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Long Play Updates

Burlington Coat - BCF - close: 38.80 chg: +0.55 stop: 36.45

The retailers rallied pretty nicely today and BCF added 1.4% but it remains under resistance at the $39.00 level. We remain bullish but more conservative traders may want to wait for a move over $39 before going long. Our target is the $43.50-44.00 range.

Picked on October 24 at $38.90
Change since picked: - 0.10
Earnings Date 10/06/05 (confirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 165 thousand


Crown Castle - CCI - close: 25.85 change: +0.04 stop: 24.24

CCI tried to rally higher today but by the end of the session it was lucky to hold its gains. If you're the optimistic type the fact that CCI held yesterday's unexplained but impressive gains could be seen as a good sign. However, we are leaning more toward the camp that CCI could pull back and we'd rather buy a bounce from $25.50 or even the $25.00 level. For more details please see Tuesday's play description. Our target is the $29.00 mark.

Picked on November 01 at $25.81
Change since picked: + 0.04
Earnings Date 10/26/05 (confirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 1.2 million


IPC Holdings - IPCR - close: 28.72 chg: +0.75 stop: 26.99

IPCR continued to rally today and broke out over short-term resistance at the $28.00 mark. Our trigger to go long the stock was $28.11 but IPCR gapped open at $28.15 so we are adjusting our entry price even though shares later dipped to $27.88. The 2.6% gain was fueled by volume still way above the norm. Readers can choose longs here over $28.00 or wait for a dip back to the $28 level. We feel that odds of a dip back to $28 are probably pretty good. Our target is the $29.95-30.00 range.

Picked on November 02 at $28.15
Change since picked: + 0.61
Earnings Date 10/25/05 (confirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 408 thousand


Outback Stkhse - OSI - close: 38.74 chg: +1.27 stop: 35.75

Wednesday proved to be a strong session for OSI. The stock added 3.3% on average volume to breakout over resistance at the $38.00 level and the 50-dma (38.49). Our target is the $39.90-40.00 range.

Picked on October 23 at $37.21
Change since picked: + 1.53
Earnings Date 10/20/05 (confirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 819 thousand


Patterson Companies - PDCO - close: 42.08 chg: +0.59 stop: 38.99

The market strength today also helped PDCO, which added 1.4% and broke out over resistance at the $42.00 mark and its simple 100-dma (41.70). Our target is the $44-45 range. We will plan to exit before the company announces earnings in late November.

Picked on October 30 at $40.85
Change since picked: + 1.22
Earnings Date 11/24/05 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 1.2 million

Short Play Updates

Mentor Graphics - MENT - close: 8.63 chg: +0.31 stop: 8.36

Gosh! We may have to switch directions and go long if MENT can breakout over resistance at the $9.00 mark. At this time we remain on the sidelines. MENT has been stuck in a trading range between $7.85 and $9.00 for months. Our trigger to short the stock is at $7.80. If triggered we'll target a decline to the $6.55 mark.

Picked on October xx at $xx.xx <-- see Trigger
Change since picked: + 0.00
Earnings Date 10/20/05 (confirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 713 thousand


Sanderson Farms - SAFM - close: 33.91 chg: -0.32 stop: 36.11

Lack of participation in today's market rally is a good sign for the bears. SAFM even sank back under the $34.00 mark. Our target is the $32.00-31.00 range.

Picked on October 23 at $35.17
Change since picked: - 1.26
Earnings Date 12/07/05 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 257 thousand


Sysco - SYY - close: 30.58 chg: -0.02 stop: 32.01

We are not surprised that SYY failed to confirm yesterday's breakdown with the broader market averages on the upswing. However, it is good news that SYY failed to truly participate in today's rally. It might be prudent to wait and watch for an oversold bounce back to the $31.00 level, which as broken support should become new resistance. A failed rally under $31 can be used as a new entry point. Our target is the $28.50-28.00 range.

Picked on November 01 at $30.60
Change since picked: + 0.02
Earnings Date 10/31/05 (confirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 2.4 million

Closed Long Plays

HR Block - HRB - close: 24.10 change: -0.64 stop: 23.49

It is usually a bad sign when the company's CEO says they may have to lower their earnings estimates. That's what happened today at an analyst conference. HRB's CEO said that rising interest rates could cut its profit margins on its mortgage lending business. The stock did bounce off its intraday lows near $23.66 but we're going to exit early right here!

Picked on October 23 at $24.09
Change since picked: + 0.01
Earnings Date 11/17/05 (confirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 2.1 million

Closed Short Plays

Elkcorp - ELK - close: 32.97 chg: +1.25 stop: 32.51

Shares of ELK struggled under resistance at the $32.20 level for most of the session until a late afternoon surge pushed the stock past our stop loss at 32.51. The move also pushed ELK above its simple 100-dma.

Picked on October 27 at $30.49
Change since picked: + 2.48
Earnings Date 10/21/05 (confirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 205 thousand

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