to go, leaving the DOW with a -1.1 
percent loss. The NASDAQ shed -1.8 percent and the big cap NDX -
2.7 percent. Volume remained thin with 946 million shares being 
exchanged on the big board and 1.39 billion on the tech index.

Sector action saw chip, hardware and software heading up the 
loser’s list. Biotech’s were hit hard after the FDA’s failure to 
approve an ImClone (IMCL) experimental cancer drug. Oil service 
and chemicals were also weak on the session. Green arrows were 
limited to the gold and airline sectors.

As we head towards the New Year, several questions remain 
unanswered. Will consumer confidence translate into investor 
confidence and help drain those over-stuffed money market 
accounts? How many earnings surprises does corporate America have 
up its’ sleeve? Will the economic recovery begin in the second 
half of 02’, or, will we see the expert prognosticators push the 
rebound out a little further? These questions, and more, should 
make for an interesting start to another year of exciting market 
action. 

The coming weeks will see us pay close attention to what the big 
players are doing via the COT report. As noted below, the 
Commercials have moved to a net-long (bullish) position on the 
NASDAQ 100 while the Small Specs dramatically increased their 
net-shorts. This increased divergence deserves our attention 
however; a similar move on the SPX would really grab us. The SPX 
is considered a better barometer of overall action and when the 
big boys/girls move into an accumulation phase while the smaller 
players add to their shorts, it’s time to load up the “call 
truck”.

I’d like to take this opportunity to wish all of you a very 
healthy, happy and prosperous New Year!


Monday 12/31 close: 23.29


VXN
Monday 12/31 close: 47.17


30-yr Bonds
Monday 12/31 close: 5.49


Total Put/Call Ratio: .73


Equity Option Put/Call Ratio: .64


Index Option Put/Call Ratio: 1.98


===

NASDAQ 100 Index (NDX/QQQ)
52-Week High: 103.51
52-Week Low:   28.19
Current close: 38.91

Volume/Open Interest
Maximum calls: 40/129,876
Maximum puts : 40/ 93,261

Moving Averages
 10 DMA 39
 20 DMA 40
 50 DMA 38
200 DMA 40

Fibanocci Retracements
Relative High: 51.95 (05/22/01)
Relative Low:  27.00 (09/21/01)
38% 36.60
50% 39.57
62% 42.59

===

S&P 100 Index (OEX)
52-Week High:  834.93
52-Week Low:   491.70
Current close: 584.29

Volume/Open Interest
Maximum calls: 590/4,382
Maximum puts : 520/4,828
Moving Averages
 10 DMA  586
 20 DMA  584
 50 DMA  578
200 DMA  599

Fibanocci Retracements
Relative High: 680.03 (05/22/01)
Relative Low:  480.07 (09/21/01)
38% 556.14
50% 579.65
62% 603.55

===

S&P 500 (SPX)
52-Week High:  1530.01
52-Week Low:    965.80
Current close: 1148.13

Volume / Open Interest
Maximum calls: 1150/38,118
Maximum puts : 1150/31,855
Moving Averages
 10 DMA 1147
 20 DMA 1144
 50 DMA 1127
200 DMA 1166

Fibanocci Retracements
Relative High: 1315.93 (05/22/01)
Relative Low:   944.75 (09/21/01)
38% 1086.75
50% 1130.62
62% 1175.23

==

DJIA (INDU)
52-Week High:  11,518.83
52-Week Low:    8,235.81
Current close: 10,021.64

Volume / Open Interest
Maximum Calls: 100/13,919
Maximum Puts   100/28,244

Moving Averages:
 10 DMA 10,039
 20 DMA  9,979
 50 DMA  9,749
200 DMA 10,091

Fibanocci Retracements
Relative High: 11,350.05 (05/22/01)
Relative Low    8,062.34 (05/21/01)
38%  9,308.92
50%  9,693.99
62% 10,085.60

==

Biotech Index (BTK)
52-Week High:  811.61
52-Week Low:   383.28
Current close: 580.71

Volume / Open Interest
Maximum Calls: 650/  231
Maximum Puts:  580/2,281

Moving Averages
 10 DMA 586
 20 DMA 585
 50 DMA 576
200 DMA 538

Fibanocci Retracements
Relative High: 811.61 (09/25/00)
Relative Low:  383.28 (03/22/01)
38% 546.22
50% 596.57
62% 646.71

==

Semiconductor Index (SOX)
52-Week High: 1280.84
52-Week Low:   362.00
Current close: 522.16

Volume / Open Interest
Maximum Calls: 440/1,201
Maximum Puts:  410/2,050

Moving Averages
 10 DMA 532
 20 DMA 545
 50 DMA 516
200 DMA 555

Fibanocci Retracements
Relative High: 710.78 (05/22/01)
Relative Low:  343.93 (09/27/01)
38% 484.50
50% 527.18
62% 570.57

==

Pharmaceutical Index (DRG)
52-Week High:  455.28
52-Week Low:   339.49
Current close: 381.24

Volume / Open Interest
Maximum Calls: 400/525
Maximum Puts:  360/505

Moving Averages
 10 DMA 383
 20 DMA 385
 50 DMA 391
200 DMA 390

Fibanocci Retracements
Relative High: 448.43 (12/29/00)
Relative Low:  339.49 (03/22/01)
38% 382.22
50% 395.69
62% 409.03

*****

CBOT Commitment Of Traders Report: Friday, 12/28. 
Weekly COT report discloses positions held by small specs
and commercial traders of index futures contracts on the 
Chicago Board Of Trade. 

Small specs are the general trading public with commercials being 
financial institutions. Commercials are historically on the 
correct side of future trend changes while small specs are not. 
Extreme divergence between each signals a possible market turn in 
favor of the commercial trader’s direction.   

S&P 500
Commercials   Long      Short      Net     %Change 
12/11/01     367,397   429,640   (62,243)    2.6%
12/18/01     391,995   456,968   (64,973)    4.3%
12/25/01     412,581   471,239   (58,658)   (9.7%)

Most bearish reading of the year: (111,956) - 3/6/01
Most bullish reading of the year: (41,144)  - 5/1/01

Small Traders   Long      Short      Net      %Change
12/11/01       158,490    86,717    71,773    (1.4%)
12/18/01       158,300    80,507    77,793     8.4%
12/05/01       152,521    79,444    73,077    (6.1%)

Most bearish reading of the year:  36,513 - 5/01/01
Most bullish reading of the year:  91,122 - 3/06/01

NASDAQ-100
Commercials   Long      Short      Net     %Change 
12/11/01      45,468    51,392    (5,924)  (35.9%)
12/18/01      55,276    58,433    (3,157)  (46.7%)
12/25/01      55,250    47,476     7,774   
Most bearish reading of the year: (15,521) - 3/13/01
Most bullish reading of the year:  (1,825) - 1/02/01

Small Traders  Long      Short      Net      %Change
12/11/01       12,425    11,754      671     (81.0%)
12/18/01       17,649    18,626     (977)   
12/25/01       15,810    25,687   (9,877)

Most bearish reading of the year:  (1,028) - 1/02/01
Most bullish reading of the year:   8,460  - 3/13/01

DOW JONES INDUSTRIAL
Commercials   Long      Short      Net     %Change 
12/11/01      23,135    12,576   10,559     (1.7%)
12/18/01      21,919    13,810    8,109    (23.2%)
12/25/01      15,492     7,335    8,157       .6%

Most bearish reading of the year: (8,322) - 1/16/01
Most bullish reading of the year:  8,925  - 5/22/01

Small Traders  Long      Short      Net      %Change
12/11/01       3,469     9,065    (5,596)     (8.6%)
12/18/01       6,790    10,943    (4,153)    (25.8%)
12/25/01       4,293     9,086    (4,793)     15.4%
 
Most bearish reading of the year:  (7,572) - 5/08/01
Most bullish reading of the year:   1,909  - 1/16/01


                    Small Specs               Commercials
S&P 500         (Current)  (Previous)     (Current) (Previous)
Open Interest
Net Value        +73,077     +77,793        -58,658     -64,973

Total Open
Interest %       (+31.50%)  (+32.58%)      (-6.64%)   (-7.65%)
                 net-long   net-long       net-short  net-short


                     Small Specs             Commercials
DJIA futures     (Current) (Previous)    (Current) (Previous)
Open Interest
Net Value          -4,793     -4,153          +8,157    8,109
Total Open
interest %       (-35.82%)    (-23.42%)      (+35.73%)  (+22.70)
                 net-short   net-short     net-long    net-long


                     Small Spec              Commercials
NASDAQ 100      (Current) (Previous)    (Current) (Previous)
Open Interest
Net Value         -9877      -977         +7,774    -3,157

Total Open
Interest %        (-23.80%)   (-2.69%)     (+7.49%) (-2.78%)
                 net-short   net-short      net-long net-short


What COT Data Tells Us
----------------------
Indices:.We’ve seen a major move by the Commercial players on the 
NASDAQ 100 this week. The Commercials have gone net-long while 
the Small Specs added to their net-shorts. This would seem to be 
a bullish move for the tech side however, we still see the 
Commercials holding their net-short positions on the SPX, the 
favored vehicle, and usually a better barometer of overall 
Commercial sentiment.

Gold: No significant changes this week.

11/27  1,738 contracts net-long
12/04  2,534 contracts net-short
12/11 13,626 contracts net-long
12/18 15,198 contracts net-short
12/25 11,976 contracts net-short

Data compiled as of Tuesday 12/25 by the CFTC.




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

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Littleton, CO 80163

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