Our play list is shrinking as the stock market contracts.


BULLISH Play Updates

Airgas Inc. - ARG - close: 48.71 change: -0.63 stop: 48.49

ARG has pulled back to very short-term support. If it doesn't bounce here we'll be stopped out very quickly tomorrow. I am not suggesting new bullish positions at this time. We plan to exit ahead of the October 29th earnings report.

Our first target is $52.45.

Entry on September 25 at $47.25
Change since picked:     + 1.46  			
Earnings Date          10/29/09 (confirmed)    
Average Daily Volume:       1.5 million 
Listed on September 19, 2009    


Sotheby's - BID - close: 17.06 change: -0.54 stop: 16.80

I talked about the $17.00 level with its 50-dma acting as support. That's exactly where BID fell to this afternoon. If we don't see a bounce tomorrow morning we'll bet stopped out very soon. I'm not suggesting new bullish positions at this time.

The plan was to use small position sizes to limit our risk. Our first target is $19.95 since the $20.00 mark could be round-number resistance. Our second target is $22.00. Currently the Point & Figure chart is bullish with a $30 target. We do not want to hold over the early November earnings report.

Entry on   October 13 at $18.21 (small pos 1/2 to 1/4)
Change since picked:     - 1.15   			
Earnings Date          11/05/09 (unconfirmed)    
Average Daily Volume:       861 thousand
Listed on   October 13, 2009    


HMS Holdings - HMSY - close: 41.24 change: +0.40 stop: 39.90

HMSY held up reasonably well on Monday. However, more cautious traders may want to exit early anyway given the weakness in the S&P 500. I'm not suggesting new positions. We only have three days left. The plan is to exit on Thursday at the closing bell to avoid holding over earnings on Friday morning.

Our upside target is $44.90.

Entry on   October 17 at $41.55 /gap open higher 
                           /originally listed at $41.30
Change since picked:     - 0.71   			
Earnings Date          10/30/09 (confirmed)    
Average Daily Volume:       227 thousand
Listed on   October 17, 2009    


Jacobs Engineering - JEC - close: 45.99 change: -0.93 stop: 44.75

JEC painted an ugly session. The stock traded to $47.90, a new relative high, and then fell back toward $46.00. This could be interpreted as a short-term bearish reversal pattern. More cautious traders may want to exit early right now. I am not suggesting new bullish positions. Our first target is $49.50. Our second target is $53.00 but we'll plan to exit ahead of the mid November earnings report.

Entry on   October 15 at $45.88 
Change since picked:     + 0.11   			
Earnings Date          11/17/09 (unconfirmed)    
Average Daily Volume:       1.2 million 
Listed on   October 15, 2009    


Petrobras - PBR - close: 49.06 change: -0.53 stop: 45.95

There is no surprise here. I've been warning readers to expect a dip back toward the $47-46 zone. More conservative traders not interested in enduring that sort of volatility will want to exit early now. I'm not suggesting new positions at this time.

Our first target is $52.50. Our second target is $59.00. The P&F chart is bullish with a $63 target.

Entry on   October 08 at $46.80
Change since picked:     + 2.26  			
Earnings Date          11/13/09 (unconfirmed)    
Average Daily Volume:      12.8 million 
Listed on   October 07, 2009    


Pride Intl. Inc. - PDE - close: 31.99 change: -0.96 stop: 31.15

The dollar strength pulled oil lower and the oil stocks sold off. PDE fell 2.9%. We only have a few days left. More conservative traders may want to exit early now. We plan to exit ahead of the October 29th earnings. Our final target remains $34.75. I am not suggesting new positions at this time.

Entry on   October 08 at $31.15
Change since picked:     + 0.84
                         /sell half @ 32.95 (+5.7%)
Earnings Date          10/29/09 (confirmed)    
Average Daily Volume:       3.7 million 
Listed on September 12, 2009    


UltraShort Russell - TWM - close: 29.01 change: +0.60 stop: 26.30

The TWM is still bouncing as the market corrects. This is the ultra-short (double short) ETF on the Russell 2000 index that seeks to deliver twice the inverse of the daily performance of the Russell 2000.

Our first target is $31.90. Our second target is $34.50.

Entry on   October 24 at $28.41 
Change since picked:     + 0.60   			
Earnings Date          00/00/00 
Average Daily Volume:       4.2 million 
Listed on   October 24, 2009    


VisionChina Media - VISN - close: 9.64 change: -0.63 stop: 8.65

I want to repeat that if you haven't taken profits yet in VISN I strongly suggest you do so now. More conservative traders may want to raise their stops closer to $9.00. I expect the pull back to continue. We are not suggesting new positions at this time.

Over the weekend we adjusted the plan to sell half (shares were at $10.40 this morning). Our second and final target is $12.45. I'm not suggesting new positions at this time. This is a very aggressive trade and we wanted to keep our positions small.

Entry on   October 07 at $ 8.53 
Change since picked:     + 1.11
                          /take profits 10/24/09 (+20.3%)
Earnings Date          10/29/09 (unconfirmed)    
Average Daily Volume:       407 thousand
Listed on   October 07, 2009    


BEARISH Play Updates

Avis Budget Group - CAR - close: 9.96 change: -0.41 stop: 12.05

CAR continues to sink. Shares are testing round-number support at $10.00. We can expect to see a short-term oversold bounce from here but a failed rally under the 50-dma could be used as a new entry point. Our target is $9.55.

NOTE: CAR has a high amount of short interest, about 9% of the 101 million-share float. That raises the risk of a short squeeze. Readers may want to consider using put options to limit risk. A stop loss doesn't always work.

Entry on   October 20 at $11.25
Change since picked:     - 1.29   			
Earnings Date          11/02/09 (confirmed)    
Average Daily Volume:       3.8 million 
Listed on   October 17, 2009    


Navistar Intl. - NAV - close: 35.32 change: -0.09 stop: 40.25

NAV is still testing support at $35.00. We only want to open half of our position now. We'll plan on opening the second half of our position on a bounce to $37.50. Our first target is $30.50. Our second target is $27.75.

Entry on   October 24 at $35.41 (buy half a position)
Change since picked:     - 0.09   			
Earnings Date          12/30/09 (unconfirmed)    
Average Daily Volume:       1.5 million 
Listed on   October 24, 2009    


NASDAQ OMX Group - NDAQ - close: 19.24 chg: -0.61 stop: 20.65

Our new play on the NDAQ is now open. Shares broke down to new lows and hit our trigger to open bearish positions at $19.45. Our target to take profits is at $17.85. We'll plan to exit ahead of the November 5th earnings report.

chart:

Entry on   October 26 at $19.45
Change since picked:     - 0.21   			
Earnings Date          11/05/09 (confirmed)    
Average Daily Volume:       2.8 million 
Listed on   October 24, 2009    


Steel Dynamics - STLD - close: 14.71 change: -0.32 stop: 16.21

I don't see any changes from my weekend comments. I'm suggesting bearish positions now. Our target to take profits is at $12.60. Keep an eye on the simple 200-dma near $13.50, which will probably act as short-term support so expect a bounce there.

Entry on   October 24 at $15.03 
Change since picked:     - 0.32   			
Earnings Date          10/19/09 (confirmed)    
Average Daily Volume:       8.0 million 
Listed on   October 24, 2009    


Exide Tech - XIDE - close: 6.74 change: -0.42 stop: 8.05

XIDE under performed the market today with a 5.8% decline. Shares broke down under round-number support at $7.00.

Our target is $6.10. I'm considering a second target at $5.55. The stock can be a little volatile so we'll use a stop loss above resistance at $8.00. The set up makes this an aggressive, higher-risk trade. We want to exit ahead of the early November earnings report.

Entry on   October 21 at $ 7.21 
Change since picked:     - 0.47   			
Earnings Date          11/05/09 (unconfirmed)    
Average Daily Volume:       545 thousand
Listed on   October 21, 2009    


CLOSED BULLISH PLAYS

Gold Fields Ltd - GFI - close: 13.52 change: -0.64 stop: 13.80

The U.S. dollar bounced and that sparked profit taking in gold. The gold miners fell as a result. GFI broke support near $14.00 and hit our stop at $13.80.

chart:

Entry on September 30 at $13.78 
Change since picked:     + 0.02<-- stopped @ 13.80 (+0.0%)
Earnings Date          10/29/09 (unconfirmed)    
Average Daily Volume:       7.7 million 
Listed on September 30, 2009    


Patriot Coal - PCX - close: 11.19 change: -0.38 stop: 10.90

We got the pull back to $11.00 just like we planned but the bounce was pretty anemic and we've run out of time. We wanted to exit tonight at the close to avoid earnings.

chart:

Entry on   October 05 at $12.14 /gap open higher
                            /originally listed at $11.78
Change since picked:     - 0.95 <-- exit @ 11.19 (-7.8%)
                          /1st target hit @ 13.90 (+14.5%)
Earnings Date          10/27/09 (confirmed)    
Average Daily Volume:       6.4 million 
Listed on   October 05, 2009    


Playboy Ent. - PLA - close: 3.35 change: -0.33 stop: 3.35

Someone flashed the "sell" signal on PLA and the stock fell almost 9% today. Shares hit our stop loss at $3.35 closing the play. Hopefully readers didn't have much of a position left after taking profits at $3.12 and at $3.68.

chart:

Entry on September 01 at $ 2.65
Change since picked:     + 0.70 <-- stopped @ 3.35 (+26.4%)
                            /take profits 09/16/09 (+17.7%)
                           /take profits 10/24/09 (+38.8%)
Earnings Date          11/05/09 (unconfirmed)    
Average Daily Volume:       370 thousand
Listed on  August 29, 2009    


NYSE Euronext - NYX - close: 28.26 change: -0.89 stop: 28.49

The early morning bounce failed under the $30 level and NYX reversed to break down under short-term support. Shares hit our stop at $28.49 closing the play. The plan was to use small positions to limit our risk.

chart:

Entry on   October 22 at $29.33 (small pos 1/2 to 1/4)
Change since picked:     - 0.84 <-- stopped @ 28.49 (-2.8%)
Earnings Date          10/30/09 (confirmed)    
Average Daily Volume:       2.8 million 
Listed on   October 22, 2009