Editor's Note:
The U.S. market's oversold three-day bounce is starting to hit some stops. We saw both STI and T get stopped out today.

-James

Current Portfolio:


BULLISH Play Updates

Lam Research - LRCX - close: 36.75 change: +0.04

Stop Loss: 34.75
Target(s): 39.75
Current Gain/Loss: unopened
Time Frame: 3 to 4 weeks
New Positions: Yes, see below

Comments:
12/22 update: Our new trade on LRCX is not open yet thanks to a flat open for the S&P 500 and a dip for LRCX this morning. The stock spent the session consolidating sideways. We will try again.

I am suggesting we open small bullish positions tomorrow morning but only if both LRCX and the S&P 500 open positive. If the S&P 500 opens flat then we'll launch positions if LRCX opens positive. We'll use a stop loss under this week's low. Our target is $39.75.

*See Entry Details Above* (small positions)

Suggested Position: buy LRCX stock @ the open

- or -

buy the 2012Jan $38 call (LRCX1221A38)

12/22/11 trade not open yet. try again.

Entry on December xx at $ xx.xx
Earnings Date 01/25/12 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume = 4.0 million
Listed on December 21, 2011


Oxford Industries Inc. - OXM - close: 43.08 change: -0.99

Stop Loss: 40.90
Target(s): 44.90
Current Gain/Loss: + 1.8%
Time Frame: 3 to 6 weeks
New Positions: see below

Comments:
12/22 update: After hitting new highs yesterday OXM hit some profit taking today. The stock lost -2.2%. Look for short-term support at the simple 10-dma near $42.35. We will inch our stop loss up to $40.90.

(small positions)

current Position: long OXM stock @ $42.32

- or -

Long Jan $45 call (OXM1221A45) entry $0.85

12/22/11 new stop loss @ 40.90

Entry on December 19 at $42.32
Earnings Date 03/29/12 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume = 220 thousand
Listed on December 17, 2011


Rackspace Hosting - RAX - close: 43.19 change: -0.86

Stop Loss: 43.45
Target(s): 49.75
Current Gain/Loss: unopened
Time Frame: 4 to 8 weeks
New Positions: Yes, see below

Comments:
12/22 update: RAX underperformed the market again. If this stock doesn't show some improvement tomorrow then we'll drop it as a candidate.

We have a trigger to open bullish positions at $45.55 with a stop at $43.45. More conservative traders may want to wait for RAX to close over $46.00 instead since the spring 2011 highs may still be resistance.
FYI: The Point & Figure chart for RAX is bullish with a $65 target.

Trigger @ 45.55

Suggested Position: buy RAX stock @ 45.55

- or -

buy the Jan $45 call (RAX1221A45)

Entry on December xx at $ xx.xx
Earnings Date 02/09/12 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume = 1.5 million
Listed on December 20, 2011


Ross Stores Inc. - ROST - close: 47.66 change: -0.15

Stop Loss: 45.75
Target(s): 52.50
Current Gain/Loss: - 0.8%
Time Frame: 4 to 6 weeks
New Positions: see below

Comments:
12/22 update: ROST produced a minor pull back today. Readers can choose to wait for a new high over $48.15 or wait to try and buy a dip near $46.00 instead.

current Position: long ROST stock @ 48.05

- or -

Long 2012Jan $50 call (ROST1221A50) entry $0.45

Entry on December 21 at $48.05
Earnings Date 03/19/12 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume = 1.1 million
Listed on December 20, 2011


United Continental Holdings - UAL - close: 20.26 change: -0.04

Stop Loss: 20.35
Target(s): 24.75
Current Gain/Loss: unopened
Time Frame: 4 to 8 weeks
New Positions: see below

Comments:
12/22 update: UAL lost four cents on the session. If this stock doesn't show improvement tomorrow then we'll drop it this weekend.

Currently our plan is to open small bullish positions when UAL trades at $21.55.

Earlier Comments:
I see potential resistance near $21.50 so the newsletter is suggesting a trigger to open small bullish positions at $21.55. We'll use a stop loss at $20.35. We'll set our exit target at $24.75.
FYI: The Point & Figure chart for UAL is bullish with a $31.50 target.

Trigger @ $21.55 (small positions)

Suggested Position: buy UAL stock @ 21.55

- or -

buy the 2012Jan $22.50 call (1221A22.5)

Entry on December xx at $ xx.xx
Earnings Date 01/25/12 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume = 7.1 million
Listed on December 17, 2011


BEARISH Play Updates

Broadcom Corp. - BRCM - close: 29.77 change: +0.88

Stop Loss: 30.25
Target(s): 26.00
Current Gain/Loss: + 2.4%
Time Frame: 6 to 8 weeks
New Positions: see below

Comments:
12/22 update: Ouch! This oversold bounce in BRCM is quickly erasing our unrealized gains. Readers may want to exit early now. The stock has rallied and apparently stalled at resistance near $30.00. We have a stop loss at $30.25. If the market continues higher tomorrow then BRCM will likely hit our stop loss. I am not suggesting new positions at this time.

Suggested Position: short BRCM stock @ $30.53

- or -

Long 2012Jan $28 PUT (BRCM1221M28) Entry $0.88

12/22/11 readers may want to exit early now
12/14/11 new stop loss @ 30.25
12/13/11 new stop loss @ 30.55
12/12/11 new stop loss @ 31.20
12/05/11 BRCM gapped open higher at $30.53.

Entry on December 05 at $ 30.53
Earnings Date --/--/-- (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume = 8.2 million
Listed on December 03, 2011


Ctrip.com Intl. - CTRP - close: 23.82 change: +1.30

Stop Loss: 24.15
Target(s): 20.25
Current Gain/Loss: - 3.5%
Time Frame: 3 to 6 weeks
New Positions: see below

Comments:
12/22 update: It's been a volatile week for CTRP. Tuesday it was up +4.0%, yesterday down -3.9%, and today up +5.7%. The stock is now testing resistance near $24.00. Readers may want to go ahead and exit now. We are going to lower our stop loss to $24.15. I am not suggesting new positions at this time.

Earlier Comments:
I do consider this an aggressive trade. FYI: The Point & Figure chart for CTRP is bearish with a $9.00 target. Note: We want to keep our position size small to limit our risk. CTRP can be a volatile stock and short interest is nearing 10% of the float.

*Small Positions*

current Position: short CTRP stock @ 23.00

- or -

Long 2012Jan $22.50 PUT (CTRP1221M22.5) entry $1.40

12/22/11 readers may want to exit early now. New stop @ 24.15
12/19/11 new stop loss @ 24.25
12/13/11 readers may want to exit early. CTRP is not cooperating.
12/12/11 CTRP gapped open lower @ 23.00

Entry on December 12 at $23.00
Earnings Date 02/13/12 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume = 5.2 million
Listed on December 10, 2011


Electronic Arts - EA - close: 20.30 change: -0.00
(symbol changed from ERTS)

Stop Loss: 22.05
Target(s): 18.05
Current Gain/Loss: + 1.6%
Time Frame: 3 to 6 weeks
New Positions: see below

Comments:
12/22 update: EA produced a choppy morning but closed unchanged on the session. The overall trend is still down. Readers may want to look for another failed rally near the exponential 200-dma before considering new positions.

Earlier Comments:
Our multi-week target is $18.05. I would expect possible support at $20.00 and $19.00. This trade is going to take some patience. Let's keep our position size small.

(small positions)

current Position: short ERTS stock @ 20.65

- or -

Long 2012Jan $20 PUT (ERTS1221M20) entry $1.05

12/19/11 ERTS will start trading as EA starting on the 20th

Entry on December 14 at $20.65
Earnings Date 02/01/12 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume = 5.7 million
Listed on December 13, 2011


PACCAR Inc. - PCAR - close: 37.55 change: +0.50

Stop Loss: 38.25
Target(s): 32.50
Current Gain/Loss: + 3.9%
Time Frame: 3 to 6 weeks
New Positions: see below

Comments:
12/22 update: This oversold bounce in the market and PCAR is eating into our unrealized gains. Readers may want to exit now. I am still expecting resistance near $38.00. I am not suggesting new positions at this time.

NOTE: Our 2012Jan $36 puts are now $35.30 puts thanks to the recent dividend.

Earlier Comments:
More aggressive traders could place their stop above $41.30 instead. There is possible support near $36.75, near its November low, but we're aiming for $32.50.

(Small Positions)

current Position: short PCAR stock @ $39.11

- or -

Long 2012Jan $35.30 PUT (PCAR1221M35.3) Entry $0.80

12/22/11 readers may want to exit early now
12/19/11 new stop loss @ 38.25
12/17/11 new stop loss @ 39.05
12/15/11 thanks to a 70-cent dividend our 2012Jan $36 puts are now 35.30 puts.

Entry on December 09 at $39.11
Earnings Date 02/01/12 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume = 2.7 million
Listed on December 08, 2011


Vera Bradley, Inc. - VRA - close: 31.60 change: +0.47

Stop Loss: 35.25
Target(s): 27.50
Current Gain/Loss: + 4.7%
Time Frame: 3 to 6 weeks
New Positions: see below

Comments:
12/22 update: VRA continues to bounce from oversold levels. Nothing has changed from my prior comments. Readers may want to exit early now to lock in a gain. The action yesterday still looks like a potential bullish reversal.

The 10-dma should offer some resistance near $33.40.

Earlier Comments:
Traders need to keep in mind this is an aggressive, higher-risk trade. We want to keep our position size very small to limit risk. The most recent data listed short interest at almost 80% of VRA's very small 19.7 million share float. If there is some sort of unexpected rally in this stock it could spark a short squeeze and stops may not work very well in a fast market environment. I would suggest using put options in a situation like this to limit your risk but the spreads on the January puts are too wide. Our target is $27.50 although readers may want to take profits near $30.00 since it could prove to be round-number support. FYI: The Point & Figure chart for VRA is bearish with a $26 target.

(very small positions only!)

current Position: short VRA stock @ $33.17

12/21/11 new stop loss @ 34.05, readers may want to exit early now to lock in a gain.
12/19/11 new stop loss @ 35.25
12/15/11 this is an aggressive, higher-risk trade.

Entry on December 16 at $33.17
Earnings Date 12/07/11
Average Daily Volume = 796 thousand
Listed on December 15, 2011


CLOSED BEARISH PLAYS

Cash America Intl. - CSH - close: 47.16 change: +1.32

Stop Loss: 47.25
Target(s): 40.25
Current Gain/Loss: unopened
Time Frame: 3 to 6 weeks
New Positions: Yes, see below

Comments:
12/22 update: CSH is not cooperating. The larger trend is still bearish with a pattern of lower highs. Yet CSH is currently bouncing off support near $45.00. If the market rolls over then keep CSH on your watch list for a breakdown under $45.00. Yet given the market's current bounce we're not going to wait around. We're removing CSH from the newsletter with the trade unopened.

Trigger @ 44.75

Trade did not open

12/22/11 trade did not open. We are removing CSH as a candidate.

chart:

Entry on December xx at $ xx.xx
Earnings Date 01/26/12 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume = 331 thousand
Listed on December 14, 2011


SunTrust Banks, Inc. - STI - close: 17.65 change: +0.70

Stop Loss: 17.15
Target(s): 11.00
Current Gain/Loss: - 6.3%
Time Frame: 3 to 6 weeks
New Positions: see below

Comments:
12/22 update: Financials helped lead the rally higher today. STI outperformed with a +4.1% gain. The stock broke out past short-term resistance at $17.00. Our stop was hit at $17.15.

closed Position: short STI stock @ $16.12 exit 17.15 (-6.3%)

- or -

2012Jan $15 PUT (STI1221M15) entry $0.41 exit 0.15 (-63.4%)

12/22/11 stopped out at $17.15

chart:

Entry on December 20 at $16.12
Earnings Date 01/20/12 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume = 7.6 million
Listed on December 19, 2011


AT&T Inc. - T - close: 29.66 change: +0.36

Stop Loss: 29.55
Target(s): 24.25 or 22.75
Current Gain/Loss: - 0.5%
Time Frame: 6 to 9 weeks or more
New Positions: see below

Comments:
12/22 update: Shares of AT&T are getting into the holiday spirit. The stock showed some uncommon strength today and broke out past potential resistance at $29.50, its 150-0dma and its simple 200-dma. Our stop loss was hit at $29.55.

closed Position: short T stock @ 29.40, exit $29.55 (-0.5%)

- or -

2012Jan $27.50 PUT (T1221M27.5) Entry $0.31 exit 0.09 (-70.9%)

- or -

Mar $26 PUT (T1217O26) Entry $0.42 exit 0.20 (-52.3%)

12/20/11 new stop loss @ 29.55
12/19/11 after hours, T announces it will give up on plans to acquire T-Mobile, will pay $4 billion break up fee
12/17/11 new stop loss @ 29.65

chart:

Entry on December 07 at $29.40
Earnings Date 01/26/12 (unconfirmed)
Average Daily Volume = 23.4 million
Listed on November 26, 2011