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Long Play Updates

Arkansas Best - ABFS - close: 43.41 chg: +0.02 stop: 40.75

ABFS have spent the last few days consolidating its February, 28th breakout over the top of its trading range. While in comparison the Dow Jones Transportation index has surpassed its December peak and closed at a new all-time, record high. We are not encouraged by this under performance in ABFS but we're not yet willing to call it quits. However, we will watch for a possible pull back toward the $42.00 level. A bounce near $42.00 could be used as a new bullish entry point. Our target remains the $46.00 region.


Picked on February 28 at $42.51
Gain since picked: + 0.90
Earnings Date 01/27/05 (confirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 259 thousand


Agilysys - AGYS - close: 19.83 chg: +0.26 stop: 18.49 *new*

Oh so close! Our target has been the $20.00-21.00 range. Shares of AGYS hit a high of $19.99 on Friday. We've been suggesting that readers consider taking some profits here and we continue to suggest the same here. The $20.00 level would normally be seen as round-number, psychological resistance. If shares do see some profit taking we'll look to the simple 10-dma near $19.00 to act as short-term support. Meanwhile we're raising our stop loss to $18.49.


Picked on February 16 at $18.39
Change since picked: + 1.44
Earnings Date 02/09/05 (confirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 197 thousand


Benchmark Electronic - BHE - cls: 32.57 chg: +0.06 stop: 31.49

We continue to wait for BHE to breakout over the $33.00 level. Given the trend of higher lows the breakout could happen soon. Our trigger to go long is at $33.51. Until then we'll sit on the sidelines.


Picked on February xx at $xx.xx <-- see TRIGGER
Gain since picked: + 0.00
Earnings Date 02/08/05 (confirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 453 thousand


Cox Radio - CXR - close: 16.64 chg: +0.10 stop: 15.39

CXR has not had much success producing any sort of follow through on its recent breakout over resistance at the $16.50 level and its 200-dma. Plus, we are a little disappointed that CXR did not participate with the Industrials rally on Friday. We are willing to stay long over $16.50 but more conservative traders may want to wait for CXR to trade over the $17.00 mark before initiating positions. Our target remains the $18.50 region in the next eight weeks.


Picked on March 01 at $16.53
Change since picked: + 0.11
Earnings Date 02/23/05 (confirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 334 thousand


First American - FAF - close: 36.47 chg: +0.32 stop: 35.29

FAF continues to consolidate near support at the $36.00 level and the bottom of its rising channel underpinned by its rising 50-dma. This looks like a bullish entry point but we suggest readers wait for signs of a bounce. A move over the $37.00 level would be a good spot to consider new positions. Our target remains 39.75-40.00.


Picked on February 27 at $36.63
Change since picked: - 0.16
Earnings Date 02/16/05 (confirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 444 thousand


Tesoro Corp - TSO - close: 37.39 chg: +0.39 stop: 34.00*new*

Oil stocks continue to rise and TSO is still inching higher. It looks like traders are buying dips to support near the rising 10-dma. We remain bullish and our target is the $39.50-40.00 range. Keep an eye on the OIX index, which is also rising with support at the 10-dma. We are going to raise our stop loss to $34.00.


Picked on February 22 at $35.15
Change since picked: + 2.24
Earnings Date 02/03/05 (confirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 1.0 million


Valassis Comm. - VCI - close: 37.72 chg: +0.74 stop: 34.75

VCI is still out performing the markets and added another two percent on Friday after Deutsche Bank started coverage on the stock with a "buy" rating. We're not suggesting new positions at this time but a bounce from the 37.00 level might suffice for a new entry point. We are going to adjust our target from $40.00 to $39.50-to-40.00.


Picked on February 23 at $36.12
Gain since picked: + 1.60
Earnings Date 02/22/05 (confirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 337 thousand


Waters Corp - WAT - close: 49.91 change: +0.63 stop: 47.75

It's about time. Shares of WAT added another 1.27 percent on Friday with volume coming in well above average. The stock looks ready to push back above the $50.00 level. On Thursday we suggested that more aggressive traders consider a move over $49.50 as a new bullish entry point. Well you got it. The rest of us can probably do just fine waiting for WAT to confirm the move and breakout over $50.00. The MACD indicator is very close to a new buy signal. We're going to adjust our target to the $54.50-55.00 range.


Picked on February 2 at $50.20
Gain since picked: - 0.29
Earnings Date 01/27/05 (confirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 643 thousand

Short Play Updates

Anheuser Busch - BUD - close: 47.95 chg: +0.55 stop: 50.11

We can't find what sparked the 70-cent rally in shares of BUD on Friday morning but the stock's strength began to fade before midday. The overall trend remains bearish and we're not going to worry about these minor spikes. This play is going to require patience considering the six-to-eight week time frame.


Picked on February 7 at $48.32
Gain since picked: - 0.37
Earnings Date 02/02/05 (confirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 2.4 million


Cisco Systems - CSCO - close: 18.04 chg: +0.24 stop: 18.26

Uh-oh! Bears need to be on the defensive here. CSCO is not only out performing the NWX networking index but it's out performing the NASDAQ as well - at least over the last few days. The breakout over the $18.00 level is not good news for shorts. CSCO's P&F chart remains very bearish but we're noticing that the RSI indicator on its daily chart has a bullish breakout. Right now we'll look for the simple 50-dma at $18.20 to act as resistance. We're not suggesting new bearish plays at this time.


Picked on February 20 at $17.30
Gain since picked: + 0.74
Earnings Date 01/27/05 (confirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 61.1 million


IAC/InterActiveCorp - IACI - close: 22.28 chg: -0.05 stop: 24.51

IACI continues to under perform the markets and there has been no follow through on Tuesday's acquisition-inspired rally. Instead the stock has found new resistance at its 21-dma. We would suggest new bearish positions at current levels but conservative types can wait for another drop under the $22.00 mark instead.


Picked on February 22 at $21.95
Change since picked: + 0.33
Earnings Date 02/16/05 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 4.4 million


NY Times - NYT - close: 36.60 chg: +0.36 stop: 38.61

NYT hit new three-year lows on Thursday but managed a bounce with the market's Friday rally. Watch for the simple 10-dma to act as overhead resistance. Our target remains the $33.50-32.50 range.


Picked on February 20 at $37.20
Gain since picked: - 0.60
Earnings Date 01/25/05 (confirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 516 thousand

Closed Long PLays

Broadcom Corp - BRCM - close: 31.31 chg: -0.63 stop: 31.99

The recent bout of news and analyst opinions in the semiconductor sector have suddenly gone from bullish to bearish or at least cautious. This has produced what looks like another failed rally in the SOX near its 200-week moving average. In response shares of BRCM lost another 1.97 percent on Friday and the stock is nearing technical support at its 100-dma. We have decided that it's time to drop BRCM from the play list since odds of it hitting our trigger to go long at $34.55 are dwindling.


Picked on February xx at $xx.xx <-- see TRIGGER
Gain since picked: + 0.00
Earnings Date 01/27/05 (confirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 9.2 million


Fairchild Semi - FCS - close: 16.68 chg: -0.06 stop: 15.99

We are going to abandon ship with FCS. There has been no follow through on the upgrade and rally from Tuesday and the sentiment in the semiconductor sector has suddenly soured. The SOX is pulling back and producing what appears to be another failed rally near its 200-week moving average. It doesn't help that FCS' MACD indicator is on the verge of a new sell signal. We're going to cut our losses here in FCS and move on.


Picked on March 01 at $17.37
Change since picked: - 0.69
Earnings Date 01/25/05 (confirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 1.5 million


Wheeling-Pittsburgh - WPSC - cls: 43.35 chg: +1.11 stop: 35.95

Target achieved! We can't find any news to account for the surge higher on Friday morning but we suspect it is related to the strength in the commodities index. WPSC traded to a high of $44.82, which is in the upper half of our target range of $44.00-45.00. We are closing the play at our target (44.00). Readers interested in following WPSC can watch for a pull back and bounce from the $40.00 level as a new bullish entry point.


Picked on February 20 at $40.07
Gain since picked: + 3.28
Earnings Date 03/14/05 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 122 thousand

Closed Short Plays

None today

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