BULLISH Play Updates

Ameron Intl. - AMN - close: 74.06 change: +0.13 stop: 69.45 *new*

Shares of AMN continue to drift higher but I remain cautious on it. The lack of volume is worrisome if you're a bull! I'm raising the stop loss to $69.45 and I am suggesting readers take profits at $74.70. We'll make $79.50 our second and final target. I'm not suggesting new positions at this time. I do consider this somewhat aggressive because AMN does not trade with a lot of volume.

Annotated chart:

Entry on      July 16 at $70.50 *triggered       
Change since picked:     + 3.56   			
Earnings Date          09/21/09 (unconfirmed)    
Average Daily Volume:       150 thousand
Listed on  July 15, 2009    


Aegean Marine Petrol. - ANW - close: 17.78 change: +0.03 stop: *varies*

I would prefer to buy ANW on a dip but I'm adding a breakout trigger tonight in case shares breakout over resistance at $18.00. Our buy-the-dip plan is to go long at $16.50 (up from 16.25). I'm also upping the stop loss to $15.75. If ANW breaks higher from here then we want to go long at $18.25 with a stop at $16.99.

If triggered at $16.50 our first target is $18.20 and our second target is $19.75. If trigged at $18.25 then our first target is $19.75.

Annotated chart:

Entry on      July xx at $xx.xx <-- two triggers
Change since picked:     + 0.00   			
Earnings Date          08/12/09 (unconfirmed)    
Average Daily Volume:       284 thousand
Listed on  July 18, 2009    


Hormel Foods - HRL - close: 35.89 change: -0.14 stop: 34.20

HRL held up pretty well. I was expecting more weakness on Friday but shares hovered around the $36.00 level. I don't see any changes from my Thursday update. Wait for a dip back toward $35.00-34.50 as a bullish entry point. We have a relatively tight stop. More aggressive traders may want to move their stop under the 50-dma or the $34.00 level. My first target is $37.90. My second target is $39.90. My time frame is mid to late August because we need to exit in front of earnings. FYI: The Point & Figure chart is very bullish with a $50 target.

Annotated chart:

Entry on      July 20 at $35.40 /gap higher entry
                              /originally listed at $35.25
Change since picked:     + 0.49   			
Earnings Date          08/20/09 (unconfirmed)    
Average Daily Volume:       486 thousand
Listed on  July 20, 2009    


J.P.Morgan Chase - JPM - close: 37.92 change: -0.23 stop: 33.90

Thus far we're not having much luck with our buy-the-dip strategy. Stocks refuse to sell-off. I believe we need to exercise patience here but I will up our entry point to $35.50. Our first target is 38.75. Our time frame is four to six weeks. FYI: JPM's P&F chart is bullish with a $51 target.

Annotated chart:

Entry on      July xx at $xx.xx <-- see TRIGGER  
Change since picked:     + 0.00   			
Earnings Date          07/16/09 (confirmed)    
Average Daily Volume:        55 million 
Listed on  July 18, 2009    


Morgan Stanley - MS - close: 28.25 change: -0.29 stop: 24.90

The sell-off on Friday was very under-whelming. Investors jumped in to buy the dip way too soon. Volume on Friday was only 14 million shares versus the normal 24 million. I'm suggesting we stick to our plan. We want to buy MS on a dip at $26.25. Our first target is $29.20. Our second target is $31.00.

Note: We might want to consider a buy the breakout entry point at $29.35.

Annotated chart:

Entry on      July xx at $xx.xx <-- see TRIGGER  
Change since picked:     + 0.00   			
Earnings Date          07/22/09 (confirmed)    
Average Daily Volume:        24 million 
Listed on  July 23, 2009    


Microsoft - MSFT - close: 25.56 change: +0.76 stop: 20.90

It looks like I was a little optimistic hoping for a pull back to $22.50. MSFT did not violate its channel (by much) and traders jumped in at $22.81. More aggressive traders may want to jump in now. I'm upping our entry point to buy MSFT to $23.00. Our new stop loss is $21.99. Our ten to twelve week target will be $27.75.

Annotated chart:

Entry on      July xx at $xx.xx <-- TRIGGER 23.00
Change since picked:     + 0.00   			
Earnings Date          07/23/09 (confirmed)    
Average Daily Volume:        58 million 
Listed on  July 23, 2009    


NATCO Group - NTG - close: 37.11 change: +0.46 stop: 33.90 *new*

NTG continues to show relative strength. The stock gained 1.25% on Friday. Currently our plan is to exit completely at $37.50. More aggressive traders may want to let this play run and just keep raising your stop loss but you'll need to raise it significantly to protect any profits. An alternative exit would be the June highs near $38.40. Readers may want to exit near there. I'm upping our stop to $33.90. I'm not suggesting new positions.

Annotated chart:

Entry on      July 15 at $32.56 *triggered/gap higher entry
Change since picked:     + 4.55   			
                              /sell 1/2 @ 36.65 (+12.5%)
Earnings Date          08/03/09 (unconfirmed)    
Average Daily Volume:       270 thousand
Listed on  July 14, 2009    


UltraShort QQQ - QID - close: 27.02 change: +0.01 stop: 26.75

Wow! Two of the NASDAQ-100's biggest components, AMZN and MSFT, disappointment investors on Thursday night and yet the NASDAQ bounces back from its Friday lows to almost positive territory. The QID gained a penny. This is very bad news for the bears. Odds are good that we're going to get stopped out soon. More conservative traders may want to exit early. I'm not suggesting new positions. Our first target was $31.95. We knew this was a very aggressive, contrarian play and suggested readers only trade small positions.

Don't forget that the QID is a double-short ETF so it should see twice the volatility.

Annotated chart:

Entry on      July 22 at $28.75 
Change since picked:     - 1.73   			
Earnings Date          00/00/00 
Average Daily Volume:        19 million 
Listed on  July 21, 2009    


Ross Stores - ROST - close: 44.49 change: +0.49 stop: 40.90 *new*

Retailer ROST displayed some strength on Friday but volume was light. I am upping our stop loss to $40.90. I don't see any other changes from my Thursday night comments. I'm suggesting readers take some profits right here. Go ahead and sell half your position if you have not done so already. I'm not suggesting new bullish positions at this time. Our first target is $45.75. Our second target is $49.45. My time frame is about six weeks.

Annotated chart:

Entry on      July 13 at $41.60 
Change since picked:     + 2.89
                              /sell half @ 44.00 (+5.7%)
Earnings Date          08/20/09 (unconfirmed)    
Average Daily Volume:       2.4 million 
Listed on  July 13, 2009    


BEARISH Play Updates

Arkansas Best - ABFS - close: 26.36 change: +0.85 stop: 27.05

The larger trend in ABFS is down but the risk just jumped for us with the transportation index breaking out over the 3500 level late last week. More conservative traders may want to abandon ship or tighten their stops toward the $26.50 level. I am not suggesting new bearish positions at this time. The suggestion to wait for a breakdown under $24.00 as an entry point still works. Our first target is $22.10. Our second target is $20.20.

Annotated chart:

Entry on      July 22 at $24.44 
Change since picked:     + 1.07   			
Earnings Date          07/22/09 (confirmed)    
Average Daily Volume:       800 thousand
Listed on  July 22, 2009    


Charles River Labs - CRL - close: 31.33 chg: +0.39 stop: 32.15

I'm still bearish on CRL but the market is just too strong. I'm not suggesting new positions at this time. More conservative traders could try and lower their stops toward $31.60. Our first target is $26.25.

Annotated chart:

Entry on      July 23 at $30.94 *new entry point
Change since picked:     + 0.39   			
Earnings Date          08/04/09 (confirmed)    
Average Daily Volume:       459 thousand
Listed on  July 22, 2009    


Gen-Probe - GPRO - close: 41.03 change: +0.80 stop: 42.01

GPRO surged toward $41.00 on Friday. The breakout reinforces the idea that shares have built a new short-term bottom over the last two weeks. I'm suggesting more conservative traders exit early right now. I'm not suggesting new bearish positions. The market is so overbought and due for a correction and that's the only reason I'm keeping this play open. Our first target is $38.05. Our second target is $35.25.

Annotated chart:

Entry on      June 23 at $42.03 /gap higher entry
                             /originally listed at $41.64
Change since picked:     - 1.00   			
Earnings Date          07/30/09 (unconfirmed)    
Average Daily Volume:       449 thousand
Listed on  June 23, 2009    


Intl. Speedway - ISCA - close: 25.06 chg: +0.11 stop: 26.15 *new*

Traders need to turn more conservative here with ISCA. Now that the market is in breakout mode odds are rising that ISCA will break higher from this consolidation pattern. Thus far shares have been under performing the market but that doesn't mean it won't try and catch up. I am lowering our stop loss to $26.15 and more conservative traders may want to just exit early now or lower their stop closer to $25.50. Our first target is $22.10. Our second target is $20.25. My time frame is six to eight weeks.

Annotated chart:

Entry on      July 09 at $24.75 *triggered       
Change since picked:     + 0.31   			
Earnings Date          07/07/09 (confirmed)    
Average Daily Volume:       342 thousand
Listed on  July 08, 2009    


Usana Health Sciences - USNA - close: 27.44 chg: +0.04 stop: 28.21

Our time is almost up. USNA is due to report earnings after the close on Tuesday, July 28th. We plan to exit on Tuesday at the closing bell assuming we don't get stopped out first. Considering the market's recent strength readers may want to seriously consider an early exit now. The only reason to keep this short alive is due to the market's severely overbought condition. I'm not suggesting new positions at this time.

Please note that I consider this an aggressive, higher-risk trade because shares have very, very low daily volume (54,000) and the stock has above average short interest (about 12%). That's not a great combination should a short squeeze appear. I am suggesting traders only use very small position sizes (at least half or less than your normal trade size). My first target to take profits is $21.00.

Annotated chart:

Entry on      July 20 at $25.29 /gap higher entry
                              /originally listed at $25.05
Change since picked:     + 2.15   			
Earnings Date          07/28/09 (confirmed)    
Average Daily Volume:        54 thousand
Listed on  July 20, 2009    


CLOSED BEARISH PLAYS

Humana Inc. - HUM - close: 31.53 change: +0.96 stop: 31.05

Growing opposition to Obama's healthcare reform is boosting the healthcare stocks. Shares of HUM rallied more than 3% and broke through resistance near $31.00 and its 200-dma. We were stopped out at $31.05.

chart:

Entry on      July 16 at $29.50 *triggered       
Change since picked:     + 1.55 <-- stopped out @ 31.05 (+5.2%)
Earnings Date          08/03/09 (confirmed)    
Average Daily Volume:       3.1 million 
Listed on  July 14, 2009    


Techne Corp. - TECH - close: 62.46 change: +1.02 stop: 63.05

I thought TECH offered a lot of promise as a bearish candidate but the market is just too strong. The stock has rallied back above the $62.00 level and a few key moving averages. I'm suggesting an early exit now.

chart:

Entry on      July 22 at $61.01 
Change since picked:     + 1.45 <-- exit early (+2.3%)
Earnings Date          08/04/09 (unconfirmed)    
Average Daily Volume:       138 thousand
Listed on  July 22, 2009