PremierInvestor.net Newsletter Weekend Edition 03-14-2004 section 1 of 3 Copyright (c) 2004, All rights reserved. Redistribution in any form is strictly prohibited. The entire newsletter is best viewed in COURIER 10 for alignment ================================================================= In section one: Market Wrap: What a Week! Market Sentiment: Speed Bump or a Rebound? Watch List: ISLE, MRVL, ACLS, URBN ================================================================= MARKET WRAP (view in courier font for table alignment) ================================================================= WE 03-12 WE 03-05 WE 02-27 WE 02-20 DOW 10240.08 -355.47 10595.5 + 11.63 10583.9 - 35.11 - 8.82 Nasdaq 1984.73 - 62.90 2047.63 + 17.81 2029.82 - 8.11 - 15.63 S&P-100 549.92 - 18.53 568.45 + 3.91 564.54 - 0.33 - 1.05 S&P-500 1120.57 - 36.29 1156.86 + 11.91 1144.95 + 0.84 - 1.70 W5000 10968.18 -346.24 11314.4 +141.50 11172.9 + 29.34 - 30.42 SOX 485.10 - 19.15 504.25 + 1.99 502.26 - 7.99 - 0.80 RUT 582.84 - 16.70 599.54 + 13.98 585.56 + 5.67 - 5.25 TRAN 2863.09 - 29.98 2893.07 - 9.12 2902.19 + 10.01 - 24.38 VIX 18.30 + 3.82 14.48 - 0.09 14.57 - 1.47 + 0.46 VXO 18.72 + 3.92 14.80 + 0.04 14.76 - 1.49 + 0.62 VXN 25.30 + 3.22 22.08 - 0.79 22.87 - 1.25 - 0.02 TRIN 0.44 1.40 1.26 1.29 Put/Call 1.05 0.79 0.73 0.86 WE = week ending ================================================================= =========================== Market Wrap =========================== What a Week! by Jim Brown Last Sunday we were jubilant that the Dow managed to close up on Friday and right at 10600 after the disappointing Jobs report. This Sunday we are just thankful we did not break Dow 10000 again. Definitely not the kind of week we have seen in 2004. Actually it has been 19 months since we have seen a week this bad. Dow Chart - Daily Dow Chart - 5 min Nasdaq Chart - Daily The lack of any materially negative economic reports and the lack of any new terrorist news resulted in a strong rebound from grossly oversold conditions. We will need a couple more days of trading to find out if this was the end of the correction or just an oversold bounce but nobody was heard complaining on Friday. The economics we ignored included the Business Inventories that rose only +0.1% and less than estimates of +0.3%. This was widely expected to miss the estimates after the weak Wholesale Trade report. The inventory to sales ratio remained at record lows at 1.33 and it is only a matter of time before inventories have to be replenished. Growth in most components slowed with only Manufacturers posting a minor gain. Sales were still increasing only at a slower rate. Should inventory levels not pickup quickly the GDP for Q1 could see a sizeable drop. The Current Account balance increased due to strong income flows into the US during the 4Q. This was surprising and when taken as a percentage of GDP it has shows gains, a decrease in the outstanding liability, for three quarters. Both imports and exports improved during the quarter. No complaints here. The most surprising report was the Consumer Sentiment which was inline with estimates at 94.1 and only slightly off the February levels. Considering the falling sentiment/confidence levels for all of February a flat report showing a firming of sentiment was surprising. This may be the last positive sentiment report for several weeks. The polling was done for this before the Intel guidance, weak Jobs report, the terrorist attack in Spain and the stock market correction. Once consumers are polled after those events there could be a significant change. In Friday's report the present conditions component was 105.7 and up from 103.6 in February. This was probably a result of the strong market and the hype over strong jobs expectations two weeks ago. The expectations component fell to 86.6 from 88.5 which was probably related to the increased economy bashing in the presidential campaign. The constant reference to jobs being lost from outsourcing probably weighed on workers minds. As the quarter progresses tax refunds and bonuses should help offset some of the negatives. The rebound on Friday sent many traders home breathing easier. The Dow rebounded +111 points and the Nasdaq +41. Nice gains but if you looked at the header to this article you noticed some very bearish numbers for the week. The Dow lost -355 and the Nasdaq -63 and that is after the gains from Friday. Needless to say it was a very bad week but in reality it was just normal. I know it was painful to everyone who was long but we were due for a drop. It had been 19 months since we had seen a -5% correction and there was plenty of cash waiting on the sidelines for an entry point. I am going to review both the potential for a continued rebound and a continued drop today and some of the reasons the drop occurred. Despite our personal biases we always need to be aware of things happening in the market. First the market has a tendency to celebrate anniversaries of turning points with another turning point. It seems that prior painful memories tend to resurface in trader's subconscious minds. Actually even pleasant memories tend to haunt the markets. For instance, March 12th-2003 was the turning point in the markets and marked the low for all of 2003. We have literally moved almost straight up since that day. March 10th-2000 was the absolute high point for the Nasdaq at 5132. March-11th 2002 was also the high for all of 2002. I could stop there and rest my case for a potential market anniversary event in March of 2004 but it would have been pure speculation and posses no technical justification. To apply justification we add the historical fact based on research done by Ned Davis that cyclical bull markets tend to last about 12-15 months and tend to rebound about 50% from the bear market lows. This may or may not be a cyclical bull market but either way the tendency to correct at those levels even if only temporary remains the same. Obviously time frames are always vague depending on sentiment, earnings, interest rates, current events, etc. The most critical factor is the +50% gain off the lows. From the October low at 768 and the March low at 788 I was using the +50% target for my cautions of a January dip at 1175. A +50% gain from each low would have produced 1152-1182 as a target. I settled on 1175 which was the double top resistance high in March-2002. Notice how those March dates continue to appear? We reached 1155 in January. It took six weeks from the Jan-26th 1155 high to push only +8 points higher to the 1163 high on March-5th. In retrospect I missed the eventual high by 12 points. The extreme bullish sentiment in January simply refused to capitulate but that is not the focus of this commentary. The problem as I see it today is where are we in the grand scheme of things. Are we going back up or back down? SPX Chart - Weekly The argument for a rebound to the highs is based on earnings, interest rates and the current economic recovery. I heard again on Friday that First Call is now expecting earnings for the first quarter to be in the +15% to +17% range. Their current hard estimate is +14.9% and rising. This would tend to suggest stocks should continue to go up as long as earnings continue to climb. The Fed is on hold and mortgage interest rates are plunging to lows not seen since last year. This is good for home and auto sales and could bring another round of refinancing and that money eventually finds its way into the economy. Tax checks are starting to flow and the economy is continuing to recover, maybe. All I need to do is break into a rendition of "Happy days are here again" to solidify this warm fuzzy feeling. However, and you knew there was a however, we all know the market discounts future events 6-9 months out. Stock prices today are based on those expectations of Oct-Dec conditions. If we look into the future we see much stronger comparisons for earnings. Remember the blowout Q3 and Q4 in 2003? Unless this recovery catches fire and I mean roaring fire really quick the earnings comparisons for Q3 and Q4 for this year are going to start shrinking. Instead of +15% growth it could drop to single digits and that would really sour sentiment. We are also reaching the point where the dollar cannot continue to go down. Eventually the strong dollar will begin to reassert itself and that will hurt earnings. For instance over half of Oracle's growth in database sales for last qtr was from gains in currency translation. License revenue grew +13% and currency gains accounted for +7% of the total revenue and +8% of the new software growth. What will happen when the dollar begins to strengthen again? Weaker earnings for most multinational companies. We also have the already questionable recovery. Almost every economic report continues to show growth but the pace of growth continues to slow. This is troubling quite a few analysts. The lack of job creation is also a problem. I know it is a lagging indicator. I got the memo. But, even lagging indicators eventually have to confirm and jobs are the weakest of our current indicators. The current debate on outsourcing is bringing the problem more to the forefront than ever before. Are we in a growing recovery or has it already peaked? The massive explosion in the bond market over the last week and the drop in yields was far in excess of what should have been expected from the weak jobs report. There is a real undercurrent in the analyst community that suggests there are more problems in the system than anyone expected. There are moves underway to find the change in the current environment that is consuming jobs. The fear is that what worked before may not be working now and nobody knows why. The inordinate rise in bonds has spooked economists, politicians and stock and currency traders alike. Can you have too much of a good thing? Evidently you can if nobody knows why it is happening. The terrorist attack in Spain and the bogus claim of responsibility by the Al Qaeda cell may have had a serious impact on our already spooked markets but that has passed. The terror war may eventually return to our soil but the real war that will impact our markets is the political one. The battle will be waged on the airwaves and the outcome is far from clear. The surveys made public early last week may have had more impact on the markets than people realize. Projections that Bush had lost his commanding lead and was running a dead heat or possibly even behind Kerry threw institutions into a tizzy. The potential for a change in power and a repeal of the tax incentives caused a sudden rethinking of strategy. The previously unthinkable after Bush had soared to enormous satisfaction ratings had now become possible. Historically the fourth year of a presidential term is a positive year for the markets. The party in power uses every means at their disposal to remain in power. That includes tax cuts, social security increases, big jumps in spending including doling out pork projects like manna from heaven. Also, historically the first two years of a second term have spawned many of the worst bear markets on record. Specifically 1929, 1937, 1957, 1969, 1973, 1977 and 1981. You can't give away the candy store in an election year without paying for it eventually. Taxes get raised, budgets cut and all the unpopular work gets done. During a second term the president does not have to worry about getting himself reelected but tries to clean up conditions quickly so his party's successor has a chance of victory. So where does all this confusing and conflicting information leave us? Are we going back up or back down? Wouldn't we all like to know? Unfortunately there is no clear answer. The market "should" rebound into the April earnings cycle because the earnings growth is still expanding. It "should" begin to decline into the summer as the earnings comparisons become harder and the election mud slinging heats up. "Sell in May and go away" has been a market maxim since before I was born. This puts investors on the sideline during the summer doldrums and safe from any inadvertent market moving campaign comments. When politicians are running for office nothing is safe. Drug companies could be hit by controls. Energy companies, health care services, defense, no one is safe from attack if it will score more votes. The problem would be easier to solve if the recovery would simply catch fire. A roaring economy covers many sins. The deficit would slow, taxes would flow, employment would rise and workers would consume goods. Unfortunately the recovery is still missing in action on many fronts. We saw what $365B in tax rebates and the lowest mortgage rates in 45 years did for the economy in Q3-2003 but nobody expects any more miracles in 2004. I think all of this leaves us with a negative bias after April unless we get a major economic surprise. That means any rebound next week may only be temporary. According to the Stock Traders Almanac next week is bullish with a triple witching options expiration on Friday. That is great news because we need to rebuild trader confidence if we are going to have any April earnings run. Our mid quarter update cycle is nearly over and next week will begin the warning cycle. So far there have been very few early confessions and hopefully this trend will continue. Technically the Dow has resistance at 10300, 10450 and much stronger resistance at 10600. The 10600 level was the center of the recent trading range and it is highly doubtful we will exceed that level any time soon in our weakened condition. That means the Dow could be forced to define a new trading range with 10500-10600 on the upside and 10000 on the downside. Right now we are still oversold despite the +111 point gain and we are probably going to move higher next week. How high is a matter of debate. Where the Dow just suddenly fell out of its range the Nasdaq has been trending down since late January. This suggests a different type of problem. The Dow contains materials stocks, financials, consumer cyclicals, techs and manufacturing stocks. All solid blue chip companies and places where funds can park money in times of uncertainty. The Nasdaq has a different problem. In times of uncertainty traders tend to flee highly volatile tech stocks and move to safety. This is why the Nasdaq typically leads any drop and has deeper corrections. The percentage drop from the highs for the year on the Nasdaq is twice the Dow percentage and right at -10%. The Nasdaq has resistance at 2000, which is also the 100dma and again at 2030 to 2060. With the downtrend in progress since Jan-27th it is going to be tough to get back over 2050. That level was the price magnet for the two weeks prior to the current drop and is now strong resistance. The Nasdaq also has strong support at 1900 and heavy congestion between 1900 and 2000. This suggests the Nasdaq could also be locked into a new range from 1900-2050. I know this commentary probably angered some readers and bored others but it is the kind of fact summary that we all need to consider. I would like to think we will reach new highs before May and nothing would please me more. Unfortunately the current market environment is not suggesting that will happen. The drop this week was not unreasonable in its depth as all indexes dropped approx -3.5%. Just a normal correction and one that should be over. What shocked investors was the dramatic way it dropped. This also suggests that investors are worried. Instead of a calm decline the drop was sudden and sharp with signs of panic. For me the strongest indication of strength on Friday came from the Russell. The little index that thought it could roared back up the hill and posted a +14 point, +2.47% gain. This was a monstrous move when put into perspective. The Dow gained +1.10%, Wilshire +1.35% and Nasdaq +2.10%. The Russell was the motivating factor behind the Nasdaq gain. The closing Russell sprint added +5 points to the Nasdaq in the last 8 min of trading. The Russell was the ONLY index to not break its bullish uptrend support for the week. Russell-2000 Chart - Daily The rebound on Friday came on very strong internals with up volume 6:1 over down volume and advancers 5:2 over decliners. Traders would have been cheering at the close were it not for the very low volume of only 3.7B shares. This is not what builds investor confidence. The drop on Thursday was on very strong volume of over 5B shares and 4:1 down volume to up. Everything was in place for the rebound but that vital volume component. My theory is weekend related. With the renewed terror risk I feel investors were willing to wait until Monday to avoid weekend event risk. That makes Monday a critical day for the bulls. We must rally on strong volume and strong internals to rebuild confidence in the market. That may be a tall order for the Dow with resistance just overhead at 10300. It fought 10225 all day and was only able to break back above its 100dma at that level in the last ten minutes of trading as shorts covered into the close. The Nasdaq has about 20 points of free space before running into resistance at 2000 and only if it can open in positive territory and over resistance at 1980. We could win back a lot of traders with a blast out of the gate and a push back to 10350/2000 or higher on Monday. Conversely if we are unable to push higher then Friday will be seen as a simple oversold relief rally and the overhead pressure will begin to build again. The economic reports on Monday are neutral and should provide bullish confirmation with the Housing Index and Industrial Production. Marginally weak numbers should not be seen as negative to the market. The NY Empire State Manufacturing Survey has been on a steady uptrend and one of the few reports consistently gaining strength. The February number was a record high so any pullback will just be seen as a pause and any higher number is a new record. Not much risk there. Next week is going to be critical to the market for the rest of the quarter and the base for any April earnings run. We must have a couple of good days beginning with Monday or traders will begin rethinking their plans with many electing to take profits and leave early for the summer. Normal profit taking does not cause alarm but extreme uncertainty does. With our uncertainty quotient growing daily we need a booster shot of confidence to get us over the hump. The inoculations will begin at the bell on Monday. Enter Very Passively, Exit Very Aggressively! Jim Brown ================================================ Market Sentiment ================================================ Speed Bump or a Rebound? - J. Brown Ouch! After last week the bulls are probably thinking they need a vacation. After all they've been running for almost a year straight - granted they've grown a little tired the last few weeks. It was encouraging to see the markets do some heavy lifting on Friday but the volume numbers were a little disappointing. Sharp, brief sell-offs are common characteristics of a bull market correction and there are plenty of investors who have been waiting on the sidelines to jump in. The question now is whether or not the correction is over and Friday's rally is a new short-term bottom? Or is Friday just an oversold bounce in what could be a new change in the trend (think of it as a speed bump on the way down). Historically the week of triple-witching options expiration in March tends to be a bullish one. Considering the market's still oversold condition from last week's sell-off a continuation of the bounce is probably a good bet. Unfortunately, that bounce may be muted on Monday and Tuesday morning as we wait for the FOMC announcement at Tuesday's meeting. No one expects Alan & Co to move interest rates but if and how they change the wording of their statement will be major news for the next three sessions. Next week also brings a number of economic reports but potentially overshadowing them is the onset of the corporate confession cycle or earnings warning season. Yet this time we might actually see a bullish affect. We've already heard three or four corporations issue positive pre-announcements last week. It would be great to hear more positive upside guidance, which could jump start an early earnings run for the April reporting season. At least that's what my optimistic side is looking for. We will hear from a number of the broker-dealers this week who report earnings head of the crowd. Lehman Brothers, Bear Stearns and Morgan Stanley will all announce and odds are they'll crush expectations again. This should have a positive influence on investor sentiment. Speaking of investor sentiment we noticed some pretty big moves in the COT data (look below). Commercial traders or institutional traders have been slowly turning bullish on the NASDAQ 100 for weeks but this latest report hit extremes not seen since June 2002. This is good news because the commercial traders are normally right while the small trader tends to be wrong. Also noteworthy is the new bearish extremes in the Dow Jones futures by the small traders. Using the same logic this is a contrarian bullish indicator suggesting a bullish move for the Dow. Unfortunately, this COT report is from March 9th and before the last two sessions of the steep sell-off and before the Thursday terrorist bombings in Spain. I would certainly wait to see how these numbers change in next week's report before adding too much weight to them but they do add a little bit of encouragement for the bulls. ----------------------------------------------------------------- Market Averages DJIA ($INDU) 52-week High: 10753 52-week Low : 7416 Current : 10241 Moving Averages: (Simple) 10-dma: 10469 50-dma: 10547 200-dma: 9760 S&P 500 ($SPX) 52-week High: 1163 52-week Low : 760 Current : 1120 Moving Averages: (Simple) 10-dma: 1140 50-dma: 1137 200-dma: 1050 Nasdaq-100 ($NDX) 52-week High: 1559 52-week Low : 946 Current : 1431 Moving Averages: (Simple) 10-dma: 1451 50-dma: 1492 200-dma: 1372 ----------------------------------------------------------------- Volatility indices dropped strongly on Friday given the broad- based bounce but this week's market decline produced a surge in volatility that broke the previous multi-month trends. While I'd expect volatility to slowly drift lower it may not return toward its previous lows very soon. CBOE Market Volatility Index (VIX) = 18.30 -2.37 CBOE Mkt Volatility old VIX (VXO) = 18.72 -2.99 Nasdaq Volatility Index (VXN) = 25.30 -1.28 ----------------------------------------------------------------- Put/Call Ratio Call Volume Put Volume Total 1.05 758,249 795,143 Equity Only 0.82 563,698 463,767 OEX 1.31 54,825 71,831 QQQ 2.54 57,289 145,699 ----------------------------------------------------------------- Bullish Percent Data Current Change Status NYSE 73.5 + 0 Bull Confirmed NASDAQ-100 43.0 + 0 Bear Confirmed Dow Indust. 80.0 + 0 Bull Correction S&P 500 79.4 + 0 Bull Correction S&P 100 84.0 + 0 Bull Confirmed Bullish percent measures the number of stocks in an index currently trading on a buy signal on their point and figure chart. Readings above 70 are considered overbought, and readings below 30 are considered oversold. Bull Confirmed - Aggressively long Bull Alert - Cautiously long Bull Correction - Pause or pullback in upward trend Bear Alert - Take defensive action if long Bear Confirmed - High risk if long, good conditions for shorting Bear Correction - Pause or rebound in downtrend ----------------------------------------------------------------- 5-dma: 1.93 10-dma: 1.49 21-dma: 1.29 55-dma: 1.08 Extreme readings above 1.5 are bullish, and readings below .85 are bearish. These signals don't occur often and tend be early, but when they do, they can signal significant market turning points. ----------------------------------------------------------------- Market Internals -NYSE- -NASDAQ- Advancers 2114 2327 Decliners 732 736 New Highs 83 74 New Lows 17 14 Up Volume 1454M 1376M Down Vol. 207M 287M Total Vol. 1679M 1680M M = millions ----------------------------------------------------------------- Commitments Of Traders Report: 03/09/04 Weekly COT report discloses positions held by small specs and commercial traders of index futures contracts at the Chicago Mercantile Exchange and Chicago Board of Trade. COT data can be found at www.cftc.gov. 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 tend to be wrong. S&P 500 Commercial traders are committing new money to both long and short positions but they are turning more and more bearish in the large S&P contracts. Small traders are holding relatively steady. Commercials Long Short Net % Of OI 02/17/04 416,148 415,278 870 0.0% 02/24/04 417,490 416,502 988 0.0% 03/02/04 411,932 418,936 (7,004) (0.1%) 03/09/04 418,394 433,237 (14,843) (1.7%) Most bearish reading of the year: (111,956) - 3/06/02 Most bullish reading of the year: 23,977 - 12/09/03 Small Traders Long Short Net % of OI 02/17/04 141,533 84,227 57,306 25.3% 02/24/04 141,559 85,171 56,388 24.9% 03/02/04 148,383 84,135 64,248 27.6% 03/09/04 155,947 88,317 67,630 27.7% Most bearish reading of the year: (1,657)- 5/27/03 Most bullish reading of the year: 114,510 - 3/26/02 E-MINI S&P 500 Wow! We really saw some money come into the e-mini's this week. Commercial traders added nearly 90K new long contracts and more than 90K new short contracts. They remain net bearish on the S&P. Small traders also added more to their positions but remain net bullish. Commercials Long Short Net % Of OI 02/17/04 296,313 371,703 (75,390) (11.3%) 02/24/04 320,425 387,255 (66,830) ( 9.4%) 03/02/04 344,805 395,112 (50,307) ( 6.8%) 03/09/04 431,623 485,268 (53,645) ( 5.9%) Most bearish reading of the year: (354,835) - 06/17/03 Most bullish reading of the year: 133,299 - 09/02/03 Small Traders Long Short Net % of OI 02/17/04 144,014 64,391 79,623 38.2% 02/24/04 129,894 63,524 66,370 34.3% 03/02/04 119,382 67,453 51,929 27.8% 03/09/04 135,233 76,558 58,675 27.7% Most bearish reading of the year: (77,385) - 09/02/03 Most bullish reading of the year: 449,310 - 06/10/03 NASDAQ-100 Commercial traders have slowly been turning more and more bullish on the NASDAQ 100 over the last few weeks. As of March 9th, they hit new extremes surpassing they're last bullish peak dating back to June 11th, 2002. Unfortunately, this reading is before the steep Wednesday-Thursday sell-off this week and before the Thursday morning terror attack in Spain. We'll have to wait until next week to see how commercial traders, or "smart money", reacts to the last few sessions. Small traders have also turned more bullish but they're not hitting extreme readings. Commercials Long Short Net % of OI 02/17/04 46,104 40,385 5,719 6.6% 02/24/04 47,266 40,452 6,814 7.8% 03/02/04 49,959 41,059 8,900 9.8% 03/09/04 57,368 46,082 11,286 10.9% Most bearish reading of the year: (21,858) - 08/26/03 Most bullish reading of the year: 11,286 - 03/12/04 Small Traders Long Short Net % of OI 02/17/04 9,630 12,338 (2,708) (12.3%) 02/24/04 12,388 7,310 5,078 25.8% 03/02/04 11,605 7,128 4,477 23.9% 03/09/04 15,533 8,070 7,463 31.6% Most bearish reading of the year: (10,769) - 06/11/02 Most bullish reading of the year: 19,088 - 01/21/02 DOW JONES INDUSTRIAL Commercial traders or institutions have been slowly growing more and more bullish on the Dow over the last few weeks. Again, this latest data is before the Wednesday-Thursday sell-off and the Thursday terror event but it is encouraging. In contrast small traders have turned more bearish and actually hit a new extreme in their bearishness, surpassing last December's readings. This is a contrarian bullish indicator since small traders tend to be wrong. Yet I would hesitate to draw too many conclusions until we see next week's data and investor reaction to the terrorist attacks. Commercials Long Short Net % of OI 02/17/04 24,451 12,907 11,544 30.9% 02/24/04 27,176 13,918 13,258 32.3% 03/02/04 27,594 14,166 13,428 32.2% 03/09/04 26,867 12,845 14,022 35.3% Most bearish reading of the year: (8,322) - 1/16/01 Most bullish reading of the year: 15,135 - 10/16/01 Small Traders Long Short Net % of OI 02/17/04 6,768 15,623 (8,855) (39.5%) 02/24/04 6,509 14,919 (8,410) (39.2%) 03/02/04 6,898 15,874 (8,976) (39.4%) 03/09/04 7,053 19,159 (12,106) (46.2%) Most bearish reading of the year: (12,106) - 3/09/04 Most bullish reading of the year: 8,523 - 8/26/03 ----------------------------------------------------------------- ================================================================== 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. STOCKS WORTH WATCHING --------------------------------- Isle of Capris Casinos - ISLE - close: 24.27 change: +1.27 WHAT TO WATCH: Normally we're pretty hesitant to chase a one-day move of more than 5% but the gambling stocks have been exceptionally strong in this market. The recent consolidation in ISLE looks like a potential bull flag pattern. We'd consider new positions with the close over $24.00 but more conservative traders looking for a little more confirmation can wait or a move to a new high at $24.45. Check out its P&F chart. ISLE just produced a fresh triple-top breakout buy signal. --- Marvell Technologies - MRVL - close: 41.83 change: +1.65 WHAT TO WATCH: If you have any faith in the chip rebound late this week check out shares of MRVL. This semiconductor stock has demonstrated a lot more relative strength than many of its peers. The pull back to the $40 level of support, bolstered by the 200- dma, looks like an entry point. We would target a move back toward the upper end of its range near $46.00. --- Axcelis Technologies - ACLS - close: 10.39 change: +0.50 WHAT TO WATCH: ACLS is another semiconductor that is bouncing from its technical support at the simple 200-dma as well as horizontal price support near $9.50. Its short-term technicals like the RSI and stochastic oscillators look pretty tempting. Meanwhile stock has pulled back to support on its P&F chart as well. Even if this is a trend change in ACLS the rebound could still take it back toward the $12.00 level. --- Urban Outfitters - URBN - close: 45.80 change: +2.34 WHAT TO WATCH: Did you see a market correction this week? Investors in URBN certainly didn't. The stock hardly moved at all in anticipation of its Thursday earnings report. The company beat estimate by 2 cents on revenues that rose almost 50% over the same period a year ago. The stock broke out above resistance at $45.00 on Friday, which happens to be a new all-time high. This could be a candidate for a quick run to $50.00. ================================================================= To stop receiving this PremierInvestor.net Newsletter, send email to Contact Support ================================================================= DISCLAIMER ================================================================= This newsletter is a publication dedicated to the education of stock traders. The newsletter is an information service only. The information provided herein is not to be construed as an offer to buy or sell securities of any kind. The newsletter picks are not to be considered a recommendation of any stock but an information resource to aid the investor in making an informed decision regarding trading in stocks. It is possible at this or some subsequent date, the editors and staff of PremierInvestor.net may own, buy or sell securities presented. All investors should consult a qualified professional before trading in any security. 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PremierInvestor.net Newsletter Weekend Edition 03-14-2004 section 2 of 3 Copyright (c) 2004, All rights reserved. Redistribution in any form is strictly prohibited. The entire newsletter is best viewed in COURIER 10 for alignment ================================================================= In section two: Tech Stocks Bearish Play Updates: CCMP, NVLS, VRTS Active Trader (Non-tech) New Bullish Plays: R Bullish Play Updates: SPF, TYC Bearish Play Updates: BBY High Risk/Reward New Bearish Plays: HGSI Stock Splits Announcements: ================================================================== Net Bulls (NB) Tech Stock section ================================================================== ============ PLAY UPDATES ============ -------------------- Bearish Play Updates -------------------- Cabot Microelec. - CCMP - close: 42.24 change: +1.74 stop: 44.00 After a painful week of losses, the Semiconductor index (SOX.X) finally found its footing and put in a respectable rebound from critical support at $475. Even laggard CCMP managed to participate in the rebound, and owing to its more oversold condition tacked on more than 4% on Friday on solid volume. As noted when we began coverage on Wednesday, CCMP was overdue for an oversold rebound and odds were good we'd get it soon after the breakdown under the $42 support level. Friday's recovery brought the stock right back into the $42-43 area, which should now serve as resistance. That's why we listed a failed rebound in that area as our preferred entry strategy and now we'll want to watch for the rollover early next week to pull the trigger. The risk is that with daily Stochastics trying to turn up from oversold territory, CCMP could rebound to the top of its range without producing the rollover we're looking for. Our stop at $44 is above all the short-term moving averages, and if hit will tell us unequivocally that last week's breakdown was nothing more than a bear trap. More conservative traders may want to now wait for a breakdown under last week's lows before entering the play. Watch for direction from the SOX, which should now find stiff resistance in the $495-500 area. Picked on March 10th at $40.85 Change since picked +1.39 Earnings Date 1/22/04 (confirmed) Average Daily Volume = 818 K --- Novellus Systems - NVLS - close: 31.01 change: +0.85 stop: 34.00 After a rough week, the bulls were confronted with the absolute necessity of producing a bounce in the Semiconductor index (SOX.X) on Friday, as it began the day resting on key support at $475. They didn't miss the opportunity and the SOX gained better than 2% on the day, taking the index off of that critical support level. Our NVLS play has really been rather disappointing, as the weakness in the SOX was unable to deliver the desired breakdown below the $30 level. The stock tested that level on Thursday, but when it held, we had a good indication that the week would end with a bounce. The short-term declining trend is still intact, so our attention now turns to looking for a failed rally below $32 resistance (right at the 20-dma) as the next solid entry into the play. More conservative traders will want to wait for the $30 level to fail as support before playing. We're maintaining our stop at $34, which is just over the last relative high. Picked on March 3rd at $31.15 Change since picked -0.14 Earnings Date 1/26/04 (confirmed) Average Daily Volume = 6.57 mln --- Veritas Software -VRTS - close: 31.01 change: +1.03 stop: 32.50 The action in VRTS last week was quite disappointing, with the stock clinging to support at $30 and not even able to challenge the intraday low from the prior week. Friday's 3.4% bounce leaves us with the distinct possibility that the stock is in the process of building a bottom near $30 and if so, we'll have a failed play on our hands. Failed bounces below the 20-dma ($31.33) have been good for bearish entries in recent weeks, and that's still where we'd suggest aggressive traders step into the play. But with the potential for a stronger bounce, the more prudent approach would appear to be to wait for a breakdown under the early March low of $29.43 before playing. Once that breakdown occurs, look for next support near $27. We're maintaining our stop at $32.50, just over the top of the trading range since late February. Picked on February 29th at $30.55 Change since picked +0.46 Earnings Date 1/28/04 (confirmed) Average Daily Volume = 6.07 mln ================================================================== Stock Bottom / Active Trader (AT) section ================================================================== ========= NEW PLAYS ========= ----------------- New Bullish Plays ----------------- Ryder Systems - R - close: 37.78 change: +0.93 stop: 36.49 Company Description: Ryder is a Fortune 500 company providing leading-edge transportation, logistics and supply chain management solutions worldwide. Ryder's stock is a component of the Dow Jones Transportation Average and the Standard & Poor's 500 Index. (source: company press release) Why We Like It: The Dow Jones Transport index has been a major culprit in the market's weakness over the last several weeks. Yet when the group bounced strongly on Friday we started looking for a rebound candidate. Fortunately, we didn't have to look far because we've had our eye on Ryder (R) for a while now. The stock has been consolidating under resistance at the $38.00 level for weeks and it looks ready to breakout. Doing a little digging we noticed that R's last earnings report was a blowout, beating estimates by 8 cents with net income for the December quarter hitting 64 cents a share on revenues above consensus estimates. At that February 5th report the company raised its Q1 earnings guidance to 36-39 cents a share, above the average estimate of 36 cents. A month later R raised estimates again after completing its acquisition of privately held Ruan Leasing Company for $145 million. The deal is expected to add $125 million in revenue to 2004. Ryder raised its earnings guidance for the year from $2.46-2.56 to $2.52-2.64 per share. Technically Ryder's short-term oscillators like the RSI and stochastics are bullish. Its MACD is bullish too but the recent weakness last week flatten it out a bit. Ryder's P&F chart points to a $42 price target and we think that's a good initial target. However, we're not going to open the play until Ryder trades through our TRIGGER of $38.05. Once we're triggered we'll use a stop loss at $36.49. Annotated Chart: Picked on March 14 at $xx.xx <-- see Trigger Gain since picked: + 0.00 Earnings Date 02/05/04 (confirmed) Average Daily Volume: 441 thousand ============ PLAY UPDATES ============ -------------------- Bullish Play Updates -------------------- Standard Pacific - SPF - cls: 56.60 chg: +1.37 stop: 54.00 Did you take it? In our last update we suggested that the next entry point for bullish positions was a dip to the $55 level. SPF almost traded to $54.50 on Thursday before rebounding. The homebuilding sector has weathered the recent market downturn very well. Many stocks in the group were only allowed to pull back to minor support before traders jumped in to buy the dip. Considering the low interest/mortgage rates this should be a strong home buying season and investors are eager to own these stocks. We are still targeting a move to $59.50 and plan to exit there on an intraday basis. Our stop loss remains at $54.00. Annotated Chart: Picked on February 29 at $52.31 Gain since picked: + 4.29 Earnings Date 02/04/04 (confirmed) Average Daily Volume: 468 thousand --- Tyco International - TYC - close: 28.50 change: +0.67 stop: 27.25 With TYC coming to rest up against the top of its rising channel a week ago, we were looking for a pullback to provide for fresh entries and last week's broad market weakness was the perfect catalyst to deliver it. The stock fell throughout the week, bottoming on Thursday at $27.69, ending just below both the 50- dma ($28.07) and the midline of the rising channel. The bulls stepped into the breech on Friday though, pushing TYC back over those dual measures of support and with the daily Stochastics hinting at a bullish reversal, it looks like that dip provided the entry we were looking for. Traders looking for more strength before playing will want to wait for a rally back through the 20- dma ($28.74) before entering. Despite the slight violation late last week, TYC continues to observe the top half of the ascending channel as support and resistance and should continue to do so. Look for this next rally leg to carry price up towards the top of the channel, now at $30.50. When that level is reached, harvesting gains is the prudent course of action, in preparation for repeating the process on the next pullback to the middle of the channel. Picked on February 29th at $28.57 Change since picked -0.07 Earnings Date 2/03/04 (confirmed) Average Daily Volume = 9.03 mln -------------------- Bearish Play Updates -------------------- Best Buy Company - BBY - close: 49.30 change: +2.05 stop: 52.75 Everything was looking good for the BBY bears on Thursday, as the stock had clearly broken key support at $48 and had done so on volume well above the ADV. But Friday's more than 4% bounce calls into question whether the breakdown was the real deal or if it was a bear trap. While not as strong as on the breakdown earlier in the week, Friday's rebound did come on strong volume, adding to our hesitation. When we initiated coverage on BBY, we stated our expectation that the optimal entry would come on a failed bounce after our $48 trigger was activated. That trigger was hit on Thursday's drop to the $47.25 level and now the best odds for new entries will come on a rollover in the vicinity of the 200-dma ($50.50). Resistance should now be strong at former support in the $51 area, reinforced by the confluence of moving averages just over $52. Traders that would prefer to enter on weakness will need to see price break Thursday's $47.25 low before entering. Maintain stops at $52.75. Picked on March 10th at $48.50 Change since picked +0.80 Earnings Date 1/31/04 (confirmed) Average Daily Volume = 3.81 mln ================================================================== HIGH RISK/HIGH REWARD (HR) section ================================================================== ========= NEW PLAYS ========= ----------------- New Bearish Plays ----------------- Human Genome Sciences - HGSI - cls: 12.34 chng: +0.04 stop: 13.50 Company Description: Possessing one of the largest human and microbial genetic databases, HGSI licenses its database of knowledge to pharmaceutical heavyweights like GlaxoSmithKline and Merck. Management has chosen to forgo the race to decode the entire human genome, and has instead focused on finding and patenting genes involved in developing gene-based therapeutics. Its four compounds currently in clinical trials are intended to limit the toxic effects of chemotherapy, promote the repair of damaged cells, stimulate antibody production, and spur regrowth of blood vessels. Why we like it: Just like the rest of the market, HGSI made a stellar bullish move from March through early June of last year. But that's where the similarity to the rest of the market ends. Since then, the stock has been building a very bearish price pattern, with a series of lower highs and horizontal support near $12. Showing the weakening of the trend, the stock hasn't been able to approach the descending trendline connecting the June, September and January highs for nearly 2 months and heavy selling volume all last week suggests that a major breakdown is brewing. The PnF chart has been bearish since last November, and is still showing a bearish price target of $7. That certainly gives us enough downside to work with, but we're not going to be so aggressive as to expect that level to be reached over the near term. There's another factor in favor of the bears, as the stock appears to be building a complex Head & Shoulders top formation, with the neckline just barely above the $12 support level. With the head just below $15 and the neckline at $12, that gives us a downside target of $12-3 or $9. Looking at the chart, we can see that level corresponds to pretty strong support too, so that will be our target for the play. While there's the potential for some mild support to be found near the November lows at $11.50, the first real support should be seen near $10 and that can be used as a more conservative exit target. We're going to use an entry trigger at $12 to make sure we get a confirmed breakdown from the H&S pattern before playing. Aggressive entries can be taken on the initial breakdown, while those with a more conservative approach will want to target a subsequent failed rally attempt in the $12.50-12.75 area. Place stops initially at $13.50, which is just over the 50-dma ($13.35). Annotated Chart of HGSI: Picked on March 14th at $12.34 Change since picked +0.00 Earnings Date N/A Average Daily Volume = 1.40 mln ================================================================== Stock Splits ================================================================== Announcements ------------- ================================================================= To stop receiving this PremierInvestor.net Newsletter, send email to Contact Support ================================================================= DISCLAIMER ================================================================= This newsletter is a publication dedicated to the education of stock traders. The newsletter is an information service only. The information provided herein is not to be construed as an offer to buy or sell securities of any kind. The newsletter picks are not to be considered a recommendation of any stock but an information resource to aid the investor in making an informed decision regarding trading in stocks. It is possible at this or some subsequent date, the editors and staff of PremierInvestor.net may own, buy or sell securities presented. All investors should consult a qualified professional before trading in any security. The information provided has been obtained from sources deemed reliable but is not guaranteed as to accuracy or completeness. PremierInvestor.net staff makes every effort to provide timely information to its subscribers but cannot guarantee specific delivery times due to factors beyond our control. Please read our disclaimer at: http://www.optioninvestor.com/page/oin/aboutus/disclaimer.html ***************************************************************** ADVERTISING INFORMATION For more information on advertising in PremierInvestor.net Newsletter, or any Premier Investor Network newsletter please contact Contact Support. ***************************************************************** Copyright (c) 2001-2004 PremierInvestor.net. and The Premier Investor Network. Do not duplicate or redistribute in any form.
PremierInvestor.net Newsletter Weekend Edition 03-14-2004 section 3 of 3 Copyright (c) 2004, All rights reserved. Redistribution in any form is strictly prohibited. The entire newsletter is best viewed in COURIER 10 for alignment ================================================================= In section three: Market Watch for Week of March 14, 2004 - Major Earnings - Stock Splits - Economic Reports Trading Ideas Value Plays With Bullish Signals Breakout to Upside (Stocks $5 to $20) Breakout to Upside (Stocks over $20) Breakout to Downside (Stocks over $20) Recently Overbought With Bearish Signals (Stocks over $20) ================================================================= ========================================== Market Watch for the week of March 14th ========================================== ----------------- Earnings Calendar ----------------- Symbol Co Date Comment EPS Est ------------------------- MONDAY ------------------------------- BTH Blyth Inc. Mon, Mar 15 Before the Bell 0.75 CTAS Cintas Corporation Mon, Mar 15 After the Bell 0.39 DG Dollar General Corp. Mon, Mar 15 -----N/A----- 0.34 IMCL ImClone Systems Inc Mon, Mar 15 -----N/A----- -0.32 L Liberty Media Group Mon, Mar 15 -----N/A----- 0.05 SRV Service Corp Intl Mon, Mar 15 Before the Bell 0.06 THC Tenet Healthcare Mon, Mar 15 After the Bell 0.02 UCOMA UnitedGlobalCom, Inc. Mon, Mar 15 Before the Bell -0.02 URS URS Corp. Mon, Mar 15 After the Bell 0.23 ------------------------- TUESDAY ------------------------------ ANPI Angiotech Pharm Tue, Mar 16 After the Bell -0.05 CLL Celltech Group PLC Tue, Mar 16 02:00 am ET N/A FDS FactSet Research Sys Tue, Mar 16 -----N/A----- 0.41 GIS General Mills, Inc. Tue, Mar 16 Before the Bell 0.66 KBH KB Home Tue, Mar 16 After the Bell 1.60 LEH LEHMAN BROS HLDGS INC Tue, Mar 16 -----N/A----- 1.64 LEN Lennar Corporation Tue, Mar 16 After the Bell 0.83 ROST Ross Stores, Inc. Tue, Mar 16 08:00 am ET 0.48 SCHL Scholastic Tue, Mar 16 After the Bell 0.01 ------------------------ WEDNESDAY ----------------------------- BF BASF Wed, Mar 17 01:30 am ET N/A BSC Bear Stearns Wed, Mar 17 Before the Bell 2.00 BMET Biomet, Inc. Wed, Mar 17 Before the Bell 0.33 DRI Darden Restaurants Wed, Mar 17 After the Bell 0.45 ERJ Embraer-Empresa Bras Wed, Mar 17 After the Bell 0.34 FDX FedEx Wed, Mar 17 Before the Bell 0.67 GPN Global Payments Inc. Wed, Mar 17 After the Bell 0.40 MLHR Herman Miller Wed, Mar 17 After the Bell 0.11 JBL Jabil Wed, Mar 17 After the Bell 0.22 SQM Sociedad Quimica Wed, Mar 17 Before the Bell N/A TIBX TIBCO Software Wed, Mar 17 After the Bell 0.03 V Vivendi Universal Wed, Mar 17 -----N/A----- N/A WOR Worthington Ind Wed, Mar 17 Before the Bell 0.16 ------------------------- THUSDAY ----------------------------- COMS 3Com Corp Thu, Mar 18 After the Bell -0.13 ADBE Adobe Systems Thu, Mar 18 After the Bell 0.40 AAA Altana AG Thu, Mar 18 -----N/A----- N/A BKS Barnes&Noble Thu, Mar 18 Before the Bell 1.65 BAY Bayer Thu, Mar 18 Before the Bell N/A CGA Corus Group plc Thu, Mar 18 Before the Bell N/A ERF Enerplus Res Fund Thu, Mar 18 -----N/A----- N/A KMRT Kmart Thu, Mar 18 -----N/A----- N/A NKE Nike Thu, Mar 18 After the Bell 0.69 PFP Prem Farnell Plc (ADR)Thu, Mar 18 Before the Bell N/A SLR Solectron Thu, Mar 18 After the Bell -0.02 TEK Tektronix Inc. Thu, Mar 18 After the Bell 0.25 WSM Williams-Sonoma Thu, Mar 18 Before the Bell 0.84 WGO Winnebago Thu, Mar 18 Before the Bell 0.46 ------------------------- FRIDAY ------------------------------- CLC CLARCOR Inc. Fri, Mar 19 -----N/A----- 0.45 PAYX Paychex Fri, Mar 19 Before the Bell 0.21 ---------------------------------------------- Upcoming Stock Splits In The Next Two Weeks... ---------------------------------------------- Symbol Co Name Ratio Payable Executable CTX Centex Corporation 2:1 Mar 12th Mar 15th BRL Barr Pharmaceuticals 3:2 Mar 15th Mar 16th ATVI Activision, Inc 3:2 Mar 15th Mar 16th CEC CEC Entertainment Inc 3:2 Mar 15th Mar 16th CLZR Candela Corp 2:1 Mar 16th Mar 17th DCOM Dime 3:2 Mar 16th Mar 17th GWR Genesee & Wyoming Inc 3:2 Mar 18th Mar 19th XTO XTO Energy Inc 5:4 Mar 18th Mar 19th HBHC Hancock 2:1 Mar 18th Mar 19th DCI Donaldson Company, Inc 2:1 Mar 19th Mar 22nd NIHD NII Holdings, Inc 3:1 Mar 22nd Mar 23rd ASFI Asta Funding Inc 2:1 Mar 23rd Mar 24th COCO Corinthian Colleges Inc 2:1 Mar 23rd Mar 24th RJF Raymond James Financial 3:2 Mar 24th Mar 25th AMSG AmSurg Corp 3:2 Mar 24th Mar 25th SCHN Schnitzer Steel Ind, Inc 3:2 Mar 25th Mar 26th WGA Wells-Gardner Elect Corp 21:20 Mar 26th Mar 29th HOV Hovnanian Ent, Inc 2:1 Mar 26th Mar 29th MVL Marvel Enterprises 3:2 Mar 26th Mar 29th -------------------------- Economic Reports This Week -------------------------- Wall Street's main focus this week will be Tuesday's FOMC meeting but the week is riddled with economic reports that could move the market in absence of any major headlines. Earnings warning season is almost upon us. ============================================================== -For- ---------------- Monday, 03/15/04 ---------------- NY Empire State Index(BB) Mar Forecast: 38.9 Previous: 42.05 Industrial Production(DM) Feb Forecast: 0.4% Previous: 0.8% Capacity Utilization (DM) Feb Forecast: 76.4% Previous: 76.2% ----------------- Tuesday, 03/16/04 ----------------- Housing Starts (BB) Feb Forecast: 1930K Previous: 1903K Building Permits (BB) Feb Forecast: 1903K Previous: 1920K FOMC Meeting ------------------- Wednesday, 03/17/04 ------------------- CPI (BB) Feb Forecast: 0.3% Previous: 0.5% Core CPI (BB) Feb Forecast: 0.1% Previous: 0.2% Greenspan speaks to banking community. ------------------ Thursday, 03/18/04 ------------------ Initial Claims (BB) 03/13 Forecast: N/A Previous: 341K Leading Indicators (DM) Feb Forecast: 0.1% Previous: 0.5% Philadelphia Fed (DM) Mar Forecast: 29.5 Previous: 31.4 SEMI Book-to-Bill report ---------------- Friday, 03/19/04 ---------------- Wall Street is looking for both the January and February PPI reports to be released soon. Both have been delayed and they are tentatively on the schedule for this Friday. Definitions: DM= During the Market BB= Before the Bell AB= After the Bell NA= Not Available ====================================================== Trading Ideas ====================================================== This section contains stocks that meet criteria which may make them of interest to long and short side traders. These are not recommendations, nor have they been reviewed by PremierInvestor editors for investment potential. However, each of them has technical and fundamental characteristics that make them worthy of further review by traders and investors looking for fresh ideas. New stocks will appear daily following the market close. Value Plays With Bullish Signals --------------------------------- Ticker Company Name Close Change XOM Exxon Mobil Corporation 42.03 +0.68 C Citigroup 49.31 +0.69 CHL China Mobile Ltd 16.21 +0.51 BAC Bank of America Corp 80.32 +0.77 MER Merrill Lynch & Co 62.23 +1.13 PTR Petrochina Co Ltd (ADS) 51.80 +2.03 --------------------------------------- Breakout to Upside (Stocks $5 to $20) --------------------------------------- None --------------------------------------- Breakout to Upside (Stocks over $20) --------------------------------------- AVE Aventis 79.51 +3.26 SNY Sanofi-synthelabo (ADS) 35.39 +1.45 LXK Lexmark International 85.77 +3.92 AET Aetna Inc New 84.42 +4.77 CBH Commerce Bancorp Inc NJ 64.49 +1.09 ------------------------------------------- Breakout to Downside (Stocks over $20) ------------------------------------------- MO Altria Group Inc 54.31 -2.01 FRX Forest Laboratories Inc 70.84 -1.96 MBI MBIA Inc 63.68 -1.15 ----------------------------------------- Recently Overbought With Bearish Signals (Stocks over $20) ------------------------------------------- None ================================================================= To stop receiving this PremierInvestor.net Newsletter, send email to Contact Support ================================================================= DISCLAIMER ================================================================= This newsletter is a publication dedicated to the education of stock traders. The newsletter is an information service only. The information provided herein is not to be construed as an offer to buy or sell securities of any kind. The newsletter picks are not to be considered a recommendation of any stock but an information resource to aid the investor in making an informed decision regarding trading in stocks. It is possible at this or some subsequent date, the editors and staff of PremierInvestor.net may own, buy or sell securities presented. All investors should consult a qualified professional before trading in any security. The information provided has been obtained from sources deemed reliable but is not guaranteed as to accuracy or completeness. PremierInvestor.net staff makes every effort to provide timely information to its subscribers but cannot guarantee specific delivery times due to factors beyond our control. Please read our disclaimer at: http://www.optioninvestor.com/page/oin/aboutus/disclaimer.html ***************************************************************** ADVERTISING INFORMATION For more information on advertising in PremierInvestor.net Newsletter, or any Premier Investor Network newsletter please contact Contact Support. ***************************************************************** Copyright (c) 2001-2004 PremierInvestor.net. and The Premier Investor Network. Do not duplicate or redistribute in any form.
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