Editor's Note:
Two of our bullish candidates outperformed the major indices today, rising into the closing bell. FLIR disappointed and is trading lower after hours. WFMI beat estimates and guided higher and shares are sharply higher after hours. Meanwhile I have removed Agilent as a candidate and ADSK has hit our trigger to open bullish positions.

-James

Current Portfolio:


BULLISH Play Updates

Alcoa Inc - AA - close: 17.16 change: -0.24

Stop Loss: 15.75
Target(s): 18.50, 19.75
Current Gain/Loss: unopened
Time Frame: 6 to 8 weeks
New Positions: Yes, see trigger

Comments:
02/09 update: AA slipped toward the $17.00 level but the dip wasn't deep enough. There is no change from my prior comments. Right now the plan is to open bullish positions at $16.65. You could use a dip into the $16.65-16.00 zone as your entry point. If triggered we'll start with a stop at $15.75. Our upside targets are $18.50 and $19.90. The early 2010 high near $17.60 will probably be short-term resistance but the trend for AA looks pretty healthy.

Trigger @ 16.65

Suggested Position: Buy AA stock @ 16.65

- or -

Buy the March $17.00 calls (AA1119C17) current ask $0.84

Entry on February xx at $xx.xx
Earnings Date 04/11/11 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 41 million
Listed on February 2nd, 2010


Autodesk, Inc. - ADSK - close: 42.24 change: -0.69

Stop Loss: 39.90
Target(s): 46.00
Current Gain/Loss: + 0.3%
Time Frame: 2 weeks
New Positions: see below

Comments:
02/09 update: Good news! ADSK's dip slipped to $42.03. That was enough to open our trade, given the trigger at $42.10. I would still consider new positions now at current levels or on a dip near the 30-dma (around $41). This is a short-term, two-week trade. ADSK is due to report earnings in late February and we do not want to hold over the announcement.

Current Position: Long ADSK stock @ 42.10

- or -

Long the March $45 call (ADSK1119C45) Entry @ $0.90

chart:

Entry on February 9 at $42.10
Earnings Date 02/23/11 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 2.5 million
Listed on February 7th, 2010


AnnTaylor Stores - ANN - close: 23.79 change: -0.01

Stop Loss: 20.95
Target(s): 25.90, 27.85
Current Gain/Loss: unopened
Time Frame: 6 to 8 weeks
New Positions: Yes, see trigger

Comments:
02/09 update: Our new play on ANN did not see any progress. Shares are still struggling near the $24.00 level. Right now our plan is to launch bullish positions on a dip at $23.00. More cautious traders could wait for a dip closer to the $22.00 area.

If triggered we'll use a stop loss at $20.95. Our targets are $25.90 and $27.85. FYI: The P&F chart is still long-term bullish in spite of the January correction.

Trigger @ 23.00

Suggested Position: Buy ANN stock @ $23.00

- or -

Buy the March $22.50 calls (ANN1119C22.5) current ask $2.35

Entry on February xx at $xx.xx
Earnings Date 03/11/11 (confirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 3.0 million
Listed on February 8th, 2010


Hansen Natural Corp. - HANS - close: 55.07 change: -0.60

Stop Loss: 53.40
Target(s): 59.50
Current Gain/Loss: - 0.8%
Time Frame: 6 to 8 weeks
New Positions: see below

Comments:
02/09 update: HANS dipped to the Monday, Jan. 31st low before trying to bounce late this afternoon. While this pull back near $55 looks like a new entry point readers may want to hold out for a dip closer to the $54.00 mark before initiating new positions. Small positions only to limit our risk.

- Small Positions to limit our risk -

Current Position: HANS stock @ $55.54

01/29 Exit call positions early. @ $1.15 (-23.3%)
01/26 the CBOE listed the MAR $60 call's open @ $1.50

Entry on January 26 at $55.54
Earnings Date 02/24/11 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 654 thousand
Listed on January 25th, 2010


Oracle Corp. - ORCL - close: 32.89 change: -0.14

Stop Loss: 31.40
Target(s): 34.90
Current Gain/Loss: + 0.8%
Time Frame: 6 to 8 weeks
New Positions: see below

Comments:
02/09 update: ORCL traded in a 50-cent range today. There is no change from my prior comments. I'd prefer to launch new positions on a dip closer to the $32.00 level.

Our target on ORCL is the $34.90 mark since $35.00 looks like the next level of resistance.

small positions to limit our risk.

Current Position: ORCL stock @ $32.62

- or -

Long the 2011 March $33 calls (ORCL1119C33) Entry @ $0.80

01/29 Consider an early exit, especially the calls.
01/27 The CBOE listed the open for our calls at $0.80

Entry on January 27 at $32.62
Earnings Date 03/24/11 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 27 million
Listed on January 26th, 2010


The TJX Companies - TJX - close: 49.37 change: -0.47

Stop Loss: 46.49
Target(s): 52.00, 54.50
Current Gain/Loss: unopened
Time Frame: 2 to 3 weeks
New Positions: Yes, see trigger

Comments:
02/09 update: We have been looking for TJX to hit $50 and pull back. It looks like the pull back may have started today. We want to be ready to buy the dip at $48.00 with a stop loss at $46.49. TJX has earnings in about two and a half weeks and we'll exit ahead of the report. We'll be aiming for $52.00 and $54.50.


FYI: The Point & Figure chart for TJX is bullish with a $62 target.

Trigger @ 48.00

Suggested Position: buy TJX stock @ $48.00

- or -

Buy the March $50.00 calls (TJX1119C50) current ask $1.30

Entry on February xx at $xx.xx
Earnings Date 02/23/11 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 3.4 million
Listed on February 5th, 2010


UnitedHealth Group - UNH - close: 42.07 change: +0.10

Stop Loss: 40.75
Target(s): 44.75
Current Gain/Loss: + 2.2%
Time Frame: 8 to 10 weeks
New Positions: see below

Comments:
02/09 update: For the third day in a row shares of UNH traded sideways in a narrow range near the $42 level. I am not suggesting new positions at this time.

Current Position: UNH stock @ $41.15

- or -

Long the 2011 March $42 calls (UNH1119C42) Entry @ $1.20

02/08: New stop loss @ 40.75

Entry on January 28 at $41.15
Earnings Date 01/20/11 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 5.9 million
Listed on January 20th, 2010


BEARISH Play Updates

Endo Pharmaceuticals - ENDP - close: 34.77 change: +0.20

Stop Loss: 35.40
Target(s): 31.00, 30.10
Current Gain/Loss: - 0.7%
Time Frame: 3 to 4 weeks
New Positions: see below

Comments:
02/09 update: ENDP tried to rally again but failed near its 50-dma for the third time in four days. I remain very cautious here and would be tempted to exit early right now. I am not suggesting new bearish positions at this time.

Current Position: Short ENDP stock @ 34.50

- or -

Long the 2011 February $35 PUT (ENDP1119N35) Entry @ $1.30

02/03 Consider an early exit now
02/01 New stop loss @ 35.40

Entry on January 27 at $34.50
Earnings Date 02/22/11 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 1.3 million
Listed on January 24th, 2010


CLOSED BULLISH PLAYS

Agilent Technologies - A - close: 43.43 change: -0.74

Stop Loss: 39.95
Target(s): 47.50
Current Gain/Loss: unopened
Time Frame: 1 week
New Positions: Yes, see trigger

Comments:
02/09 update: I am temporarily giving up on A as a candidate. I still think the stock has potential but we just didn't have enough time. The company is due to report earnings on Monday night and we don't want to hold over the announcement.

Our trade never opened.

Entry on February xx at $xx.xx
Earnings Date 02/14/11 (confirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 3.3 million
Listed on February 5th, 2010


FLIR Systems Inc. - FLIR - close: 32.46 change: +0.07

Stop Loss: 31.40
Target(s): 30.90, 33.00
Current Option Gain/Loss: +11.5%
Time Frame: exit before earnings
New Positions: see below

Comments:
02/09 update: Time is up! It was our plan to exit today at the close. Shares bounced from the $32 level to close near the top of its short-term trading range. The stock looks poised to breakout higher but that will depend on the company's earnings results.

Wall Street was expecting a profit of 44 cents a share. FLIR missed by a penny but revenues were stronger than expected. Guidance was only in-line with expectations. Shares of FLIR appear to be trading down near $30 after hours, but they are recovering.

Current Position: Long FLIR stock @ $29.10

02/09: Planned Exit. FLIR ended @ 32.46 (+11.5%)
02/08: New stop loss @ 31.40
02/03: New stop loss @ 30.90
02/01: New stop loss @ 30.40
01/29 Exit remaining call positions. option @ 1.80 (+12.5%)
01/29: New stop loss @ 29.75
01/28: 1st Target Hit @ 30.90 (+6.1%), option @ $2.00 (+25%)
01/25: New stop @ 28.90
01/19: Consider an early exit from the option position (bid $1.30)
01/15: New stop loss @ 28.49
01/10: FLIR provided another entry point near $28.50
01/08: New stop loss @ 27.90

chart:

Entry on December 22 at $29.10
Earnings Date 02/09/11 (confirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 1.6 million
Listed on December 18th, 2010


Whole Foods Market, Inc. - WFMI - close: 53.75 change: +0.84

Stop Loss: 50.95
Target(s): 57.50, 59.90
Current Gain/Loss: + 1.9%
Time Frame: Just a few days
New Positions: see below

Comments:
02/09 update: The trading gods were kind to us and WFMI outperformed on Wednesday with a +1.5% gain. Today was our last day. We wanted to exit at the close to avoid the risk of holding over the earnings announcement.

After hours WFMI reported earnings that were 5 cents better than expected. Management guided higher and the stock was trading significantly higher after hours (near $58/share). They could have just as easily missed and guided lower and been trading under $50 after hours. As it stands now WFMI will probably gap open higher. I would keep this stock on your radar screen. We may come back to it after the dust settles.

Our plan was to keep our positions small to limit our risk.

- Small Positions to Limit our Risk -

Closed Position: WFMI stock @ 52.70, Exit 53.75 (+1.99%)

- or -

February $55 calls (WFMI1119B55) Entry @ $1.31, Exit $1.83 (+39.6%)

02/09: Planned Exit. WFMI ended at $53.75 (+1.9%) Option +39.6%
02/08: New stop loss @ 50.95

chart:

Entry on February 2 at $52.70
Earnings Date 02/09/11 (confirmed)
Average Daily Volume: 1.8 million
Listed on February 1st, 2010