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Long Play Updates

Acuity Brands - AYI - cls: 47.10 chg: +1.76 stop: 43.49

Market strength today gave AYI a boost and shares added 3.88%. Unfortunately, volume continues to come in very low, which is a warning sign for the bulls. The stock is now challenging resistance near $47.50, early February highs, and its exponential 200-dma. Odds of a dip tomorrow are probably pretty good but a breakout over $47.50 could shoot AYI straight to our target. Our target is the $49.50-50.00 zone. The Point & Figure chart looks very bullish with a $62 target and a breakout over resistance.

Picked on February 5 at $45.50 *triggered
Change since picked: + 1.60
Earnings Date 04/03/08 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 857 thousand

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Expedia - EXPE - close: 25.13 chg: +0.64 stop; 23.39

Internet-related stocks were up nicely today. EXPE tested support near $24.00 and bounced sharply, as we expected. The stock posted a 2.49% gain. More conservative traders might want to consider a tighter stop near $24.00. Our target will be the $27.00-27.50 zone.

Picked on February 11 at $24.25 *triggered
Change since picked: + 0.88
Earnings Date 02/07/08 (confirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 3.7 million

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General Moly - GMO - close: 10.11 change: +0.37 stop: 9.18

Metal and mining-related stocks were strong today. GMO added 3.8% and is once again trading near resistance around $10.25. We see potential resistance at $10.50 and its 50-dma so we are suggesting a trigger to buy GMO at $10.55. If triggered we have two targets. Our first target is the $12.40-12.50 zone near its December highs. Our second, more aggressive target is the $13.90-14.00 range. We are starting with an aggressive (wide) stop. You may want to adjust yours.

Picked on February xx at $xx.xx <-- see TRIGGER
Change since picked: + 0.00
Earnings Date 03/31/08 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 665 thousand

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Microsoft - MSFT - close: 28.96 change: +0.62 stop: 27.39

MSFT is finally starting to bounce and shares added 2.19% today, which is a pretty good move for MSFT. We would still consider new bullish positions here. MSFT has been resting against two significant trendlines of support. We have two targets. Our four to six week target is the $31.85-32.00 range. We are considering a longer-term target in the $34 region.

Picked on February 10 at $28.56
Change since picked: + 0.40
Earnings Date 04/24/08 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 90.7 million

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Varian Semi. - VSEA - close: 35.87 change: +0.70 stop: 33.45

Technology stocks lead the market higher today. VSEA participated with a 1.99% gain. Shares confirmed the breakout over its 50-dma and hit our trigger to buy it at $35.75. The play is now open. Our target is the $39.75-40.00 range but we will need to watch for potential resistance at the exponential 200-dma and the simple 100-dma. The Point & Figure chart for VSEA has turned bullish and points to a $46 target.

Picked on February 13 at $35.75 *triggered
Change since picked: + 0.12
Earnings Date 04/24/08 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 1.5 million
 

Short Play Updates

Terra Nitrogen - TNH - cls: 126.36 chg: +0.41 stop: 137.26

It looks like the entire fertilizer industry under performed the market today. TNH, MOS, MON, POT all failed to participate in the market's rally. Shares of TNH were plunging in the last ten minutes of trading. We do not see any changes from our previous comments. Currently we're suggesting readers cover their shorts (exit) at $117.50-115.00. Then we're suggesting readers buy the dip near its 200-dma in the $116.00-114.00 zone. We have two bullish targets on the bounce. One at $124 and then at $134. Once the bullish play begins our stop loss will be $109.45. Meanwhile the latest data puts short interest at 3% of the very (VERY) small float of 4.8 million share. A 3% short interest is not normally that worrisome but that is a very small float and raises the risk of a short squeeze.

Picked on February 07 at $129.40
Change since picked: - 3.04
Earnings Date 02/070/08 (confirmed)
Average Daily Volume = 455 thousand

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United Parcel Ser. - UPS - cls: 73.51 chg: +1.04 stop: 74.05

UPS continues to bounce on what appears to be hope that the U.S. will avoid a recession. Yet at the same time the Department of Transportation came out with a report today stating that freight slowed in 2007 for the second year in a row. We have to admit that today's session in UPS was very bullish with a technical breakout over its exponential 200-dma, simple 100-dma and simple 200-dma. The stock is now challenging resistance at the $74.00 level. A failed rally here could be used as a new bearish entry point but the market has been looking a little strong this week so we would hesitate to pile on the shorts. Our target is the $66.00-65.00 zone.

Picked on February 10 at $70.58
Change since picked: + 2.93
Earnings Date 04/24/08 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 5.4 million

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Xerox Corp. - XRX - cls: 15.49 chg: +0.44 stop: 16.01

XRX displayed some relative strength with a sharp 2.9% gain and a rally right to technical resistance at its 50-dma. A breakout over $15.60 tomorrow and more conservative traders may want to hit the eject button. Volume, while still a little light, picked up a bit, which is a good sign if you're bullish. XRX remains under what should be resistance at $16.00 but we are seeing some bullish reversals in the stock's technical oscillators. We would hesitate to open new shorts at this time. Our short-term target is the $13.55 mark. XRX's Point & Figure chart is bearish with a $10.50 target. The most recent data listed short interest at just 0.6% of the float.

Picked on February 07 at $14.95 *triggered
Change since picked: + 0.54
Earnings Date 01/24/08 (confirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 5.9 million
 

Closed Long Plays

None
 

Closed Short Plays

Sovran Self Storage - SSS - cls: 39.90 chg: +0.63 stop: 40.05

The broad-based market strength helped power SSS higher, right to resistance near $40.00 and its 50-dma. It was our plan to exit today at the closing bell to avoid holding over earnings. The company reported after hours and revenues rose more than 12% for the quarter. We did not see any after hours reaction.

Picked on February 06 at $37.90 *triggered
Change since picked: + 2.00
Earnings Date 02/13/08 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 170 thousand
 

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